Complete Outage…Are You Ready?

Just before 1:00 a.m. on April 16, 2013…

A trio of masked gunmen slipped quietly past security cameras…And into position, surrounding a remote electrical substation in upstate California.

First they severed six underground cables. Then they cut power to the site’s emergency phone system.

Moments later, all hell broke loose. Muzzle flashes lit up the night sky… bullets rained down on critical equipment… and within minutes, the entire site was in shambles. Armed with military-grade assault rifles… and using fingerprint-free bullet casings to avoid detection…The attack took less than 20 minutes… destroyed $15 million in equipment… and nearly caused a statewide blackout across California. Luckily, operators were able to redirect the flow of electricity just seconds before losing control of the system.

But the act of sabotage was not taken lightly.

Jon Wellinghoff, former chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), called it“The most significant incident of domestic terrorism involving the grid that has ever occurred.”

The Wall Street Journal quoted a former official who says the attack was merely a “dress rehearsal for a larger event.”

And Rich Lordan, a senior executive for The Electric Power Research Institute, said the attack “appears to be preparation for an act of war.”

According to the FERC, and this is their exact language: “Destroy nine interconnected substations… and the entire United States grid would be down for at least 18 months, probably longer.”Sure, if we lose power for a few days or even weeks, it would disrupt our lives and take a toll on the economy… but we’d ultimately recover.

But if our country loses power for even just a few months, it could trigger a nationwide crisis of unprecedented proportions. Stocks would tank. Crime would soar. Grocery stores would be picked clean. Gas stations would run dry. Hospitals would shut down.You’d have no access to the Internet. No cell service. No ATMs. And worst of all, you’d have no way to contact your family or call for help.”*

It’s a frightening scenario… one that most Americans are completely unprepared for…

What would happen next? What would you do? Will you be ready?

A 2014 report from the Department of Energy proves that our government is already preparing for a catastrophic event involving the U.S. power grid. It could knock out power to all Americans-over 300 million people. And it could last for as much as eighteen months! Former CIA Director James Woolsey says this event could literally “bring our civilization to a cold, dark halt.”

During the infamous New York City blackout. on July 13, 1977…
During a typical thunderstorm, a bolt of lightning struck a key electrical substation along the Hudson River. The hit destroyed the site’s equipment in a matter of minutes. But the damage didn’t stop there…The substation’s failure created a cascading effect that soon brought down the city’s entire electric system. And by 9:36 p.m. – just an hour later – New York City was pitch-black.

LaGuardia and Kennedy airports shut down entirely. Thousands of people were left stranded in subway tunnels. Countless others were trapped in elevators. And soon, gridlock settled in as traffic lights stopped working.Then people panicked.

With no electricity… and no answers…Millions of frustrated people poured into the streets.Before long, the sounds of car alarms and broken glass could be heard from every corner.

And within a few hours, the entire city had descended into anarchy.

“The looters were looting other looters, and the fists and the knives were coming out,” a  Queens resident recalled years later.

Over the next two days. A total of 1,616 stores were looted and damaged. 1,037 fires were reported. 35 blocks of Broadway were destroyed. 550 police officers were injured. And 3,776 people were arrested – which still stands as the largest mass arrest in New York history.

Additionally, 5,244 people were taken to the emergency room. In the end, the total damage estimate topped $340 million.

This, in just two days without electricity. And in a single U.S. city. Imagine a nationwide blackout lasting even a month or more.

Imagine the anarchy and lawlessness if this was to go nationwide. Or even region wide. Or, worse yet, continental or even intercontinental! I’ll admit (and hopefully, I’m correct) the last two are a lot less likely to happen. But the first two, according to some (including ex-CIA and other government officials) are not only possible, but probable.

Are you counting on the government to protect you? Heck, you can’t even call 911. You have no phone service.

Are you bugging out? Hope your truck’s got plenty of gas. Gas pumps run on electricity. I hope you have some money for supplies-providing you find somewhere to purchase them. ATMs are off line. Be careful, traffic signals aren’t working. I really hope you’ve taken care of this in advance. You are not the only one looking for supplies now that TSHTF.**

Remember the “looters looting other looters” from the New York blackout? How about Baltimore recently?

Baltimore anarchy
Baltimore anarchy

Or Ferguson? Times seem worse now. There is a lack of respect for the law and for other people. You’d better be prepared to defend yourself and your family. Maybe even some of your neighbors.

Are you?

