Category Archives: Independent American Party

Zack Strong: What Bernie Sanders Reveals About America

By Zack Strong, a member of the Independent American Party, April 27th, 2016:

The most incredible story of the 2016 election cycle is not the unexpected success of Donald Trump, but the highly telling achievements of socialist Bernie Sanders. Never before in American history has an open, admitted, avowed socialist done so well in an election bid. Numerous socialists have both run for office and have been elected, but they have always hidden their true colors behind a mask. Hillary Clinton, for instance, is a socialist who calls herself a progressive. Her socialist husband called himself a liberal. The Bushes pretended they were conservatives, but advanced the same philosophy and agenda as the others. Whether you want to term it socialism, progressivism, liberalism, globalism, collectivism, statism, or the most socially stigmatic label of them all, communism, the fact is that collectivist tyranny has never been more popular in the United States than it is today, as evidenced by Bernie Sanders.

Let’s make no bones about it, an increasing number of Americans are enamored with the seductive appeal of socialism. Any number of polls could be cited to prove this. The fact that Bernie Sanders has won, at my last count, 16 state primaries, and came out in a statistical tie with Clinton in Missouri, making number seventeen, tells me everything I need to know. It is safe to say that there are more socialists in this country than ever before, whether they consider themselves socialists or not. That a person can openly call himself a socialist and promote socialist principles and win 17 states in America, is astounding. As I said above, other politicians are closet socialists, but they hide behind enlightened-sounding labels in order to dupe voters. But Bernie Sanders is a singular phenomenon. He outright says he is a socialist and still wins elections and garners mass appeal.

The fact that Bernie Sanders is a hair away from winning the Democratic nomination for the presidency is another amazing feat. If Sanders somehow manages to overcome the blatant vote rigging in favor of Hillary Clinton, he would become the Democratic presidential nominee. As such, he would, by default, receive the votes of half of America in the November election. Ponder in your mind what that says about this nation.

No state or region in the Union is immune from the fatal allure of socialism. Utah is, in my estimation, the undisputed leader in conservatism among the states (though I will note that no single state truly follows the principles set forth by our Founding Fathers and the Constitution). Yet, even in Utah, socialism has taken root. This is evident in the erosion of morals and politics, the upswing in social justice activism in Salt Lake City and the larger metropolitan areas, and the appalling socialist curriculum in Utah’s universities. This is particularly interesting to me given the fact that most Utahns are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. No organization of which I am aware has spoken more forcefully against socialism, communism, forced collectivism, and the welfare state than the LDS Church. If socialism can grow in a religious and conservative state like Utah, it can spring up anywhere. And it is growing like a weed.

Ezra Taft Benson, the former Secretary of Agriculture under President Eisenhower, a prolific author, and thirteenth President of the LDS Church, spoke often on socialism/communism. He emphatically stated: “No true Latter-day Saint and no true American can be a socialist or a communist or support programs leading in that direction” (Ezra Taft Benson, “The American Heritage of Freedom – A Plan of God,” General Conference, October, 1961).

In his fantastic book “The Red Carpet: Socialism – the Royal Road to Communism,” Benson wrote:

“I say to Americans and to people everywhere; no true Christian, no true believer in Christ, can be a communist. These dangerous philosophies of communism are anti-Christ and are wholly incompatible with our God-given freedom and the true gospel of Jesus Christ.

“It is not alone hunger and poverty and oppression that afflict so many in this sweeping program of man’s inhumanity to man. In country after country faith in God has been ruthlessly destroyed” (p. 35).

In the same book, he penned:

“It is high time we realized the dangerous threat to America of creeping socialism as the ruthless comrade to atheistic communism.

“It is high time we recognize creeping socialism for what it really is – a Red Carpet providing a royal road to communism. . . .

“While we might effectively bridle or destroy every so-called communist within our borders, we shall not vanquish this political virus, and its common forerunner, state socialism, so long as people are determined to achieve security through state-imposed materialistic schemes rather than through righteous living and wholesome activity as free men.

“When socialism is understood, we will realize that many programs advocated, and some of those already adopted in the United States fall clearly within the category of socialism. What is Socialism? It is simply governmental ownership and management of the essential means for production and distribution of goods.

“We know that socialism is not progressive, but reactionary. Socialism harks back to the days of the tyranny of kings – the autocracy of the few. . . .”(p. 65-66).

Benson then quoted an interesting statement made by Soviet Dictator Nikita Khrushchev on using legal means to bring about victory for socialism:

“In this connection the question arises whether it is possible to go over to socialism using parliamentary means. . . . The forces of socialism and democracy have grown immeasurably throughout the world, and capitalism has become much weaker. . . . In these circumstances the working class, by rallying around itself the toiling peasantry, the intelligentsia, all patriotic forces . . . is in a position to defeat the reactionary forces opposed to the popular interest, to capture a stable majority in parliament, and transform the latter from an organ of bourgeois democracy into a genuine instrument of the people’s will” (p. 68).

bernie-sandersIt is interesting to note that Khrushchev wanted to use the democratic process to usher in socialism in the West. Indeed, democracy and socialism are allies. Democracy is an evil, ineffective, anti-Liberty system where the whims of the majority overrule the rights of the minority. Rule of law and democracy are incompatible the same as rule of law and socialism are in opposition. The Soviet Union was in fact the most vocal supporter of democracy of which I have knowledge.

You often hear people claim that Bernie Sanders is not a socialist in the traditional sense, but is a Democratic Socialist. It might interest folks to know that Democratic Socialism has been a tool of the communists since their inception. By slapping the word “democratic” onto the front, communists attempt to cloak themselves and, bizarrely, succeed in lulling people to sleep. This is what Sanders has done. He acts like he is for the downtrodden – for the People. Yet, he is an elitist who has never worked in his life and wants to feast off the working classes of Americans by stealing their property through higher taxes. The freebies that come from these taxes will be offered to voters as bribes. Through this method, elitists keep themselves in power and pacify the People so they don’t revolt and take back their power from the tyrants who have usurped it.

