I'm scared - what can I do?

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Nime's picture
Nime
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I'm scared - what can I do?

I'm seriously scared. I've watched the Crash Course and at first I was very very angry at Chris for not only publishing this all but also earning from it through paid subscriptions. But I did my homework, checked here and there, and most of the image painted in the Crash Course is true. Now I'm really scared. 

Now the only positive idea here seems to be to move to the countryside and start growing your own food and harvesting your own energy. I don't feel I'm able to do this.  

I live in a city.I don't own a piece of arable land. I'm an IT project manager, previously I was a programmer.  I don't know anything about agriculture - in fact no one in my family was a farmer for the last 5 generations or so (earlier records don't exist). I not only don't like the idea of giving up all I know and I'm good at for something that I can associate only with poverty - I just don't see how would I even go about it. All my knowledge, experience and intellect are worth anything only as long as there is IT. "Out there" they are all worthless and I'm not very good at physical labor - never was. On the other hand I can't refute high possibility that those who won't be high enough in society or independent might simply perish.  

So, what can I do? How can I protect my family? I ask this question over and over again, just like suggested in the course, but I don't have any real ideas what I could do. In fact I feel it might be already too late - I wish I was more interested in all of this three-four years later, but I was too busy working and getting my life together after a failed marriage etc. Now that I finally did it the world seems to be just failing apart. Sometimes I wish I remained ignorant - at least I would be able to sleep well at night.

Any real ideas from people who were in similar position?

(sorry for being this personal, but really I have no one to ask) 

Headless's picture
Headless
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Nime,

There is one solution to this; it will never happen: Take back the wealth and put it back into circulation.

 Even that would not stop what's about to happen in America.

This whole problem is result of the concentration of wealth in the hands of the few; that kind of money is less than useless, it's dangerous--as has been proven.

 

 

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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Nime,

Sorry for your state of anxiety.  At least you are addressing the issues.  That is good.  There are many here to help you more knowledgeable and eloqouent than I.  However, I would say these things. 

Don't diminish the importance of providing for your own sustenance by associating it with poverty.  It is a source of pride for me to be independent of some of the "systems" we take for granted.

Try not to be overwhelmed (I am, as well, some days).  Learn and then prioritize your plan of action.  If you feel it necessary, take dramatic action - moving, career change, etc.  If you were smart enough to learn your IT skills, you can learn skills necessary to take whatever action you deem necessary.  Any level of preparedness you attain will alleviate some of your anxiety. 

Seek out like minded people in your area.  I know that may be difficult.  Trust me, we are all accustomed to the typical responses you will receive when sharing your concerns.

You say you are not very good at physical labor.  Is that by choice or physical limitation?  What level of physical labor?

For me, it is never "too late".

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caroline_culbert
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Nime,

Part of the problems we face as a nation is those of people who are extremely specialized in their field.  That type of specialization, obviously, has it's good and bad points.  But, even in a world of trade and barter we would still be specialized--and that's a good thing as long as their is demand for it.  For example if there was a cobbler and for some reason the need for shoes disappeared then the cobbler would need to find something else to earn.  Luckily, the "end of shoes" scenario doesn't generally happen overnight.  There are usually indications pointing to the demise of someone's job.

Your job right now is to calculate the probability of, exactly, what might happen and to find out what your options are.

For example you might look at your finances, esp. if you feel your employment will be severed, and draw up possible scenarios.  If this happens, and I've been doing this, then I will do this... Draw out several different things that could happen.  Start from the least to the most severe (like losing your home--in the worst case scenario).

During this time you might want read up a little more.  Reading this website and books takes up a lot of time.  This will aslo require that you sacrifice other hobbies (maybe watching tv or etc.) to understand "how" to do something.  Learning how to garden isn't something you know, intrinsically.  Learning how to garden, or do almost anything, requires research and learning.  Sometimes it's easier to learn from others, rather than a book, how to do 'x'.  I've met up with friends to find tons of information on gardening, composting, and etc.  BUT, I still have my part-time day job and I learn a little bit more every day. 

Just start on what you'd really like to know about or what interests you.  You may want to find out more info about history (reading) or learn about current (financial)events (NY-Times, WallStreetJournal, Mish's, FinancialTimes, etc.)  You can get so many recommendations from people on Chris' site.  You're not going to find out everyone in one day.  In your free time, first draw up possible scenarios that might happen (with your job).  Then if you're interested in what you can do, to better the future, is up.

I don't think IT will go away, completely during or after the recession/depression.  In fact, one of Obama's main concern is improving IT in the medical field (you might want to follow some of his ideas on his website).  Necessary (as in improvement for society at large) IT is in high demand but a lot of technology is just a waste of time/resources that will not do anything to improve that chaotic mess we're in.  There is so much technology needed and unfortunately much of it will be hung up in Washington; but like I said Obama might make some progress in eliminating waste and making things more efficient.

Nime's picture
Nime
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

MarkM: thanks for your answer!

To answer first some of the questions: I'm not disabled or anything, I'm just not very resistant to stuff like cold (get sick pretty easy) and not very strong physically - that's the way I'm built.

Seeking likely minded people... hm... you see, it is not that easy.  First, most believe things will ease out somehow. Plus there is lots of hope in the air that maybe we'll be somehow magically spared and just US will be hit hard by the crisis (which I think is pure BS, if a strong, huge country will be hit hard, then 32rd by population, developing economy is likely to be hit even harder if a bit later). But most importantly - I own a business (a software company), I can't be seen panicking or packing or doing anything like it, because well... people that work for me would freak out.

