A Bird in the Hand…

It has been said by many who know me, and I will admit it’s true, that I am predisposed toward paranoia.   Well, that makes me sound like a whackadoo, so let’s just say I’m drawn to pessimism.

I’ve never had a day so bad that it couldn’t get worse.

I guess it all started as a young Boy Scout and my introduction to their motto “Be Prepared”. I took that to heart at a very young age (12, I think??) and it has stayed with me these last 4 decades or so.

After the panic of Y2K (what a nothingburger that turned out to be!) I was seriously lulled into believing that we were beyond catastrophe. Sure, we’d have earthquakes and hurricanes from time to time, but “end of the world” stuff? Pfft… That was crazy-talk.

Part of it, for me personally, was the final nail in the coffin of my religious upbringing and beliefs. I had been so indoctrinated with Penecostal “End Times” rhetoric growing up, that part of me still believed the the Millineum was going to be Game Over for humanity. When NOTHING happened, the weight of the duplicity I’d carried my whole life finally fell away and I felt like life was good and I had nothing to worry about.

Then we had the events of 9/11. Then we invaded Iraq for no good reason. Then al Quaeda. Anthrax scares. George “Dubya” Bush at the wheel was enough to give you nightmares, throw in Cheney and Rumsfield and Holy moly, the Rapture seemed like a WAY better option, but alas! No Jeebus was coming back to save us from those lunatics.

On top of all the swell news of the day, there was also the fallout of the “dot com bubble” bursting and causing untold havoc in our country. I too was a victim of that bubble bursting…lost my job, lost 70% of the value of my investments and had to cash out what was left to keep food on the table and a roof over our heads because jobs were non-existent. But I digress…

So in my life so far I’d gone from lower middle-class as a kid, to “working poor” as a young adult, to borderline destitute when I hit my early 30’s, with a wife and child I was also responsible for.

At some point, the dust settled and I was able to see clearly for the first time in a long time, and I realized the ONLY person that would look out for me and mine, was myself.

There was no “luck” coming my way. Thinking “everything will work out OK” was nonsense. Believing in the Government was beyond fairy tales. No, it was time to make some serious changes and get my family in a better position.

All of this is taking the long way ’round to explain WHY I firmly believe in personal preparedness and why I came to believe in its importance.

Well my friends, at the risk of sounding like a crazy person, some sort of Chicken Little, screaming the sky is falling, I have a feeling, a deep unshakable feeling, that we’re in for a rough ride over the next two or three years.

I’m not speaking about politics (a pox on ALL their houses!), or even a resurgence of the Plague. My biggest concern (that has been keeping me up at night, literally) is the food supply.

I believe everyone, and I do mean everyone, should have – at MINIMUM – 3 days of food in their home. I don’t care if you need a cookbook to boil water, you NEED to have food in your home.

But all that aside, just consider the following:

1. US farmers were paid to plow crops under last year.

2. A significant portion of the world’s wheat supply comes from Ukraine. I suspect this is going to be an issue come harvest time.

3. A significant amount of the world’s fertilizer comes from Russia. Do you think they will want to sell it to the US? Will the .gov even ALLOW farmers to buy it, if they could?

4. Crop yields in the US are expected to be lower this year.

5. Numerous food plants in the US have sustained damage in the last year, closing them down or at the very least diminishing their output. This one is very suspicious. More food plant fires in the last year than in the previous 10 years, combined?

6. Pressure from the .gov to divert grain (corn) to ethanol, to lessen the fuel problems we’re currently experiencing.

7. Millions of livestock fowl have been culled this year, supposedly to deal with yet another “bird flu” epidemic.

8. The clarion calls are already ringing out with news of another Covid surge fast approaching. How many more food plants will we see closed down due to the Plague?

9. The cost of diesel has skyrocketed to unseen levels. “But what does this have to do with food?” you may ask? Well, the tractors that plow, seed and harvest crops all run on diesel. The trucks and trains that get the crops to the processing facilities run on diesel. The same, or similar, trucks and trains burning diesel then deliver the processed goods to distributors who load even more diesel trucks and trains to get those processed goods to your local retailers. Do you really think the farmers, the truckers, the rail lines, the distributors…are all going to simply give away any small chance of a profit by NOT charging more along each and every step of the process to cover THEIR expenses? Not bloody likely. Oh, and just in case that isn’t bad enough, a lot of places use diesel to run generators when the power is out to keep the food from spoiling. Lest anyone tell you otherwise, the cost of diesel fuel is DIRECTLY RELATED to everything you eat that you didn’t grow, hunt or harvest yourself. Period.

10. Weather is wreaking havoc on crops this year. We had flooding that caused problems with planting in the US, then cold snaps/freezes that damaged crops in the ground. I read recently that California strawberry farmers lost 80% of the first crop this year due to a “late freeze”. Eighty percent!?!?! Of course, better we lose strawberries than grains in the big scheme of things, but grains are in serious trouble too, world-wide.

None of these things are fringe ideas or “conspiracy theories”, you can find stories on all this stuff all over mainstream media. And frankly, that what freaks me out. If there were only stories about these things on the crackpot websites, or it was only one “personality” talking about it I might be able to dismiss it, but these things are no secret.

Preparedness has many facets- water, food, medicine, shelter, self-defense… but for right now, it’s all about food people.

If you have nothing in your house, get something.

A lot better than nothing!

If you have a little, get a little more.

If I had the space, I would happily store 2 year’s worth of food, but in our tiny apartment we can only do so much. But seriously, anything you can do to put yourself and your family in a better position with food, do it. Now.

If only I had the space…

Once the harvest season is upon us (just a few short months away!) and the reality of the situation becomes more clear, expect prices to soar and availability to dwindle. Then things will start to get nasty. You do not want to be brawling at your local grocery store over the last bag of noodles!

In all honesty, I hope I’m completely, utterly wrong about all this. I would love nothing more than to have y’all back here in a year, making fun of me over my crappy, outlandish predictions. But look it this way, if nothing happens and all the crops turn out great, Russia, Ukraine and NATO all hold hands and sing Kumbayah, and several million gallons of diesel suddenly appear out of nowhere, you’ve still gotta eat, right? You might as well “buy when the market is low” and try to stay a little ahead of inflation. When people are getting “cart-jacked” in grocery store parking lots or standing in line for hours for a government handout, you’ll be glad you did!

That’s just my 2 cents on the subject. Take it or leave it, we’re all adults here. I’m not trying to tell anyone how to live or what to believe.

Thanks for stopping by!

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