Free - Beyond Collapse

Monday, November 25, 2013

Weapons of War Across New York State Will Be Used On Citizens

Post by NewAmericaNow

Historically speaking, economic hard times bring with them insecure governments and leaders that call for and necessitate more control over the people they are entrusted to serve. Despite well established personal freedoms, during economic hard times and times of war, laws are passed at a feverish pitch, all in the name of prevention of evil and protecting the people (especially the children), from themselves or from the shadowy spector of terrorism.

Freedoms of belief, speech, communication, expression, association, privacy and protest are demonized as individual selfishness and dangerous, if they do not serve the purposes of the ruling power structure. The justice system is usually removed from the hands or the people and moved behind closed doors to be determined by a few in secret under the guise of national security. The equality of people is legislatively destroyed to create a special ruling and enforcement class that has the blessing of that power structure to use violence and cohersion over the masses they wish to control. Under these conditions, indefinate detention without charge or fair trial become more and more justifiable by the power elite. The right to individual self defense is usually the one right that is the recipient of the greatest destruction and increasingly bestowed preferentially as a right acceptable only to the enforement and elite class. Those who expose the immorality of all these actions are severly punished as traitors. Military commanders who have issues following questionable orders are relieved of duty and replaced with commanders more willing to comply. The final piece of the puzzle is usually militarizing the community enforcers with the tools of war.

Thank God we live in America, where those things could never happen. While Stalin, Hiltler, Mao and Pol Pot are all examples of the above, it takes a special kind of denial not to see that these things are happening today. Today, an ABC news affiliate, writes about how how 165 MRAP trucks, which are 18-ton, armor-protected military fighting vehicles with gun turrets and bulletproof glass that were once the U.S. answer to roadside bombs during the Iraq war, were distributed nationwide to local police and sheriffs dept. In New York State alone MRAPs have been delivered to

Albany County Sheriff's Department
Warren County Sheriff's Department
Jefferson County Sheriff's Department
Steuben County Sheriff's Department
Sullivan County Sheriff's Department
Nassau County Police
Plattsburgh Police
Hamburg Village Police

Police departments statewide have also acquired almost 150 other trucks and Humvees, a dozen of them armored, over the past two years.

While the enforcment class and much of the mainstream media, who are nothing more than the propaganda wing of the ruling class, justify this militarization, the facts remain that Americans are 8 times more likely to be killed by police than terrorists. Furthermore remember, these military items being given to the police are not free. These items are very expensive and our hard earned tax dollars paid for these things. Is this what you had in mind for that money? Is this why you convince yourself that taxation through cohersion of others is good or was their a higher purpose for taxation? 

Remember, the cheese is always free in the mouse trap.

Politicians and lawyers are usually the butt of jokes regarding their immorality and truthfulness but somehow, those on OUR team are held up as saviors and their promises believed without question. When their promises are broken, blame is always placed on the other team or deflected entirely. I hate to break it to those liberal Democrats and conservative Republicans, but both major parties are just as guilty in their deception of the people for their ownpersonal gains. Powerful positions always attract people who would abuse that power.

We must always remember....ultimately, power always corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. We as a society have been duped. Being selfishly myopic, we have given our governmnet the power to bully people we do not agree with for some utopian delusion of common good. Did we ever consider that this power over other people, would ever be used against ourselves? Did we ever think that such power, to control the people, would ever be used by evil people against us? Did you ever consider electing the wealthy to take from the wealthy and give to the poor would somehow eradicate poverty or make us somehow equal in our poverty? The road to hell is always paved with good intentions.

Perhaps many who read this are fully aware of what is happening but shrug their shoulders and say to themselves, "There is nothing that I can do, so why bother?". I am here to tell you, if you and we as a society don't start doing something about it, now, however small, you and your family will suffer the consequences.

So what can we do? First and foremost, never forget that knowledge is power. Knowledge of the power we still possess as people is empowering. The power to educate others, now through social media, thoughtfully and not critically. Alienating people through blame does nothing to open and free minds. Educate people about history, liberty, responibility and solutions. Solutions like jury nullification, writing editorials in town papers, attending town meetings, and engaging people in coversation and encouraging them to act to nullify laws that infringe on freedoms. Most importantly, do not comply with anything that is personally repulsive.

Until a critical mass is reached, nothing will change. Freedom does not require a majority, only a determined few. Change is sometimes a slow process, but with greater participation and determination, change can happen overnight. Let us all work toward that goal and ensure the right and capacity of people to determine their own actions. There is a great possiblility that things do not change in time for the better and a national crisis develops as a consequences of our social apathy. Take steps now to have at least the basics you will need if social upheavals become a reality. We the people who are paying attention, shall hope for the best but prepare for the worst. May we reach that critical mass in time.


Wednesday, November 20, 2013

The Threat From the Military and Secret Police

Guest Post by Jack D. Douglas

Sacred Monarchs have been overthrown by military leaders throughout all 5,000 years of statism. Caesarism is ancient. Bonapartism is the modern version of Caesarism. We see it happening every day in the world’s media. The Egyptian Army and secret police just overthrew the first elected, democratic government in Egypt’s history. (I believe for many reasons the CIA is behind this and supplies the vital war materials and money and intelligence to the Egyptian Army, but the U.S. government is openly against the take-over in the Media.)

