11 Places to Avoid Going When SHTF- Planning a Bug Out Can Seem Overwhelming. but the More You Plan and Prepare in Advance, the More Likely You Will Remember Which Places to Avoid Going When SHTF

When it comes to being prepared for a SHTF event, preppers are focused on threats from natural disasters to nuclear wars, EMPs, and devastating cosmic events.  The situations that people can focus on and become obsessed with preparing for and unpredictable and vary widely. There’s no way that one person or family could be completely prepared for every single type of event. So, most people choose one or several related events they believe are imminent and prepare as best they can for those.

But the less talked about threat that will be overwhelming no matter what the situation is that arises, is population density. For example, according to this map of population density by county shows that roughly two-thirds of the U.S population is located in the Eastern half of the United States. In fact, according to recent reports by the U.S. Census Bureau (2010 data), approximately half the population resided in just 146 counties out of 3000 counties in the United States.

That’s right. The biggest threat to your safety and the safety of your family is in fact, other people. They aren’t “bad” people out to get you. Some of them would likely give the shirt off the back to help others in normal circumstances. But in a SHTF situation, people just like you who are doing what they need to do to provide for their families can be a threat. Scared, and willing to do anything to get away from immediate danger, large numbers of these people can be the difference between life and death for your family.

So, when SHTF, how do you mitigate population density to increase your ability to keep yourself and your family safe? The easiest way is to plan to avoid other people as much as possible. The problem that most people run into during an emergency or SHTF situation is they are unprepared, and they panic. When you sense danger, the first instinct for most people is to flee. Sure, some people will naturally react with fight instead of flight, but the majority of people will flee first and fight only when cornered.

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The best way to be prepared to avoid the crowds of desperate people is to know which places to avoid going when SHTF. We’ve listed some examples below:

1. Downtown

It goes without saying that downtown areas of any city should be avoided. This is especially true in mid to large cities where lack of regular sanitation services will create ideal conditions for diseases. The risk of rioting, looting, and violent attacks is also greater in downtown areas. City dwellers are statistically less prepared for a SHTF event as many families live paycheck to paycheck with very little stockpiled supplies.

In addition, because population density is highest in these areas, stores and other sources for supplies will be quickly cleaned out. Many city residents depend on public transportation on a daily basis and are less likely to have access to a vehicle to flee the city. Mass numbers of people in these areas will be desperately seeking food, water, and medical supplies, as well as transportation out of the city.

2. Main Roads, Intersections, and Freeways

If you are planning to bug out to an area outside of the city, or if you are caught away from home, it may seem like the shortest route is the best course of action. But, keep in mind that main roads and busy intersections will quickly become overwhelmed with people trying to flee just like you are.

Most people only know one or two ways to get out of the city and these are usually main roads. Those who are looking to steal supplies will see main roads and intersections as prime locations to ambush unwary travelers. Get a map of your area now and plan several routes out of the city and from work to home that use side roads rather than highways and state routes.

3. Bottleneck Points

A bottleneck can be any area that a majority of people must travel in order to get out of a cul de sac, neighborhood, city, county, or state. In most cases, this will be things such as bridges, overpasses, underpasses, freeway ramps, etc. If several hundred or thousands of people are fleeing the same area, and everyone must cross the same bridge to get out of town, that will quickly become a bottleneck point.

The same is true for any areas where there is only one road going in or out. Avoid these areas at all costs and look for alternative ways to get through or cross, even if it means taking a longer way around or traveling in a nontraditional way (motorcycle, private plane, bicycle, on foot, etc.).

4. Hospitals

It may seem weird to see hospitals on a list of places to avoid following a SHTF event because one would think this would be a place to find help. The reason to avoid hospitals if at all possible is because most people, especially those that are injured, will flock to them. Even people who aren’t injured may head for the hospitals to get help for family members who have been injured.

Emotions in this area will be high and the risk of violence is greater as people lose control. In addition, patients who are ill and/or patients dying from lack of resources will increase the risk of rampant infection and disease. The hospital and surrounding areas will be a petri dish environment for viruses and bacteria. With medical resources limited, you’ll want to avoid getting sick to increase your odds of long-term survival.

5. Prisons and Surrounding Areas

This one should be a no brainer. If there is a prison in your area or along the route to your bug out location (BOL), you’ll want to avoid the area as much as possible.

During a SHTF event, it’s likely that guards and staff may abandon their posts to care for their families which increases the likelihood that violent prisoners can escape and be on the roads. These prisoners will come out into the chaos without any supplies, they will be desperate to survive and could be more willing to use violence to commandeer your supplies or vehicle.

6. Police Stations and Military Bases

Like with hospitals, it may seem counterintuitive to avoid police stations and military bases following a SHTF event. Police and military are supposed to serve and protect citizens, right? But although it may seem like going to these locations would be a safer alternative, in most cases it will be a waste of precious time and may in fact get you killed or locked up instead.

Police stations and military bases will be among the most secure buildings. They will be heavily guarded, and they will not be opening their doors to the mass numbers of people who show up. Crowds outside these areas will be frustrated and angry at not being granted protection. The last thing you want is to step into the middle of that crowd with your BOB of supplies, food, and water.

7. Shelters or FEMA Camps

Although shelters are designed to help those people who find themselves without a place to sleep or food to eat, most shelters are understaffed and operating at or above capacity even in normal times. Homeless shelters and food banks will be quickly overrun by mass numbers of people. Some may be forced to close the doors to newcomers within days of a SHTF event.

These shelters and any publicized FEMA camps that spring up will have very poor conditions. Supplies will be rationed, tempers will be high, and violence will be rampant. As more people arrive, and conditions worsen, the buildings and surrounding areas will quickly become breeding grounds for infection and disease.

(Here are 23 survival uses for honey that you didn’t know about.)

8. Grocery Stores and Shopping Plazas

For people who are not prepared, their first instinct will be to find food, water, and supplies. Humans are creatures of habit and thus many will flock to local grocery stores and shopping plazas and begin looting for needed supplies.

These areas will be picked clean within less than 24 hours of a SHTF event. Those that are left there will be the most desperate and scared for their lives. These crowds are unpredictable and often violent.

9. Gas Stations, Auto Parts, and Convenience Stores

The reason to avoid gas stations, auto parts, and convenience stores is similar to that of other stores and shopping areas. Desperate people are going to flock to the first places they think of to find supplies to get out of the area. Those trying to get of the city will want to try to gas up and/or get.

For all but those people who were quick to get on the road, getting gas will be nearly impossible. Lines at these places will be long, tempers will be high, and violence will be much more likely, especially when pumps run dry and shelves are bare.

Experts predict that an EMP strike that wipes out electricity across the nation would ultimately lead to the demise of up to 90% of the population. However, this figure begs an important question: if we were able to live thousands of years without even the concept of electricity, why would we suddenly all die without it?

10. Hardware and Sporting Goods Stores

One thing that people will be searching for when SHTF is guns, ammo, and other items to use for protection. Since sporting goods and hardware stores carry a lot of these items, these stores will be hot spots for looting. If you don’t already have your weapons ready when SHTF, you’re better off to look around your home for items you can use, rather than try for a quick trip to a hardware or sporting goods store.

11. Banks, Check-Cashing, & Pawn Shops

One thing just about everyone who isn’t prepared in advance will be looking to get first is accessing to cash. For this reason, banks, check cashing or loan offices, and pawn shops should be avoided following a SHTF event. This is where large numbers of people will flock toward first.

Many people in these areas will become trapped, unable to access their money, either because computers are down or because cash reserves were already depleted. When desperate people can’t get access to cash that they believe will help them get needed supplies, things will get ugly.

12. Large Shopping Malls and Public Squares

When things get chaotic just before a SHTF event, the last place you will want to be is in a public square or large shopping mall. These places can quickly become a gathering place for desperate, angry people. Rioting, looting, and violence will be high in these areas so it’s best to avoid them if possible.

13. Large Social Gatherings and Public Events

If you even suspect that things around you are getting chaotic. If you sense civil or economic unrest or have recognized other precursors to a SHTF event, you will want to avoid large social gatherings and public events. These events draw large crowds of people on the same date and time. Events or gathering that are tradition or annual events that can be predicted or are widely publicized are more dangerous. These are prime target events for terrorists.