Many religious people have been hoodwinked by Sanders because they believe his philosophy most closely resembles the compassionate doctrines of Jesus Christ. In reality, Sanders’ dogma is the furthest from Christ’s teachings and actually opposes it. It pretends to care for the poor and needy, while keeping them in subjection to government. How do socialists “care” for the poor? By forcibly taking from one person (the supposed “rich” that Sanders hates so badly) and giving to another. This destroys Freedom because it negates the all-important right to own and manage one’s own property as one sees fit. It destroys the right to choose. It destroys true charity and compassion because it is built upon coercion and force. Who can truly feel compassionate when their property is stolen to be given to another? This process destroys the thankfulness of those who receive and embitters those from whom property is stolen. And since the government is in charge of redistributing everyone’s property, they regulate everything related to it – including how it is earned and used. Nothing is more unChristian and reprehensible than the anti-Freedom, compassionless, cruel system of socialism and its perverse cousin communism.

Marion G. Romney, another high leader in the LDS Church, gave an address wherein he contrasted Christ’s system and socialism. He stated:

“[N]otwithstanding my abhorrence of it, I am persuaded that socialism is the wave of the present and of the foreseeable future. It has already taken over or is contending for control of most nations. . . . We have in the United States, in converting our government into a social welfare state, have ourselves adopted much of socialism. Specifically, we have to an alarming degree adopted the use of the power of the state in the control and distribution of the fruits of industry. . . . Socialism takes. . . . That is the spirit of socialism: We’re going to take. . . . We have gone a long way on the road to public ownership and management of the vital means of property. In both of these areas the free agency of Americans has been greatly abridged. Some argue that we have voluntarily surrendered this power to government. Be this as it may, the fact remains that the loss of freedom with the consent of the enslaved, or even at their request, is nonetheless slavery.

“As to the fruits of socialism, we all have our own opinions. I myself have watched its growth in our own country and observed it in operation in many other lands. But I have yet to see or hear of its freeing the hearts of men of selfishness and greet or of its bringing peace, plenty, or freedom. These things it will never bring, nor will it do away with idleness and promote ‘industry, thrift and self-respect,’ for it is founded, in theory and in practice, on force, the principle of the evil one.”

Romney advised us to “eschew socialism and support the just and holy principles of the Constitution” (Romney, “Socialism and the United Order,” General Conference).

This last bit of advice is key; namely, the fact that socialism is not compatible with the Constitution. Too many falsely believe that socialism is merely a set of benevolent programs to help the poor and downtrodden. In reality, socialism is a complete world view – a demonic religion of the state. It is a set of beliefs that govern religion, the economy, education, government, and every other aspect of society. Socialism is incompatible with the Constitution. The two systems are opposites and only one can triumph. Let’s examine several reasons why this is so.

Socialism takes away an individual’s right to choose through regulation and taxation; the Constitution enables free will and personal accountability. Socialism promotes and enlarges the power of government whereas the Constitution is a set of restrictions on, and Thou Shalt Nots to, government. Socialism focuses on the collective while the Constitution champions and protects the individual. Socialism relies on force and coercion; the Constitution guarantees the Liberty of the individual and acknowledges the supremacy of the People over their government. Socialism tramples the individual’s God-given rights and forces him to submit to the whims of the collective will or the state whereas the Constitution defends an individual’s rights, thus strengthening the whole by protecting and empowering each member of society with just laws not subject to the passions of the mob or the tyrant.

In addition, socialism has failed everywhere it has been attempted. The Constitution, on the other hand, enabled America to become the freest, most successful, most powerful, most technologically advanced, most prosperous, and most influential nation in world history. More people have been enslaved, plundered, abused, and murdered under socialist/communist regimes than under systems of any other type. By contrast, the U.S. constitutional republican system has given more people more personal Freedom, wealth, security, and hope than any other system.

Despite these facts, more Americans now support socialism than ever before. More people have been indoctrinated in public schools to despise our Constitution and the good men who crafted it than in any past generation. More people than in the past are enticed by the dangerous something-for-nothing, laziness-promoting, self-centered promises of socialism. More people than ever before want to force their fellow man into believing, acting, and living as they do, despite their high-minded preaching about tolerance and Liberty. More people than ever before have been hoodwinked, perhaps by their good intentions, into believing in the mirage of a collectivist, state-sponsored utopia where equality and fairness and tolerance bloom in the radiant sun like daisies, and money flows like the Mississippi through the gold-paved streets as people relax in peace and harmony under the shade of lush trees. Socialism’s utopian dream is a vicious lie that is better represented by the harsh Gulag, secret police, mass graves, demolished churches, bloody revolution, civil war, and the terrified subjects who are treated like animals.

One need only examine the Union of Soviet SOCIALIST Republics, the National SOCIALIST (or Nazi) regime, Red China, North Korea, or the utterly failed European Union to see the true fruits of socialism. Think of the horrors and misery inflicted by these regimes. Think of failed economics and lack of rights and Liberties. Think of the general fear, suffering, and slavishness that prevails. Think of the atheism-inspired immorality that runs rampant. I repeat that more human beings have been enslaved, robbed, oppressed, and butchered under socialist regimes than under any other.

So when Bernie Sanders openly campaigns on socialist principles, you should know that, whatever his inner intentions, his policies would lead us into ruin, bondage, and misery like it has in every other nation that has adopted them. His ideas are anti-Constitution, anti-Freedom, anti-prosperity, anti-happiness, anti-truth, and anti-God. And yet, with these principles, Sanders has won the hearts of people in at least 17 states.

Yes, the real hit story of the 2016 election circus is that Americans have sunk so far than an admitted, unashamed socialist who has openly professed his love for the Soviet Union has so much popular support and is a hair away from the presidency. This is what has become of America. We are crumbling to pieces. Nikita Khrushchev’s 1959 prophecy to Ezra Taft Benson has almost become a full reality. The communist tyrant made this prediction:

“You Americans are so gullible. No, you won’t accept communism outright, but we’ll keep feeding you small doses of socialism until you’ll finally wake up and find you already have communism.”

