Thursday, October 30, 2014

Australia: Should you bug out from a first world nation?

Hi Fernando,
Long time watcher of your youtube channel and reader of your recent
book here.
I live in one of the countries you recommend as a good location to
relocate to- Australia.
I was wondering what you would suggest in terms of maximising quality
of life in the event that I would have to relocate away from my
country to different places which may have even worse problems.
I think this may be a possibility in the future due to some disturbing
trends in my country:
– Cost of living pressures, particularly housing and utilities, which
were already quite extreme in Australia, have been getting steadily
worse over the last 18mo or so, and are far outstripping median (not
mean) earnings.
– Unemployment/underemployment is underreported and steadily rising.
– Disturbing “anti-terrorism” laws have recently been passed which
criminalise journalists and whistleblowers, and facilitate intensive
mass surveillance.
– It is illegal to carry any item, be it lethal, less-lethal or
improvised, for personal protection from criminals. It is also illegal
to possess body armour.
If you are very wealthy this is still one of the very best places in
the world to be. If you are not, not so much. And the laws chafe.

Hi Chris,
The first thing I would advice anyone considering relocating is that there’s no perfect place to live. Even in some of the best countries and specific areas you can live in, there will always be something that could be improved or that is better elsewhere. Even the best places to live in have their problems, and you’re bringing up one of them which is cost of living. Nice aint cheap, and the cheap places aren’t nice. Of course, you can find cheap and pretty nice, think Portugal, or you can find nice and not that expensive, Spain comes to mind, or many States in USA for that matter. What I’m trying to say is, even in a nearly perfectly balanced location that scores well in most important categories you will find something that bothers you to some extent. All the issues you bring up in your email are true. The cost of living in Australia was already pretty high and I can see how that’s a problem. Then again, most of the other things you mention are happening around the world as well, not just Australia. Privacy and personal liberties are globally under attack and other than USA, most countries have pretty restrictive laws regarding weapons.
Here’s some advice that may help you and others that are considering leaving countries that while not perfect, have a lot going for them:
*If the cost of living is a problem, rather than relocating try adjusting your budget some so as to make the most of it, cutting expenses wherever possible. Changing jobs, working to get a promotion or getting more training so as to get a raise is also a possibility. If you’re retired or otherwise capable of moving, maybe even move to a smaller, cheaper to live in town, State or province.
*When it comes to weapons and self-defense, know your laws well so as to know what you can or cannot carry. People often assume things are banned or forbidden when they are not. When it comes to improvised weapons, no country has any law regarding those. A rock that you pick up, a hockey stick or baseball bat that you take when playing such sports, an umbrella or even a pen that you have in your pocket they can all be used as improvised defense tools and no country has laws preemptively banning ordinary objects.
*In your case, consider New Zealand. Its another excellent country to live in and it scores well on some of the things that bother you such as weapons and cost of living. The gun laws are one of the best in the world and cost of living is 25to 30% cheaper than in Australia. Again, not perfect. New Zealand also has its problems but it would see that it could be an option to consider.
Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

The problem with many Preppers/Survivalists: Reality being wrong about stuff

Some time ago I did a video on youtube about barter items. Basically I explained that I dont believe much in barter items, mainly for two reasons.
1) I haven’t seen it work well myself. Almost everyone that ended dealing in a barter club after the economic collapse in Argentina did so out of pure necessity and they would tell you that cash would have been better. In many cases, people in barter clubs ended up hitting different fairs and markets, both dealing with cash and barter clubs. Most barter clubs would in fact end up using barter coupons, which are little else than an improvised fiat currency of their own 2)Other than some occasional bartering among friends, when studying different disasters around the world, I saw that bartering out of necessity was limited to certain types of worst case disasters, where even basic economic tools such as currency aren’t an option. Examples would be extensive economic collapse, or events in which occupation forces disrupt commerce, a country or town is sieged, or in a smaller scale a person is in jail. All these are rather unique, unnatural situations and when looking at the bigger picture they are very unlikely events and even if they do, a nice egg nest in an offshore account helps more than 100 pounds of nails, hammer and saws.
 So with that in mind I said that if you already have your other emergency supplies, along with some savings and you just have to buy something for bartering after the end of the world, start with precious metals. Historically they have been valuable and accepted during economic collapses and war, and even if none of that happens they can still be sold today in "normal" times. Somewhat normal times are by far what you're most likely to see the rest of your life, with disasters and emergencies where the funds precious metals can provide not being helpful being extremely rare.

A few days ago someone commented the following in that video:
Luckily I didn't have to watch the whole 30 minutes, because at about 4:30 he puts precious metals as first on his list. Then I knew I was watching a dope. In the prepper wet dream situation of SHTF, if you need food, and I have food, and you tell me you can trade gold or silver, I'll laugh in your face and tell you to hit the road. I can't eat, drink, wear or live in your gold.
This comment is a wonderful example of the fundamental mistake most people make when it comes to preparing for emergencies and disaster: Adjusting it to their own personal fantasies or “wet dreams”, using it to justify a hobby or a lifestyle they look forward to rather than objectively preparing for emergencies and disasters. I'm not standing in some high altar here preaching to anyone. We ALL do this to some extent, some more blindly than others but I believe its an area we can all improve on, at least those of us that are capable of acknowledging it.
These are just a few examples of what I’m saying here:

1)Focusing on guns
Who doesn’t like guns? For lots of people, guns were the reason why they got interested in self-defense and later gravitating towards preparedness. A firearm is without a doubt an essential tool for self-defense, but then again its not the only thing you should focus on. Guns are nice to have. They are fun to shoot and they have a place. An essential firearms battery also has a place. A sound suppressor can be a very useful tool too. So can full auto weapons, same goes for a 50 BMG rifle. Night vision goggles give you a huge tactical advantage. All these statements are true, but where’s the balance, where do you draw the line, and where do you simply admit you just love guns? With unlimited funds you can buy all of the previously mentioned guns and accessories but its easy to lose perspective and spend money on this you justify by saying you “need” them while not addressing more relevant, realistic needs.
Consequence: Way too much people end up with a ton of guns and very little food, no water, no emergency funds and no other supplies or skills other than owning guns. Even more ironically, in many cases people that believe to be preparing end up with dozens of guns, but never spent a single dollar in being trained on how to use them correctly. Tip to keep in mind: If you buy a gun, don’t buy another until you take a good class on how to use that specific type of gun. Do this for handguns, shotguns and rifles.

