|Posted: Tue Oct 25, 2005
10:26 pm Post subject:
What an economic collapse looks like
Very interesting account of life after SHTF in Argentina.
Particularly note the law and order problems. I'd like to preempt
Europeans who will inevitably claim that guns don't exist in
Europe by saying that guns may not be available TO YOU but they
will always be available to CRIMINALS.
My brother visited Argentina a few weeks ago. Heís been living
in Spain for a few years now.
Within the first week, he got sick, some kind of strong flu, even
though climate isnít that cold and he took care of himself.
Without a doubt he got sick because there are lots of new viruses
in my country that canít be found in 1st world countries.
The misery and famine lead us to a situation where, even though
you have food, shelter and health care, most of others donít,
and therefore they get sick and spread the diseases all over the
What got me started on this post is the fact that I actually saw
this coming, and posted on the subject here at Frugalís, months
before the new viruses spread over the country and the news
started talking about this new, health emergency, which proves
that talking, thinking and sharing ideas with like minded people
(you guys), does help to see things coming and prepare for them
with enough time.
So I started thinking about several issues, what I learned (either
the hard way or thanks to this forum) after all these years of
living in a collapsed country that is trying to get out an
economical disaster and everything that comes along with it.
Though my English is limited, I hope Iím able to transmit the
main ideas and concepts, giving you a better image of what you may
have to deal with some day, if the economy collapses in your
Here is what I have so far:
URBAN OR COUNTRY?
Someone once asked me how did those that live in the country fare.
If they were better off than city dwellers.
As always there are no simple answers. Wish I could say country
good, city bad, but I canít. Because if I have to be completely
honest, and I intend to be so, there are some issues that have to
be analyzed, specially security.
Of course that those that live in the country and have some land
and animals were better prepared food-wise. No need to have
several acres full of crops. A few fruit trees, some animals, such
as chickens, cows and rabbits, and a small orchard was enough to
be light years ahead of those in the cities.
Chickens, eggs and rabbits would provide the proteins, a cow or
two for milk and cheese, some vegetables and fruit plants covered
the vegetable diet, and some eggs or a rabbit could be traded for
flower to make bread and pasta or sugar and salt.
Of course that there are exceptions.
For example, some provinces up north have desert climate, and it
almost never rains. It is almost impossible to live of the land,
and animals require food and water you have to buy. Those guys had
it bad, no wonder the northern provinces suffer the most in my
Those that live in cities, well they have to manage as they can.
Since food prices went up about %200-%300. People would cut
expenses wherever they could so they could buy food. Some ate
whatever they could, they hunted birds or ate street dogs and
cats, others starved.
When it comes to food, cities suck in a crisis.
It is usually the lack of food or the impossibility to acquire it
that starts the rioting and looting when TSHTF.
When it comes to security things get even more complicated.
Forget about shooting those that mean you harm from 300 yards away
with your MBR. Leave that notion to armchair commandos and 12 year
old kids that pretend to be grown ups on the internet.
1)Those that want to harm you/steal from you donít come with a
pirate flag waving over their heads.
2) Neither do they start shooting at you 200 yards away.
3) They wont come riding loud bikes or dressed with their orange,
convict just escaped from prison jump suits, so that you can
identify them the better. Nor do they all wear chains around their
necks and leather jackets. If I had a dollar for each time a
person that got robbed told me ďThey looked like NORMAL people,
dressed better than we areĒ, honestly, I would have enough money
for a nice gun. There are exceptions, but donít expect them to
dress like in the movies.
4)A man with a wife and two or three kids canít set up a watch.
I donít care if you are SEAL, SWAT or John Freaking Rambo, no
6th sense is going to tell you that there is a guy pointing a gun
at your back when you are trying to fix the water pump that just
broke, or carrying a big heavy bag of dried beans you bought that
The best alarm system anyone can have in a farm are dogs. But dogs
can get killed and poisoned. A friend of mine had all four dogs
poisoned on his farm one night, they all died.
After all these years I learned that even though the person that
lives out in the country is safer when it comes to small time
robberies, that same person is more exposed to extremely violent
home robberies. Criminals know that they are isolated and their
feeling of invulnerability is boosted. When they assault a country
home or farm, they will usually stay there for hours or days
torturing the owners. I heard it all: women and children getting
raped, people tied to the beds and tortured with electricity,
beatings, burned with acetylene torches.
Big cities arenít much safer for the survivalist that decides to
stay in the city. He will have to face express kidnappings,
robberies, and pretty much risking getting shot for whatís in
his pockets or even his clothes.
So, where to go? The concrete jungle is dangerous and so is living
away from it all, on your own.
The solution is to stay away from the cities but in groups, either
by living in a small town-community or sub division, or if you
have friends or family that think as you do, form your own small
Some may think that having neighbors within ďshoutingĒ
distance means loosing your privacy and freedom, but itís a
price that you have to pay if you want to have someone to help you
if you ever need it. To those that believe that they will never
need help from anyone because they will always have their rifle at
hand, checking the horizon with their scope every five minutes and
a first aid kit on their back packs at all timesÖ. Grow up.
Whatever sort of scenario you are dealing with, services are more
than likely to either suffer in quality or disappear all together.
