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Present Danger?

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(The following was originally printed in the Journal of Civil Defense: June 1978)

Excerpts of a statement given by Eugene V. Rostow of the Committee on the Present Danger to the U.S. Senate Committee on the Budget (March 1, 1978)

Nothing could be more useful to the nation now than a serious public discussion about the nature of Soviet policy and the problems it poses for us . . .

We believe that prudent and resolute action by this session of the Congress, substantially increasing the Administration’s Defense Budget, could mark one of the finest hours in its long and glorious history. . .

But Secretary Brown seems to suggest that we have to do no more now than keep the situation from getting any worse than it is. We emphatically disagree . . .

There is no harmony between the words and the music of the Administration’s budget. The Administration’s proposals do not meet the implacable arithmetic of the problem. The budget does not meet the Secretary’s stated goal of maintaining the status quo. It therefore fails both as a diplomatic signal and as a security measure. It simply isn’t enough to restore our deterrent strength, both strategic and conventional. Moreover, it fails the most important test of a Defense Budget: to give us full confidence in our ability to protect our national interests in peace. The Administration’s budget proposals would leave the Soviet Union’s military effort still growing more rapidly than ours, thus further increasing their lead -in many important categories of military strength . . .

The government is in a strange mood, a mood which reminds me of the ‘thirties,’ when we and the British hesitated between action and inaction until it was too late to prevent World War 11 . . .

This time we must not wait for a new Pearl Harbor to arouse us. The risks of such a course are too grave to be contemplated. In this situation of incipient crisis, we should follow one of-Parkinson’s most perceptive laws-his observation that the success of a policy is measured by catastrophes which do not happen. The budget proposed by the Administration does not meet Parkinson’s standard . . .

If the Secretary of Defense is wrong in his assessment of the present situation, we may well face the prospect that the Committee on the Present Danger identified in its 1976 statement: “Our alliances will weaken; our promising rapprochement with China could be reversed. Then we could find ourselves isolated in a hostile world, facing the unremitting pressures of Soviet policy backed by an overwhelming preponderance of power. Our national survival itself would be in peril, and we should face, one after another, bitter choices between war and acquiescence under pressure.” . . .

Four fundamental and adverse developments have taken shape since 1972, when the SALT Agreement was signed. The Soviets have made extremely rapid progress in MIRVing their missiles. Since their missiles have more throw weight than ours, this raises the first problem-how many warheads are they deploying per missile? What is the destructive power of each warhead? And what is the accuracy of these warheads, and what will it be in the future?

The second great change since 1972 is that the Soviets have made some of their ICBMs mobile, despite what the Senate was told on that subject when SALT I was ratified. The President has said that the Soviet Union is already deploying mobile ICBMs. The experts agree that it is in a position to deploy them on a large scale and quickly.

Third, recent reports of Soviet progress in antisatellite satellites-killer satellites-threaten our chief means of intelligence, communications and control. There is no need to underscore the importance of this development.

Fourth, we must note the significance of the Soviet civil defense programs. Even if imperfect, these programs reduce the effectiveness of our deterrents.

These four developments alone-and there are others-transform the problem of strategic deterrence . . .

No President of the United States should ever be put into the position of having to choose between holocaust and the surrender of vital American interests.

About:  Eugene V. Rostow, executive committee chairman of the Committee on The Present Danger, is Professor of Law at the Yale University Law School. He was formerly under Secretary of State for Political Affairs.

What to do in a Terrorist Attack

Commemoration against  terrorist attacks (on November 13th, 2015)  in Paris.

Green Beret’s Guide to Surviving the Unthinkable: What to do in a Terrorist Attack

By SOFREP 06.05.2017

The recent events that have unfolded in London, Manchester and other places have people scrambling for answers as to what to do in a terrorist incident. We as a people must maintain our way of life and go about our daily business. Otherwise, the terrorists win. Because they ultimately want to disrupt your lives and if they can fill people with enough fears as to keep them from going to large public events then, they’ve won.

We’re not going to get into a long philosophical discussion on terrorism, the mentally unhinged or the common criminal. While the number of these incidents are rising, they’re still pretty rare. But regardless of how you feel about any particular group or activity, you can still get caught up in one of these types of incidents… so what are you to do? One is to prevent them from happening in the first place.

