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Sunday, December 27, 2009

Drug resistant TB in United States

We plan for the worst in disasters but we don't often think of diseases, especially TB.

TB is making a comeback, only now there are new strains of the disease that are drug resistant. This has occurred from the fluid transfer of people from other nations to the United States from third world countries and countries high in HIV and other serious diseases. Most people with HIV end up dieing from TB. Now there is a strain that is anti-biotic resistant.

How can we prepare against this type of problem? It is airborne and TB germs can float and last several hours in a room after a person has entered and either coughed, spoken or sneezed. Air transportation poses a problem as people are breathing the same unfiltered air for a several hour flight. A mask might help but it is impractical that we will give up our freedom on a flight by wearing a mask the entire flight.

Typically the poor and those who are HIV positive are carriers of TB. A person with TB will infect an average of more than ten to 15 others annually before they die.

Tuberculosis is the top single killer of adults worldwide, and it lies dormant in one and three people, according to WHO (the World Health Organization). Of those, 10 percent will develop active TB, and about 2 million people a year will die from it.

I do not have the solid definitive answer on how to not contract TB. It appears that not engaging in risky behavior such as illegal drugs and multiple sex partners would have to be a given because these behaviors place you at higher risk for HIV.
Next, I would say that if you are planning on doing any traveling to other countries that you seriously consider using a mask while traveling both to and from. Thirdly, I would reduce the amount of time you are exposed to people that have a hacking cough, including reducing the amount of time spent in ghettos and high risk areas such as bars and nightclubs.

Finally I would recommend that you maintain good health by regular checkups and should you actually contract the dreaded disease, do not panic...take all of your medications, without sharing and cutting yourself short. You may or may not have a resistant variety of TB. If you do have a resistant variety, isolation in a TB sanatorium may be necessary with avoidance of other people part of the treatment.

Since it's first discovery in 2007, resistant TB has spread world wide and may be the next epidemic. Let's pray it does not spread as did the Pandemic FLU virus.

So far, numbers in the US are small and not a serious threat, but just imagine a crowded air flight with a seriously sick individual could put the nation on alert.

It is not like we can stock up on antibiotics since these are prescription drugs. We are at the mercy of staying aware of our surroundings and our associates. Staying healthy may be our best defense. When our immune systems are down we are more prone to infections and viruses and germs. So use common sense and stay vigilant and take good care of your family members.

For more information: see MSNBC news article on, "First case of extremely drug-resistant TB in U.S."

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas

I wish you all a Merry Christmas. It is important that we not forget the reason for the season. Christ's entire life was about being prepared, giving and setting a good example. He stands ready to still give to us as we seek him.

The gifts we give and receive are way down the list from the importance of giving of our own time, talents and service to our family and friends. May we all spend more quality time with each member of our families as this is what Christmas time is really all about.

After Christmas sales are a good time to spend more quality time gathering our family together to be prepared physically for the hard times that lie ahead. Let them know how much you care by sharing goals and plans for a better tomorrow. Plan family time into 2010. Spend at least a couple of days per week with family. They do not care how much you know about preparedness until they know how much you really care about them as a family, and when you include them in the preparation phase of being ready for any disaster, they will feel more a part of the real needs and reasons for preparedness.

The areas we need to all be concerned about are food, light, heat, shelter, clothing, communications, water, fuel and financial security. Budgeting these items makes things workout for the best. Absolutely nothing beats being prepared physically, emotionally and spiritually. These three give us balance in life.

May 2010 be a great year for you and yours. May God bless America and may God bless the readers of this blog and their preparedness efforts.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

MS-13: Are you prepared against organized evil?

Source: http://www.preparednesspro.com/blog/

This is another great article on being prepared for organized gang activity (by Kellene Bishop).

Author’s Note: Most of this content was posted earlier this year. However, news as of late has caused us to tweak the story and re-post it.

As I’ve shared with you previously, I’m not one who is keen on the phrase “Emergency Preparedness.” I believe in preparedness, pure and simple, and thus being self-reliant. Whether it be today or in the future as the result of some social breakdown, I feel that it’s important to understand what organized evil exists out there so that you can make an educated decision as to how you will defend yourself. I’m speaking specifically of the highly organized and militant gangs here in the U.S.

Keep in mind that whether it’s today or tomorrow, dealing with gangs is something we have to do whether we like it or not. For some they are simply a prophetic fulfillment of the “latter days.” For others they are a force that’s to be reckoned with by “someone else.” And to others they are simply something we see portrayed on television. Unfortunately though, the presence of gangs and their unthinkable violence is very real. And yes, they’ve even infiltrated a city near you. One of the very worst of these modern replications of organized crime groups is MS-13.