Think ahead of time, analyze possible SHTF scenarios and which
service should be affected by it in your area.
Think about the most likely scenario but also think outside the
box. Whatís more likely? A tornado? But a terrorist attack
isnít as crazy as you though it would be a few years ago,
Also analyze the consequences of those services going down. If
there is no power then you need to do something about all that
meat you have in the fridge, you can dry it or can it. Think about
the supplies you would need for these tasks before you actually
You have a complete guide on how to prepare the meat on you
computerÖ how will you get it out of there if there is no power?
Print everything that you consider important.
No one can last too long without water. The urban survivalist may
find that the water is of poor quality, in which case he can make
good use of a water filter, or that there is no water available at
When this happens, a large city were millions live will run out of
bottled water within minutes.
In my case, tap water isnít very good. I can see black little
particles and some other stuff that looks like dead algae. Taste
isnít that bad. Not good but I know that there are parts of the
country where it is much worse. To be honest, a high percentage of
the country has no potable water at all.
If you can build a well, do so, set it as your top of the list
priority as a survivalist.
Water comes before firearms, medicines and even food.
Save as much water as you can. Use plastic bottles, refill soda
bottles and place them in a cool place, preferably inside a black
garbage bag to protect it from sun light.
The water will pick some plastic taste after a few months, but
water that tastes a little like plastic is far way better than no
water at all.
What ever the kind of SHTF scenario you are dealing with, water
will suffer. In my case the economical crash created problems with
the water company, that reduces the maintenance and quality in
order to reduce costs and keep their income in spite of the high
prices they have to pay for supplies and equipment, most of which
comes from abroad, and after the 2001 crash, costs 3 times more.
As always, the little guy gets to pay for it.
Same would go for floods or chemical or biological attacks. Water
requires delicate care and it will suffer when the SHTF in one way
In this case, when you still have tap water, a quality filter is
in order, as well as a pump if you can have one. A manual pump
would be ideal as well if possible.
Estimate that you need a approximately a gallon per person per
day. Try to have at least two-four weeks worth of water.
More would be preferable.
I spent WAY to much time without power for my own taste. Power has
always been a problem in my country, even before the 2001 crisis.
The real problem starts when you spend more than just a few hours
without light. Just after the SHTF in 2001 half the country went
without power for 3 days.
Buenos Aires was one big dark grave. People got caught on
elevators, food rot, hospitals that only had a few hours worth of
fuel for their generators ran out of power.
Without power, days get to be a lot shorter. Once the sun sets
there is not much you can do.
I read under candle light and flashlight light and your head
starts to hurt after a while. You can work around the house a
little bit but only as long as you donít need power tools.
Crime also increases once the lights go out, so whenever you have
to go somewhere in a black out, carry the flashlight on one hand
and a handgun on the other.
Summarizing, being in a city without light turn to be depressing
after a while.
I spent my share of nights, alone, listening to the radio, eating
canned food and cleaning my guns under the light of my LED head
lamp. Then I got married, had a son, and found out that when you
have loved ones around you black outs are not as bad. The point is
that family helps morale on these situations.
A note on flashlights. Have two or three head LED lights. They are
not expensive and are worth their weight in gold. A powerful
flashlight is necessary, something like a big Maglite or better
yet a SureFire, specially when you have to check your property for
intruders. But for more mundane stuff like preparing food, going
to the toilet or doing stuff around the house, the LED headlamp is
priceless. Try washing the dishes on the dark while holding a 60
lumen flashlight on one hand and youíll know what I mean. LEDs
also have the advantage of lasting for almost an entire week of
continuous use and the light bulb lasts forever.
Rechargeable batteries are a must (ed. Get a solar powered battery
charger) or else youíll end up broke if lights go out often.
Have a healthy amount of spare quality batteries and try to
standardize as much as you can.
I have 12 Samsung NM 2500Mh AA and 8 AAA 800mh for the headlamps.
I use D cell plastic adaptors in order to use AA batteries on my 3
D cell Maglite. This turned out to work quite well, better than I
I also keep about 2 or 3 packs of regular, Duracell batteries just
in case. These are supposed to expire around 2012, so I can forget
about them until I need them.
Rechargeable NM batteries have the disadvantage of loosing power
after a period of time, so keep regular batteries as well and
check the rechargeable ones every once in a while.
After all these years of problems with power, what two items I
would love to have?
1) The obvious. A generator. I carried my fridge food to my
parents house way to many times on the past. Too bad I canít
afford one right now.
2) A battery charger that has both solar panel and a small crank.
They are not available here. I saw that they are relatively
inexpensive in USA. Do yourself a favor and get one or two of
these. Even if they donít charge as well as regular ones, Iím
sure it will put out enough power to charge batteries for LED
lamps at least.
Gas has decreased in quality as well, there is little gas. Try to
have an electric oven in case you have to do without it.
If both electricity and gas go down, one of those camping stoves
can work as well, if you keep a good supply of gas cans.
The ones that work with liquid fuel seem to be better on the long
run, since they can use different types of fuel.
You can only store a limited amount of compressed gas and once you
ran out of it, you are on your own if stores are closed of they
sold them out.
Anyway, a city that goes without gas and light for more than two
weeks is a death trap, get out of there before itís too late.