The vast secret police armies and their immense militias of former agents and contractors, about 5,000,000 of whom have secret clearance in the U.S., are far more dangerous to freedom and democracy and legitimate government than the professional military, especially when they have heavy weapons and Special Ops of their own, as the Gestapo, KBG, and CIA have had. Putin moved up to totalitarian power by combining power from the KGB, MVD, and Red Army. He pretends to be an “elected, constitutional” leader, but he is a modern Caesar Augustus, total ruler behind a front of republican government that is ultimately powerless. The Bushes did the same in the U.S.

The first real coup at the presidential level in the U.S. was the military-CIA coup during Iran-Contra. I think the military guys clearly took over and did what they wanted to do. Bush I, the CIA Director who decided to become Vice President and then President was almost certainly the point man running the coup, not Admiral Poindexter, et al. Reagan was out to lunch. The Special Prosecutor said in his book on it that he ran into Stone Walls in all directions–protecting Bush, the CIA, the Admirals and Captains, etc.

Patton and MacArthur were continually creating their own “orders.” General Eisenhower and the Dulles CIA brothers conspired to start WWIII–the Nuclear Cold War with Russia and ran assassination conspiracies around the world. They overthrew Iranian democracy and rulers and those in other nations. They murdered rulers from the Caribbean to Vietnam. JFK and his whole entourage kept finding the military were doing their own thing in the Cuban Missile Crisis and found it extremely difficult to stop them. The FBI-CIA were up to their necks in the JFK murder and worked closely with Oswald for years when he was a double agent.  J. Edgar ran his own secret police at the secret core of the FBI and no president could stop him. The military and CIA hid the truth about Vietnam and fed DOD and the White House vast reams of statistical lies in body counts, etc. Dereliction of duty became treason in fact. When the CIA-FBI destroyed Nixon with their Watergate Conspiracy, all run by CIA-FBI agents, Nixon finally surrendered power secretly to a General. Clinton, Bush I, and Barry Soetero have been military-secret police front men. The military got all the wars they wanted and lost them all. The CIA is doing whatever it wants.

I don’t know specifically what is happening in these on-going purges of the military, but it looks like the secret police are getting rid of the top people who might oppose their total power, like the heads of ONI who are their main  intelligence competitors [along with Army Intel., NRO, etc.], the top Generals, etc.
The military and secret police have been running things at the top in a loose, complex alliance for decades. Now they seem to be struggling for power in the usual ways used by totalitarians, using laws to purge enemies, etc. The same kind of political purge is going on in China now. It’s SOP.

If the military gives up and marches off to the prisons and old-age homes, the secret police will reign supreme. I think the military have been fighting back since the purge of the Generals and more and more of the Navy.

The Secret Police need heavy weapons and masses of boots on the ground. The CIA has developed its own Special Ops and murder squads. It’s likely some of the military Special Ops forces are working with the secret police, as the SS did in Germany (as Hitler planned they would do in such a conspiracy by the Wehrmacht General Staff) and special units of the military did in Russia around Moscow when there was any threat of Bonapartism, as they called military take overs, Bonaparte being the classic example. But many of the Special Ops seem angry at being run by the CIA, as in the SEALs attack in Pakistan.

I think the intelligent people know the System is going to totally implode. It imploded at the top after Lehman in one weekend when the whole top of U.S. finance went down. This time it will be a general meltdown of finance. They will impose martial law. They are testing it out in huge exercises like that at Boston. I think they are struggling for control of that total power to come. Barry is not even in the loop.
The standing, professional military are always loyal to reigning regimes, until the day they take over. Caesarism is hardly new. That’s why the Founders were desperately against a professional military force and would have died fighting secret police.
Jack D. Douglas [send him mail] is a retired professor of sociology from the University of California at San Diego. He has published widely on all major aspects of human beings, most notably The Myth of the Welfare State.
Copyright © 2013 by Permission to reprint in whole or in part is gladly granted, provided full credit and a live link are given.

Monday, October 28, 2013

American Blackout 2013

National Geographic American Blackout: 

No phones. No lights. No running water. What would you do if the whole country went dark and you didn't know if or when the power would be coming back?

