Today, I’d like to talk about where we are now, where things are headed, and what we should be doing. No, it’s not meant to be “fear-porn” or doom-saying; it’s meant to be a realistic look. Time to take off the blinders of normalcy bias and take stock of the REAL situation.
No, we aren’t going to focus on Ukraine, there is plenty of that nonsense literally everywhere. We will touch on it in one aspect near the end, though.
The prudent see danger and take refuge,
but the simple keep going and suffer for it.
First, let’s talk grains. China is buying up grain as fast as it can, and just two days ago, Hungary announced a ban on grain exports. With the war in Ukraine, fully one-quarter of the world’s grain market is at risk at well.
Now, I know what you’re thinking, “But this is the US, we can cover our own grain needs.” Under normal circumstances, that is true. However, we’ve had two major fires at fertilizer plants in the US and there is a world-wide shortage of Urea (an element of fertilizer) already. These shortages have caused many US grain farmers to switch to soybeans, which don’t require as much fertilizer for good yields.
This means less grain produced domestically, at the same time less is available on the import market. Grain is also used to provide livestock feed, which will in turn lead to higher prices at the supermarket for beef, pork, and chicken. So, as you can see, we will be experiencing throughout 2022 and probably into 2023, serious food issues. We can feed our nation, but it will cost you a lot more.
To counteract this, first go out and buy canned foods and dry goods like beans, rice, and flour. Learn to cook things from scratch. It’s much easier to buy a loaf of bread than making it, but my entire time growing up I don’t think my grandfather ever bought one. It’s easier to open a box to make a meal but learn how to mix your own ingredients. You might laugh but ask someone under 25 how to make chili.
Buy and store heirloom variety seeds. Learning to grow your own food is a superpower and if you don’t start this spring, you may be hungry this fall. It may seem daunting, but I’ll remind you that US Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez was able to do it, so I’m CERTAIN you will too. Victory gardens were a key feature of food security during WW2, and they will be again. My Patriot Supply has a HUGE variety of seeds on their website. Use our affiliate link below (we may make a small commission here and on the Amazon affiliate links) and search “seeds”.
The other piece of your own food security is learning how to fish, trap, and hunt game. Also knowing how to process game into food is necessary. Learning to produce food is better in the long run than learning to store food.
West Texas Intermediate was trading at $115 a barrel on Friday. This is leading to $4-$7 a gallon at the pump across the country. This will only get worse in the short term. I know, the President said he’s secured a bunch of oil from Saudi Arabia, but that’s at best a 30-day supply, and at current prices, so it only PROLONGS the issue.
The price of gas and diesel gets factored into every product you buy. Whether it’s food at the grocery store, a new TV, or dinner at a restaurant, the cost of getting the product to you is passed on to you. Understand that it’s going to cost you more just to get to work, to bring home the same number of dollars, which will now buy you less.
How do we combat this? Well, growing your food and stocking a pantry with long-term shelf-stable foods allows you to spend less on food. I know I say it a lot, but if you aren’t filling up your car every night, you risk spending a LOT more on gas. We are seeing increases of 15-25 cents per gallon OVERNIGHT. Fill gas cans if you have them. Start getting used to walking more for local, short trips. Learn to enjoy sitting at home.
The FBI and CISA are issuing frantic alerts about potential cyber-attacks, and Ikea fell victim to one just the other day, impacting their ability to process credit cards. The warnings involve the financial sector, energy sector, and nearly every industry. There is no way of knowing which will be struck, so be prepared for power outages, credit and ATM systems to go down, and even oil delivery systems (like Continental). Have a communications plan, and it’s not a bad idea to have a few hundred dollars in cash on hand in case the credit card system goes down. Reminder – if the credit system is down, so are the ATM machines. Have the cash on hand NOW.
Here at the end, we’ll discuss the situation in the Ukraine, but only from a preparedness standpoint. In a few days, we’ll be releasing another “Lessons Learned” article. Today, I want to address the full court press by the media. The media is pushing for kinetic action (war) against Russia. Not only would this spur cyber-attacks by Russia against us, but it could lead to nuclear war. In fact, many in the media and in government are calling for a “limited nuclear strike” to convince Russia to back off. Yes, really. As if that’s even a thing.
This talk has led to Potassium Iodide being sold out everywhere and a renewed interest in Nuclear civil defense measures. I recommend the Civil Defense Manual by Jack Lawson, which has an excellent section on this. There is also excellent information at http://www.ki4u.com/.
The best thing we can do to prepare for war with Russia is remain aware of the possibility and to make your elected representatives aware of your opposition to it. Taking the other steps listed above for the other categories will help you in this area as well.
It’s time to put aside the “it can’t happen here” mentality and get to work on safeguarding and preparing your family for the rough times ahead.
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