A DIFFERENT MENTALITY.
I was watching the People & Art channel with my wife the other
night. It was a show where they film a couple for a given period
of time and some people vote on who is the one with the worst
habits, the one they find more annoying.
We were in our bed, and this is when I usually fall asleep but
since the guy was a firearms police instructor I was interested
and managed to stay awake.
At one point the guyís wife said that she found annoying that
her husband spent 500 dollars a month on beauty products for
himself. 500 USD on facial cream, special shampoo and conditioner,
as well as having his nails polished!
If you are that guy and happen to be reading this, or if you know
him, Iím sorry, but what an idiot!!
ď500 USD, thatís a small generator or a gun and a few boxes of
ammoĒ I told my wife.
ďThatís two months worth of foodĒ she said.
We were each thinking of a practical use for that money, the money
this guy was practically throwing away.
Once the SHTF, money is no longer measured in money, but you start
seeing it as the necessary goods it can buy. Stuff like food,
medicine, gas, or the private medical service bill.
To me, spending 500 dollars on beauty products, and to make it
worse, on a guy? Thatís simply not acceptable.
The way I see it, someone with that mentality canít survive a
week without a credit card, no use in even considering a SHTF
And this guy is a firearms instructor?Ö probably the kind of guy
that will say that a handgun is only used to fight his way to his
rifleÖ and his facial night creamÖ
Once you experience the lack of stuff you took for granted, like
food , medicines, your set of priorities change all of a sudden.
For example, I had two wisdom tooth removed last year. On both
occasions I was prescribed with antibiotics and strong Ibuprofen
for the pain.
I took the antibiotics( though I did buy two boxes with the same
recipe just to keep one box just in case) but I didnít use the
Ibuprofen, I added it to my pile of medicines.
Why? because medicines are not always available and Iím not sure
if they will be available in the future.
Sure, it hurt like hell, but pain alone isnít going to kill you,
so I sucked it up. Good for building up character if you ask me .
Make sacrifices so as to ensure a better future, thatís the
mentality you should have if you want to be prepared.
Thereís stuff that is ďnice to haveĒ that has to be
sacrificed to get the indispensable stuff
Thereís stuff that is not ďbasic need stuffĒ but itís also
important in one way or another.
My wife goes to the hairdresser once every month or two. Itís
not life or death, but it does make her feel better and it boosts
I buy a game for the Xbox or a movie to watch with my wife every
once in awhile, just to relax. 7 or 10 dollars a month are not
going to burn a hole in my pocket.
Addictions such as alcohol, drugs or even cigarettes should be
avoided by the survivalist.
They are bad for your health, cost a lot of money that could be
much better spent, and create an addiction to something that may
not be available in the future.
Who will have to tolerate your grouchy mood when your brand of
smokes is no longer imported after the SHTF?
Once the SHTF the black/grey market will take no time to appear
all around you.
In my country, grey markets were even accepted in the end.
At first it was all about trading skills or craft products for
food. Districts and towns would form their own barter markets, and
created their own tickets, similar to money, that was used to
This didnít last long. Those tickets were easy to make on your
home computer, there was no control and eventually people went
back to paper money.
These markets were usually placed on warehouses or empty land, and
were managed by some wise guy and a few thugs or hired security.
Anyone can go rent a kiosk inside these markets for about 50-100
pesos (about 20-30 dollars) a day and sell his goods and services.
Piece within these markets is usually respectedÖ lets just say
that these managers donít call the police if someone tries
anything funny, like stealing, fighting or taking advantage of
women. Thatís not good for their business and anyone that tries
to mess with their business finds out how much pain the human body
can actually experiment or gets a free ticket to meet the Lord.
Sometimes even uniformed cops manage security on these markets,
for a small fee of course.
As always, you still have to be careful. They may still try to
pick your pockets or even attack you once you leave the market.
Once you leave the market, you are on your own, as always.
This markets evolved and now a lot of different products are
Today I visited my local market, a warehouse that is fairly well
set up and cleanly managed. They had problems for selling stolen
merchandise and fake Brand name clothes a few days ago.
What can be found at a local markets? Mostly food and clothing.
Some have more variety than others but cheese, canned food,
spices, honey, eggs, fruits, vegetables, beer, wine and cured meat
are generally available, same as bakery products and pasta. These
are less expensive than those found at supermarkets. Fresh fish is
sometimes available but not always, people donít trust much
products that need refrigeration, and they get those at
Clothes are also popular and you can find copies of brand name
clothes, imitations, or even original stolen new clothes, the same
goes for shoes and snickers. Children clothes, underwear, socks,
sheets and towels are all very popular.
Some sell toys, but they are always China made, mostly poor
quality though there are some few exceptions.
Others sell tools, also made in China can be found as well, but
they are of poor quality.
Some offer their services and repair stuff or offer work as
You would be amazed of the junk that these guys manage to fix:
TVs, CD players, Power tools, etc. They even manage to solder the
small integrated circuits boards sometimes. Give one of these guys
a screw driver and a bar of chocolate and he will fix a nuclear
After food and clothes, the 3rd most popular item has to be CDs
and DVDs, movies, music, play station 2 and Xbox games, programs,
it all ends up there just one or two days after the official
release in USA. Seems that they have e guy hidden under Bill
Gateís desk or something.
