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Bill and Brian Take On The New York Times – Episode 127

Despite all the pleas to the general public to be prepared, most people don’t think disaster will strike them. They’ll mumble about the need to lay in some supplies just in case “something” happens and then never do it. They’ll go about their day, blissfully in denial about the ability of life to be transformed from idyllic to monstrous in the blink of an eye.

Millions of people are still without power up and down the east coat in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy. The death toll has risen to 70 people who have died because of the storm. People who scoffed at being prepared are facing empty store shelves, no public utilities, and are realizing that entire emergency plans based on dialing “911” are simply not adequate.

Off The Grid Radio
Ep 127
Release Date November 1, 2012

Brian:   Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Off The Grid News—the radio version of I’m Brian Brawdy, here today with Mr. Bill Heid. Bill, we have a very special show today.

Bill:      A lot to talk about, Brian.

Brian:   Well, not only that but if you don’t mind—if I could just take 30 quick seconds here?

Bill:      Jump in.

Brian:   You know I dig the content that we put out. I like the idea, the message that you and I work on, everyone here that helps to produce the show. But today’s show is a show that I think our listeners should email the link to their five favorite people, their seven closest family members—however you want to do it—because we’re recording this show while high tide is still affecting New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Long Island in New York. So this show is going to be about what you could do in order to be able to plan in an advance of an emergency. Now as you know, I spent a good bit of time in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina—30-foot wall of water.

Well, in lower Manhattan—the Battery Park—a 13-15 foot wall of water with the storm surge and the full moon and the tide. You talk about a perfect storm. I’d hope people listening today would email this link because I honestly believe in my heart that if people are privy to the information you and I are going to discuss over the next hour, that they don’t have to be in harm’s way. So I think you should take this link, send it to your favorite people in the world. Send it to family members. Send it to whoever because this is the type of information that I can tell you—of the millions of people that have been affected by Hurricane Sandy—a lot of them wished they had listened to the advice you and I gave last year that we gave when we traveled to do Good Morning America and stuff like that. I bet they wish they had listened, don’t you?

Bill:      Well, I think it’s important information. You know, I think… As we were talking about this morning Brian, I think the thing is no one thinks that something is going to happen to them.

Brian:   Sure.

Bill:      And so it’s very, very easy just to go on with your life and pretend that nothing bad could ever happen. But clearly bad things can happen and events change and boy, sometimes they change rapidly. Like in Katrina when that water started coming up, just within a couple hours you had 20-foot difference and I heard some of the newscasters were counting that last night. Fortunately for New Yorkers, it wasn’t quite as dramatic but the idea is are you ready for something? Are you ready for an event? Are you ready for some kind of issue—something that can happen that sort of knocks you off your normalcy?

Brian:   Sure. Out of your game.

Bill:      Off your game. And so that’s what I think we want to talk about today and it’s not as if we are saying, “I told you so” to people. I think there are a lot of people in New York that just—“It’s going to be fine.” Since it’s not Friday—since it’s only Tuesday that we’re doing this, released on Friday—we don’t know how this whole thing is going to turn out. We know for the first couple days that being without power, most folks have enough food to just sort of get by. It’s on that third, fourth, fifth day that panic starts to strike. There have already been articles written about this—about what happens if you can’t get to the grocery store? What happens if you can’t get gas? What happens if you don’t have any power? And then different people—different types of people—the darker side of personalities come out.

Brian:   Sure.

Bill:      And I think… I saw… This was interesting too. Maybe you’ll want to comment on this. But I think gangs were already planning on how to loot. And of course really, we don’t know what’s going on. We have friends in New York—even friends with a lot of backup power equipment—and we can’t even get a hold of because the cell systems are down. So pray tell what would happen if you can’t use your cell phone? That’s a shock to a lot of people but you’ve got to play these things through your mind—what would happen if you didn’t have your cell phone, if you didn’t have your power, if you couldn’t get to where you want to go?

Brian:   And Bill, water. Everyone says, “Oh, we lost our power. That will be okay.” How are you getting your water? There isn’t a well in New York City that doesn’t pump its water with the aid of electricity. People said last year when we did Good Morning America, I said, “Look, best thing you can do right now—wait until commercial break—don’t turn off your TV right now. Wait until commercial break. Go scrub out your bathtub real quick. Rinse it out—nice hot water, clean—bleach if you want it. They’re your feet. You decide. But clean it out to the degree that you can and then fill it with water because when they kill the power, you don’t have any water.”

And as you know, we can go… I can go longer than you just because of my size but most of us can go a week to ten days without food but you don’t want to go 48 hours without water and there were all kinds of folks this morning waking up in Manhattan, in Brooklyn, in Queens, out into Suffolk County, in Connecticut, in New Jersey, Atlantic Shore—they said the boardwalk is gone now—a lot of people waking up thirsty, thinking they’re going to run over, flip the switch, the light’s going to come on, thinking they’re going to run over to the tap, turn it on and water is going to come out.

Bill:      It’s so easy to get used to things the way they are and just make an assumption about life in the future. And no one is saying that this is going to go on and on and on forever but boy, if it does go on for more than three or four days, you’re going to start to see the fringe of this—of behavior—start to turn dark, as I said—start to turn ugly. And the way around all this of course, that we advocate all the time, is not only are you self-reliant—you’ve got stuff for yourself and your family—but because you have prepared, because you have thought this through, you also save some stuff up for your neighbor because you know that he didn’t…

Brian:   Sure.

Bill:      That’s grace on some level, right?

Brian:   Absolutely.

