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Tuesday, June 30, 2009

New TN Laws On 01 Jul 2009

Here's a link to the new laws that go into effect in Tennessee on Wednesday, 01 July 2009:


Monday, June 29, 2009

Global Wheat Fungus Inevitable

An excellent read here for those of you not familiar with the Ug-99 Durable Wheat Rust fungus that is spreading - most scientists say containment is likely impossible. Read more here:

For a brief overview:
Survival Blog: Ug-99 and The Ugly Times Ahead - There'll Be Fungus Among Us

For more in-depth information:
Borlaug Global Rust Initiative

Summary: Now is the time to be putting away your stores of wheat if you haven't already, before prices start to rise more than they already have. As a reminder, hard wheats are usually used for bread making since they are higher in gluten. Soft wheats are usually best for pastries and pastas. Also, consider alternate sources of grains: spelt, millet, barley, rye, kamut, triticale, amaranth and quinoa.

Some sources for ordering grain:

Bob's Red Mill

Honeyville Grain

Emergency Essentials

Walton Feed


Frontier Survival

Bulk Foods

Aaoob Foods

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Declaration of Medical Emergency in Buenos Aires

Most recent on H1N1 (Swine) Flu:

From Recombinomics
Saturday, June 27, 2009

Link: Medical Emergency Declared in Buenos Aires


Some hospitals began to strengthen measures, including the case of Posadas Hospital, one of the largest hospitals in the province of Buenos Aires that concentrates a large number of internees from the flu. Through a press release, the hospital reported that it declared a state of emergency by the Institution that "all staff will be available to the agency needs to be addressed" after the epidemic of influenza A.

In addition, the Posadas created through Resolution No. 640/09 an Internal Crisis Committee itself, with the aim of ensuring compliance and monitoring of the actions that the hospital must develop to deal with the situation posed by an outbreak of Influenza A .

Meanwhile, health authorities in Buenos Aires and Buenos Aires have some alternatives to strengthen the system, including the use of military hospital in Campo de Mayo, the release of bed in the hospital's intensive care Malvinas Argentinas, the installation of sanitary units in campaign Buenos Aires and mobile primary care close to railway stations and Eleven Constitution.

The above translation describes the declaration of a medical emergency in Buenos Aires. The Buenos Aires Ministry of Health website lists 15 confirmed fatalities, 180 confirmed cases, and 559 suspect cases as of Friday (see Buenos Aires map), but media reports suggest the actual number of cases is higher. Recent reports out of Argentina also described the rapid decline of relative young patients (15-50), with descriptions similar to those used to describe dying patients in 1918. In addition, there has been an outbreak of H1N1 at a pig farm northwest of Buenos Aires (see map).

The sudden jump in cases and fatalities are cause for concern. In the country the number of confirmed fatal cases rose to 27, but there are reports of 15 more fatalities that are suspect. There have also been reports of travelers from Argentina testing positive at airport checks in multiple countries. These travelers should provide multiple samples for sequencing studies to determine if there have been changes in the virus.

Recently PB2 E627K was reported in a traveler from the United States. However, the sequence suggested the change was acquired in China. Although the E627K was present in the original samples and confirmed in the initial clone, and subsequent sub-clone had reverted back to the wild type sequence, raising concerns that some key changes may not be stable under certain culture conditions, and important changes could be lost especially if the virus is cultured in chicken eggs, which could select against important changes associated with adaptation to human hosts.

Therefore, analysis by multiple labs of these sequences would be useful. The flu season is just beginning in the southern hemisphere, providing a favorable environment for rapid adaptive changes. The movement of a swine H1N1 into a human host parallels the 1918 pandemic, which also was associated with mild infections in the later spring, followed by a much more virulent and lethal H1N1 in the fall.

The rapid developments in Buenos Aires bear close scrutiny and active sequence analysis as H1N1 increases its gene pool transmitting through human hosts. Many countries worldwide, including those in the southern hemisphere are experiencing explosive growth, and the developments in Buenos Aires may signal a new wave of Pandemic H1N1.

Staying Cool in Summer Heat

Found this neat little blog post and tidbit of information that I thought I'd share with you all - I know we've had really hot temps here in West Tennessee for the past couple of weeks - our heat index has been 105-110 almost every day and there have been excessive heat warnings and advisories daily. Feel free to share any tips you have for staying cool and using less A/C!

From: The Life of a Prairie Mom on Friday, 26 June 2009

Summer heat has settled in now. We are having temps reaching the low 100*s on a daily basis and often with very little breeze. The focus is becoming the issue of how to deal with summer's heat without fans or air conditioning.

One of the way we combat the heat is to drink lots of fluids! Water and lemonade are always available & kept cold in the refrigerator.

I have started the habit of having a cool bubble bath available for the kids all afternoon. In the late morning, I run about 2-3 inches of water in the tub with a bit of baby wash. At any time in the afternoon when the children are getting too hot, they play in the tub. This works out better than having a small pool outdoors. The wasps love the outdoor kiddie pool as much (if not more than) the little ones! This has been working out very well. The little ones are able to cool off and also we can wash off the sweat & dirt from their playing all at once.

The most strenuous work is done in the mornings only. This will help to prevent becoming overheated & sick from the high temps. The past few days, the radio has announced heat advisories and by early afternoon you can certainly feel it! I now understand the reasons behind the idea of taking a siesta in the hot afternoons.

