Archive for the 'News' Category
Standard & Poor’s announced Friday night that it has downgraded the United States credit rating for the first time, dealing a huge symbolic blow to the world’s economic superpower in what was a sharply worded critique of the American political system.
Lowering the nation’s rating one-notch below AAA, the credit rating company said “political brinkmanship” in the debate over the debt had made the U.S. government’s ability to manage its finances “less stable, less effective and less predictable.”
This probably should have happened years ago, realistically. The credit agencies likely have had good reasons for delaying this, and I imagine there was some livley debate at the S&P before this decision was made. Jim Rawles of Survival Blog earlier this week (check the link for possible consequences) predicted other credit agencies would immediately follow any downgrades. However it they will delay;
Other credit rating agencies — Moody’s Investors Service and Fitch Ratings — have decided not to downgrade the United States credit rating. But they’ve warned that, if the economy deteriorates significantly or the government does not take additional steps to tame the debt, they could move to downgrade too.
U.S. Treasury securities, once undisputedly the safest investment in the world, are now rated lower than bonds issued by countries such as the United Kingdom, Germany, France or Canada.
The move is likely to raise borrowing costs eventually for the American government, companies and consumers.
Seems clear we’re on the downward slope with no realistic hope for actual recovery. There may be upticks, but nothing that has a chance to halt the slow collapse we’re in. As the son of Arsenius so aptly put it recently, we’re “circling the drain.”
Most survivalists/preppers have been keenly aware of the potential consequences for America’s uncontrolled spending spree over the past several decades, and that’s in fact a main reason to prepare for collapse for some of us. But mainstream media (MSM) didn’t often carry related stories or focus on the likely consequences, it was more the fringe media. MSM still largely stays away from alarmist stories, but as the debate in congress over deficit spending has picked up, so has coverage of the dire financial straits the U.S. is really in.
For example; US Going Same Route as Greece, Portugal: Economist from CNBC, U.S. Fiscal Meltdown in Spitting Distance: Laurence Kotlikoff from Bloomberg, and US lacks credibility on debt, says IMF from the Financial Times. Granted you’re not likely to see articles like 5 Things That Will Happen To You When America Goes Bankrupt from Townhall, but coverage is increasing awareness among the non-survivalist masses.
It’s a good idea to have a radio that is able to receive several bands (FM/AM/SW) as part of your emergency preparedness equipment. While we have some battery operated radios around the house, they take C or D cell batteries are aren’t suitable for the bug out bag (BoB) due to weight and size. So after doing a lot of research and reading many reviews, I recently purchased a Grundig G6 Aviator Buzz Aldrin Edition AM/FM, Aircraft band and Shortwave Radio, new for about $90 on eBay.
Besides being able to receive shortwave (SW), another real draw was the size (see the photo) and weight (only 7.3 oz) since it will be included in my BoB. Some other nice features are a long battery life, it uses AA batteries (everything in my BoB uses AA or AAA only), if using the included power cable it will actually charge rechargeable batteries, and the ability to receive single side band (SSB) transmissions.
This is the first radio I’ve owned that can pick up shortwave radio (1711-30000 KHz), and this one also receives the aircraft band (117-137 MHz). The aircraft band wasn’t something I was interested in, it was just included.
If you’re a novice to the SW bands as I am, learning to use this or any SW radio effectively will take some reading and some time fiddling with it. So far I’ve picked up a lot of Spanish stations, some Canadian, perhaps some in Europe, and one in Chinese but who knows where it’s actually being broadcast from. Five to 10 minutes a night has helped with figuring things out.
Many of the reviews I read talked about the G6s FM “sensitivity,” or being able to pick up many FM stations. I haven’t found this to be the case as I can’t pick up several stations I listed to while driving. The single side band (SSB) feature is supposed to allow listening in on HAM operators, but I haven’t had any luck with that yet.
But I’m not disappointed as it does what I want it to, and due to the incredibly slight size and weight. Probably I’ll need to purchase an external antenna at some point to pick up the wider range of stations.
The Grundig G6, or probably any radio in this class, is a good choice for daily use, emergencies, and the BoB. Good luck!