Do you have a plan? Put one in writing so you can check off items you have taken care of and those yet to come. Ideally, they’re all checked off now. Get a “bug out” bag-or box- or whatever. Pick a location ahead of time to “escape” to and make sure everyone you are responsible for knows where it is and how to get there. Stock up on weapons. You can’t have too many, is my opinion. Make sure you are not the only one in your group who can use them. Have you stocked up on non perishable supplies (food, water, medicines,first aid kit,etc…) Keep in mind, you have no idea how long this “bug out” is going to last. Be prepared for the long haul.

Not Done Yet

There is so much more to being prepared than just what we covered in this small post. We plan to add as much as possible and as often as possible. And we encourage you to leave comments suggestions etc…



*David Fessler, a degreed electrical engineer and the chief Energy and Infrastructure Strategist for one of the top financial research firms in the world.

**The Sh*t Hit The Fan

300 Reasons to Take Magnesium (Your life may depend on it!)

300 Reasons to Take Magnesium (Your life may depend on it!)

Magnesium deficiency is a serious problem in the United States. It’s likely that 80% of Americans have too-low levels of this essential nutrient.

The mineral magnesium is abundant in healthy bodies. It’s stored in our organs and bones, and used in over 300 enzymatic processes.

Enzymes are proteins that speed up processes and reactions in our bodies. Without them, these actions may not get completed.

This includes your body turning food into energy. It’s also vital for proper transcription of DNA and RNA.

Although it’s considered an “invisible deficiency,” low magnesium levels can manifest in a variety of ways like heart palpitations, headaches, muscle cramps, nausea and migraines.

These may be indicative of bigger health issues like heart disease, diabetes, asthma and anxiety disorders.

If you’re not sure that you’re getting enough magnesium, there are more than 100 health reasons to find out. lists more than 100 therapeutic benefits of magnesium so far. They say it can help with:

  • Migraines
  • Proper formation of bones and teeth
  • Regulation of blood sugar levels
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Slowing the aging process
  • Reducing stroke risk
  • Chelation of extra calcium in the body*

(*This keeps the arteries from hardening due to excess calcium.)

Get Tested

Magnesium deficiency is considered an “invisible” one. But just because you don’t show symptoms, doesn’t mean your magnesium levels are optimal.

Here are three tests you can take to see how much of this mineral you have (or need) …

Magnesium Serum Test — This is the most-common magnesium test, but it’s also said to be the least-accurate.

That’s because less than 1% of the body’s total magnesium is in the blood plasma. And the body will do whatever it takes to keep that number in check.

However, if you do score low on a plasma test, then your bones, organs and muscles may be in dire need of magnesium.

Magnesium RBC Test — This is supposed to be a better test because it quantifies the amount of magnesium stored in your blood cells and bones. If you have good magnesium reserves in your body, you should see a score of 6mg/dl or higher on this test.

Magnesium EXA Test — This involves scraping your cheek buccal cells. Many say this is the most-accurate test because it lets you know how much magnesium is being stored in your cells, bones and muscles.

Due to soil depletion and poor farming practices, it’s almost impossible to get enough magnesium from diet alone.

Magnesium supplements are easy to come by, but all forms of magnesium are not created equal. In other words, they can either do damage in the body or are very poorly absorbed.

These types of magnesium are ones you will find in supplements available from the local Walgreen or Wal-Mart.

John Brisson at put together a comprehensive listing of the types of magnesium supplements out there. Here are some the best and worst …


Best Forms of Magnesium to Take

Dose: 600mg-800mg

Time taken: Bedtime

Magnesium Glycinate — This is the most bioavailable form of this mineral. One benefit is that it can help with sleep and feeling calm. This is also the least likely form to cause loose stools.

Magnesium Malate — This could help those who feel fatigued or who have been diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. This form can also increase stomach acid and assimilation.

Magnesium Taurate — This could be helpful for people with heart disease, as the extra taurine helps the heart to function better.

Magnesium Citrate — This should mostly only be used for bowel irrigation, but it is an OK form of magnesium as long as it is taken with meals. Like Magnesium Malate, it could increase stomach acid and assimilation.

Magnesium ZMK — This form, taken with meals, is considered to be a complete supplement. That’s because it uses magnesium from all of the Krebs (citric-acid) cycle: Citrate, Fumarate, Malate, Succinate and Alpha-Keto-Glutarate. Many athletes use this supplement because it’s said to enhance recovery.


Avoid These Forms of Magnesium

Magnesium Oxide — With a low absorption rate, this is arguably the worst form of magnesium. Yet, it’s the most-common one to find on the shelves of the local drugstore. Out of a 400 mg dose, at most 80 mg of magnesium is absorbed by the body.

Magnesium Aspartate — This was once believed to be more-absorbable because of the aspartic acid. Unfortunately, too much aspartic acid is neurotoxic.

