News Roundup

Short — kinda like Michael Bloomberg — takes on the news.

1) Australian Navy Delivers 800 Gallons of Emergency Beer to Bushfire-Hit Townonly 800?  Can’t have been more than a dozen survivorsAt least the Oz squids have their priorities right.  The US Navy would have brought in useless shit like water, without Scotch.

2) Bernie Sanders garners the Slut endorsementthat figures [sic].  Here’s the slut in question:

3) Everybody Blames Trump For Starting The Train Of Events Which Made Iran Shoot Down An Airlinerokay, if we’re going to go back down the “blame” trail, it’s actually Jimmy Carter’s fault in the first place, for letting the murderous ayatollahs take over in Iran.

4) Prince Ginger and Princess Caring-Slut look for supplemental income streamsI think this says it best:

Cooking In Extremis

I saw this pic over at CW’s yesterday, and I have to say that I recommend the concept (as opposed to the item itself, which I’m not familiar with).

I have two of these little cooker types (two in case one breaks or malfunctions), and a dozen or so butane cylinders.  Used sparingly (meaning a cooking session of about 15-20 minutes), each cylinder will deliver close to a dozen meals (including a small kettle of boiling water for coffee or tea).  When we had a 5-day power outage in the Dallas area about five years ago, it was a godsend to have these around — yes, I could have fired up the propane BBQ but it’s overkill if all you want to cook is a single skillet or a kettle.  Pop a cast-iron grill plate on top, and you can cook a meal for two quite comfortably (and grill plates are easier to clean than iron skillets, too).

My cookers look like this (i.e. not as swanky as the one above):

The reason I like this as a SHTF thing (i.e. when there’s no electrical power and you can’t or don’t want to build a cooking fire) is size:  the cooker is small and light, and the little butane cylinders are easily stowable.  Also, they can be found at any Asian store, where both the cookers and butane are way cheaper than at camping stores.  (At our local Yuk Fu market (not its real name), the stove costs about $25 and the butane less than a dollar per cylinder, which is unbeatable).

You’re not supposed to use this setup indoors, of course, but if you have a fireplace (as we did) it’s not a problem as long as you remember to open the flue.

What we also used to do was use it as an outdoors table-top cooker, with the grill plate in place.  Best was to grill thinly-sliced lamb, with a dash of rosemary and salt, or similarly-sliced beef with rubbing spice and/or Liquid Smoke sprinkled over it.  Many was the spring- or fall evening spent around the table on the deck, each family member responsible for cooking their own meat, with sides of pita bread, tomato slices and hummus (for the lamb) and crusty French bread and cole slaw (with the beef).

And now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to the kitchen.

LOL Arsenal

From Fogs Noose  comes this breathless tale (emphasis added):

A Wisconsin man was founding living in an undetected underground bunk in the Milwaukee woods for years with a dog and a stockpile of weapons and ammunition.
Deputies discovered hermit Geoffrey Graff’s odd, hidden abode on Wednesday after responding to a call of shots fired.
After entering the 8-foot-by-8-foot bunker – which was also 20-feet-long – the deputies found an arsenal of weapons including two shotguns, a rifle, a handgun, three knives, ammo and a bow with arrows fashioned from “snowplow stakes,” Milwaukee County Sheriff Earnell Lucas said at a news conference Friday.
Lucas said Graff’s bunker also had a grill, propane tanks, a generator, various power tools, boxes of food and canned goods.

I haven’t checked recently, but I think I could lay my hands on all that stuff (apart from the bow) within a few paces from my living room chair, a couple more are at arm’s length, and let’s not even talk about the contents of my nightstand.

I am curious, however, as to how one fashions arrows from snowplough stakes… I mean, how does one affix the flights to the shaft?  Are the stakes made of wood, or metal?

I think we need to know all that, but of course media.  They won’t even tell us the caliber of the firearms, which tells you all you need to know about journalistic standards.

Still Relevant?