Bill:      Just plain grace.

Brian:   Sure.

Bill:      And so you save some stuff up for him, her, families—whatever—because you know that not everybody is going to prepare. And it will be great to see some stories. New Yorkers, as crazy as they are…

Brian:   Thank you very much.

Bill:      Yeah, you’ve lived there. As crazy as they are, every time there is an event in New York, we do seem to see some heroes come out of that event and we see there are a lot of heroes and obviously in their fire department, police department and you will see some heroics everywhere but I kind of can’t wait to hear those stories as well because it’s always encouraging to me to see, in a world that seems so troubled, that people will still go out on the line for each other.

Brian:   Can I give you an aside?

Bill:      Yeah.

Brian:   And I don’t know how… I’d love to get your comment on it. But I saw this yesterday and regardless of what you think about war, regardless of what you think about the government and the military, watching those military folks guard the tomb of the unknown soldier yesterday in Washington—where everything else Bill, was shut down—everything was shut down but they were out…

Bill:      That’s touching.

Brian:   It was touching. I mean I stopped kind of dead in my tracks and looked at that. The winds, the rain, the temperatures and it said like they haven’t missed a day in decades. But isn’t that kind of cool? When you talk about honor—like you said people in New York, they’ll rise, there will be police officers, there will be firemen, there will be paramedics, there will be regular citizens, regular folks that will reach out to help other people—but when I saw that yesterday, those guys are still out there, braving the wind, the cold and the rain to guard that tomb. And in the same week when we find out well, a lot of the votes coming from overseas, from Afghanistan and Iraq and our military bases—“Oh, those ballots were…” Were they lost or caught on fire or…?

Bill:      Yeah, our troops. All their ballots always get lost.

Brian:   It all gets lost. Yeah. And so you have that slap in the face but then you see these guys standing there to protect and honor the tomb of the Unknown Soldier. I just… I was just moved by it. I thought it was great.

Bill:      Here is an article on CBS, Brian. This is CBS. This isn’t Alex Jones or Steve Quail or something. Resident warns people there will be fighting in the streets for gas and food in Sandy’s wake.

Brian:   Yep.

Bill:      That’s a CBS article.

Brian:   Yep. Well, you know Bill, why I’m here. However, many years ago now in Hurricane Katrina, I was a reporter for CBS. I was sent to cover the aftermath of what happened in that region of our country. Right? People say, “Oh, it could never happen in our country.” I was sent to cover that and it changed me. Came back, resigned and I’ve been talking about emergency preparedness, survival—that kind of thing—ever since. I witnessed that first hand. I watched people being robbed for their generators.

Bill:      It really changed your life, didn’t it?

Brian:   It certainly changed my life. Yeah, I left that because if you’re waiting—and we’re going to introduce a new segment—I just want to make sure Jeremy will do like some really cool music for it and everything else. But we’re doing a new segment this morning where—and you’re welcome to throw your name on it if you like because I don’t want to get you in trouble—but it’s… I hope it is “Brian and Bill battle the New York Times.” Now if you don’t want your name on it, we’ll just leave it as “Brian battles the New York Times.”

But we have this story this morning. What’s the exact headline? Oh, “Big storm requires big government.” Big government did nothing to help the people in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina—nothing. You might say, “Afterwards they came in and they cleared the streets. They did this and that.” But in that moment when your life is threatened, there is not a government on the face of the planet that can stand there and block you from the effects of a Frankenstorm—of a Katrina or a Sandy—not a government on the face of the planet. Not one we’ve ever had nor could even conceive of can stop Mother Nature when she gets worked up.

Bill:      Well, and you compare that to just folks—whether it’s through churches or whatever—that are just willing to help each other out for free. Keep in mind these agencies that you’re paying—you’re paying people $80,000 or $100,000 a year to come and pay you and they of course have supervisors and those supervisors have supervisors and on and on and on—and so one of the reasons government is so inefficient is because it’s so clogged up with management and it just lends… It just… Big government—it lends itself to piling on, adding on.

I’ll tell you something. Last night I was watching a little bit of this and I believe it was from New Jersey—and I can’t remember which channel I was watching, Brian—but they had a guest on there and he was an emergency management officer from someplace or perhaps the governor—I can’t remember… No, it wasn’t Christie. It was somebody and he basically said, “Don’t worry. It doesn’t matter how much damage– $10 billion, $20 billion—we’ll just fix it. We’ll just replace it. So frankly, I’m not worried at all.” And I thought, “That’s unbelievable that someone that says there are no limits to… There is no bottom line. There is no point at which you’ve spent all the money and there’s nothing left”—totally unwilling to recognize a point that, “Wow, this could have massive repercussions on our country.” Is there? I mean does this well go on and on forever? Can you spend $20 billion on a storm and the floodways are flooded and I know this is a huge…?

Brian:   That’s a great way of putting them now—they’re not subways anymore—they’re called floodways. Yeah, I mean look—it makes it easy for people in New York to get around, right?

Bill:      It’s like Venice.

Brian:   Yeah, and now it made it easy for the East River to get around so—and the Atlantic Ocean to get around—so it’s a floodway. That’s…

Bill:      It’s a floodway but nonetheless, it’s just expensive to sort of figure all this out and I know there is taxpayer money to do this but it seemed like these agencies were already behind. It seemed like New York was already in a hole. It seemed like FEMA was already billions of dollars in debt. And now there is a new event and there is just no end to it.