Anyway, almost everything can be found there, and if you want, you
can ask around, talk to the right guy and buy illegal stuff like
drugs or black market guns and ammo. The quality of the drugs is
questionable, of course, and a lot of addicts die from the
mixtures these guys sell. Guns are mostly FM High Powers, Surplus
1911s and Colt .45s, Sistemas, and old Colt Detective revolvers in
38 special that found their way from police and military armories
into the black market. Condition isnít very good but if you have
money youíll be amazed of what you can end up with. Everything
that is used by the military and police, including SMGs a,
Browning 50 BMG Machine guns, and even frag grenades, is available
in the black market, if the customer has the amount of money and a
little patience, of course. The big guns may take a while, but the
handguns and grenades are readily available.
Someone hit me in the head please because I messed up about the
Everyone wants to buy gold! ďI buy gold. Pay cashĒ signs are
everywhere, even on TV! I canít believe Iím that silly!
I just didnít relate it to what I read here because they deal
with junk gold, like jewellery, either stolen or sold because they
needed the money, not the gold coins that you guys talk about. No
one pays for the true value of the stuff, so big
WARNING! Sign on people that are buying gold coins.
Since it is impossible to determine the true mineral percentage of
gold, small shops and dealers will pay for it as regular jewellery
What I would do if I were you: Besides gold coins, buy a lot of
small gold rings and other jewellery. They should be less
expensive than gold coins, and if the SHTF bad, youíll not be
loosing money, selling premium quality gold coins for the price of
If I could travel back in time, Iíd buy a small bag worth of
Small time thieves will snatch gold chains right out of your neck
and sell them at these small dealers found everywhere. This is
VERY common at train stations, subways and other crowded areas.
So, my advice, if you are preparing for a small economical crisis,
gold coins make sense. You will keep the value of the stuff and be
able to sell it for its actual cost to gold dealers or maybe other
survivalists that know the true value of the item.
In my case, gold coins would have been an excellent investment,
saving me from loosing money when the local economy crashed. Even
though things are bad, I can go to a bank down town and get paid
for what a gold coin is truly worth, same goes for pure silver.
But where I live, in my local are small time dealers will only pay
you the value of junk gold, no matter what kind of gold you have.
So, Iíd have to say that if the SHTF is bad, gold jewellery
is a better trade item than gold coins.
Forgive me for not talking about this before, but I didnít
realize this until today, when I visited my local market warehouse
and saw a ďBuy GoldĒ sign.
PART III: GUNS, AMMO AND OTHER GEAR
After the SHTF in 2001, only the most narrow minded, brain
washed, butterfly IQ level idiots believed that the police would
protect them from the crime wave that followed the collapse of our
A lot of people that could have been considered antigun before,
ran to the gun shops, seeking advise on how to defend themselves
and their families.
They would buy a 38 revolver, a box of ammo, and leave it in the
closet, probably believing that it would magically protect them
Oh, maybe you donít think that firearms are really necessary or
your beliefs do not allow you to buy a tool designed to kill
people. So you probably ask yourself, is a gun really necessary
when the SHTF? Will it truly make a difference?
Having gone through a SHTF scenario myself, total economical
collapse in the year 2001, and still dealing with the
consequences, 5 years later, I feel I can answer that question.
YES, you need a gun, pepper spray, a machete, a battle axe, club
with a rusty nail sticking out of it, or whatever weapon you can
get hold of.
A LOT has been written on survival weapons. Everyone that is into
armed survival has his or her own idea of the ideal gun battery.
Some more oriented to a hunting point of view, others only as self
defense means and others consider a little of both, and look for
general purpose weapons.
Talking about guns, there is one special subject I want to
rectify, and itís the point on whatís the primary weapon for
the survivalist, specially a urban survivalist that has to
function in a society, yes, even after the SHTF.
The primary defensive weapon for the survivalist is his HANDGUN.
Itís the weapon that stays with him when he is doing his
business around town of working on the field.
The survivalist IS NOT a soldier, even though you are a soldier or
you once were the meanest mother on the battle filed, your home
town is not a battlefield and it wont be, even if the SHTF. A LOT
of water has to go under the bridge until the situation gets to a
point where you can calmly walk down the street with a rifle on
People, if you are interested in real world SHTF situation, and
you want to prepared for the real deal, then understand that this
isnít black or white.
You wake up one day and listen on the radio that the economy
collapsed and that the stock market closed indefinitely.
What do you do? You still have to go to the office/work/whatever
.Kiss the wife good bye and walk to the office with your AR across
your back, or across your chest, Israeli style, ready to shoot?
You wont get far. Someone will shoot you or throw you in jail, or
in a mental institution.
What Iím trying to explain, is that its ok to prepare for China
invading you country, Germans and UN or Martians. That is the
extreme, less likely worst case scenario.
There is an infinity spectrum of gray between the black and white.
White being your average normal day and black being total
TEOTWAWKI, lizard men invading the planet.
Rifles do have a place in the survivalistís arsenal, and a very
important one. But you have to understand that 90% of the time,
the handgun will be the weapon you have available when you need
You cant compare to a trooper in Iraq that has his weapon with him
at all times.
