Episode-1333- Listener Feedback for 4-14-14 — 70 Comments

  1. Conflicted Monday
    Three skills kids need in our current society.
    1. True critical thinking
    2. Reading
    3. Basic mathematics
    Three other skills in post apocalyptic world.
    1. Knife and firearm basics
    2. First aid
    3. Fire starting & shelter building

    • Current Skills
      1. Budgeting/Personal Finance
      2. Critical Thinking
      3. Permaculture Design
      1. First aid/EMT
      2. Canning/Food preservation
      3. Self Defense

      • My son is 5 this our plan of what we are working on now,
        1, “Common Sense” aka how to count money back, basic stuff.
        2, whole system thinking, Big picture
        3, Problem Solving

        1, wilderness survival Basics
        2, Basic gardening
        3, Simple Coms

        • Post-Collapse
          1) Reading
          2) History
          3) Homesteading (my 9yr old works right alongside me in the garden and with the chickens)

        • Today:
          1. Critical thinking – Understand the question
          2. Research basics – how to research an answer and evaluate the veracity of answers to avoid common fallacies and filter response bias.
          3. basic accounting
          1. Self defense
          2. Permaculture
          3. Teambuilding

    • I just listened to the episode. These are mine:
      1) Situational awareness
      2) Proper nutrition and exercise habits
      3) Basic reading, writing, mathematics and problem solving skills.

      1) Running.
      2) Basic self defense including hand to hand, fire-arms and knives
      3) First aid

  2. Would a family be considered as one of the Tenent positions? I work full time from home for ATT, so my job is totally mobile. I would be able to work before and after ‘business hours’, but I also have a son (13) and a daughter (16) along with my wife who would be pitching in as well. I have a PDC from Geoff Lawton’s online course last year. Just wondering if it’s worth it to put in an application.

    Chris Dickson
    Imperial, MO

    • It depends and likely based on your description the answer would be no, all you can do though is apply.

      Here is why I say no, the tenant position isn’t a part time job, it is more like a full time job and a half. If you said, my wife works in a remote manner, she could keep her job and I take this job, I would say, well perhaps. But no there is no way anyone can do this type of job part time, absolutely impossible.

      Next on kids, now we have another issue, housing. Jesse has kids but he is bringing an RV and in effect providing his own housing. I would say for this to work a family would have to live in an RV or have an additional source of income and live in town or something like that especially at this time.

      Down the road or on a different farm I may have a different answer. But what won’t change is the requirements of a tenant farmer. Again this is a full time job. In one year or less such tenants should have a revenue stream going that exceeds their stipend and be off of it, they should be building up the skills and knowledge to run a farm of their own within 1-2 years. Either taking over for the farm steward who wants to move to another farm or going to a new farm to start it up.

      Someone like yourself would be welcome to Wwopf or to become an element partner if they can show how that happens. Think of it this way, the head farm steward is like a Major, the two tenants are his Captains. Being a captain isn’t a part time job.

      • Disappointing, but that was actually what I was thinking too! But if you never ask you never know 😀 Thanks for your time! Unfortunately I can’t Wwopf because obviously I have obligations. I will definitely follow the progress of Permaethos going forward as I desperately believe this kind of model is how we solve most of the worlds crisis problems. I will hopefully be able to utilize the lessons you are learning to implement something in the future. In the mean time I will continue to apply permaculture to my current situation!

        Thanks again!

  3. On the subject of a constitutional convention, I see little risk of damage caused by a convention, because you need 3/4 of state legislatures approving a proposed constitutional amendment before it becomes law. The convention can propose lots of amendments, without harming the U.S. I see more good coming out of a convention than bad.

  4. #conflictedMondays

    Current Society:
    1. finding and sharing information (asking people, searching online, vetting sources, writing, speaking, online publishing, etc )
    2. finding and understanding value (8 forms of capital)
    3. thinking for themselves (asking their own questions, picking their own goals, etc)

    After Collapse:
    1. finding water sources and making them safe to drink
    2. the importance of community
    3. how to avoid/de-escalate conflicts

    • I personally don’t think Americans have “slept at the wheel while people took over their government”.

      I think “we” have the government “we” want. And how has that worked out? Sometimes good, sometimes not so much.