A recent change that helps greatly with keeping cooler is to not cook in the warm part of day. We now are eating foods cooked on the grill, sandwiches, salads, and a variety of roll-ups instead of cooking a hot meal each day. Things like a layered bean dip (refried beans, taco meat, and assorted toppings common on burritos or tacos) can be made early in the morning then refrigerated until ready to serve. Homemade potato or macaroni salads also can be made in the evening and refrigerated overnight.

We bought expandable screens to put in the windows that did now have any form of screens. This goes far in helping to take advantage of any breeze that happens to be present.

One common tip that we have tried in the past is to put foil in the upper windows. The idea is to reflect the sunlight away from the windows. We take a large piece of cardboard that is large enough to fit the upper half of the window. The cardboard is covered in foil with the shiny side facing outward. The cardboard is then placed in the window. It is important to note that you do not want to fully cover your windows with foil. This will darken the room and turn it into a nice cool, dark enviroment that spiders love! For this reason, we only do the top half of the windows. The bottom half has the window screens which allow both light and air flow.

Prepping, Adapting, or Both?

Don't have a lot of time this morning for a long post - but wanted to throw out a thought for you all to "ponder" this weekend - please discuss in the comments if you feel comfortable doing so.

I know that most of us are feeling that no matter how hard we try to make our voices heard, our government is just not listening. They continue down a road that many of us believe is going to bring America to its knees. Cap and Trade, Socialized Health Care, umpteen-hundred Bailouts for crooked big business, ruining the value of the dollar, apologizing to all of the nations of the world for our past and the list goes on and on and on.

In the past several days, my husband and I have been talking more and more about our need to not only "prep", but make plans and create ideas for how to ADAPT. In my mind, prepping and planning to adapt go hand in hand.

Prepping is very important. There are real-life events that can take place that we need to be prepared for. Tornadoes. Ice Storms. Earthquakes. Hurricanes. Job Loss. Swine Flu. We know these things happen and could happen to us, if they haven't already.

But we also know that we cannot possibly put away enough "preps" to last us a lifetime. We can be prepared for a few days, weeks, months or perhaps years should there be an event that disrupts our usual day-to-day activities. But a lifetime?

What would you do if you had to completely change, for a very long-time (as in many years) or perhaps permanently, the way you live your life?

To get your brain started thinking this way - consider for example, the award-winning athlete who becomes a quadriplegic in an automobile accident. Life forever drastically changed, without warning. How does this person adapt? How does this person re-learn how to perform day to day activities that are now more difficult than ever before?

This is the kind of "learning to adapt" change that I'm talking about. Have you thought about it? Have you thought through what you would do to live, to survive, if the times changed to such a degree that the way we've always done things is no longer relevant?

Just a little food for thought to start the weekend. I'd love to hear your thoughts on this. Now, I'm off to make some cucumber relish.

Friday, June 26, 2009

House Passes Cap and Trade

Formally known as H.R. 2998 - American Clean Energy and Security Act of 2009, was passed by the house 219 to 212 this afternoon.

Here are a couple of articles you might want to review:

Market Watch: Not The Answer to a Secure Energy Future

Bloomberg: Update: House Passed Climate Change Plan

Ron Paul's Blog: 8 House Republicans Helped Pass Cap and Trade

Final Roll Call on Vote to Pass Cap and Trade

Cap and Trade Update

This update I received today via email from Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) regarding the Cap and Trade vote:


The floor fight on Cap and Trade is underway. We have had our first vote on the rule that will govern debate. The rule only allows for one Republican amendment on the bill. 30 Democrats voted against the rule, far more than expected. That is an indication that the Majority may not have the votes they need for this massive energy tax.

An amendment I proposed would force the government to disclose who gets carbon credits, and what is done with the funds that purchase them. The Democrat controlled committee that decides which amendments can be considered decided mine wouldn't make it to the floor.

You can watch what I had to say in speaking against the rule here.

Last night, the Democrats added about 300 new pages to this bill. That means that we are considering a bill in excess of over a thousand pages that no one can have read completely. I am sure you remember that the last time the House passed a thousand page bill without reading it, AIG executives wound up with more bonuses (I voted “no” on that by the way). Today’s debate and the 300 new pages of legislation were the topic of this debate on CNBC today .

The Heritage Foundation estimates that Tennessee will lose 33,000 jobs in 2012 because of this energy tax. Tennessee will lose an average of 25,600 jobs per year from 2012-2035. Need I say more?

My Best


Follow the debate on C-SPAN

Giving Away Deficit Dollars

Read a thread this morning on Survivalist Forum that brought this little bit of news to my attention -

Here's the complete link: International Bailout Brings Us Closer To Economic Collapse.

Written by Ron Paul (R-TX), 23 Jun 2009:

An excerpt:

As Americans struggle through the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression, this emergency supplemental appropriations bill sends $660 million to Gaza, $555 million to Israel, $310 million to Egypt, $300 million to Jordan, and $420 million to Mexico. Some $889 million will be sent to the United Nations for so-called "peacekeeping" missions. Almost one billion dollars will be sent overseas to address the global financial crisis outside our borders. Nearly $8 billion will be spent to address a "potential pandemic flu" which could result in mandatory vaccinations for no discernable reason other than to enrich the pharmaceutical companies that make the vaccine.