Hotel/Airports: Try to alleviate any potential situations, when staying at a hotel, try to get a room between the 3rd and 5th floors. You don’t want the bottom two floors because those are too easily attained by terrorists when attacking. Above the fifth floor isn’t ideal as that will take the authorities too long to clear and leaves you vulnerable to continued assault by the bad guys.

A good rule of thumb is to try to get a room centrally located between the elevators and stairwells. It gives you better options to egress from danger.

Avoid the long lines at the airport ticket counters. If you must, get there early to avoid the long lines. Our airport security is lax until you go to the gates. Anyone can enter around the ticket counters and there is little to stop a catastrophe from occurring during peak times or at the Holidays.

No one’s bags are scanned or checked and no one goes thru a metal detector in the US until AFTER the ticket counter. Passing thru Israel many times, you have to go thru multiple checks as well as metal detectors before reaching the ticket counters. Our airport terminals are ripe for a disaster. But having tried to bring this to someone’s attention has fallen on deaf ears.

Situational Awareness: Most trained members of the military and law enforcement have an excellent situational awareness that the average person isn’t trained in nor pays much attention to. But once they become ingrained into your being, those traits never leave you.

Today, whenever my family and I go to large public gatherings, my instincts tend to go into a higher level of alert. Kind of a relaxed alert where your senses are heightened but you aren’t facing imminent danger. We all think that “this will never happen here” but I’m sure if you asked the people of London or Manchester that prior to those incidents, they’d say much the same thing. So, make yourself and your family into a hard target. How do we do that, if we aren’t all Special Operations trained, steely-eyed commandos?

Above all, always trust your gut instincts. In the vast majority of problems, you’ll encounter, the people making the fuss will stand out prior to the incident. Suspicious people and objects are a dead giveaway. And what makes them suspicious? Sometimes their dress or choice of apparel doesn’t fit the surroundings. Three guys enter a building wearing heavy jackets on a summer day? Easy to spot and maybe they’ve got something under those to start a problem. If their mid-sections seem unnaturally rigid, that could be evidence of a suicide bomb or vest.

Their body language and mannerisms are often a dead giveaway. Despite the trying to blend, most people aren’t trained well enough to mask their heightened anxiety and will appear nervous, sweating, or jumpy before an incident.

Report any individual taking pictures of security measures, cameras, and such. And some are even so bold as to draw diagrams, blueprints, or maps in the open.

See someone timing the traffic lights or the response times of a police call to at or near a specific area? You may be witnessing a “dry run” where terrorists or criminals go thru a practice run before the real thing.

But for the average person out there who may not recognize these, use your peripheral vision and scan your surroundings. And the first thing one should always be aware of are the exits. How many are there and where are they located? And never forget that sometimes, the nearest and most easily accessible exit is behind you. In stores and restaurants, the “employee only” signs don’t count during a terrorist incident. And usually, there is a rear exit that can be used. We’ve become conditioned to never go there, but these aren’t normal times.

Are there natural or man-made barriers that will stop or slow your family from exiting? Will those turn into choke points where panic could ensue and create even more problems and carnage?

OK, you’ve taken all the precautions but what happens if you still find yourself in an active terrorist incident… what the heck do you do now?

First thing is, don’t panic. While that sounds overly simplistic it may mean the difference between living and dying.  Always keep your wits about you and you’ll have a better chance of getting out of this alive.

Run, Shelter in Place, Resist: These are the steps that experts agree on. Even if you’re carrying a concealed weapon, the last thing you want to do, [unless forced to] is to get into a shootout with your wife and kids in tow.

Run: If it all possible get out of the immediate danger area quickly and safely. Remember, the quickest, safest way out may be behind you or thru an employee only area. Try to get people to follow. If they don’t, leave them. The majority of people’s first instinct won’t be to run but to hide.  You’re the professional, the sheepdog, lead them out but don’t dawdle.

If there are wounded people present that aren’t ambulatory, you have to leave them. I know that sounds like some really cold-blooded stuff but there it is. The first wave of police and/or Counter-terrorist [CT] types in will do the same.