In my position, as I've mentioned, I see little I could do. To move I'd have to sell my business that is still doing quite well. Let's suppose I find someone with enough faith that everything will turn out ok to buy it. What would I do? Move? Now - where to move? What do there? Does it even make any sense? What if somehow it will work out without war and famine and the world will just roll ahead? 

I feel like we're doomed if we stay - but our lives will be shattered if we move. I think that boils it down pretty well - there are no good exits from where we find ourselves now. Not for us at least, middle-class people, with relatively little savings but (luckily!) no debt. Very rich will probably manage to weather this storm all right. So will thugs and others who will be able to get by force what they will need. 

BTW - what did you do? You say you're now quite independent and it is a source of pride for you. Share - what did you achieve? 

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Aaron M
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Nime,

Maybe you should share the crash course with your employees.
Not only would that generate interest, but it'd educate them to the challenges being face, and could improve morale.

Humans are social animals, afterall.

Buy a Pistol, Rifle and several hundred rounds for each.
Then take a class. If you can't defend yourself, no other skills will matter. At all. Others might disagree with me, but I've seen the dredges of society, and they'll think nothing of leaving you bleeding in a gutter and making off with your food supplies.

Don't move if you don't have to. Put that on the back burner. Think about what you can do immediately. Think about what you will do immediately if we were to have an "Argentina" style collapse.

Start small, and grow. Get planter boxes in your windows.
I know a guy who has less than a quarter acre, and he pulls so much food off it that it's absolutely astounding.
Get the experience now, collect rainwater and graywater in 55gal drums, and use them to irrigate whatever land you have.

Get seeds planted now! The learning curve is steep.

Take your extra money and put it towards extra food, water and medical supplies.

Go every other day to the gym. Swim, and do body weight resistance exercises.
Pushups, sit-ups, pullups and running. If you can't - don't give up. Set goals for yourself, and continually improve. "Not physically strong" is a transitory state between weak and progress.
Make progress, not excuses!

When the cards fall, anxiety and panic won't do you any good. Be calm, you've got the upper hand.
Must people still believe Brit Hume that things are fine and will get better.

Be mentally prepared. Think about dying and calamity until it doesn't scare you anymore. Become comfortable with your own mortality, and use it to strengthen your resolve.

And finally - never waste a second. Read, stay fit, and continually improve.

Cheers!

Aaron

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MarkM
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Nime,

What country are you in?  Size of city?

You can find like minded people close to you.  You don't have to scare those at work to find out if they are on the same page.  I look at "emergency preparedness" as encompassing many eventualities, not just a possible economic disaster. 

Like you, I am a business owner.  My employees have a little knowledge about my concern for the future.  They just think I am little "crazy".  They do use the line, "We'll just come to your house."  To which I reply, "You'd better keep your head down."  Because of my employer status I am staying in place, a suburb of the D/FW Texas area.  I feel a need to keep my employees employed and I don't want to leave my business of 26 years...yet.   True, if things were to really get bad it might be too late to leave.

I have a couple of acres with a well, a large pond and a large area for gardening.  It has been a long time since I gardened, but I have started on this years and I still enjoy the endeavor.  What else have I done?  I have been building a store of food for about 8 months now.  My wife thinks I am a little crazy, like my employees do.  However, she won't have to keep her head down when approaching the house. I think I could get by for about 4 months without having to leave the house.  I am far from being systems independent.  However, I am a lot more prepared than I was a year ago and I have more peace because of it.  I am a strong supporter of the Constitution including the Second Amendment.  Therefore, I have made provisions in that area as well.

You have no debt?  Relish the freedom of that situation.  I, too, am debt free and it is a liberating feeling.

Ready's picture
Ready
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Nime,

 You are EXACTLY where I was 2 years ago. I too own my business in the IT field, and was knocked off my feet when I came to the realizations you are now undergoing. Fear is a normal part of the process, and there are a number of discussions on the board here about the 6 stages. The good news is that even though you feel like a deer in the headlights, you now have the ability to think things through and prepare yourself.

 I started with making biodiesel from waste vegetable oil to run in my truck 2 years ago. At the time, diesel was nearing $5.00 / gallon and my employees became intrigued with what I was doing, and some even began to participate. I then purchased an 86 acre plot that I initially called the hunting lodge. It has since been renamed the farm, but it is a place we initially used for recreation more than doom and gloom preparations. I still to this day have my primary residence, my company, employees, kids in the same school, etc but I am spending more and more time as I can at the farm, "getting ready". Depending on your financial situation, a plot of land separate from your primary dwelling may be an option for you too. Best of both worlds if you can swing it.

Some of the preparations I have made are related to energy, i.e. solar, wind, biodiesel backup generator, etc. These things are very difficult to implement in the subdivision arrangement, so all of this is at the farm. This year I am growing Canola (for the first time, and I have no idea what I am doing either, but I'll figure it out!) so I can replace the waste vegetable oil as my feedstock in making biodiesel and become more energy self reliant.

Other preparations have to do with food and shelter. Buying in bulk at Costco and learning how to prepare foods that don't come in a box or go into the microwave was a big deal for us with 2 boys who live to snack. We are working to obtain and maintain a rolling 18 months worth of food. Shelter is broken down in my mind to the obvious roof over your head, which I assume you have, the ability to bring in and get rid of water, the ability to heat and cool. Making yourself as self reliant in these areas is important, and may not be overly taxing depending on your situation. For example, do you have a wood burning stove, or a good place to put one?

A more simple and direct preparation that you could make today that might set your mind at ease a bit would be to buy some gold. I won't go on as to all the whys here because it is all over the site and posted by folks far smarter economically than I (we are IT guys after all) but it is a weight off the shoulders to know you will not loose everything you have in the bank if the worst case scenario was to happen tomorrow (it won't, you still have time!).

