Episode-1471- Listener Feedback for 11-24-14 — 18 Comments

  1. “Most people prefer to believe their leaders are just and fair even in the face of evidence to the contrary, because most people don’t want to admit they don’t have the courage to do anything about it.

    Most propaganda is not designed to fool the critical thinker but only to give moral cowards an excuse not to think at all.”
    – Michael Rivero

    “Most men do not desire liberty; most only wish for a master that doesn’t beat them.”
    – Sallust (86-34BC)

    “As the state grows, one’s sense of self-ownership is destroyed, liberty is traded for “security,” the human spirit diminishes, and the citizenry increasingly thinks and behaves like dependent children.”
    – Eric Englund

  2. Prepper scenario: First, I for many reasons live well outside a city in a rural area, so I won’t have quite the same problems with massive snow like they have in Buffalo. But, I did live in Boston during college days and I can tell you what happens there (and it isn’t pretty). The streets are narrow so sooner or later there’s no place to put the snow. They plow it onto the parallel parked cars and onto the sidewalks, then fine you for not shoveling your sidewalk and ticket cars whose meter is no longer visible. And, you have to walk in the slushy streets to get around the mess. Eventually, they start hauling away snow one bucket load at a time, putting it into dump trucks, then dumping it in a field out in the suburbs. (They used to dump it into the ocean until someone thought it was an environmental hazard — I’m not joking).

    But, back to the scenario and how I would prepare. It is pretty much what I do now (I live in NH so I’m good at this prep). I have a big-ass shiny new snow blower which I keep properly prepared and tested in advance of a storm. I still have my older smaller backup snow blower, which I actually still do use to drive it up ramps onto the decks to clear them quicker. I don’t just clear the bare minimum of driveway and steps then call it done; I go around the entire house close to it, making a moat 10-15 feet wide around house, so that snow piling up along the sides doesn’t get so high it seeps in through siding or through basement, or blocks the direct vents. It sucks, but I also use a roof rake to remove what’s over part of the roof that this is a problem (the mudroom). Snow drifts form there and will eventually leak plus its a lot of weight to support. I have the pellet stove and generator to deal with snow-caused power outages. The truck is 4×4 so I can get out if the roads are plowed. The house is intentionally not anywhere near anything that can possibly flood; I made sure of that when I bought it. Seepage from wet ground around me is about all I am concerned with and it hasn’t been a problem other than some water running under the garage door sometimes. There’s the usual preps in case we’re trapped for a while as the streets get cleared. There’s even mobile broadband on my tablet in case the Internet’s down. And, there’s a chain saw in case I have to deal with fallen branches or trees (plus two bow saws as backup).

  3. Yes, it’s true about the Chinese educational system and our mimicking it. I spent three years teaching in China 2005-08). Most of my students were career people with at least 14 years of English, and the stories were all the same: they were funneled through testing into science and technology for the sake of the developing world competitor. Almost to the person they didn’t like their jobs, but didn’t know how they could do anything else. I took it upon myself to explain how skills transfer, and how entrepreneurship works. There are thousands of success stories of individuals who became known worldwide for examples, they just don’t know how to risk leaving one thing to go to another. I also have a son who is still teaching in China after ten years, married a local girl, and has two children. They want to come to the States next year to put their children in “American schools”. I’ve tried to explain the changes, but they can’t comprehend how this system has become that one. My grandchildren who are High school students here are being ‘funneled’ into what they call “paths” through testing just like China.

  4. Hi Jack,

    Did I miss the winners of the PV2 essay contest? I thought it was going to be announced today.