Look around you and see if Khrushchev’s prediction has not come true. The government steals your wealth through graduated taxes, forces you to purchase abysmal government health care, compels you to send your children to public schools to be conditioned, indebts you to a privately-owned “national” bank, steals your land, property, and money through organizations such as the Bureau of Land Management, the IRS, and asset forfeiture laws, attempts to regulate communications and free speech, attempts to disarm us and leave us defenseless, etc. Read the 10 planks of the Communist Manifesto and you will find that America has instituted each of them to one extent of another. See this link for a breakdown of how the United States has implemented the Communist Manifesto: http://www.voicesofliberty.com/article/10-communist-manifesto-planks-of-the-us-government/

Thanks to socialists, admitted and secret, like Sanders, the Clintons, and the Bushes, America has placed herself in chains. Yes, communism, and its forerunner, socialism, is still the greatest evil facing us and seeking our overthrow and destruction. Instead of recoiling at these venomous traitors, we embrace them. The old Cherokee legend of the little boy and the rattlesnake is analogous to our situation. In this myth, a rattlesnake asks a passing boy to pick him up and carry him to his home to die. The boy does so. As they approach the snake’s home, the creature bites the boy in the chest. The boy gasps and asks the serpent why he did that, to which the serpent slyly replies: “You knew what I was when you picked me up.”

Americans believe socialism is dead or dying and have therefore unwittingly embraced it. Like the little boy in the legend, socialism will bite and kill America when it has accomplished its cunning designs unless we react immediately and hurl the serpent from us.

Ezra Taft Benson wrote: “The paramount issue today is freedom against creeping socialism” (Benson, The Red Carpet, 69).

I agree. Socialism, call it what you will, is evil. Yet, it is on the rise, as Bernie Sanders’ success proves. It is no longer creeping, it is running in full stride. What is the anecdote to this fatal disease? How do we get socialism’s venom out of our veins? Ultimately, there is but one answer: repentance. We must repent, as individuals and as a nation, of our sins – including the sin of embracing Satanic, Freedom-destroying philosophies like socialism, atheism, and humanism. No other political fix can work to revive our dying country.

Though it is not a cure, one thing that might help slow the bleeding is to elect good and honest men into office – men like Farley Anderson of the Independent American Party who is currently running for president. I’m not so closeminded to think that only one man in a nation of 320 million people is viable and worthy of our votes. However, we need to find someone who adheres to the Constitution and espouses correct principles which promote and defend individual Liberty and thwart collectivist attacks on our God-given rights.

One thing is certain, figures like Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton, Donald Trump, and Ted Cruz would be horrendous for America. Sanders is an avowed socialist who loved the Soviet Union. Clinton is a progressive (socialist), a profound liar, and an immoral woman. Trump is an adulterous populist who advocates torture and has a gross affinity for communist Russia. And Cruz clearly has no grasp on the Constitution when you consider some of the bills and policies he has supported in the past, such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership which he sponsored and the bogus, unconstitutional war on terror. You will only find a candidate worthy of your vote if you look to third parties and independents. There isn’t a dime’s worth of difference between the Republican and Democratic parties in the result of their policies upon our Freedom.

In conclusion, America has occasion to mourn this year at the fact revealed by the tremendous success of Bernie Sanders that socialism is not only alive and well, but growing in popularity and power. Communism and its herald, socialism, have infected this once magnificent country. We could become great again if we so chose. However, we are now in death throes and it takes courage to make the choice to step out of the line and do the right thing. We will continue to twitch and writhe until we eventually die as a society unless we realize our folly, eschew socialism in all its forms, throw the socialists from office, cling to the holy principles of the Constitution, repent of our sins, and turn to Christ in humble faith.

Zack Strong: Voting Independent is NOT a Vote for the Democrats

Zack Strong is a member of the Independent American Party. The following was published on his party’s website on February 25th:  Continue reading

Independent American Party releases first newsletter of 2016

Newsletter_1

The Independent American Party, a minor right-wing political party similar to the Constitution Party, released its first newsletter of 2016 online on February 25th. Read the full newsletter here. 

About the Independent American Party, from Wikipedia:

The Independent American Party (IAP) is a paleoconservative political party in the United States. It began as the Utah Independent American Party. The founders claim to have been inspired by a 1968 speech given byEzra Taft Benson, former United States Secretary of Agriculture, entitled “The Proper Role of Government”. The party’s first platform was based on Benson’s beliefs for the Proper Role of Government. These 15 principles for the proper role of government, taken from his speech, are held as the IAP’s basis for recruiting.[1]

History[edit]

In 1998 three options were presented to party members:

  1. to remain affiliated with the national American Party (AP),
  2. to affiliate with the National U.S. Taxpayers Party (later named Constitution Party), or
  3. create a national Independent American Party (IAP).

On May 16, 1998, the Utah IAP held a straw vote favoring the formation of a national Independent American Party. A committee of six people was selected to initiate the organization, and by November 7, 1998, the national IAP was recognized by a binding vote of 79%.

In January 1999, the national IAP began holding semi-annual National Conferences. The national chairman attended a number of state and national conventions of other like-minded third parties across the nation to build ties. The IAP website (launched in September 1998) grew and attracted individual members in about forty states.[1]

In 2001, the IAP grew from one-state party to three organized state parties, encompassing Minnesota, Tennessee, and Utah; and twelve prospective state parties. Area Coordinators were assigned to each of four regions of the country. The IAP adopted its first National Platform in August 2002 and ended the year with three organized and 18 prospective state parties. In 2003 the party changed the structure of its officer positions from the traditional Chair, Vice Chair, Secretary and Treasurer, and elected a Chair and 4 Vice-Chairs. Each Vice-Chair was to be a leader over a geographical area (Western, Mid-Western, North-Eastern, and South), and were each to lead one of the five Standing Committees (Rules, Events, Membership, Issues, and Media).[1]

By 2004, the party involvement dwindled, and it did not have ballot status in any state. However, in 2012, the party gained ballot access in New Mexico. It ran Jon Barrie for the United States Senate. He received 28,199 votes, or 3.63%. However, Barrie left the party after the election and joined the Constitution Party.[2]