Perhaps most outrageous is the $108 billion loan guarantee to the International Monetary Fund. These new loan guarantees will allow that destructive organization to continue spending taxpayer money to prop up corrupt leaders and promote harmful economic policies overseas.

Could someone please explain to me how we can manage to give away money that we don't even have?????? Does this not make you furious????

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Cap and Trade This FRIDAY!

Sent to me in an email update from Representative Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) is the following regarding Cap and Trade that will hit the floor on Friday, 26 June 2009:


The Cap and Trade bill will be on the floor tomorrow. I will update you through the day on its progress as we fight to stop this massive new energy tax. Until then I thought I would pass along this article from today's Wall Street Journal.

My Best,

The Cap and Tax Fiction: Democrats off-loading economics to pass climate change bill.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has put cap-and-trade legislation on a forced march through the House, and the bill may get a full vote as early as Friday. It looks as if the Democrats will have to destroy the discipline of economics to get it done.

Despite House Energy and Commerce Chairman Henry Waxman's many payoffs to Members, rural and Blue Dog Democrats remain wary of voting for a bill that will impose crushing costs on their home-district businesses and consumers. The leadership's solution to this problem is to simply claim the bill defies the laws of economics.

Their gambit got a boost this week, when the Congressional Budget Office did an analysis of what has come to be known as the Waxman-Markey bill. According to the CBO, the climate legislation would cost the average household only $175 a year by 2020. Edward Markey, Mr. Waxman's co-author, instantly set to crowing that the cost of upending the entire energy economy would be no more than a postage stamp a day for the average household. Amazing. A closer look at the CBO analysis finds that it contains so many caveats as to render it useless.

For starters, the CBO estimate is a one-year snapshot of taxes that will extend to infinity. Under a cap-and-trade system, government sets a cap on the total amount of carbon that can be emitted nationally; companies then buy or sell permits to emit CO2. The cap gets cranked down over time to reduce total carbon emissions.

To get support for his bill, Mr. Waxman was forced to water down the cap in early years to please rural Democrats, and then severely ratchet it up in later years to please liberal Democrats. The CBO's analysis looks solely at the year 2020, before most of the tough restrictions kick in. As the cap is tightened and companies are stripped of initial opportunities to "offset" their emissions, the price of permits will skyrocket beyond the CBO estimate of $28 per ton of carbon. The corporate costs of buying these expensive permits will be passed to consumers.

The biggest doozy in the CBO analysis was its extraordinary decision to look only at the day-to-day costs of operating a trading program, rather than the wider consequences energy restriction would have on the economy. The CBO acknowledges this in a footnote: "The resource cost does not indicate the potential decrease in gross domestic product (GDP) that could result from the cap."

The hit to GDP is the real threat in this bill. The whole point of cap and trade is to hike the price of electricity and gas so that Americans will use less. These higher prices will show up not just in electricity bills or at the gas station but in every manufactured good, from food to cars. Consumers will cut back on spending, which in turn will cut back on production, which results in fewer jobs created or higher unemployment. Some companies will instead move their operations overseas, with the same result.

When the Heritage Foundation did its analysis of Waxman-Markey, it broadly compared the economy with and without the carbon tax. Under this more comprehensive scenario, it found Waxman-Markey would cost the economy $161 billion in 2020, which is $1,870 for a family of four. As the bill's restrictions kick in, that number rises to $6,800 for a family of four by 2035.

Note also that the CBO analysis is an average for the country as a whole. It doesn't take into account the fact that certain regions and populations will be more severely hit than others -- manufacturing states more than service states; coal producing states more than states that rely on hydro or natural gas. Low-income Americans, who devote more of their disposable income to energy, have more to lose than high-income families.

Even as Democrats have promised that this cap-and-trade legislation won't pinch wallets, behind the scenes they've acknowledged the energy price tsunami that is coming. During the brief few days in which the bill was debated in the House Energy Committee, Republicans offered three amendments: one to suspend the program if gas hit $5 a gallon; one to suspend the program if electricity prices rose 10% over 2009; and one to suspend the program if unemployment rates hit 15%. Democrats defeated all of them.

The reality is that cost estimates for climate legislation are as unreliable as the models predicting climate change. What comes out of the computer is a function of what politicians type in. A better indicator might be what other countries are already experiencing. Britain's Taxpayer Alliance estimates the average family there is paying nearly $1,300 a year in green taxes for carbon-cutting programs in effect only a few years.

Americans should know that those Members who vote for this climate bill are voting for what is likely to be the biggest tax in American history. Even Democrats can't repeal that reality.

Congress' Turn to Hear About the UN CRC!

Yesterday had an overwhelming response to the plea from ParentalRights.org to let our Senators and our UN Ambassador Susan Rice know in no uncertain terms that Americans do not support ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, but that we DO most definitely support the Parental Rights Amendment (H.J. Res 42).

TODAY, ParentalRights.org is requesting that we now turn our efforts toward Congress. While 100 congressmen have signed-on as co-sponsors of the Parental Rights Amendment, many are on the fence or against the amendment, and THEY NEED TO HEAR FROM US!

