Skip to comments.Top 10 Ways to Prepare for the Total Breakdown of Society Without Looking Like a (Complete) Lunatic
Posted on 12/21/2010 5:00:48 AM PST by Diana in Wisconsin
It's been a crazy past few years. We've seen gas prices hit all-time highs, been hit by major and catastrophic weather disasters, and watched as banks and major financial institutions disappear overnight in the midst of what appears to be an actual, real-life economic depression. Our stable, comfortable lives suddenly don't seem so stable any more.
Here are 10 things you can do to improve your chances of riding out a major disaster without looking like a total lunatic. If you get all 10 of these items checked off, let me know so I can come crash at your place when aliens attack.
10. Get solar power
Having solar panels on your roof not only reduces your utility bill, but also puts you in the enviable position of having power when nature strikes down the energy grid. They'll eventually pay for themselves and they're also a great hedge against future spikes in energy costs. In the event of a disaster, you'll have power to fend off the zombies, nuclear mutants and ninja biker gangs that will inevitably rise up from the ashes of polite society.
9. Collect and filter your rain water for home use
A lot of water gushes down your gutter pipes during a rain storm. A typical suburban roof has about 1,000 square feet of rain-catching surface that could be put to good use with the strategic placement of a barrel or two. If a meteor strikes the nation's capital and we're cast into anarchy, it's a good bet your city water will stop flowing after the food riots subside. Assuming it rains where you live, you could provide drinking water for a small family with a couple of good rain barrels.
8) Grow a backyard garden
Growing a garden in your back yard will save you money on your shopping bill now, but will literally save your life when aliens invade and the world destroys itself fighting off the invasion. People are doing miraculous things with very small space, turning typical suburban back yards into teeming microfarms that produce a wide and tasty array of fruits and vegetables. It might not be a bad idea to invest in a few robot machine-gun nests to protect the crop after the invasion.
7. Build a Greenhouse
6. Make your own bio-diesel fuel
5. Get Handy! Learn some DIY Skills!
4. Learn to Hunt
3. Build an electrified fence
2. Get to know your neighbors
1. Build a stockpile of food
Time for a "back to the land" movement in America, if not....then do it in your back yard.
Wrong. Except for the southwestern US, solar power is a money wasting greendoggle. First of all, roof? Ever try to walk on an icy roof to shovel them off? Second, batteries? No mention of batteries or other energy storage. The only reason that solar "pays for itself" is that the power company is forced to buy the power (even though it is not needed) and then sell you their gas or coal generated power when you actually need it. Solar is getting cheaper, but mostly on paper, not when you actually try to buy panels. Also the cheaper technologies are much less efficient so you would have to cover your lawn (not roof) to get enough power to do anything.
They seem to have the right idea, but don't quite get it. What is useful is passive solar (not solar electric) and that applies to a house or greenhouse. Mostly that requires lots of insulation and thermal mass, and ways to keep from overheating in the summer. I think the ideas here are great, but the article sounds like it was written by theoreticians.
A wood-burning/pellet-burning stove (I have one in the Machine Shed) and a gas or kerosene powered generator needs to be added to the list (and my personal stash, LOL!) Gotta have electricity to chat with other Freeper ‘survivors!’ :)
Solar is stupid up here on the Frozen Tundra. It’s 7am (been up since 5am) and still no daylight - but this IS the longest day of the year. :)
I have almost everything i need, but needto shore up food stocks.
You’re welcome. I do/have most of this stuff already, but my goal this coming year is to be even more self-sufficient out here on the farm, Apocalypse or not! :)
What kind of disaster will wreak chaos into the power grid and leave those exposed glass sandwiches in working order?
The author hasn’t read the book, “The 500 dollar tomato”. I grew a garden last year. It cost me about three hundred dollars for dirt, fertilizer, fence to keep the dogs out, plants, and pesticides. I managed to can 8 quarts of tomatoes and 4 quarts of chili peppers. The squirrels got the beans and a lot of the tomatoes. Worms destroyed the cucumbers. Coons, borers, and drought got the corn.
This is actually correct - anyone that has solar knows it - or should.
Plus is the event of a real armed conflict, those panels are a big bulls eye painted right on your roof for all the roving gangs to see. - You would need to be in a tightly secured locale with its own trained and standing armed forces.
Biodiesel, and the fence aren’t ideas I really think are productive, and solar is expensive, for a home, but helps to keep the batteries charged in an RV pretty well, provided there is SUN and isn’t that expensive if you stick to the RV, other than that, I’m working on the Greenhouse, all others done or a work in progress.
“but this IS the longest day of the year”
So there’s a Wisconsin in the southern hemisphere now?
Mom bought me a greenhouse about 15 years ago when I bought my farm. 12x10x8, double door, two vents; it really rocks. It was a floor sample at a lumberyard that was going out of business. It was $3K, she got it for $300 AND they delivered it! Deal of the century. I laid the brick floor myself, but it needs a little work; a few heaved bricks due to gophers...
I use it to start and harden off veggies, and also to extend the season with salad greens and stuff if I need to. There have been years when I’ve had fresh tomatoes, peppers, salad greens, etc. up until Thanksgiving. But, it is useless in the heat of the summer; unless I wanted to grow agave for tequilla, nothing can survive those 100 degree days in there. :)
In winter I give it up and grow greens indoors for the winter (55-degree fieldstone basement, grow-lights, etc.) because shoveling a path out to the greenhouse under 100” of snow is just not a ‘priority’ for me! :)
Building an electric fence in an urban or suburban setting doesn’t make you look like a lunatic?