2)Focusing too much on Food
In my experience its usually the ladies that are more likely to focus too much on food. Women being generally wiser than man in the ways of life, if you’re going to obsess or focus on only one thing, you can do a lot worse than having lots of food. Food storage is an essential part of survival and you’re going to be eating it anyway if stored correctly.
Consequence: While food is arguably the most important supply to stockpile, focusing only on storing food, cooking it and neglecting other aspects of preparedness is still a bad idea and leaves you exposed to a number of other problems you many encounter that you simply will not fix no matter how well stocked your pantry is.

3)Focusing on gardening and homesteading.
This would be an example of justifying a certain lifestyle by focusing only on the theoretical self-reliance that a homestead is supposed to provide, while not taking into account its many challenges and disadvantages.
Consequence: Many folks have found out the hard way how difficult it is to make a living simply by growing your own food and trying to make a farm work, especially a small one at that. In some cases people have followed poor advice and moved away from good jobs and a good community to find themselves isolated, not making enough money and not integrating well in their new communities. In other cases people have compromised and end up commuting for hours in an attempt to have the best of both worlds. This is a tricky solution since you end up losing hours each day of your life. From a preparedness point of view, while growing food is a valuable asset, it can be done without having to move too far away from it all. An isolated homestead is all but impossible to defend during troubled times and having all your assets concentrated in one property alone can be a disaster on its own if ever forced to bug out.

4)Lack of self-criticism when it comes to fitness
Maybe the most common problem of all among preppers and survivalists is being in such poor shape that they wont be able to work, fight, walk or swim as they think they will when needed to do so. In fact in many cases people are not just out of shape, but fat to the point where combined with a sedentary lifestyle, their own health is their number one death risk factor yet they focus on EMPs, earthquakes or the breakdown of society, while remaining oblivious to the fact that whats really breaking down is their own arteries.
Consequence: After years of neglecting their own bodies it eventually catches up with people. Numerous diseases, worn joints, fatigue, and poor health in general eventually becomes a problem that in the best of cases ends up costing thousands of dollars, undermines your quality of life and ability to work, let alone survive disasters. Worst case scenario you don’t have to worry about a thing anymore because you’re six feet under.

5)Lack of self-criticism regarding social skills
So far I’ve mentioned aspects that are known to most and have been discussed often, but lack of social skills and ostracism are very common in the community and rarely addressed. With the understanding of some of the more shady sociopolitical constructions comes a rejection of those that don’t understand such manipulations. People that don’t get how disasters may occur, how likely some of them are, are often referred to as “sheep” by those involved in the preparedness community. Yet, again, this works as yet another excuse so as to not try to be social, don’t bother getting along with people that may think different. The problem is, we are all different, and with the excuse of getting along better with like-minded people your circle of acquaintances becomes increasingly small. First you stop hanging out with anyone that has different views, then you stop getting along with anyone that isnt in the same boat regarding survival, and soon enough even your own family bothers you.
Consequence: You end up alone. Families that fall apart, problems with the wife or husband, problems with kids, parents, problem with school teachers, neighbors, boss, employees. At the end of the day you need friends, neighbors and acquaintances, a network of people that helps one another. With enough self-absorption and introversion, you end up losing the ones you love the most, and then what’s the point of preparing at all?
Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Warning signs for Argentina? Bitcoin in Argentina?

Clearly you were right that it was time to get out of Argentina.  They are having very high inflation once again.   What did you see as the warning signs?  How did you know it was time to bug out?
Also, do you know if people in Argentina have taken to using Bitcoin as a store of value or for trading?   It seems like it could be handy if you want to avoid pesos or to get money out of Argentina.   Is it getting more popular fast?
   -- Vince

Hello Vince,
The right time to leave Argentina was right before the economic collapse of 2001, when you could have left taking 1 US dollar for every Argentine peso you had saved during your life. For those that didn’t leave then, 2002 was the year in which hundreds of thousands escaped the sinking ship. Since then the country has been sliding into an ever darker shadow of its former self, with rampant inflation, crime and sociopolitical problems.
For years I kept waiting for an opportunity to move to USA. Several times there were a few glimpses of hope, someone being able to offer me the necessary work contract in America, but it always ended up falling apart for one reason or another.  It was number of events that made us see we were running out of time. 

Regarding crime and security we realized we were no longer living. Constantly afraid to even walk around our neighborhood and being careful where you went at all times. That level of crime paralyzes you and you basically stop living just so as to survive.
The death of a friend of mine from my shooting club was another slap that woke us up to the reality around us: People were getting gunned down around us, it was a matter of time until we ran out of luck ourselves.
Finally it was Cristina Kirchners reelection the thing that made us understand we simply had no more time left. Many statements had been made suggesting an eventual USd dollar ban and tighter control over the media as well as the general population.  You could see that they wanted to crack down on the purchase of foreign currency, street currency dealers where getting arrested and intimidated.

Because of all these reasons I ventured to guess (and it turned out I was right) that the government was simply waiting until they got reelected before taking some of the more unpopular, draconian measures. Right after they won, in a matter of days the restrictions, control and intimidation campaign was on full force.

