My Blog List

Monday, May 17, 2010


Quite the interesting weekend.  Stories to follow.... maybe!

The out-of-touch-with-reality or "it will never happen to me" perspective many people have is always surprising to me.  I see it all the time with regards to both emergency preparedness and with personal safety.  People seem to believe they are somehow surrounded by a force field that will protect them from bad things.

What they're really doing is clicking together the heels of their ruby red slippers and hoping someone else will cover their butts.

Regardless of the topic (preps or safety), two techniques or daily practices can bring you success in your goals - Awareness and Mental Preparedness.

Awareness is really as simple as being in tune with what's going on around you.  A widely followed Awareness Level "rating" was one developed by Col. Jeff Cooper.  It has 4 levels of awareness:  White, Yellow, Orange and Red.
  • Code White:  You feel secure, whether you are actually safe or not.  You are unaware of your environment.
  • Code Yellow:  You are cautious.  You should spend most of your waking hours in this state.  Relaxed alertness.
  • Code Orange:  You are aware of a potential danger or harm.  Something has happened which causes you identify a potential attacker or other type of threat.  You begin the process of removing yourself from the situation and assessing your defensive options should the situation escalate.
  • Code Red:  The threat is real.  You are in trouble.  The Flee or Fight decision must be made and acted upon.
This series of codes was developed with personal defense in mind.  They need not only be used in this way.  These codes or something similar should be a part of your safety AND emergency preparedness plans.  In both instances, they should be viewed as the indicators or "tripwires" to move from stage to stage in your plan.

For instance, just as when seeing two men in hoodies walking towards you on a dark street would move you to (at least) Code Orange and you would begin implementing defensive safety plans, a sudden spike in the price of corn, rice or beans might move you to begin a more aggressive dry-goods purchasing plan.

Accept The Challenge

It is all about being in tune with the world around you. We all want to come home after work and "veg out" - not having to think about anything more stressful than, "butter or not on the popcorn?"

Sorry to break it to you, but you're and adult, and that comes with responsibilities.   Hiding your head in the sand is not allowed!

Stay alert with financial matters by scanning the Wall Street Journal online each day.  Watch trends for inflation, the price of precious metals and oil, grain futures, the direction of the dollar, talk of taxes, etc.  If you don't understand a concept, dig a bit deeper to broaden your knowledge.

Stay in tune with politics.  Like it or not, they affect your life in HUGE ways.  Unless you understand what the various levels of government are planning, you have no way to adapt your own personal plans.

With regards to personal safety, as the old saying goes, "Keep your head on a swivel."  There's no need to approach life with a "scared sh**less" attitude, but notice what's going on around you when you're out.  Know which areas of town are best not visited during the night.  Use your head and trust your gut!

Don't go jogging in the park by yourself at dusk.  When returning to your car in a parking lot, scan around the area for "unsavory characters."  Have (and know how to use) the most potent self-defense tool your state allows, be it a handgun, stun gun or pepper spray.

I'll talk about Mental Preparedness on Wednesday.

Please click our advertiser links. They pay us so you don't have to. A click a day is all we ask!

Copyright 2010 Bison Risk Management Associates. All rights reserved. You are encouraged to repost this information so long as it is credited to Bison Risk Management Associates.


GunRights4US said...

I am absolutely SURROUNDED by people permanently mired in Condition White. If ignorance is bliss, the people I work with and deal with every day are somewhere north of of Nirvana! I can hear them laugh at me and whisper about me. But there will come a day ...

Anonymous said...

When walking keep an eye on people who pass you going the other way. Use your peripheral vision turn your head slightly so you can tell they do not turn around to approach from behind. Don't allow yourself to be passed on both sides by two or more individuals. Walk on the right against the buildings. Beware of people who ask questions, panhandle, lost their dog, etc. If you encounter them watch them but keep moving, distance is safety. Be especially careful of anyone who is friendly, smiling, smooth talking, getting in close, has a good story, seems needy (as in "can you help me" or "I'm from Australia and I'm lost", etc.). Watch for two people working together but seemingly don't know each other. Maybe a woman asking for directions and a man hanging around who will be behind you as you look at the ladies map. Best advice is keep moving; distance equals safety. If you think someone is following you turn around and stand in a doorway and watch them as they walk by, the idea is to let them know you know. Be careful approaching a doorway or gate where someone is loitering nearby. If you are traveling with someone discuss what you will do if confronted with a mugging/robbery/attack. Have a code word so you can alert your friend to get them into code red in time to be effective. If attacked you must not be brought to the ground. backup, sidestep, jab and duck, all the while louding shouting "NO" and whatever explitives come to mind. If you are with someone and an attacker takes them or you down get in their and kick/punch/stab or whatever to protect your buddy. Whatever happens if you are holding back for some reason (fear/uncertainty/doubt) and your attacker takes you down you are in deep shit and now is not the time to hold back.
My best "urban" advice is get a "7-level" screwdriver with a pocket clip and carry it in your shirt pocket or your right hand pants pocket. (A 7-level screwdriver is a small flat blade screwdriver with a blade length about 4". It is typically used to tune an electronic device.) Don't use it to eagerly but if you are attacked use it furiously. If you are facing a frontal attack take one step towards and to the side of the attacker so that your strong arm is in direct line with his midsection. Look at his face/shoulders not at his belly and raise your left arm up as a defense/ruse. Wait until the last minute to stab, don't let your attacker see the weapon. If you are attacked from the back you must act quickly, stab at his groin, inner thigh, again and again. If you are on the ground, stab where you can, rib cage is good, the belly, thigh if that is available. Keep you weapon low and away from his hands; move fast and retract it fast after a stab. If your oponent goes down, backs up, quits, etc.; back away and as soon as you are 10 yards os so away turn and walk quickly towards safety/police/your car. Do NOT try to finish him, if you are free you have just won the lottery do not go double or nothing with a thug.