 As far as the job and employees, I have slowly eased them through what I am doing, and answered questions the way I think Chris would, without blaming or trying to scare folks, just giving truthful answers with a ray of hope at the end. Generally, folks here "get it" and I feel much better having played a part in their ongoing safety. This week, one of my guys sold a Ford Mustang he had completely restored (beautiful car!) and he asked me what to do with the money. He wants to buy a house, but knew something was wrong with that decision in his gut. Instead, he took 1/4 and bought gold, 1/4 and converted it to cash, and the other 1/2 went to get out of debt. Smart kid whose actions would have been different if I had kept my understanding of the crash course to myself.

This site is an awesome resource for you to pick through and see what is best for your situation. All I can say to you is that you are not alone, and I had never farmed, sat on a tractor, split wood, distilled, made my own fuel, composted, etc. etc. etc. either, but I do now and even though I am not the most physical guy either, I tend to see these things as a labor of love because I am providing a safe haven for the most important people in my little world.

I wish you the best over the next few months. Looking back at my first 2 months, they were definitely the most exciting! Take some time to think things through and prepare yourself to the best of your abilities whether you stay home or move, and you will hopefully feel a sense of calm over you as I have.

 Good luck,

Roger

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Aaron M
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Roger,

This is asking a lot - but would you mind doing a thread on making bio-diesel?
Maybe go over some of the processes, equipment and lessons learned?

Ready's picture
Ready
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Yup, I love to talk about that stuff. On the small scale when self reliance is the goal, it makes far more sense than the crash course would have you believe. It compares biodiesel to oil as a replacement for the entire US, and it isn't overly favorable in that sense. One the small scale, however, it's just the thing!

 I'll put something together tonight when I have a little more time.

 Rog

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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Hello Nime,

I've been reading this site for a few months now and it is only reasantly that I wrote on a thread to someone who had worries of foreclosure on their home. I wrote on that thread that this was the begining of a change with the subject matter here, from the bigger picture and the banking issues to more personal and individual fears. You are now proof.

I've emigrated from England and bought a farm in Hungary. This was my choice and I don't want to confuse you into thinking that my choice was the only answer, because it isn't. For me it suited 'my' choices and nothing more.

I've swatted up on a great deal and also have the backing of a father-in-law who's been a farmer all his life; plus he gets his daughter back in the country she originates from after a 10 year absense.

I've been flicking through and finding useful information from a writer called :-

Cody Lundin - When All Hell Breaks Loose (Link :-)

http://www.amazon.com/When-All-Hell-Breaks-Loose/dp/142360105X

He can be found on You Tube here :-

I really loath the lady presenter at the begining of this...(Sorry)...

...the devil is in the detail and, if a little unorthodox, makes interesting reading and watching. He actually lives in a house he designed and built himself that is fully self contained with gadgets and gismo's that make the mind boggle.

The main things that relate to you are the specifics that are different with everyone. I have a wood burning stove and plenty of fire wood. Thats great for me but useless for you if you live in an apartment block on the middle floors.

I have a well for fresh water so I'm not going to concern myself that utilities like this are going to stop but, in a city, these are possibilities.

I loath scaremongering and scaremongerers yet, gaining practical advise from people in the know will be a godsend to you and, a little more reality than assuming everything is going to be just fine is the direction I wish to send you in.

I have to say one important thing. BREATH!! You're going to do you and the world around you a great deal of good if you stay as calm as you can. Worrying a worrier is going to burden them beyond their sanity and likewise, children need calm and routine to keep them together.

I know I've had more time to think through my options but I feel you still have plenty of time to put together a plan A,B and C together. You've done two of the best possible things you could have done to gain a perspective on your future. You've stumbled upon the Crash Course and understood it and, you've written ths thread so that a cross section of people here can help you in the only way they know how.

My last link is one I've directed others to on one of my own threads and this is one that Chris Martenson wrote on the 8th of October last year :-

The Six Stages Of Awareness

http://www.peakprosperity.com/page/six-stage-awareness

In the next couple of days, with all the interest generated from this thread, I think you'll have many tools generated to help you deal with things better.

Take Care,

Paul

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ckessel
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Nime,

Getting into action at all is the key. I recommend doing chapter 20 with your spouse/ family etc. and start with something that is easy to do. Then add 1 thing each day/week etc. 

I agree with Aaron that action is definately needed now. You will need to assess relative importances based on your location/ environment.

I would think that your IT experience would be in high demand, Look for areas where you can apply what you know and trade with those that know what you don't.

Coop

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Arthur Vibert
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Nime -

There will still be cities. There will still be corporations. There will still be computers and a need for IT. PErhaps not as much as there is currently, but there will be. I think it's unlikely (not impossible, mind you) that we will be reduced to a blasted landscape of hardscrabble farmers fighting off the heavily armed thieves and bandits that come for our food and women, sometimes called the "Mad Max" scenario. But in desperate times people get desperate and it does make sense to be prepared to protect yourself.

The thing is, I don't think anyone can do this alone. The American myth of the "rugged individualist" is great when we are all doing relatively well, but when the bottom starts to drop out of things a little (or a lot) of mutual support becomes important. Family, friends, neighbors are all important. You don't have to drop the entire Crash Course on them because you will surely alienate them if they are not ready for it. Introduce some of the concepts gently - see if they're receptive. If they are you can give them some more, if not drop it - but don't drop them! Eventually most will be ready to listen.

You can't do everything. Know what your strengths are. People who can really use their minds will be vitally important. It's also important to know what your weaknesses are. Not strong? You'll probably never be Arnold but you can get fit, which will be important if and when what passes for health care (or as Charles Hugh Smith calls it, "sick care") in this country breaks down. Find people with complimentary skills. How do you find people? Volunteer in your area at food banks, CSAs, etc. People who see what is happening and are doing something about it are likely to be at these places. Therre are also quite a few Tranistion Town initiatives. See if you can find one in your area to be a part of.