Regarding Bitcoin, it has received some attention in Argentina with about 10.000 users, given that people are always looking for ways to escape from the Argentine peso. Bitcoin mining was until not long ago fairly attractive. The price of electricity made Bitcoin mining viable but in the last year with power prices rising and inflation making mining hardware very expensive the interest in Bitcoin is slowing down some. Bitcoin isnt as popular as in other countries but it is accepted in some stores, even for the buying of real estate although on street stores its more of a curiosity.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Security Cameras an Door Stoppers

Hi Fernando,
Great blog! I enjoy all of your updates.
Wondering if you have any opinions on a good security camera. I was
looking for a “search” function on your site to see if you’ve covered
this before, but couldn’t find one. Any insight you have would be
appreciated! Thanks!
Hi Tom,
The Zmodo Surveillance kit includes 4 night cameras, 4G phone and internet access, motion detection activation and 500GB storage. Its ranking #1 in Amazon with pretty good reviews so I’d go for something like that. These days cameras are as much of a deterrent as an alarm, maybe even more. The alarm is still essential, but at the end of the day when the alarm goes off you only know someone broke into your house but you have no evidence of who it was. With motion detecting cameras you get notified of the activity as well as keep ID of who it was, that’s a powerful resource. Whatever it is that you buy, its important to get notifications on your phone so as to know what going on when you’re not home.
Zmodo PKD-DK4216-500GB H.264 Internet & 3G Phone Accessible 4-Channel DVR with 4 Night Vision Cameras and 500 GB HD
For larger properties I would also look into installing some exterior motion detectors.For 40 buck they arent that expensive and even having just one in your driveway would given you crucial warning time.
Chamberlain CWA2000 Wireless Motion Alert System (Black)
Chamberlain CWA2000 Wireless Motion Alert System
Fernado how useful would this be for american doors in your opinion?
Door Stopper - Resists Over Two Tons of Force - Protect Your Home with the Club
Door Stopper – Resists Over Two Tons of Force – Protect Your Home with the Club
Hey Jim,
It sure would add to the security of the door given that you basically add another point of contact, one that is also pretty sturdy, stronger than most door locks in use. It’s a pretty simple device but for the money it will make the door much harder to kick open. Keep in mind though that the door itself is the key weak point. A hollow core wooden door will break before the stopper does. If you combine this with a strong metal door you can have some pretty good results. Back in Argentina my door was an armored, custom made door, locking on all four sides. That can get pretty expensive but it provides the best protection. For good results on a budget, metal doors are a good option. Even the ones that aren’t specifically armored security doors can take a beating and still hold strong.
Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Enjoying Halloween and making the most of it

I always loved Halloween. Its not celebrated that much in Argentina but its been one of my fondest memories from the time I lived in Boston.
Not much of a Halloween spirit in South America, there’s some parties here and there but that’s that, mostly for adults looking for yet another excuse to party. Trick or treating is simply impossible because of the obvious crime problem.
But now that we can celebrate it we do enjoy it. Sure, another excuse for consumerism and what not, but kids have a blast and that what matters the most. Enjoy it and make the most of it!
Here’s some tips :
*Have a blast and spend some quality time with the family. At the end of the day, that’s what matters the most.
*What’s Halloween without pumpkin carving? It’s a good time to teach safe and responsible knife use to children that are old and mature enough to handle one under adult supervision.
*Don’t throw it away! Make pumpkin pie, soup or some nice snacks with the pumpkin seeds. Teach your kids not to waste. Rinse the seeds with water and dry them up, mix with a bit of olive oil and a tad of salt, spread over oven paper and put it in the oven for 15 minutes or until the first seed pops. A bit hard but tasty. Tastes somewhat like popcorn.
*Use trick or treating as an excuse to get to know your neighbors a bit better. We’ve often talked about how important your community is. When things get tough, there’s very few people you’ll be able to count on, but that simply means you should have a more extensive network, not a smaller one.
*Teach your kids self-control when it comes to eating candy afterwards, have just a couple pieces and learn to stop. These are all small gestures, but in the end it works towards forming a stronger personality.
*If you can manage it, invite some kids over for a Halloween sleepover. Learn who your kid’s friends are, become more social. Again, a good moment to speak with your kid’s friends parents.
*Don’t buy a ton of stuff. Its nice to improvise and try making some costumes yourself. I’ve done projects before involving glued paper, recycling, some metal cutting for a helmet and cutting some wood. Its no big deal but it’s a good excuse to have your kids try some tools, maybe for the first time.
*Spooky night games are a great excuse to use some flashlights. Kids get to handle them, learn how to use them. This Halloween we’re going to a museum that makes a night scary tour in our town. You’re supposed to dress up and bring a flashlight (yes, we have enough flashlights for everyone … :) )
Just a few suggestions folks, happy Halloween!

 Fernando “FerFAL” Aguirre is the author of “The Modern Survival Manual: Surviving the Economic Collapse” and “Bugging Out and Relocating: When Staying is not an Option”.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

The crumbling infrastructure across U.S.

The video and article linked bellow explain the kind of problem I wrote about in my first book “The Modern Survival Manual” when explaining the slow decline and overall degradation of infrastructure after an economic collapse.