Two Forces And The Destiny of the US Government

Guest Post by James H. Kunstler of,

In these climax years of industrial technocratic society, two opposing forces shape the destiny of government: the desperate effort to control everything versus the decline of the ability to carry out that effort. The result will be the loss of legitimacy and the collapse of government from the highest levels, moving downward until the real power to make anything work re-sets at a feasible and appropriate level — probably very local. This dynamic is seen very clearly in three spectacles du jour: the “national security” (spying) mess, government-sponsored accounting fraud in finance, and the ObamaCare rollout.
As history develops, people do things for the simple reason that it seems like a good idea at the time. Computer tech made it possible for bureaucrats and military apparatchiks to invade the privacy of everybody, but in the end it only had the effect of embarrassing the perpetrators and eroding a big chunk of the US government’s legitimacy. The attempt at maximum control will eventually lead to maximum resistance and, quite possibly, some sort of political revolution, perhaps starting with the death of the two dominant political parties. When political disruption finally occurs, it will manifest quickly, as criticality thresholds are breached. It has the potential of taking this society in very undesirable directions including civil war, theocracy, and war against other peoples.
The diminishing returns of computer technology applied to intelligence gathering are that it produces more mountains of data than any team of professionals can make sense of, and it prompts said professionals to make mischief with the information that is easiest to sort out: the financial records of ordinary citizens. Nothing will create political resistance more surely than messing with people’s money. The NSA apparatus is now a self-reinforcing monster that will strive for ever more control ineffectively, creating a debris path of ever more embarrassment and resentment. A lone true patriot like Snowden does more to oppose this monster than all the “freedom” and “liberty” spouting, flag-lapel-pin-wearing cowards in either political party.
The pervasive accounting fraud in the attempt to prop up an unsound banking system is even closer to criticality. A society that produces tradable goods needs sound money which functions as 1) a medium of exchange, 2) a store of value 3) a unit of account for establishing prices. The combined accounting frauds in Federal Reserve policy, private banking and securities markets, and government fiscal management is destroying all these functions. The more abstracted finance gets from real productive activity, the more fragile the system becomes. We are doing nothing now except adding more complexity and abstraction to it, causing the system to become more detached from reality. In effect, we’re opting to forego an economy based on goods in favor of one based on empty promises and paper swindles. The potential and probable consequent destruction of nominal wealth would be an event that advanced technocratic society likely will not recover from — in the sense that today’s standard of living could be preserved for billions of people worldwide. That destruction would herald a new dark age, this time without any prospect of recovery via the exploitation of natural resources, which will have been depleted.
The ObamaCare piece of the picture is a mere pathetic soap opera compared to the first two quandaries. The 2000-page law did nothing to address the core tragedy of medicine in America — namely, that it has evolved into a hideous hostage racket. You go to a hospital with a terrifying illness and you are susceptible to fleecing by the so-called “care-givers” for the promise that you may get to live. No prices for treatment are never discussed. They are presumed to be astronomical — but who cares if you end up dead, and if you do get to live, you’ll figure that out later. If you hold an insurance policy, these charges will be subject to a fake negotiation between grifting insurance companies and grifting hospitals, physicians, and drug companies. The price “settlements” are only slightly less a joke than the actual charges, and are obfuscated in documents designed to bewilder even well-educated policy-holders.
Even if you are insured, the charges may bankrupt you. A typical one-day charge for “room and board” in a non-specialized hospital in-patient bed runs $23,000 at my local hospital. For what? Half a dozen blood-pressure checks and three bad meals? You can be sure that ever-fewer families will be able to fork over $12,000-a-year for basic coverage. The ObamaCare legislation and its laughable rollout of a useless website is just a punctuation mark at the end of the soap opera script. The result eventually will be the complete implosion of the medical racket and a return to a very primitive clinic system, with payment in chickens or cords of stove-wood. The smaller number of surviving humans will surely enjoy better health, and greater piece of mind, when this monster racket expires of inertia, bad faith, and deceit.
These efforts to manage runaway hyper-complexity with more complexity are guaranteed to fail. Our prime task at this moment in history is managing contraction, and the means for doing that would be simplifying, not adding layers of complication larded with fraud, pretense, and mendacity.

The Gathering Storm

Guest Post By Charles Hugh-Smith

Doing more of what failed spectacularly will not save the day a second time, as the scale required to create yet more phantom collateral and more asset bubbles will collapse the system.  

The financial storm clouds are gathering, ominously darkening the horizon.

  Though the financial media and the organs of state propaganda continue forecasting blue skies of recovery and rising corporate profits, the factual evidence belies this rosy forecast: internal measures of financial and economic activity are weakening across the globe as the state-central bank solutions to all ills--massive increases in credit creation, leverage and deficit spending--have failed to address any of the structural causes of the 2008 Global Financial Meltdown.

This failure to address the causes of 2008 Global Financial Meltdown is disastrous in and of itself

--but the status quo has magnified the coming disaster by scaling up the very causes of the 2008 Global Financial Meltdown: excessive credit expansion, misallocation of capital on a grand scale, an opaque shadow banking system constructed of excessive leverage and a dependence on phantom collateral, i.e. risks and assets that are systemically mispriced to skim stupendous profits for financiers, bankers and their political enablers.

This is what I have called doing more of what has failed spectacularly.
Extremes inevitably lead to collapse, but even the most distorted system has some feedback mechanisms that attempt to counter the momentum toward disaster.

 Just as the body will try to mitigate the negative consequences of a diet of greasy fast food, our grossly distorted financial and political systems still retain some modest feedback loops that attempt to mitigate rising risks.
These interactive forces make it impossible to predict the moment of collapse, even as systemic failure remains inevitable. Precisely when the heart of an obese, unfit person who eats nothing but fast food will give out cannot be predicted, but what can be predicted is the odds of systemic failure rise with every passing day.

Doing more of what has failed spectacularly

--inflating new asset bubbles in housing, stocks and bonds via quantitative easing, obfuscating financial skimming operations with thousands of pages of new regulations, and so on--is the equivalent of pushing an obese, unfit person to run uphill. Rather than repair the system, doing more of what has failed further stresses the system.