What to do Instead:

Now that you know what places to avoid going when SHTF, here are some things you can do to make sure you can avoid these places and still have a good chance of surviving:

Starting today, make it a habit to keep your gas tank at least 3/4 full at all times. Take steps to properly store additional gasoline in approved containers so that you can fuel up at home and skip the last-minute trip to the gas station on your way out of town.

Follow a regular maintenance schedule for your vehicle to keep it in top running condition at all times. Proactively make vehicle repairs so that your risk of a breakdown is less when SHTF. Stockpile spare parts such as belts, spark plugs, wiper blades, washer fluid, transmission fluid, antifreeze, brake fluid, and engine oil so you can replenish as needed without that trip to the auto parts store.

Create safe storage places where you can begin to stockpile emergency cash so that you have it on hand when SHTF and do not need to make any last-minute runs to a bank, ATM, or pawnshop for cash.

Conduct a weapons inventory of any guns, ammo, knives, and personal self-defense weapons (mace, stun gun, etc.). Be sure to consider any other potential items (ball bats, shovels, chains, etc.) that could be used for weapons and protection during a SHTF event. Know what you have on hand and train yourself and family in how to use it if needed for protection.

Clearly mark danger zones in advance on a map or maps of your local area and surrounding areas. Plan several different escape routes so that you can quickly change course if needed due to unexpected danger or obstacles. Identify and plan to use alternative routes out of town including logging roads, railroad tracks, and power line easements if needed to avoid danger zones.

Locate and clearly map out any sources of fresh water that won’t be the first thought for others such as small lakes, ponds, private or public swimming pools, creeks, and rivers. Include a hand water pump and collapsible water jug in your BOB as well as a way to filter and boil water from these sources.

Stockpile lightweight food, ways to filter water, and medical suppliesso that you won’t be tempted to make a last run to grocery or other shopping areas. Create a system of hidden supply caches along your routes to your BOL so you can replenish supplies that are used, stolen, or confiscated along the way.

Planning a bug out can seem overwhelming. But the more you plan and prepare in advance, the more likely you will remember which places to avoid going when SHTF.

Preparedness Hacks: Once a nuke is heading your way, you might think that there isn’t much left to do, but you would be wrong!

Because we will show you America’s natural nuclear bunkers that are also EMP proof. When the sirens start wailing, all you need to do is pick the closest one to your home, where you can take cover before it hits.

Ammo Is One Of The Best Items That You Can Stockpile For A SHTF Situation: Top 13 Survival Uses For Fired Ammo

As a survivalist and hunter, I go through a good amount of ammunition. This includes both bullets and shotgun shells.

Whether I am out tracking down game or enjoying target practice after a stressful day, there are shell casings left over. With such an abundant resource, I would not be a good prepper and survivalist if I threw them away.

The obvious solution is to reload my own ammunition. While I know how to reload ammo and have the supplies, I simply don’t have time to reload all of it. If times were tougher and I was hunting every day, I would take the time to reload everything.

In the meantime, there are lots of additional ways to repurpose brass casings and plastic shotgun shells.

There are many crafty projects for these leftovers, but I wanted to put together a list of practical uses. Most of these would be ideal for a survival scenario.

Working With Brass Casings

Brass is a fairly soft metal, so it is relatively easy to cut and bend it. You can use it for decorative purposes, but it is more functional in bearings and seals for machinery. It does not spark, so you can use it around volatile substances like gasoline. It melts easily, so you can melt it down to form it into other shapes.

For cutting brass you can use just about any saw or heavy blade. You can use a grinder, a file, or even rub the casing on concrete to sand it down. For a flat piece of brass, you just need to cut off the closed end with the primer. From there you just hammer it flat. You can drill through it with any kind of bit or can even use the point of your knife to punch a hole.

Repurposing Shotgun Shells

Shotgun shells are made of plastic, so they are even easier to cut. Any sharp blade will do. You can cut just above the brass to remove the plastic.

However, the cleanest way to remove the plastic is to heat the brass. If you flip a clothes iron upside down and set the brass portion on top, it will start to heat up. With just a little heat, the plastic will pull free leaving the brass portion separate. Be sure to clean out your shells first so there is no residual left to catch fire.

Here are the functional ways you can reuse your casings and shells:

Emergency Whistle

In a survival scenario, it is vital that you have a way to alert people of your presence. This could be to alert rescuers, or it could be just to communicate with your family.

13 Survival Uses for Fired Ammo

A good survival whistle is perfect for this.

The sound will cut through the wind better than just yelling, and it won’t wear out your voice.

Long casings for pistols are best, but you can cut the taper off of rifle casings as well.

Cut a notch with the edge closest to the opening perpendicular to the length of the shell. The other side of the notch should be 30 to 45 degrees off parallel. Find a stick that tightly fits inside the casing. Make sure the end of the stick is completely flat. Then shave down the side facing the notch so there is a little gap for air.

When you push in the stick, it should make a whistling sound.

Sinkers For Fishing

13 Survival Uses for Fired Ammo

It is always nice to have a variety of different weights available to attach to your fishing line.

Brass casings work great for this. Just fill your brass with sand and pound the open end shut.

Cut a hole for your line and you are ready to fish.

Chimes

Larger casings will work better for this project if you want a good amount of volume. These work great for tripwire perimeter alarms or just to let you know when the wind is blowing.

Just cut off the closed end and punch holes to attach strings to each shell. String them up on a frame and you have chimes.

Dog Tags

13 Survival Uses for Fired Ammo

When I refer to dog tags, I really mean just a metal label. It could be for your pets, to label your keys, or it could be for labelling products in your garage. You just need to cut off the primer end and pound the casing flat. Punch a hole in one side. Then just stamp any info you would like using a normal metal stamp.

Shims

Sometimes you need a spacer or a shim to fill in a small gap on equipment or in the joints of a wooden project. The thin sheets of brass you get from flattening a shell casing is perfect for this job. Just put in as many sheets as you need for the thickness and cut off any excess brass.

Arrowheads

13 Survival Uses for Fired Ammo

To make arrowheads out of brass casings, start by flattening the casing.

Cut off the end and then pound it flat. Cut out the shape you want remembering to have a good shape to attach the arrowhead to an arrow shaft. Sharpen both edges and you are ready to go hunting.

Seals

If you have a piece of equipment made of a harder metal like steel, it may need a seal to maintain pressure. A soft metal can be cut to shape and installed in the junction to seal and maintain pressure.

Colored Lens For A Flashlight

Having colored light at night can be helpful in a survival scenario.

13 Survival Uses for Fired Ammo

Red light does not disrupt night vision like white light does. Green light is ideal for hunting hogs at night. Any color can be used to turn your flashlight into a signal.

Just remove the brass from the plastic shell and flatten the plastic with a heat gun. Then cut it to the correct size and attach it to your light.

Drawer Handles

Shotgun shells make good handles as they are brightly colored and easy to grab. For tools or equipment, just add epoxy inside the shell and press the tool or equipment lever into the epoxy.

Let it dry and you are good. For drawer pulls just put a screw in the epoxy with the pointed end facing out.

Bearings

13 Survival Uses for Fired Ammo

Brass is great for bearings in machinery to prevent metal rubbing on metal. In some cases, you can use the primer end as is. In others it would need to be melted down to cast a bearing.

Buttons

For quick buttons just cut off the primer end of a shotgun shell or brass casing. Then drill holes and you are good to go.

Candles

13 Survival Uses for Fired Ammo

Shotgun shells are ideal in size and shape for emergency candles. They are small enough to put in your pocket, but large enough to stay lit for an hour or so.

The shell itself keeps the wax from getting all over everything. Just add a wick and some melted wax and let it set up.

Push Pins

If you are planning a foraging grid or a route for bugging out, you will need to mark landmarks on a map.

Push pins are easier to use if they have a shell casing attached. Just find push pins that fit inside the casing and glue them in place. They are less likely to end up in your carpet or your foot that way.

Grommets

13 Survival Uses for Fired Ammo

Brass Grommets are needed at the corners of tarps and other things to prevent them from fraying when attached to cordage.