Infastructure issues across U.S. not an easy fix


From rough roads to dangerous bridges and broken sidewalks, America’s infrastructure is showing its age.
And while we can’t see it, deep underground, the country’s network of water pipes is aging too. It’s a growing problem that’s causing huge water main breaks across the country.
Fixing the problem isn’t easy or cheap, CBS News’ Brandon Scott reports.
When one water main ruptured in July, it looked like the scene from a summer blockbuster, with a sky-high geyser blasting through a giant crater in Los Angeles’ famous Sunset Boulevard.
Twenty million gallons of water poured into the street, flooding the nearby UCLA campus.
Then, just two weeks ago in West Hollywood, another pipe burst, turning the iconic Sunset Strip into a raging river.
It was the latest high-profile rupture in America’s second-largest city, which every day averages three water main breaks.
“It’s critical that we have pipe that can handle the loads that we put on it,” said Jeff Bray, a superintendent with LA’s water department.
His crew is trying to get ahead of the problem by replacing aging pipelines before they break.
The new pipes are made of welded steel and lined in cement. Once one is connected, it will handle a water flow of 51 million gallons every day
“With our budget the way it currently is, we’re on a 300-year cycle to replace the smaller pipes,” Bray said. “It’s not fast enough.”
But Los Angeles isn’t alone. In Oklahoma, a summer water main break flooded a Tulsa road, leaving resident Cassie Hill stranded. ….
Some people expect a sudden end of the world event, worthy of Hollywood where it conveniently unfolds within one hour and thirty minutes. In reality is a slow grinding process. The power and water grid, roads, gas lines, communications, transportation, even bridges and tunnels, it all requires constant maintenance. When the infrastructure is as massive as it is in America, it is already hard to keep up with it in normal times. When combined with the limitations of an economic crisis, you do end up having serious problems down the road. Its very difficult to keep the grid in shape and it can be downright impossible when the money simply isn’t there. All you can do is run around patching it up as it crumbles, within your limited resources.
Water supply problems, more frequent blackouts, broken roads, and a general lack of maintenance of public infrastructure is to be expected in the years to come. Services will also go through a similar degradation, expect less (and worse) public services, not enough cops on the streets, slower response time for medical and fire emergencies.
The degradation is physical as it is social and cultural. Schools will suffer a similar fate, with public schools showing a clear lack of maintenance while private schools or schools in high end neighborhoods being better taken care of. As funds simply aren’t enough, efforts will be focused on keeping the nicer areas afloat while letting the lower class sectors drop further down the socioeconomic ladder. An economic crisis isnt a matter of years, it’s a matter of decades. It’s a matter of entire generations suffering the consequences. In a country as large as the United States some States and some counties will fare better than others depending on how bad the situation was pre-economic crisis times and how much funds they currently have, but I believe it’s important to know what to look for and understand what’s going on, why this is happening and therefore prepare better for it.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Best Survivor's Torch: Streamlight Sidewinder Compact II

Hey Fernando,
I bought this on your recommendation. It is light enough to counter any size and shape issue for EDC and is my go to, primarily for the battery options.
I tested the IR light with my unit and found no light emitted. Have you tested with yours? Let me know.
Thanks for your work. I have a long history with you and am glad to see some relatively speaking recent additions who have taken your ideas mainstream. Good for everyone. But you have the respect.
Last one - I recommend your listeners learn Spanish. I saw how the little I knew helped me in mediating court disputes in the inner cities. Spanish speakers are our neighbors. I recommend pimsleur.

The Streamlight Sidewinder II can use either AA, AAA or CR123A. That's versatility.
Hey Jon, glad you liked it.
No, the IR is not supposed to emit any visible light. You will see that there's some visible when you look at it through a camera like I do in the video review. Keep in mind that the IR LED is supposed to be used along with night vision gear.
The Streamlight Sidewinder Compact II has certain capabilities that, in my opinon, make it hands down the best survival and preparedness flashlight.
Its tough as nails, and bright enough for most tasks. You have the choice of LEDs, white, red, blue and IR, as well as strobe. All LEDs have four output modes up to 80 lumens. 80 lumens sounds pretty low, but it is comparable to other brands that claim 100-120 lumen output. The plain reflector also focuses the light a lot more, giving it greater throw and better practical use at longer distances.
So far it sounds as if there’s dozens of better lights out there, but what makes this one so special is that its capable of running on a single battery cell, either AA, AAA or CR123A, and it does so effectively without any glitches. This ability to practically eat any battery you come across is priceless during emergencies and disasters, especially long term ones when you may find yourself scrounging for batteries.

Wrapping up the system, the Sidewinder Compact II comes with a helmet attachment and a very sturdy headband so as to use it as a headlamp. The flashlight has a rugged spring steel clip, which combined with the 90º angle of the reflector allows you to clip it to gear, even shirts, or lay it on the floor at an angle.
This is a pure-breed military torch. Its dust proof, waterproof and even clicking the rubber mode to turn it on is silent (the clicky makes no click sound). Being tough as nails is a big advantage in my opinion.
The only disadvantage I see to the flashlight is that it’s a bit bulky (though vey light weight) and it doesn’t fit as well in smaller jean pockets. I did carry it as my EDC light for a few weeks, still do every once in a while, but it does feel blocky compared to the roll of mint sized Eagletac D25C that I carry more often. This is purely personal. As you say yourself, you can EDC this light with no problem if you feel like doing so.
If I could only have one, I feel the Sidewinder Compact II is the best light you can have when things go wrong.


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Gun Control: Defensive Gun Use (Part II)