The Proper Role of Government[edit]

The IAP espouses The Proper Role of Government as expressed by former Secretary of Agriculture Ezra Taft Benson.[3] According to the IAP: “This talk is the heart, soul and spirit of our Party. If you read this (below) you will know who we are!”[3]

The PEOPL process[edit]

In 2013, the Independent American Party adopted the acronym PEOPL in describing a grassroots voting process. The PEOPL process, which stands for People Electing Only Principled Leaders, describes a way to elect representatives without involving “The Spirit of Party.” Independent American Party officers cite George Washington‘s farewell speech, in which he warns “…in the most solemn manner against the baneful effects of the Spirit of Party,” and insist that the few selecting from the many, and then the many selecting from the few, is not correct principle.[4]

The first step in the PEOPL Process is signing The Independence Pledge.[5] The pledge is two-fold: a commitment to the principles for which the Founders stood, and a commitment to taking action.[5]

IAP annual summit[edit]

On August 2, 2014, the IAP conducted its fourth annual summit in St. George, Utah. Speakers included Sheriff Richard Mack and rancher Cliven Bundy.[6]

IAP Radio[edit]

IAP Radio contains a playlist of conservative speeches and books.[7] Book titles include The 5000 Year Leap and The Creature from Jekyll Island.[7]

HEDGES TO TAKE PART IN AIP PRIMARY

Prohibition Party nominee, James “Jim” Hedges is among those listed on the June 7 American Independent Party Presidential primary ballot in California. This marks the first time a Prohibition Presidential nominee has appeared on any statewide ballot in California since 1960.

The inclusion of Hedges on the AIP primary ballot is just another sign of the increased activity of the Prohibition Party during this election cycle.

Hedges expects an uphill fight in his bid to win the primary. However, he promises to campaign vigorously in the Golden State and is confident of a strong showing.

Zack Strong: The Right of Self-Defense

IAP logo

Zack Strong is a ranking member of the Independent American Party. The following article was posted by Kelly Gneiting on February 1st on the IAP website. Continue reading

Former National IAP Chairman challenges Chris Christie to a sumo wrestling match

Kelly Gneiting

 by Travis Gettys, Raw Story

An Idaho man who has joined the armed occupation of a federal nature preserve challenged New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie to a sumo wrestling match after the Republican presidential candidate criticized the militants. Continue reading

Former IAP National Chairman Kelly Gneiting talks about leaving the LDS Church and joining breakaway sect

KellyGn7

Kelly Gneiting

From Kelly Gneiting and the website of the Church of the Firstborn:

To all who read: this is my experience, and it happened at an instant suddenly.  Your personal journey may be somewhere along this journey that I’ve described below, or if you are/were not previously a member of the LDS church it may come differently.  I want you to know, and Frank Talker wants you to know, that you are not alone.  If you read the scriptures, many many stories of people who eventually see the entire plan laid out by God in the scriptures, endure certain efforts (seemingly) alone. Continue reading

Small Utah-born political party has rift over Oregon occupation, Mormon church stance

 independent-americanby Lee Davidson, Salt Lake Tribute

Kelly Gneiting, former chairman of the small Independent American Party — a group born in Utah that won about 3 percent of the vote here in 2014 — is criticizing the LDS Church for denouncing the armed seizure of a federal wildlife refuge in Oregon. Continue reading

New Oregon registration data prompts news story about Independent Party

Ballot Access News

The Oregon Secretary of State recently released the September 2015 voter registration data by party. See it here.

The new percentages are: Democratic 37.83%; Republican 29.65%; Independent Party 5.07%; Libertarian .81%; Working Families .54%; Pacific Green .45%; Constitution .17%; Progressive .09; Americans Elect .02%; other parties .93%; independent voters 24.44%. Americans Elect is no longer ballot-qualified, but Oregon law says recently disqualified parties continue to receive a registration tally for one more election, to see if they can get enough to re-qualify.

A year ago, the percentages were: Democratic 38.12; Republican 30.17%; Independent Party 4.82%; Libertarian .79%; Pacific Green .47%; Working Families .43%; Constitution .16%; Progressive .09%; Americans Elect .02%; other parties .98%; independent voters 23.94%.

Here is a news story about the Independent Party, which focuses on the new registration data.

Zack Strong: The Urgent Need to Prepare

SEPTEMBER 25, 2014 Posted by: KELLY GNEITING
 Posted at the Independent American Party (IAP) website:

Zack Strong is the Issues Committee Coordinator in the IAP

In the parable of the Ten Virgins told by our Lord, we are taught the virtue of being prepared. The parable is focused primarily on spiritual matters, but the temporal applications are also plain. Our world is turbulent and the need to prepare for contingencies and disasters of all types – whether man-made or natural – has never been greater. September is national preparedness month and therefore I am devoting this article to preparedness. I will briefly discuss food storage, relocation, contingency planning, and survival. I will also provide a basic list of useful items which one might use as a starting point in their own personal or family preparations, as well as helpful links (see the bottom of page) to other good sources of related information. This article will not be an exhaustive study, but rather a starter’s guide.

Food Storage

Perhaps the most important temporal preparation an individual can make is to gather a substantial food and water storage. Without these basic necessities of life, even the most astute “prepper” or experienced survivalist will die in a major disaster scenario. A lack of food or water can bring any nation – yes, even the United States – to its knees in a matter of days. Without food and water, society and civilization break down and anarchy ensues. It should be clear to any thinking person that a supply of food and water is paramount when speaking of preparedness.

Before I move on to the details of food storage, I want to address one prevalent myth that swirls around survival blogs and preparedness websites. Many folks erroneously believe that as long as you know how to hunt, you will always be able to obtain food and therefore do not need to store any. Similarly, I hear people boast that they don’t need to store up food because they have a garden or farm on which they can grow all the fresh food they will ever need. What such well-intentioned, but erring, people do not seem to grasp is the concept that society will more than likely not be running in an ordered, regular way in the event of a major disaster.