The most important thing to remember is that fear is your enemy. We become fearful when we are overwhelmed by what we perceive as an insurmountable challenge to our existence. The key to overcoming fear is action. You can't address every issue at once, so establish priorities and attack them as you can. I think a supply of food staples would be a good place to start. 

My wife thought I was nuts when I first started discussing this stuff with her at the beginning of last year. Most of our conversations involved lots of eye rolling on her part. But I knew that I had gotten through to her when she arrived home one Saturday from a shopping trip to Costco with food storage containers and enough staples to feed an army.

Arthur 

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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Mime,

It is shocking to learn that there isn't a Santa Klaus, but you recongnise that you are one of the lucky ones; I always feel sorry for those that look at me like I have two heads when I discuss these types of things.

For the fuure, your best asset is knowledge and skills and now is the time to learn and educate your family.  I make these things fun for the family.  Growing food in the garden with small kids teaches them some valuable lessons without them realising.  As dos walking in the countryside and observing the flora and fauna.  

Many folks won't learn until it is too too late and so you are already at an avantage.  Small steps taken now and until the big day will pay huge dividends.

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capesurvivor
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Hi Nime,

I am in a somewhat similar position, mainly due to a wife who thinks this site and Chris are crazy doomsayers. In truth, I am not going to be a subsistence farmer/animal husbander anyway, even if possible, at 60, with various medical problems and no background and, in truth, minimal interest. I have resolved to carefully explore local options...a nearby CSA, consider showing the Crash course after I return from Rowe to try to meet similar locals, and..my term, survive-in-place. There are lots of us who can't or won't make major life changes right now. You can acquire:

1.knowledge. Download Chris' free self assessment pages; they'll give you lots of ideas. Buy used books in a variety of practical areas;you can see what's good first at the library or various websites.

2. buy a shotgun/rifle/pistol, some ammo,and join a range. You never know if you'll need those skills.

3. ease out of the stock market if you can without too many losses (LOL) and buy some gold/gold stocks. Keep some cash available.

4. get out of debt, keep your successful business as long as it makes money, and follow the current deflation, probable future inflation scenarios carefully

5.  Store a bit of non-perishable food.

6. Sniff around carefully for like-minded folks who could be allies in a tough situation.

7. as noted, try to keep fit.

8. don't get overwhelmed; no one really has the future predicted. You just want to increase your peace of mind and stack the deck somewhat more in your favor.

Others in this site have other suggestions, no doubt; These are spontaneous thought from a survivor-in-place.

 

SG

 

 

 

 

 

.'s picture
.
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Hi Nime,

  Don't fret about the future, it won't do any good.  The govenrment (at the highest levels only) has known this was comming for quite some time.  The CIA was well aware of the implications of Peak Oil as early as 1974.  There will be chaos in the early stages and it will get ugly, but the people who think that they can escape to the hills and live off of the land are sadly mistaken (FLIR imaging can flush out those who think they can hide).  As recently as October Northcom has been stationing troops here in the US for "disaster" assistance.  They started with 1000 troops and in January they increased it to 20,000 battle hardened troops strait from Iraq.  The trouble makers will be rounded up and sent to the FEMA detention camps and those who do comply will be reduced to a life of rations and poverty stuck in crime ridden reminants of our cities.  Stock up on canned goods, buy a few guns to protect your foodstock and be mentally prepared.  Its only a matter of time now.

 Just kidding.  The DOW will be 15,000 by October, everyone will have a new car and the weather will be sunny and 75 degrees every day.

Ready's picture
Ready
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Sounds like worker is having a bad day...

 If FEAM had any power whatsoever to pull off what you suggest, New Orleans / Katrina might be a slightly different story.

 Not every aspect of what we are going through is a conspiracy! It does have the potential to get mean, and it only makes sense to make the appropriate preparations like Arron suggests. I can only hope worker bee is only joking in the apparent suggestion that you should just give up now because the Nazis are coming.

Vanityfox451's picture
Vanityfox451
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Hi Eddy,

I think Workerbee is adding a little Irony to the thread ;) If you read through it again (even the one I've written up there) it does seem to be getting a little fraught? This is a horrible time we're slowly moving toward; so much uncertainty and guess-work as to what is coming next. It would be nice sometimes if I could switch off and forget that I know so much of what is happening, like the vast majority who are finally starting to see the signs...

Take Care,

Paul

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mc
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Nime,

It is important that you have faced the problem and admit you are scared. I started this process about 3 years ago when I realized something was very wrong and that I did not believe our govt about 9/11 and this war on terror. At that time, I thought peak oil was real and not an engineered shortage which I now think is the case. So, I was overwhelmed by all of this and felt like crawling under the blanket forever. I read about collapse until I could not think straight. And then I decided to take what steps I could take not having much money but a modest home (pd for) and a couple of acres. This is what I did-

1. cleared out of investments

2. bought some gold and silver

3.  bought dehydrated food for us - about 5 yrs worth

4.stocked up on clothing and shoes and boots

5.stocked up on horse supplies and water heaters for the next 6 years or so

6.  stocked up on heritage seeds

7. we have a well but it needs power - so got a generator that will run the pump if necessary

8. bought a pellet stove (no longer use the elec furnace) and a 4 yr supply of pellets stored in our buly barn

9. bought books on gardening and first aid and fix it items and first aid supplies

10. we have guns but we stocked up on ammo

11. stocked up on commonly used items such as toiletries, aspirin, toilet paper, shampoo, etc.