This is the second submission of a multi-part essay by Jim V on Gun Control. Thanks Jim for the interesting read! Its nice to see how so many anti-gun people are lucky to be able to pay others to hold (and use in their defense) those nasty guns for them.
Defensive Gun Use
In part 2 of my series on gun control, I would like to examine defensive gun use. Could it be, as former gun control advocate turned gun rights supporter Dr. John Lott of Univ. of Chicago maintains, in his eponymous book More Guns, Less Crime, that we are safer with more guns? The young boy who drove off two home invaders in Houston in 2012 – reported at Houston’s KHOU TV – with his father’s AR-15 “evil” assault rifle would certainly agree. See www.youtube.com/watch?v=j-q2zHIovOE.  And here’s another story of  an“evil” AR-15 used to drive off intruders: New York Resident Scares the Hell out of Intruders” – video at http://www.thedailysheeple.com/ar-15-defense-weapon-new-york-resident-scares-the-hell-out-of-intruders_012013; story also found at http://www.kfiam640.com/pages/MoreStimulatingTalkRadio.html?feed=104668&article=10729296   And then there were the young students in Rochester, NY who thankfully were able to use an AR-15 to protect their lives during a break in – see http://www.13wham.com/news/local/story/Homeowners-Scare-Off-Burglars/7yaLSXAvCUGBkwgAZpGO4g.cspx. Finally, another story of an AR-15 used to save lives, this time in Detroit, where armed robbers retreat when they realize they are outgunned by a single guard with an AR-15: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hwRoXIk1H3Q&feature=player_detailpage#t=33s. As a matter of fact, as the non-stereotypical gun owner Dan Baum – who is a Jewish Democrat who wrote for the New Yorker-  noted, while “Joe Nocera at the Times runs a daily tally of gun killings. He's not running a daily tally of how many people defend themselves with guns. For one thing we don't know about it most of the time. David Hemenway at Harvard is very pro gun-control and he thinks it happens about 80,000 times a year. If that's true, that means that guns are saving 10 times as many people as they're killing.” http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2013/03/what-liberals-need-to-understand-about-gun-guys/273736/
Similarly, as Aubrey Blankenship and Celia Bigelow told Piers Morgan (video and story at http://www.wnd.com/2013/01/22-year-old-schools-piers-morgan-on-guns/#yi5kmq2Ub6bbVgmH.99), there are very good reasons, particularly for women, to have not only guns, but specifically AR-15s. Stated the two ladies in a companion column in the National Review, “One, they’re lightweight,” the 22-year-old Bigelow responded. “They’re quite accurate. I can shoot them much more accurately than a handgun or a shotgun. And three … I want a gun that can hold a lot of ammo, because if I’m faced with an intruder or multiple intruders that come into my home, I want to make sure I have enough ammo to get the job done, especially if they’re armed. … I don’t have to take the time to reload… We saw a situation in Georgia just a couple weeks ago where a mom was hiding in her attic with her two children when an intruder entered her home. She had a handgun that only had six rounds in it. She fired all six rounds, missed the intruder once, hit him five times in the face and in the neck. And he still lived.”
And given that there are around eight thousand home invasions per year (and not one conducted by well-mannered, non-violent Boy Scouts), with at least one in five households experiencing a break-in at some point, the people above are just the tip of the iceberg.
But returning to Dr. Lott, here is Exhibit A: scarcely one week before the Colorado tragedy, a similar situation had an opposite ending in Florida, where 71 year old Samuel Williams stopped an armed robbery when two masked men entered the Palms Internet Cafe around 10 p.m. Friday, July 13, 2012. Make your own conclusion from the surveillance camera, which captures it all: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wZNC2VwyaPU&feature=player_embedded#t=0s . Exhibit B: Scarcely a month after the Colorado theatre shooting, on the opposite side of the country, an Orange County, CA. jewelry and coin dealer thwarted and armed robbery – and possible employee deaths – by defending herself with her pistol. Video surveillance footage at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZjXJBpV9YRI  And as if this wasn’t enough, the Oregon Clackamas Town Center Mall mall shooting – which was overshadowed by the Connecticut school shooting a few days later – was stopped by a citizen, Nick Melti,  exercising his right of concealed carry. Full details of this incident – not reported by the lamestream media – are at http://www.examiner.com/article/media-blackout-oregon-mall-shooter-was-stopped-by-an-armed-citizen.  At the risk of overkill (pun intended), here’s another video of a 65 yr. old woman thwarting FIVE armed robbers with her pistol in her store: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PoDNJQtNVoc&feature=player_embedded#t=0s. In fact, it appears to be the case that, as ex-gangsta rap artist turned Christian rap singer Travis Tyler, known as Thi’sl notes, more gun restrictions are not the answer, as this will not stop criminals from getting guns. But listen to Thi’sl in his own words: http://www.cbn.com/cbnnews/us/2013/January/Ex-Gangsta-Rapper-More-Gun-Laws-Not-the-Answer/ (note that Thi’sl also identifies fatherlessness as a “huge role” in gun violence, as well as the issue of mental illness). Interestingly, Mark Mattioli, who lost his six year old son at Sandy Hook, also stated before a gun violence task force shortly after the shooting that guns are categorically not the problem – rather, it is mental health issues, issues that stem from media violence, lack of personal integrity, lack of parenting, etc. A Mattioli video speaking to this issue is at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fqpzOSYqX3c&feature=player_embedded#t=8s. Ann Coulter speaks to the Mattioli video at http://www.humanevents.com/2013/04/10/coulter-liberals-go-crazy-for-the-mentally-ill/, noting that the one critical piece missing from the leftist analysis of gun violence is that they refuse to deal with that fact that the vast majority of gun violence is caused by mentally ill. Says Coulter: “Mass shootings don’t correlate with gun ownership; they correlate with not locking up schizophrenics” and “For most of the 20th century, from 1900 to 1970, there was an average of four mass public shootings per decade. Throughout the ’70s, as the loony bins were being emptied, the average number of mass shootings suddenly shot up to 13. In the 3.3 decades since 1980, after all the mental institutions had been turned into condos, mass shootings skyrocketed to 36 on average per decade. And as exhibits for this exact issue, see Adam Lanza, Seung-Hui Cho at Virginia Tech, James Holmes, Jared Loughner, paranoid schizophrenic One L. Goh, who murdered a number of people at a Christian college in 2012, Nidal Hassan, and others. For a complete list of mentally ill committing crimes, Coulter directs readers to E. Fuller Torrey’s book, The Insanity Defense: How America’s Failure to Treat the Seriously Mentally Ill Endangers Its Citizens. Fox News also does a concise expose of the issue at http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2013/04/10/it-not-knives-it-not-guns-it-mental-illness-that-kills/
But returning to the issue of the deterrence and such things as concealed carry, it turns out that the leftist Mother Jones article claiming to have produced its own study of all public shootings in the last 30 years, which concluded “In not a single case was the killing stopped by a civilian using a gun,” is an outright fabrication - in looking at just the most recent Oregon episode. And as Ann Coulter pointed out in an article shortly after the CT shooting, found at http://www.humanevents.com/2012/12/19/ann-coulter-we-know-how-to-stop-school-shootings/  Mother Jones, in typical leftist fashion “…reaches its conclusion by simply excluding all cases where an armed civilian stopped the shooter: They looked only at public shootings where four or more people were killed, i.e., the ones where the shooter wasn’t stopped.”  Don’t try this trick in a stats 101 class, or you will be flunked. Coulter’s article provides some extremely enlightening examples of mass murders stopped by an armed bystander: 
– Mayan Palace Theater, San Antonio, Texas, same week as the CT shooting: Jesus Manuel Garcia shoots at a movie theater, a police car and bystanders from the nearby China Garden restaurant; as he enters the movie theater, guns blazing, an armed off-duty cop shoots Garcia four times, stopping the attack. Total dead: Zero. (More details on this theatre-shooting-that-wasn’t because the shooter was stopped by someone with concealed carry  is at http://freedomoutpost.com/2012/12/the-theater-shooting-the-main-stream-media-didnt-focus-on-why/ )
– Winnemucca, Nev., 2008: Ernesto Villagomez opens fire in a crowded restaurant; concealed carry permit-holder shoots him dead. Total dead: Two. (I’m excluding the shooters’ deaths in these examples.)
– Appalachian School of Law, 2002: Crazed immigrant shoots the dean and a professor, then begins shooting students; as he goes for more ammunition, two armed students point their guns at him, allowing a third to tackle him. Total dead: Three.
– Santee, Calif., 2001: Student begins shooting his classmates — as well as the “trained campus supervisor”; an off-duty cop who happened to be bringing his daughter to school that day points his gun at the shooter, holding him until more police arrive. Total dead: Two.
– Pearl High School, Mississippi, 1997: After shooting several people at his high school, student heads for the junior high school; assistant principal Joel Myrick retrieves a .45 pistol from his car and points it at the gunman’s head, ending the murder spree. Total dead: Two.
– Edinboro, Pa., 1998: A student shoots up a junior high school dance being held at a restaurant; restaurant owner pulls out his shotgun and stops the gunman. Total dead: One. (Coulter neglected to cite some other cases, such as the high school shooting by Luke Woodham in Pearl, Miss., or the New Life Church shooting in Colorado Springs, CO., where armed volunteers stopped the mayhem immediately.
Not included in Coulter’s article was a shooter who opened fire two weeks after the Sandy Hill massacre. Unfortunately, he did it in a place where people were armed – the Gloucester Township Police HQ – and, while people were wounded, no one was killed except the shooter. http://news.yahoo.com/3-cops-shot-nj-police-station-143541945--abc-news-topstories.html
There’s one more gunman incident Coulter also missed: On Aug. 29, 2010, and armed gunman, Thomas Richard Cowan,  entered Sullivan Central High School in Blountville, TN., and pointed his gun at the head of the school principal. This may well have ended up another Sandy Hook event – except for the fact that a Sullivan County Sheriff’s Deputy, Carolyn Gudger, was stationed at the school, and confronted the gunman with her own gun. Cowan retreated from this confrontation, and was later killed when he pointed his weapon at other police who had arrived since the initial confrontation. No Sandy Hook here. That’s because there was armed resistance.
The Marc J. Victor article cited elsewhere in this paper adds several more incidences to the list above, where an armed populace prevented a Sandy Hook massacre. Victor cites  a 1997 high school shooting in Pearl, MS., stopped when the vice principal retrieved a handgun from his truck; a 1998 middle school shooting ended when a man living next door heard gunfire and apprehended the shooter with his shotgun; a 2002 terrorist attack at an Israeli school was quickly stopped by an armed teacher and a school guard; a 2002 law school shooting in Grundy, Virginia came to an abrupt conclusion when students carrying firearms confronted the shooter; a 2007 mall shooting in Ogden, Utah ended when an armed off-duty police officer intervened; a 2009 workplace shooting in Houston, Texas was halted by two co-workers who carried concealed handguns. What part of “guns saved lives” don’t leftists get?
Let me answer the question above, if I may. Here’s what leftists don’t get – and which illustrates they really don’t ultimately care as much about each precious life lost at Sandy Hook as they do their precious agenda (and yes… please do use your best Gollum voice from Lord of the Rings when you say the word  leftist “precious agenda”; and no, our guns are not precious to most gun owners – rather, our freedom and liberty are precious, and guns are simply a guarantor of that). One story – which represents thousands of other unreported stories every year - with the headline of Woman Hiding with Kids Shoots Home Intruder Multiple Times, illustrates the point very simply: A quick précis of the story will suffice. A woman hiding in her attic with children shot an intruder multiple times before fleeing to safety Friday… The incident happened at a home on Henderson Ridge Lane in Loganville around 1 p.m. The woman was working in an upstairs office when she spotted a strange man outside a window, according to Walton County Sheriff Joe Chapman. He said she took her 9-year-old twins to a crawlspace before the man broke in using a crowbar. But the man eventually found the family. The perpetrator opens that door. Of course, at that time he’s staring at her, her two children and a .38 revolver,” Chapman told Channel 2’s Kerry Kavanaugh. The woman then shot him five times, but he survived, Chapman said. He said the woman ran out of bullets but threatened to shoot the intruder if he moved…” http://www.wsbtv.com/news/news/local/woman-hiding-kids-shoots-intruder/nTm7s/
This story has more than meets the eye. Suppose it was not just a single home invader, but three or four – and she was a resident of shot capacity limiting New York or another state banning those evil assault rifles that carry too many rounds? What if she – like many of us – wasn’t such good shot, under duress (and possible darkness), and missed with her six rounds? Then what? While she may have to abide by the round capacity laws, the criminal – who is already a criminal and thus doesn’t care – can carry a high capacity weapon on his side, making the law even more dangerous for the law abiding citizen – not safer.
Pam Loman of Shawnee, OK. went through the same experience a few weeks later, scaring off three men trying to break into her home. http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2013/01/13/Oklahoma-Woman-Stops-Robbers-With-Her-Gun reports: “She was cleaning her home on Friday when a man knocked on her front door, while two others stayed in the car. When she did not answer the man resorted to banging on the door. Mrs. Loman got scared and went for her gun.“So my instinct was to go get a gun. I don’t know why, I never in my life felt like I needed to go get a gun,” said Mrs. Loman. She had both hands on her .32-caliber pistol when the man knocked down her door. “And just all of a sudden, with one kick, he knocked the door completely in. The frame came flying down. Things came flying everywhere,” she said. “And he saw that I had the gun, and he grabbed the door handle and pulled the door shut.” Mrs. Loman said if he did not run away and came into the house she would have shot him.”
At the risk of – pun intended – overkill, here are ten other stories cited by John Hawkins that you may review to understand how guns saved the lives of men or women, stopped rapes and saved the lives of children:  http://townhall.com/columnists/johnhawkins/2013/02/02/10-stories-that-prove-guns-save-lives-n1503549/page/full/. Another similar story of a woman saved from being beaten – possibly to death – by a concealed gun carrier who protected her is here: http://fox6now.com/2013/03/12/marine-with-concealed-carry-permit-stops-man-from-beating-woman/ .  And here’s a few more for the road in the event the above is not enough to convince you of the utility of guns to save lives:
·         A convenience store clerk and an immigrant defend themselves against attackers in Florida. The attackers fired first and were aiming to kill, these men defended themselves and protected the innocent. http://www.miamiherald.com/2013/01/15/3183760/two-robbers-shot-dead-in-hollywood.html

