HOLLY NOTE: Whatever your political persuasion, put those thoughts aside for the next two minutes and read this first-hand account of the help FEMA didn't give those in need after Hurricane Ike. The American Red Cross' lack of assistance is a shock. You'll also read some eye-opening information on how insurance companies operate after a disaster. There are exceptions in every disaster scenario, but since Hurricane Katrina, insurance horror stories are increasingly the norm. Cheryl's narrative underscores the need for personal responsibility in the preparedness arena and why you must rely on yourself and your family to see you through. Do what you can now to prepare and forget FEMA. IF they come to your aid, consider it an unexpected plus. As this article points out, just because they show up, doesn't mean you count on FEMA beyond a blue tarp.
October 19, 2008
Colin Powell endorsed Obama this morning. I had told everyone I would go whichever direction Colin would go. Well I told everyone that but in reality I surely would not have voted Repug. From the corporate paid and run US news I switched to the UK news. I checked out the Guardian and found out that Wall Street top bankers will get as much as 70 billion each in bonuses this year. My comment on this is “May the fleas of a thousand camels infest in the bankers armpits.” That said I must also say three million Americans got scammed **BIG TIME.*** There's more to come. Much more. They've only just begun to get started. They must be laughing their asses off now. They just STOLE our money and in some cases house as well. And all we did was 'whined a bit on the internet'. It just encourages them to do it again and again.
So after reading that I filtered through some insurance papers. We have been dealing with FEMA, Texas Windstorm Insurance and of all people the Salvation Army. Today they are closing all shelters in Houston and the area. Tent cities have sprung up over night. We are cleaning out the garage and bringing over school clothes for the kids, school supplies, backpacks, pillows, blankets, coolers, etc. I just got back from Walmart where I bought blow up mattresses. So the van is packed and the girl scouts donated about a thousand dollars worth of toiletries they bought yesterday. My daughter is the leader and they had $1600 left in their cookie money which they were going to use for a trip to San Antonio but they decided to donate all of it. All day yesterday this looked like a crack house with all the cars pulling up with donations. The Salvation Army has been helping with shelters and the American Red Cross has done next to nothing. I did get a new bucket and mop from them. They were handing them out for cleanup. The bucket is great and I will use it for years to come. The mop handle broke already. Insurance is a real scam. FEMA won't help anyone until they settle with their insurance company. They did put a tarp on our houses and that was the end of that!
Insurance companies are offering inadequate payments for damages that people believed were covered since they were listed on their policies. No federal law has yet held the insurance industry accountable for how it mistreated Americans in the aftermath of any disaster. In fact, federal law is actually the problem. It has long given the insurance industry preferential treatment when compared to all other American industries. They have special exemption from federal antitrust laws and each state handles the insurance industries in their own state. So insurance is a monopoly with price fixing and the ability to block fair dispute and resolution claims. Of course this means fantastic profits in the insurance industry.
So if you are going to fight you have to go to civil court. Insurance has several tools at their disposal to continue to defraud their customers and they will delay everything and the consumer will end up losing in court and paying off the fees for court and in interest generally equates to more than the value of their property. My fried Sue was over yesterday afternoon and she just cried most of the time. She lost her health food store and home from IKE. She had 5 feet of water in both and both were totaled. The value of her property was half a million. Not a lot but it was pretty much a small store. She was ashamed as she borrowed money. She is house rich but now has no house and is poor. No job and no place to live. No FEMA and insurance will not return her calls. We have a neighbor who took her and her son in. He is in college…. We need to get this country straightened out and not pass this greed onto our children and grandchildren.
Ike Spirit Then I went outside and grabbed the paper out of the driveway. Remember all those months when we were not allowed to say war about Iraq and instead say insurgency. Well now we are to say recession instead of depression. Actually we are not in a depression yet but that also is most likely on the horizon. So in this morning's paper on the front page was an article about depression. Like trying to show how far away a real depression is. Then I turned the page and a weekly columnist wrote about his parents and how they lived through the depression. The Houston Chronicle is breaking the rule and starting to wrote about DEPRESSION.