Brian:   Well, when you print the money, there is no end to it, right? Doesn’t mean that it’s smart to do but when you print the money and you have big government types going, “Don’t worry. I don’t worry if it’s $10 billion or $20 billion. We’ll be able to do it,” when you own the printing press I reckon you don’t worry about money all that much. The rest of us look at it and go, “Well, someone has got to pay it back. It’s going to affect us somehow,” right? And maybe the New York Times saying, “Look, when it comes to big storms, big government is a necessity after the fact” but you and I both know that what we are all about it teaching people how to be prepared in advance. Look, and I’ve been saying this since… I said this on air from Katrina—if you are waiting on the government to ride in on a white horse and save you, you’re backing the wrong pony.

Bill:      Or you can’t save eight million people simultaneously.

Brian:   You can’t. Right.

Bill:      That’s too much to ask any emergency responder. That’s crazy.

Brian:   Right. Absolutely. And that’s why we have to do it for ourselves. And like you said, well we don’t want to point fingers and we don’t want to say, “Oh, you should have listened to us” but if you have friends that could benefit from the remainder of this show when we talk about what you could do—what you and I would do if they dropped… If we had… If we could get our gear in 24 hours before Sandy hit, what would you and I do? How would we make it work? How would we be able to survive?

Bill:      Here’s… Let me… Can I bring something up that’s important?

Brian:   Sure.

Bill:      And it’s… This may sound like a shameless pitch and you can throw things at me from where you’re at if you feel like I’m crossing the line in any sense. But think about the idea of New York. Where is New York built? Not like LA that goes out—it goes up into the air. And you can’t run… So you’re asking me—one of the things—obviously, I’d make sure everybody had—if I had my druthers—you want to have a week’s supply of food and you want to have a water filter, right?

Brian:   Sure.

Bill:      I’d even filter that bathtub water out.

Brian:   Sure.

Bill:      You can make gin out of that but I wouldn’t drink it directly. So I’d filter that water. I’d make sure I had some food. Heat’s always important—crisis cooker or something—we have those that we sell that can use a lot of different types of fuel. But I think to sort of make things civilized in your world, you do need electricity and having a solar generator at an apartment—you can’t… Let’s face it. You can’t run a gas generator.

Brian:   Right.

Bill:      So I think this is one of those things that really, for New Yorkers, a solar generator or a Power Source and especially if you use LED bulbs in it—you can keep your apartment lit for a week if the sun never did come out, just with the power that’s available there. It’s not a nuclear power plant. No one’s trying to say it’s going to run everything for you. But I think for me, I look at that solar generator and I say that’s an important piece of equipment because being able to turn the lights on is the difference between, as we’ve said, having people panic and having people not panic. Sometimes just having light is all the difference in the world and a little radio or run a small TV or whatever. It just becomes a must-have, given how we’ve all been conditioned.

Brian:   Right. And you think about it—Bill, you have grandkids. Your kids are a little older so maybe not a big deal but I have young kids. In a panicked situation, if I can make sure they have their Kindle, if I can make sure they can power up their little Game Boy or their little… these little handheld things that they’re constantly playing on, then plug it into the—as I’ve said before—point, plug, power it up, put the solar panel at the window, get some juice flowing in. If you can get their gear powered up, one—it reduces their stress and two—and just as importantly—it allows you to focus your attention on everything else that’s got going on.

Imagine driving down the street. You ever do this, Bill—you’re driving to get somewhere and your kids are in the backseat just screaming? And you find out you’re paying more attention to them because your head is just going to explode from all the “Oh, Parker touched me!  Oh, Paige touched me!  Dad, he’s looking at me!  Dad, Paige…” And you just go nuts. Well, imagine in an emergency situation. If your kids aren’t preoccupied with their normal, everyday little electronics or maybe even a little lamp to read books—mine do that—you don’t have the energy to focus on everything else you have to do to keep your family safe and alive. You don’t… You and me, as trained as we are to do it, can’t do it if you’ve got two banshees screaming because their Kindle doesn’t work.

Bill:      Can I throw this in too? Jeremy and I were talking to one of our friends who lives in Annapolis and she was hunkering down and of course the last time Irene came through, she was able to use the Power Source to keep her basement dry when all of her neighbors had a wet basement—so she kept her sump pump going—and she was proud of that. And we even did a show talking to her. But the comment that she made to us yesterday—it was really before the storm—we called her in the morning because we knew it was going to be a tough day for her so we talked to her in the morning and she was trying to get some stuff done but she said… I go, “Well, stay safe” and she said, “We will” but she said, “The real issue is if everybody can keep from killing each other” and what she meant by that was a little bit about what you said—so there is what’s going on inside the house—“Can we all stay sane? Can we all stay rational? Can we all keep our heads?”

And then she went on to say that what really goes on is in the community, people start to get tense between each other as well. And what happened in her community during Irene that created a lot of tension was neighbors running gas generators and people not being able to sleep—because remember, there is no real background noise anymore—it’s all totally quiet except the gas generators and you run out of gas, you get manic—“Can I borrow some gas?” “I don’t have enough for mine.” “Well wait, why do you get to keep all your gas?” people say to each other. “Well, because I bought it before.”

Brian:   “Silly boy.”

Bill:      “Silly me. I should have bought gas for both of us.” And maybe that’s what you have to do but she really does recognize that there is a tension that starts to exist and really, it’s probably almost nonexistent today. Tomorrow it will be different. The next day and every day, it gets ratcheted up 10-15% and the people that don’t… that didn’t prepare, all of a sudden have to start borrowing from the people that did and that’s where it all kind of goes south sometimes.