Here is the email update with instructions for contacting ONLY THOSE CONGRESSMEN WHO ARE NOT already co-sponsors for the amendment:

Dear Champion of Parental Rights,

Let’s keep the momentum going! Yesterday we warned you about the Obama administration’s “trial balloon” to consider ratifying the UN’s Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC), and your calls had a huge impact. Ambassador Susan Rice’s office even had to disconnect their phone line! You also tied up the White House comment line all day, and many Senators got a loud and clear message.

All we left out was the Congress – and today it is their turn. As of now, we have more than 100 cosponsors on H.J. Res. 42, the Parental Rights Amendment introduced by Rep. Pete Hoekstra. This is a huge milestone, and one many thought we would never reach. It is amazing that we reached it this fast!

We are excited to have topped the 100 mark, but many congressmen are still on the fence, uncommitted, or just plain opposed to the Parental Rights Amendment. Today, we will let them know in no uncertain terms that the American public wants to see this Amendment passed.

Recently, the CRC has been used to challenge the US Army’s recruiting practices, threaten educational choice in Great Britain, discourage corporal punishment in Guatemala, and the list goes on. To protect U.S. sovereignty, states’ rights, and parental liberty, continue the fight for the Parental Rights Amendment.

Here is what we need you to do today to press our advantage and protect parental rights:

1. If your congressman is not a cosponsor yet, call them today and ask why they are not one of more than 100 congressmen who are. Tell them the Parental Rights Amendment will protect the current American system of family law from judicial erosion and international law, including the Convention on the Rights of the Child. It will protect the rights of the states to continue to make family law as they do now, instead of transferring that power to the federal bureaucracy.

2. If your congressman is on our list of cosponsors, do not call them! If you want to thank them, a note or card sent by mail would be the politest way to do so. Additionally, you can do one or more of the following:

i) Contact the media. Parental Rights is not a “media darling”, so they will try to overlook our efforts and triumphs. Don’t let them! If you can write, write a letter to the editor of your local paper. If not, call your favorite radio or t.v. news and commentary program – whether it’s Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh or Jon Stewart and Al Franken – and urge them to contact parentalrights.org at 540-751-1245 for an interview.

ii) Pass along this email to as many friends as you can. The movement has begun, but must continue to grow if we are to see these things through.

iii) Visit parentalrights.org and parentsrights.us for more information on the Parental Rights Amendment. Parentalrights.org also contains a host of information on why we must oppose ratification of the CRC if future generations of Americans are ever to know freedom.

For updates of this email online, click here.

Crystal Ball? Fall Flu Thoughts

There has been some great reading this morning (heck, actually all week) over at The Market Ticker. If you don't regularly read that blog, I cannot express strongly enough how much I encourage you to do so. You'll get some straight-forward analysis of the current goings-on of our economy, the bailouts, the markets, unemployment, the banks - everything. And it is in plain English, so you'll know and understand what you are reading and walk away having time well-spent learning something new or understanding something more fully.

Okay, fresh from The Market Ticker this morning I found this little gem of information about the H1N1 flu virus (click on the H1N1 link to read the full blog post). I know, lots of people seem tired of hearing about this and think it is just another "no big deal" flu bug.

But not so fast. We know that this virus is different from our "usual" flu viruses because it seems to prefer warm temperatures. That's why we're still seeing increasing numbers of infection of this virus in the U.S. even though it is summer.

I do have to say here that I'm very disappointed in the way the CDC is posting statistics on this virus - they are woefully behind and it has been stated publicly on many forums that most states are hardly doing any testing at all for this virus except on the most severe, hospitalized cases. So the numbers could be much higher and we just don't know it.

There are reports now coming out from Shanghai that the virus has mutated there and has now also picked up a viral sequence (E627K) that makes it also well-suited for cold climates - which has scientists now a bit worried about how this virus will hit those in the Northern Hemisphere this fall/winter. If the virus mutates enough, those who might have gotten it here in the U.S. this spring/summer could get the "new" version of it again this fall/winter.

Also, this particular flu strain is hitting those in the age range of 30-50 years old particularly hard. It is causing something called a cytokine storm in some of these individuals that are otherwise normal and healthy - basically their immune system ends up working too well when attacking this bug causing a fatal reaction.

Scientists are closely watching the development and evolution of this virus in the Southern Hemisphere that is now experiencing their normal winter cold/flu season. They hope to glean some information from the behavior of the virus that might let us have a peek into what to expect in our hemisphere this fall.

Their thoughts on what the virus will be like this fall are not optimistic. Taken from the Utah Public Health Situation Report Dated 24 Jun 2009:

CDC is now estimating that the novel H1N1 virus will be “Category 2” in severity. They are closely watching the situation in the Southern Hemisphere for validation of this estimate.
A category 2 pandemic has the following characteristics:
~Case fatality ratio of 0.1 percent to less than 0.5 percent.
~Between 90,000 and 450,000 deaths in the U.S. (compared with estimated 36,000 deaths during a typical influenza season).
~Excess death rate of between 30 to less than 150 per 100,000 people.
~Illness rate of between 20 and 40 percent.
~Similar to 1957 pandemic.
All this to say, continue to pay attention to this virus and how it is behaving. I recently found a whole forum board dedicated to international discussion and information sharing on H1N1 - you can go here: Pandemic Flu Information Forum.

If you don't already have a plan of action for your family for this fall in case this virus turns very ugly, you should. You should be prepared to "self-quarantine" if needed and stay put in your home for at least 2 weeks to 30 days, possibly longer, because of waves of infection.