·         A man in San Antonio walks out to find a man going through the contents of his locked vehicle. He confronts the man and lawfully defends his life and his property. http://www.kens5.com/news/SAPD-Car-thief-killed-another-wounded-outside-Stone-Oak-home-186923501.html
Thankfully, something like the above would never happen to gun grabbers Dianne Feinstein, Chuck Shumer or any of the Hollywood glitterati, as they are surrounded by guards, who are armed. In fact, Obama signed a bill Jan., 2013 that rolls back a mid-1990s law that imposed a 10-year limit on Secret Service protection for former presidents. The bill, which will cost American taxpayers millions of dollars will have Obama (and other presidents) protected for life as well as their children up to age 16, by armed guard.  Hypocritically, during an ABC Nightline interview recorded before the Sandy Hook shooting, Obama said one of the benefits of his re-election was the ability “to have men with guns around at all times,” in order to protect his daughters (see http://www.bizpacreview.com/2012/12/29/obama-admits-to-wanting-men-with-guns-guarding-his-daughters-12581 ) The Sidwell Friends school attended by Obama’s daughters in Washington D.C. has no less than 11 armed security guards on duty at all times (http://www.breitbart.com/Big-Government/2012/12/23/School-Obama-s-Daughters-Attend-Has-11-Armed-Guards-Not-Counting-Secret-Service ). Of course, the NRA suggestion of arming trained school staff for the poor unwashed masses at the common public school has been derided by the elite – that’s only for the “special” people! Or as the Washington Times put it, As The Washington Times put it:
“It is important to remember that while they are talking about disarming you and me, they are not talking about disarming themselves. They will still be coddled in their fortresses. The closer you get to the Capitol the more armed guards there are. Up close, there are bomb proof guard shacks, literally, on every street corner. Squads of machine gun-carrying guards dot the magnificent marble buildingscape at all times. Leaders in Congress ride around with escorts of huge armed men. Is that because what they do every day is more dangerous than what you and I do every day” Cited from http://www.ammoland.com/2013/02/washington-times-gun-free-zones-are-only-for-the-little-people/#ixzz2JlOzSVO7 . Meanwhile, what happens to the average citizen who – as in the case of post-Katrina New Orleans – is disarmed by the “authorities?” Hear for yourself: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cVyV9ojTA_I . Better, listen to real police themselves tell you that “you are on your own” until they can get there – whenever that is. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=1AQ1WBb81BE#t=14s
Below: Sidwell Friends, another gun free school – NOT