But even if the financial system were cleansed of bad debt and phantom collateral, the status quo would remain only partially repaired.

For it's not just the financial system that has reached the point of negative return: the entire economic foundation of the developed world--credit-dependent consumerism--is as bankrupt and broken as the financial system that fuels it.

 The state's response to this economic endgame is depersonalized welfare, both corporate and individual.

  When favored sectors can't succeed in the open market, the state enforces cartel-capitalism that enriches the corporations at the expense of the citizenry. When the cartel-state economy no longer creates paying work for the citizenry, the state issues social welfare benefits, in effect paying people to stay home and amuse themselves.
This destroys both free enterprise on the corporate level and the source of individual and social meaning, i.e. the opportunity to contribute in a meaningful way to one's community, family and trade/skill.
The status quo is thus not just financially bankrupt--it is morally bankrupt as well.

The status quo is as intellectually bankrupt as it is financially bankrupt.

 Our leadership cannot conceive of any course of action other than central bank credit creation and expanding state control of the economy and social benefits, paid for with money borrowed from future generations.

Let's take a wild guess that the obese, unfit person won't make it up the second hill, never mind the third or fourth one.

  The status quo responded to the financial heart attack of 2008 by doing more of what had failed spectacularly. That injection of trillions of dollars, euros, yen, renminbi, quatloos, etc. revived the global financial system in the same way a shot of nitroglycerin resolves a life-threatening crisis: it doesn't fix the causes of the crisis, it simply gives the system some additional time.

The next global financial storm is already gathering on the horizon.

 Doing more of what failed spectacularly will not save the day a second time, as the scale required to create yet more phantom collateral and more asset bubbles will collapse the system.

Intellectual, moral and financial bankruptcy all go hand in hand.

 There isn't just one storm gathering on the horizon--there are three, each adding force and fury to the other two.

Friday, October 18, 2013

How US Special Forces Would Secure Your Home When SHTF

Guest Post By Sam Coffman

Dennis jumped on his mountain bike and pedaled as fast as possible through the brush and onto the short trail that would take him directly to the back door of his house in the growing evening darkness. Either his radio or batteries apparently had just chosen this inopportune moment to give out. Traversing the trail quickly on the bike was something he could do even in complete darkness however, as he had traveled it at least twice daily even before the collapse. Less than two minutes earlier he had spotted a truckload of armed men using his binoculars. Dennis knew they were raiders . They had running lights on and he doubted they had night vision equipment. The truck was turning into the entrance of his small, otherwise empty neighborhood and starting up the first hill.

Since the collapse and ensuing pandemic, everyone else in his neighborhood had left, died or been killed. Dennis, his brother’s family and two other small families from the neighborhood were now the sole residents, and even they were making plans to leave within the next week. Things were just becoming way too dangerous now that word had apparently gotten out that there might be a house in this neighborhood worth looting, women worth raping and food, ammo and medicine to the raiders who took it.

Man shooting a shotgun 

Dennis and the other three families had consolidated into the largest house in the neighborhood that had an easy area to clear, was located at one of the highest elevation points of the neighborhood and had a crawl space underneath that they were able to dig out and expand. They had done their best to make it appear as though the house was not lived in, but it was impossible – especially when there were children involved – for there to be complete noise and light discipline all of the time. They were going to be ready to bug out as a group in just a few more days, but based on this truckload of raiders, they were going to have at least one fight between the immediate present and that departure date.

SHTF House 

He wheeled up to the house, giving the code word for a full alert to Josh about 500 meters away from the house. Josh was in the closest LP/OP to the trail he rode up on. “Prairie Fire, ETA 2 minutes” He said loudly enough for Josh to hear. For the moment, until they arrived at their final bugout location, they were down to three working FRS radios due to shortages on batteries and limited recharge possibilities. His own radio crackled as he heard Josh pass the word on to the nearside LP/OP that also served as the command center. Dennis noted that apparently his own radio at least received transmissions or maybe the battery was just no longer holding much of a charge.

Dennis dumped the mountain bike into what looked like a pile of trash in the back yard and quickly ran around front, stopping at the house to yell only loudly enough for everyone inside, the same code phrase for “attack imminent,” then ran to the front to help check on tripwires and defensive positions. He could hear the sound of the truck now as it turned onto their street less than 6 blocks away. From his combat and military experience, he knew that no unit or team was ever fully ready for battle no matter how much they trained, but he hoped they had trained enough as a group of family and friends over the previous several months to at least get through this  onslaught without any injuries or deaths…

Defending your home in a SHTF situation

There are two very important concepts to realize when you are faced with the prospect of defending your home – whether it is in a post-SHTF scenario or someone breaking in: 1) A typical residential home is not a defensible structure unless it is either built that way or has been heavily modified and 2) Once the fight has reached the inside of your home, you have lost a good deal of advantage that you will have if you can keep them outside. Because of this, there are a number of important priorities to consider in a SHTF situation when defending your own home, and this article will be divided into two parts. The first part will discuss defending your home while the attackers are outside of it while the second part will discuss the defense of your home once your attackers have entered the same structure that you are defending. It is important to be able to deal with this kind of a tactical situation during low-light conditions. As an additional primer on some of the most important low-light tactics you can incorporate into your training and preparation, I highly recommend the “Own the Night” DVD produced by the Womach brothers, that is available online.