12. stocked up on one-a-day vitamins

13. purchased an extra freezer for various beans, rice, and meat

14. went from 3 vehicles to one

15. contemplate my death - sounds crazy but helps me keep my perspective - this is temporary after all-

So, is it enough in event of collapse??? No - We cannot do enough in that case. And no one knows how this will develop, but I think this system is now failing and this govt. is not to be relied upon.

For me the most important step was deciding not to hide under the blanket and I started researching online such as Chris Martenson and Fintan Dunne and Meria. And through books about the world and our country - and reading authors such as Des Griffin and David McGowan and David Yallop and Wm.Cooper. I want to know from those who do dare call it treason. Because once I decided not to cave into fear, I knew I wanted to know what the hell has been going on for the past couple of centuries and what has brought us to this point. I have gone off on some false paths, read the works of some jokers but I am learning and I eventually sort out the charlatans. I have tried to share some info with others, but most are too frightened to be open to what is more and more obvious. Yet, It is an exciting time to be alive and to learn. Best Wishes to you and to all of us.

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jrf29
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Dear Nime,

Well, it sounds like you have to deal with your fear first.  Sometimes concern is a good thing; it helps to motivate you and spur you to action.  Concern over certain unfavorable outcomes is probably behind much of what we do as humans.  But if you are so scared that you can't sleep well at night, that means that your fear has grown to the point where it is damaging and counterproductive.  In order for human fear to grow to that level, where it interferes with your physical functioning, it means that you are not looking at things in the right perspective.

Freedom from fear comes from accepting the world as it is.  Know that there are some things which you cannot control, and focus exclusively on what you can control.  Once you become comfortable with all of the possible outcomes of the situation, you will be more comfortable making decisons.

Myself, for example, I can't say that I'm particularly worried about starving to death.  And that's the absolute worst outcome I can think of.  I know I'm not getting off this planet alive one way or the other, and life is short no matter what age I die at.  Starvation isn't even a particularly unpleasant way to die.  I can certainly think of worse.  Hey, they can only kill you once.

Frankly, once I am reasonably comfortable with the worst possible outcome, there's not much that can happen that really worries me.  Certainly nothing that keeps me awake at night.  Actually, come to think of it, I think I'd rather starve to death than die of a lot of other things, like bone cancer, or Alzheimer's disease.... but I digress.  Would I like to avoid the worst possible outcome?  Yes.  There's a lot in life with which I am concerned, and I will take all reasonable and prudent actions to avoid what I consider to be undesirable outcomes.  But my actions are not driven by terror.  Neither should yours: it's unhealthy.

So don't worry about the outcome of the crisis.  You can't control that, and worrying about it only wastes your energy and makes you a less effective decision-maker.  Worry about what you can do.

Your life is a ship.  It can only turn so fast.  If you are the captain of that ship, and you see an iceberg dead ahead, there is a prescribed set of actions which you can take.  You can set engines to reverse full, turn the wheel as far as it will go, and order the watertight compartment doors closed.  Those actions being done, sitting on the bridge and biting your fingernails hoping that the ship would turn faster, or reproofing yourself for not having acted sooner, is silly. Those types of thoughts only further interfere with your rational functioning.  The ship turns as fast as it turns, and that's the way it is.

Now: your life.  What should you do?  The first thing: don't make hasty, ill-considered decisions.  Worry can make you do those kinds of things.  Stop.  Think.  Read.  Form a plan.  Take a few weeks just thinking about the problem. If a crisis is so close at hand that you can't even take a few weeks, then you won't have enough time anyway.  So take your time to stop and think.  See that you make rational decisions before you act.

Now, you say you're an IT guy.  Well, form a plan for gradually broadening that.  Develop some new skills. Learn how to garden.  Move to a place where land is available, and then build your local community connections (most important). Start transferring your wealth into valuble commodities, if you think a currency crisis is possible.  Come up with a plan.  Learn to be more self-sufficient in a thousand small ways.  Reduce your expeses.  Reduce your secured debt.  Learn to buy sturdy things that can be reused or fixed.  Get a house with a wood stove.  There will always be more to do to prepare for any eventuality in life, and it might take years to change your life.  It might take more. That's the amount of time that it takes to turn your ship of life onto a new course.  But do not worry about that.  Simply focus on what you can do, and content yourself that you are doing everything you can that is prudent.  And conquer your fear.

 

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Ready
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?
Worker Bee wrote:

Hi Nime,

  Don't fret about the future, it won't do any good.  The govenrment (at the highest levels only) has known this was comming for quite some time.  The CIA was well aware of the implications of Peak Oil as early as 1974.  There will be chaos in the early stages and it will get ugly, but the people who think that they can escape to the hills and live off of the land are sadly mistaken (FLIR imaging can flush out those who think they can hide).  As recently as October Northcom has been stationing troops here in the US for "disaster" assistance.  They started with 1000 troops and in January they increased it to 20,000 battle hardened troops strait from Iraq.  The trouble makers will be rounded up and sent to the FEMA detention camps and those who do comply will be reduced to a life of rations and poverty stuck in crime ridden reminants of our cities.  Stock up on canned goods, buy a few guns to protect your foodstock and be mentally prepared.  Its only a matter of time now.

 Just kidding.  The DOW will be 15,000 by October, everyone will have a new car and the weather will be sunny and 75 degrees every day.

 

OK Worker Bee. I just read this thread:

http://www.peakprosperity.com/comment/14385#comment-14385

and you have clearly got me fooled. So what do you really think lies ahead and on what timeframe?

Just curious

Rog

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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Hi Nime,

I'm scared too at times but I refuse to buy guns and defend my house and a tiny supply of food. I am a farmer already so that helps my state of mind but mostly I have been talking to like minded people and have gotten involved in the Transition Town movement. I will help provide for everyone or go down trying.