You can cut the primer end off of either shotgun shells or brass casings.

Then pop out the primer itself and you have your grommet.

As you can see, there are lots of uses for your discarded brass casings and shotgun shells. You just need to take the initiative to try out a few of these projects. Start collecting all of your casings and shells. When SHTF, you will be ready to use these to their maximum potential.

8 Great Depression Era Recipes We Will Need Soon

On October 29, 1929, the US Stock Market crashed, surging the country into what we know as the Great Depression. During the Great Depression, countless jobs were lost, millions lost their incomes, and families started to go hungry. This was during a time when many still lived off their own homestead, and if they didn’t, they needed to start.

Situations got so desperate, hungry people made food out of almost nothing. Canned goods, flour, and eggs from your own chickens were sometimes all that was available, if anything at all. Some only had one meal per day, and went hungry at nighttime. Others ate the same food for days or weeks on end because that’s all that was available to them.

Although this happened over 90 years ago, today we prepare ourselves for all types of worst-case scenarios. We know that, of course, this Depression-era famine will happen again, so here are some recipes that your parents or grandparents made during the Great Depression out of nearly nothing.

By no means you need to follow any of these recipes exactly, just adapt with what you have.

During a SHTF situation, pain could become an annoyance for some, but unbearable for others.

If doctors are scarce and medicine becomes even scarcer, this one little weed, found all over North America and similar to morphine, could be a saving grace.

Depression Bread

Firstly, this bread is a huge loaf made from only 4 ingredients, all of which will already be in your food reserve.

Keeping homemade bread on-hand adds to many of the dishes on this list.

8 Great Depression Era Recipes We Will Need Soon

Ingredients

  • 5 lbs. flour
  • 5 tbsp yeast
  • 6 tsp salt (optional, if you have it)
  • 6 cups warm water, more or less depending on your flour

Instructions

Add flour to a bowl or board and make a well in the flour mound.

Add yeast, salt, and warm water to well and knead into a dough.

Allow to rise for 60 minutes, or until doubled in size.

Add to a baking pan and make 3-4 slits with a knife on the top of the dough.

Bake at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes until the bread is nicely browned on top.

Chipped Beef On Toast

Secondly, using the bread you just made, slice off some nice thick slices to serve with this dried meat Depression delicacy.

What You’ll Need

  • Beef on Toast
  • 8 oz. dried beef jerky
  • 2 tbsp butter or oil
  • 4 tbsp flour
  • 4 cups milk
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Sliced homemade bread, for serving
  1. Add jerky and oil to a pan over medium heat. Cook until the meat softens, about 3-4 minutes.
  2. Stir in your flour and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add milk and bring to a low boil. Allow sauce to thicken for up to 5 minutes.
  3. Season with salt and pepper if you have it.
  4. Serve over homemade bread, toasted if desired.

Dandelion Salad

8 Great Depression Era Recipes We Will Need Soon

This salad can be harvested from your own backyard, just as they did in the 1930’s.

As we know, dandelions are totally edible and delicious, they just require lots of cleaning before eating.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb. freshly picked dandelions, cleaned well
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice or vinegar
  • 2-3 tbsp oil

Guidelines

Head outside and pick the largest, freshest dandelions you can find.

Then, cover the dandelions completely in cold water and rinse 3-4 times.

Using a knife, peel off the darkest outer leaves from the root. Rinse again.

Once clean, either chop or leave whole, depending on your preference.

Add to a large bowl and season with vinegar and oil. Serve immediately.

Baked Beans

8 Great Depression Era Recipes We Will Need Soon

Beans are cheap, plentiful, and filling.

They were very common in the Depression era, and recently have had a resurgence with the Covid-19 epidemic.

If you do not have every vegetable used, omit without issue.

What It Is Needed

  • 1 package soaked dried beans, or 2 cans of beans
  • One tomato, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 tbsp lard
  • Two tbsp molasses
  • One cup water
  • Instructions
  1. Soak your beans, if using dried, overnight and drain the liquid.
  2. Prepare your veggies by chopping. Omit any vegetable that you do not have on-hand.
  3. Add lard to a stock pot and cook your vegetables until tender.
  4. Add the beans, molasses, and water. Cook all together with a lid on for 2-3 hours or until the beans have your desired consistency. Add more water if needed.
  5. Serve hot. Leftovers of this dish keep very well and can be eaten many days in a row.

Ash Cakes

Ash cakes got their name because different renditions are cooked in the hot white ash of your campfire. These are only 3 ingredients but are filling and have a great texture.

Ingredients

  • ½ cup cornmeal
  • 1 cup meat stock or water
  • 2 tbsp lard or grease

Instructions

8 Great Depression Era Recipes We Will Need Soon

Mix both ingredients together in a bowl and allow to sit overnight to hydrate the cornmeal. Pat into a bread pan and refrigerate or add to your cool storage before allowing to set up.

The next day, slice into 1-inch slices and fry in melted lard. Serve hot and crispy.

Hoover Stew

This stew is an amalgamation of what you currently have in your reserve. This recipe is very easily adaptable to the items you already possess.

Essentials

  • 1 box noodles
  • A can of tomatoes
  • 1 package of hot dogs, or 1 can of sausage or meat
  • A can of corn, peas or beans
  • 2-4 cups water

Guidelines

8 Great Depression Era Recipes We Will Need Soon

Mix all ingredients together in a pot until boiling.

Then simmer for 15-20 minutes until the noodles are tender.

If you have aromatics, onion and garlic would be a great addition.

If not, the recipe is great as is.

You might be living in one of America’s deathzones and not have a clue about it
What if that were you? What would YOU do?

In the next few minutes, I’m going to show you the U.S. Nuclear Target map, where you’ll find out if you’re living in one of America’s Deathzones.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is untitled-1.png

Potato Soup

Many of us have potatoes buried in our yards right now, saving them through winter. This is a great way to use up your potato harvest at the end of winter, but you can always use canned potatoes too.

Ingredients

  • 4 large potatoes, peeled and sliced (or 2 cans of potatoes)
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • One carrot, sliced
  • A can of meat, sausage, or hot dogs (optional)
  • 3 cups water or stock
  • 3 cups milk
  • Any herbs you have on-hand
  • Salt to taste

What To Do

Potato Soup

Slice all your potatoes, garlic, and carrots. Add to a soup pot with the meat,  water, and milk. Bring to a boil and reduce the heat, keeping the mix at a low simmer.

Then, cook for 30 minutes until all veggies are tender.

Add herbs and salt, if using. Serve hot.

Rice Pudding

And finally, our only Great Depression dessert recipe. There aren’t many comforts during a depression, but at least this rice pudding will bring some familiarity to an undesirable situation.

What It Is Needed For This

  • 1 cup rice
  • 2 cups milk
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 3 tbsp honey, maple syrup, or molasses
  • Pinch of cinnamon
  • Rice pudding
  • Combine all ingredients in a small saucepan and cook over low heat, about 20 minutes, stirring frequently.
  • Taste for doneness and cook an additional 5 minutes, tasting until desired consistency.
  • Serve warm.

Therefore, we may need our parents or grandparents’ Great Depression-era recipes sooner than we think, thanks to the increasing instability brought on by governments and the current pandemic.

Cooking with almost nothing is possible, as the 1930’s and early 1940’s taught us. All of these recipes are easily made with what you should already have in your root cellar and non-perishable reserves. Use your judgement to add or omit any ingredients that suit you.

In conclusion, the next time the economy crashes, which may be sooner than we think, keep prepared with some recipes to keep your family fed and your homestead moving forward.

The First 19 Foods You Should Stockpile For Disaster

A good stockpile of food will go a long way toward helping you survive the aftermath of any disaster or life crisis, especially when grocery stores are emptied.

In fact, I’d go so far as to say that there are people who are not preppers who nevertheless instinctively know to stockpile food. This really isn’t surprising when you consider that through most of mankind’s history, stockpiling food was essential to survival — specifically surviving the winter months. During those months, wildlife is bedded down trying to stay warm and plants are dormant. If one didn’t have a good stockpile of food, their chances of survival were pretty darn slim.

You might be living in one of America’s deathzones and not have a clue about it
What if that were you? What would YOU do?