MS-13 is not an obscure gang. In fact, the FBI defines them as the most organized crime entity in the U.S. They are feared not solely because of their horrific violent acts, but due to their organization. They specifically target middle and high schools for recruitments. They have no compunction towards committing violent acts upon their fellow citizens, as they fear no repercussions. Their greatest criminal focuses are on human and drug trafficking, and contract killing combined with unspeakable violence. A crime will never be committed by one of these members without it being accompanied by a beating, a rape, murder, dismemberment, or all of the above. They also have known ties and alliances to Al-Queda.

MS-13 is otherwise known as Mara Salvatrucha. Visual evidence of their presence in your area will be manifested by graffiti in your area that says “MS,” “Mara,” or “MS-13.”

Their violent organized traits stem from the fact that the majority of their founders are well trained in guerilla warfare in El Salvador. As such they possess a level of methodical training and skill set that rivals any other gang. Their initiation requirements are bloodcurdling. After enduring a slow 13 count beating—minimum—the inductee must then commit a violent act by either a beating, a rape, or a murder prior to being accepted. If the inductee fails in their efforts within 13 hours, then they are murdered in order that the MS-13 does not get marginalized by “incompetents.” (If you are a female inductee, the right of passage would include an obligatory gang rape). The more violent they are, the more elevated they are among their “military” crime group. One MS-13 member claimed during questioning by the FBI, “The crazier you are known to be, the more respect the gang gives you.” On November 26, 2008, Jonathan Retana was convicted of the murder of Miguel Angel Deras, which the authorities linked to an MS-13 initiation.

As further evidence of their organizational skills, there is a unique communication which takes place among them. Gang “signs” are also used by MS-13 including the infamous “devil horns” sign which gang members “throw” to signify their ownership of their turf. (Such sign is also a common communication between members of the Illuminati.) The devil horn sign, when turned upside down, forms the letter “M”. Members also use multiple hand signals to communicate. Known as “stacking”, these signs can be used to indicate their clique or to coordinate an attack. Pulling up on the shoulders of the shirt indicates an imminent attack while rubbing the belly indicates a shooting. A brush on the left shoulder indicates a stabbing attack. One of the defining factors of MS-13 is their absolute intolerance for anyone who informs the police of their activities. Court papers in Nassau County detail recorded telephone conversations where a MS-13 member bragged how he had put a stop to an informant – “I put one in the chest and three in the head.”

Once a member is brought into the gang, they are in for life. They cannot act without the boss’s consent – they cannot kill without reason, cannot talk to the police, cannot skip gang meetings, nor can they leave the gang. MS-13 has no tolerance for gang members who drop out. A MS-13 member and even their family members must die in order to exit MS-13, no exceptions. On May 13, 2006, Ernesto “Smokey” Miranda, an ex-high ranking soldier and one of the founders of the Mara Salvatrucha, was murdered at his home in El Salvador a few hours after declining to attend a party for a gang member who had just been released from prison. Not only had he offended his “brothers” for not attending the party, but he had threatened dissent by studying law and working to keep children out of gangs.

The majority of these gang members are in the country illegally. As such they are deported regularly. Going along with the fact that MS-13 members can’t simply get out, the much reported incident of Edward Guzman, a 14 year old MS-13 member, proves the more significant punishment of deportation. Guzman left Guatemala to escape the gang lifestyle. He illegally came to the U.S. At the age of 16, on March 10, 2004, he was deported back to his home. He hid in his home for several days. His first day to venture out was March 20, 2004. He made it only 5 blocks where he was shot multiple times. MS-13 grudges never die.

Wikipedia mistakenly states that this gang originated in Los Angeles. In fact they originated in El Salvador and were the largest formalize gang there. The gangs then infiltrated the Los Angeles area as it was already rampant with a gang culture. While they originally consisted of Salvadorans, Hondurans, Guatemalans, and Nicaraguans, their desired “market” penetration has forced them to take on any Central American individual who can suitably pass their initiation and subsequent performance requirements. Their targets are indiscriminate so long as they can wreak horror and obedience to their reign in their communities. Case in point, in the minds of an MS-13 member, the term “road rage” means nothing to them. It is their road, and they allow you to drive on it. Obstruction of such rights of passage, means death to the offender. On June 22, 2008, in San Francisco, CA, a 21-year old MS-13 gang member, Edwin Ramos, shot and killed a father, Anthony Bologna, 48, and his two sons Michael, 20, and Matthew, 16, after their car briefly blocked Ramos from completing a left turn down a narrow street.

In spite of their cache of firearms which makes a police force look like a one-man hillbilly stockpile, most MS-13 members are adept and fond of the use of a machete.
MS-13 Photo c/o standeyo.com

They are not a criminal gang so much as they are much more focused on political power. As such they have been ordered to focus on eliminating border patrol guards along the Arizona border as it interferes with their money-making activities. (see: Washington Times article and Daily Bulletin article) In Honduras, MS-13 kidnapped in their home country of El Salvador. They were able to execute a son of the Honduras President Ricardo Maduro after kidnapping and torturing him (1997). All over Central America, their acts of death and defiance are intended to taunt government officials. Members also left a dismembered corpse with a note for the Honduras president that “more people will die… the next victims will be police and journalists.” In 2004, Guatemalan President Oscar Berger received a similar messages attached to the body of a dismembered man from MS-13 members. As such, this gang operates with no fear of government reprisals. Since they were able to sufficiently overcome any such consequences with their own Salvadoran government, every country, state, and community they enter they do so with the same haughty view of the Laws ability to deliver suitable consequences. They do not fear a prison sentence. Rather they return to their gangs upon release as an elevated veteran. Thus there are uninhibited in the horror of their criminal acts.