Start thinking now about the items you would need to have on hand to do that. Make your lists and start gradually making your purchases now, so it is not such a big hit on your budget all at one time. I'll post soon on what we think some of the essential items are to have on hand and what we've done to prepare for just such a possibility.

Feel free to share any first-hand experiences you've had with this virus, or preparations you've taken for your family.

Garmin GPS Problems!

Found this important information over on The Market Ticker this morning. If you own a Garmin GPS, it is vital that you read this information to make certain you don't end up with a completely non-functioning unit!

From: The Market Ticker
Thursday 24 Jun 2009

Garmin: Blown Nuvis?

There is apparently something VERY wrong with a firmware update that got pushed to Garmin Nuvis (one of their portable GPS systems.)

If you have one of these, and have not used it recently, do not until you check with Garmin! If your unit has the "bad" firmware it may go completely dead, requiring replacement.

While Garmin is apparently making good, they are not (as of this time) eating shipping charges back to them nor doing anything for your time without the unit.

There is now a Garmin FAQ entry up on this that has firmware update instructions - IF your unit is displaying "Updating GPS firmware" or similar messages.

If its dead, you're screwed as the unit will apparently have to go back.

This is a major design defect folks, and if it is also the case for other Garmin products, this has the potential to cause serious trouble for Garmin, and serious COST to them.

Of late manufacturers have gotten into the habit of putting field-upgrade capability into their hardware. Garmin has done it for a long time. This is generally a good thing, as it allows new features and bug fixes to be distributed.

HOWEVER, it is absolutely essential that all such devices have a HARD ROM area that cannot be overwritten or damaged, and a means for the consumer to get back to that ROM entry. This "zero loader" capability means that if you screw up an update, or the manufacturer sends you an update that blows your device up, it is recoverable without sending the unit back to the factory by entering that "zero loader" and re-flashing the firmware.

Garmin apparently has omitted this safety feature and good engineering practice in their units - another buck or two worth of cost in the form of a permanent PROM with a boot loader in it, which can't be overwritten and which is accessed by holding down a button or similar while powering on.

As a result they are now going to get socked with returns of these devices and the reprogramming cost which they will eat.

This hasn't shown up in their stock price - but it very well might.

Hattip JFedak on the forum for the original story.

Disclosure: No position, but will consider a short in the morning.

Again, I strongly urge you to make The Market Ticker a part of your daily reading. The information and education you'll get from reading the posts make it some of the most worthwhile reading and time spent in the whole day.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Testing the CRC Waters - Time To Respond!

*****See Important Update at End of Post*****

I received this update this morning from Parental Rights.org - a wonderful organization that works to keep parental rights where they should be - with parents; and is working hard to fight against the U.S. ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC).

The administration is now "testing the waters" (as they indicate in this update) to see if they are going to draw much opposition for ratifying this treaty - and we need to work quickly and loudly to make our voices heard that we do not support the US ratifying this treaty.

If you are not familiar with the UN Convention, it is most urgent that you take the time to visit Parental Rights website and get educated about this convention and all it does to TAKE AWAY rights of parents.

The threat is real, it is huge, and judges throughout this nation are already using parts of the CRC to make legal rulings regarding families. You can visit this link THE THREAT to see real examples of rulings that are using CRC to break apart families and undermine parental wishes.

I urge you to keep abreast of developments regarding this treaty; in addition to taking away parental rights it is another example of taking a UN Treaty that once ratified, becomes the overwhelming law of the land here.

Here is the update I received this morning - please read and take action:

Dear Friend of Parental Rights,

Monday in a Harlem middle school, U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Susan Rice told a group of 120 students that administration officials are actively discussing “when and how it might be possible to join” (that is, ratify) the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC). As before, she also communicated what a disgrace it is that the U.S. would stand with only Somalia against such a widely-accepted treaty.

This is the first direct public statement by the Obama administration that it will seek ratification of the UN CRC.

In my 30 years of political involvement, I have learned to recognize this as what is called a “trial balloon.” Like in World War I trench warfare, our opponents have “sent up a balloon” to see if it will draw fire. If things remain quiet, they will proceed with their plans to push for ratification of the CRC in the U.S. Senate.

To discourage them from doing so, we need to make sure that our voices are heard with unmistakable clarity. We must let the Obama administration know that we oppose this anti-family, anti-American treaty.

Here’s what we need you all to do:

1. Call the White House comments line at 202-456-1111. Tell them you heard the administration wants to ratify the CRC, and you strongly oppose this giving away of U.S. sovereignty to the UN. Also keep in mind that this treaty gives the government jurisdiction to override any decision made by any parent if the government thinks that a better decision can be made—even if there is no proof of any harm.

2. Call Ambassador Susan Rice’s office at the United Nations. Tell her that you want her to represent the United States to the world rather than trying to get the United States to go along with international treaties.

UPDATE: It turns out Susan Rice's name is not in the automated directory. However, there are three options to fix this. Please dial ONE of them, and deliver the message that you oppose the CRC, and that she should represent Americans to the United Nations rather than push a UN agenda on our country.

1. Dial the main line at 1-212-415-4000, and dial 6 to leave your message; OR

2. Dial the Public Diplomacy Office at 1-212-415-4050 and leave a message; OR

3. Dial her office directly at 1-212-415-4404. Again, you will need to leave a message.

This is not a message they want to hear, so do not expect a cordial reception. The important thing is to get the message through.

