"Today’s political leaders demonstrate their low opinion of the public with every social law they pass. They believe that, if given the right to chose, the citizenry will probably make the wrong choice. Legislators do not think any more in terms of persuading people; they feel the need to force their agenda on the public at the point of a bayonet and the barrel of a gun." ~ Mark Skousen
Bugging Out: Screw Society and Save Yourself
Column by Alex R. Knight III.
Exclusive to STR
No one can seriously deny that there’s a lot of unrest out there lately.
And it’s coming from an increasingly diverse number of directions.
Tom Woods even recently penned an essay in which he posits that American society has arrived at a place in which it has become time to admit that “the differences are irreconcilable,” and he advises we all prepare to go our separate ways.
It may well be time to conclude that -- between the powers that shouldn’t be, and an endlessly quarreling public ever fighting for support and control of those powers – long before any voluntaryist vision prevails en masse, society itself may simply dissolve into chaos. In other words, people may well just decide that, in effect, suicide is easier than changing. The dollar may also collapse. World War Three could take wings. Any number of other scenarios might arise in such a witch’s brew of discord, fear, fighting, infighting, and reckless printing of currency out of thin air under a burden of over $20 trillion of government debt.
If so, then so be it. That’s their choice. The choice of so many blind statists and societal livestock. But it’s not mine. And it doesn’t have to be yours, either.
I recently prepared for myself, at very little cost (in fact, I already had most of the contents laying around the house), a “bug-out” bag designed to be both lightweight and minimalistic, yet provide the best chances of either short or long-term survival in the wild and/or on the run.
I started with a CVLIFE 50L woodland camo military tactical backpack, currently available for about $40-50, and outfitted it with the following gear and supplies. They are listed in no particular order, and in some cases I’ve included brand names either for frame of reference, or because I feel they offer a superior product for a decent price.
* Henry AR-7 Survival Rifle with three 8-round magazines (loaded)
* 26 additional rounds Remington .22 LR hollow-point 36 grain ammo
* Hatchet with blade cover
* Swiss Army Knife with can and bottle openers
* Deerslayer buck knife with belt holster
* Rogue River Woodland camo folding rescue knife
* One roll toilet paper
* Colgate toothbrush
* Colgate toothpaste (small)
* Spool of dental tape (heavy-gauge floss)
* Two disposable twin-blade shaving razors
* Lifestraw personal water filter
* Small Crayola pencil sharpener
* Small pointed wooden dowel
* Small notepad
* Small sharpened pencil with eraser
* 1-gallon plastic slider freezer bags
* Clutch of Diamond/Ohio Blue Tip wooden matches with striker strip
* Butane cigarette lighter with adjustable flame
* 3 bio-degradable eating forks
* Pair of 7 X 35 binoculars with lens covers and soft case
* Woodland camo LED flashlight with batteries
* 3 extra AAA Duracell batteries
* 1 small bottle dish soap
* 1 small pump spray bottle Deep Woods Off bug repellent
* Small plastic shell magnetic compass
* 2 drab green military surplus canteens
* 100’ nylon rope
* 2 small Sterno emergency 9-hour candles
* 1 small translucent watertight film canister
* Small Johnson & Johnson first aid kit
* 1 small non-stick frying pan
* 1 small aluminum eating/cooking dish
* Vigilant Trails emergency fishing kit
* 1 jumbo-sized bag Jack Link’s beef jerky
* 1 can Hormel beef chili with beans
* 2 cans Star*Kist solid white albacore tuna in water
* 5 extra rounds Winchester 125 grain .38 hollow-point ammo
Carried separately outside:
* Taurus 85 .38 revolver (loaded) with Fobus standard carry belt/pocket holster
Of course, there is certainly room for this list to be adjusted, modified, or added to (though it is best to keep pack weight under 30 pounds at all times). It is also possible to bring additional unpacked items (as witness the Taurus 85 above), such as a heavier caliber rifle, silver and gold coin, a rain poncho and/or rolled sleeping bag. But remember: The goal is not luxury, nor is it meeting an enemy on a battlefield armed to the nines. The goal is strictly survival. Travelling light. Staying out of sight. Eating and drinking. Escaping and evading, perhaps. Maybe seeking rescue. Staying warm. Keeping your head down. Staying alive.
Many of the items were selected with a view towards their potential multiple purposes. For example, the dental tape is not only useful for care of teeth, but also for twine, fishing line, or makeshift bootlaces. The small pencil sharpener and dowel may be used to produce shavings for dry fire kindling (the sharpener can also be used for the same purpose with small twigs). The minimal cardboard packaging on several items can be burned. The bug repellant is flammable. The shaving razors provide an alternative cutting instrument. Empty cans may be used for additional cooking, or gathering water.
I keep my backpack loaded up and ready to grab at a moment’s notice. Often, I just throw it on my back and go for long hikes in the woods with my dog. It’s good exercise, and good practice.
Perhaps I’ll never need a “bug-out” bag, and the problems will resolve themselves. But either way, I’m certainly not going to rely on a statist, illibertarian society that has all but conclusively proven they are capable only of creating and exacerbating problems for any answers.
Meantime, the ability to “bug-out” at will is a darned good personal insurance policy. Build one of your own as soon as you can, and be ready.