      • I’d say that a minority of people and the majority of corporations have saddled the rest of us with the government that they want, because most of us are too busy with life to fight every freaking, pesky law that passes.

        • That is a great way to pass the buck! You can’t control 300 million people without their consent.

      • Sure, you can control 300million people Jack.

        All you do is seperate them into 2 groups and tell each group that the other is bad.

        • @BarnGeek what I said was, you can’t control 300 million people WITHOUT THEIR CONSENT, you just pointed out one of the ways that consent is obtained.

      • Yes, of course you are right Jack, I appologize.

        However there is a way to control people without their consent.

        Lie to them.

        It is how the Nazi’s were able to load 11 million Jews into trains, they told them they were taking them to a place where they would be safe away from the war zone. They told fathers and mothers that their children would be safe.

        Of course we all know how that played out.

        Do you think if they had been told the truth that they would have willingly gotten on those trains?

        You cannot discount the power of deception. Those who can use deception to control others will use it every time.

        It is the same with social security, and countless other programs that we can see with the benefit of hindsight were a very bad idea.

        Do you think our grandparents would have let it fly if they had known that it would bankrupt the country for their grandchildren?

        • I take it you saw the series Band of Brothers? Remember near the end, when the camp was liberated. Remember what the US Commander did and said? He forced the towns people to clean up the camp, haul off the dead and care for the weak and the sick. He also said they knew, all of them knew.

          Lies that are as obvious as the current lies only work when people want to believe them.

          As to those that “got on the trains” almost none did so with consent, they did so under the threat of violence at the point of a gun. We all want to blame Hitler and a few at the top. Sad but true, the people of Europe allowed it to happen, yes they gave their consent. When the harsh reality hit, many changed their minds, when the fact that it wasn’t just Jews hit, many really changed their minds but then it was too late.

          Don’t give the people of Germany and much of surrounding Europe a pass on it though, as the commander said in the series, They Knew.

          As Dwight Eisenhower also said, “film every damn bit of it because some day some son of a bitch will say it never happened”.

      • @Jack, Have you read the book called “How do you kill 11 million people” by Andy Andrews?

        It is a 20 minute read and well worth the time.

        There is a part in the book where the trains went by a church, and the parishioners new what the sound of that train meant, all they did was sing louder to try to drown out the train. When I read that I felt ill.

        So yes, those who know are guilty as hell, and I mean hell literally. However the victims are not, and the distinction must be made, otherwise nobody can be truly free.

        BTW I finished Illusions, it was a fun read and interesting, I’ll have more to say on it later.

    • Jack’s analysis is something I had not considered. Why, indeed, would politicians vote to have less power and control?

      The other thing I worry about in a Article V convention is a weakening between the state and religion. The majority could decide to allow dangerous intermingling.

      • The vast majority do consent. Your assertion is the majority of people are actually opposed the the current system, my assertion is that is a self delusion. You said a small minority have created the current mess, I have said the vast majority didn’t just create the mess they are actively defending it. People say they are for smaller government, right up until you want to actually cut something, then well not that, not that, well may be that, but oh God no not military spending, we have to outspend the next 10 nations combined or Achmed the dead terrorist will sodomize our children!

        Go to any major city, stop random people on the street and in 4 hours find me 100 people actually willing to cut the size and scope of government by even 20%. Do it, I dare you.

        I don’t mean some stupid non pointed question like, “do you think government spending should be cut by 20%”, I mean here is what 20% looks like, this is what it takes, would you support it?

        You’d be lucky to find 10!

      • My assertion was the majority of people are too busy to fight off every pesky law that affects their liberty, while the vast majority of corporations have a vested interest in lobbying for their own laws And that also a minority of people, such as those with agendas, i.e. gays, anti-gunners, etc…, mobilize a lot of people.

        Your experiment of asking random people to reduce government may work, I don’t doubt it, but that’s hardly point. But I don’t see much relevance to my statement. Most like, you and I, don’t like the current administration, perhaps for different reasons, yet we got stuck with it.

        • I agree and disagree with various parts of both of your arguments. At least the way I look at it, people have their particular niche things that they support and don’t support, so when a politician is “for those things” (whatever that means, because obviously that doesn’t mean they do those things you want) the person is more or less content with them, regardless of all the other things they do. See just about all presidents in the 20th century.