Sen. Diane Feinstein, who wants “Mr. and Mrs. America” to “turn in” their guns,(see http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=blXkl9YVoHo#t=2s where she states this ) admitted to availing herself of concealed carry for her own protection at one point – see http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=B1EObqM9Z0s#t=2s . Of course, our aforementioned gun control nut NY Mayor Michael Bloomberg has armed bodyguards at all times, and, in personal communication with a friend and neighbor who is a recently retired senior staff member from the Illinois State Police, he noted that at least up to 2009 when he retired, Bill Ayers, the leftist, Obama crypto-crony who was co-founder of the communist  Weather Underground (that conducted bombings of public buildings, including police stations, the U.S. Capitol Building, and the Pentagon), whenever he was in a classroom teaching at Univ. of Illinois Chicago, was always assigned to have armed state police in his classroom for protection. It’s just you, dear reader,that are left to your own (unarmed) devices when you are threatened.
And let’s not forget the ever-hypocritical  gun controller Michael Moore, who also maintains armed bodyguards, one of whom was arrested for carrying an unlicensed weapon at New York’s JFK airport back in 2005. http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,144921,00.html#ixzz2FnQC65J3 . Yes, this is the selfsame Mikey Moore who owned shared of Haliburton (see Peter Schweizer’s book Do As I Say, Not as I Do: Profiles in Liberal Hypocrisy) and has both an extremely expensive penthouse in NY, as well as a massive, multimillion dollar mansion on Torch Lake, MI., as seen below.