Brian:   Well, once you can’t borrow anymore and you need the bling—you need those things that… That’s why… You know, it’s horrible acting—horrible, horrible acting—but I happened to stumble across last night a show called Revolution. Have you seen this one yet Bill, on NBC where the power goes out?

Bill:      Sure. Sure.

Brian:   Yeah, it’s just horrible acting but a pretty interesting point is how people start to turn on each other, how when there is no law enforcement, there is no government—and look, I’m an ex-New York cop so my ability to figure out how quickly it’s going to tip and people are going to start to turn on each other—I wish we weren’t that way but we are. So for me, I would tell you if I were going to secure a room Bill—and you mentioned the food, you mentioned the water, you mentioned the Power Source—Jeramy, what are the names of those locks?

Jeramy:            Heavy metal locks.

Brian:   Heavy metal locks.

Bill:      Some kind of extra security?

Brian:   Absolutely—on your front door. If you live in a high rise, absolutely because these people—and heaven forbid if there are bad guys that get into a building—they can’t use the elevator; they’re going to use the staircases and so they have kind of a captive audience, right? I mean it’s just Bad Guy 101—if you want to corral everyone, what do you do? You control the point in and the point out, right? So I’d invest in a nice heavy-duty lock. I mean a real heavy-duty lock. People go, “Oh, don’t worry. I’ve got a deadbolt on my front door,” which would take you and I about six seconds. And that’s only because we stopped to look back and go, “Wow, can you believe it only took us four seconds to kick in that door?” and then we celebrated for a couple seconds going, “Just how crappy was that deadbolt lock anyways?” you know what I mean?

These are little things that people don’t think about because, as you said to start the show, it’s never going to happen to them. Are your doors secured? Are your windows secured? Do you have drapes that cover your windows? So if you’re underground or second or third story floor and you do have light or you do have something you think other people are going to want, can you block the view from outside? Little things like that that I don’t think folks pay attention to because they’re like, “Oh, don’t worry. I’ll just call 911.” There’s no cell service this morning in New York. And let me tell you—if you can find a 911 operator whose command center isn’t underwater, they’re not sending anybody for you.

Every fireman in the city of New York is fighting that blaze where they lost 80 houses overnight. I mean there are companies from all over New York doing it. There is no paramedic coming for you. They are too busy plucking people off of roofs, trying to get to people in kayaks. So if your plan is dialing 911, you’ve got to have a better plan than that. And that’s—like you said—it’s not to take away from the honorable firefighters and paramedics and police officers. There are just not enough of them. So what can you do in advance? You get a great lock. You have the ability—as you say—to filter water. The food—that food is really tasty stuff—so you’ve got that food. We’re not talking about like cans of beans and rice and all of that stuff.

Bill:      Although that’s better than nothing.

Brian:   It’s better than nothing—agreed—but if you look at like soup bean survival and some of the other things we have, you’d do fine locked in your apartment for a week to ten days if you just had a little bit of a plan.

Bill:      Yeah.

Brian:   No reason to panic if you have the plan. And you and I are all about a plan.

Bill:      And don’t flash the plan, right?

Brian:   Don’t flash the bling.

Bill:      And I think that’s a huge deal because I think you really do have to sort of be—what’s the right word—sort of judicious with respect to how much you have got and how much you don’t have.

Brian:   Well, remember our one friend that one time in Belize? Our friend—we won’t mention his name—but he said, “Look, I don’t tell anybody anything. I’d appreciate you never mention that…” Remember sitting at dinner and he was like, “I don’t have enough for my cul-de-sac. Nobody in my neighborhood knows that I have…”

Bill:      Yeah. He was another Special Forces guy, if you remember.

Brian:   Yeah, that’s right.

Bill:      If you remember, when we met with him—a retired Special Forces guy—and he was very careful about what he told everybody that he had. A very generous man, if you remember—a very nice man.

Brian:   Yep. Absolutely. Nice guy. Great guy. But he was really… held his cards until we sat with him for a little while and he’d say, “Look, it’s all about the bling.”

Bill:      So it almost requires a little bit of a military approach. In other words, you do have a strategic, tactical mindset here going into something like this to really stay on top, to sort of… in order to be helping others. And I think the point you made about the kids earlier—I’ll take and develop at the next level—in other words, if you have got your bases covered the same way you’ve had your bases covered if your kids have something to do, you are able to go out and help other people.

Brian:   Sure.

Bill:      But if you’re busy trying to work your own business because you ain’t got, because you hadn’t planned—then you’ve got enough internal problems that you’re not going to be able to help your neighbor.

Brian:   Right. And like you said before, you have to be almost like a military—almost like a tactical awareness plan. The bad guys are going to use a tactical awareness plan. Don’t kid yourself. What did you tell me this morning—that they are collaborating on Twitter?

Bill:      Sure.

Brian:   Didn’t you say you read that article where the bad guys are using…? What are they using? They’re using coms, right? They’re using communication ports. So they are setting up a tactical plan on how they’re going to do it. So the bad guys are looking at it with a militaristic mindset. They know how they are going to come and get what they need, what they want. So you and I aren’t saying that you have to put on a bandana and buy a big Bowie Rambo knife or any of the rest of it. You don’t need that kind of military tactical awareness. But do you have a plan? Do you have a solar generator? Do you have the ability to filter water? Do you have some food? Do you have some emergency first aid kits? Would you even know how to do CPR if you had to? Would you know how to stop a gaping wound? Just the little things like that.