          I think in general you can look at our government as the manifestation of the cognitive dissonance of the whole of “our” society. “I’m pro life! So long as its a baby, but not a man/woman/child overseas”. “I’m pro first amendment, but only my first amendment right!” “I’m against all those freeloaders, but we can’t stop the subsidies to farmers…”

          I’d also say this is what forced “getting along” looks like. I think when there is money greasing the wheels of this society the divergences of opinion really don’t matter as much, but as the country has further and further been squeezed, those differences are popping out all over the place. The individual states aren’t nearly as unified as some people think (think Austin mega liberal, while texas is… well texas). People live where there is money, unless you’re “stuck” doing something that takes years/generations of work…. (rural). Or you’re too poor (ignant) to get out.

          I think trade and economy fixes just about all wounds.

  5. Conflicted:
    1. Self-confidence (not the fake everyone is a winner, knowing that you can accomplish anything you put your mind to, having them accomplish tasks that are difficult and have them feel good about completing them or failing and analyzing why they failed and try again)
    2. Empathy (ability to understand where others are coming from)
    3. Logical Thinking (ability to clearly think through problems and gather facts to come up with solutions)

    Post collapse (yeah I’d teach these today too)
    1. Negotiation
    2. Hard Working
    3. Tenants of survival (water, energy, food, shelter, safety)

  6. Jack I wish you were right when you say that school system in America will collapse of it’s on ineptitude. But the reality is that it will continue much as is.
    Just as the states don’t want to take on the burden of Land management they are gleeful that the Fed is taking on more education control. They can pass the blame for the failure to the feds. Then turn and demand that the Feds make it illegal to instruct kids in any other method than the public junior prisons. This can of worms will be kicked down the road for the next 20 years. 2 more generations of mindless sponges on society. The failure of the economy, as in total collapse, is the only real hope for the education system.

    • If I had a dollar for every time a person said I wish you were right, then I turned out to be right and then the person changed to wow I wish you had been wrong, I’d have a big old bunch of dollars.

    • I’m not sure. I just heard that Google has stopped hiring from major universities as they’ve found those hires to be long term failures due to lack of originality. I think people will continue to send their kids to public school, but then augment their education through other methods. People are sheep, but parents are different. People will more easily indure injectices inflicted on themselves then on their kids. As the percentage of kids coming out of college cannot earn enough to pay their loans, parents will start changing the course of their kids education. Rabid moms used to scheme to get their kids into the right prep schools. I think now they will start researching how to get their kids into the right start-up.

  7. KISS on the conflicted skills—-

    Current Society:

    1. How to read and understand things on paper, not online. This would be things like maps, basic blueprints and diagrams, and simple legal docs.

    2. How to cook from as much scratch as possible. Bread from scratch, basic baking, basic cooking. None of it in a microwave! Basically how to make a meal for themselves or/and their family without ordering take-out or buying it already prepared

    3. Basic home maintenance. Simple plumbing, electricity, and carpentry.


    1. Basic fishing or hunting skills

    2. Good, solid personal health practices

    3. Simple construction techniques

  8. Jack,

    I think the governments know about Permaculture, in particular function stacking. Allow me to explain.

    ISD taxes at the tune of $3000 yearly, money which could go to private tuition, serve a dual purpose: 1) build the public system and 2) eliminate competition. The old chop and drop, disadvantage the competition method.

    School hours, 7:30 to 3:00, and after hours programs serve several functions: 1) School and Daycare, 2) Promote two working parent households so they can pay ore taxes, 3) Discourage home schooling, 4) Facilitate indoctrination.

    And the best for last. Common Core.

    CC takes the objectivity out of education and turns it into an everyone wins, no one is wrong Kumbaya feel good fest. Most parents care about 1 thing, report cards. Education is a distant second, and the type of education, a forgone conclusion. With Common Core, little Johnny or Suzy can’t bring bad grades home anymore because everyone is a winner, and Mon and Dad get to drive with an honor roll student bumper sticker. See, everyone is happy and the system is in harmony. Every element serves multiple functions and every function serves multiple elements. Free, independent thinkers are the weed that this public system tries to eradicate.

