Survival Guide for Dummies – Surviving the next ten years in America
by Don Koenig – 2010
It seems that some people are very concerned about surviving what is coming in America over the next ten years. This Survival Guide for Dummies is written to teach things that people might need to know in order to survive the next ten years in America should a crises similar to any of those listed below actually become a reality. This guide does not apply to those that are very elderly, terminally ill, living in war zones or that have self destructive habits and life choices.
A crisis could come in the next ten years for many reasons, but my top seven picks are:
* The basic assumption used in this survival guide for dummies is that there is good reason to believe that a time will come when the power will be out for an extended period of time and that natural gas and propane would soon become unavailable.
Lesson one – Water — You cannot live without water for more than a few days so water is critical. Those that live in the country generally have access to water unless they are living in a desert but they probably have a well. If your living in a city your water comes from a utility or some water company. They should have a backup power source after a blackout so you most likely will have time to fill your bathtubs and sinks. Make sure that you have good plugs. Even without backup it will take hours for most public water lines to depressurize. Most houses also have about 40 gallons of water stored in their hot water heater. There is a drain valve on the bottom of the tank.
Soda pop, juice, etc., is mostly water so you might want to have a few months stock on hand of whatever you normally would drink anyway. I personally would not buy bottled water. Buying bottled water when you have good tap water is a waste of money and it is for dummies. If you want to store some bottled water fill cleaned out old two litter soda bottles or gallon jugs with tap water.
If the water you have to drink is not clean (perhaps because you do not clean your bathtub) just put a couple of drops of household bleach per gallon and wait a few hours. If there is an extended water outage I think there will be pumper trucks around within weeks. You might also think about how you can collect rain water if things really go critical.
If you live in the country your water probably comes from your own drilled well. In that case you will need to buy a 220/240 volt generator to run your well pump. Just run the generator long enough to fill up some large containers like your bathtubs or the horse trough that you bath in. If you’re a redneck, that swimming pool liner in the back of your pickup will do just fine.
You will need to have some fuel on hand to run the generator. If you only run your generator every few days for 30 minutes to pump water into your containers, five gallons of fuel should last you months.
Water is also available from that pond out in the back forty or down in that creek bed even if that means you have to walk an hour. You also can use that big water puddle that has been so good at breeding mosquitoes all summer because it never dries up. There are filters available in camping stores that will filter any water and make it potable. You also can build a wood fire and boil the water you intend to drink for 20 minutes (have a supply of matches). Again, bleach will also do the job killing the germs.
Lesson two – Food — Not being able to get basic foods to survive on will probably be short term. Government does not like a lot of dead people laying around because dead people draw flies and do not pay taxes. Within a few months the people in charge will see to it that basic foods for survival are distributed. The Department of Homeland Security is preparing 15 regional centers for such a eventuality.
Food probably is not the critical element since most in America can go hungry for weeks thanks to that on-line food storage area that most people in America carry (A.K.A. our spare tire). Some basic life support will exist even after the worst scenario that you can think of. The critical thing is to have enough food to survive on until those rice and bean lines can be set up. I think three months food is quite enough unless you’re really planning to become the Lone Ranger living out in the wilds of Montana. If you tend to be the paranoid type you might be more comfortable with six months food but anything more than a few months supply probably will be confiscated anyway (when they do that house to house search with their food sniffing dogs).
All you really need to survive is a good sized pantry of canned, dried and packaged goods. Keep it stocked up with the stuff you usually eat anyway. Your beer and potato chips might qualify but you’re not going to be in the mood for any tailgate party. You might get a bit squirrelly after a while so have a nice store of canned nuts squirreled away somewhere. If they are vacuumed packed they will keep for years. Case in point – have you ever seen a malnourished squirrel where nuts are available?
If it is winter and it gets below freezing in the house, move the stuff that will freeze to the basement. If you do not have a basement put all the stuff in one closet and keep a few candles or an oil lamp burning there whenever it gets below freezing in the house.