Bill:      And you remember, this is not a big city thing alone. People are people, wherever you put them. I remember a while back we had Porter Stansberry on and he was talking about his parents having their house robbed—I think it was a house—in a very, very small, sanguine community—something that you would see like in Vermont, with the picture of the church steeple and the fall leaves and everything. And yet—push people at a certain level—at some point, tipping point happens and when they run out, as they run out, they begin to take action.

Brian:   Absolutely. And remember, bad guys are predators, right? So what’s a predator going to do? Is a predator going to go and look for what it needs in a crowded, all kinds of other predators, all kinds of other animals, all kinds of this—or is a predator going to pull back and go, “Hmm. Maybe one of those sleepy little communities—maybe I’ll go where there is only one cop on for 100 square miles and they change shifts every day at 3:45 in the afternoon. So I’ll pick a house 40 miles from the police department at 3:45 because then I know I’ve got at least 45 minutes to clean the place out.” I mean bad guys… A lot of bad guys Bill, as you and I have discussed—they’re not bad guys because they’re stupid, right? This concept of the bumbling criminal—not really so much so—some of these bad guys are pretty cunning.

Bill:      I would say Vladimir Ilyich Lenin had a very high IQ and probably—I’m not sure about the old paper hangar from Germany—but I know a lot of guys, as you say, are really, really sharp and yet there is something about their soul that’s not right.

Brian:   Right. Sure.

Bill:      You and I have been talking about this for the last couple weeks—what is it? Sometimes people… Maybe George Thorogood got it—maybe they were born under a bad sign.

Brian:   Maybe so.

Bill:      I jest, in a sense. But I’m just saying, that’s a whole discussion—why are some people bad and some people less bad and some people and good and what makes a hero? What makes a fireman say, “I don’t care. I’m going to risk my life” while another fireman is kind of backpedaling a little bit in the same cloud of dust, in the same fire. There is just… Things come out of us and they’re sometimes difficult to explain. Frankly, I’m glad we can’t explain some of that because it adds to life but…

Brian:   I love what you say—it’s not our pay grade—or that’s above our pay grade.

Bill:      That’s above our pay grade.

Brian:   It’s above our pay grade. But how can you be a hero or a heroine to your own family when you know an emergency is coming? You have a plan, right?

Bill:      It sure makes it a lot easier. And we shouldn’t always have to be heroes in the sense of eleventh hour sort of antics. We’re talking about being a hero in the sense that we thought through something enough to sort of get ready and that’s just as much being a hero as it is having to scale some mountaintop or do something to save a cat or whatever it is.

Brian:   If you have a husband, a wife, kids, grandkids, elderly parents living with you—if your whole plan is calling 911, I think they have a right to look at you and go, “That’s your plan?” You’re a lot nicer guy than I am. We talk about this all the time but you don’t want to point fingers at people but look—if you are in harm’s way this morning and you didn’t think to cultivate a plan in advance, you share some of that responsibility. It’s not like in this day and age you can’t figure out how to do CPR, how to get a first aid kit, for goodness sakes how to get a couple gallons—jugs—of water and put them in the fridge or store them under the bed. It’s not like there isn’t all kinds of information and shows out there now.

We talked about this Revolution last night. I don’t know—the heavyset, bearded guy couldn’t start a fire using a flint, couldn’t defend himself. He was terribly wealthy and when it hit, he couldn’t navigate. There wasn’t anything he could do. So he ended up leaving his wife because he couldn’t protect her. He knew the other guys in the gang would be better at protecting her than he would be so he up and boogies. So the point being, in this day and age with the internet, with Google, with the books, with the gear—as we call it, “gear to get,” there is really no excuse to have your sole fall back plan be dialing 911.

Bill:      Well, and we do things… I totally concur and we do things… Sometimes I say too, when we go do our promotions—and again, this is like talking about a shameless pitch—but a lot of times I’ll say to you when we’re sitting around brainstorming—“How can we make this deal so good to be true that somebody just has to look at it and say, ‘I’m going to do that’?” And we did that with this—what was it—fall… the…

Brian:   Truckload, right? Is that the one we’re talking about?


Brian:   Fall Truckload.

Bill:      Where we gave away the fort and we still… We sold 60. We created 100 packages because we were going to run out of locks, I think.

Brian:   Right.

Bill:      So we created 100 packages. I think we’ve sold 63.

Brian:   Great.

Bill:      I don’t know how many are left. I know we’ve been selling them because of the storm. So that’s a good website for anybody that wants a deal on something, understands what we’ve been saying, maybe has put it off a little bit but now the storm made them think, “Wow, maybe that could happen to me.” I don’t know how fast we could—if you’re in New York City—it might be a week before we can get it to you so I’m not sure that’s the total solution if you are in peril right now.

Brian:   But there is another Sandy coming, Bill.

Bill:      There is always another Sandy coming.

Brian:   There is always another Sandy. She’s always knocking at the door—or he is always knocking at the door—I don’t want to… Everyone was all upset that—I heard a radio show the other day—they go, “Well, why do the worst hurricanes always come with nice people’s names?” So we don’t want to slam Sandys that are out there but there is another Sandy coming. There always is. That’s the beauty of life is that there is always a challenge ahead but that we were able to get…

You know Bill, you said to me last week that sometimes when people… when I’m not around people say to you—“How do you think Brian gets the energy?” or “When Brian does the videos, how does it happen?” I go back to that Emerson quote that I shared with you years ago and the poem is entitled “Success.” A lot of people recognize it because the opening line is “To laugh often and much.”

Bill:      Sure.