I ask you how many soldiers do you know that keep wearing cammo
and totting their M4s around town when they return home?
What works for war does not work for the survivalist, especially
the urban survivalist.
Even if you live in a retreat far from town, you have to work,
donít you? Or do you have employees that take care of all your
mundane tasks, leaving you all day to keep watch with your rifle
A soldier is part of a huge machine, HIS job is to carry that
rifle, while others take care of other needs. A survivalist, one
that is not part of a large survivalist group, has no one to cover
When a new guy looks for advice on what to get for defense, some
will recommend a rifle or shotgun as a first defensive weapon.
Lets say race riots start in this guyís city. He still has to go
to work every day. What is he supposed to do? Shove his pump
shotgun in his pocket? A handgun, even though less powerful, can
be used for home defense AND go with you wherever you need to go.
If the place floods, he can still hop into an evacuation boat
without leaving his weapon behind. Iím sure no rescue team will
pick you if you are carrying a long arm. Theyíll ask you to
leave it behind for sure.
What if your government, realizing that TSHTF and that they lost
control of the events, bans all firearms indefinitely? Donít
know about you, but if things are that bad, Iíd like to be
armed. You can hide a handgun under a jacket. You cant hide a long
arm under your clothes.
I think it was Clint Smith who said that the handgun is only used
to fight his way to his rifle. Man! that sounds ďmachoĒ.
Iíd love to see him walking into Walmart with his tactical M4,
taking the subway, visiting the doctor or going to the bank.
ďOver here Mr. Smith, you can hang you M4 right next to my
coatĒ I donít think so.
Guys, unless you have your own shooting school, you do not get to
carry your rifle to work.
OK, now that I got that out of my chest lets look at some options.
Handguns: Revolver or Pistol?
Pistol. All the way.
Yes, I saw the video of the guy that accurately emptied his
S&W in Ĺ a second. I also saw the shooting range and the
crowd behind him, watching the event. Can he shoot and reload that
way if he is in his car, driving with one hand and shooting with
the other, while a bunch of scum bags in another car are shooting
Hey, maybe he can. I know I canít. Can you?
Generally speaking, the revolver is more difficult to master than
the pistol. The double action is hard and it affects speed and
accuracy. It can be done, but I found that pistols are easier, as
did many shooters.
Also, even though they seem to be more simple, revolvers are not
as rugged as service pistols, the mechanisms that cycles the
cylinder and cocks the hammer is both complicated and fragile
compared to auto pistols.
Before anyone starts casting evil voodoo spells at me for
insulting their prized S&W or Ruger: I own revolvers and like
shooting them, I just donít think they are the best option for
self defense, and I see that everyone I talk to in my country who
is worried about security as I am also chooses pistols.
Quality pistols resist sand, mud and dirt in general better than
revolvers, where a small pebble locked in the mechanism may render
the revolver inoperable.
I personally had a problem with a new stainless steel Taurus
Tracker .357 magnum. After shooting it a couple of times I
reloaded it and shot all 7 rounds as fast as I could and when I
tried to empty it, I found that the empties were stuck because
they expanded because of the heat. I had to wait until the gun
cooled a little so I could empty the gun. Stuff like this can get
you killed, even more in a 7 round handgun.
I once saw a man walk into a gun store wanting to trade his 357
magnum revolver for a 9mm high capacity pistol.
He said he was driving when thugs from another car started
shooting at him. He was chased for a few blocks.
He said that he pulled his revolver and started shooting at them,
and ran out of ammo real fast. He wanted more capacity and fast
reloading. I could not agree with him more.
Some will consider this ďSpray and prayĒ, thinking that all
rounds should hit the target and if some donít then it means
that you need more time at the range.
Those same people will tell you that they intend to use bolt
action rifles as defensive rifles, making each shot count, without
ever missing their target, one shot one kill.
I donít agree with this. One shot one kill is ok for snipers,
but the survivalist should have other alternatives.
I donít see anything wrong with shooting four or five rounds at
a chasing car. If those rounds make them think twice about their
intentions, they are rounds well spent in my book, even if they
donít kill the attacker.
Suppressive fire is possible if you have a high capacity pistol. I
wouldnít doubt on using such a tactic if it serves my purposes,
or if it buys me time to get out of there.
Also keep in mind that criminals are cowards and therefore attack
in groups. The survivalist should be able to face more than just
one attacker. Getting into a gunfight with two or three armed men
while packing a 6 round revolver is rather hard to deal with. A
high capacity pistol can load about 15 or 19 rounds, and that can
certainly make a difference in a gunfight where you are
A forensic doctor that used to live in my neighborhood got killed
last year. He was ambushed when he exited a restaurant by 5 or 6
men. Even though they did kill him he managed to kill 4 of them
and severely injure another.
He shoot regularly and carried a Glock .40. Iím sure he was
lucky but I also think that his choice of weapon was also
important in the outcome.
If anyone is wondering, people in my country that are serious
about self defense carry Glocks. Those that donít have the
money for a Glock carry Bersas, FM High Powers or 1911 surplus
At first I wasnít sure about the Bersa, but once I tried them I
saw that they are very descent guns. I now own two Bersas and am
pleased with they performance.