Rob Hopkins, who started TT says, "It is possible that life with less energy will be better."  Check out his talks on youtube. I find it helpful.  Get to know your neighbors.  Join a CSA (ok, that's self serving, I run one)  Smile   Share what you are thinking about with others. It is through relationships that we will find our greatest strength. I choose to believe that to have hope. I am not too optimistic but know from experience that this is true.

Keep learning and reading. Sharon Astyk, Depletion and Abundance is great.

Keep checking in here with us too.

 Kate

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Damnthematrix
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Nime,

I can only guess at how you feel.  I found out about this mess years ago, and even though everything was still OK then, I got really depressed.

HOWEVER, just because you've never been involved in 'agriculture' doesn't mean you can't change.  I was a Professional Photographer before now, and there's no way I'd go back.

Poerty, BTW, is what you make of it.  I've gone from being a high flyer photographer with a flash car and all the best equipment money could buy, to no car and 1.5 acres with a garden, fruit trees, and ducks chickens and goats....  It can be done!  Even better, I feel richer than ever on far less money.  Money is NOT wealth.  You'd be surprised how meaningful a so called poorer life can be.. 

I think the first thing you need to do is acknowledge you have to change.  Once you become accustomed to the idea, you CAN change.  It might be a good idea to watch chapter 20 of the CC a few times....

Find some books on Permaculture, and study them, find a local permie group, they're everywhere.  Also search this site's engine for the word permaculture. 

Good luck, stay in touch, I'm sure lots of people here can help you get through this.

Mike (in Australia BTW...) 

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Damnthematrix
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

"I think it's unlikely (not impossible, mind you) that we will be
reduced to a blasted landscape of hardscrabble farmers fighting off the
heavily armed thieves and bandits that come for our food and women,
sometimes called the "Mad Max" scenario. But in desperate times people
get desperate and it does make sense to be prepared to protect yourself."

I just posted this exerpt from an interview of a Cuban Permaclturist:

 

ECO: Considering the differences in our political structures, can the Cuban example of urban permaculture be used here in Australia?

Roberto: I think that the differences are within how the community is structured.  Our society is deeply community-based
and the components of our society, with African, Cantonese, Spanish and
a little bit of French influence — Cuba is deeply community-based.
People rely on each other and that was something that really helped us
to resist the worst of the crisis.  There were no riots. There was
hunger, nutritional defects, but there were no droughts.  The response
was ordered.  I think one of the biggest differences was that our
society was not based on the individual.  So that makes the scenario
more contentious. People in your society will need to learn to share.

This sort of attitude, I have found, is much more prevalent in the country than in cities...  Don't panic just yet....

Mike 

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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Hi Rog,

    What lies ahead and on what time frame?

I wish I knew.  I am only trying to prepare for the worst and hope for the best.  At times I think I'm going crazy.   If you read the other thread then you know a little of my background. 

My "nutty survivalist" friend warned me years ago of that the world's elite wanted a one world government and would stop at nothing to achieve it.  He said the usual militia/survivalist/anti-government things all those groups say.  He told me that the Constitution and the Bill of Rights was slowly being eroded.  He told me to buy bag silver (in 1997) because the Federal Reserve Notes were just a worthless piece of paper backed by nothing.  He was planning his escape when the SHTF to Alaska because that was the one place in the world where food is plentiful enough to live off the land and the competition for it is sparse.  I thought he was crazy, but a little voice inside me told me he was right and I slowly started to obtain tools and increase my skills.

In 2004 I started to wonder why the mainstream media talking heads would so viciously attack the 9/11 Truth movement instead of just inviting them on there shows and shooting down their arguments in a calm setting.  I started to listen to their claims and reading the contridictions in the 9/11 commission report.  Then I started to read about things like "Operation Northwoods", the 1967 attack on the USS Liberty,  the KBR contract to build detention camps, The Creature from Jekyll Island, the list goes on and on.  This all started to make me believe what we are told and what is the truth are two very different things.  It also confirmed what my now "not so nutty survivalist" friend warned me about.

As far as your question goes, I'm starting to think it will play out as Gerald Celente predicts.  2009 will be a very, very hard year.  As he often says "when people have lost everything, they have nothing to lose."  Why would the Federal Government be making the preparations it is if it did not think things were going to get ugly or at least had the potential to?  When a state like California has to issue IOU's and other states unemployment funds are almost dry this means people are going to get desperate when they don't their money.  Arizona is training local law enforcement to be prepared for rioting and looting brought on from economic collapse.  I think state and fed actions speak volumes.  I really hope they are wrong.  I hope there are civilized solutions that come from all of this.

Be prepared food wise.  Your local supermarket can run out of food in a few short hours.  California is experiencing a severe drought that has a lot of farmers forgoing planting crops this year.  It could mean very high prices and perhaps shortages this coming summer and fall. 

 What I wrote earlier was in shear frustration of feeling helpless to the unfolding crisis.  At times I think I should just quit reading this stuff and hope for the best.  I'll plug my ears now and go "la la la la la".

 

 

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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?
Worker Bee wrote:

As far as your question goes, I'm starting to think it will play out as Gerald Celente predicts.  2009 will be a very, very hard year.  As he often says "when people have lost everything, they have nothing to lose."  Why would the Federal Government be making the preparations it is if it did not think things were going to get ugly or at least had the potential to?  When a state like California has to issue IOU's and other states unemployment funds are almost dry this means people are going to get desperate when they don't their money.  Arizona is training local law enforcement to be prepared for rioting and looting brought on from economic collapse.  I think state and fed actions speak volumes.  I really hope they are wrong.  I hope there are civilized solutions that come from all of this.