MikeH. said...

All those "mired in condition white" folks will turn feral when they are suddenly confronted with condition red. And as a direct result of their "ignorant bliss", when the schmooze starts to fly, THEY will be the ones who force us into condition kill or be killed.


Twenty or so years back, I was friends with a guy who frequently talked about prepping. Well, back then, I suppose even I called it "survivalist nut-job" talk. Now that I live in a constant state of condition orange, and see red looming on the horizon, I wish I had jumped on the program then instead of taking the "it could never happen here" mindset.

Even if I had a million dollars in hand right now, I still wouldn't feel like I had enough cash, or time, to prep it up right.


Chief Instructor said...

Guns, lately, I've run into a number of folks with this Pollyanna outlook. They hear the MSM saying things are on the up-tick, so everything is fine.

For grins, I ask them how we can possibly pay down just our national debt of nearly $13 trillion when we only have tax receipts of $2-2.5 trillion a year but our spending is $3.5 to $4 trillion a year.

I usually get the "deer in the headlights" look, and they change the subject. We're screwed.

Anon, great points. In Wednesday's post I'll be touching on those ideas - that you've got to act in your best interest when in a bad situation.

Mike, I think Katrina was a good snapshot of what's going to happen. You'll have the majority of folks who have no idea what to do, and they'll be easily corralled into Hoovervilles or the like. You'll also have the maggots that see it as an opportunity to pillage, and they'll go bat sh*t crazy and need to be put down like the rabid animals they are.

I'm concerned with the government's response. I think, at least initially, it will also be just like Katrina where they will confiscate guns.

My gut says that won't end the same way it did in NOLA.

With regards to the million bucks: I get students in my emergency prep class that get overwhelmed by what they need to do - that they need thousands and thousands to do it right.

I tell them to prioritize - break it down for what's important for their own lifestyle, and to think of it as a sculpture - you chip away, little by little, not with a stick of dynamite.

MikeH. said...


My #1 priority, right now, is obtaining long shelf-life foods and water. My #1 concern is, we all may be forced into a very long period of severe food "shortages". I honestly believe that six months or even a year's supply per person won't be near enough.

I am reminded of the events leading up to the French Revolution. When the king was told about the mood of the populace and the talk of revolt, the king ordered that the people be allotted only enough food (to provide them the energy) to work, not fight.

Control the production / distribution of food and you control the people. Tell them to jump, they jump. Tell them to hand over guns, ammo, their gold and silver stash and the people will surrender all of it.

Who needs unreasonable gun laws or small arms treaties with the U.N. or, orders for gun confiscation? That type of action WILL spark a fight. But, in the right situation, (read: severe shortages and food riots) a guns for food offer will have the people turning in everything, including the kid's Super Soaker, for a slice of week old, maggot infested road-kill... no fuss, no muss and no futile resistance. Welcome to the world of a starving Borg bitch.

Unreasonable and / or unattainable kind of thinking... I know. I'd like to have my family food stores at a level that will see my grandchildren grow strong and healthy and given the sustained energy to resist.


Chief Instructor said...

Mike, I don't think I'll ever be at a food storage level where I'm happy. I swear, I must be part squirrel - "Gotta store more nuts!"

My associated concern is having my stuff taken - either by the government as they've done in the past, or by bad guys. I've got a few weeks of food and equipment in alternate locations, but that assumes I'd have the ability to get to them. They are quite a ways away.

There was a movie from the 1950's (I believe - can't remember the name of it) where a family had just started a camping vacation when a nuke went off in LA. They secured a bunch of food and goods and tucked themselves away in the hills.

One of the first things they did was to break up their supplies into smaller batches and to cache them in the area. Part of the idea was that if they were ever over-run, they could "give up" one of the caches, and not be left with nothing.

I think this is an incredibly important concept, but putting it into practice is quite difficult. There are very few open spaces left where you could hide such a cache without being observed (coming or going).