If you’re a regular reader of this blog, then you have figured out by now that I’m not one of the gloom and doomers. In fact, I try diligently to simply take a situation, examine it, and try to determine how I can best avoid an undesirable consequence and vulnerability to it simply by being better prepared. If I’ve said it once, I’ve said it a hundred times, “preparedness is about peace, not panic.”
I still stand by that belief and I’d like you to remember that as I direct you towards an interesting article I read today. True to the typical brainless “preppers” hype the article was posted on someone else’s “emergency preparedness” site as an incentive for everyone to dig nuclear bomb shelters or create full-sized Faraday cages "asap". But when I read the article I felt that it simply gave us a nice, gentle reminder that we are indeed vulnerable to a loss of the electrical or computerized power which keeps our nation civilized. On April 20, 2010, the Sacramento Press reported that the CIA Director conveyed the reality of our vulnerability to international hacker terrorists and admitted that it’s a full-time job preventing them from collapsing our nation financially, physically, and throwing our society back to the early 1900’s. (See full article here:
For those of you who have not participated in my “Lights Out, Now What?” webinar, I want to remind everyone that there’s a speedy and unavoidable domino effect when and if our financial or electrical system is interrupted. Because our financial doings are so heavily reliant on all of our modes of communication—to the point that even a mere hour without electricity can cost our economy billions of dollars—if our communication lines are downed for more than 72 hours nationally, it would cause a financial collapse. If a financial collapse occurs, then a national blackout is a natural consequence which will follow quickly on the heels of such a disaster.
If a significant power outage occurs in just one regional grid in the U.S. then that will also cause a financial collapse. A cluster of hard copy research which I read last year suggested the due to the present regional power grids not being strong enough to carry their respective areas on their own, rather are intended to carry the weight as a nationally collective whole, then if our entire nation were to go black at the same time, the task of bringing everything back online is estimated to take a mere 36 months. Apparently no single grid on its own can handle the weight of supporting the surrounding grids long enough to power up the next ones. (Remember the blackouts that occurred throughout the Western States a couple of years ago simply because a part of the California grid wasn’t functioning well?) With over 250,000 trucking companies in the U.S. and the fact that our economic system relies heavily on such systems, then it is also intimated that if our fuel costs were to exceed $4.00 a gallon, at least 17 % of the trucking companies would have to shut down. Very few transportation companies have the capital to take such a cost increase in a “must have” category of running their businesses. (Apparently even the trucking companies run their business with a thin margin of profit just like our very own households have done for decades.) Keep in mind that the airlines just got hit with billions of dollars of losses from the recent “volcano black out”—this after they had already opted for the cannibalization pricing practice of taxing their customers for essentials such as luggage, in-flight entertainment, 1 ounce of padding known as a pillow, and 2 ounces of mysteriously colored air known as a blanket. Imagine what even a short-term power outage could do to that industry, especially if it is coupled with a sharp increase in fuel costs.
So, once again, don’t panic. Instead, calmly determine how you are able to insulate yourself now from as little vulnerability as possible. How can you make yourself more independent when it comes to providing environmental control, security, cooking, heat, light, medical aid, and necessary commerce transactions in your life? To answer that, look at what has been done in past history when the luxury of electricity and the internet was not so abundant. Look at what some third world and even European countries do today in order to mitigate the high cost of fuel and sporadic accessibility to power. Solar power, alternative fuels, butane stoves, pressure cookers, kerosene lanterns. These items aren’t “emergency preparedness” tools for many areas of the world. These are tools of wisdom used in everyday living for real people like you and me. So, take a moment to review the posted article. Ask yourself how you may be vulnerable to the “what ifs” and then determine what you can do today with the control and freedom that you now have to alter those vulnerabilities into strengths of independence.
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