7 ACTION STEPS EVERYONE CAN TAKE
If you have seen the material on the Intro and Dig Deeper pages, you're probably ready to do something about it. You can go into action RIGHT NOW. Below is a list of the important things for you to have in place for yourself and your family. While all of these elements are critical in the event of a wide-spread financial collapse, most of them apply to general preparedness for any emergency. In fact, they are all excellent lifestyle patterns for your family's security and sense of self-sufficiency under all circumstances --- even in what we tend to call 'normal conditions'.
GET THIS BASIC INFORMATION:
a) See the explanatory films on the INTRO page.
b) Read the "Understanding the Origins and State of the Crisis" story on the DIG DEEPER page.
c) Read through this page (7 ACTION STEPS)
THEN START YOUR OWN INFO TRACK:
The information available to us in the 21st century is nothing less than astonishing. If you are still depending on the ‘nightly news’, the newspaper, or any other version of the MSM (Main-Stream Media, which some are now calling the 'Vintage Media') then you are in the dark and way behind. One of the best ways to get truthful, necessary and up-to-the-minute information is by having your own personal YouTube channel and subscribing to the channels of ‘broadcasters’ you learn to trust. You will get information this way that is almost impossible to find otherwise. We have listed some helpful sources on the VOICES page and the ISSUES page. You can check your sources at your convenience and then easily share this information with people you care about. Blogs and E-Newsletters are other vital sources of critical information. Learn how to get started now >>>
2) PRESERVE YOUR EXISTING WEALTH
GOLD & SILVER
Along with being informed, the next and perhaps equally important step is to buy gold or silver and acquire commodity provisions for your household for a ‘safe cushion’ period of time. This is a strange idea to many of us who have never thought of anything as money except dollars. But when you get your first silver or gold coins in your hands, you will understand the difference in the feel of real vs. paper money. The dollar is now only paper currency. The manic money printing underway is creating an ever greater threat to the value of the dollar. Cash, savings, stocks and anything based in dollars is in increasing jeopardy. We need to ask ourselves, 'where is reliable value'? True value lies in the things we use to sustain life. These are things we need in order to eat, clothe, shelter, and protect ourselves as well as things we use to produce more of what we need. In addition to these things, gold and silver have historically and universally been recognized as 'stores' of value, facilitating the preservation of wealth and trade. Paper currency will die, and your wealth along with it. Gold and silver preserve wealth and will carry it over into the next monetary system, whatever that comes to be.
Our country has been blessed with great prosperity, and as a result we have increasingly moved away from basing our economy on real value in favor of artificial value. Artificial value lasts only as long as the system it is built upon can sustain it. When we moved from a gold-based to a paper-based money system in 1971, we essentially put a death sentence on our currency, because no fiat (paper-based) currency in history has survived. When it collapses, the paper becomes worthless and all value reverts back to commodities.
Purchasing precious metals online is easy to do. While there are a number of companies out there with good reputations, some of them require minimum orders that put them out of reach of the average person. Although gold has dropped in price, it is still too expensive for most people. Currently, silver is very affordable and is widely recommended as being an excellent store of value.
You will find a number of online sources on the Resources Page. If you are new at this we recommend that you call and let them walk you through the steps which are very easy. You can get an idea of how the market prices silver and gold by checking out the Kitco Charts here --- gold, silver.
Because we are so used to being able to go to a nearby store and plucking anything we want off the shelf, the idea of stockpiling supplies of commodities can seem rather odd. But after you give it some consideration, it actually is a very strange thing NOT to plan far enough ahead to be prepared for a supply-system failure in our country. This could happen for quite a number of different reasons, economic collapse being only one of them. As the dollar loses value, everything based in dollars will go down with it, including savings, pensions, annuities, stocks, etc., and the price of commodities will rise, possibly rapidly. We do not give investment advice, but we suggest that you think carefully about where you do get your investment advice. Most of the people we respect and recommend will encourage you to have at least a portion of your wealth in precious metals and other tangible assets.
Many consider acquiring real estate to be a wise move. At the least, it is a very good thing to own or to arrange access to a parcel of land large enough to produce your family’s basic food and fuel needs (wood heat).
KEEP SOME CASH ON HAND
Remember that cash in the bank may become inaccessible. Banks can close. ATM machines can lose power or run out of money. In power failures and other circumstances credit and debit cards may not work. Unless a currency has completely collapsed into extreme hyper-inflation, cash on hand greatly increases your ability to make needed purchases, eat, travel and generally get along for a temporary period of time. An emergency stash of cash can range anywhere from enough to get you relocated to a safer place, to being able to cover your family's living expenses for a given period of time. If you build an emergency fund to cover a full year or even two, you would want to consider keeping much of this in precious metals rather than cash in the event of a dollar crash. Of course, the main issue in keeping precious metals or cash on hand is being able to secure them. You will find suggestions about doing this on the Resources Page.