Creating Targets

Small house on the hill

To defend your home correctly, you must take away cover (or lure them to false cover) from your attackers and turn them into targets. This can be done a variety of ways: You can clear all possible cover within a certain radius around your home (100 meters or more would be ideal). It may be that you already have this kind of yard, and are at the top of a hill looking down on all terrain 360 degrees around you, but chances are good that this is not your situation. I personally would have a hard time living in a home where I had no trees, rocks, logs and other such potential cover in my yard.

So in the case that you have natural cover (and a pretty yard), you need to consider two major things. How can you easily (with less than 10 minutes of warning) create a barrier for high-speed vehicle approach straight up to your house? And how can you direct foot traffic from that point, to areas that you want foot traffic to go to? In other words, what can you do to force attackers into the positions that you want them to be in? Barriers such as fences, logs, rock walls, ditches, ponds, pools, heavy brush, etc., can all be used to keep people from getting to cover easily (or at all), expose them even more during their journey to cover (such as having to climb up and over a wall that profiles them). This is the type of “fortress-scaping” that you can undertake now if you have already decided that your home will be a bug-in location (which it generally should be) in all but the worst situations.

Attractive walls, paths and heavy brush (for example greenbrier and other thorny plants that are very difficult to negotiate through with any speed) are very easy ways to direct foot traffic to the locations you want it in. At the same time, give yourself vantage points over all potential cover, as well as placing or at least having locations for future strategic light structures (yes, they can be shot out, but if they can be operated remotely, offer a good spotlight situation when you are ready to shoot the target once lit and have at least several seconds to do so while also ruining their night vision temporarily), motion detectors, trip wires (flares, noise makers, booby traps, etc.).

So what kind of cover do you need for yourself from inside your home? In part 2 of this article I will talk about ways to fortify (and defend) your home – both in ways that are not apparent to the casual observer and will give you the advantage during an armed break-in, as well as full fortification in a SHTF scenario – but for the SHTF scenario you can much more easily convert a crawl space, basement or other type of ground-level shelter under your house (e.g. pier and beam construction) that will allow you to create very effective defensive positions. Think “foxhole” fighting positions whenever possible, as this makes you a much more difficult target giving you a huge defensive advantage over any approaching attackers if you have cleared your fields of fire.

Fighting At Night

Fighting At Night

If you are not prepared to fight at night or in low-light environments, you are not prepared to fight at all. There are many considerations in regard to preparing and training for low-light conditions that include the most basic and primitive (flares, tritium/night sights, tracer rounds) up to the solutions that require power in order to work (IR lighting and night vision devices, flashlights, spotlights). IR and night vision is great, but make sure that you have the ability to sustain your power sources for the long run if you are truly interested in prepping wisely. In a complete collapse, batteries and sustainability of power will start to be at a premium in the first few weeks if not days. Target identification when fighting at night is one of the first and most important issues to deal with. Friendly fire is a very real probability in any night engagement involving teamwork. Another issue is keeping track of your equipment, loading magazines, dealing with being hit (both from the standpoint of first aid as well as loading and firing with an injured limb), dealing with equipment malfunctions, remembering where you keep gear, ammo, first aid, tools, etc. , team communication and signals and more. These are all things that can be practiced in the dark in your own home or back yard at night without having to use ammo. In fact, I highly recommend you get the basics of movement, gear and weapon management and weapon handling to a place that you feel very comfortable with before you even load a single round in your weapon and start practicing live fire. As a part of this type of preparation, there are some great resources out there to read, watch and learn from.

Part 2: Inside your Home

In part two of this article, I will cover two primary topics: 1) Field-expedient methods of reinforcing your home in order to make it more defensible and 2) Tactics inside your home if attackers make it that far.

SHTF Home Defense: Part 2 – Defending the Home

Dennis and Jake looked at each other from across what used to be a living room. “If they saw us come into this house, I’m guessing we have about 10 minutes tops before they come through one
of these doors,” Dennis said. A little over a week into their bugout, they had left the rest of their group and families in a much safer location outside of this small town, and had come in as a team of two to scout out supplies, and bring back what they could. Despite their best attempts, someone had seen them come into town and had fired a shot, missing both of them by several feet, but forcing them into the best cover they could find: A small, ranch style home at the end of a small cul-de-sac. They both wanted to get out of town, but their exits were blocked by a small gang that looked to have taken up residence in this town. Their best bet was to hole up in an abandoned home and wait for nightfall.

None of the houses on the block were inhabited – and for that matter none of the houses in the town had appeared to be occupied, which made Dennis wonder where this gang actually resided.
They hopped the fence first as though they were heading into the yard behind this house. Once they saw the back yard was fairly secluded from vegetation, they circled around and came in the back door of the house as quietly as possible. A quick security check revealed the house was void of everything except furniture. An 4 attached, half-finished garage contained some building supplies and tools that apparently had not been scavenged by anyone yet.