3. Contact your Senators and urge them to oppose ratification of this treaty. (Find your Senators’ contact information by typing your zip code into the box here.) Ask them also to defeat it once and for all by cosponsoring SJRes 16 – the Parental Rights Amendment.

It is very important that we speak up right now. Please call before you close this email!

Michael Farris

Find this letter online.

UPDATE from ParentalRights.org: Congratulations!

The office of U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice has been inundated with calls! The first phone line we sent out has been completely shut down, and the voice mail system for all of their lines has been crashed.

This means you can't likely get through, so what do you do?

You no longer need to call the U.S. office at the U.N. Instead, please contact the White House comment line at 202-456-1111. It may be busy - we have kept it busy all day -- but keep trying. It is only open from 9 to 5 (EDT), so time is limited. However, you can also send them a message online at http://www.whitehouse.gov/CONTACT/.

Also, contact your Senators. Their offices also close at 5 (EDT), so try to get to them quickly - or call tomorrow!

This Week In Washington

I receive periodic updates from Representative Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and thought I'd share this email I received - it has some links where you can go to read more about Cap and Trade and the Democratic Health Plan. Here title of this email: This Will Be A Busy (And Expensive) Week in Washington:


This will be a busy and expensive week in the House. Today, House Democrats released their "new" Cap and Trade bill. This isn't the bill we debated and amended in the Energy and Commerce Committee last month. This is a new instrument, nearly twice as long still very expensive. This isn't an energy bill, it is a tax bill plain and simple. You can read the bill here.

This week, hearings will also begin on the Democrat's health care plan. Starting early each morning, the Energy and Commerce Committee will hold hearings on the Democrat's "discussion draft" a huge piece of legislation to create a "public option" government run health care plan.

Tomorrow we'll be hearing from Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius. I plan to ask her a number of questions, including what lessons this administration has learned from Tennessee's experience with TennCare. Additional analysis of the Democrat health care bill can be found here.

You should be able to follow this week's hearings on the C-SPAN website.

If you haven’t already, go ahead and sign up as a supporter on my Facebook page for even faster updates.

My Best,
Now you have the links where you can go take a peek at what's up this week with your tax dollars.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

TN Legislation Updates

Just in case you haven't had a chance to keep up - perhaps you've been as busy as we have working in our gardens this summer - I'm providing a link here to an excellent summary of the firearm legislation that made its way through the TN Legislature this session.

From NRA-ILA on 19 Jun 2009: Tennessee Legislature Wraps Up the 2009 Session!
Friday, June 19, 2009

Two More NRA-backed Bills head to the Governor!

The Tennessee General Assembly’s 2009 Session adjourned sine die, late in the evening on Thursday, June 18. Prior to adjournment, the Assembly passed NRA-backed House Bill 898, sponsored by State Representative Eric Watson (R-22) and State Senator Dewayne Bunch (R-9), and House Bill 961, sponsored by State Representative Mike Bell (R-26) and State Senator Tim Burchett (R-7).

HB 898 would broaden the definition of “law enforcement officer” to include retired and off-duty law enforcement officials. It also expands the right to carry by active law enforcement officials to more geographical locations. Based upon Tennessee Attorney General Robert E. Cooper’s opinion dated June 12, (Opinion No. 09-118), HB 898 was also amended to specify that no entity of state or local government is authorized to discriminate based solely upon conduct or activity related to the lawful possession of firearms where alcoholic beverages are served. After being referred to a conference committee, HB 898 passed the House on a 77 to 13 vote and the Senate on a 25 to 4 vote.

HB 961 would authorize a person with a handgun carry permit to possess a firearm in a refuge, public hunting area, wildlife management area, or on national forest land. HB 961 passed the House on an 89 to 3 vote and passed the Senate unanimously on a 28 to 0 vote.

HB 898 and HB 961 now head to Governor Phil Bredesen’s (D) desk for consideration. Please make your voices heard in support of these important bills. The Governor can be reached by phone at (615)741-2001 or email at Phil.Bredesen@tn.gov.

In a strong affirmation of our Second Amendment Rights, the Tennessee Legislature worked diligently this session to successfully pass several pro-gun measures into law. Included among these was an override of Governor Phil Bredesen’s (D) veto of House Bill 962, NRA-backed restaurant carry legislation.

  • House Bill 46, sponsored by State Representative Joshua Evans (R-66) and State Senator Jim Tracy (R-16), prohibits the Department of Safety, or any department-approved handgun safety employee, from requiring a carry permit applicant to furnish any identifying information concerning any handgun the applicant owns or possesses. HB 46 went into effect on April 27.

  • House Bill 70, sponsored by State Representative Henry Fincher (D-42) and State Senator Andy Berke (D-10) removed the prohibition against using deadly force in protection of personal property. It expands the right to self-defense to include a place of business. HB 70 will take effect Wednesday, July 1.

  • House Bill 254, sponsored by State Representative Glen Casada (R-63) and State Senator Mark Norris (R-32), eliminate the requirement to provide a thumbprint as part of the background check process when purchasing a firearm. HB 254 will take effect Wednesday, July 1.