In the next few minutes, I’m going to show you the U.S. Nuclear Target map, where you’ll find out if you’re living in one of America’s Deathzones.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is untitled-1.png

But knowing to stockpile food and knowing what to stockpile are two different things. The vast majority of what the average American family eats is unsuitable for stockpiling, because it falls into one of three categories:

  • Junk food – Lots of carbs, lots of sugar, lots of salt and lots of chemicals, but not much nutrition.
  • Fresh food – Foods that won’t keep without refrigeration.
  • Frozen food – It will begin to spoil within two days of losing electrical power.

So we need to come up with other foods — foods that will give us a lot of nutrition and also have the ability to be stored for a prolonged period of time. Here are what we consider the 19 most important ones:

1. Beans – This is one of the more common survival foods. Not only are beans plentiful and cheap, but they provide a lot of protein — something that’s hard to find without meat.

2. White rice – The perfect companion to beans. An excellent source of carbohydrates, and it stores well. [Note: Don’t store brown rice, which contains oils and will spoil.]

3. Canned vegetables – A good way of adding micro-nutrients to your survival diet. Canned goods keep well, long past the expiration date on the label.

4. Canned fruit – For something sweet, adding canned fruit allows you a nice change of diet. Being canned, they keep as well as the vegetables do.

5. Canned meats – Of all the ways of preserving meat, canning is the most secure in protecting the meat from decomposition. While it doesn’t typically have as good a flavor as fresh meat, it still provides animal protein at the most reasonable price you’ll find.

6. Honey – As long as you can keep the ants out of it, honey keeps forever. Plus, it is beneficial during cold season.

7. Salt – Nature’s preservative. Most means of preserving foods require the use of salt. In addition, our bodies need to consume salt for survival.

8. Pasta products – Pasta is a great source of carbohydrates, allowing you a lot of variety in your cooing. Besides that, it’s a great comfort food for kids. Who doesn’t like spaghetti?

9. Spaghetti sauce – Obviously, you need this to go with the pasta. But it is also great for hiding the flavor of things your family doesn’t like to eat. Pretty much anything, with spaghetti sauce on it, tastes like Italian food — whether you’re talking about some sort of unusual vegetable or a raccoon that you caught pilfering from your garden.

10. Jerky – While expensive to buy, jerky is pure meat, with only the addition of spices. Its high salt content allows it to store well, making it a great survival food. It can be reconstituted by adding it to soups and allowing it to cook.

11. Peanut butter – Another great source of protein and another great comfort food, especially for the kiddies. It might be a good idea to stockpile some jelly to go with it.

12. Wheat flour – For baking, especially baking bread. Bread is an important source of carbohydrates for most Americans. Flour also allows you to shake up the diet with the occasional batch of cookies or a cake.

13. Baking powder & baking soda – Also for making the bread, cookies or cakes.

14. Bouillon – Otherwise known as “soup starter,” this allows you to make the broth without having to boil bones on the stove for hours. Soups will probably be an important part of anyone’s diet in a survival situation, as they allow you to eat almost anything. Just throw it together in a pot and you’ve got soup.

15. Water – We don’t want to forget to stockpile a good supply of water. You’ll go through much more than you expect. Experts recommend a minimum of one gallon per person per day, but remember: That’s just for drinking.

16. Whole-wheat –Crackers are a good replacement for bread and make a fine substitute when making sandwiches. Due to their higher fat content, whole-wheat or whole-grain crackers have a shorter shelf life than their plain counterparts (check the box for expiration dates), but the extra fiber pays off when you’re particularly hungry. Consider vacuum-packing your crackers to prolong their freshness.

17. Nuts and trail mixes – Stock up on these high-energy foods—they’re healthful and convenient for snacking. Look for vacuum-packed containers, which prevent the nuts from oxidizing and losing their freshness.

18. Powdered milk –Almost all dairy products require refrigeration, so stock this substitute for an excellent source of calcium and vitamin D when fresh milk isn’t an option.

19.Multivitamins –Supplements will help replace the nutrients you would have consumed on a normal diet.

While this doesn’t constitute a complete list of every type of food that you should stockpile, it’s a good starting point. You’ll want more variety than this, but in reality, your family can survive for quite a while with just the 15 things on this list.

As your stockpile grows, add variety to it. One way of doing that is to create a three-week menu, with the idea of repeating that menu over and over. If you have everything you need to cook everything on that menu, you’ll have a fair assortment of food, and enough so that your family shouldn’t grow tired of it.

During a SHTF situation, pain could become an annoyance for some, but unbearable for others.

If doctors are scarce and medicine becomes even scarcer, this one little weed, found all over North America and similar to morphine, could be a saving grace.

National Guard on Hand as Trump Supporters Rally in DC- Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump are marching Wednesday in multiple rallies in Washington as they back his objection to the certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in the November election.

Supporters of U.S. President Donald Trump are marching Wednesday in multiple rallies in Washington as they back his objection to the certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s victory in the November election.

Trump is speaking at a rally on the Ellipse, just south of the White House.

Biden is set to deliver remarks Wednesday from his home in Delaware after meeting with his economic advisers.

Congress is expected to certify the Electoral College results on Wednesday.

Ahead of Wednesday’s events, Trump continued to use Twitter to make unsubstantiated claims that he won the election.

“They won’t stand for a landslide election victory to be stolen,” the president said of those traveling to Washington for the rallies.

Hundreds of people gathered Tuesday night in Washington, including some groups who clashed with police.

Authorities said they arrested at least six people on charges that included weapons and ammunition possession, assaulting a police officer and possessing a stun gun.

Washington streets were shut down, and Mayor Muriel Bowser called in the National Guard, fearing repeats of violence between protest groups like the city saw during the summer. 

Downtown shops have been boarded up, and National Guard members will assist D.C. and National Park police controlling crowds on Wednesday.

Bowser and politicians in neighboring Maryland and Virginia have urged residents to stay home Wednesday and avoid counterprotests.

Some activists on social media also called for counter protesters to stay home, warning against inciting violence between groups.

Clashes between Trump supporters and counter protesters in December led to four people suffering stab wounds.

The Proud Boys, designated a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, are expected to be present at the rally on Wednesday. 

Proud boys leader Henry “Enrique” Tarrio was arrested Monday on charges of destruction of property for burning a Black Lives Matter flag that was torn down from a historic Black church during protests last month in Washington. He was released from police custody on Tuesday but has been barred from returning to the city before his next hearing in June.

The election certification, a usually routine and ceremonial function that is the final step after the Electoral College officially elected Biden on December 14, has turned into a litmus test on Republican lawmakers’ loyalty to Trump. More than 100 Trump loyalists in Congress are set to challenge Biden’s certification.  

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a letter to fellow Democrats on Tuesday that the certification “is about guaranteeing trust in our Democratic system.” 

“As Members of Congress, we all have a responsibility to uphold the principle: the people are sovereign and that they hold the power to choose their leaders through the ballot box,” she said. 

10 Survival Skills Your Great-Grandparents Knew (That Most Of Us Have Forgotten)

Our modern society is highly dependent upon we’ll call the “system.” Not only do we rely upon utility services to bring us electricity, water and natural gas, but also on an incredibly complex supply chain which provides us with everything from food to computers. Without that supply chain, most of us wouldn’t know what to do.

This situation is actually becoming worse, rather than better. When I compare my generation (I’m in my 50s) to that of my children, I see some striking differences. In my generation it was normal for a boy to grow up learning how to do a wide variety of trade skills from his father, and seemingly everyone knew how to do basic carpentry and mechanic work. But that’s no longer normal.

If we extrapolate it back, we can see that my father’s generation knew even more – and my grandparent’s generation even more. Those older generations were much more closely tied to the roots of an agricultural society, where people were self-reliant. There are multiple skills they had which modern society no longer considers necessary.

But if we were to have a breakdown in society, those skills which we never bothered to learn would become essential. Those who don’t know these skills would either have to learn or die trying.

During a SHTF situation, pain could become an annoyance for some, but unbearable for others.

If doctors are scarce and medicine becomes even scarcer, this one little weed, found all over North America and similar to morphine, could be a saving grace.

