Sunday, August 05, 2007

Guns -vs- Butter

Just a quick one today.
It’s the age old debate – “Guns –vs- Butter”. It gets to the idea of how one expends finite resources: does one purchase “guns” to ensure one’s security or “butter” to feed one self? If you spend all of your money on guns, you will starve. If you spend all of your money on “butter” someone else will come take it all away from you. So you must achieve a kind of balance.

The same applies to preparedness folks. How much of one is enough? How much of one is too much if we neglect the other? If you are a normal person you will eat every day. If you are living a normal existence, you won’t be shooting people near that often. But we prepare for times that are distinctly “not normal”, don’t we?

Even in those times though, you will want to eat every day. In a survival situation, you want to expend the least amount of effort (calories) for any given result. This is survival economy. The least amount of effort to eat is if you already have the food there, ready to go. Something like a stash of ready to eat chow – it could be MREs, it could be Chunky Beef Stew, it could be peanut butter. As long as it’s there.

You may need to protect yourself. A good way to do that is with a firearm and some ammunition. But here is something some of my gun-nut buddies won’t like: you won’t need and arsenal and a bazillion rounds of ammo.

First off, you can really only fire one gun at a time. You can only carry so many. So having more than just a few carefully chosen pieces is just a hobby expenditure you could have spent on butter (food). If you plan on shooting a lot of ammo at hordes of bad guys bent on taking your chow I would suggest you reevaluate your “plan”. Move somewhere where there are less people, be more discreet, or something. See, if you shoot a thousand rounds at bad guys – you are going to get at least several hundred rounds directed back at you in return. Some of those could hurt….

So if you are bound and determined to spend some of your butter money on another battle pack of .308 ammo, I would suggest you also buy some medical supplies. You do know how to use them, right? I’m talking long–term care here. I mean, if you are fending the hordes off of your MRE stash, there probably aren’t a lot of hospitals open for business.

Bottom line – too many of my friends are constantly buying more ammo or another gun instead of more canned goods, or rice, or peanut butter, or…

I fear that some of them could end up being a problem in that a well armed starving man is a problem. Some of those problems may exist. But you still won’t need a bazillion rounds to deal with them. Most of those problems will sort themselves out fairly quickly.

By all means – arm yourselves. I’m with you. But think it through – you are going to need more butter than guns.

If you have any comments I’d love to hear them.
If they really interest me, I may even post them.
You can reach me at

Prepared Americans for a Strong America


At 5/8/07 15:47, Blogger viridari said...

You're absolutely right on this. Most SHTF experiences require food and water. A gun, any gun, will do and probably won't be used (but quite possibly be displayed depending on the circumstances).

In my own SHTF a few years back, I had a closet full of guns and ammo but only enough water to get through two days. We didn't have any utilities, including fresh water, for three weeks.

Not a shot was fired. No gun was needed throughout the ordeal.

For the $300 you might spend on a case of ammo, you can get hundreds of pounds of flour and rice.

As far as MRE's go, I used to be a believer in those but now I like Mountain House meals for the bug-in supply. They are actually very tasty, very affordable, and require only a little hot water to prepare. They are good enough to cycle through the regular meal plan so that you aren't faced with the prospect of eating something new & unfamiliar when you come upon hard times.

At 7/8/07 09:40, Blogger Youngblood said...

I'm perfectly content with having one of each of what I consider to be the three "classes" of civilian firearms. Versatile firearm needs are pretty well met with a pistol, a shotgun, and a rifle, and that's good because I don't want to be carrying any more than that. Realistically the pistol and shotgun are interchangeable, you could even simplify it to a long-range and short-range weapon. Past that and some ammo, I think any other resources would be better spent on butter and other security accoutrements for the home(solid doors,no-break film for the windows, advanced locks, outdoor lighting).

At 17/10/07 18:34, Blogger Carlos L. Martillo said...

This is a great post; looking at an acqaintances substantial armory, I mentioned he might want to invest in a few things to eat. "Hell man, I got the guns, so I can get all the food I want!" To which I replied " that guy with the food you're gonna rob, I bet he has a gun, too. Now: who can outwait who?"
The look on his face...


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