This goes against our inbred compassion and as Americans, we never want to leave anyone behind but turning one casualty into two or three isn’t the answer. Move quickly out of the danger area to a safe location and call 911. While moving out of the shooting zone, keep your hands visible so that police on-scene don’t mistake you for one of the bad guys.

Leave any items that you’re carrying and get the hell out of Dodge. You can replace shopping items, laptops, etc. but you can’t replace the life of your family members or yourself. Travel light and sleep at home that night. Use any cover to get out and do so quickly.

Shelter in Place: What if you’re stuck in the middle of a shit-storm and there’s no way to safely exit? Then hiding in a safe location comes into play. You want as much cover and concealment as possible. In an office building or school, find an interior room that has a lockable door. Barricade the door to prevent anyone from pushing thru the doorway easily using tables, chairs, or wood that is available. They’re looking for easy targets and by presenting a barricade will buy you valuable time.

Close the blinds, shut off the lights and if possible the air conditioning. Place cell phones on silent not vibrate, be as quiet as possible. Use other desks, chairs, etc. as cover inside the room. Try to call 911 and let an operator know what is going on. If the shooter/shooters are too close, leave the line open so that the 911 operators can hear what is on-going at the site.

Under no circumstances open the door for anyone that you can’t positively identify as either the police or a Hostage Rescue Team [HRT]. I’ve heard that the terrorists in Mumbai used the ruse to yell for help or falsely identify themselves as police in an attempt to get people to show themselves. Don’t make their job easier.

If all else fails and if you can’t hide in a covered and a concealed area, that’s when we get to the least preferred method of handling an active terrorist incident and that is also the most dangerous and that is to fight.

Resist: So, you can’t run, shelter in place and the terrorists are moving in your direction. You are left with basically two choices, be shot out of hand execution-style or fight. But once again, it is the people who keep their wits about them that have a better chance at survival.

Even if you have a concealed weapon, odds are you’re going to be out-gunned. So, you have to be creative and quickly task organize. Gather anything that can be used as a weapon. Is the area dark or close to it? A mini-Maglite can temporarily blind someone just long enough for others to jump a gunman.

Chair legs, any sharp instruments, such as knives, box cutters, and scissors, or a fire extinguisher are usually readily available. Surprise will be your advantage. Most terrorists or criminals don’t expect and aren’t prepared for their victims to fight back. So you’ll have to strike and strike quickly.

Get mad-dog mean. Don’t be like the victims in every teen horror flick, attack the gunman from as many different angles as possible and take him out. The Marquis de Queensberry Rules don’t apply here. Survival, your survival is at stake here. Don’t stop until he’s completely incapacitated or dead.

Get the gunman’s weapon out of his hands and be prepared for follow-on attacks in the case he has other gunmen who come looking for him. The more people involved in attacking a terrorist, the better odds of taking him down and surviving to live another day.

These incidents are happening with increasing frequency today and there is no substitute for preparedness. There will be times that some people will die because there was no way to foresee, prevent or survive some terror attacks. But to survive an on-going one will require a cool head and clear thinking. Because if you lose your composure and the will to resist, you’ll neither win nor live.

(We’re sharing this article found here : https://sofrep.com/82921/green-berets-guide-to-surviving-the-unthinkable-what-to-do-in-a-terrorist-attack/ )

 

 

Originally published on SpecialOperations.com and written by STEVE BALESTRIERI

 

Survival Landscaping

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By Kylene and Jonathan Jones

The cold, hard fact is that it is almost impossible to store enough nutrient rich foods to survive a long term event. Yes, you might be able to stockpile 30 years-worth of wheat, rice, beans, dehydrated foods, and other foundation grains if you have enough room. However, you cannot stockpile fresh fruits and vegetables which provide optimal health, nutrition and go a long way toward improved immune function and disease suppression.

You might think that your next best bet would be to count on identifying edible plants in the wild to supplement your diet. After a taste-test tour eating wild plants, we immediately went and bought more food storage. Edible? Yes. Tasty and filling, not even close. We burned more calories finding the plants than we received by eating them.

