Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Double UP Double Down

If our future holds more of the same, only worse, the question becomes not how to fend off the hungry hordes attacking our bunker in the bush after TEOTWAWKI, but how to survive in our bungalow in the burbs on an average day.

In his book and on his blog FerFAL makes a convincing argument that increasing taxes and decreasing value of currency combined with crime and corruption will more likely result in a death spiral for our way of life than a dramatic revolution or civil war.

The more I study the problems that confront us, as a people and as a nation, the more convinced I become that FerFAL is right and those self proclaimed survival gurus predicting imminent internecine armed struggle are living in a fantasy world. Mutiny, it seems to me, just isn't in the cards.

So let's get real with our preparations. Buying a "ranch" in a "Survival Community"?

Eh, I'll pass!

Stocking up on food?

You bet!

A few gold coins and a lot of pre-1965 US silver dimes & quarters?

Of course!

Guns & Ammo?

You Betcha!

But what about the more mundane aspects of survival in devolving economy?

Got soap?

Nonperishable supplies can be stockpiled in large but reasonable amounts so that in times of chaos A) you don't have to endanger yourself going out to get them and B) you don't have to do without them. Also, not having to spend whatever money you have on hand at the moment on everyday essentials gives you other options for the deployment of that resource that could pay dividends as you adapt to the ever changing situation.

If you're a member of Costco, Sam's Club or one of the other big box stores that offer lower prices by selling in bulk you're already doubling up most of your purchases by virtue of the sizes available. Instead of the petite bottle of dishwashing liquid you're offered the jumbo size, often two of them taped together.

It makes sense to buy a 24 can case of the Campbell's soup you enjoy rather than a few cans at a time at the local supermarket. But if the grocery has a super sale don't hesitate to clear their shelves and load up yours.

TP or not TP that is the (30 roll) question, whether it is nobler in the mind to suffer the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune (with old magazine pages) or take arms against a sea of troubles and by opposing end them with 180 or so rolls in the closet?

It may not seem like much of a survival strategy; a pantry full of food and dishwashing liquid, a laundry room with an extra extra-large box of laundry detergent and a hall closet bulging with TP and hand soap; but the time and money you save by not having to go out searching for such things is time and money you'll have available to deploy in other areas.

Before you pooh-pooh the savings to be had consider that after an economic collapse the reemerging reality will be full of constantly moving parts that won't always provide necessities at prices you can afford or maybe not at any price.

Little Things Mean a Lot
Don't discount medicine and health aids. An infected splinter can kill you just as dead as a bullet. It just takes longer and is more painful. A decayed tooth can kill you too.

Eye drops, aspirin, Mole Skin (to prevent/treat blisters), New Skin (for cuts & splinters), toothpaste and all those over the counter pills you routinely take for this that and the other ailment may not be available (or may be prohibitively expensive) so you have to ask yourself: "If I buy an extra bottle of pills and have to throw it away in a few years do I count it as a loss or insurance?"

Oh sure (if you're lucky) eventually you'll run out of these things, but hopefully by then the emergency will have stabilized. If not, you'll be no worse off then the guy ahead of you in line as you try to buy a Big Mac with one of the new $1,000,000 dollar bills.

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