Brian:   But the closing line, to me, is the biggest line and it’s what I think you do at your company—at Solutions From Science—and what you do with the and everything else. The final sentence is “To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived, this is to have succeeded.”

Bill:      I hope that’s the case. I hope people take advantage of this because we basically in this sale gave away $1,700 worth of stuff—gear—that we have that we think is valuable—gear that you have just been describing—to offset the cost of it, to make it in essence almost at no cost. We wanted to make it just go over the top because we want people to take simple steps towards becoming self-reliant.

Brian:   It’s good credit, it’s good karma—whatever term you want to use—but we work really hard here to make sure that at least one life can breathe easier.

Bill:      And the calls that we get—let’s talk about that for a second.

Brian:   Sure.

Bill:      The calls that we get, the people that we talk to, the people that Facebook us, the people that just sort of after they’ve gotten a unit get back to us and talk about just how it’s helped them—and we have our own websites and I don’t even know the name of them—remember the one, Jeremy, where we have all of the YouTubes? And it’s just person after person after person after person after person talking about “Well, this is how I use it” and “This is what it does for me” and it’s amazing…

Brian:   Groovy. That’s great.

Bill:      …to go through and to hear those stories and it does give you a sense of satisfaction knowing that… It has to be commerce. We have to pay our bills. We’ve got employees. We have to keep our lights on and all of these things that we do but it’s really gratifying to know that someone has said someplace, “Hey, I couldn’t have made it without this” or “I used this in this way” and we all smile and go, “Wow, that was worth it.”

Brian:   That was worth it. Well, and doctors have to pay their bills. Dentists have to pay the receptionist, right? And so it’s not like anyone can say, “Oh, well in terms of making it a sale, it’s about the profit.” Well, not really. I mean you can help someone breathe easier and in order to be able to keep spreading that message of self-reliance…

Bill:      Well, we’re not the government.

Brian:   Right.

Bill:      We’re not the government. We can’t steal money from people so we have to sort of create an economic transaction that we think is palatable, good for both sides and that’s what we’ve attempted to do. Speaking of perfect storms, on the way over here to the studio we were walking and talking—I don’t know how much time we’ve got—a few minutes. But we were walking and talking about the election. Now I’m sure this storm will be part of this election and maybe it… This is the last show we’ll do before the election and I’m sure that some things could happen out of the fallout from this that can sway the election one way or the other. One interesting thing is who all needs money and how fast can people get it to them?

And I think there is no way Romney could say, “No, I wouldn’t print up as much money as it takes. I wouldn’t print up $20 billion to fix X in a storm.” That’s politically untenable. There is no way that he can say that. So both parties will be sort of pandering and talking about how much government should do for everybody. And we also talked about what can happen… You read me a Michael Moore quote this morning that really, we can’t even—because our audience—we respect your moral integrity and we can’t even read that quote. But what was Michael Moore saying if Romney won that he was going to do?

Brian:   Basically—sparing the vernacular—he was going to make sure that Romney paid if he won the election—that and the folks over there, at least from the quote from the report, said that Michael Moore was not at all happy with the prospect that the President could lose and that he was going to do what he could to make sure… And people probably can just go… If you Googled “Michael Moore features dirty-mouthed old people lambasting Republicans and Romney”—so I think you could Google it and that way you can read all the language yourself. I don’t know if we could put it out if we said those words. I mean even if we wanted to, I don’t think we could put that out.

Bill:      And you know, we both try to be a little bit apolitical because I think that the Republicans have become so liberal, it’s hard for me to be a good Republican, but you don’t hear the Republicans threatening to riot, threatening to burn things down, right? I mean, think about it. It’s amazing that we are in a place where hey, if our side loses here is how much we want this, right?

Brian:   You know Bill, I was going to ask you that. I was going to call you…

Bill:      Burn your country down.

Brian:   But look in San Francisco. They win the World Series. What is it—and I don’t want you to have to do the whole revolt of the masses—we’re not going to go into that philosophical debate. But you win the World Series. You sweep Detroit and you celebrate by torching cars and burning…? Is there just like a seed of anarchy? Is there a seed that sits in every person and whether they are celebrating a World Series win or heaven forbid, they lost an election, what compels us to think, “Well, there’s a Prius. I should set that thing on fire and turn it over in the middle of the street. Hey, look at that plate glass window. I think I’ll throw a rock”? Yeah, what…? Are we…?

Bill:      Detroiters would have done the same thing, you know? Detroit is a city famous for turning over cars and setting them on fire in the event of your favorite team winning. So that is really an interesting phenomenon and that’s what… Think about it. That’s what we do when we win—is your point.

Brian:   Right. Yeah.

Bill:      Well, what happens if we lose? What happens if somebody starts to turn my faucet off—my moneymaker, right? What if somebody turns my money faucet off just a little bit? What am I going to do? Anybody that will burn a Prius if I say, “Hey, you know what? I can’t afford to pay you anymore to just hang out all day, watch”—I can’t watch Oprah anymore because I’m not sure she’s on—but to watch TV and maybe drink some Mescal or whatever and hang out day—that we can’t pay you anymore this much. We’re still going to pay you something because we’re still socialists but we can’t pay you this much.

I agree with it—with the people that said that there will be trouble. There will really be trouble if this is the case. If Romney gets elected and he turns off the spigot even a little bit—I don’t know—do you think he will or do you think that’s all bravado, he’s playing to his side, he’s playing for Republicans? Him and the Vice-President candidate—Paul Ryan—they have to sort of say, “Hey, we’re fiscal conservatives” but when they get in that office—if they ever do—and they sit down and they look at the pressures that they are going to have, what are they going to do?

