Friday, 9 June 2017

10:11 – It was 51.0F (10.5C) when I took Colin out around 0645 this morning, bright and breezy. It’s already up to 72F (22C). Barbara has a busy day today, including gym, supermarket, various errands, a doctor appointment, and a meeting. We’ll do more work on science kits today if we have time, otherwise over the weekend.

Email overnight from a woman who’s recently developed an interest in getting prepared. She’s been reading prepping websites for the last couple of weeks, and she’s utterly confused. She wants to prepare for herself and her husband, both in their early 40’s, their two high-school age sons, and her husband’s parents. She’s intimidated by the conflicting advice on various prepper sites, not to mention the cost of all of this. She wants to know what to do, specifically, to prepare herself and her family. Her goal is to be able to take care of them for three months to start with, and to do so without going into debt.

I told her that the first thing to remember is that prepping is an industry, and that all of the sites she mentions are pushing needlessly expensive gear and supplies to benefit themselves and their advertisers. In short, if a prepping site has ads or a site store, or even affiliate links, don’t trust their recommendations.

I told her her top priorities should be water, food/cooking, and sanitation (toilet paper!), along with drugs if she or any of her family were on critical prescription medications.

Water – they live on an exurban property with a pond so my first recommendation was to buy and store as many cases of bottled water as they have room for, buy one gallon of generic chlorine bleach, and buy a Sawyer PointZeroTwo water filter and a couple of 5-gallon buckets.

Food/Cooking – they have a Coleman propane campstove, so I recommended buying an adapter hose for a 20-pound propane canister and a couple canisters of propane.

As far as food, I suggested that they begin with the LDS Church recommendations and purchase the following, either from Costco/Sam’s/Walmart or from and LDS Home Storage Center:

Starches – 600 pounds of carbohydrates, any mix she prefers of white flour, pasta, egg noodles, rice, pancake/waffle mix, oatmeal, cornmeal, breakfast cereal, etc.

Beans – 100 pounds of dry beans, such as pinto, soldier, white, Lima, etc.

Sugar – 100 pounds of white granulated sugar or the equivalent of honey, pancake syrup, etc., or a mix.

Oil – 20 liters of olive oil, vegetable oil, shortening, lard, etc.

Salt – 15 pounds of iodized table salt.

Milk – 42 pounds (2 cases) of LDS non-fat dry milk.

Multivitamin tablets – Buy sufficient for each family member to have one per day. Store them in the freezer, if you’re concerned about shelf life.

That’s sufficient to feed her family for three months with adequate calories, protein, and fats, but it’s a pretty boring diet. To make all of this more palatable, I suggested she also buy, roughly in order of priority:

Herbs and Spices – Large Costco/Sam’s jars of whichever spices she and her family prefer. Buy a #10 can each of Augason meat substitute/bouillon in chicken, beef, or whichever flavors you prefer. Dried onion and garlic are both extremely flexible, so buy a lot of those unless you just don’t like them.

Sauces – you’ll be making a lot of casseroles and skillet dinners, so buy at least 90 jars of assorted sauces–spaghetti sauce, alfredo, barbecue, etc. etc. Keep at least a couple gallons of pancake syrup, which can also be used with oatmeal.

Meats – 90 28-ounce cans of Keystone Meats beef chunks, ground beef, chicken, pork, and/or turkey. This provides about 4 ounces of meat per day per person. If you prefer, substitute Spam, Vienna sausage, canned hams, etc. for all or part of the meat.

Supplemental cooking necessities – Buy several each of Augason #10 cans of egg powder, cheese powder, and butter powder.

Canned fruit/vegetables – contrary to popular opinion, you don’t need any fruits or vegetables for a balanced diet. They’re primarily useful for improving taste of bulk LTS foods. They’re cheap, so buy a bunch of regular-size or #10 cans of whichever you like. For six people for three months, you’ll probably want at least 500 small cans total or alternatively 70 or 80 #10 cans. The latter are available at Costco and particularly Sam’s Club, and are noticeably less expensive than buying the equivalent weight in smaller cans.

 

58 thoughts on “Friday, 9 June 2017”

  1. Two days ago the high was 96F, 90F yesterday and 86F predicted for today. 76F by Sunday then heading back up. Not typical June weather for here. This climate change is killing us so says Gov. Moonbeam, especially without the Paris accord.

  2. Yeah, that Nazi tRump is deliberately killing us all by bailing out of the Accord.

    To quote some guy out in Lost Wages, what a bunch of loser douche-nozzle fukstiks.

    Off to beeyooteeful White River Junction, Vermont. It’s a hard-looking town.

  3. Bad Rush ! Bad Rush !

    Rush was criticizing the girlie boys of DC this morning. He forgot the barren cat ladies of DC !

  4. Not typical June weather for here

    And here is ?

    I am getting old and my memory fails from day to day. Or, maybe that is hour to hour.