Dennis and Jake set to work while both keeping a watchful eye and ear on the street in front and the back yard…

Criminal in mask aiming at you 

Inside the Home

In part 1 of this series we covered some of the important points in defending the perimeter around a house. In part 2 we will discuss a couple of very important points relating to home defense from inside of your home – both while attackers are outside as well as once they have gained entry into your home. One of those concepts is very similar to the perimeter around the home (which we talked about in part 1):
Namely directing the flow of traffic in a manner that creates targets out of our attackers without allowing them the chance to shoot at us first. Secondly – and as an overlapping part of this first concept – we want to fortify our house on the inside in ways that allow us to identify and shoot attackers before they make it into the house (ideally) or force them to slow down and take certain routes in if they do get that far.
Both of these concepts require the use of barriers such as furniture and construction materials (cinder blocks, plywood and other lumber, sand or cement bags, etc.). Additionally – if there is time – the common entry points such as doors and windows – can be fortified. Starting with the most common entry point for any house – the door – let’s look at how we can fortify this.

The door is held onto the frame with hinges, a deadbolt and a doorknob. However, what’s holding the frame onto the house? Most doorframes are 1” wood (1 x 4) and have very little strength. The key to proper reinforcement of a door is to use steel (angle iron or mending plates) support that attaches the door frame to the studs that frame the doorway. Additionally, longer screws and a longer deadbolt (not necessary, but helps) sink the frame and the deadbolt itself into the framing of the house. In a post collapse situation where it is not necessary to keep the door looking pretty, 2 x 4’s can be screwed or nailed across the door (if you want to keep it permanently closed), or slid through an angle-iron bracket attached on either side of the door, like a barn.

Barricade Door SHTF

If there’s time, windows need to be boarded up using plywood, cinder blocks and/or sandbags. If you’re short on materials, decide which parts of the house are indefensible and pull back into the most structurally sound portion of the house. However, don’t leave yourself blind. Whether you have to knock holes in the wall or remove doors, make sure you are able to cover as many angles as possible of any room in the house based on how you set up barriers. Home-made, bullet-resistant windows can be made relatively cheaply using glass sandwiched between polycarbonate or acrylic sheets, glued together with liquid nails.
Fake barriers will also afford you the ability to force people behind “cover” that you can easily shoot through. Even though the attackers are in your home, you can still set yourself up for success by having good cover in a defensible location that narrows your attackers through forcing choke points (requiring them to move in single file) and fake cover. For example, you heavily barricade all but one door entry or window entry that you are most sure the attacker(s) will try first. Upon entry, perhaps a light couch in front of the door that slows them down but offers them no real cover and makes it look as though you didn’t want them to enter through this door.

Now let’s say there is a breakfast bar that overlooks all entries into the front of the house. You fortify this with sand or concrete bags (be aware that shooting into concrete bags will create a lot of dust that will interfere with visibility and be caustic to breathe), steel or even lumber if that’s all you have, but give yourself the ability to fire 5 through several different “murder holes” (to borrow from the medieval defense concept) in your breakfast bar barrier.

If you have more than one person defending a room, make the door into a choke point (narrowing it if possible using scrap lumber and furniture) and create wide angles for each person to have to cover when they enter. In other words, force your attackers to walk directly, one at a time, into a room where they are immediately flanked widely. Don’t wait until the first attacker is down before turning your attention to the next one. Have one defender always focusing on the next attacker coming through the door so that they do not have a chance to create their own fields of fire and return fire as a team. Force fire superiority on the attackers from the very start when they have entered the room, and do not allow them to regroup or gain momentum.

Some of the supplies I would recommend having on hand to make your own home more defensible in a bug-in situation would be: Lumber (1/2”or 5/8” plywood, 2 x 4’s, 4 x 4’s, 2 x 6’s), 1”, 2” & 3” nails and/or sheetrock (or deck if you can afford it) screws, power drill (with sustainable source of power), crowbars, gas masks (assume an attacking force would try to gas you out if possible using propane or insecticide, etc.), duct tape, plastic sheeting, sandbags, sand, ready-mix concrete and/or mortar, angle-iron (pre-drilled holes), mending plates, sledge hammer, heavy axe, fire extinguishers.
There is a lot more to be discussed on this topic, but remember that thinking through the concepts I’ve outlined in this article and asking yourself how you would break into your own home are good starting points. It costs nothing but time to practice low-light reaction drills and think through as many possible scenarios as you can in your planning for a defensible bug-in situation.

About Sam Coffman

Sam Coffman has over 10 years of military experience as a U.S. Special Forces Medic, an interrogator and a linguist. He studied botany and bioregional medicine both privately and at several outdoor schools in Colorado, and during his military service as a Green Beret Medic he logged thousands of hours in the field as a team medic, military emergency rooms and troop medical clinics. Sam founded and directs The Human Path – a survival school in central Texas – where students learn hundreds of skills based on four basic core specialties (combat medic, hunter gatherer, primitive engineer, scout) both in urban and primitive settings, and then apply those skills as a team in both scenarios and real-world settings in support of the non-profit organization Herbal Medics.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Americans Have Lost VIRTUALLY ALL of Our Constitutional Rights 
Painting by Anthony Freda:

Guest Post By George Washington

This post explains the liberties guaranteed in the Bill of Rights – the first 10 amendments to the United States Constitution – and provides a scorecard on the extent of the loss of each right.  (This is an updated version of an essay we wrote in February.  Unfortunately, a lot of information has come out since then.)