Here are 10 skills our grandparents knew that most of us have long forgotten:

1. Gardening for Food

During World War II, there was a campaign for people to plant “Victory Gardens” at their homes. These vegetable gardens were needed to alleviate food shortages, because so much of the nation’s produce was being sent overseas to keep our troops and those of our allies fighting. With fewer men available to work the farms, there was less produce available.

This custom of having a vegetable garden in one’s backyard survived for many years after the war was over, but it gradually died out. Today, when many people think of gardening, they are thinking of a flower garden. While those are nice to look at, they don’t give you much to eat.

Starting and growing a vegetable garden can be harder than most people think. When I started gardening, it took me three years to get more than just herbs and a smattering of produce out of it. I’m glad I didn’t wait until I needed that garden for survival.

2. Animal Husbandry

Image source: stylonica

Although the industrial revolution took place more than 100 years ago, many people continued to raise at least a small amount of their own livestock at home. This led to cities enacting ordinances limiting what animals people could keep within city limits.

Raising dogs and cats is much different than raising chickens, rabbits and goats for the table. A large part of being able to raise these animals is recognizing their needs and being able to diagnose their sicknesses. Farmers don’t depend upon the vet for most illnesses; they take care of it themselves.

3. Food Preservation

It’s rare to find people who preserve their own foods, but in our grandparent’s generation, it was common. Canning food, smoking meats and even making one’s own sausage were all common home tasks, which ensured that people had enough food to get through the winter. Today, it’s rare to find people who know these methods of food preservation, let alone having the equipment needed.

If we go back very far in American live, pretty much every middle class home had a smokehouse for preserving meats. I’ve seen some homes where the smokehouse was actually in the kitchen chimney. Instead of building a normal chimney, they had a very wide one, with enough room to hang sides of beef in it for smoking.

4. Blacksmithing

You might think that blacksmithing goes all the way back to the Old West, but in actuality it is a skill that stayed around much longer than that. My dad was a blacksmith in his later years, although most of the work he did was ornamental.

I remember traveling in Mexico about 20 years ago and having a spring on my car’s suspension break. A local blacksmith fashioned me a new spring, tempered and shaped exactly right for my vehicle. Blacksmiths can make or repair just about anything out of metal. Yet few today know this valuable skill.

Maybe we don’t need blacksmiths today, but if an EMP hit the country and we were without electrical power, the skills of a blacksmith would allow people to have their tools repaired — and new ones fashioned. Since the manufacturing plants presumably would be shut down, that ability would be essential for rebuilding America.

5. Basic Carpentry

Image source: cauthencarpentry.com

Everyone should know how to make basic repairs to their home. Without the ability to repair damage from a natural disaster, it might not be possible to use the home as a survival shelter. Woodworking skills also allow one to make furniture and other items to help survive.

6. Basic Mechanical Repair

Depending upon the type of disaster that hits, the family car may just end up being a large paperweight. But there are many survival scenarios where it would be useful to be able to fix your car, keeping it running for general use. As long as there is gasoline, that car would be useful.

The ability to diagnose and repair an engine is useful not only for keeping a car on the road, but also for fixing lawn mowers, chain saws and other power tools.

7. Herbal Medicine

The roots of medicine were herbal medicine. While doctors have existed for millennia, it hasn’t been until recent times that those doctors had such a wide range of pharmaceuticals to work with. Before that, doctors made their own medicines.

Many women also learned to use what nature provided for medicine. It was not uncommon a few generations back for mom to take care of her family’s medical needs, using recipes that she had learned from her mother. Today, that sort of medicine is called “old wives’ tales” but it works just as well as it always did.

8. Horseback Riding

This may not seem like much of a survival skill, but in the Old West, stealing a man’s horse was a hanging offense. That’s because being stranded without a horse was generally a death sentence. While horseback riding today is only done for sport, if the automobile becomes no longer usable, people will be looking for horses once again.

Riding a horse is actually more complicated than the movies make it appear. Breaking a horse is a skill that few know. Likewise, there are few today, outside of the drivers for the Budweiser Clydesdales, who know how to hitch and drive a team of horses. But in America’s past, our ancestors drove teams with as many as 40 horse or mules in them.

9. Hunting

Now, I know there are a lot of hunters out there, maybe even some who are reading this. But I have to say that a lot of what we call hunting today and what I learned as a kid are nothing alike. I have a hard time calling it hunting when corn is put out as bait and the hunter hides in a blind, waiting for their choice deer to come to eat.

Real hunting, at least what they did in the past, involved knowing the animal’s habits and staking out a place where the animals were likely to come. It required patience, understanding of the animals being hunted — and a pretty good shot with the rifle.

10. Butchering an Animal

Raising an animal is one thing, butchering it is another. Few hunters even know how to properly butcher an animal, as most take them to a butcher for cutting up and packaging. Yet, an animal which is not properly cleaned and butchered can cause disease. You can also waste a lot of good meat by not doing it correctly.

Preparedness Hacks: Once a nuke is heading your way, you might think that there isn’t much left to do, but you would be wrong!

Because we will show you America’s natural nuclear bunkers that are also EMP proof. When the sirens start wailing, all you need to do is pick the closest one to your home, where you can take cover before it hits.

Affordable Vehicles That Can Survive an EMP: The EMP Attack Is Portrayed As Sending Modern Society Back to Medieval Times

The energy that heats your food in a microwave, the data sent to your smart phone and the music you listen to on a terrestrial radio – these are all forms of electromagnetic energy.

An EMP test tower in Nevada

An EMP test tower in Nevada

What makes the EMP unique is that this electromagnetic energy is sent in large amounts over a very short period of time.

The EMP attack is portrayed as sending modern society back to medieval times. Whether this is true or not is subject to much debate. One often discussed topic is whether a typical vehicle could survive an EMP and if so, what vehicle would have the best chance of doing so.

Conventional wisdom is that the older the vehicle, the more likely it can survive an EMP strike. This may be true in theory, but may not always be true in practice. One reason for this is that modern vehicles have some shielding against unwanted electromagnetic energy interference. For example, car engineers understand that you wouldn’t want a TV, radio, walkie-talkie, Wi-Fi or other wireless signal to interfere with your vehicle’s onboard computers.

But there are many other variables that will determine if a given vehicle will survive an EMP attack and to what extent it would survive it. The only way to know for sure is to actually test the vehicle. But even with extensive testing, you wouldn’t necessary have a perfect list of EMP-proof vehicles.

Therefore, the following list provides a good starting point as to what vehicles stand the best chance of surviving an EMP strike in drivable condition and are also affordable for the average person.


Option 1: 1979 Jeep CJ5 4×4. Average Street Value = $7,100

1979 Jeep CJ5 4x4

The Jeep (AMC) CJ5 is one of the most famous versions of the venerable “Willys Jeep.” Given its reliability and performance, it’s no wonder the CJ5 had one of the longest production runs of any Jeep. Starting in the 1980s, the CJ5 Jeeps were made with more advanced electronics, such as AM/FM radios and more complex electronic control units. Getting a CJ5 older than a 1979 model can’t hurt, but the prices tend to rise as the model years get older, so the affordability advantage is diminished.

Contributing to its EMP survivability is a naturally aspirated engine utilizing a carburetor. As one might expect, the CJ5s are typically found with manual transmissions, which are easier to repair, should the need arise.

The CJ5 also makes a fantastic off-road vehicle, which can be of great use in a survival situation. Lastly, the CJ5 doesn’t stand out too much (except to the most fanatic Jeep fans), so it’s unlikely to draw any unwanted attention.

Related: 10 Things to Have Ready before the Huge EMP !!!


Option 2: 1984 Chevrolet Blazer. Average Street Value = $6,100

Chevrolet Blazer

The Chevrolet Blazer is a popular classic vehicle and it’s easy to see why, given its traditional styling, history and off-road capability. Like other vehicles listed in this article, the 1984 Chevrolet Blazer’s engine uses a carburetor and natural aspiration, so there are fewer sensitive electronics controlling engine performance. The Blazer is also very popular for making additions and modifications, with many options available.

There are other models of the Blazer that would do well surviving an EMP, such as a model from the 1970s or early 1980s, but they are significantly more expensive, almost double the price on the used car market.