    EDIT: We are having a beautiful late spring in Sugar Land, Texas. Plenty of rain (my ponds and swimming pool are FULL). We have yet to hit 95 F much less 100 F. Except at @nick’s house, he seems to live in a urban heat island all to himself.

  5. I told her that the first thing to remember is that prepping is an industry, and that all of the sites she mentions are pushing needlessly expensive gear and supplies to benefit themselves and their advertisers. In short, if a prepping site has ads or a site store, or even affiliate links, don’t trust their recommendations.

    Can I make a small exception to that rule ? I like M. D. Creekmore’s “The Survivalist blog.net”. And he has good articles all the time such as, “Everything needed to prepare for a local disaster or even a total SHTF event can be found and purchased at your local Wal-Mart.”
    http://www.thesurvivalistblog.net/needed-prepare-local-disaster-total-shtf-event-purchased-local-walmart/

    And yes, he does have third parties selling crap on his website all the time. Mostly ammo, fish antibiotics, and survival stuff, just like the rest of them. I ignore them. I do buy his books though and skim through them rapidly

  6. ”’ they have a Coleman dual-fuel campstove, so I recommended buying an adapter hose for a 20-pound propane canister and a couple canisters of propane.”’

    Coleman Dual Fuel Technology gives you the option of using Coleman Liquid Fuel or unleaded gasoline. There are also Coleman liquid fuel stoves that use Coleman Liquid Fuel only. Looking at the Coleman website, all(?) of the liquid fuel stoves are “currently not available” so I wonder if they are being discontinued!
    For propane, you need a propane stove or a propane adapter that replaces the generator and liquid fuel tank on a Dual Fuel liquid fuel stove. The propane adapter works with the small propane bottles or with a hose for a large propane tank.
    I’ll try to report on the propane adapter I have when I get around to testing it. I would think that a specific propane stove would be better than an adapted liquid fuel stove. It is hard to beat the liquid fuel stoves with Coleman Liquid Fuel or with unleaded gasoline, in any case.

  7. I’ll second the reco for MDCreekmore. I immediately thought of him when you issued your blanket statement. His “10 things to do right now” and “10 More things to do right now” are a great start. There are several frequent commentors who put too much faith in foraging, and herbal remedies, but the “what did you do this week to prep” thread is usually a great reality check.

    And you know from the last time this came up that I’m contrary. You approach it from calories and bulk, whereas I approach it from meals.

    Your approach is probably cheapest, but mine isn’t too far behind. What yours doesn’t do is “eat what you store, store what you eat” which is a pretty good mantra, but only a guideline. It is a good “panic buy” to get them stocked with good long term, but only if they’re in a hurry. I’d consider it ‘iron rations’ and given that sugar and carbs put me to sleep, this reco would be several hundred pounds of stuff I wouldn’t eat without duress.

    My approach for “medium term storage, stuff you can pull off the shelf and eat for a normal dinner” is to stock breakfasts, and dinners, with lunch as leftover or out of extras. So one can veg, one dinner’s worth meat (2 cans chicken), one starch like can of potatoes, pouch of instant potatoes, or one cup rice = dinner for the four of us. With grown kids you might need to double that. You can add a can/pouch/pot of dried beans to each dinner to stretch too.

    That means – 3 cases mixed veg cans or whatever to make ninety cans. Mixed meats, in pouch, can, spam, and ham to make 90 meals. One bucket rice, or maybe 2 if you use it. Couple of the 9 packs of costco pasta, couple of the multipacks of costco spaghetti. Case of instant potatoes, various styles and flavors. Case each of pudding cups, mixed fruit cups, mixed canned fruit.

    Breakfast is pancake mix, oatmeal, dry cereal, a fruit cup, or eggs. Maybe instant hash browns. So count up the liters of frozen liquid eggs, (or now the couple of #10 cans of powdered), a couple of cartons of oatmeal, a couple of cases of fruit cups, and at least 4 boxes of our normal cereal (replaced as used.) Add in the shelf stable bacon in slices or the costco bacon crumbles for protein. Maple syrup that we use anyway, just 10 containers on the shelf and replace as used. Coffee as desired, but some instant, couple big cans in LTS, and whatever you normally use, just more and replace as used.

    Lunch can be a meal in a can, like chicken and dumplings, ravioli or other canned pasta, or rice with protein added. Add as many as you like, in flavors you like, or canned soups.

    I guess my approach is to fill up my pantry with food that is similar to what we eat anyway (maybe just the canned version or maybe stuff we don’t eat that often) and then replace it as used. This helps to rotate your stock, gets the family used to eating some of the foods, and means you don’t have a big expense filling the shelves with stuff you hope you don’t have to eat.

    For long term, grid down, bulk flour salt and sugar makes sense. But in normal times, we don’t use ONE pound of salt in a year, or 5 pounds of sugar. If we eat 10 pounds of flour it would mean a lot of baked bread in the machine.

    We do go thru a lot of pancake mix and maple syrup.

    Whoever in the house does the grocery shopping can figure out what you need for 90 days and start building toward that. Every family will be different in their normally consumed meals, and can build off of that.