Those with gardens and farms might be forced to relocate or evacuate their homes without notice due to war, fire, flood, approaching plague, sudden drought, terrain-altering earthquake, or any number of other cases. A serious drought might dry up the water supply and make gardening or farming impossible. An exceptionally harsh, early, or long winter could destroy the harvest. Those who have staked their survival on the ability to hunt would likewise suffer in a disaster scenario. The food supply – whether it be deer, ducks, squirrels, or some other game – would dry up quite rapidly if everyone was suddenly forced to hunt for their livelihood. A drought or bad winter could also seriously effect the available food supply. But even in the best of times, hunting is never a totally reliable art because of factors outside of the individual’s control.

Gardening and hunting are incredibly important skills, and I will touch on them later, but both require a fairly stable set of conditions in order to produce a beneficial outcome and therefore cannot be relied upon completely. Trying to transport a full food storage in the event of a relocation or evacuation scenario might also be difficult and is not 100% reliable either, but it is, in my estimation, more reliable than depending on the elements or on wild game for food in a disaster.

How much food is necessary to store? You will hear different recommendations from everyone. Some say one month, others three months, and others plan for longer. However, I emphatically recommend that you have at least, as a minimum, one year of food and water. On the face of it, getting a one year’s supply of food might seem like an impossible task logistically. It also might seem like overkill. Yet I believe that a one year supply will be vital to our survival in the dark days I foresee approaching.

I highly recommend that you visit the following website to find what is referred to as a “food calculator”: http://www.thefoodguys.com/foodcalc.html This food calculator allows you to type in the number of people in your family and their ages and then it approximates how much food storage you need. It breaks down the list into many categories and gives specifics on how much wheat, flour, honey, legumes, water, etc, that you will need. I have found their approximations incredibly accurate. Overall it is a great resource.

Using the food calculator at the above link, one person will need the following to make a one year supply of food. I will not list specific food items (which the food calculator conveniently provides), but will simply give you the amount that you will need for each broad food grouping:

Grains: 300 lbs
Legumes: 60 lbs
Sugars: 60 lbs
Fruit: 185 lbs
Vegetables: 185 lbs
Dairy: 75 lbs
Fats and Oils: 13 lbs

As you can see, gathering a true food storage is no small task. It will take time, money, and storage space. Many companies offer an entire one year food package that you can order online or out of a catalogue. However, this is far from the most economical way to go about getting food storage. The cheapest way to get a food storage is to go to your local grocery store and simply buy bulk items such as 20 lb bags of rice and beans or 45 lb buckets of wheat and oats.

An effective way to start building food storage is to simply by an extra item each time you go to the grocery store. For instance, if I need a bag of dried beans, it is just as easy to grab two bags. If I’m already looking for some rice, why not throw a second bag in the shopping cart? If I am buying canned vegetables, I would throw an extra can or two in my basket. If an item is on sale, pounce on it. In all reality, it does not take much effort to collect a food storage, but it does take time unless you happen to have hundreds of dollars sitting around to devote to food forage at the drop of a hat. By buying your food storage a little at a time and in logical increments, you won’t feel an exceptionally heavy drain on your wallet. The key is to get started today. I first got my year’s supply of food as a 26 year old broke college student. If I could do it, you can, too.

A word on water. Even more important than food, is water. A human can go longer without food than without water. Water is vital. In a crisis scenario, water – especially clean water – will be a priceless commodity which is far more valuable than gold, silver coins, or physical objects no matter how fancy or high end they may be considered now. A person needs to drink approximately one gallon of water every day. The exact amount will vary from person to person, but you will want least one gallon per person, per day. Then you need to think about cooking, cleaning, and other functions for which water is necessary. When you really sit down to think about it, the amount of water one needs to store is staggering. But store it you must. I also recommend folks read the following article dispelling many common myths about water and

Though I recommend storing all the water you will need for at least a year, I highly encourage folks to invest in various water purifiers. I think that everyone should have always one, preferably multiple, LifeStraws in your survival gear or bug-out bag. LifeStraw is simply a water purifier built into an easy-to-use straw format which weighs barely over an ounce. You open the ends, stick it in the water, and drink. This device is designed to be used in muddy, bacteria-infested, dirty water. LifeStraw has been used in water polluted with feces and other harmful elements. LifeStraw will filter about 264 gallons, or approximately one year’s worth. It truly is a wonderful invention and something I deem vital for anyone seriously contemplating preparedness and survival. Other companies, such as Frontier or AQUAGEAR, make quality products that are similar to LifeStraw. Whatever brand you go with, make sure that you include some type of water filtration device in your water storage.

Entire books have been written on food and water storage, so I am, naturally, leaving a lot of information out. I want to share one final thought on food storage, however. Our forefathers all stored food – often many years worth. It was so fundamental that no one questioned it or thought twice about doing it. Today, however, those of us who prepare for future eventualities are called paranoid, extremists, or foolish. Despite these criticisms, we must do the right thing and prepare ourselves and families for the disasters which will strike at some point. Noah built his ark over a span of decades, during which time his neighbors and friends mocked him. However, when the rain started to fall, Noah and his family were the only ones spared the deluge that followed. The point is that it is better to be prepared years too early than one day too late. When the crap hits the fan, will you want to be the one who had pointed the finger of scorn at those crazy “preppers,” or one of those “preppers” who gathered a food and water storage and was ready to meet disaster? No one can make that choice for you, but I plead with you to begin to prepare now. Your future life may very well depend upon your present preparations.

Relocation

One of the most dangerous and incomprehensible tendencies of modern society is to group into cities. Cities are inherently dangerous and naturally lead to corruption, vice, and a collectivist mentality among their inhabitants. I believe, as did Thomas Jefferson and many others, that cities sap the strength out of a nation and individuals and are anathema to Freedom. I would not want to be caught anywhere near a major city of metropolitan hub in the event of economic collapse, civil war, invasion, martial law, serious plague, or major natural disaster (for instance, the earthquakes which we know will someday hammer the Wasatch Front in Utah, the New Madrid Fault area along the Mississippi, or the multiple fault areas of California). Large population density is perhaps more to fear even than nuclear weapons or the wrath of Mother Nature.