According to Marjory Wildcraft of www.thegrownetwork.com, it is just too land intensive to realistically support a family on the hunter-gatherer system. She states: “Let’s start first off with the almost magical dream of the pure hunter/gatherer. I often hear this one from those concerned about a collapse of civilization. Just how much land does it take to support you without destroying all the wildlife and plant populations? How much area do you need in order to live sustainably as a hunter/gatherer? Since there are so few actual hunter/gathers left alive on the planet, and the few places where they do still exist tend to be jungles which look nothing like anything in North America, we will turn to anthropological data. The quick and easy answer is that traditional peoples used on average, about 10 square miles per person. Ten square miles is 6,400 acres – that is for one person.”

So what’s the answer? It just might include creating your very own self-sustaining food supply. Call it survival landscaping, permaculture, sustainable agriculture or whatever you like. The goal is to work with nature to create a truly sustainable system. A garden paradise that requires little or no human intervention once established. Due to the “natural looking” nature of this type of landscape most individuals would never suspect the amount of life-saving food growing in the tangle. Thus protecting your food supplies in plain sight.

The objective is to create an environment which requires very little human intervention once it is established.

The ideal permaculture design produces food year after year without weeding, pruning, tilling, fertilizing or using pesticides and herbicides. The system is perfectly balanced for the local climate. It is possible to accomplish permaculture landscape on a half-acre city lot as well as in a more spacious country environment. Permaculture takes many years to establish and become resilient to changing conditions.

Selection of plants is critical to take best advantage of local climate conditions, ensure natural balance and to extend the harvest throughout the entire growing season. There are a growing number of great reference books to guide you through the process. Many of the authors recommend a more “natural or wild looking” landscape which is perfect for a remote bug out location, but may not be welcomed in a gated community.

Delightful results can also be achieved by applying permaculture principles on a small urban lot that has a more trimmed and controlled appearance. Food does not have to be grown in an orchard or in neat weed-free rows. Even annual vegetables can be creatively interspersed with landscape to create a unique functional beauty. Limited space requires creative solutions. Consider vertical growing possibilities such as arbors, trellises and arches. Permaculture designs allow grapes or other vines to grow right up tree trunks. Container plants can extend your growing area to decks and patios. Use your imagination to produce a stunning, productive yard.

Strategically plant fruit and nut trees. Apple trees come in miniature dwarf, semi-dwarf and standard sizes. There is the perfect size to fit your landscape. Depending on the type and size of the tree, an apple tree can produce hundreds of pounds of apples each year to be stored, dried, or bottled as needed. A walnut tree is a wonderful large shade tree producing up to 150 pounds of nuts annually, providing needed fats, protein and calories. Fruit and nut trees are a long term investment and would supplement your diet and extend your food stores during a prolonged disaster scenario as well as enriching your diet today.

Consider what resources you currently have growing in your yard. Would it be possible to plant grape vines or berry bushes in with your current landscape? Remove a non-productive shrub and replace it with a life-saving nutritional plant? How about including some medicinal or culinary herbs? Those dried beans are going to taste a whole lot better with a few spices. If your current lifestyle does not allow time to harvest your bounty, don’t worry about it. Healthy soil is critical for a successful survival garden. Compost whatever you don’t use along with grass clippings and leaves to build your soil for a time when you might be dependent upon what you can produce on your own land for survival.

As you prepare for the challenges in our future, consider investing in living food sources in addition to your long term dry food stores. The security a full pantry and productive garden provide are worth the time and resources required to achieve them.

• Kylene and Jonathan Jones are authors of The Provident Prepper – A Common-Sense Guide to Preparing for Emergencies. Visit them at www.TheProvidentPrepper.org and www.YourFamilyArk.org.

-Photo found at Google Images

One Man’s Preparedness Journey

Watch this story about Peter Larson (a good friend to TACDA board members) on National Geographic’s TV show “Doomday Preppers”.

Peter Larson is a recognized expert in the field of Prepping. His unique brand of planning, training and preparing helps Peter stand out as a voice of reason amongst conspiracy theorists, renegades, anarchists and all around crazies.

Kennedy on Civil Defense

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The following is a letter from President John F. Kennedy to the members of Congress and read by Stewart Pittman

October 6, 1961

Gentlemen:

I was gratified to learn of the productive meeting of the Committee on Civil Defense of the Governors’ Conference on September 17 in the Pentagon. The basis was well laid for continuing and close cooperation between your committee and all of us concerned with the federal civil defense program.