I’ve been thinking about the SHTF thing recently (as one does), and a random thought occurred to me:  is the venerable AR-7 Survival Rifle still a consideration for inclusion in Ye Olde Bugge Out Bagge?  Here’s the original Armalite AR-7:

I tested one of these puppies many years ago, and I was seriously underwhelmed.  I tried at least half a dozen different types and brands of .22 LR, and I got either flawless feeding and crappy accuracy, or decent accuracy and a 1:3 jam rate.  So I wrote the thing off as a waste of time — just another gimmick.

However, time has passed and the AR-7 has now become the property of Henry Repeating Company — and they’ve made some changes, all for the better.  So the question comes up again:  is the little AR-7 still relevant as a SHTF option?

Apparently, it is — or at least, these guys seem to think so.

And I really like what Henry’s done with it.  The component stowage has been tidied up:

Of course, the packed-up rifle is still not only waterproof, but it floats as well:

…and the addition of a high-viz front sight and scope rail, in my opinion, has made all the difference.

So the original concept has been refined enough so that it is, at least, a viable little firearm — and Henry’s creation of an accompanying mini-bug-out pack (see the first link) has made it all the more appealing.

Nevertheless, I’m still a little dubious about the AR-7, and here’s why.  If one is wandering around in the wilderness after the S has HTF, the whole palaver of having to assemble the rifle into an operating firearm is somewhat time-consuming — and given the exigencies of such a scenario, wouldn’t one want the thing to be ready at all times?

(And I’m not going to get into the argument about whether the .22 LR cartridge is a viable SHTF option because it is, in the function for which it is intended:  popping small game for the pot.  No problem with that.)

My question is that since a modern SHTF scenario involves not only wandering around in some post-apocalyptic landscape looking for squirrel snacks, but avoiding (or at worst, fending off) feral critters of the human persuasion, would the .22 requirement not be better served by a longish-barreled handgun such as the 10-round capacity S&W 617, worn on the hip?

Sure, the 16″ barrel of the AR-7 is always going to be more accurate than the 6″ barrel of the 617, but in reality, if one is potting critters over unscoped sights, the shorter distances in practice make the issue somewhat moot, I think.  And if we’re going to insist on a semi-auto .22 firearm, then there’s always the Buckmark URX Contour, with a 7″ barrel (and rail for a scope/red-dot arrangement):

Here’s what I think, at the end of all this.  I like the AR-7 concept, a lot.  I think that as a “stow away and forget about it” addendum to the trunk of your car or storage space in your truck — especially with that survival pack — it’s a winner.  Henry’s rather clever payoff line for the AR-7 is “Don’t leave civilization without it”, and I sorta-agree with that.

But I think that as a SHTF tool, the .22 LR function would be better left to a handgun, while the actual survival  function is delegated to an AR-15 or AK-47.  But that  said, there’s nothing wrong with having an ultra-lightweight rifle in your hands or in your backpack, either.

As you can see, I’m hopelessly conflicted about the AR-7.  Feel free to untangle, explain or even cast insults upon my thoughts, in Comments.  All such would be quite welcome.

Forward Buying

This term defines when one buys something in greater quantities than normal, in anticipation of the supply thereof being interrupted, or to hedge against price increases.  Which was all brought to mind by this post of Insty’s:

“The U.S. plans to swiftly impose tariffs on $7.5 billion in aircraft, food products and other goods from the European Union after the World Trade Organization authorized the levies Wednesday, citing the EU’s subsidies to Airbus. . . . The Office of the U.S. Trade Representative said it would impose the tariffs starting Oct. 18, with 10% levies on jetliners and 25% duties on other products including Irish and Scotch whiskies, cheeses and hand tools.” [emphasis added]

In other words, this weekend should be devoted to laying in a hefty supply of yer favorite single malts, and those snot-textured Frog cheeses (if you’re that way inclined).

Aaaargh.  As always, this is never a simple operation for me.  Do I go for variety?

…or volume?

And don’t give me that “embrace the power of and ” nonsense.  If I do both, then I can’t buy any more of this:

It’s hell being in the working class, I tell ya.