They have permeated every state in the U.S. sufficiently. Even our nation’s capital holds no resistance for them. In fact, they flaunt the fact that they are the strongest gang in the D.C. area. In northern Virginia and southern Maryland, around the Washington DC area, local authorities estimate MS-13 membership to be between 5,000 and 6,000 members. In July of 2003, the Washington DC area encountered three known murders attributed to MS-13. The first was the murder of a federal informant. The second was the shooting death of a 17 year old boy. The third was the death of a 16 year old boy who had both of his hands completely chopped off.
In Dec. of 2004 in Honduras, a local MS-13 chapter stopped a traveling bus mostly filled with women and children and sprayed it with automatic gunfire. No robbery was attempted. No rape or kidnapping. Simply murder and mayhem which resulted in the death of 28 persons. Their motive was to cause horror in the government as indicated by a note left behind promising the government that more killings of this nature would take place. (A signature threat among MS-13 members.)

So why should YOU be concerned about them? Because they are yet one more aspect of a realistic potential situation for which you need to be prepared. Do not underestimate their violence. You will not be able to reason with them. You will not be able to give them what they want and have them simply go away. Horrific violence is at their very core. You will need to be mindful of them and to defend yourself appropriately. You can be assured that in spite of their organization “skills” they will not be prepared for any type of an emergency scenario, thus they will use their gang to prey upon the preparedness efforts of others. As such, you must indeed be prepared to defend your home, family, and supplies against these modern-day pirates.

Copyright 2009 Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop. All rights reserved. You are welcome to repost this information so long as it is credited to Preparedness Pro & Kellene Bishop.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Cold Weather Fun

With the temperatures dipping into the teens and single digits, it is a good time to remember to use winter rules for warmth such as layering your clothing to hold in body heat; conserving body heat by wearing a hat and gloves; and restricting exercise to avoid sweating which can lower your body temperature; drinking plenty of warm fluids and eat meals of protein which help generate heat for the body core.

Other winter rules have to do with safety such as remembering that fires and open flames consume oxygen and produce carbon monoxide; vehicles need extra traction on ice such as sand or salt or tire chains and studded tires; vehicles are poorly insulated places to take refuge in a storm except to get out of the wind if nothing else is available.

Otherwise, winter is a grand place to have fun and enjoy the quieter peaceful side of life. Campgrounds are near empty or are long abandoned in the winter so crowds are the least of your worries.

Remember to equip your vehicle with winter preparations and extra blankets and clothes for changes of clothing, add extra food, especially cheese and chocolate and meat snacks.

Make sure you only travel on well traveled roads unless you let others know in advance of your itinerary where you are going off road or are planning to take less traveled roads so they know the area you are in and the estimated time you are due back so they can call out the calvary when you fail to show up back home within three hours of your travel plans.

Once you have learned the basic rules of winter, you extend your seasons for being outdoors to year round, instead of hibernating inside your house at home. There is lots to do and lots to see in the winter that you can not find in other seasons so enjoy the adventure.

I just came back from the Lewis River Falls recreation area last week. In the back country I saw two other people and only three vehicles on Thursday which was a very cold day but beautiful. While out we saw some elk and a few small critters, and saw waterfalls and streams that were just simply beautiful. We had the views to ourselves. It was very refreshing to be out and about in the back country. Our state is very beautiful.

I am thankful for living in Washington State. The seasons bring colors and ice-cycles and snow and different views not available when the foliage is on the trees.

We were very prepared with extra food, clothing, a zero degree sleeping bag and both rain and wind protection for just in cases. We had a great time. We did not have to worry about our safety because we were prepared for anything. That saying is true, "if ye are prepared, ye shall not fear."


J Rawles

I was reading today on SurvivalBlog.com (http://www.survivalblog.com/) It’s always nice to read Rawles and his information. He is like us a prepper and a survivalist but he is also a Pioneer.

Today I read about a man: Minnesota man arrested for trespassing on his own land and just can understand it.

People: You need to prep and get ready for hard times. This is why we have this blog and the American Preppers Network as well as Pioneer Living (http://pioneerliving.net)

I hope all is safe and well for the holidays and I hope America will return to the once great nation it was.

John Milandred
Washington Preppers Network Est. Jan 17, 2009 All contributed articles owned and protected by their respective authors and protected by their copyright. Washington Preppers Network is a trademark protected by American Preppers Network Inc. All rights reserved. No content or articles may be reproduced without explicit written permission.