(Of course, the ultimate example of hypocrisy was illustrated by NY Governor Cuomo who stated after Sandy Hook, in granting permission for Learjet leftist Hollywood  to bring AR-15s to New York, that "There's no reason not to make a change ... to give an industry comfort, "especially ... [one] we want to do business in the state." Apparently, Cuomo didn’t desire to hinder any of those uber-leftist, gun-control fanatics Hollywooders  from making movies that glorify the criminal violence he's claims he’s trying to end.)
In contrast to the heavily defended Sidwell Friends school, or the latte leftists protected by gun toting guards,  the shootings in gun-free zones invariably result in far higher casualty figures — the Sikh temple in Oak Creek, Wis. (six dead); Virginia Tech, in Blacksburg, Va. (32 dead); Columbine High School, Columbine, Colo. (12 dead); the Amish school in Lancaster County, Pa. (five little girls killed); a public school, Craighead County, Ark. (five killed, including four little girls).
And here’s one more question: What if it is not “only” a half dozen people killed, but rather something like the horrific Beslan School massacre in gun control-happy Russia in 2004? 334 people were slaughtered – over half children – by Chechnyan Islamists. Good thing everyone in the school was unarmed – right?
One might consider – dare I quote him? – Michael Moore, in perhaps the single lucid comment of his entire career. Regarding the Sandy Hook massacre, he wrote in the Huffington Post: “The killer only ceased his slaughter when he saw that cops were swarming onto the school grounds — i.e, the men with the guns. When he saw the guns a-coming, he stopped the bloodshed and killed himself. Guns on police officers prevented another 20 or 40 or 100 deaths from happening. Guns sometimes work.”  Of course, Moore goes off on another deranged tangent after this, but in this case he actually got one paragraph right. And perhaps, with the direction our society is going, a properly secured firearm on school premises, wielded by fully trained school staff, may be what is needed. Why should there be a wait be for the police to arrive as more death occurs?
In fact, police themselves, as a rule, support civilian use of guns, and not just high profile cases such as several sheriffs in Colorado, Utah, or the sheriff of Milwaukee, WI. Here’s what police, themselves, think, per a questionnaire submitted to 15,000 law-enforcement personnel, asking about civilian gun use:
“When asked what the likely outcome would have been at Aurora and Newtown had a legally armed civilian been there, 80 percent said there would have been fewer casualties; 6.2 percent said it would have prevented casualties altogether. Only 5.5 percent thought it would have led to greater loss of life.
When asked what could be done to prevent future mass public shootings, the most popular answer — picked by 28.8 percent – was for more permissive concealed carry policies for civilians. More aggressive institutionalization of the mentally ill was the choice of 19.6 percent. More armed guards were favored by 15.8 percent. Of course, none of these solutions are acceptable to the gun grabbers. Improved background checks were in fourth place, the choice of 14 percent of the respondents, followed by longer prison terms when guns are used in violent crimes (7.9 percent). What did the law-enforcement professionals have to say about about the left’s favorite solutions? A meager 1.5 percent put tighter limits on weapons sales at the top of their list. While legislative restrictions on “assault weapons” and larger magazines didn’t even get a nod from one out of 100 of the boys and girls in blue, it was the choice of .9 percent.
When it comes to making the public safer, including our children, “the only professional group devoted to limiting and defeating gun violence as part of their sworn responsibility” has the right answer: Get more arms in the right hands. And do a better job of getting the truly crazy off the streets.” (Cited from http://personalliberty.com/2013/04/19/a-huge-defeat-for-the-gun-grabbers/)
Dr. Lott, the former gun control advocate turned gun supporter, documents many thousands of similar situations where civilian guns saved lives, but here is one woman, in her own words, discussing after the fact how her gun saved her life: http://bcove.me/zgbghtxu. As a matter of fact, Gun Owners of America, at http://gunowners.org/sk0802.htm, cites statistics indicating guns are used 2.5 million times a year in self-defense, or around 80 times a day (other statistics estimate this number could range as low as 1.5 million, but either number is a lot!). This includes 200,000 women a year using guns to defend themselves against sexual abuse – in fact, here is the actual 911 recording of some woman doing exactly that: http://www.therightscoop.com/holy-crap-911-call-of-woman-defending-herself-against-stalker-who-broke-into-her-house/. It is precisely these situations that the gun grabbers would make worse!   As a matter of fact, as of 2008, armed citizens killed more violent bad guys than the police (1,527 vs. 606).  Overall, guns in the United States are used 80 times more often to prevent crime than they are to take lives (http://thetruthwins.com/archives/you-wont-believe-the-crazy-things-that-are-being-said-about-gun-owners ). Cato Institute has a complete article on this topic for your further reading, Tough Targets: When Criminals Face Armed Resistance from Citizens," In fact, renowned author and poet Maya Angelou is a poster child (make that “elder”) for using guns in self-defense, telling Time Magazine in 2013 she once stopped a a presumed attempted burglary at here home by firing her gun. Said Angelou: “I do like to have guns around… I don’t like to carry them, but I like – if somebody is going to come into my house and I have not put out the welcome mat – I want to stop them.”  http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,2139706,00.html
Interestingly, during the composition of this paper, during a radio broadcast on WMBI radio, April 23, 2013, at 1:15 AM,  a caller who identified himself as George, the owner of a limousine company, stated something very interesting, that corroborates the above. He noted that, as airlines at one point prohibited people from transporting guns, criminals in Florida would follow people who took out rental cars at airports to rob them, knowing they would be unarmed. Just a small tidbit, lost to history, and ignored by the politically correct – but for those murdered during these crimes, including children – the gun grabbers are complicit.
And what happens when people are not able to arm themselves? Just ask the citizens of Hungerford, England, where twenty years ago Michael Ryan went on a shooting spree, killing 16 people. As no one in the town was armed, he took over eight hours before anyone with a firearm was alerted and able to stop the rampage. While Obama used children a stage props, including plaintive letters from children asking him to ban guns in his January, 2013 anti-gun dog and pony anti-gun sales pitch, he forgot to discuss the recent cases of Kendra St. Claire, who used a gun to protect herself from a home intruder, a mother who shot an intruder to protect her two young sons, or an 18 year old widowed mother who shot two intruders to protect her baby.