Brian:   Well, because as you know Bill, I don’t trust any of them when it comes to—what did I call them—Republicrats? I call them the Packs and the Jacks—two different factions of the same gang—after the pachyderms and the donkeys from the other side? I don’t trust either one of them. I think they are all going to pander. I think that—as you said, what politician is going to get up there and go, “Eh, you know what Governor Christie? Billions—hundreds of billions of dollars in damage in New Jersey? I was never the fan of the boardwalk. Why don’t you foot that bill yourself?” Right? There is not a… I don’t care what party you belong to. There is not a politician that’s going to do that. So for me, what’s going to be fascinating, one—is hearing… I am so excited. Can I tease a little bit where you’re going to be the next time we hang out together?

Bill:      Sure.

Brian:   Okay. So you’re going to be in London and we’ll talk about the project and everything else in next week’s show and why you’re going to be there but you’re going to be in a really unique position—that old term about “dining and dashing”—you’re going to vote and bolt. You’re going to head across the pond. I can’t wait to hear your report on what the people of England, of Great Britain, of London—what they are thinking, regardless of how our election goes. How cool is that going to be for you to be over there reporting from overseas on our next show, telling us how they view it from an outside…?

Bill:      We’ll certainly be interested in talking about that in great detail because it is an interesting… I mean we are a little bit provincial here. We do just see… We watch our shows. And there are some ways you can look outside. You can watch Al Jesaria [sp] or you can watch BBC or you can watch some things where there is a little bit of a global side but basically, no matter where you flip in our world, it’s… And you know, that’s so true—so true that as you watched the storm last night, even the footage is the same footage from CNN as it is from Fox and CBS and CBS’s reporters are…

Brian:   You mean Shepard Smith doesn’t want to go out and get all of his own footage, Bill?

Bill:      Yeah, well…

Brian:   Little Sheppie?

Bill:      You know what I expected last night? And I know we’re changing… we’re going… we’re flipping back but I really expected to see my favorite guy, Geraldo, dangling, doing some… Didn’t he…? Jeremy is nodding. Doing some death-defying, testosterone-driven reporting where he is not shoulders hunched in Capone safe…?

Brian:   Right, right, right. But that’s Cantore’s gig now.

Bill:      Out in the wind and maybe just have him hanging, dangling out on that crane.

Brian:   Crane—that would have been it. That’s TV.

Bill:      Have him dangling with the crane.

Brian:   With the crane.

Bill:      Dueling cranes.

Brian:   Dueling cranes—that would have been perfect. But you know, I think Cantore—I don’t know—I happened to flip through at one point last night, the Weather Channel. There is Jim Cantore standing in the wake of the wave, both hands on his hips like he’s Superman. I get out of that… Here is an idea. I think the very next time someone is killed because they’re down at the water’s edge pulling a Jim Cantore, that all those TV reporters that are saying to people “Stay inside. Don’t go out”—if someone gets hurt because they want to play pseudo television reporter in their mind, I think the television reporter should be held liable for their death. I think the network that he works for should be held liable—he or she works for—should be liable for that death because you’re even risking having to send emergency responders out. Why? So you’re Jim Cantore and you can stand there with your hands on your hips when a 12-foot wall of water comes through or you can be Al Roker and be blown off your little tokus?

Bill:      But listen here. Here is the deal. I hear what you’re saying but here is the deal. Think for a second of the guys… I was watching this last night and I’m sure you were too. The guys that had to pull back, when they pulled back, the buildings provided so much protection that it looked like it was springtime for Hitler in Germany. I mean it was wacky. There wasn’t any wind at all and they were just standing there talking like, “Well, I wonder what’s on Broadway tonight.”

Brian:   Yeah, but the other one with Al Roker that I was referencing—remember a few years back—where he’s up in the balcony of his hotel and he’s standing out there and the winds are whipping and everyone is going…

Bill:      Somebody’s throwing a bucket of water on him.

Brian:   Someone’s throwing a bucket of water—“Spritz me”—and Al Roker, the wind’s blowing and the wind blows him off his feet so the cameraman running to help him drops the camera and when he drops it, he hits the telephoto lens and then pulls back and you see like a chair, a couch, the little minibar. Roker was on the balcony of his hotel like he was reporting from the eye of the storm. Are you kidding me? And before anyone calls and complains because I bad-mouthed your favorite reporter, I don’t care. I was one.

If the storm is so bad that you are saying to people “Don’t go out in it,” then excuse me Mr. Superman—don’t stand there with your hands on the hips on the Boardwalk in Jersey when the waves are coming in because you encourage other people to go out there. That’s always… That’s kind of always bugged me. Or they’ll stand in waist high water and then if the camera pulls out, they’re like in someone’s swimming pool but they’ve just framed out. You know what I mean? The waist high water and there’s someone… They’re in someone’s above ground pool. Whatever.

Bill:      But that’s… You know what? Everyone has got to sell advertising for their show.

Brian:   Fair enough.

Bill:      And if your reporter isn’t getting… If he’s not getting hammered by the waves and if this bad thing’s not happening to him and if you can’t watch Al almost be killed, you’re going to flip because I can flip to another channel and watch somebody almost get killed.

Brian:   Well listen, I have a new definition…

Bill:      This is competition.

Brian:   …just because you said that—of embedded reporter. One of these times there is going to be a reporter embedded by a stop sign going by at 100 miles an hour. That I’ll tune in to see. These nut jobs. I… We should probably take that one… figure it out.