  9. Jack, an update on the tarantula. I checked today, and it was still in the pit, along with a toad. I don’t know if that is a sign of the apocalypse, but it was cool to see. We have a cold front blowing in, so when I took the top off, the toad crawled under one end of the pipe, and the tarantula the other.

  10. I am confident a constitutional convention would probably result in less liberty not more.

    The reason being that we have a two party system where both parties most pressing concern is abusing power in order to score points against the other party.

    That all either party cares about dominanting the other.

    Look how Presidential power has expanded over the years.

    A Democrat wins a presidential election and does everything in his power expand the power of his office.

    Republicans complain the Democrat President is illegally abusing his office and say “We need to limit the unconstitutional expansion of Presidental power.”

    All well and good right?

    Well what happens when a Republican becomes President?

    Well what usually happens is the Republicans look around and go hmmm.. “We control the Presidency but we don’t control enough of the Congress to get the stuff we want rubber stamped so we will work around the Congress and unconstitutionally expand the the power of the branch of government we do control the Presidency so we can get one over on the Democrats.”

    So the Democrats cry and complain that Presidental power has run amok until a Democrat is elected….

    What gonna happen at a constitutional convention is that either party is gonna look for ways to screw the other party over in any way possible.

    In the end the people will lose because the only way either party can really win politically is if they can expand the power of the offices they control over the offices their opponents control.

    The constant expansion of government in a endless game of political one upmanship results in less liberty not more.

    • Did you know that no amendment has ever resulted from state called constitutional convention? Every amendment was proposed by congress and sent to the states for ratification.

  11. The Mount Vernon Assembly is a movement among state legislatures to develop rules for a possible future constitutional amendment convention. This would make it possible to have a convention limited to the topic for which it will have been called without the danger of a “runaway” convention. They met at Mount Vernon last December and are meeting this spring in Indiana. There is a big difference between a constitutional convention and a constitutional AMENDMENT convention.

  12. Combining thoughts about constitutional convention and limiting laws, I would like to see a Constitutional Amendment placing a sunset of 10 years on every law or regulation passed. A provision for a 20 year sunset could be added by a super majority of both houses of Congress of 75%. No grandfather clause, every federal law or regulation passed by a federal agency currently on the books goes away in 10 years, unless passed again, and each law has to be reissued by an individual vote, no bullcrap omnibus “passing everything that’s already there.” This would only apply to the federal government, since the states could choose how they want to do their own business. Just what I would like to see.

  13. What Jack is on about with the whole universal exceptionalism thing is really Multiple Intelligences theory; this is the idea that everyone is smart, but people are smart if different ways with different intelligence profiles. Just thought I’d throw that out. It’s interesting that the factory schooling model really only values linguistic and logical-mathematical intelligences and devalues the others.

    • Precisely Robert!

      I’ll add that many people have the ability to be considered smart, as in learn shit, give the right answers and do “well” if they try but are too smart to look smart. In other words if something bores the shit out of them and you can’t explain to them why they should care, they don’t and they won’t. Telling such people because you will get an A and a pat on the head and gold star doesn’t work, they don’t care because they know it really doesn’t matter.

      They know what they know how to do, is what will ultimately matter.

      • Another resource people might find enlightening re: positive and negative rewards in education and learning, at least to consider and perhaps integrate some of the overarching concepts into daily interactions with kids (and adults, for that matter) is any book or interview with Alfie Kohn. For many years, he has been advocating against a system or any relationship built on the basis of consequences, either positive or negative. Instead, he talks about unconditional relationships and building of caring communities.

        He has a new book coming out that I haven’t read, but three others I have read that have influenced how I think about my interactions with people and how I aim to inspire intrinsic motivation include:

        1. Unconditional Parenting: Moving from Rewards and Punishments to Love and Reason by Alfie Kohn
        2. Punished by Rewards: The Trouble with Gold Stars, Incentive Plans, A’s, Praise, and Other Bribes by Alfie Kohn
        3. Beyond Discipline: From Compliance to Community by Alfie Kohn

  14. I to had social security steal $870 from my tax return this year. They stated it was money that was overpaid to my mother after my father passed 20 years ago. When I asked for records I was told that there were none. My only recourse is to came a hardship and file a pile of paperwork. If anyone knows of any other recourse I would love to know.