Lesson three – Safety — Guns are a deterrent to certain criminals, so you might have one or three around. I don’t suggest you try to use them against whoever is in control of your area – be it the police, the military, or even some gang. If you are of the mindset to use guns against a much superior force you probably will not survive the next ten years so you can stop reading this survival guide now.
There are certain people in the inner cites that will loot and riot on any pretense. Then once the riots get going others will join in because taking care of number one has become a postmodern intercity code that overcomes the natural law of negative consequences. The best security will be to stay off the streets as much as possible and to form an alliance with any sane people that live around you.
Forget about trying to protect stuff like cars, big screen TV’s and even your money. Protecting these things might get you killed but they will be rather useless for surviving a national crisis in America. Within a week it is very likely that police and military will restore order by use of deadly force and within days there will be nothing much left in the stores worth looting and burning anyway. So the worst of the riots will last for days not months.
If you live in the country, a gun will be very useful for game and for protecting your home or your territory against bandits or some common enemy. I suggest a .22 rifle, a shotgun and some kind of high caliber rifle. Don’t forget to get a good supply of ammo.
If you are on prescription drugs get some extras and start rotating a few months supply.
Have a couple of flashlights and extra batteries. The LCD flashlights will shine for a long time on batteries but they do not put out enough light for some purposes. You also might think about getting one of those wind up flashlights from an Amish store. You also will need a battery powered radio unless you can come up with the bucks for the crank up powered radio.
Lesson four – Shelter — If you have a roof over your head you should survive the cold. Homeless people survive more often than not even without a roof. In cold climates you will need some good winter clothing. If money is a problem you can get second hand clothing in thrift stores for almost nothing. There even are free stores in some areas. If you have winter clothes and stay out of the wind and stay dry and you should survive the cold.
It is not going to get as cold in your house or apartment as it will outside. During the night time or when it is cloudy out it will be warmer if you are below ground level but it might also be damp. A better way is to put everyone in one room like the kitchen and seal it off from the rest of the dwelling. People put off quite a bit of body heat by just living. If you have the family hot head in your room, all the better.
You can use candles, oil lamps, alcohol burners etc., in small doses for heat and light while people are awake but be aware of the carbon monoxide dangers in burning some of these products. If people in the room start developing dull headaches and dozing for no reason that is probably the cause. It is time to air the room and save the heat for another time.
Cars loaded with three or four people will stay relatively warm. It might be wise to crack a window. Have a sleeping bags rated at 20 degrees F. or below for every member of your family if you do not have down or wool bedspreads. Don’t use un-vented heat sources at night or you might wake up dead. You can use those 99.9 percent efficient vent-less catalytic type heaters if you have the fuel.
If you live in a very hot climate you will need to rest in the heat of the day as much as possible. Do whatever you need to do that takes physical effort at night or early in the morning. If you are in a fairly dry climate and you’re really hot, put on wet clothes and it will cool you off just fine. If it is humid like the deep South find a breeze if you can. Otherwise try to imitate the family on those old Hee-Haw reruns.
Lesson five – Hygiene — People have survived for thousands of years without running water and you can as well. If you live in the city take sponge baths. In the country you might look for a water hole occasionally.
Your toilet in the city might work for a few days if the sewage is going downhill or they have backup but you will need to flush it with a bucket of water. If they cannot keep the sewage stations up you are going to be told not to use your sewage system. In that case, you’re going to have to dig a trench wherever feasible if the government has not already dug in to help. Keep in mind that the military in the field does not have flush toilets and they know how to take care of business. On the other hand, I have seen military people use modern toilets for two weeks on a base in Nam where the water system had failed. Believe me, you would not want to take your business there.
Lesson six – Develop a basic skill that would still be needed in a national emergency — The best security in a crises is having a skill needed by the government and by others. If you are involved in some way with the recovery effort you can be assured that you will receive your script and rationing coupons. If you have a skill needed by others you can be sure that they will exchange things they have for your service.