The calibre choice calls for endless debate and it is not my
intention here. Lets just say that 9mm , 40S&W and 45ACP are
the obvious choices.
40S&W seem to be the most adequate, both in FMJ and HP, while
9mm lacks some stopping power and hollow points should be used if
Though the 9mm lacks power compared to the 40S&W, it is more
popular world wide, a factor to consider seriously when choosing a
handgun for SHTF. Besides, 9mm can also be used in a number of
carbines and SMG, another important fact to be considered.
SMGs and carbines chambered for 40S&W and .45 ACP are also
available, but they at not nearly as popular as those chambered
Whatever you choose keep 500 or better yet 1000 rounds of quality
ammo for your handgun at all times. 100 rounds wont last much if
the crisis lasts long. Also consider that once the balloon goes
up, governments tend to restrict guns and ammo.
I previously stated that the urban survivalist will be using his
handgun 90% of the time he needs to defend himself and family from
I didnít pull this figure out of thin air, it is quite accurate
based on what happens here on daily basis, even a little
optimistic. Cold harsh reality has shown us that most attacks
occur when entering or exiting your home, when you are more
Almost no one is stupid enough to try to enter a barred house with
armed occupants. Believe me people, the gene pool will clean
itself rather fast once the SHTF.
So, is a rifle necessary? Of course it is! There is still that
10%, and that 10% can still ruin your day. And this percentage sky
rockets if you intend to use that same rifle for putting meat on
If you have to settle with just one rifle, go for a semi auto.
Ideally you should have a bolt action one and a semi auto rifle. A
bolt action and a semiautomatic 308 would make a nice combination.
Whatever you choose, try to keep it within military calibers, and
military weapons if possible.
It may seem that I have something against bolt rifles but I
donít. I think they are fantastic weapons, but I think that semi
autos are much better fighting weapons.
The idea of ďpicking them outĒ 300 meters away with your bolt
rifle, as they come in a row blowing whistles and firing warning
rounds is laughable at best.
Bolt rifles do have advantages over semi autos, accuracy not being
the most important one.
Bolt rifles such as Mausers last forever and are harder than
rocks, THATíS important. They are simple, easy to repair tools
that will serve you (within their limitations of course) longer
than any other weapon.
For example, the coil spring on my Mauser 1891 safety broke into 3
separate parts, after almost 100 years of faithful service. I dug
into my tool box and found a spring left over from a kitchen
shelve door. I cut it approximately to the length of the previous
spring, replaced it and the rifle was fixed.
There are not many weapons that allow this. And it is a very
valuable attribute once the SHTF and spare parts are no longer
Stick to common calibers, 223, 7.62x39mm, or 7,62x51 (308).
.223 vs. 308? Iím not going there. If you prefer 223 because it
has less recoil, itís lighter, or you favor the AR rifle go
If you think that 223 is more powerful than 7,62.. sign up to
Just remember what I said before, a survivalist is not a soldier
serving in Iraq, and you donít have the entire USMF to back you
up. You are on your own.
You are not going to pin your attackers down with a questionably
effective round and wait until someone hits them with artillery. .
About ARsÖ I wouldnít trust my life to a rifle that has more
versions than Rocky sequelsÖ the way I see it, it means that the
basic design was the problem and there is no solution.
On AK Ö all has been said. The most popular rifle on the planet.
And popular not because of politics, but because it works. It also
fires an intermediate power, effective round, available world
wide. SKS are also good, but Iíd rather have removable
Again, donít use voodoo on me because I say I wouldnít trust
my life to a AR. If you keep your weapon clean, know itís
limitations and feel comfortable with it, go for it please. A
couple of rounds of 223 will kill anyone just as well.
If you want a rifle that can do a little bit of everything
relatively well, do yourself a favor and get either a M1A or a FAL
in 7,62 (308) with a carbine length barrel. Preferably with a red
dot scope and some kind of light mount. Leave full length barrels
to hunters and bench rest shooters.
Do your homework on both guns and youíll see what I mean.
Choose 308 not because of the added range you can get out of it,
but because of its power at all ranges, choose it because it turns
cover into concealment. Think about all the possible cover
material you can find in a city, like cars, trees, low walls and
other structures. The 308 will go right through it, or destroy it
after a few rounds. Itís a proven cartridge through out the
Shotguns are good general purpose guns. The main advantage I see
is the devastating stopping power and the ability to use special
ammo, like slugs and less than lethal ammo. Iím not so sure
about the role as an ďinside houseĒ gun. The muzzle blast is
great and quick follow up are not easy, especially when adrenalin
is pumping through your system or, even worse, when someone is
shooting back at you.
Pistol calibre carbines and SMG.
If possible , Iíd choose a SMG reduced to semi auto (only if
necessary, of course, full auto selector is better if possible )
or other kind of short, small, pistol calibre carbine.
The combination of a 9mm handgun and a 9mm carbine or SMG reduced
to semi auto or full auto class III has lots of advantages in my
book and is a fine combination.
Some think that full auto is a waste of ammo. I donít think so,
not if you know how to use your head, and use this feature wisely.
If you can get a short barrel and collapsible stock, youíll also
have a weapon that can be hidden under a heavy coat.