Option 3: 1972 Volkswagen Beetle. Average Street Value = $5,900

Volkswagen Beetle

The Volkswagen Beetle is one of the most recognizable vehicles ever manufactured; in fact, it is the best-selling vehicle in history. It’s also another iconic vehicle that’s noted in pop culture (The Love Bug comes to mind).

Starting around 1975, the VW Beetles were made with the Bosch fuel injected engines, which added extra electronics to the vehicle. While this addition is not very advanced by today’s standards, it adds a weak link to the VW Beetle’s EMP resistance. Therefore, most VW Beetles from the early 1970s or older would serve as the most ideal versions for surviving an EMP strike.

If a truck or SUV isn’t your thing, the VW Beetle is definitely a vehicle you should look into getting.


Option 4: 1983 Ford Bronco. Average Street Value = $5,000

The Ford Bronco was first released back in 1966 and was discontinued 20 years later in 1996. However, it’s a popular vehicle and has a bit of history, especially in pop culture (OJ Simpson’s infamous Ford Bronco is of the 1993 model year).

The 1983 Ford Bronco makes a great vehicle for surviving an EMP because it has a naturally aspirated carburetor engine. This means a simple air intake system is used and the air-fuel mixing doesn’t rely on electronic assistance.

But why is the 1983 model recommended in particular? Starting with the 1984 model Ford Broncos, electronic emissions equipment became standard. Besides creating another area of potential failure in an EMP strike, it also reduces the vehicle’s performance. Additionally, certain 1985 Ford Broncos have electronic fuel injection, which creates yet another potential weak point against an EMP.


Other Things to Consider

This article lists only a handful of vehicles that are likely to survive an EMP. Basically, any vehicle from the 1960s or earlier will probably survive an EMP event in drivable, if not perfect condition. However, they’re unlikely to be the most affordable or practical. Obviously, an even older vehicle, such as one that’s steam or animal-powered would have the absolute best chance of surviving the EMP, but they wouldn’t be practical to operate (for most people) and are quite expensive to purchase and maintain.

Even if you find a great vehicle for surviving an EMP, don’t forget other practical considerations, such as parts availability, ease of maintenance and repair, performance, inconspicuousness and fuel availability (gasoline versus diesel).

Life In The Christmas City- Pennsylvania’s Bethlehem tells the tale of two economies in the pandemic era.

There was a time, last century, when one small Pennsylvania city helped build and defend America. Through its namesake steel company, Bethlehem—in the Lehigh Valley, about 90 minutes west of New York City—built wartime ships and bequeathed a nation of landmark bridges and skyscrapers. In Manhattan alone, Bethlehem Steel’s beams constructed the Woolworth Building, Rockefeller Center, and the George Washington Bridge. It’s hard to imagine today’s urban landscape without the company’s legacy.

But Bethlehem Steel, like so many iconic companies in America, couldn’t survive the global economy. Through a passage of incarnations and reinventions, the city of Bethlehem moved on—and eventually prospered. Over time, the city has even benefitted from its proximity to New York. Tourists from the metro region, for instance, annually visit Bethlehem’s historic downtown. Meantime, a booming logistics industry, which replaced the steel mills, supplies Gotham and the East Coast. And an urban exodus, hastened by the pandemic, drives the Lehigh Valley’s bullish real estate market and population growth. In many ways, the region is experiencing a renaissance despite this period. As Becky Bradley, executive director of the Lehigh Valley Planning Commission, remarked: “We aren’t the Rust Belt, U.S.A.” 

Still, the Covid-19 crisis presents challenges in Bethlehem, known as the Christmas City. This holiday season, the downtown’s small business owners face state-level restrictions that discourage in-person commerce and hit the bottom line. This economic uncertainty, though, contrasts with the region’s overall industrial growth. In the city’s South Side and throughout the Interstate 78 corridor, the logistics and warehousing industry thrives—especially as consumers rely on e-commerce amid the pandemic.

Indeed, the city displays the inescapable tension between small businesses—struggling to survive Covid-19—and mammoth companies, which can withstand the virus and even enjoy accelerated growth. As this tumultuous year draws to a close, Bethlehem tells the tale of two economies in the pandemic era. 

♦♦♦

Bethlehem was born on Christmas Eve, 1741, when a group of Moravians—an old Germanic Protestant sect—christened the community in a stable. Through the 18th century, they built an idyllic and quaint industrial hub, centered around crafts and trades. The Moravians’ industrial quarter, dating to that period, remarkably still stands along the Monocacy Creek in downtown Bethlehem. The quarter “can be considered America’s earliest industrial park,” noted Charlene Donchez Mowers, president of Historic Bethlehem Museums and Sites. “It was the largest concentration of pre-Industrial Revolution trades in the American colonies.”https://imasdk.googleapis.com/js/core/bridge3.432.0_en.html#goog_420251404

First Panel, TAC’s 7th Annual Foreign Policy Conference What Does 2020 Mean For Foreign Policy00:00/01:00

By the early 19th century, America’s Industrial Age was fueled by Pennsylvania’s bountiful natural resources—including in Bethlehem, home to the state’s first iron furnace in the 1820s. By the Civil War era, the growing borough—which had opened to non-Moravian residents in the mid-1840s—was a center for iron making. Anthracite coal—crucial to the smelting of iron and transported on the Lehigh Canal—played a significant role in Bethlehem’s development. In 1863, the Bethlehem Iron Company—a precursor to Bethlehem Steel—was operating its first blast furnace. 

Through the 19th century, Bethlehem’s South Side transitioned from Moravian-owned farms to a dense enclave of European immigrants who worked in the city’s mills and factories. Then, in 1904, the Bethlehem Steel Corporation was incorporated. By World War II, the company—America’s second-largest steel producer—employed 31,000 and even featured its own police and fire departments. Bethlehem Steel, according to one historical account, had “its own hierarchy and its own societal rules.” The company’s massive, noisy operations—including its famous blast furnaces—“so dominated its landscape that it even gave the children of south Bethlehem, the working people’s side of town, their lullaby each night.”

The Depression era, however, didn’t spare Bethlehem. For perspective, in 1933, the city’s steel employment hit a low of 6,500. And so, on December 7th, 1937, the city’s civic leadership responded by launching a campaign to promote Bethlehem as “Christmas City, U.S.A.” That evening, a crowd of 400 packed into the Hotel Bethlehem—a commanding, ’20s-era, Beaux-Arts structure—to celebrate the city’s Christmas heritage. It was an appropriate venue. After all, 196 years before, the Moravian community had formally established Bethlehem where the hotel now stood. In the corner of the ballroom, upon flipping a switch, an electric “Star of Bethlehem” illuminated the sky in the nearby South Mountain.

“It is unfortunate that we are experiencing a minor depression,” said one Bethlehem leader. “It is hoped that these decorations will encourage our businessmen.” This decision to “capitalize on heritage tourism represented an early attempt at diversification into other revenue sources . . . and served as a touchstone in efforts to unite the city’s North and South Sides,” wrote Chloe Taft in the Journal of Planning History

The star—later replaced with a steel version—has continued to sit atop that mountain. For decades, it has overlooked Bethlehem as it experienced the trends—ill-advised redevelopment, economic decline, demographic change—that occurred in most post-industrial cities. By 1995, when Bethlehem Steel closed after 130 years, the local mood was somber. But the city—thanks to an early appreciation for historic preservation—managed to adapt in the 1990s through today as it once again renewed itself as a Christmastime destination. The pandemic, though, has complicated downtown’s upward trajectory. “It’s a bleak Christmas in Bethlehem,” said Bruce Haines, managing partner of the Hotel Bethlehem.

♦♦♦

The Hotel Bethlehem, where the “Christmas City” campaign began over 80 years before, is the architectural crown jewel of the downtown. But this wasn’t the case in 1998, when the historic hotel went bankrupt and Main Street was just beginning its next comeback. Haines, a former U.S. Steel executive, pulled together a group of investors and bought the landmark. Today, the hotel, which includes a restaurant, shops, and banquet facilities, is an annual tourist destination for its Christmas displays. But now, Haines, along with other business owners downtown, face Bethlehem’s busiest season amid Covid-driven disruptions.