    Anyway, I take your recommended list as what I’d want in long term storage food, for when S really truly HTF for a long term disaster and everything has to change. I am more inclined to stock for the sort of everyday problems faced by families like mine. Hurricanes, floods, job loss, extended illness of a spouse, didn’t have time to get to the store, REALLY needed to stay in to avoid epidemic/riots/etc. Those are the sorts of things that have you reaching into the pantry, making compromises of what you might like to eat vs what you’ve got, but mainly continuing on as close to normal as possible.

    nick

  8. And ‘what spook said.’

    I like to eat hot food. I’ve got LOTS of ways to use whatever fuel is available to cook. Given that a colman stove is ~$20, get one in propane for the convenience during grid up and camping, get a dual fuel liquid one for backup. Same for lanterns…

    Add a backpack stove for a car kit, a couple of ‘penny stoves’ or the ones that burn bars of fuel, or even tea lights or sterno cans. You can make a stand/ burner ring/ wind shield/ carrying case from a larger tin can, and use whatever you have as a heat source.

    n

  9. @nick

    Why don’t you post that screed as an article? I’ll post my comments on it.

  10. I stock much like Nick. After all, if you don’t eat the stuff, why buy it? I’m looking at you Mr. Canned Lima Beans and Ms. Mixed Vegetables.

    I have some Auguson stuff. I should get more and re-package all of it into usable portions. And use it. Mac and Cheese dinners and boxed au gratin potatoes mixes keep almost a year after expire date because the powdered mixes turn a bit rancid. If I used the Auguson stuff that problem would go away.

    Riceland brand rice and store brand pasta come from HEB. Ditto tuna. I haven’t tried Wal-Mart pasta. I have bought name brand tuna from Wal-Mart and HEB… identical labels but from Wal-Mart it’s all mush, worse than Hill County Fare. I like having a least a few chunks when I add a can of tuna to a box of mac and cheese. Perhaps I have a bad attitude but if the tuna is different, I’m assuming Spam (and pretty much everything else) will also be different.

    Velveeta or HEB’s version is handy stuff. Keeps _much_ longer in the fridge. Just tossing that out there….

  11. Add a backpack stove for a car kit, a couple of ‘penny stoves’ or the ones that burn bars of fuel, or even tea lights or sterno cans. You can make a stand/ burner ring/ wind shield/ carrying case from a larger tin can, and use whatever you have as a heat source.

    I carry a case of MRE’s in the truck when I go out of town. Plus a case of water. Plus a backpack. Plus stuff. Maybe a rifle and a couple of hundred rounds of ammo.
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Genuine-US-Military-Case-of-MREs-Menu-A-Insp-Date-2014-Factory-Sealed-/182600541858?hash=item2a83d726a2:g:Aj0AAOSwcB5ZLxFv

  12. Looks like James Comey is a leaker. Time will tell if he is a liar also.

    I think he’s a liar. After all, how can he get on TV and lay out all of the stuff Hillary did and then say “no reason to charge her” and not be thought of as a liar?

  13. This week, for prepping show and tell…

    I ordered a set of practice locks of various kinds to refresh my lock-picking skills. I had a rudimentary skill 27 years ago when I worked at a hotel. It is likely not surprising how many people travel with locked thingamajigs but forget the keys. My daughter wants to learn and I want to practice, but standing at my front door to do so does look a bit suspicious. Having the means to open locks without damage or detection is useful.

    I also realized I have an atypical habit when buying my ‘every-day’ shoes; I keep a new spare pair in a closet. When my daily-use pair needs to be replaced, I take the spare and order a replacement, and use the old pair as ‘gardening’ shoes, throwing out the oldest gardening shoes.

    I am not a shoe-horse, as my variety is within reasonable bounds and does not apply to dress shoes and such, and I distinctly do not enjoy buying shoes. My habit came about because I don’t like to spend my time shopping for shoes and clothes. My realization today got me thinking I will expand my practice to include my work and muck boots, at least to keeping a new spare pair.

    I will refrain from commenting on the shoe variety of my daughter, sister, girl-friend…

  14. “I will refrain from commenting on the shoe variety of my daughter, sister, girl-friend…”

    Ditto. Except for one word: Nightmarish.

    Back from the interview at the VA in White River Junction; 90 minutes chatting with a noob guy who’s only in his fourth week there but worked voc rehab for years before that in some other organization. He seemed OK and intelligent and I left feeling like I’m pretty sure I’ll get the deal. i.e., the VA will pay for my retraining as a gunsmith. I’ll know by Monday, he said. I believe he wanted to make sure I couldn’t go back to the corporate IT life and that my PTSD would preclude that, which I made clear, i.e., my anger and resentment at being laid off and basically kicked out of IT after busting my ass in it for years, etc., etc. and my hatred for PHB manglers and CEOs. That oughta do it. Plus, WTF, I’m almost as old as RBT, for petesakes!

    So I’ll be interested to see what the next step will be.