A red dot scope would enhance accuracy a lot.
The advantage of having the same ammo for long and small arm is
not to be taken lightly. From the logistical, survivalist point of
you, this is one big thumbs up!
Think about cowboys and Americans that lived in the west, they
also knew the value of using the same ammo for rifle and handgun.
They had single action handguns and lever action handguns
chambered for the same ammo, the modern survivalist can have the
same ammo for his auto pistol and his sub-rifle as well.
Some think that a pistol calibre long arm is just one big clumsy
pistol or a rifle sized gun that delivers pistol power and
This is BS. Anyone that ever fired a pistol calibre rifle or SMG
knows that they are much more accurate, hitting torso targets at
100 yards is easy, and a little more if you have a red dot scope.
Also, SMGs can manage hot ammo specially made for such guns, much
more powerful than the one for handguns. Even if you use regular
handgun ammo, the added barrel length adds a few extra feet per
second making it more powerful. Just check the information on boy
armor. Body armor that is rated to stop 9mm, for example, is not
rated to stop the same 9mm ammo out of a SMG or carbine, because
the added speed will make that same round penetrate the vest.
Anyway, +P ammo is more than enough power out of a SMG or carbine,
you donít have to go looking for special SMG ammunition.
If you can get full auto, that one nice feature to have. Not worth
it if you are on a tight budget, but if you can get it, it may
come in handy someday.
Full auto SMG are giving police in my country a lot of headaches.
A criminal with little or no training will put 3 or 4 cops armed
with pistols and shotguns on their toes, just because of the sheer
volume of fire these high capacity 9mm deliver.
There was this case of a bad guy standing in front of a patrol car
full of cops on a red light stop, pulling a 9mm SMG out of his
coat and emptying it on full auto. The cops didnít have a
chance, he killed them all. The car looked like Swiss cheese with
40 9mm holes all over the vehicle.
All Iím going to say on this subject is : Have one if you can.
Thatís it. Iíll leave the rest of it to your imagination,
donít make me say it.
Today it may seem like a ďnice to haveĒ featureÖ after the
SHTF, it may be a ďO God Iíve got to get a suppressor!!Ē
Iíd buy a good suppressor instead of a ultra high dollar scope
like the ACOG. Buy a good quality scope, but donít spend a
fortune on it, and use the rest of the money on a suppressor.
If you are serious about preparing for SHTF, youíll thank me one
day, just trust me on this one.
9mm and 45 suppress quite well. Not as well as .22 , but there is
much more power on the big bore ammo.
Combined with a full auto SMG, the possibilities are much greater.
Sometimes itís just better to go unnoticed, specially in a SHTF
Dear God! Buy body armor PLEASE!!
Itís dirt cheep in USA.
Preferably, get the police concealable kind( class II) Then
continue to work on it and get class III A military armor and some
rifle plates, just as you do when you start buying guns.
Youíll end up with 2 or 3 sets of armor which are great to have
for family members and spares.
Just so you know, I got so desperate about body armor I ordered it
from USA through internet (bulletproofme.com), I ended up paying a
total of nearly 600 USD for body armor that costs 200 USD in USA.
Buy it while you still can.
When the SHTF youíll end up wearing it, believe me. I donít
wear mine all day long but I do wear it when I have to go some
place dangerous, deal with people I donít trust, or when I have
to go teach Architecture Representation late at night, and must
travel through a much dangerous road at 12 PM.
I OWN FIREARMS BECAUSE...
I Own Firearms Because A Bunch Of Old, Dead, White Folks Said I Should:
1) "The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep
and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against
tyranny in government." ~ Thomas Jefferson.
2) "The best we can hope for concerning the people at large is that
they be properly armed." ~ Alexander Hamilton.
3) "Arms discourage and keep the invader and plunderer in awe, and
preserve order in the world as well as property." ~Thomas Paine.
4) "Americans need not fear the federal government because they
enjoy the advantage of being armed, which you possess over the people of
almost every other nation." ~ James Madison.
5) "The very atmosphere of firearms everywhere restrains evil
interference; they deserve a place of honor with all that's good."
~ George Washington.
6) "The great object is that every man be armed. Everyone who is
able may have a gun."
~ Patrick Henry.
7) "Laws that forbid the carrying of arms... disarm only those who
are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes" ~ Thomas
Jefferson quoting Cesare Beccaria.
8) "To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to
enslave them." ~ George Mason.
9) "The said Constitution be never construed... to prevent the
people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping
their own arms." ~ Samuel Adams.
10) "But the right of citizens to bear arms is just one more
guarantee against arbitrary government, and one more safeguard against a
tyranny which now appears remote in America, but which historically has
proved to be always possible." ~ Hubert Humphrey.
11) "I carried it (a revolver) religiously and during the summer I
asked a friend, a man who had been one of Franklin's bodyguards in New
York State, to give me some practice in target shooting so that if the
need arose I would know how to use the gun." ~ Eleanore Roosevelt.