Magnesium Hydroxide — This is another form that isn’t well-absorbed by the body. Most of this magnesium is released into the bowels.

Be sure to research your own magnesium levels before you decide whether to add — or not to add — magnesium to your diet.

Brad Hoppmann

Bugging Out on a Boat

What  if your property isn’t available to you when the SHTF?  Or, maybe you don’t have a good bug out location. Maybe you don’t own property at all.

If you live near a coast-could be a river, a lake,a bay, any navigable water-you may want to think about a boat. You don’t need an expensive mega yacht. What you need is protection from the elements. Also, you’ll enjoy some of the comforts of home such as bedding, living quarters and kitchen and bathroom facilities. If your engine is running and maintained, you will have mobility as well. Of course, that assumes you have access to fuel and oil, etc… You may even consider a sail boat to alleviate that issue.

sailboat neighborhood
sailboat neighborhood

You may consider an R V and we may address that later. But for now, let’s concentrate on a live aboard boat.

You need not spend all your money on a suitable boat. In fact, you shouldn’t. You can find a used boat with operational facilities for a few thousand dollars. Or you can spend hundreds of thousands. (I can’t, but maybe you can).

nice yacht
nice for bugging out

If you’re a handy with construction tools, you can even build your own.

diy houseboat
simple houseboat
diy houseboat
simple diy houseboat

Of course, you will want to have your boat well provisioned. A bug out bag is always at the ready. But you need to be prepared for a long stay. Since you will probably not have a lot of room for storage, you  may want to store more provisions in a secure spot nearby.

You will need to be as self sufficient as possible. Solar or wind energy capability is imperative. You will need a way to collect and store or generate fresh water for drinking. If anchoring out instead of docking you will need a dinghy for coming ashore. A HAM  radio is a good idea as traditional communication may be down.

Bugging out With Pets

Bugging Out?

Don’t forget your pets.


Here is a list of items that you should have in your pet emergency kit:

  • Food: Make sure that you have at least enough food for your pet to last as long as you provide for yourself. Bring the food they are use to eating and keep it in a waterproof container. Don’t forget a bowl to feed them in and a manual can opener.
  • Water: Be sure to have extra water on hand for your pet. Again, don’t forget a bowl.
  • Medicines: Remember to pack up any medications that your pet may need to survive. Always have extra medication in the emergency kit so you don’t forget. Some medicines you bring for yourself may also work for your pets, especially natural or homeopathic meds. Some are dangerous or fatal. Be informed.Be aware of any medication that may need refrigeration such as insulin and have a plan in place to keep it cool.
  • Medical Records: Be sure to always keep your pets medical records together and with the emergency kit. Records such as proof of ownership, pictures of you and your pet together, vaccinations, and rabies tags are vital especially if you have to cross state lines.
  • First Aid Kit: Have a separate medical kit for your pets with basic medical supplies. Some of the items that should be in your pet’s medical kit are: bandages, tape, cotton, scissors, flea and tick prevention, antibiotic ointment, latex gloves, saline solution, alcohol, comb, brush and a   Pet Emergency Pocket Guide” .
  • Pet Carrier or Crate: Make sure that you have a carrier for each of your pets. Be sure that the carrier or crate is big enough to comfortable fit your pet with room to stand and lie down.
  • Sanitation Needs: Don’t forget about the other essentials that your pet needs such as: litter box, litter, paper towels, wipes, plastic bags and newspapers. Also include bleach and other disinfectant products.
  • Familiar Items: Emergencies and disaster are not only stressful on humans but on your pet as well. Make sure to make plans to include their favorite toys, blankets, and treats.

Make sure you include your pets in your evacuation plans.935765_60207996

Remember, that if the situation appears to not be safe for you then it is not safe for your pet either. If evacuation is necessary then you have to take your pet with you. Many who evacuated during Hurricane Katrina thought that it would only be for a couple of days. Since they thought they would be right back they left their pets behind with enough food and water for a couple of days. Unfortunately, it was much longer then a couple of days and those people who left animals behind were not allowed back into the city to get their pets.

Final Thoughts Evacuating With Your Pets

Your pets depend on you to take care of them (and in an emergency, you may depend on your pet) so don’t let them down by abandoning them in an emergency. Be sure to include your pets in your emergency and disaster drills. Get them use to being in their carrier and traveling in your truck. Be sure to keep their vaccinations up to date. Make sure they have a secured collar on with identification. Think about taking some basic first aid training for animals in case you have to give your pet CPR or have to bandage a wounded leg. Everything runs smoother if it is planned ahead of time and practiced regularly. Don’t forget to plan for your pets in your emergency and disaster preparedness plans.