And where you gonna get all the old cooking oil for the biodiesel?
Somebody just needed X number of words for an article.
There’s a learning curve to gardening. I’ve been at it on a serious basis for more than 15 years now and don’t have those problems any longer.
Keep at it! Once you’ve got the basics down, you really can grow a ton of food VERY cheaply. There are cheap ways around the problems you’ve listed. :)
Join our Weekly Gardening Thread for pointers and help. :)
When I looked into solar power I was told the power company required I be connected into the grid—so when they lost power so would I!
That defeats the whole purpose of solar power imho.
I figured I’d just go around and take every body else’s stuff.
Oops! I meant shortest. I think? It’s still dark out; I can’t tell, LOL!
Don’t forget to build that “smoker” for all that venison you will harvest ( without a license)
“Somebody just needed X number of words for an article.”
Yep. It’s from a hippy-dippy site, but there is some good advice here. Anyone I can turn on to gardening is one less *I* have to feed. :)
LOL! My machine gun turret in the attic was built to dissuade you and others like you. :)
$300 is practically free for something like that. I am reading the passive solar greenhouse book (like all good energy conscious books was written in the 70’s) and will build a passive solar greenhouse someday.
We ‘Real Women’ just eat it raw, right off the bone!
Actually, learning to butcher is another thing we should add to the list. It ain’t hard, but you do need some upper-body strength to hang ‘em.
I’d better add a ‘Cabana Boy’ to my ‘stockpile.’ Tee-Hee! :)
From the source. Grow your own rapeseed or whatever, and press the oil yourself.
Low in cholesterol too...
My ‘dream’ is a 3-season porch off the west-facing living room. My ex tore the deck off five years ago...and then just never did get around to finishing that project...or any others for that matter. *ROLLEYES*
It seems that going solar on a smaller scale is more practical. You can buy solar chargers that will charge/power small electronics, cell phone, laptop, iPods, e-readers, etc. There are solar lamps for reading/lighting. Solar ovens for cooking. If you purchased a small solar panel it might power your fridge possibly to at least save your food. That is my planning.
The feds are trying to regulate that :( Gee, ma, I’m in jail cause I was growing broccoli.
Wood burning stove
Getting back to your situation, there is no requirement to tie into the grid, unless you want power when there is no sun and don't have your own storage. I have some solar plus batteries and that system is not tied to the grid power which runs most things in my house (hot water, A/C, etc).
Agree, see post 9. Nobody should be using anything else for heat unless they live in a high rise and in that case they need to move.
If you live out in the country get some livestock. We are buying chickens again next year. We have them once, big pain, but, all purpose chickens are a good thing to have around.
Find out which wild plants are edible, that grow in your area.
I agree, my small solar/battery system is for running incidentals like the laptop/internet and powering the fridge in an emergency.
Hey cousin, we live way up north too. About 8ish we get sun. We’ve had about 50” of snow. Usually get 200+ a year.
If a meteor destroyed Washington, it could lead to a new birth of freedom. The State governments would still be here, not that they're so great, but at least they would be supreme again as they were at the Founding.
Yep, we have two. A newer very efficient stove and one in the basement that’s pretty old. We only use that one when it’s super cold.
Time for a “back to the land” movement in America, if not....then do it in your back yard.
Hence the new food safety bill. Sorry, you can no longer grow in your backyard. Suggestion, goats, chickens and pigs make excellent pets, wink wink.
"Survival Planning for Democrats"
10 ways? Well #1-4 all have to do with firearms and ammunition.
For those who would like you can download a copy of my Preparedness Manual at:
It seems that going solar on a smaller scale is more practical.
PV solar is foolproof for pumping water from a source that does not involve high head. Dig a hand well, pump it out grid free. I believe water is one of the essentials for survival.
Electric bikes springing up all over. Keep it charged, ten to twenty miles of ready transportation.
Battery powered tools available anywhere, keep'em charged, DIY paradise.
As some other poster mentioned elsewhere the key to PV solar is distributed purveyance.
There are of course those who, like freedom, hate such.
I have a friend who owns cabins by a remote lake. On the property is a working gas-well, dug by his grandfather for $200 back in the 50’s, which still supplies each cabin. I’ve put dibs on one for TEOTWAWKI!
I’ll just need to get there somehow....
None of the items noted are mobile except the stored food.
As a side. Yesterday I was in the local grocery store. They had several cases of off brand rum in the clearance section for a ridiculous price. I swept it all up. When I got to the check out the clerk said “Wow you must like rum!” I said “Not really it is going into my barter pile for when things get bad.” She had no clue what I was talking about and decided to help the next customer immediately. Funny stuff. I am sure she thinks I am crazy.
solar power is a money wasting greendoggle
Made the point yesterday upon reading that our local AF base is leaping ahead with a 7 million dollar solar project to reduce their energy consumption. That in itself is a premise that needs work. By my figures, the 185 panel project is spending perhaps 400 thousand dollars on panels, and a ton of money on labor and the associated electronics, to make a silk purse out of a sows ear.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.