Worker Bee -

If there is a civilized solutions that can come from your worst-case scenarious, it will, IMO, require a return to the US Constitution, with respect to the "Power of the Purse" and the "Power of the Sword" (monetary and 2nd Amendment issues).  

The threat to our economic existence has been under assault, and America's economic precipuce has come, through it's adoption of an irredeemable, debt-based fiat currency, under the control of a private Bank running a fractional-reserve system.  

That was NOT the Constitutional monetary prescription, and the Founders warned incessantly what would happen under such a system. 

Sequential to the possibility of a monetary collapse -  in the event of societal chaos, and the possibility of martial law being imposed by distant "Federal" and "State" law enforcement agencies being used against the people, it should be kept in mind   -  

As originally designed by the Founders, the "Government", including the method of ensuring that law was civil and obeyed, is/was US - all we sovereign citizens ("sovereign", in as each his own King).   Further, the Founders felt that the security was to be ensured by a combination of all citizens, in concert and working with specialized law enforcement groups.  This was their definition of what comprised the "militia of the several states".

It was never intended that the general populus were NOT to be involved with "securing a free State" (their own), but instead, each individual citizen, to work in concert with local and state law enforcement, comprised and made up,  the "militia of the several states".  

The 2nd Amendment was specifically designed as a decentralized and local-to-bottom-up security system for individual freedom, and NOT a "top-down" Federally-imposed police state - they are diametrically opposed in intention.

Also note that "the militia"  was never considered to be  the standing military (today often referred to as National Guard, US Military, Homeland Security forces, etc)   - in Constitutional times, full-time soldiers were referred to as "Regulars", and were not "militia".   There is a ton of historical writing on this very matter.

However, today, the word "militia" has been lampooned as right-wing, tin-foil "crazies" at odds with the process of securing and governing of our country.     Consequently, almost all State Governors are actually in defiance of the US Constitution, which, in combination with Founders writings, prescribed them the responsibility of ensuring that "the militia of the several states" were in a constant state of readiness.   Of course, the concept was wiped aside and left to deteriorate.

Nothing could be further from what the Consitutional actually prescribed.

Today, those in government who are "at-odds" with Constitutional principles, who have been aware of the potential for monetary collapse for a LONG time, and are in control of a "top-down"political and martial oligarchy, with readiness to "impose" whatever version of law they may deem necessary, do NOT have the interests of the United States sovereign citizenry as a concern.

Note that, the 2nd Amendment was the only, of the Bill of Rights (first 10 Amendments of the Constitution), that gave an explicit reason why it was included and necessary -   to wit -  "a well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State (i.e, the "reason"), the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed. (the "right enumerated").  None of the other rights enumerated as Amendments state their reason for inclusion.   And this, because it was (when the SHTF), the most important.

One person who speaks with as much expertise and credentials as available on these issues, is Dr. Edwin Vieira.   He is a 4-degreed Harvard graduate PhD and Constitutional lawyer, having tried 4 cases before the US Supreme Court - winning 3, and is an expert on Constitutional matters, with particular focus on the Monetary Basis in the Constitution, and the 2nd Amendment.  His website is here:

http://edwinvieira.com/

He is currently working with State congressional bodies and law enforcement agencies, to see the revitalization of the true "militia of these several states", as was strictly prescribed by the Constitution.  

Why?

Because the Constitution put the 2nd Amendment in such esteem, so as to prevent a top-down "police state" from occuring - i.e., "for the security of a free state".     The rationale of the Founding Fathers applies equally under a scenario of a monetary collapse, as from insurrection, invasion or general lawlessness.   You can read Dr Vieira's rationale (some of it) below, and in his book:

http://www.newswithviews.com/Vieira/edwin187.htm

This activity is "something that can be done", before any such SHTF conditions.  

Your own State Congress can and should get involved, and the effort has been named after a similar function during the Founders times - i.e, The Committees of Safety, and can be found here:

http://www.committeesofsafety.org/

You can read his articles and books on the same, and I highly recommend them.  

He is often featured on many of Congressman Ron Paul's website links, and they have worked together on many forums, to return to sound money, and American prosperity.

His articles on Constitutional money and congressional action to push for a return to Constitutional forms of money is also being organized and is in the works (the State of Indiana recently pushed a bill for a gold-based payment system).

I agree - I hope there are civilized solutions which can come from this - and these are a start.

 

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mainecooncat
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Hi GDon. Great post.

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vvolf
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

Nime,

I understand completly what you are saying.  I am a carpenter by trade. For the last 12 years I have been in Northern Alberta working in the oilfields until last fall. After a long education in what was going on I left Alberta and came back to NW Ontario where I was closer to family, in a less populated area of the country, and now I am looking to surround myself with a few good friends who will be of some help in the times to come.  I have been excited one day and way down the next over all the information I have been taking in lately but a few things stand out from the non-crackpot blogs and websites.