For most of 2020, the downtown managed to endure Democratic Governor Tom Wolf’s controversial lockdowns and restrictions. In fact, by October, the future looked encouraging on Main Street; none of the downtown’s 80 shops and restaurants had gone out of business. Expanded dining on sidewalks and closed streets helped. “Our restaurant business in October was almost equal to last year’s October on the restaurant side even though we were at limited capacity—thanks to outdoor dining,” Haines noted. 

“We’ve worked with our merchants firsthand on ways to encourage people to ‘shop small all season long,’” said Tammy Wendling, Manager of the Downtown Bethlehem Association. The downtown even started Christmas earlier to drive tourism and commerce. According to Haines, on Thanksgiving weekend, the downtown enjoyed healthy street traffic and business volume. “People wanted to be out and about and return to normalcy,” said Haines. “We were seeing that dramatically and we were doing well.”

But on December 10th, Wolf, in response to rising Covid cases, announced new restrictions, including a three-week ban on in-person dining and a rule that “all in-person businesses serving the public may only operate at up to 50 percent of the maximum capacity.” Wolf essentially gave businesses one day to prepare for the restrictions. “He has used the restaurants as a vehicle to keep people at home,” said Haines. “In effect, we’re the fall guys . . . he has targeted our industry as the problem industry.”

Indeed, it was a devastating development for downtowns like Bethlehem—especially before Christmas. In many Pennsylvania communities, a restaurant rebellion ensued, including in Bethlehem’s South Side, where the Seven Sirens Brewing Co. has remained open. “It took us three years to open and 28 days to close down,” the brewery’s head of operations told Fox News. “A lot of our employees haven’t received their unemployment benefits and all those things and we’ve been reaching out to our bank, the SBA, to anyone that would possibly have any relief for us. It just doesn’t exist.”

Meantime, at the Hotel Bethlehem, Haines watched weekend reservations drop in half following Wolf’s announcement. He decided to close the hotel to the general public, limiting entry to registered overnight guests. It was another blow to the storied hotel, which, this fall, had invested nearly $100,000 in an air purification system. “Wolf is using the hospitality industry to make it unappealing for people to come out,” said Haines.

On the Sunday after the restrictions commenced, when visiting downtown, I passed Moravian College, the Colonial Industrial Quarter—now a World Heritage Site candidate—and the outdoor huts modeled after a German Christmas market. Most of Bethlehem’s downtown and North Side are beautiful, from the stately homes around Nisky Hill Cemetery to the colonial-era buildings on Main Street. Modest crowds, all wearing masks, dined at outside restaurants or shopped at retail establishments like Donegal Square, an Irish specialty store, and the Moravian Book Shop—the oldest bookstore in America.

For now, though, these businesses must survive the holidays—critical to annual income in normal times—and then somehow pull through the traditionally slow winter. Last week’s major snowstorm was undoubtedly another setback—especially for outdoor dining. “We are all worried about the fate of our businesses these next three weeks,” said Wendling. “They need relief and support.” 

♦♦♦

Across the Lehigh River, on the South Side, the former site of Bethlehem Steel presents its own remarkable story. Today, before old blast furnaces, is SteelStacks—America’s largest revitalized brownfield—and Wind Creek, a casino that temporarily suspended operations after Wolf’s latest mandates. And then, eastward—near the last heavy forging plant in operation—a seemingly endless landscape of warehouses emerges. These massive box structures—including two Walmart fulfillment centers—symbolize Bethlehem’s new economy.

Over the past decade, the Lehigh Valley—boasting a $43.3 billion GDP—has transformed into the nation’s fastest growing corridor for warehousing and logistics. Bradley, the planning commission director, summarized the enormity of this growth: “The Lehigh Valley has the largest new industrial facility growth in the U.S. and the second largest in the world behind China.”

In the case of Bethlehem, along with neighboring Allentown and Easton, geography is destiny. After all, the region’s Interstate 78—beginning outside Harrisburg—ends at Manhattan’s Holland Tunnel. In the past, Bethlehem’s famous steel beams had built New York’s skyscrapers, but today, the warehousing around this region directly supports the demands of city residents. As Bradley noted, this trend particularly accelerated in 2012, when Hurricane Sandy disrupted New York’s supply chains following the storm’s devastation. Today, the Lehigh Valley’s central location allows freight delivery—intensified by e-commerce—to supply a population of 100 million on the East Coast within one truck shift. 

Indeed, freight has made steel a distant memory. XPO, a third-party logistics provider, has operations throughout the valley, and FedEx Ground—opened in 2018 just north of Bethlehem—is the company’s largest facility in the nation (it opened a second regional sortation facility this year). Meantime, northeast of the city, UPS opened a 1-million-square-foot warehouse. And, in addition to Walmart, Amazon operates two fulfillment centers in the Lehigh Valley, with a third one—another 1-million-square-foot warehouse—slated to open near Allentown in early 2021. This fall, many of these employers haveincreasedemployment to meet the pandemic era’s explosive demands for online shopping—especially this holiday season. Overall, in the Lehigh Valley, the warehouse and distribution industry employ about 32,000 people—nearly equal to the number employed by Bethlehem Steel during World War II.

As this economic activity indicates, “projects continue despite the pandemic,” said Bradley. According to the planning commission, between January and October, the land development square footage growth for warehousing and logistics was approximately 4.9 million—exceeding the entire years of 2015, 2017, and 2019, respectively. As it stands, the Lehigh Valley currently features over 90 million square feet of physical inventory in this realm. 

And, in the near future, such industrial projects will grow even more dramatic with the rise of high cube warehousing. These automated structures, which can reach 140 feet, are already proposed in the region. If anything, all this growth is leading to congested highways and overdevelopment—a looming inconvenience for the New York transplants buying suburban houses. In some townships near Bethlehem, it’s erasing agricultural remnants of the region’s Pennsylvania Dutch and colonial past. 

But it’s also affecting Bethlehem’s small business owners, and their employees, who, earlier this year, were deemed “non-life-sustaining” during Covid-19 lockdowns. As the Lehigh Valley’s warehousing deploys goods throughout the East Coast, many of Bethlehem’s downtown businesses rely on old-fashioned commerce—and the hope that customers will purchase gifts rather than order online. Amid these latest restrictions, they could face a perilous, if not tragic, future. 

♦♦♦

And so, Bethlehem, this small city that once supplied America with steel beams, tells the story of our present economy. As the pandemic continues, small businesses—the backbone of any community—navigate an uncertain future. In the meantime, e-commerce fills what could become a permanent void in Bethlehem and elsewhere. But, this week, perhaps the sky offers a sign of hope. The real Star of Bethlehem, not the steel-framed version on the South Mountain, appeared when Jupiter and Saturn cross paths—a celestial phenomenon unseen in 800 years. Perhaps one can stand in front of the Hotel Bethlehem, where the Christmas City began, and wish for a peaceful holiday season—and better days ahead for our nation.

23 Must-Have Supplies for Apartment Preppers- When most people think of preppers, they picture people living in a house somewhere in the country. However, preppers can be anywhere, including small apartments in large urban areas.

When most people think of preppers, they picture people living in a house somewhere in the country. However, preppers can be anywhere, including small apartments in large urban areas.

The challenges of prepping for a natural or human-made disaster can be challenging for city-dwellers because of a lack of storage space. But the need to be prepared is just as great. When you consider the high number of people living in close proximity to you, the need may even be greater.

For the purpose of this article, we will examine what you need to have on hand in the event you are unable to leave your apartment for an extended period of time. These days, it’s not difficult to imagine situations that might make it unsafe for you to venture outside. It could be anything from a riot in the streets to a natural disaster.

Here is a list of 23 must-have supplies apartment preppers should have on hand.

1. Bottled Water

During a civil or natural emergency, your water supply could be affected. Store as much bottled water as you can, and consider purchasing a water purification method such as Potable Aqua.

2. CB and Ham Radios

If you don’t have internet or cellular communication, CB and ham radios are essential. A ham radio is for short-range communication between individuals, and you can use a CB radio for longer-range group discussions.

3. Fire Ladder

Depending upon how high your apartment building is, a fire ladder could be a life-saver if elevators aren’t working and stairwells are inaccessible.