I believe that world war is virtually inevitable and that the next war will reach our soil. In the almost certain event of a major war with Russia and China, for example, I would not recommend that anyone be anywhere close to major military bases and installations, major ports, or strategic cities. Seattle, for instance, is close enough to the Bangor submarine base that it will undoubtedly receive direct fallout in the event of a nuclear attack. The same goes for San Diego, Los Angeles, Ogden, UT, Baltimore, Albuquerque, Charleston, Cheyenne, WY, Great Falls, MT, Colorado Springs, Denver, Norfolk, and many other cities – some of which will likely receive direct hits owing to their proximity to strategic military targets.

But even if war were to never occur, civil unrest or economic collapse could result in mass rioting. Would a rural town devolve into riots? Perhaps on occasion, but its overall stability would be far greater than in a city. In the event of a trucker strike, cities could be without food. Again, if the power grid collapsed, it would be a matter of hours before total chaos and anarchy ensued. In every major hurricane or natural disaster, store shelves are emptied within hours. The L.A. Riots proved the danger of cities, as have multiple other riots and protests over the years. Police will not be able to maintain order, and may in fact instigate confusion, and cities will quickly divide into gangs or tribal groups. We arrogantly think that it could not happen here, yet history defies and rebukes such a claim. Just the simple fact that do many people are piled on top of one another in cities guarantees that fighting will eventually happen. Human beings are naturally selfish and will go to inhuman extremes to protect themselves, indulge their lusts, or survive – and much more so when they get into large groups. American cities would turn into chaotic, tribal war zones within days in a major crisis.

Cities are unhygienic and unhealthy places which invite disease and provide juicy targets for governments or nefarious groups to launch a plague or bioweapon. If such a naturally occurring or man-made plague hits, are your chances of surviving better in Boston, Dallas, Seattle, or Salt Lake City, or in a rural community that no one has ever heard of? The answer is obvious. Furthermore, a mass pandemic would likely result in forced quarantines or rounding up of the sick or potentially infected. In such a scenario, you would be better far away from the cities. Even after Hurricane Katrina people were bearded into the Super Dome and imprisoned there, often suffering horrible abuses and not allowed to leave for long periods of time. And Hurricane Katrina was a minor incident compared to what I am envisioning.

Maneuverability is also severely restricted in a city, whereas living in a rural location, small town, or outlying suburb would provide ample opportunity to avoid mobs, stay out of sight, slip into the woods, escape, evade detection, or flee to a designated retreat or hideout. If war hits this country – whether civil war or foreign invasion – smaller outlying areas will not be primary targets. And again, an invading army would likely bypass a small farming community off the beaten path whereas a large city situated on a highway is a prime target for subjugation. Refugees moving from city to city can also become like swarms of locusts devouring everything in their path. In any scenario, being in a smaller town somewhat off the beaten path will give you greater chances of survival than any city ever could.

If the above is true, then it follows that relocation out of the major cities is wise. And if such a move is wise, then doing so sooner than later can only be a good thing. You cannot cut ties to the world and leave on a dime, however, but rather you should develop and follow a plan for moving, establishing a lifeline in a new location, and setting down roots. The best guide on this process in existence is the third volume of Joel Skousen’s book “Strategic Relocation: North American Guide to Safe Places.” I cannot recommend Joel’s work highly enough. His political analysis is superb and his preparedness advice is unsurpassed.

If you want to know more about the concept of relocation, why it is important, and where some of the safer locations in the country (and in your own state) are, then buy Joel’s book. For my part, I want to add that I believe the single safest area of the country is the Intermountain West. The general nexus of Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, and Montana is a great area. I independently have pegged this area as the safest area of the nation, but other experts such as Joel Skousen (http://www.worldaffairsbrief.com) and Jim Rawles (http://survivalblog.com) have confirmed this view in my mind. You can find pockets of safety in most areas of America, but the Intermountain West is your best bet for long term survival through the storms that are approaching. Whatever you do, you have got to start thinking strategically and making preparations now.

Contingency Planning

One of the vital things that many otherwise preparedness-oriented folks overlook is strategic planning. Yes, you may have a food storage, but do you have a detailed plan to escape your city or town if you need to? Have you thoroughly considered and mapped escape routes, alternate or back roads, retreat locations, or meet-up spots for your family? Have you thought up a multitude of scenarios spanning from martial law to invasion to earthquake to famine? You must think about these things and make preparations.

One of the most critical aspects of strategic thinking is to really get to know your local terrain inside and out. You need to know back roads in case an earthquake severs the main highway of a military blockade stops traffic on Main Street or a raging wildfire is crossing through town and shutting down normal routes. You need to know who you can trust in your locale, which areas of town might be conducive to concealment, which spots would make for a good defense ice stand, etc. you should become familiar with the physical terrain – rivers, streams, hills, canyons, forests, valleys, etc. Knowing your terrain might one day allow you to escape an enemy, evade capture, outwit a mob, defend against criminals, keep your head low, or outrun a raging fire. In any case, you have to be prepare to roll with the punches – and preparing in advance is the best way to do that.

Like food storage, contingency planning could be the sole topic of a lengthy book. Suffice to day that we need to decide BEFOREHAND what we will do in a given scenario. Will we run and evade threats or will we stand and fight? Will we conceal ourselves and wait it out or will we flee to a secondary retreat location? Will we and together with other like-minded families or will we go it alone? Will we stand for our principles and beliefs or will we sell ourselves and our family and friends out in a moment of trial? These are all things we must think about, plan out, discuss, and decide before disaster ever rears its head.

Survival

One of the important things that we must all begin to do is to develop skills which will be useful to ourselves and to others in the event of a crisis. I can’t cover everything here, but I will give a few suggestions to hopefully stimulate your own thoughts.