    • Contact your Congressman’s office. I read a story where this policy has been reversed.

    • Prepper Jim is right. Also, contact both senators, asking all three to work together for you. Then contact your local news media, especially if you have a regular consumer protection feature. Others who have had this same problem may be encouraged to step forward.

    • You can go into the local IRS office and have them fill out the paperwork with you. That’s their job.

  15. There is also a sight level app that only costs a few bucks. It’s pretty cool. If you have a little tripod that can hold your phone and get it level with the on screen “bubbles”, it uses your camera and draws the level line across the picture.

  16. Great Show Jack! really one of your best.

    re: the education bit… I think you hit on something very powerful at the end. “what about the less than outstanding kids” What kind of question is that, we all have something special in us. I paraphrase here its no likely spot on but I think and use this quote a lot by Einstein (who by the way did rather poorly in school)
    “Everyone is a genious but if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will spend its life believing that it is stupid.”

  17. Conflicted Scenario
    Essential Life Skills for Now(Conceptual Skills for a more well rounded human):
    1. How to Learn New Things-I think its imperative for children to understand how to learn and gain a zest for learning their own way. There is a plethora of information available everywhere and it is important for our children be free to access and take advantage of it. Regurgitation of “facts” onto a standardized test paper is not learning.
    2. Confidence – It is important for our children to learn how to fail and how to deal with/learn from failure. Rewarding participation, glorifying dependency, and preventing little Johnny from jumping over the 3′ drainage ditch in lieu of a $100k foot bridge is a recipe for creating future adults who always look to others(aka the State) to take care of them.
    3. Critical Thinking – One thing the school system in the US is great at is destroying our children’s ability to think for themselves, and creating drones that “fall in line”. Our children need the ability to analyze and evaluate all available data and come to a reasonable conclusion, and if required, apply that conclusion to a problem. Combined with the first two skills I mentioned this skill will result in citizens who think beyond the status quo, learn new concepts to apply to existing problems, and have the confidence to enact their own solutions, and if those solutions fail, learn “one more way not to make a light bulb.”

    Essential Life Skills for TEOTWAWKI(Applicable Skills for when SHTF)
    1. Negotiation: How to reach a win-win agreement between two parties. This includes the ability extract a person’s true goal through discussion.
    2. Permaculture Design: Not only provides the ability and knowledge to provide for nutritional needs, but provides a design science to apply to many concerns.
    3. Teaching: One of the most important skills for a person who has the 5 above would be how to, without a state issued curriculum, teach others. Real teaching is a near lost art these days, and the ability to teach others in different ways which not only transfers knowledge but creates a desire for additional knowledge would be a priceless skill in a post apocalypse scenario.

    You may wonder why I don’t have things like hunting, fishing, water harvesting, animal husbandry,etc. on my list. My contention is that with the above skillset, almost all other skills are attainable and transferrable to the community.

  18. One of the more interesting episodes Jack. I really like the sheep dog analogy. Maybe we could be TSP Sheep dogs?
    That could make a nice t shirt.

    Does anyone remember what book that comes from. Seems like it was a retired army officer. Writing about war…

    • That’s a term that Lt. Col Dave Grossman uses. Don’ t know if he coined it or just uses it.

  19. Conflicted Monday:

    Considering how previous peoples have lived, I reckon that making games would be the best approach to training from earliest ages teens. This challenge covers about eighteen years, so what is age appropriate would be best. We need not be in the dark ages to benefit from these skills. Practical, tactical and strategical.
    1. The arts of reasoning, observation and anticipation. How to stay cool in a stressful situation: Ex. STOP…. a. SIT DOWN, b. THINK about the situation, c. OPTIONS ~ Look at the options, d. PROCEED with action.
    2. Eye hand coordination and muscle building by stacking, tossing/throwing simple to complex objects. ie, balls, bean bags, rocks, sticks, knives, hatchets, spears, and firing weapons ( bow and arrow, and blow guns w/darts, and fire arms) at targets, both stationary and moving, while stationary or moving, along with lifting, dragging, wedges and rolling to move larger objects. This type of games/training can begin as soon as babies start to throw things. These skills serve hunting, defense and rebuilding.
    3. Playing Hide and Seek. the art of hiding and strategies for evasion. (we lived in s.korea back in the sixties with threats of invasion of the north, so I taught my young children to see who could be the quietest the longest. They thought it only a game. I thought it was a safety factor) This would be useful in combat, too. Think ‘guerrilla’/ controlled breathing.