3) BE ABLE TO SUPPLY NECESSITIES
In a severe crash, the availability of goods and services is lost or diminished. Just bringing this subject up makes people think you've moved to 'wacky world'. But stop and think about it for a moment. Little more than a century ago, pioneers and settlers in our country had to rely almost completely on themselves to provide their own needs. Many people throughout the world still live with this mindset today.
It is wonderful to live in the consumer-friendly society America has become --- but who says we are guaranteed to have everything we want waiting for us on a shelf in a nearby store? In any type of crisis, shelves will clear off fast and commodities can become very scarce or unattainable. While it is nice not to have to fend for ourselves like pioneers, we need to retain some basic memory of how to produce certain necessities for ourselves. This means having both the means and the knowledge necessary to make this happen.
Realize that you have become more dependent on the ‘system’ than you know. We all hope the 'system' will always function, but consider what will happen if it doesn't. Remember how helpless you felt the last time the power went out? What happens if next time it doesn't come back on? With a little planning and study you can become much more independent from the system than you would think. It is not only prudent, but it is invigorating to develop the ability to be more self-sufficient. You will love the sense of independence and security it brings.
We suggest that you start by stocking up on basic storable food supplies that can ensure essential sustenance for your family. The next step is to acquire equipment you would need in a power outage, such as a generator, kerosene stove, etc. As you work on the first two steps, begin developing a garden, even if you start very small. Container gardening can be done even if you don't have a yard. Once you have begun the process of growing some of your own food, you will find that there are some very efficient techniques for preserving your home-grown food. We're not talking about becoming an 'extreme prepper'. People can go off the deep end about anything. There is a certain basic level of preparation we believe everyone can and should do -- and that we should always have done and never have forgotten how to do! This level of self-preparedness can be done without excessive cost or effort. See the Resources Page for ideas and help.
LOCAL PRODUCTION SOURCES
They say 'all politics is local' and that is true for economics as well. As long as your local economy is ticking along, it doesn't matter if the whole rest of the world is in collapse --- unless you're tied into it. And it is very difficult today not to be dependent in one way -- or many -- upon the national and global economies. If you are depending upon Asian or South American produce to stock your favorite supermarket shelves, there are a lot of ways in which that supply can be cut off. But if you have established relationships with local producers of vegetables, meat, milk ,etc., then your food is not only far healthier and tastier, it will be within reach if the trucks quit running to the big box merchants.
As you begin to research local food production sources you will likely find that there are numerous growers very close to you. Visit local farmers’ markets. Meet the vendors and learn about their farms and local co-op groups. Through them you can learn of others. You can also network through local state university-sponsored agricultural extension agencies (there is one in every county). Local or regional farmer marketing associations exist to promote area growers and they are likely to have very complete lists of local farmers.
DEVELOPING A PREPAREDNESS MINDSET
Take the issue of personal, family and neighborhood preparedness into your own hands. Check out the Resources Page for ideas. Realize that most people assume that ‘someone’ out there in the government is ‘ready to respond’ in the event of any emergency. Stop and think that through. Emergency response in most of the U.S. is spectacular, but it is primarily designed for limited incidents. In any large-scale event involving many people, our emergency response crews will be quickly overwhelmed, and we will be left to our own resources until they can get to us. In some types of disasters, this can be quite a while. Just as an earthquake, tornado, flood, hurricane, winter storm or other natural disaster can affect wide areas and thousands of people, a financial crash can bring down whole systems of production, distribution, payment and delivery that we completely take for granted. Even when help agencies get to us, they only provide survival-level assistance for the most part. We are still very much on our own to fend for ourselves. Think in terms of being able to care for yourself and your family, and then consider pro-actively establishing preparedness plans with neighbors and local sources of provisions.
4) PAY OFF DEBT & USE A BUDGET
DEALING WITH DEBT
Inflation is already robbing savers of their dollars. In a financial crash or other unexpected crises, what seemed like manageable debt can quickly turn into a financial nightmare. This especially applies to debt in the form of credit cards or adjustable-rate mortgages that might be subject to a rise in interest rates. Even though mortgage interest has historically provided a tax deduction, this is actually is a questionable financial advantage. Owning your home clear and free is one of the greatest steps toward financial security. Given the uncertainty of the mortgage deduction in the future, and the benefit of being mortgage-free, it is a worthy goal to aim to pay off your house.
Some have suggested that if the dollar crashes, it would be to one’s advantage to have a lot of fixed-interest debt, since one would be paying less and less the more the value of the dollar drops. However, in times of currency crises governments have been known to peg interest rates to the rate of inflation. If this happens one would lose any advantage, and be caught in the same crisis as everyone else.
Besides our homes, another common source of debt is vehicles. The cost of automobiles has risen to the point where almost everyone has taken to financing these purchases. There is a way to turn this around and avoid having to go into debt for cars. You can escape car payments by developing a plan to make monthly car payments in advance to yourself, enabling you to get the negotiating advantage of paying cash plus the benefit of gaining interest on your car fund while it is building.