Basic and advanced first aid is a valuable skill and one which may save your own life or the life of a friend, relative, or simply of a fellow human in need. There are many modern aids to help with this next skill, but starting a fire is something we should all know how to do. Hunting is an important skill, as is gutting and butchering an animal once killed/trapped. Gardening is a skill we can all develop now and one which will yield delicious and healthy dividends long before a crisis. Knowing how to tie knots and handle ropes is valuable. Being able to utilize a map and a compass might come in handy if/when technology goes down. Knowing how to use a knife, an axe, a saw, a chainsaw, and various other tools might become vital. Knowing how to weld, do carpentry, or basic construction will likely be very important. Speaking a foreign language or two might not be necessary, and is not normally associated with survival, but who can doubt but that it would be valuable in many situations both presently or during a collapse scenario? Knowing how to build a shelter, particularly a concealed one, may very well save your life. Knowing how to identify edible herbs, mushrooms, roots, or berries might save your life as well. And don’t forget to learn natural and traditional medical remedies instead of relying upon the often dangerous drugs and pharmaceuticals dished out to the population today. All of these skills, and many more, are things which would certainly help you of society were to go south. I will leave it to your judgement to decide which skills will be necessary for you to acquire, but I do know that having a varied skill set will not only benefit yourself but those around you.

Another important part of survival is getting and staying in shape. You will be at a disadvantage if the need arises to survive in harsh crisis conditions of you are obese, out of shape, or sickly. You need to eat healthily, give your body the proper vitamins and essential minerals it needs, exercise regularly, drink a lot of water, and remain active. Most jobs nowadays require us to sit at a desk for hours on end. Science and good old fashioned common sense both prove that sitting, on average, shortens life span, creates complications in your health, and increases your susceptibility to disease. Simply put, you don’t need to be competing in marathons, but you need to keep active and moving. You need to work on losing weight if you are too big. Respect for your body – which is shown by taking care of it – is important. A strong body also makes for a stronger and more alert mind – and you need to have your wits about you in a dangerous situation. You can begin this process by abandoning soda, coffee, power drinks, and pure junk food, and by getting enough water, rest, and exercise. You will quickly see improvements in your health, mental acuity, perceptiveness, and energy levels if you will follow these steps.

Next I would like to talk about what type of gear you might want to put in a bug-out bag, 72 hour kit, or survival pack. Once again, people will give different recommendations, but I will discuss what I deem important to have. I will give an explanation followed by a list of items.

First off, I believe that second only to a one year food and water storage is the need to store warm winter clothes, blankets, etc. I foresee a time when the power grids in the United States are knocked out, whether through an EMP attack, a solar flare, or as a result of war or harsh weather. Imagine the frightful scenario if an EMP attack were to destroy the power grid in mid December. Last year the winter season broke literally thousands of records for cold temperatures, amount of snow, etc. The winters appear to be growing colder. What would happen if your city’s power went out suddenly during the winter? Would you be equipped to survive? Would you be able to keep your family warm? What if America were invaded during the winter time and you were forced to evacuate your town on foot – would you be warm enough to make the journey? If a natural disaster leveled your city, destroyed the roads, and forced you out into the cold, could you survive negative temperatures? These might seem like far fetched scenarios, but they really are not.

I believe the need is great – no matter whether you live in sunny Florida, California, or Texas, or in Fairbanks, Alaska, Kalispell, Montana, or New York City – to have have warm clothing, a nice winter coat, a sturdy pair of warm waterproof gloves, winter boots, a warm face mask or hat, thermal undergarments, warm socks, and thick winter clothing. You will find varied opinions about which coat or gloves or boots work best or are the warmest, so I suggest that you do research and test out various products. I will end by repeating my feeling that the need for warm, waterproof, wind resistant winter clothing is dire. In fact, I would label winter clothing a necessity.

Apart from winter clothing, you will want a wide variety of gear and items ranging from emergency blankets to solar/crank radios to first aid kits to paracord to potassium iodide tablets to a breathing respirator to a saw, etc. Directly below I have provided a list of what I currently have in my own survival/bug-out bag or which I am in the process of adding to it. I should first of all explain that I favor a slightly larger style of pack rather than a smaller backpack style. My current pack is a “K-Cliffs Catlespine Internal Frame Backpack.” I won’t bother with specific brand names in most cases, but here is what I have packed inside my pack:

– LifeStraw
– first aid kit
– 50 ft. of paracord
– rope
– ThyroSafe, Potassium Iodide Tablets (I currently have 2 boxes of 20, 65 mg tablets)
– mess kit
– portable stove
– multiple boxes and books of wind/waterproof matches
– waterproof fire sticks
– fire lighters
– windproof lighter
– hatchet
– saw
– shovel
– pocket saw
– knife
– machete
– four function Life Gear flashlight
– headlamp
– hand warmers
– waterproof gloves
– sleeping bag
– tent
– tarp
– hat/beanie
– thermal undergarments
– extra socks and underwear
– MREs with heaters
– pens, pencils, and a notepad
– Havalon Piranta surgical steel knife (I highly recommend this scalpel-like knife to hunters)
– pocket knife
– map of your region, state, and specific location (I have individual maps of Utah, Idaho, Montana, and Wyoming as well as Idaho-specific locations and one of the Spokane, WA area)
– Duct Tape
– Moleskin
– face mask
– commercial-grade paint respirator
– Frontier mini filtration straw
– AQUAGEAR water filtration bottle
– whistle
– compass
– fire starter (flint)
– a hook and fishing line
– 8.45 oz boxes of water
– Kaito solar/crank/battery-operated radio with flashlight
– Datrex emergency ration bar
– Mainstay food bar
– SOS Food Lab, Inc. food bars
– extra batteries
– vitamin C
– Blistex chapstick
– sunglasses
– Aloe Vera ointment
– insect repellent
– sewing kit
– deodorant
– toilet paper
– toothbrush and toothpaste (non-fluoride)
– biodegradable soap
– nail clippers and file
– bandana
– binoculars (having worked with optics, I absolutely recommend Vortex above all other brands)
– two-way radios
– pepper spray
– handgun with box of ammunition
– silver coins
– pocket Constitution and Declaration of Independence
– Citizen Rule Book
– scriptures (last, but certainly not least)