Bill:      I found your hot button.

Brian:   Yeah, I think you did. Yeah—reporters acting like they’re stronger than Mother Nature and they’re not.

Bill:      Well, do you remember during the Iraq war there were guys reporting and we find out that they were in Bahrain instead of Baghdad and we have all this stuff that “Well, I wasn’t really in Baghdad”?

Brian:   They’re the Bear Grylls of television reporting where he was surviving outside in the middle of nowhere and then crashing at the local hotel every night.

Bill:      I can… And I can assure our listeners that Brian and I are actually reporting from the bowels of Thompson Illinois.

Brian:   That’s true.

Bill:      We will take a bullet for… But we don’t… Also we don’t want anybody to try this at home.

Brian:   Right. Right.

Bill:      Because this is dangerous work.

Brian:   We’re in a bunker.

Bill:      And we’re in a bunker, in a sense.

Brian:   Yeah. Well, it is kind of dangerous.

Bill:      You couldn’t replicate this at home folks, if you wanted to.

Brian:   Right. I could throw a bucket of water on you on camera, if you want to. You’d look like you were covering the hurricane.

Bill:      It wouldn’t be the first time you threw a bucket of water on me.

Brian:   Well, turn about is fair play. Yeah. All right. So what else are you thinking about here? Because I know you’ve got big plans. Do you want to talk a little bit about why you’re going to be in London next week or should we save that for the show?

Bill:      Sure. I think we can… Well, Tuesday—and I think that we’ll be—what is the date Tuesday, next Tuesday? Do we even know? Do we have a calendar? Tuesday will be the 6th, so yeah. So there won’t be a show. We won’t be able to do this show until a little bit later and we’ll probably have to do two shows from London.

Brian:   Great.

Bill:      Believe it or not. But we’re going to London and we can kind of make an announcement today—a little bit like your National Geographic announcement before. So what we’re doing—we’re probably engaged in—thank you for the music Brian—what we’re…

Brian:   It’s the least I can do. You’re not taking me to London. I’ve got to stay here in the bowels of Thompson so it won’t be the last time you hear a drumroll riff.

Bill:      All right. Well, here’s what we’re doing. We’re going to London because we’ve got a recording studio rented and we’re working on a radio—a very dramatic—well, it’s become very dramatic but dramatic radio—Radio Theater. And you’ll remember we’ve had the cat from Lamplighter—Mark Hamby? He’s been on our show and we sent a couple people—our own Erin Fullen as well as my daughter Stephanie—to one of Mark’s camps and there is some fruit from this. So we’re developing this program—this wonderful story—and we’ve taken the first… Our first story is about GA Henty—it’s a GA Henty book—and it’s under Drake’s flag and so we’re going to make…

Brian:   Cool.

Bill:      …a dramatic theater presentation out of that and we have hired some really, really cool actors. I had to tell you this before. We tried to get… We have the grand inquisitor role and we tried to get Christopher Lee. Do you remember Christopher Lee…?

Brian:   Oh sure.

Bill:      [inaudible 0:45:30.4] and he’s been Dracula and he’s been a whole bunch of different things.

Brian:   Sure.

Bill:      And Christopher Lee this morning politely denied our request to be the grand inquisitor but do you want to know why? This is amazing. He said, “I grew up reading these Henty books. They are amazing. I want to be the main character. I want to be Henty or I don’t want to do it.” Well, unfortunately, we had hired Brian Blest—a great, great English actor who really looks and feels a lot like Henty—and so we had already had that position so we almost have to Christopher Lee “We can’t hire you” because that place has already…That position has already been filled.

So that’s what’s going on in London and then we’re of course going to try to make a stop. Since it’s November, we like the idea of the Pilgrims and so forth and their story. We’re probably going to stop at Scrooby and Plymouth and places like that and take that Pilgrim tour, as well as hit some of the sites I suppose in London and we’ll give you a report from there as well.

Brian:   And I am very fired up to see what people there are going to be thinking about the election. I’m fired up to see how the audio… how the shows go as well. So you’ve got a pretty… You’ll be there a couple weeks. You’ve got a couple pretty big weeks coming up.

Bill:      Ten days we’ll be there and we’ve got… So it will take up a couple different shows and then we’ll look forward to calling you back and touching base.

Brian:   Very cool. All right, Bill. Before we get ready to run, anything else that you want to kick around? I want to talk again just in light of the “to know even one life has breathed easier” line, is—and I think you said there is just a limited number of packages left.

Bill:      There were 30-some. I think there are probably 20-some now—with the thing, it’s going fast. So if you want one, you’ll get this on Friday and maybe you’ll be able to call us early Monday morning for sure and try to secure one.

Brian:   And send this—the link to our show—to your top five friends or family members or people that might not be familiar with our show because we hope if you listen to this and you start in advance to cultivate your own plan—whether you use our gear—we just want you to have a plan. We want you to have a plan as to what you could do in the event of an emergency. We think we’ve got some great gear to add to that plan but we thank you for sending this link around so that more and more people can get the message of 911 isn’t the number you want to rely on in an emergency situation—at least a large scale emergency situation.

All right, Bill.  Well, get ready to travel safe. I’ll look forward to hearing from you then in the weeks ahead. Ladies and gentlemen as always, on behalf of everyone here at Solutions From Science and Off The Grid News, thank you for your critiques, your comments—keep the emails coming, keep the Facebook and Twitter accounts coming as well. Thank you so very much for giving us an hour. We know it’s a huge chunk of your day and it’s an honor to have spent it with you.

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