Ok folks, if you haven't realized that our economy is collapsing then now is the time to wake up and smell the barnyard. Actually, I think my barnyard smells better than the current US economy. For those of you who are counting on Obama to save us, forget it. He is controlled by the same puppet masters who care not one whit for your well being. The time is now to take control of your own destiny, something most Americans have not done for generations. We depend on corporate farms for our food and clothing, we depend on large manufacturing for our clothing and goods, we depend on banks for our fake money supply, and we depend on employers for money to buy the things we need to keep us alive. Guess what, quit depending on others for your own survival! These people don't care about you. All they see is the bottom line and I can guarantee your family is not their bottom line. So what can you do to survive the coming collapse, and it will collapse. Here are some plans to put in place.
1. Live debt free. Get rid of all possible debt. I know that is hard to do this late in the game but it is possible to rid yourself of some debt and learn to live without it. If you have two cars and are making 2 car payments, consider selling one and paying off the other. If you have credit cards get rid of them and stop using them. If you have a huge monstrous home in the best suburb around consider selling it for something smaller and more affordable. If you can't afford to pay cash then you can't afford to buy it.
2. Start using trading websites like Craigslist and Freecycle. Trade what you don't need for things you do need.
3. Cut your living expenses. Learn to make your own clothing, stop wasting money at the grocery on things like expensive cleaners, toilet paper, paper towels, tissues, premade meals, shampoo and conditioner. It is much cheaper to buy fabric on sale (or trade for it), make your own cleaners and beauty products, and use cloth where you normally use paper. Cut down on your utility bills, turn off lights and use candles or oil lanterns, get rid of that expensive satellite or cable, use a clothesline instead of a dryer, don't run your dishwasher unless it is full.Some other things to do, reuse your shower water to flush the toilet and water the plants. Drive only when you have to and do all errands at one whack instead of multiple trips.
4. Provide your own needs as much as possible. Grow a garden and learn to can, you can learn to make your own soap and household cleaners. Keeping a few chickens, if possible, will provide both meat, eggs, and feathers for stuffing blankets. Learn to hunt and fish if possible. We fish all summer and fill the freezer with fresh caught fish, then we hunt in the winter and fill the freezer with deer meat. Raising a few meat rabbits can be done in small spaces and provice much needed meat for your family.
5. Learn to reuse. We reuse just about everything. Old sheets become pajamas, pillowcases, playclothes, and handkerchiefs. Old towels become kitchen cloths, cleaning cloths and diapers. Newspapers are used to clean windows and glass, then go into the compost pile for the garden. Kitchen veggie scraps go into the compost pile, which also happens to be where we get our worms for fishing. Stained t-shirts are cut up for potty cloth, diapers, and cleaning cloth. Old clothes are remade into new clothes for smaller people, or saved if they are in good shape.
6. Shop differently. When I do my grocery shopping the first place I go is the bent and dent store. This is the store that buys all the cases that the chain grocers won't accept. If a case has one dented can in it the retail grocer rejects the whole case. That is where the bent and dent comes in. They buy the rejected case at cost and sell the rest of the case at a much cheaper value. For instance, at my chain grocer Delmonte peaches are 1.29 a can. At the bent and dent they are 2 for 1.29. During the growing season visit pick your own farms and then learn to can what you pick. This is much healthier and much cheaper. Also visit the farmer's market for your produce. It is cheaper and healthier than what they sell at the grocery. This of course, means learning to eat what is in season at the time and what can be grown in your local area. Consider joining a farm co-op. Usually you get a box of fresh veggies a week in exchange for a few hours of labor at the farm. It is a good deal. If you farm yourself, then find other farmers in your area and trade what you each need.
7. Learn, learn, learn. Learn everything you can about cutting costs, doing things for yourself and being self sufficient. If you are lucky enough to have parents or grandparents that lived through the great depression then milk them for every ounce of knowledge that you can.
8. Stock up. Having a stock of food and supplies means that when you do have to shop elsewhere you only buy what is on sale and discounted. When you need something then you risk paying full price. When you don't have to have it right then you can wait until it goes on sale. Also, buy in bulk when you can. I buy my flour and sugar in 50 lb. sacks. Those 50lbs. cost half of what the same 50lbs. costs in the grocery.
Surviving the economic collapse means changing your mindset. It means that you look forward to a simple life outside of commercialization and you learn to distinguish needs from wants. Start learning in earnest now and you and your family might survive without the bread lines that are coming.