  • House Bill 390, sponsored by State Representative Henry Fincher (D-42) and State Senator Doug Jackson (D-25), allows handgun carry permit holders to possess or carry a rifle or shotgun with a loaded magazine -- provided the firearm does not have a round in the chamber -- while in a private motor vehicle. HB 390 takes effect Wednesday, July 1.

  • House Bill 716, sponsored by State Representative Frank Niceley (R-17) and State Senator Mae Beavers (R-17), allows any resident who has a valid handgun carry permit to possess a handgun within the boundaries of any state park. It also allows for permit holders to carry into local parks as of September 1, as long as the locality does not opt-out of the law by resolution before that date. Tennessee now joins 31 other states that allow some form of state park carry. Permit Holders can carry into Tennessee state parks as of June 12.

  • House Bill 962, sponsored by State Representative Curry Todd (R-95) and State Senator Doug Jackson (D-25), enables law-abiding Right-to-Carry permit holders to carry firearms for self-defense in restaurants that serve alcohol, provided the permit holder is not consuming alcohol. HB 962 passed both the House and Senate with broad bipartisan support, but Governor Bredesen vetoed the bill on May 28, disappointing more than 200,000 Tennessee Right-to-Carry permit holders. While an override of his veto needed only a simple majority vote to pass, it cleared both chambers with overwhelming, bi-partisan support. The House voted to override Governor Bredesen by a margin of 69-27, and the Senate by a margin of 21-9. HB 962 goes into effect July 14.

  • Senate Bill 309, sponsored by State Senator Andy Berke (D-10) and State Representative Henry Fincher (D-42), grants a shooting range that had been in operation for at least 30 years prior to December 16, 2008, the right to continue operating at the same location. This right may not be amended, restricted, or terminated due to zoning changes. SB 309 went into effect May 19.

  • Senate Bill 2276, sponsored by State Senator Jim Kyle (D-28) and State Representative Eddie Bass (D-65), authorize the Department of Safety to present a law enforcement officer’s service weapon to the spouse or child of an officer who dies in the line of duty. SB 2276 went into effect on May 5.

Several pro-gun bills remain active in the Tennessee Legislature, but will not be heard again until the 106th General Assembly reconvenes Tuesday, January 12 for the 2010 session. These bills include Permit Confidentiality, which was to be referred back to Calendars Committee because it lacked a majority vote; the disposition of confiscated firearms bill, which was on its final vote by the Senate; and the Right to Hunt and Fish Resolution, which was on its Second Reading in the House and was recommended for passage by the Finance Ways and Means Committee in the Senate.

House Bill 1395, sponsored by State Representative Joshua Evans (R-66) was referred to summer study and is expected to be discussed before next session. HB 1395 would protect your right to lawfully transport and store firearms in your privately owned locked motor vehicle while parked in a publicly accessible parking lot controlled by your employer or a business you frequent.

Thank you to everyone who took the time to contact their Tennessee legislators this session!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Calling All TN HAM Operators


In an effort to expand our Preppers Network HAM Operators in each state, we're working to get in touch with each other so we know others in our state and throughout the nation that we can contact in the event of any emergency.

If you are a HAM Operator in TN and would like to participate, respond to the above and you can also email me if you would like for me to put you on our list of TN HAM Operators that the Preppers Network could contact.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

International Laws are U.S. Laws?

I received this email update today from ParentalRights.org, where I have an email subscription for their updates. They are an organization that belives children are protected when parents are empowered to rear and educate their children without interference from government.

They have an update from 16 June 2009 entitled: International Law versus Army Recruiters - here's the quote from their site:

A U.S. District Court in Oakland last week declined to hear oral arguments in a case pitting international law against U.S. military policy. Judge Saundra Armstrong announced Tuesday that she would decide the case based on briefs and other documents presented to the court for that purpose. “No matter the outcome,” Arcata counsel Brad Yamauchi says, “we’re going to appeal to the 9th Circuit and possibly the Supreme Court.”

At the heart of the case are local ordinances from Eureka and Arcata, two northern California cities, which would prohibit U.S. armed services recruiters from initiating contact with youths under 18, anywhere within city limits. The U.S. Department of Justice first filed suit against the towns, claiming that these Youth Protection Acts fail under Article VI of the Constitution, which makes federal law supreme over contradictory state or local legislation.

In response, the cities filed countersuits claiming that current military policy violates the Convention on the Rights of the Child’s Optional Protocol on Children in Armed Conflict, which the U.S. ratified in 2002. (This is a separate but related treaty to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC); the U.S. has not ratified the main CRC.) “When the government enters into an international treaty or protocol, that becomes the law of the United States,” says Yamauchi, also citing Article VI. The cities claim that the U.S. military is in violation of the Protocol’s prohibition on the recruiting of children for military service. Current federal law allows representatives of the armed services to educate high school and college students on military career options, alongside other educational and vocational recruiters at job fairs and the like. To actually enlist, however, one must be 18, or close to 18 with parental consent. This countersuit constitutes the first time since the 2002 ratification of the protocol that the federal government’s compliance with the treaty has been legally questioned.

Judge Armstrong’s decision to forgo oral arguments is widely considered favorable to the federal government’s case. “[I]f anything, it is a negative sign for us because we obviously have the steeper hill to climb,” admits Eureka City Attorney Sheryl Schaffner. However, Armstrong’s decision, which could come at any time, is not likely to be the end, nor is it safe to guess how the 9th Circuit might rule if the case is appealed.

