The State of the Economy and Why You Need to Be Preparing
ReadyNutrition Guys and Gals, this segment is to give you a picture of where the U.S. stands economically on some major issues, as well as some advice on how to prepareyourself. There are a ton of things happening, and although most of the economic news is not trumpeted by the mainstream media, nonetheless it is still affecting you. The economy affects the way you work, how you shop, and the actual “worth” of those “precious” federal reserve notes you work so hard to garner…is affected by variables both seen and unseen during the day.
Let’s summarize some items of late that are important to keep in mind:
- The MERS mortgage fraud has managed to account for the loss of more than 12 million homes in the U.S.
- The U.S. is (as of this writing) $19 trillion in debt
- The U.S. is floating more than $250 trillion in unfunded liabilities
- The U.S. is facing $1.5 quadrillion in derivatives debt
- 23% of Americans are either unemployed, or they’re working in a job beneath their capabilities
As we have been seeing over the past 6 months, banks are starting to adopt “Draconian” policies to control the cash flow and keep depositors from making withdrawals. Bank of America and J.P. Morgan each owe $80 trillion to account for their shares of the derivatives debt, item # 4 mentioned above. Part of the problem is that these banks have shifted over their debts to other arms of their establishments in order to become shielded by the FDIC. This shift places the burden of their potential collapse onto the taxpayer.
The U.S. Government takes in about $2 trillion per year. As can be seen, this makes the burden just from these two banks alone untenable. In the recent UN conferences that took place these past two weeks, bankers and economists forecasted deflationary spirals, as well as warning of a “third leg” of the global financial crisis. The governments are currently scheming to raid pension funds, IRA’s, and savings accounts. Their plan is to place the taxpayers on the hook for the failed banks: keep in mind, these financial institutions benefited the government with taxation while the government protected them through what would have buried a normal business.
The major indices: the price of oil, the Baltic Dry Index, and the manufacturing base have all been fluctuating wildly. Slowly but surely, the prices of food and fuel keep on climbing, and we have not felt the full effect of Hanjiin, the 7th largest commercial container carrier’s bankruptcy on the shipping markets. All of the volatility points to inflation going through the roof and eventual bailouts for these large banks.
In the meantime, many of the other websites have been giving the advice of people removing their money from their accounts. I agree with this concept, provided that enough is left in to keep the account going, with just the bare minimum of expenses kept in to cover things such as rent or mortgages, and any car or other loan payments you may already have. Remember: cash on hand is worth face value until the cash has no value. So what should you be doing? How about these things:
- Precious metals: they don’t lose their value over a long period of time.
- Long-term food supplies: You may have enough savings set aside to buy MRE’s and other long shelf life foods. If you don’t have enough for these foods, then stock up on canned goods and dried goods.
- Barter goods: Think small/micro-marketing, such as bottles and tins of aspirin, sewing thread, first-aid supplies, personal hygiene supplies (soaps, toothpaste, toothbrushes, etc.), clothing…use your imagination to estimate what will be needed when the SHTF in your immediate area.
- Extra fuel: Some 5-gallon gas cans with Stabil added to preserve its longevity
- Means of procuring food: Notice I mentioned procuring. If you are fortunate enough to have a greenhouse, then by all means grow as much as you can for as long as you can. Other than that, you may want to stock up on fishing equipment and tackle, nets, and some animal traps.
- Antibiotics: there are several different sources, many of which we have mentioned on this site, such as pet and livestock antibiotics.
- Firearms and ammunition: enough said there.
- Fire starting equipment: always barterable, such as matches, flints, lighters, and fuel. Let’s also lump in candles and lanterns for that category.
Anything that you can use in the long haul needs to be obtained now.
Remember to pay in cash for your purchases, and don’t make those purchases in amounts that would raise suspicion. If you’re going for a case-lot sale, buy a few cases at different times of the day and use different stores, so as not to place yourself on the radar. When the banks collapse and the money is not worth more than the paper it’s printed upon, you’ll have about a 12 to 24-hour period that you’ll be able to unload it, but the time to obtain what you need is now, not tomorrow.
The planning ahead that you do starts now, not tomorrow. As the economy unravels more and more, it’s only a matter of time before the bottom drops out. The list above is certainly not comprehensive, and you have been exposed to more than enough lists to last you a lifetime. The key here is to take action in these areas, as you are well aware of what is coming. We’ll never be completely prepared, but the more active you are the more you’ll smooth out the rough edges so that the transition to a post-SHTF barter economy will be a lot easier than if you don’t take the time now. Keep up that good fight, and let us know how you’re fighting the battle with your comments, which are valued and appreciated by us and the other readers as well. JJ out!
Jeremiah Johnson is the Nom de plume of a retired Green Beret of the United States Army Special Forces (Airborne). Mr. Johnson was a Special Forces Medic, EMT and ACLS-certified, with comprehensive training in wilderness survival, rescue, and patient-extraction. He is a Certified Master Herbalist and a graduate of the Global College of Natural Medicine of Santa Ana, CA. A graduate of the U.S. Army’s survival course of SERE school (Survival Evasion Resistance Escape), Mr. Johnson also successfully completed the Montana Master Food Preserver Course for home-canning, smoking, and dehydrating foods.
Mr. Johnson dries and tinctures a wide variety of medicinal herbs taken by wild crafting and cultivation, in addition to preserving and canning his own food. An expert in land navigation, survival, mountaineering, and parachuting as trained by the United States Army, Mr. Johnson is an ardent advocate for preparedness, self-sufficiency, and long-term disaster sustainability for families. He and his wife survived Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath. Cross-trained as a Special Forces Engineer, he is an expert in supply, logistics, transport, and long-term storage of perishable materials, having incorporated many of these techniques plus some unique innovations in his own homestead.
Mr. Johnson brings practical, tested experience firmly rooted in formal education to his writings and to our team. He and his wife live in a cabin in the mountains of Western Montana with their three cats.