4. Fire Extinguisher

Don’t forget about this crucial piece of safety equipment. Household extinguishers are labeled A, B, or C for their type of use. “A” is best for wood, paper, and cloth. “B” is for flammable liquids, such as cooking oil or gasoline, and “C” is for electrical fires.

5. Window Alarms

To discourage a break-in and alert you if one occurs, you might want to install window and door alarms. There are many choices on the market; here are a few wireless options to get you started.

6. Door Bars

Standard door locks might not be enough to protect you from intruders, so door bars are another consideration for your safety.

7. Blackout Curtains

Blackout curtains can eliminate someone’s ability to see inside your home both during the day at night when you have lights on.

8. Non-Perishable Food

Store at least a three-day supply of food that doesn’t require refrigeration or cooking. Examples are canned fish, crackers, dried fruits and nuts, baked beans, granola, protein bars, and peanut butter. If you have a baby or pets, don’t forget to include their needs in the equation.

9. Hand-Operated Can Opener

If the electricity is out, canned soup or beans won’t do you much good without a manual opener.

10. Battery-Operated or Hand-Crank Radio

Keep up with news and weather if the power is out and the internet is down with an “old school” battery-operated radio, or one you can power this one by hand.

11. Flashlight and Batteries

Have several flashlights in different sizes and strengths on hand for emergency lighting. Make sure you have enough fresh batteries too.

12. Candles

If the power goes out, you’ll be glad you had a supply of candles ready. Keep a lighter and some matches nearby.

13. First Aid Kit

You should be well-stocked in bandages, medical tape, antibiotic ointment, and other first aid supplies. You can be first aid kits online, but you’re better off building one yourself.

14. Towelettes

During the early weeks of the pandemic, these products flew off the shelves. They come in handy for clean-up tasks when water is in short supply.

15. Trash Bags

You’ll find many uses for trash bags in an emergency – rain poncho and temporary shelter are two of them — but there are many other uses for trash bags.

16. Portable Generator

Who says generators are only for people with big houses? There are many small generators available for apartment use.

17. Hand-Crank Cellphone Charger

Did you know there was such a thing? This ingenious device is a hand crank USB charger, radio, flashlight, and reading lamp all in one.

18. Portable Oven

If the power is out, you can use a small grill like this one for cooking on your patio or balcony. However, if you’d prefer to cook indoors, a small backpacking stove will allow you to cook some food and boil water. Make sure your cooking area is well ventilated.

19. Toilet Paper

During the early days of COVD, some people went a little bit nuts with the amount of toilet paper they stockpiled, but that doesn’t mean you don’t need it. The good thing is that you can squish the rolls down for storage.

And if you run out, there are many toilet paper alternatives. Don’t forget other necessary hygiene supplies as well.

20. Paper towels, Paper Plates, and Plastic Utensils

We all are trying to limit our use of disposables, but desperate times call for desperate measures. If water is at a premium, you will want to have disposable supplies available for your family’s use.

21. Five-Gallon Plastic Bucket With Lid

While we’re on the bathroom subject, a five-gallon bucket can serve as an emergency toilet. If your toilet is working, you can use these handy buckets for all kinds of other uses in an emergency.

22. Cash

It’s always prudent to have some cash on hand for use when you may not be able to use your bank cards.

23. Duct Tape

It’s small. It’s inexpensive. And it works for so many purposes. Here are just a few ideas for apartment dwellers in a survival situation.

  • Patch a hose
  • Write a note to adhere to a window, door, or wall
  • Make a sling
  • Use as a makeshift bandage
  • Remove splinters
  • Alternative for handcuffs
  • Mend clothing or shoes

Final Thoughts

You’ve no doubt thought of a few other things that pertain to your particular home and people in your household. We are living in very unusual and stressful times, so you may want to think carefully about a means of self-defense as well.

Next comes the challenge of finding the space to store your supplies. That’s the most challenging part of being an apartment prepper, isn’t it?

The Greatest Scandal Of Our Lifetime- Elites have ignored practical scientific approaches to the virus in favor of totalitarian lockdowns which rob us of our humanity and our health.

What if I told you that thousands of lives could be saved during this pandemic if we followed the science?

Instead of following the science, governments around the world are implementing the exact opposite of effective measures to combat the pandemic. Governments and health officials from first world countries are pursuing lockdowns and advising patients to wait until their symptoms worsen before going to the hospital seeking treatment. Sadly, this is the approach many countries have taken for the COVID-19 virus. Lockdowns are destroying lives economically, mentally, and physically, while the elites are becoming richer and profiting off of the destruction of the middle class and the poor.

Also egregious is the lack of an outpatient treatment plan for people who come down with Covid. In the NIH’s recommended treatment protocol, there is no recommended treatment for non-hospitalized patients. ‘Isolate in your home and wait until your condition gets so bad you have to go to the hospital’ is the NIH’s position. A patient’s treatment only begins once they are hospitalized. This is akin to using dial-up internet compared to today’s high-speed internet. It does not have to be this way. We can effectively provide outpatient treatment care to patients with the virus in a safe and cheap manner.

Many heroic doctors are focusing on the vital task of fighting COVID-19 in the early stages of the illness. Since March, there have been copious amounts of research, studies, and treatment of patients that have shown success against the illness. Antivirals, vitamins, existing vaccines, aspirin, exercise, sleep, and proper air filtration all play a pivotal role in preventing severe cases of Coronavirus in mild to moderate patients. Prestigious doctors such as Dr. Peter McCullough of Baylor University Medical Center in Texas, and Dr. Paul Marik of the Eastern Virginia Medical School, among many others, have devised home treatment or outpatient care regimens for mild cases and prophylaxis. There have been numerous (many peer-reviewed) studies which have shown that antivirals like Hydroxychloroquine and Ivermectin are effective in combatting the illness in mild to moderate stages. Simply strengthening your immune system with vitamin D, vitamin C, Zinc, and a Zinc ionosphere (Quercetin and EGCG) along with proper exercise and rest goes a long way in preparing the body to effective combat Covid-19. Also, the MMR vaccine could provide protection from the most severe effects of Covid as well, according to doctors. While we wait for antibody cocktail treatments and a potential vaccine, these other treatments must be strongly recommended and pursued by the general public, especially those most susceptible to the illness.

Masks, social distancing, and early effective treatments are the best tools we have to combat this illness. However, this is not the case in many first world nations, including the United States. Lockdowns are considered the most important way to slow the spread of the virus. This lockdown mindset is a totalitarian mindset. It is a mindset that rejects humanity. The more humane approach is that espoused in the Great Barrington Declaration. Protect the elderly and sick in their homes while the young and healthy return to society through measured social distancing. However, the elites in most governments hate this plan because they deny that early effective treatments and strengthening of the immune system can effectively combat the virus. Lockdowns show a disregard for humanity, and the unintended consequences will be felt for decades. There is a better approach than destroying our society and our humanity. It is the approach of the Great Barrington Declaration paired with the promoting of outpatient treatments for the virus. This is the only way for society to regain its humanity and stop the totalitarian mindset of our elites.

We are in a war with the virus. In war, urgency is a necessity. We cannot wait years for a double-blind randomized study of antivirals while thousands are being infected and being told to isolate at home until they can’t breathe and only go to the hospital when it is possibly too late. While businesses and jobs are being lost and lives are being destroyed, there is no excuse for government health organizations like the NIH to not recommend early treatment care. Dr. Peter McCullough said, “Medicine is both an art and a science. In this pandemic, we have focused on the science, in randomized trials, in a new drug development, and the body count has been through the roof. [What is needed is] clinical judgement, careful observation, being able to quickly adapt to new concepts.”

Treating COVID-19 too late is part of the lockdown mindset. By denying early outpatient treatment care, the elites are chipping away at our liberties, forming us into a submissive society where we follow everything the government says. The only problem is that the elites in these governments have been dreadfully wrong with lockdowns and not recommending outpatient treatment. Their denial of humanity and freedom to choose during this pandemic has been criminal, and we must never forget what they want and plan to do with their authoritarian mindset of complete ineptitude. This sordid tale is the greatest scandal of our lifetime.