I bought olive oil yesterday and I think it has doubled in price. It was always expensive but WOW! Then I bought another 20 pounds of rice and vacuum packaged it. Bananas went up to 50 cents a pound so I skipped those. I will wait until they are in bad shape and get them for 10 cents a pound. That is what I did last week. I bought 3 more bags of flour and vacuum packed that also. Did the same with corn starch and sugar I don't need to vacuum package that since it will last for 30 years even if it is out and exposed.
OK here is another article from a friend on Survival Blog:
Damage It is not too late to prepare for the hard times that are coming. But time is short, so I am going to be brutally blunt. Prices are going up. If you don't already expect double digit inflation, you haven't been paying attention. If you are just realizing that you need to prepare for the future, forget buying barter goods. Forget precious metals to swap for what others may be willing to sell.
The idea of buying things so that you can swap them for other goods or services later is bad policy. That's right. I'm advocating that you buy no precious metals and no barter goods. Instead- you need to prioritize purchases of things that you need right now. Sitting on a pile of sewing needles, can openers, or thousands of dollars of face value in gold or silver is not going to stop you from starving to death, freezing to death, or dying gasping in your own fluids.
This is not a slam on previous writers excellent advice to invest in tangibles. It is not even a criticism of his recent post on barter items to acquire, or advice to invest in precious metals. This article is a reminder that all those things are good advice only after you have squared away your personal needs. Only after you have duplicate sources of potable water, shelter, a substantial food supply, a deep medicine chest, and ample supplies of sturdy clothing and footwear should you invest in barter goods or precious metals.
Here are your priorities:
You need breathable air to live. Most of us expect that to be available for free. Your next priority for sustaining life is shelter from extreme elements (your home and a way to heat it during winter), then potable water. Let me make this explicitly clear. Unless you have clean water to drink, you will die in a matter of days. It is not the government's job to make sure that you stay alive. It is your responsibility to care for yourself and your dependants. You are responsible to ensure that you have access to clean drinking water or a method to filter, boil, or collect it. If you have no method to do so, go get one. At the very least, plan on a way to boil water over an outside fire or solar oven.
After air, shelter, and water - you need food. Come what may, you and those who you love will need to eat. Buy food. The cheapest food that you can get will keep you alive, but my advice is to buy extra of what you already eat. Oatmeal, grits, rice, pasta and potatoes are all relatively affordable and life sustaining. Potatoes will store for months. The others will store for years if properly packaged. Yes these alone would make a very bland diet. Use them to stretch your regular grocery meals while the other supplies last.
What next? Get over-the-counter medicines. Diarrhea will kill you. The stomach flu will kill you. Pneumonia will kill you. Allergic reactions will kill you. There may not be any 911 to send help. There may not be an emergency room to flee to as a last resort. There may not be a pharmacy with inventory to sell at 3 a.m.. Buy vital medicines now. Look in your medicine cabinet. If you do not have the medicines to treat an allergic reaction, stomach flu, and a chest cold; go buy them today. $10 spent on medicine could save your child's life. It won't if you can't give it to them. Go buy it before you go to sleep tonight.
Photo: My neighbor made his bird house into a FEMA birdhouse. That is how all our roofs look with the exception of that one house that is almost totally covered.
If you can avoid getting sick that's even better than treating illness. Hygiene is critical to health. Buy toilet paper and tissues. You will need them, why don't you already have them?
You should have sturdy warm clothes and footwear for each member of your family.
And yes, you should also have a means of defense and forage. A simple shotgun and shells for it will let you defend your doorway and harvest birds and bunnies if need be. If you are contemplating buying your first firearm then I strongly recommend that you take an NRA-sponsored firearms safety course as soon as possible. Firearms are a vital tool, but whether you ever need to defend your home, you will need to drink, sleep in a dry place, eat, and stay healthy. God has given you the resources and wisdom to prepare, the rest is up to you. Now pray for wisdom and go take action. - From Mr. Yankee.
So there you go…By the way I bought what I thought was 3 boxes of paper matches yesterday only to find out there were 6 boxes. I have 6000 matches in plastic bags and now I need to get more clothespins. They break easily…
So my advice is quit reading the paper, looking at the TV news and the internet news. It will get you confused and instead start looking at how to take care of you and your loved ones.
Pictures: The bird just stood there and let me get off about 10 shots before he flew off. I was like 10 feet away from him. Have a great day everyone...