  5. Prepper scenario: I’ve always lived in a snowbelt state, so heavy snowfalls are just a fact of life. Having said that, 8 feet of snow in one storm, assuming this is actual precipitation and not just drifts, is a tremendous amount of snow. Going Galt had an excellent post on the equipment needed. I would just add a couple of points. I don’t like to wait until the snow is ridiculously deep before I break out a shovel (dear husband mans the snowblower.) Every 3-4″ I will make sure at least a few key spots are shoveled: front of the garage doors, path for the dogs to go out, woodshed, etc. DH lets it get deeper before the snowblower–which he maintains meticulously–is fired up. I have 2 days of wood for the fireplace right outside the door, with about a cord only 50 feet away. An actual woodstove for supplemental heating is in the plans. I have never lost natural gas for heating and we have a generator to keep the furnace running, but there is always a first time. We have plenty of food/water/toilet paper and being stuck at home for a week is not a serious employment issue. When we lived further north, it was not uncommon for people to use smowmobiles to get to work. Keeping the roof shoveled would be important–our rake reaches fairly high, but to clear to the peak would require a ladder.

    John Galt, you mentioned the narrow streets in Boston. I lived in Hibbing, MN for several years. The streets were ridiculously wide, but they plowed to the center of the road. When the snow got too deep, they had a huge vacuum truck that sucked it up, blew it into a dump truck which then hauled it out of town. I heard they dumped it out near the mine puts, but I am not sure.

  6. The reason our educational system hasn’t evolved is mostly because the majority of the population has not taken responsibility for the education of their own children. In a lot of situations the parents have given the state this responsibility so they can go back to work and being a cog in the wheel of society. Unless parents are willing to say to the state edu systems “to hell with you”, were screwed…..

  7. There are the obvious preps that are needed to deal with this scenario (wood stove and firewood, for example). But, I think that the best prep for this scenario is to utilize social capital. The social capital? The locals. Cultivate relationships with the locals while it’s warm and they will tell you everything you need to do to endure this winter scenario. I live in KY. I have no idea what it’s like to live in a place that gets this kind of snow. Talk to the locals. Ask the same questions to different people. See if their answers line up along the same way. Sure beats making major miscalculations.

  8. Yikes! I forgot about my water pipes. The plan is to keep the house warm enough, but worse case scenario, we may have to drain the pipes,

  9. Prepper scenario: Wait, I live in the Buffalo region and this happened to me. Let me point out a few things we wish we had. First a better shovel, we broke one just from the weight of the show, yes it was that wet and heavy. Second more belts and spare parts for the tractor. We broke two belts and one spring just trying to throw the snow that was very very heavy. Thats what made the snow such a problem, lake effect snow, is very heavy and wet. Its not the light power you would think of. Other than that we were well stocked. We had plenty of food. We were lacking in the beer department. Knowing family and friends that had snowmobiles too helped.

    The worst part of the storm was the money issue. My wife and myself were stuck home for a week. That means little to no income. So we are still recovering from that hickup. The biggest prep we could / should have for the next go around would be a few more dollars saved up.

  10. Hi jack.Soil amendment response: starbucks actually has a formal program where they encourage people to ask for the coffee grounds. I saw a flyer for it on the wall. As far as the milk goes is it ok to be pasteurized? For what size area were you talking about when you proposed the recipe for super! soil? you said 2-3 gallons of milk. was that the 1/10th or the 1/20th acre? or…..what? guild the lily? what does that mean?
    I gotta tell you. I listen to your show daily. Thank goodness for Paul wheaton, the guy who introduced your show to me. I love paul wheaton as well, but I get way more out of your show. I love it, i am a permaethos founding member and I am really excited about being a part of your empire for decades to come. I was inspired to visit empire avenue recently from what you said on your show, and I signed up, but I don’t really understand it. quick dumbed down explanation, if possible. Thanks!

  11. I think that a focus on good handwriting is just fine because it is obviously a form of communication and the better you can communicate ( with neater handwriting) the better off you are. I also struggle with your assessment of the educational system doing a disservice to children because they teach them things that they don’t need to know, don’t want to know. I do see how a self directed education can be beneficial to children, but the education can’t be completely self directed, can it? Take Geometry, for example. I had a horrible time with geometry, but if there was a job that existed that I really really wanted and it included knowing basic geometry, well at least I would have some kind of basis to start off with which therefore dictates, in at least some way, my attitude towards the project, problem job prospect etc. Hopefully, if you take geometry 101 in high school, that gives you a foundation from which you can jump off of for future endeavors. Anyway, I hope I explained myself clearly enough.