    Meanwhile I have my hands full tonight and this weekend on more cleanup ops and yard work here plus three years of tax returns. Wife should be back tomorrow night.

  15. Back in my younger days I had four pairs of heavy-duty walking shoes which I would rotate through on a daily basis. Because they got a chance to thoroughly dry and air out between wearings, the shoes lasted MUCH longer than they would have had I worn a single pair every day over the same stretch of time. Pretty sure the system would’ve worked almost as well with only two pairs, but back then I was doing a LOT of walking for exercise.

    A typical guy has two pairs of shoes, a black one and a brown one. The typical woman has AT LEAST a closet full.

  16. I have one pair of shoes which I wear for funerals and the occasional business need.* Two pairs of ankle-high boots, one winter and one summer. Three pairs of sneakers, for daily wear, gym, and yardwork, in order of decrepitude. Oh, and a whole pile of kung fu slippers in various sizes, which my wife brought back from China ages ago because she couldn’t think of any other present I’d want.

    My wife is … not exactly sensible, but not completely ridiculously over the top when it comes to shoes. Compared to my ex-wife and last couple of girlfriends, I really can’t complain.

    * And the occasional wedding, though I don’t go to many and most of those are pretty casual. In fact, I think the last wedding I wore shoes at was mine, twelve years ago, and even that was one too many. I suggested a nude wedding, to save on the cost of the bridal outfit, but noooooo, my then-girlfriend was having none of it. Sheesh. Women.

  17. “Looks like James Comey is a leaker. Time will tell if he is a liar also.”

    “I think he’s a liar. After all, how can he get on TV and lay out all of the stuff Hillary did and then say “no reason to charge her” and not be thought of as a liar?”

    OK, here is my conjectural speculation on the above:
    1. It is clearly a criminal act to intentionally provide those unauthorized with classified material.
    2. It is not obvious that Cankles provide such material to unauthorized persons.
    3. It is obvious that through her carelessness and/or her stupidity, that she mishandled such.
    4. It is Comey’s excuse that she did not intentionally mishandle it such that it resulted in a criminal offense.

  18. The problem we would have with RBT’s food list is that we can’t eat carbs in any quantity.

  19. I like a combination of Bob’s, Nick’s and Creekmore’s lists and priorities WRT to food and water, etc., storage. I would just cut Bob’s list amounts by two-thirds, for the two of us here. As it is, we’re at about a six to eight week level and I’m still beavering away at it in conjunction with our finances. We need MORE in all categories, however.

    Rain here this morning and then by the time I got about 80 miles south, it was partly sunny. Hit a few showers on the way back up but now it’s mostly sunny here, too, and we expect a (too hot for me) sunny weekend. Yard work galore.

  20. “buy one gallon of generic chlorine bleach”

    That made me try finding the info on how to use that to treat water for drinking. I’ve found an article that sounds useful but I’ll have to finish reading it tomorrow:
    Sodium Hypochlorite Dosage for Household and Emergency Water Treatment (PDF) :
    https://www.awwa.org/publications/journal-awwa/abstract/articleid/15941.aspx

    A curiosity: this could work in treating raw milk, perhaps? to preserve it a little longer…?

  21. 4. It is Comey’s excuse that she did not intentionally mishandle it such that it resulted in a criminal offense.

    Understood. But, it’s an excuse. “I didn’t mean to do it” by (for example) a drunk driver is also an excuse.

    The problem we would have with RBT’s food list is that we can’t eat carbs in any quantity.

    Yeah, for weight control, diabetes control/prevention. But if SHTF and we are down to eating grass or starve, I’m pretty sure bread, pasta and taters are going to be better.

  22. A curiosity: this could work in treating raw milk, perhaps? to preserve it a little longer…?

    Ugh. There is nothing like a good cleaning out from too much bleach in the drinking water. I know this for a fact as we made potable water at many of our plants and our bleach injection process was imprecise on a good day.

    I would read up on the Pasteurization of milk.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pasteurization

    I saw that the Romanian Prez was in DC today, navigating the swamp. Is this the guy who tried to pardon himself ?

  23. Our National Administrator met with the top Romanian guy today and did a joint chat or something.

    We’ll be selling the Romanians $300 billion in advanced weapons systems; means more jobs for Murkans.

    Kidding, just kidding!

  24. “Why don’t you post that screed as an article? I’ll post my comments on it.”

    Time mostly. and laziness, and I find it easier to respond than to create out of thin air…

    That said, this comment, with the few from the last time it came up could probably be cobbled together as an alternative view. The main difference is driven by the types of SHTF that we are prepping for. Your timeline is longer than mine. I mainly prep for the things I’ve already been thru, and the things I can see from looking around. I’ve only relatively recently (couple years ago, thanks to RBT and ebola) extended my timeline for food sufficiency to face hyperinflation, depression, economic collapse, pandemic, world changing sudden SHTF, and the long slow slide (in no particular order.) Those are the best reasons for LTS and bulk that I can see. For instance, no one is gonna be grinding wheat berries for bread the second week of the hurricane…but that canned meat will sure taste good on some instant rice.