If you have no skills you might just become a good trader (not traitor). Many people make a living off of trading used stuff today. You just trade something that you got for a bargain to someone who really wants it more or needs that item right now. A lot has to do with knowing a good deal when you see it and putting in the time it will take to become the local trading store.
If you raise sugar, sugar beets, grapes, corn, potatoes or have a fruit orchard available it might be worthwhile for you to learn how to distill alcohol. Alcohol is a clean burning cooking and heating fuel, not to mention its well known medicinal qualities.
Lesson seven – Stock up now on some things to barter with —- Buy up extra stuff that you will eventually use anyway when that item is on sale. Think of products that will be in demand during a infrastructure failure and products that will last in storage for years. Just a few examples are common caliber bullets, alkaline batteries, spirits, pure or denatured alcohol, vacuum packed foods, toilet paper, matches, candles, insect repellents, women’s hygiene items, and plastic storage bags.
Lesson eight – Learn to grow your own produce and can it — A 30′ x 60′ well planned garden will keep you in all the vegetables your family will need for a whole year. Some things like winter squash and potatoes will keep all winter. Can or dry more than what you need until the next season. You can barter your surplus goods for other things or still use it the following year. Use only seed that will reproduce more seed. Let a few plants of each species that you want to plant next year go to seed. Then dry the seeds and store the seeds in a plastic bag in a dry place.
Lesson nine - Shop at garage and moving sales as much as possible —- The cost of many things you might need for survival will only cost about 10c on a dollar there.
Lesson Ten – Get a Bible and learn understanding about the truth found between the two covers — The truths in the Bible will help you to get through the storms of life. Although, I have listed this lesson last in this survival guide for dummies, it is by far the most important survival lesson of all. Hope of your salvation in Christ is more valuable than having all the stuff in the world. If for some reason you do not survive the next ten years in America you take hope with you that although you die you will continue to live a more abundant life with Christ in eternity.
Summary – Surviving the next ten years is not as difficult as those selling survival products would like to lead us dummies to believe. You can survive the next decade by just doing some common sense preparations. Your own ancestors knew how to survive without today’s modern infrastructure. They prepared for winter and they planned in advance for a possible crop failure.
For some reason we think living in modern times makes us more secure, but our total dependence on electricity and electronics makes us even more vulnerable than they ever were. So doing a small amount of preparation to deal with the unexpected is a wise course to take. As our world continues on its present path of insanity we should be aware that the unexpected should be expected within the next ten years.
Much of what you need to survive the next ten years should not cost you that much money. Most food products that you will need to survive are now sitting on store shelves. These are the same items that you will need to buy in due time anyway. So the money spent on extra food and common supplies will not be wasted. You really will just be filling a rainy day piggy bank called a stocked pantry. The items saved in that food bank will keep up with the real rate of real inflation and cost of living to boot. The money you have in the bank today will not, and any increase will be taxed.
Apart from the pantry items, the other things you will need can often be found at very low cost at moving sales, garage sales, flea markets and thrift stores. Used clothes can often be purchased for almost nothing. Other critical items can be bought used at half price at pawn shops and through Penny-Saver type ads. I bet someone will even give you a Bible for nothing, if you ask.
The key to surviving the next ten years in America is taking a common sense approach to prepare for the winter storms that we know are coming to this nation. We should see that it is late fall in our nation. So, it should be no huge surprise when we wake up one morning and the lights do not turn on and we find ourselves in a declared state of national emergency.
Don Koenig founded www.thepropheticyears.com website in 1999 after almost thirty years of independent study on the Bible and learning from many astute teachers within Christendom. Don created his website to write about Bible prophecy, biblical discernment and his Christian worldviews. Don wrote a free Revelation commentary ebook in 2004 named "The Revelation of Jesus Christ Through The Ages". The World and Church and Bible Prophecy section of this website was started in 2007.