That this case exists at all is evidence of the threat that international law presents to our American way of life. Should the full CRC be ratified, not only federal law, but even state, local and individual family decisions will come under the authority of the United Nations when children are involved. The Parental Rights Amendment is the only guaranteed method to permanently stop international law from interfering with family and state laws.

This case is very important for us to watch, because at the heart is the argument that part of an international treaty that was ratified by the U.S. in 2002 is now law of the land here. And all the more reason why we parents need to fight with all we have against allowing the U.S. to ratify the UN Convention on the Rights Of The Child. You can read more about the UN Convention on the Rights of The Child at the link and find out for yourself exactly how dangerous this treaty is to dissolving your parental rights.

IF THIS isn't enough, Britain is using the same UN Convention on the Rights of the Child to argue for an END to homeschooling for British parents - something that could very well happen in the U.S. if the Convention is ratified here. Those of you who homeschool are well aware of the opposition we have out there and this Convention, if ratified, would indeed be used against us by the NEA and others to take away our homeschooling rights. You can read more about what's happening in Britain here: UN Treaty Jeopardizes Homeschool Freedom in Britain.

Stay alert, stay informed.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

ABC Turns Programming Over to Government

This is truly incredible. Found this morning on my daily read of The Market Ticker, by Karl Denninger. He has authenticated this letter. Here's the info:

Original Post:

Tuesday, June 16. 2009

Posted by Karl Denninger in Politics at 09:28
(Page 1 of 351, totaling 1053 entries)
Goebbels Media (Update: Authenticated)
There's the link to Mr. Dennigner's complete blog post and the RNC letter. I'm only showing the content of the letter here, for brevity:

Tue Jun 16 2009 08:45:10 ET

On the night of June 24, the media and government become one, when ABC turns its programming over to President Obama and White House officials to push government run health care -- a move that has ignited an ethical firestorm!

Highlights on the agenda:

ABCNEWS anchor Charlie Gibson will deliver WORLD NEWS from the Blue Room of the White House.

The network plans a primetime special -- 'Prescription for America' -- originating from the East Room, exclude opposing voices on the debate.


Late Monday night, Republican National Committee Chief of Staff Ken McKay fired off a complaint to the head of ABCNEWS:

Dear Mr. Westin:

As the national debate on health care reform intensifies, I am deeply concerned and disappointed with ABC's astonishing decision to exclude opposing voices on this critical issue on June 24, 2009. Next Wednesday, ABC News will air a primetime health care reform “town hall” at the White House with President Barack Obama. In addition, according to an ABC News report, GOOD MORNING AMERICA, WORLD NEWS, NIGHTLINE and ABC’s web news “will all feature special programming on the president’s health care agenda.” This does not include the promotion, over the next 9 days, the president’s health care agenda will receive on ABC News programming.

Today, the Republican National Committee requested an opportunity to add our Party's views to those of the President's to ensure that all sides of the health care reform debate are presented. Our request was rejected. I believe that the President should have the ability to speak directly to the America people. However, I find it outrageous that ABC would prohibit our Party's opposing thoughts and ideas from this national debate, which affects millions of ABC viewers.

In the absence of opposition, I am concerned this event will become a glorified infomercial to promote the Democrat agenda. If that is the case, this primetime infomercial should be paid for out of the DNC coffers. President Obama does not hold a monopoly on health care reform ideas or on free airtime. The President has stated time and time again that he wants a bipartisan debate. Therefore, the Republican Party should be included in this primetime event, or the DNC should pay for your airtime.

Ken McKay
Republican National Committee
Chief of Staff
Please take a few minutes to go to Mr. Denninger's blog and read the whole post - and as I've mentioned numerous times before, if you don't make his blog one of your daily reads, you really should!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Hand Sanitizer Recall

The FDA has recalled various lots of skin/hand sanitizer and other skin products made by Clarcon because of contamination in their products with high-levels of disease-causing bacterias. A recent inspection of the Good Manufacturing Practices of the company led to this finding.

Here is the article:

FDA Warns Against Using Clarcon Skin Products

I know that many of us have purchased extra hand sanitizer to have on hand since April's news about the H1N1 (swine) flu virus - so please take a few moments to do your research, check your stocks and make sure that you don't keep any of these products around. Discard any that you find.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

EMP - What To Know

There seems to be a lot of conversation cropping up these days about EMP (Electro-Magnetic Pulse), especially with the shenanigans of North Korea - although a similar effect could also happen from sun storms that are naturally occurring. I thought you might like to have a few links to read, especially if this is a topic you are not familiar with and would like to understand. You can also do an internet search for "EMP" and find more than enough info to keep you reading for days on end.

Noah's Ark: Protecting Yourself From EMP

Space Storm Alert: 90 Seconds from Catastrophe

Politics Daily: Rogue State Nuke - The Ultimate IED

Also worth reading:

The Good News About Nuclear Destruction - most people think that in the event of a nuclear attack we'd all die immediately - not true. Read, learn and research more.

Newsmax: A Single Nuke Could Destroy America
Tennessee Preppers Network Est. Jan 17, 2009 All contributed articles owned and protected by their respective authors and protected by their copyright. Tennessee Preppers Network is a trademark protected by American Preppers Network Inc. All rights reserved. No content or articles may be reproduced without explicit written permission.