    Easier and faster things/skills to learn that don’t take years of practice and are basic: ( My five year old grandson learned these in a day at a primitive skills gathering.)
    1. Friction fires, and fire safety
    2. Sheltering….from digging holes, and finding natural/ existing shelter, to constructing. Understanding what type of shelters are basic and effective for the climate .
    3,Cordage… even Boy Scouts recognize this as primary.

    If I could add a fourth, I’d add flint knapping to make sharp edges for tools and weapons.

    Consider there may be orphans. Any plans for them?

  20. use encryption. Jack talks about encryption and how NSA did not like that, and would be single out those using encryption. If anyone likes their emails read by 18 employees of NSA, then just use gmail and yahoo. I am using startpage and startmail. They are based in Netherland.

    • The better approach is to pay the cost for your own domain/email (such with godaddy) and use your own encryption.

      Them being in the Netherlands just means that the FBI can’t serve them a warrant for the information directly, but has nothing to do with “stopping the NSA”, in fact by being in Netherlands a lot of legal barriers just seem to fizzle away. This is probably the biggest misconception about where and how NSA does and doesn’t target.

    • All email is the electronic equivalent of post cards, open for complete observation for all handlers of the packets while in motion. There are several ways that you can encrypt the body of an email, but not the metadata (to and from addresses). The US government realizes this and that is why they set up Prism to literally listen in and record all data going in and out of bottleneck points like the connections of Google and similar companies to the Internet backbone. I like using Gmail because many people use it which means that if I email another gmail user, it is created over an encrypted SSL link and then is delivered over an encrypted SSL link. The only flaw in that system was the exposed tapping of Google’s internal communications which were unencrypted since they were on private fiber but since Snowden’s leaks were shown to be tapped by the NSA, so now Google encrypts all its data transfers even if they are internal. This is as good as you can do to cover metadata as it must be exposed to allow for email delivery. If you want to encrypt the body of the email then use OpenPGP or similar encryption. As close as I have seen to secure communications is from as it relies on physically exchanged keys, but again it only works if the encryption is all the way thru.

      • Thank you for that info. That was what I was wondering about encryption and whether they can sniff it out and use brute force attack.

        Richard, appreciate your info.

        • Yeah, that is the underlying truth of all encryption and that is you are only as secure as your passwords. So they have to be complicated, long and unique. What little I know of encryption I learned from Steve Gibson (GRC.COM) and he has a nice test to show how long if takes to break passwords and you can trust him. and as always to remember good passwords use or KeePass or Steve’s perfect paper passwords.

      • Yep. Pretty much.

        I don’t trust google though. I still have a Gmail and use it (but am working on moving off of that).

        The NSA definitely does a lot more than metadata analysis but that is definitely the “hot” thing for the last half decade. But again, as a US company the FBI can shoot over an email to google, or any other US company (the bigger the easier to get) and they get access to whatever it is they want (metadata, generally not content).

        That is one advantage to a non-US company. The corporatism links are pretty intense in the US. Outside the US you have to deal much more with the NSA since they don’t have the legal limitations like they do in the US.

        • It is tough to know who to trust. Everyone has bias’ and obligations, so the only good system is a TNO (Trust No One) system like Lastpass where they lack even the ability to divulge data. A lot of places encrypt in transit, or encrypt in transit and in storage, but hold the keys. Email is just too insecure by design to be secured. I’m learning programming because my great hope is that Whisper Systems has published TextSecure as a protocol for any kind of end to end communications so it could grow to cover almost any kind of secure communications.

  21. conflicted Monday.

    1. Responsible money management. Keeping a household budget, paying day to day bills and monthly bills. Never keeping a balance on those credit cards. saving money every month, Spending only the money you have and not on crap you don’t need.

    2. Cooking, shopping. Sewing. All those things I learned in jr high school. It was called home economics then. Also high school wood shop and metal shop.