The one type of debt that can be beneficial is an appropriate level of credit for business that enables productive and profitable output. Even so, a general economic collapse can take down good businesses along with others. Your personal assets should be separated and protected as much as possible from your business debt.
GAINING FINANCIAL CONTROL
It is just a reality that many of us have never learned to budget or manage our finances well. The sooner we see this as a form of denial, the better. Let's be smarter than our federal government. The longer we spend unwisely and dig ourselves into debt the worse our problems are going to be. There are some great helps out there for ending debt and getting a handle on our personal finances. Pick one and get started! (See the Resources Page for ideas)
5) THINK AND ACT LIKE A CITIZEN-KING
Recognize that just as our forefathers threw off the monarchy of Great Britain, and took onto themselves the role of ‘Citizen-King’, we must come back to this reality. In 1776 we 'took' the crown from King George and divided it up among ourselves. We said we could rule ourselves and we set about doing it. The mightiest nation on earth was formed out of an understanding that we each had the freedom to run our own lives, BUT ALSO that we each had the responsibility to rule our own lives well.
Today, the idea of 'freedom' and 'liberty' in the minds of an increasing number of people means that 'I have the right to do whatever I want to and somebody else has the responsibility to pay for it and clean up my mess'. A democratic republic can never last with this mentality and it must be reversed. Our culture is showing signs of accelerating deterioration as a result of individual ir-responsibility.
Chaos can increase only to a certain point before the population will clamor for a 'strong authority' to restore order. Once this happens, we will have lost our treasured constitutional heritage to some other arrangement. This can happen by an obvious imposition of martial law, or in a more subtle increase of regulatory powers. A totalitarian government can take many forms. Our powerful elitist, bureaucracy-bloated federal government can become just as oppressive as the monarchy of old. Not just a few think it already has.
If we go slack in our diligence, watchfulness and personal responsibility there are powerful forces out there ready to scoop up our ‘citizen-kingship’ and take it for themselves. We encourage a re-awakening of individuals to the power of their individual citizenship to preserve their liberty and affect the direction of public policy. Read more about this concept at TheCitizenKing.com
6) HAVE A PEACEFUL HEART
Whatever time we have on earth, it is good to remember that life is short, but eternity is not. True wealth is ultimately found in spiritual peace. The early pioneers and settlers of America were driven in great part by a strong sense that their ultimate destiny was the next world, not this one. Much of American prosperity and success is a by-product of that vision.
As we talk about preparedness, we are not driven by fear and don’t want you to be either. We’re simply saying that we as a culture have grown to trust systems that can fail us ---- systems our ancestors didn’t have, and didn’t need, in order to survive and take very good care of themselves. It is easy to let panic and anxiety take over in unsettling times. While we think it is a very good idea to be prepared, we can delude ourselves into thinking that somehow our preparations are going to keep our lives going on forever. Last we checked, the human mortality rate is still 100%. A sense of peace about what happens in the next world has the effect of brining peace to this one.
The fact that life is short and that we will ‘soon return to dust’ isn’t actually a morbid thought if it is true that we have a Creator leading us into a greater future. Even if you are completely cynical or disdainful of this idea, you might appreciate the take on it that you will find at LifePlace.org. At least give it a look. Bear in mind that a lot of forces are at work to discount and dismiss the spiritual heritage that produced such incredible economic prosperity in America that came with a deeply-held belief in a great heavenly promise. Ask yourself whether you’ve really given it a fair shake. Follow through on this thought at LifePlace.org.
7) GROW INTO A LIFESTYLE OF FITNESS
We think that embracing the 'next life' leads to living even more fully in this one. One of the great spoilers of life is the lack of good health. Americans were fit at one time, because Americans spent much of their time actively working, and had a much more natural diet. Prosperity and technology have allowed us to spend more and more time in a sedentary mode, so we have lost the fitness that came to us as a by-product of active lives. This affects our ability to enjoy and do almost everything else, and sets us up for some nasty diseases.
When we were pioneers, farmers, factory workers and housewives working from dawn till dark, we didn't have to think about exercise. So as a nation, we got used to not thinking about it, without even realizing the consequences of not being active. Now flabbiness and obesity are at epidemic levels. On top of that, the processed foods that this modern age made so easily accessible turned out to be the next thing to poison, nutritionally.
The hardest part of fitness today is that instead of being forced to get it through necessary activity, we now must CHOOSE to be fit. We have to muster the discipline and effort to incorporate an exercise pattern and decent nutrition into our lives. Some people (but not nearly enough) are waking up to this reality and are taking control of their physical well-being.
You can change your thinking and work a pattern of fitness into your lifestyle in such a way that brings you to a great state of physical tone and flexibility. This is a big part of taking control of and responsibility for your own life. We’re not talking about intense workout programs, but patterns of life that are doable for everyone. You don’t have to be an athlete to stay fit and flexible. Learn how to get motivated, gradually get into shape and then maintain a personal pattern of fitness. We will be recommending a fitness website that is under construction and will be available soon --- check back! (meanwhile, see the RESOURCES page)