There is need for a nationwide understanding of what each level of government, each private organization and each citizen can do to bring about and maintain the best attainable protection for the civilian population against the major effects of a thermonuclear attack. Information is in preparation which I will use to inform the American people on what individuals should know and can do for their own protection. In the meantime, your committee may wish to inform the Governors of the goal towards which the Federal Government, the state governments, industry and other institutions in the United States should work.

In simple terms, this goal is to reach for fallout protection for every American as rapidly as possible. Radioactive fallout, extending down-wind for as much as several hundred miles, could account for the major part of the casualties which might result from a thermonuclear attack on an unprotected population. Protection against this threat is within reach of an informed America willing to face the facts and act.

The Federal Government is moving forward to bring into operation fallout shelter space for large groups of people under very austere conditions. Many homeowners, communities and business firms can and will provide more adequate and better located shelter space for their own needs. The Federal Government is backing this effort with a massive dissemination of technical information. In addition, we will inform those who cannot afford costly structures on low-cost methods of improvising shielding against fallout radiation. The people of this country will be urged, by me, by the Governors and by other leaders to do what is within their means.

The state governments have a vital role to play in accelerating attainment of the goal of full fallout protection. Shelter can be provided in new construction of state and local public buildings. State and municipal laws and ordinances can be adapted to encourage private initiative in this effort. State and local leadership in organizing people to prepare, and communities to operate, during and immediately after an attack is a cornerstone of any successful civil defense effort.

I look forward to the closest cooperation between all levels of government in the United States to move rapidly towards this goal. Your committee is making a major contribution in stimulating participation by the state governments in the nationwide civil defense effort.

Sincerely,

JOHN F. KENNEDY

Prepare for a Financial Crisis

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You Must Be Prepared for the Next Financial Crisis

An interview with Bill Bonner, editor, The Bill Bonner Letter – Bill Bonner is an American author of books and articles on economic and financial subjects. He is the founder and president of Agora Publishing, and author of a daily financial column, Diary of a Rogue Economist. Bonner is also co-founder and regular contributor to The Daily Reckoning.

(Bill recently joined Porter on an episode of The Porter Stansberry Show to discuss this potential disaster scenario. Bill recently published a warning that will remind longtime readers of Porter’s “End of America” thesis. But as you’ll read in the excerpt below, Bill is focusing on the risk to the global paper money system…)

Porter Stansberry: So I was just getting ready for this interview, and I came across a very ominous recording where you talked about ATMs not working, gas stations closing, people not being able to get into their banks to cash or deposit checks – sort of the apocalyptic scenario of an end-of-the-world banking crisis. What makes you think that this is something people should be worried about now?

Bill Bonner: Now is now. Now is where we are, but nobody knows when this sort of thing will happen, and when it does happen, it’s inconvenient. I mean, if people were fully prepared for something like this, it wouldn’t happen at all.

But things like this don’t happen that way. They always come as surprises to most people. And so it’s hard to say… The “now” question is tough because I don’t know why now and why not in 10 days or in 10 years.

We’re in a situation where there’s more and more debt in the world. The response to the authorities of the crisis of 2008-2009 was simply to add more debt to a situation that was already caused by too much debt. And so the problem that we had in 2008 was not resolved at all. It was made worse and postponed.

What we’re going to see at some point is a re-enactment of the crisis of 2008-2009, but worse… because there’s more debt. And the interest rates are already at zero now, so they can’t lower rates much more.

So the next time this occurs, it’s going to be much worse, and people have to be prepared for what almost happened last time, which was that the banks closed… and they were ready to shut the ATMs down, when meanwhile, people need cash. And so that’s what I keep saying make sure you have some cash on hand.

Porter Stansberry: Yeah, I had a hard time explaining that message as well. It’s not contradictory to say that we fear a collapse of the dollar and then suggest for you to have some in reserve… Because in the immediate days and weeks following a run on the dollar, that paper currency is going to be very important.

Bill Bonner: Well, yes. In all fairness, there are not that many instances of it, so it’s hard to form an average. But in a banking crisis, which is what we had in 2008 and what we expect now, the banks seize up because they’re going broke.