    Gotta go, got movie night at the pool….
    n

  25. “A typical guy has two pairs of shoes, a black one and a brown one. The typical woman has AT LEAST a closet full.”

    Not that my last name is Marcos or anything, but most all rationally priced shoes in the US are imports. After a SHTF shoes and boots will either be exorbitantly priced or not available at all, so I’ve stocked better than a dozen sets of Caterpillar or Doc Maarten work boots that are my daily wear. A little ShoeGoo and some waterproofing stuff and I should be good to go until they fit me for a casket.

    Back in the day, working in a machine shop, I’d go thru surplus $30 jump boots about once a year, with a half sole and re-heel somewhere in that period. Finding a cobbler these days is a bit of a challenge.

    Socks, shorts and gloves are also items that can be had for not much now if you aren’t into silver impregnated designer labels. I assume most americans have closet loads of shirts, sweaters, pants and jackets.

    Re: Locksmithing. Almost exclusively in my AO, residential door frames are all wood. Prying the door stop molding away from the latch and hooking the latch got most of my more forgetful tenants inside quick enough. Hammer the molding back into place and Bob’s your Uncle. Of course my own door had / has 2 deadbolts, Door Armor strikes and a NightLock….

    Then there was the burglar who’s MO was to dress in a near cop private security uniform. He’d buzz the units from the lobby till he got in and took note of the no answers to find the units with no one home. He liked jewelry, coin jars and laptops, but did take a kitten once for his GF/lookout. Another manager friend of a much more high end complex was chagrined to find that she had let him in on one occasion. Oops.

    At any rate he pried the deadbolt thru the door frame double quick and was gone in no time. They cleared a couple hundred jobs when they caught up with him.

  26. WRT shoes: I should go through my half-dozen and determine what fits best and toss the rest to Goodwill. And then get really good, sturdy shoes or boots and maintain them until I’m fitted for a plain pine coffin myself. I have found it difficult to find a decent pair of old-skool sneakers that I can just hang around in here during the warm month. Or just inside the house. Meanwhile I’d love to fill several contractor-sized bags with wife’s footwear and take that to Goodwill, too.

    Should probably also stock up on skivvies, socks and towels. Also more tacticool operator pants, lol, so I can more evenly distribute my EDC load-out.

    WRT door security; got a set of that armor stuff and strike plates and deadbolts for the back door, but I’ve been procrastinating in the hope that it will fall apart soon so I can justify a whole new door. In any case I’m putting a storm door back on there. Once I know how to do that door, I’ll do the front door likewise. One of the positive elements of living here in the village is that neighbors keep an eye on each other; it was a neighbor guy who came over and told me someone had gotten into wife’s car one night. And if we’re gonna be gone for a few days, they all watch the house and we do likewise for them.

    Good to be able to defeat pry bars and brute force entries; not many out there seem to be slick lockpicking operators. Lotta druggies doing smash-and-grab.

  27. Re: Clinton emails
    There’s always title 18 – section f that snows intention is not required to be convicted of a felony
    (f) Whoever, being entrusted with or having lawful possession or control of any document, writing, code book, signal book, sketch, photograph, photographic negative, blueprint, plan, map, model, instrument, appliance, note, or information, relating to the national defense, (1) through gross negligence permits the same to be removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of his trust, or to be lost, stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, or (2) having knowledge that the same has been illegally removed from its proper place of custody or delivered to anyone in violation of its trust, or lost, or stolen, abstracted, or destroyed, and fails to make prompt report of such loss, theft, abstraction, or destruction to his superior officer-

  28. Yeah, Title 18, which we had to pay attention to when I was working for Uncle at nuke sites and NORAD and suchlike, not that I was anything but a flunky security guard bozo. I was trying to remember the “through gross negligence” phrase, and by that light, Cankles is grossly guilty and also a gross affront to humanity.

    A Mao-style fluorescent-orange pantsuit would seem to be in order while manacled for chain gang road duty in a nice summer state like New Mexico or Texas; life expectancy about a week, if that. Some quicklime in a six-foot hole topped by cement should do the trick, unmarked, so no hordes of idiot womyn supporters show up and make it a shrine or something.

  29. I’m happy that my door is a SWAT problem. OTOH, the hall wall is my dinette and is only sheetrock sheathed studs if someone absolutely insisted on coming in. The Habitat for Humanity place I visited in the ‘hood was equipped with a steel door and frame plus a security storm with it’s own deadbolt.

    My first place here downtown was a WWI era 5 floor walkup. I was burgled once by a feller who got in thru the milk door common to that vintage place. Not being as handy then, I had the ‘smith install 2 giant throw bolts on the milk door. The apartment door was a 2 panel thing with a mortice lock. I added a deadbolt and replaced the very pretty art glass upper panel with a sandwich of chicken wire glass, wood colored art paper and a plexiglas inner sheet. Eventually I came across an expanded metal grill I screwed on to the inside.