First Amendment

The 1st Amendment protects speech, religion, assembly and the press:
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.
The Supreme Court has also interpreted the First Amendment as protecting freedom of association.
However, the government is arresting those speaking out … and violently crushing peaceful assemblies which attempt to petition the government for redress.
A federal judge found that the law allowing indefinite detention of Americans without due process has a “chilling effect” on free speech. And see this and this.
There are also enacted laws allowing the secret service to arrest anyone protesting near the president or other designated folks (that might explain incidents like this).
Mass spying by the NSA violates our freedom of association.
The threat of being labeled a terrorist for exercising our First Amendment rights certainly violates the First Amendment. The government is using laws to crush dissent, and it’s gotten so bad that even U.S. Supreme Court justices are saying that we are descending into tyranny.

For example, the following actions may get an American citizen living on U.S. soil labeled as a “suspected terrorist” today:
And holding the following beliefs may also be considered grounds for suspected terrorism:
Of course, Muslims are more or less subject to a separate system of justice in America.
And 1st Amendment rights are especially chilled when power has become so concentrated that the same agency which spies on all Americans also decides who should be assassinated.

Second Amendment

The 2nd Amendment states:
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
Gun control and gun rights advocates obviously have very different views about whether guns are a force for violence or for good.
But even a top liberal Constitutional law expert reluctantly admits that the right to own a gun is as important a Constitutional right as freedom of speech or religion:
Like many academics, I was happy to blissfully ignore the Second Amendment. It did not fit neatly into my socially liberal agenda.


It is hard to read the Second Amendment and not honestly conclude that the Framers intended gun ownership to be an individual right. It is true that the amendment begins with a reference to militias: “A well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.” Accordingly, it is argued, this amendment protects the right of the militia to bear arms, not the individual.

Yet, if true, the Second Amendment would be effectively declared a defunct provision. The National Guard is not a true militia in the sense of the Second Amendment and, since the District and others believe governments can ban guns entirely, the Second Amendment would be read out of existence.


More important, the mere reference to a purpose of the Second Amendment does not alter the fact that an individual right is created. The right of the people to keep and bear arms is stated in the same way as the right to free speech or free press. The statement of a purpose was intended to reaffirm the power of the states and the people against the central government. At the time, many feared the federal government and its national army. Gun ownership was viewed as a deterrent against abuse by the government, which would be less likely to mess with a well-armed populace.

Considering the Framers and their own traditions of hunting and self-defense, it is clear that they would have viewed such ownership as an individual right — consistent with the plain meaning of the amendment.

None of this is easy for someone raised to believe that the Second Amendment was the dividing line between the enlightenment and the dark ages of American culture. Yet, it is time to honestly reconsider this amendment and admit that … here’s the really hard part … the NRA may have been right. This does not mean that Charlton Heston is the new Rosa Parks or that no restrictions can be placed on gun ownership. But it does appear that gun ownership was made a protected right by the Framers and, while we might not celebrate it, it is time that we recognize it.
The gun control debate – including which weapons and magazines are banned – is still in flux …

Third Amendment

The 3rd Amendment prohibits the government forcing people to house soldiers:
No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law.
While a recent lawsuit by a Nevada family – covered by (Mother Jones, Fox News and Courthouse News – alleges violation of the Third Amendment, this appears to be an isolated incident and an aberration.
So we’ll count this as an Amendment which is still being honored! Score one for We the People!
 In America, Journalists Are Considered Terrorists
Painting by Anthony Freda:

Fourth Amendment

The 4th Amendment prevents unlawful search and seizure:
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
But the government is spying on everything we dowithout any real benefit or justification.
Indeed, experts say that the type of spying being carried out by the NSA and other agencies is exactly the kind of thing which King George imposed on the American colonists … which led to the Revolutionary War.
And many Constitutional experts – such as Jonathan Turley – think that the police went too far in Boston with lockdowns and involuntary door-to-door searches.

Paintings by Anthony Freda:

Fifth Amendment

The 5th Amendment addresses due process of law, eminent domain, double jeopardy and grand jury:
No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
But the American government has shredded the 5th Amendment by subjecting us to indefinite detention and taking away our due process rights.
The government claims the right to assassinate or indefinitely detain any American citizen on U.S. citizen without any due process. And see this.
As such, the government is certainly depriving people of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law.
There are additional corruptions of 5th Amendment rights – such as property being taken for private purposes.
The percentage of prosecutions in which a defendant is denied a grand jury is difficult to gauge, as there is so much secrecy surrounding many terrorism trials.
Protection against being tried twice for the same crime after being found innocent (“double jeopardy”) seems to be intact.  Hey … that’s two Constitutional rights which are still intact!
HUNG LIBERTY (NYSE)Image by William Banzai