    3. Business and work experience. Like helping with the family business or dog sitting, baby sitting, paper route. Helping neighbors with yard work. Cut grass, or anything age appropriate like that. Kids can do chores only for allowance. all of the above helps teach responsibility and a whole lot more.

    post collapse.
    First aid and maybe some more advanced first aid at least. Maybe some medicinal herbs and natural remedies

    Self defense. stick, knife and gun alike. martial arts and even dirty fighting.

    Gardening, food production. Canning, drying meats and fish. hunting and trapping and fishing. Anything to do with filling your belly and having food for tomorrow.

  22. Ok, first I have to say that I really enjoying this thread of conversation. I listened to the podcast yesterday and my mind has been whirling about the Conflicted question ever since. I’m thrilled to see so many people emphasizing care of people “soft” skills like critical thinking, problem-solving, self-confidence, empathy, nutrition/health. I would argue that whether we are living in the current situation or a collapse, these soft skills often enable people to then acquire any hard skill they are interested in and/or need… and, keep in mind, situational necessity can inspire interest.

    What do kids need to know to thrive in today’s world:
    1. Understanding, appreciation for, and joy in an understanding of self (who the child is as a person and learner, strengths/areas for improvement, how they can fit into the various levels of community in their life, where they are now, who they want to be, and a vision to make it happen) – I think without a grounding in and love for ourselves, people struggle to value, empathize, and care for others and they have a hard time integrating others into their life in any meaningful way.
    2. Lifelong learner skills (which includes foundational skills like communication in all forms, how to find and use credible information, how to analyze and synthesize what is known/previous knowledge with new information, how to continue learning – resilience – when there is a gap or a missing piece of in the puzzle, and the ability to reflect and adjust based on information/experiences/relationships)
    3. Making connections and seeing patterns (empowers people to not just get information and build relationships, but use and integrate it more effectively)

    FYI, a great read on this topic is Mind in the Making: The Seven Essential Life Skills Every Child Needs by Ellen Galinsky.

    Collapse (Although my answer for this would be a bit dependent on what type of collapse we encounter):
    1. Homesteading skills
    2. Basic survival skills
    3. Self-Protection skills (includes situational awareness, being able to defend oneself, take care of basic health/medical/hygiene needs, and methods of conflict resolution to include avoiding conflict altogether, de-escalation techniques and skillful negotiation)

    • You emphasize the soft skills. It has been my experience that if you teach the hard skills the soft skills come naturally. Teaching critical thinking and self confidence and problem solving have always been the product of entrepreneurs large and small. I’ve known many a over educated PHD that would stand around with all the other over educated PHD’s and discuss and argue on the social and economic relevance of just why the darn toilet wont flush. These college professor types are not much good in the real world. I would rather have a self made man or woman any day than someone who is superfluously confident but In reality does not poses the necessary knot tying skills to secure their own shoes. Soft skills are learned through hard work and hard skills. IMHO.

  23. Regarding Pre and Post collapse skills, I’m of the opinion that if it’s a skill deemed necessary for the post collapse, then it’s a skill that needs to be taught today. Some skills will be learned by necessity post shtf. For example, if a kid learns to field dress a deer, with some care he can field dress any 4 legged animal. Will that kid have the mental toughness to eat cat? That’s something he’ll have to learn or overcome in real time? Mental toughness is hard to teach in a society that has all the conveniences.

  24. Of course the government thinks children are responsible for very old debts of previous generations- thats how government debt works! They expect our grandkids to pay off their spending today. They’ll say ‘your grandfather got services 20 years ago, and we had to borrow to provide them, and you benefitted in some way so pay these taxes to pay off their debt’

  25. Just thought I’d post an update that Social Security has called for an immediate halt to the practice of holding kids responsible for their parents’ debt:

    ““I have directed an immediate halt to further referrals under the Treasury Offset Program to recover debts owed to the agency that are 10 years old and older pending a thorough review of our responsibility and discretion under the current law to refer debt to the Treasury Department…”

    Though I’m not so sure about the rest of the statement:

    “…If any Social Security or Supplemental Security Income beneficiary believes they have been incorrectly assessed with an overpayment under this program, I encourage them to request an explanation or seek options to resolve the overpayment.”

  26. “When you make people feel good about themselves for doing nothing extraordinary, eventually they figure it out and they just feel worthless.”
    Thank you Jack for this little nugget.