    When I was the manager and a bit more prosperous I had a 1200 line “program” that ran a motion sensitive X-10 home automation / security system. There was a siren in the hall, rotating light on the windowsill, strobes and other flashing lights inside and a phone dialer. Best was a walkman with a loop cassette that threatened to release tear gas on a countdown. Downside: the disarm keyfob battery life sucked. Every couple three months I was treated to a full power test when the disarm failed. 🙁

  30. Why not?

    I’m pre-diabetic, the wife has diabetes. Processed carbs (sugar, flour) are the enemy. We eat mostly protein and low-carb veggies.

    Processed carbs are, from all the current evidence, are much worse for you than fats. Much, much worse. Not only for diabetes, but heart disease.

  31. A Mao-style fluorescent-orange pantsuit would seem to be in order while manacled for chain gang road duty in a nice summer state like New Mexico or Texas; life expectancy about a week, if that.

    SCOTUS won’t let us do chain gangs any more in Texas. That stopped around 1980 or so. We used to have the chain gang cutting the road grass with hoes and the fellow on the horse with the mirror shades and the 30-06 rifle just down the road from here.

    And SCOTUS is getting ready to make us air condition the state prisons here in Texas. That will make those electric meters turn a little bit more. All because the 5th floor of the prisons gets over 130 F in the summer time. Where was SCOTUS when my son was serving Uncle Sam in Iraq the summer it hit 136 F and no air conditioning in his tent or his humvee ?

  32. Breakfast is pancake mix

    Not to be a pest, but…why? I mean, if you’re testing emergency stocks, then I understand, but making pancakes from eggs/milk/flour/sugar is not hard. I don’t know what mix sells for, but I’ll bet that making from raw ingredients is cheaper, and it surely tastes better. FWIW, I use a 1970’s vintage “Joy of Cooking” for basic recipes.

    Which reminds me of show on BBC we saw more-or-less by accident: A nutritionist and a cook come into someone’s house, to help them reduce their food budget. On this show, the family did not know that raw chicken was “floppy”, nor did they know you could make your own meatballs from raw hamburger. They bought only pre-prepped food that they re-heated at home. They even bought pre-prepped “baked potatoes”, like it’s somehow hard to throw a potato into the oven.

  33. “I saw that the Romanian Prez was in DC today, navigating the swamp. Is this the guy who tried to pardon himself ?”

    No, this is a good guy but with quite limited powers as President. The other guy, a crook, sat at Trump’s table during a private dinner just before Trump’s inauguration.

    “We’ll be selling the Romanians $300 billion in advanced weapons systems; means more jobs for Murkans.

    Kidding, just kidding!”

    On paper it says we’ll spend 2% of GDP in 2017 for defense, meeting the NATO requirement. In reality, I’ll be very surprised if that will happen. It took years until we managed to buy 12 second-hand F16 fighters (from Portugal). There are plans, better let’s call them wishes, to buy another 36 F16 fighters in the next years, and eventually going for F35. Other wishes include buying Patriot missiles for like $4 billion, buying a couple of warships (from a Dutch company who would build them in Romania), buying armor vehicles, and so on…

    Our ruling Party (a crooks Party) is very busy increasing wages for the public functionaries (voters) doubling them in just a few years. And cutting taxes. So, you see, the money are gone already. The government investment in infrastructure is at the lowest in 10 years. We do have a 5% GDP economic increase but that is just unsustainable. And the 3% GDP limit for deficit imposed by EU( to all its members) is pushed to the maximum. To conclude, we are spending 3% more than we produce (hence more debts) without building anything with that money, anything that could bring more money in the future or cut costs. Stay tuned for the soon-to-come crisis.

  34. One reason to use pancake mix rather than making from scratch is batch size. I’d stir up single pancakes from mix for my kids when they were younger. Can’t really do that from scratch with a standard recipe, and it would be a massive pain even if I had powdered whole eggs.

  35. “Not to be a pest, but…why? I mean, if you’re testing emergency stocks, then I understand, but making pancakes from eggs/milk/flour/sugar is not hard. I don’t know what mix sells for, but I’ll bet that making from raw ingredients is cheaper, and it surely tastes better. FWIW, I use a 1970’s vintage “Joy of Cooking” for basic recipes.”

    The last time we bought Con-Agra bread flour at Costco it was $0.25/pound ($12.50 per bag.) I order Krusteaz pancake mix from Walmart for $7.50 for a 10-pound bag. So, three times as much.

  36. “I’m pre-diabetic, the wife has diabetes. Processed carbs (sugar, flour) are the enemy. We eat mostly protein and low-carb veggies.

    Processed carbs are, from all the current evidence, are much worse for you than fats. Much, much worse. Not only for diabetes, but heart disease.”

    I’m sorry to hear that. I also eat a much higher proportion of animal proteins and fats than average. In terms of calorie count, I’m probably close to an even split between the three.