And people realize it. So their reflex is to go and get their hands on something they can hold onto, and that is cash. You’ve got a bank account, you’ve got money in it, you want to run to the ATM and get that cash out before the ATM runs out of money.

And they will run out of money, because there’s not enough cash in all of the United States to cover the obligations and the needs that people will have.

Porter Stansberry: There’s not enough cash in the United States to cover the liabilities of two banks – Bank of America and JP Morgan.

Bill Bonner: No, no, there’s not much cash because the country has shifted to credit. The whole story of the last 50 years has been the expansion of credit, and credit is what people use.

You’ve got to stand in line at a grocery store, and often the person in front of you is paying with credit. Maybe you are, too. And so when the credit stops, the whole economy comes to a stop.

I think people have to get a lot more sophisticated about money because we are so used to an economy and a society where the money was fairly reliable and you could say…

“Oh, I’ve got cash. I’m not worried about anything. I’ve got cash.” We’d say, “Where is the cash?” “Well, it’s in the bank.”

But having money in the bank is not the same as having cash. When you have cash, you have what they call trustless money. That means you can go and buy stuff with it. But when you have an account in a bank, it means the bank owes you money.

Now, you’ve got a counter party. You’ve got somebody on the other side, and if you study these statements of the banks, the balance sheets of these banks, those banks are all in danger of going broke because they’ve lent so much money to so many flimsy, flaky projects.

And all of that collateral that they’ve got on houses and the money they lent to companies for mergers and acquisitions… the equity… it disappears.

And so all of a sudden, the bank, which has very little in real reserves, is illiquid. It’s illiquid and bankrupt, so you have a credit.

Your bank account is not cash. It’s what you have as a credit against a bankrupt institution. So you’re going to be in big trouble.

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http://www.tweakfeeds.com/financials/heres-why-you-need-to-be-prepared-for-the-next-crisis

If You Are Always Ready, You Never Have to Get Ready!


Barrel of a Gun

By Paul Seyfried

I don’t know where you are reading this—on a desktop computer or mobile device—but for the sake of argument, let’s say a convicted felon is kicking in your door right now. The only weapons you have to fight him off are the items within a 3-foot circle of your current position. How much trouble are you in?

I’ve said it before: If you are more than three seconds away from your primary self-defense weapon, fix that right now.

My primary defensive weapon is a firearm. But that is only a tool. More important is your understanding of the righteous use of violence as it applies to legal self-defense. In short, are you mentally ready to fight? Will active self-defense be your default setting when the time comes? Gear and gadgets do not matter if you are not ready, willing, and able to use them. If, in the face of great and immediate danger, you don’t automatically reach for a weapon, look for cover, and start thinking about your defensive options, you will be well behind your attacker when the fight starts. That’s no good.

Too many people get caught in sequential thinking that goes something like this: What is happening? Is this really happening? This can’t be happening. I don’t believe this is happening.

By the time those thoughts bounce around your head, you are swinging seriously behind the attacker’s fastball.

Right here and right now clear your head of all that crap. Make the decision to accept that bad things happen. They can happen to you. Understand that when you see, feel, or even sense that they are starting to happen, you need to take action. The time for thinking about what is happening has already passed and you need to take some action or get into the fight.

This does not mean that you need to charge into an aggressive confrontation. Taking action can be as simple as crossing the street to put some distance between you and a potential threat. If you carry your firearm in a purse, get your hand on your gun early and be ready to draw if the situation warrants it. Think about taking defensive action. Self-defense is more than fighting, and it starts with the idea that you will someday have to fight.

In self-defense circles we talk about mindset all the time. There is a reason for that. Think about this: Your attacker is a predator. Before he strikes he stalks, assesses the risk, seeks a suitable location, and waits for the most opportune moment. He has planned his attack and counts on the fact that his element of surprise will give him the advantage. To defeat this type of predator, you need to be as vigilant as he is cunning. You need to be prepared. Most importantly, you need to be willing to act with equal violence and aggression to stop the violent assault. If you are standing there flat-footed trying to figure out what is going on, your chances of winning the fight are greatly reduced.

And make no mistake about it. I want you to win the fight. I don’t want you to simply “survive.” This is a fight for your life. You need to prevail. You do that by being prepared.