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Episode 421 S15-24

Your Hope for Survival


Special Guest:

Virgis Ch 24

Butch Erskine

Explore current events and how you and your community can survive with Butch Erskine from Hope for Survival, following chapter 24 of the novel Virgis.

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The heightened preparation level is completely warranted right now. Anytime our military is sent out, we should be concerned. Every event has a cause and effect, whether local, national, or global. We must wonder what type of resources the event will draw away from the people. If the fuel supplies are diverted to a war effort, it will cause the price at the pump to increase to a level where truckers can’t afford the fuel to transport food across the county. The just-in-time systems will quickly fail when the needed shipments are not received.

Terror cells within the US will likely flare if the Middle East continues deteriorating. As a society, we have grown soft. Many people will rely upon the government to tell them what to do in an emergency, and the government doesn’t have plans to handle disturbances in many of the major cities all at once. The social breakdown within the city will cause citizens to flee to outlying areas while the locals in those remote areas begin to panic. The locals will binge buy, and the city transplants will buy what is left. Supplies will disappear.

Right now, you must develop a list of your needs and a list of your wants. Put a food plan in place for six months and then try to stretch that to a year. With inflation, this is going to be a challenge. Start with fundamentals like a protein source, salt, vinegar, etc. Shop local whenever possible.

At Hope for Survival, they have a thirty-two-page checklist for your personal preparedness plan. This checklist includes suggestions on what to buy if you wake up one morning and the disaster is upon you. Items like batteries, car batteries, and tires are included. Think about what makes your home tick and focus there. Have at least a two-year supply of seeds.

When it comes to your community, you must work with what you’ve got. Most of us don’t get to pick our neighbors, so you will have to learn to work together if disaster leaves you reliant upon one another. Do a personal risk assessment as well as a community risk assessment. Remember that everyone can have value. It is your job to make their talents work for the group. Make a mission statement, a plan, and a schedule. Put it into writing so it can be referred to in your absence. Start with your home in the center of a five-mile radius on a map and go to work meeting people and setting up a defensive plan. Know what groups are in other places and get in touch now so later essentials can be traded between the groups. Every step should have a risk assessment to measure the risks and rewards correctly.

This sounds good, but how do you start finding people and vetting them? It makes a big difference where you live. An urban plan will look very different from a suburban one, and a rural one will also differ. Your personality will also be a determining factor. How willing are you to include multiple walks of life in your group? Are you charismatic enough to meet people without being singled out as the nut job in the neighborhood?

You can find like-minded people at local events or join a club focused on skills valuable in collapse, like gardening or a gun club. Another good place is a 1st aid class or the local survival store. Don’t share team information at the start of the relationship. Each situation is different, so strike up a conversation and relax. Enjoy getting to know more about them while you gauge their trustworthiness. Maybe one day you’ll ask them to be part of the team, or maybe not.

The most important thing is being brave and not timid. Believe in yourself and your mission. Know what the FEMA recommendations are and have printouts when you are on a door-to-door meet and greet. Get to know your local sheriff and understand their stand on specific issues affecting you. Be as straightforward as possible about the mission of your group. Build the group and then build a buffer for the group. Eventually, this buffering will create a preparedness network ready to help one another in need.

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Virgis Ch 24

Butch Erskine

Butch Erskine is a decorated U.S. Air Force Veteran of 20 years and public speaker on Emergency Preparedness and Disaster Recovery and author. With over 38 years of experience in all facets of global security, vulnerability assessments and emergency planning, Butch continues his efforts to focus on the spiritual and psychological foundation of the family and individual preparedness.

Butch is a native West Virginian and has resided in Huntsville, AL since 2007. A 1979 graduate of Greenbrier East High School, he entered the United States Air Force in 1983. Butch completed an Associates Degree in Industrial Security from the Community College of the Air Force in 1990, a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Psychology from Park University in 2003, and a Masters of Arts Degree in Emergency and Disaster Management with honors from American Military University in 2012.  Butch is a Defense Contractor working in Emergency Management developing emergency plans, processes, and procedures. Throughout life he has promoted Christian values and Constitutional freedoms.

The last eight years of his military career were spent serving special duty as a Security Advisor to U.S. Air Force Special Operations Command in support of U.S. Special Operations Command (USSOCOM), U.S. Joint Special Operations Command (JSSOC), U.S. Special Operations Command Europe (SOCEUR) and U.S. Special Operations Command Pacific (USSOCPAC).  Traveling over 300 days per year, Butch developed security and anti-terrorism plans in over 50 countries and supported the U.S. Counterterrorism Program to the United States State Department of Defense by conducting Risk Analysis and Vulnerability Assessments for numerous U.S. Embassy’s in Eastern and Western Europe and Africa.

Over the past years Butch has made it his mission to reach out to citizens to help them develop their preparedness and spiritual foundation. He believes the decline of morals, personal freedoms, as well as the increasing attacks on Christians and citizens with conservative values, along with the national debt should alert every family to immediately develop emergency plans. Butch has completed numerous Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Courses.  He graduated from the National Incident Management System (NIMS) FEMA Course to obtain a national certification and is a graduate of Incident Response to Terrorist Bombings, a FEMA/ATF In-Resident Course and FBI Active Shooter Course.

Butch has taught numerous preparedness classes for different groups. He was an instructor at Heritage Life Skills 2018, 2019 and 2021 in Waynesville, NC offering numerous classes on preparedness and self-reliance. He has taught numerous classes from NC, KY, TN, VA, SC and Alabama, including The Madison Institute, radio talk show guest discussing Preparedness, and as guest speaker on America’s Critical Infrastructure for the INFRAGUARD (FBI) Organization.

Butch is the author of two books; Hope for Survival – How Food, Water, Shelter, and Security Could Save Your Life, and, Hope for Survival – The Mindset.

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