    Just as a point of reference, according the the USDA, the average American in 2000 ate:

    199.9 pounds of grains

    279.4 pounds of fruits, including juices

    428.3 pounds of vegetables

    32.4 pounds of cheese, 27.8 pounds of ice cream and other frozen dairy products, 12.8 pounds of butter and margarine, 12.6 pounds of dry, evaporated, and condensed milk, and about 24.4 gallons of liquid milk, cream, and yogurt.

    250 eggs (directly and in prepared foods)

    152.4 pounds of caloric sweeteners, primarily table sugar and high-fructose corn syrup.

    61.7 pounds of added oils and fats, not including butter and margarine.

    195.2 pounds of meat

  37. Cool reference, I’ll have to look at it in depth, but I’ll point out the average american is obese, by their definition too. Some are grossly so.

    Besides putting me to sleep, carbs and sugar (from flour/pasta/rice) add fat to my belly.

    Low carb prepping is esp. hard and I ack that I’ll be eating more carbs than I would like. I know how my body reacts, and will plan any activities around the reaction. IE. no driving after eating.

    n

    more later, but busy day here.

  38. I’m pre-diabetic, the wife has diabetes. Processed carbs (sugar, flour) are the enemy. We eat mostly protein and low-carb veggies.

    Processed carbs are, from all the current evidence, are much worse for you than fats. Much, much worse. Not only for diabetes, but heart disease.

    @ECH have you seen this Richard K. Bernstein video or read any of his books?

  39. Karl Denninger has written extensively about his own low carb journey, with references.

    The history of the USDA and the Food Pyramid is full of hucksters, frauds, and pay for play. I now consider the evidence of my own eyes and think of the food pyramid as a great guide for what NOT to eat.

    Just ask one question. Is the population more healthy or less, fatter or thinner, since the adoption of the USDA guidance? (granted that most individuals don’t even care what the guidance is or what labels say, in aggregate, what does the population look like?)

    n

  40. What has been done in the name of “nutrition science” is criminal. The New York Times published this article about how the sugar industry paid in the 1960s to have researchers deflect the blame on heart disease from sugar onto fat. The Guardian has the story on how John Yudkin was made a pariah in the scientific community for publishing a book blaming sugar for heart disease instead of fat. He was accused of taking money from the beef and dairy industry by the sugar industry and a bunch of frauds pretending to be nutrition scientists. I wonder how many of the frauds were on the sugar industry payroll?

  41. Anyone who calls himself a “nutrition scientist” or similar is by definition fraudulent. There’s no science there and no prospect of there being any, if only because it’s unethical and illegal to experiment on people. Depending on self-reported composite “data” that spans decades isn’t science. It’s woo.

    I’ve always eaten exactly what I want to eat regardless of the “expert” advice of the day.

  42. Incidentally, Nick, I think part of the disagreement between us is that you have no real idea of what you eat. For example:

    “But in normal times, we don’t use ONE pound of salt in a year, or 5 pounds of sugar. If we eat 10 pounds of flour it would mean a lot of baked bread in the machine.”

    Among the four of you, you probably consume about 28 pounds of salt per year. The fact that you don’t keep it separately doesn’t matter. It’s in the foods you eat. If it wasn’t, your family would all be dead. Salt is another thing that’s been demonized. Ignore the recommendations from the authorities, medical or otherwise. A recent study, which WAS scientific established that the average person consumes about 3,400 mg of sodium per day. That translates to 8.64 grams of table salt/day, or 3,155 grams/year. And that’s actually lowish relative to optimum sodium consumption. Doubling that to 7,000 mg of sodium per day has little to no deleterious effect on health. Reducing it to the often-recommended 2,500 mg/day let alone the also recommended 1,300 mg/day is associated with significantly worse health outcomes. The amount of table salt I recommended storing (15 pounds = 10 pounds/person-year) is slightly above average consumption. I recommended that amount because I suspect in a SHTF scenario, the average person is going to sweat a whole lot more than they do now.

    “And you know from the last time this came up that I’m contrary. You approach it from calories and bulk, whereas I approach it from meals.”

    Actually, I approach it completely from a meals perspective, including detailed menus with annual counts. I start by setting a goal for carbohydrates, proteins, and fats and then translate that to actual meals. For example, I might assume we’ll have pancakes for breakfast three times a week, at a quarter pound of flour or pancake mix per person per meal. I then multiply all ingredients by the number of times we’ll have that meal in one year multiplied by the number of people. The final figures I give are based on those initial calculations.

  43. There’s no science there and no prospect of there being any, if only because it’s unethical and illegal to experiment on people.

    You can do experiments on people if they are carefully designed. It’s done for drugs and surgical procedures all the time, after the animal trials are done.

  44. Bah. The US has tens of millions of welfare parasites and illegal aliens. There’s no reason not to do human experimentation.

    (To the extent that members of those groups count as human. They probably close enough, a different subspecies, homo nonsapiens parasitiens.)

  45. Yes, you can do controlled trials, but that’s not experimenting on people. The key difference is that all controlled trials are intended to verify that the action you’re taking benefits the subjects.