If you are not satisfied with my list, here are several other lists that others have compiled. You will find variations, but the core items are virtually identical in all lists:

http://bugoutbagacademy.com/free-bug-out-bag-list/
http://www.thesurvivalistblog.net/bug-out-bag-contents-lists-and-bugging-out/
http://www.shtfplan.com/emergency-preparedness/building-your-bugout-bag-the-complete-infographic-checklist_04302013
– http://survivalcache.com/bug-out-bag/
– http://graywolfsurvival.com/669/bug-out-bag-list-contents/
– http://offgridsurvival.com/survival-gear-bugoutbags/
http://www.modernsurvivalonline.com/Files/evac/articles/BOB-SurvivalKit.pdf
– http://www.thebugoutbagguide.com
– http://www.outsideonline.com/outdoor-gear/gear-shed/gear-guy/Bugout-Survival-Bag.html

Whatever you put in your pack, make sure it is specific to your circumstances (i.e. terrain, environment, etc) but yet versatile enough to use in many conditions. Even if you cannot afford to purchase a nice pack or new gear, start by putting something together. Whether you have to use an older backpack or a duffle bag, start gathering up household items which may be useful (painkillers, tape, extra batteries, an extra knife, etc). It is not difficult to throw together a decent survival pack fairly quickly once you begin seriously considering the matter. Once you get your initial pack, continually improve upon it as your circumstances and means allow.

Summary

In summation, the key to getting prepare is to start now. Unless you have hundreds of dollars laying around which you can plop down today, you will need time to gather all the necessary supplies and to develop plans for future scenarios. I have provided a very basic outline for preparedness – it is up to you to take that outline and build upon it and tweak it to meet your family’s needs.

If you have made it to the bottom of this article, I take it that you are truly concerned, as am I, about the future of this country. If so, you already have a leg up on most other folks. The first step to preparedness is a desire to prepare and an awareness that there is a need to prepare – even if you do not know exactly how to go about it. I hope that my article gave you a few bits of advice. Others have devoted much more time to this up subject than I have and have put their work online, in books, etc. Below this article I have provided a list of website links to look up. You will find many archived full of information about all things survival and preparedness. I recommend that you take some time to go through them and glean out the information pertinent to you. As I have repeated often, the key to preparedness is to start. Start today in some way, shape, or form and you can get the ball rolling.

As I close, I want to share one more admonition and bit of advice. No People can survive as a free, prosperous, peaceful, and happy nation if they do not worship God, live His laws, and live a moral life. The same is true of individuals. Many political fixes need to be made in our bloated statist system, but the only true remedy for our nation’s problems is found not in D.C., but in our hearts. We must repent as a nation and humble ourselves before our God. Even if our once great Union does not follow this course, we will be blessed individually if we do. Center your life on the Gospel of the Master and He will be with you no matter what storms and tempests you are called to pass through. May God help inspire you in your preparations for our turbulent future.

Short List of sources for additional information:

– http://www.thefoodguys.com/foodcalc.html
– http://survivalblog.com
http://www.preparednesspro.com/do-you-have-enough
http://www.backdoorsurvival.com/20-items-to-kick-start-your-food-storage-plan
http://www.offthegridnews.com/2010/08/02/how-to-create-a-food-storage-supply-for-you-and-your-spouse-for-as-little-as-5-per-week/
http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-start-a-food-storage-on-138765
http://www.moneycrashers.com/long-term-home-food-storage-emergency/
http://foodstoragemadeeasy.net
http://www.foodstorage.com
http://www.backwoodshome.com/articles/tate55.html
http://www.tacticaldefensellc.com/long-term-food-storage-done-right.html
http://www.provident-living-today.com/Bulk-Food-Storage.html
https://www.lds.org/topics/food-storage?lang=eng
http://www.realsimple.com/food-recipes/shopping-storing/food/food-storage
http://extension.usu.edu/files/publications/publication/fn_502.pdf
http://beprepared.com/education/15-tips-for-food-storage
http://www.glennbeck.com/content/articles/article/198/48306/
http://readynutrition.com/resources/are-you-ready-series-best-practices-for-long-term-food-storage_03042011/
http://makedirtnotwaste.org/sites/default/files/a-z_food_storage_guide-web.pdf
– http://www.thesurvivalistblog.net
http://www.preparedness.com
http://www.cheaperthandirt.com
http://www.buylifestraw.com
http://preparednesspro.wordpress.com/2009/08/11/myths-and-facts-of-water-storage/
http://www.waterandhealth.org/drinkingwater/water_storage.php3
http://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-living/nutrition-and-healthy-eating/in-depth/water/art-20044256
http://www.ki4u.com
– “The Good News About Nuclear Destruction” – http://www.ki4u.com/goodnews.htm
http://infidelbodyarmor.com
http://www.survivalschool.us
http://www.wildernesscollege.com
http://modernsurvivalblog.com
http://modernsurvivalblog.com/preps/survival-preparedness-with-limited-resources/
http://www.preparednesspro.com
http://preparednesspro.wordpress.com
http://www.shtfplan.com
http://www.luckygunner.com
– “Strategic Relocation: North American Guide to Safe Places” by Joel Skousen
– “Strategic Relocation” the film at http://www.shtfplan.com/headline-news/strategic-relocation-where-to-go-when-it-hits-the-fan-full-movie_11162012
http://www.joelskousen.com
http://www.worldaffairsbrief.com
http://www.cpr-savers.com
http://www.respiratormaskprotection.com
http://americanpreppersnetwork.net/index.php
http://www.forgesurvivalsupply.com
http://www.survival-supply.com
http://www.offthegrid.com
http://www.natureskills.com/articles/survival/
http://offgridsurvival.com/category/survival/skills/
http://www.fieldandstream.com/photos/gallery/survival/shelter/2006/10/seven-primitive-survival-shelters-could-save-your-life/?image=0
http://www.wildwoodsurvival.com/index.html
http://www.wilderness-survival.net
http://www.practicalsurvivor.com
http://chuckbaldwinlive.com/Articles/tabid/109/ID/378/A-Suggested-Survival-List.aspx



– See more at: http://www.independentamericanparty.org/2014/09/the-urgent-need-to-prepare-by-zack-strong/#sthash.HkbcUeUb.Suvn83Zb.dpuf