  1. Educate yourself. Not just about finances but with life skills that can help you, and be of some value to others. One book I read that helped me understand whats going on was by James Kunstler- The Long Emergency & A world made by Hand.  I am reading what I can on a variety of subjects from Forest Gardening to Hunting to Cordwood and Cob.
  2. Practice what you've learned i.e. plant a garden, get your hands dirty :)  (Just with these two things, you will feel more at ease with yourself and feel a bit more empowered to face the new world coming)
  3. I don't know if I would buy a gun for protection (at least not here in Canada) but I do plan to have one for hunting within the year. I know a few extremists that have way more firepower and skill than one could amass within a few years...its just a scary life.
  4. Plan where would be a good place to live. A small town with small scale farming within 10 km of town. Where ever you move, you will have to get to know the people around you...you may depend on the friendships you build now.
  5. Associate with like minded people. No one will survive the long emergency alone. Remember, if you know a Carpenter...you don't have to know how to build your own house :)  With friends  you dont have to be a master of all trades or skills; as for the hard work thing...you may have to get used to a few calluses :)

Its not been an easy leap for me....I did quite well in Alberta and squandered it like a good little consumer should have.  By choice, my family and I left with only a 4x8 trailer of what really matters for life. No T.V. but we are getting a bit more use from all those board games that used to take up a shelf in the basement :)

 

Ryan

[email protected]

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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?
Quote:

I don't know if I would buy a gun for protection (at least not here in Canada) but I do plan to have one for hunting within the year. I know a few extremists that have way more firepower and skill than one could amass within a few years...its just a scary life.

Hey Wolf, I don't want to beat a dead horse - people break into two camps on this issue, but something you said struck me as "worthy" of examining.

You said it's a "scary" life. What exactly do you mean by that?
I think almost anything could be scary if you're not comfortable doing it.
Chainsaws are scary, but I have no problem using them because I know I can, and use a healthy amount of caution.

Some of the other military vets can attest... Shooting, and training for any type of warfare can be extremely satasfying.
Others may digress, but for me, it's a component of my personality I just can't shirk. Apart from the physical benefits, confidence and development of both gross and fine motor skills, it's the ultimate safety net. Skill at arms is a scary until you truly experience it. Then it's scary to the bad guys.
It's also exhilerating and a fine workout, if you're into IDPA or 3-gun or the like.

Also, I'd hardly call it extremism. That sounds like hyperbole to me. Something your friends said, and you adopted. Do you know these 'extremists'? They might be more adjusted than you are. Don't be to hasty to judge.
I'm sure there are those out there who think I'm extreme, but I'd prefer that to bland.

Just some thoughts.

Cheers!
Aaron

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Gifts
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

I hope my comments can help in someway.

 

When i first learnt about all of this i was terrified - I dont really feel that way now because i have prepared physically as well as emotionally (as best possible) for this system to go down.

My mum always says - worry about the things you can change and not about the things you cant.

Ok first off - food - flour sugar oats rice pasta soup mixes :) Thats a good start. A thermost will cook a meal if you have these ingredients. Put ingredients in a thermost - cover with hot water - do this in the morning and at night you will have a hot cooked meal. That night - put in oats with hot water - next morning you have a breakfast.

Learn some tricks that will make water - a plastic bottle with a leaf. Learn how to clean water - a good filtration system or a filtration straw or  bleach.

Theres a good book available - Where there is no doctor. Learn some tricks to helping medically. You sound smart - you can do this.

Bicarb of soda and salt will stop tooth pain.Honey and cinnamon will help revent a heart attack.

Need a fridge - two terracotta pots - one bigger then the other - layer the inside of the first with sand - put the second smaller terracotta pot inside the first - fill the gaps between the two with sand and then pour water around between the pots - cover with a towel - there ya go - you have a fridge.

Elderberry tincture - in a bottle put one third elderberry and 2/3 vodka - shake daily for two weeks - then strain out the juice - you now have a medicine that will help with influenza.

My thoughts are - you know the system is going down - so before you look any further into this - get yourself some food - water - medicine. Hide ya food - even if this means building a false wall in ya house - plenty of info available to learn that.

You will feel better once you have some basics covered - once you feel better your mind will feel clearer to think of housing jobs business etc etc etc

My last piece of advice is love - exspecially love self regardless of supposed limitations - I have a broken back and am in pain physically for most of the day and night - i am female and learnt to grow small crops - i learnt these things out of love for my kids.

Grab some basics as i said and you will feel more in control of the things you can change

 

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vvolf
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Re: I'm scared - what can I do?

I did not mean to generalize and put all militia (private or government) into the crazy pot but I do know some wildly extreme people, they have a lot of guns and just the wrong mentality to have them. ( Yesterday morning, I was having my morning coffee and a guy pulled up in his minivan, got out with a 12G shot gun and calmly shot the living crap out of the front of a house a few doors down. He walked back to the drivers seat, put the gun in and calmly drove off. This is in a small city, and as the police said..."this doesn't happen often here")

I have military training, for what its worth, in the Canadian Armed Forces. Yes, that type of training is very satisfying and the confidence and experience you gain from it can be applied to may other aspects of life. (Discipline, critical thinking, etc.) I worry about the 1-5% of the population with psychopathic tendencies. Without proper training, and continued practice, and a level head....a regular person (no training) buying a gun, hiding it in his dresser until he hears a noise outside, is a recipe for trouble.

Scary life: The fact that the only life most people have ever known, is coming to an end. I laugh now when I hear on TV that a lot of the people on earth live in abject poverty.  By that they mean they do not have full time jobs, debt way over their heads and live simply without a garage/house full of useless stuff.

Scary Life:  From Charles Bowden in Blood Orchid: "We are an exceptional model of
the human race. We no longer know how to produce food. We no longer can
heal ourselves. We no longer raise our young. We have forgotten the
names of the stars, fail to notice the phases of the moon. We do not
know the plants and they no longer protect us. We tell ourselves we are
the most powerful specimens of our kind who have ever lived. But when
the lights are off we are helpless. We cannot move without traffic
signals. We must attend classes in order to learn by rote numbered
steps toward love or how to breast-feed our baby. We justify anything,
anything at all by the need to maintain our way of life. And then we go
to the doctor and tell the professionals we have no life. We have a
simple test for making decisions: our way of life, which we cleverly
call our standard of living, must not change except to grow yet more
grand. We have a simple reality we live with each and every day: our
way of life is killing us."

Ryan

 

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