    An example of an experiment would be to establish accurate MLDs for various toxins by taking a population of 10,000 subjects or whatever, dosing them with various levels of the toxin, and then recording morbidity and mortality. The last time anyone did that on any significant scale, they had the Doctors’ Trial and hanged the offenders.

  46. @SteveF

    Personally, I agree. I can think of any number of child molesters, rapists, spammers, politicians, etc. who would be good test subjects. And we could run large-scale experiments because we wouldn’t run out of candidates.

  47. I think everyone has missed the truth about salt. First, a certain amount of salt is necessary for health. On the other hand, for one half of the US population with high blood pressure, eating salt makes high blood pressure worse. I read that and wondered why one half and not the other? Then I read what happens if a normal, healthy person eats “too much” salt. The answer is your kidneys filter out the extra salt, and the salt winds up in your urine. So a normal healthy human body naturally regulates the sodium to a healthy level. If you have bad kidneys, and you eat too much salt, your kidneys can’t filter it out, so your blood pressure goes up.

  48. Yes, you can do controlled trials, but that’s not experimenting on people. The key difference is that all controlled trials are intended to verify that the action you’re taking benefits the subjects.

    Actually the last experiments on people were done in this study published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 2010. Here is a New York Times article documenting the findings of the Office of Human Research Protections that the risks of the study were not sufficiently communicated to the parents of the research subjects.

  49. “But in normal times, we don’t use ONE pound of salt in a year, or 5 pounds of sugar. If we eat 10 pounds of flour it would mean a lot of baked bread in the machine.”

    I guess what I meant to say was “We don’t eat that much from the pantry or stocks in a year.” Since I’m the one buying it, I’m pretty sure of the usage, although I’ll allow that it might be double if we’ve made bread and baked at the holidays.

    Since I’m storing processed food (although as minimal as possible, when it’s not meals or mixes) I’m getting the salt we eat normally in the course of eating the stored food. IIRC in Alas Babylon, lack of access to salt turns out to be their biggest problem. Since the ocean is a short distance away, civilization falls and maybe I’ll become a salt trader. I did add 40# of salt to the pile, and have several boxes of kosher for cooking use, and a couple of cartons of iodized for the shakers, so I have salt in LTS. It’s WAY too useful to eat…. and in a collapse to late 1800’s level, you’d want hundreds of pounds yearly. There is just no way the average family will eat that much from stock short of eating 100% from bulk food. The thing about salt is it is stupidly cheap, if you have space there is no reason NOT to have it, but it’s a shelf filler in all but the most extreme and long lasting disasters.

    I agree that salt and fat are demonized. I eat high salt, high fat, low sugar diet, have slightly low blood pressure, normal cholesterol (another meaningless measure), normal weight and close to normal body fat. I’m better with that diet in that I feel more energy, and lose fat rather than add it.

    I’ll postulate that we’ve been running an uncontrolled experiment on people since at least the 50s and the result is plain to see……

    n

    (oh, why pancake mix? convenience and the ability to make exactly the amount needed. The cost is still minimal and the saving in mess and hassle is worth it.) Besides, baking mixes have other uses too.

  50. That’s the other thing. We don’t store much in the way of prepared meals. Enough to get us through a short period when we don’t want to cook, but primarily we store components. A pound of canned meat, flour, rice, etc. is very flexible. You can use components in any of many combinations to make different meals. Conversely, if you have a #10 can of FD beef stroganoff, all it can ever be is beef stroganoff.

    Interesting article here:

    http://www.askaprepper.com/11-food-storage-lessons-learned-wwi/

  51. @ech said:

    Why not?

    I’m pre-diabetic, the wife has diabetes. Processed carbs (sugar, flour) are the enemy. We eat mostly protein and low-carb veggies.

    Processed carbs are, from all the current evidence, are much worse for you than fats. Much, much worse. Not only for diabetes, but heart disease.

    I have been living with Type II Diabetes for over 20-years. Minimal medication. Finding the diet of real food that works for you is key IMHO. Also doing as much exercise as possible is important.

    There are too many experts and studies that have no long term credibility. You must have an open minded doctor (VERY HARD to find and keep) and not be chasing butterflies.

    In fact, in all this medical/physical/health you must educate yourself and not fall for the latest fad.

    My base is variety, balance, and moderation.

  52. On the other hand, for one half of the US population with high blood pressure, eating salt makes high blood pressure worse.

    No, it doesn’t unless you are a salt-sensitive hypertensive, and that’s 25% or less of the hypertensives in the US. However, it clusters in people of African descent, with over half of African Americans with hypertension being salt-sensitive. It’s 20% or so of the white population with hypertension.

  53. I have about 12 pairs of R. M. Williams elastic sided boots. Different colours, different conditions (from Sunday best to garden grade), two sets of sand shoes (99% of the time) and a couple of others, hardly worn.

    As far as I’m aware it is just about impossible to buy hash browns cooked in lard here. Everything is cooked in “healthy” oils that don’t taste nearly as good… 🙁

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