Sixth Amendment

The 6th Amendment guarantees the right to hear the criminal charges levied against us and to be able to confront the witnesses who have testified against us, as well as speedy criminal trials, and a public defender for those who cannot hire an attorney:
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defence.
Subjecting people to indefinite detention or assassination obviously violates the 6th Amendment right to a jury trial. In both cases, the defendants is “disposed of” without ever receiving a trial … and often without ever hearing the charges against them.
More and more commonly, the government prosecutes cases based upon “secret evidence” that they don’t show to the defendant … or sometimes even the judge hearing the case.
The government uses “secret evidence” to spy on Americans, prosecute leaking or terrorism charges (even against U.S. soldiers) and even assassinate people. And see this and this.
Secret witnesses are being used in some cases. And sometimes lawyers are not even allowed to read their own briefs.
Indeed, even the laws themselves are now starting to be kept secret. And it’s about to get a lot worse.
True – when defendants are afforded a jury trial – they are provided with assistance of counsel. However, the austerity caused by redistribution of wealth to the super-elite is causing severe budget cuts to the courts and the public defenders’ offices nationwide.
Moreover, there are two systems of justice in America … one for the big banks and other fatcats, and one for everyone else. The government made it official policy not to prosecute fraud, even though fraud is the main business model adopted by Wall Street. Indeed, the biggest financial crime in world history, the largest insider trading scandal of all time, illegal raiding of customer accounts and blatant financing of drug cartels and terrorists have all been committed recently without any real criminal prosecution or jail time.
On the other hand, government prosecutors are using the legal system to crush dissent and to silence whistleblowers.
And some of the nation’s most powerful judges have lost their independence … and are in bed with the powers-that-be.

Seventh Amendment

The 7th Amendment guarantees trial by jury in federal court for civil cases:
In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.
As far as we know, this right is still being respected (that’s three rights still being followed).
However – as noted above – the austerity caused by redistribution of wealth to the super-elite is causing severe budget cuts to the courts, resulting in the wheels of justice slowing down considerably.
Painting by Anthony Freda:

Eighth Amendment

The 8th Amendment prohibits cruel and unusual punishment:
Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted.
Indefinite detention and assassination are obviously cruel and unusual punishment.
The widespread system of torture carried out in the last 10 years – with the help of other countriesviolates the 8th Amendment. Many want to bring it back … or at least justify its past use.
While Justice Scalia disingenuously argues that torture does not constitute cruel and unusual punishment because it is meant to produce information – not punish – he’s wrong. It’s not only cruel and unusual … it is technically a form of terrorism.
And government whistleblowers are being cruelly and unusually punished with unduly harsh sentences meant to intimidate anyone else from speaking out.

Ninth Amendment

The 9th Amendment provides that people have other rights, even if they aren’t specifically listed in the Constitution:
The enumeration in the Constitution, of certain rights, shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
We can debate what our inherent rights as human beings are. I believe they include the right to a level playing field, and access to non-toxic food and water. You may disagree.
But everyone agrees that the government should not actively encourage fraud and manipulation. However, the government – through its malignant, symbiotic relation with big corporations – is interfering with our aspirations for economic freedom, safe food and water (instead of arsenic-laden, genetically engineered junk), freedom from undue health hazards such as irradiation due to government support of archaic nuclear power designs, and a level playing field (as opposed to our crony capitalist system in which the little guy has no shot due to redistribution of wealth from the middle class to the super-elite, and government support of white collar criminals).
By working hand-in-glove with giant corporations to defraud us into paying for a lower quality of life, the government is trampling our basic rights as human beings.

Tenth Amendment

The 10th Amendment provides that powers not specifically given to the Federal government are reserved to the states or individual:
The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.
Two of the central principles of America’s Founding Fathers are:
(1) The government is created and empowered with the consent of the people

(2) Separation of powers
Today, most Americans believe that the government is threatening – rather than protecting – freedom.  We’ve become more afraid of our government than of terrorists, and believe that the government is no longer acting with the “consent of the governed“.
And the federal government is trampling the separation of powers by stepping on the toes of the states and the people. For example, former head S&L prosecutor Bill Black – now a professor of law and economics – notes:
The Federal Reserve Bank of New York and the resident examiners and regional staff of the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency [both] competed to weaken federal regulation and aggressively used the preemption doctrine to try to prevent state investigations of and actions against fraudulent mortgage lenders.
Indeed, the federal government is doing everything it can to stick its nose into every aspect of our lives … and act like Big Brother.
Conclusion: While a few of the liberties enshrined in the Bill of Rights still exist, the vast majority are under heavy assault.

Other Constitutional Provisions … and The Declaration of Independence

In addition to the trampling of the Bill of Rights, the government has also trashed the separation of powers enshrined in the main body of the Constitution.
The government is also engaging in activities which the Founding Fathers fought against, such as taxation without representation (here and here), cronyism, deference to central banks, etc.
As thethe preamble to the Declaration of Independence shows, the American government is still carrying out many of the acts the Founding Fathers found most offensive:
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures. [Background]

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power. [Background here, here and here]


He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation: [Background]


For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences [Background]


He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation. [Background]


He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us. [Background here, here and here]