12) "By calling attention to 'a well regulated militia', the
'security' of the nation, and the right of each citizen 'to keep and
bear arms', our founding fathers recognized the essentially civilian
nature of our economy. Although it is extremely unlikely that the fears
of governmental tyranny which gave rise to the Second Amendment will
ever be a major danger to our nation, the Amendment still remains an
important declaration of our basic civilian-military relationships, in
which every citizen must be ready to participate in the defense of his
country. For that reason, I believe the Second Amendment will always be
important." ~ John F. Kennedy.
I Own Firearms Because History Says I Should:
13) 1911: Turkey established gun control. From 1915 to 1917, 1.5 million
Armenians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and
14) 1929: Soviet Union established gun control. From 1929 to 1953, about
40-60 million citizens, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and
exterminated or starved to
15) 1935: China established gun control. From 1948 to 1952, 20 million
political dissidents, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and
16) 1938: Germany established gun control. From 1939 to 1945, 13 million
Jews, Catholics and others who were unable to defend themselves were
rounded up and exterminated.
17) 1956: Cambodia established gun control. From 1975 to 1977, one
million 'educated' people, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up
18) 1964: Guatemala established gun control. From 1964 to 1981, 100,000
Maya! n India ns, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and
19) 1966-1976: China still has gun control. Another 50-100 million
civilians, unable to defend themselves, were killed in Mao Tse Tung's
20) 1970: Uganda established gun control. From 1971 to 1979, 300,000
Christians, unable to defend themselves, were rounded up and
21) 1990s: Rwanda established gun control. In a span of 100 days in
April 1994, 800,000 people who were unable to defend themselves were
massacred to death - most by machetes. How many dead, hacked-up bodies
do you think were found holding a loaded gun? (answer is less than one)
22) 1992: Los Angeles California, USA. For three days police stood by
and watched, unable to stop the rioting, arson and destruction of whole
neighborhoods. Yet many Korean stores were virtually untouched -
protected by their well-armed storeowners who exercised their right to
self-defense through their right! to kee p and bear arms and who did for
themselves what the police were unwilling or unable to do.
23) Late 1990s: Great Britain established total gun control. Robberies,
burglaries and assaults have skyrocketed making London's violent crime
rate now higher than anywhere in America.
24) "Every good communist should know that political power grows
out of the barrel of a gun." ~ Mao Tse Tung
25) "Ordinary citizens don't need guns, as their having guns
doesn't serve the State." ~ Heinrich Himmler.
I Own Firearms Because It Is My God-Given Right To Self-Defense:
26) "If the thief is found breaking in, and he is struck so that he
dies, there shall be no guilt for his bloodshed." ~ Exodus 22:2
27) "...he who has no sword, let him sell his garment and buy
one." ~ Luke 22:36
28) "When a strong man, fully armed, guards his own palace, his
goods are in peace." ~ Luke 11:21
29) "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are
created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain
unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit
of Happiness." ~ Declaration of Independence
I Own Firearms Because I Have Common Sense:
30) A gun-owner his far more likely to be killed in a car accident or by
drowning in a swimming pool or by a physician's mistakes than from
owning a gun.
31) Criminals fear victims holding guns, not victims holding phones.
32) 2 million times a year, private citizens successfully use guns to
I Own Firearms Because There Are Those With Power Who, If Given The
Chance, Would Force Me To Relinquish Them:
33) "Banning guns addresses a fundamental right of Americans to
feel safe." ~ Sen. Diane Feinstein D-CA, quoted by AP, 11/18/93.
34) "We're going to hammer guns on the anvil of relentless
legislative strategy! We're going to beat guns into submission!" ~
Rep. Charles Schumer D-NY, quoted on NBC, 12/8/93
35) "For target shooting, that's okay. Get a license and go to the
range. For defense of the home, that's why we have police departments.
" ~ James Brady. (police are useless in preventing crime, they get
involved AFTER the crime has been committed.)
36) "The sale of guns must stop. Halfway measures are not
enough." ~ Sarah Brady.
37) "Waiting periods are only a step. Registration is only a step.
The prohibition of private firearms is the goal." ~
Former Attorney General Janet Reno.
38) "The purpose of government is to rein in the rights of the
people" ~ Former President Bill Clinton, interview on MTV 1993
39) "I don't care about crime. I just want to get the guns." ~
Former Senator Howard Metzenbaum, D-OH during Brady Bill debates.
40) "If someone is so fearful that, that they're going to start
using their weapons to protect their rights, makes me very nervous that
these people have these weapons at all!" ~ Rep. Henry Waxman, D-CA,
5/2001 MSNBC report on .50BMG rifles.
"It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most
intelligent that survives. It is the one most adaptable to change.
.net> ~~~~~~ PERSONAL SIGNATURE ~~~~~~~
Remember, remember the 5th of November is Ron Paul Day! ~~
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Please join us November 5th for the largest one day political donation
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shocking opponents into recognition of the power of Liberty.----
"DON'T YOU ALL REALIZE THAT WHEN YOU SACRIFICE LIBERTY FOR
SECURITY, YOU LOSE BOTH?!" ~~ RON PAUL, PRESIDENT 2008,
"Stop throwing the Constitution in my face! It's just a
!!@#$%&*@!! piece of paper!" George W. Bush, Nov 2005.
"I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the
office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my
ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United
States." Presidential Oath of Office taken by every president.
RON PAUL IN 2008