Public Safety

Chicago’s North Side Hit By Tire Thieves

Squatters. Fake construction zone robberies. Virtual kidnappings.

Criminal antics which one might think are more representative of a “Third World” country that have taken place in Chicagoland recently.

Now add a rash of vehicle tire thefts in a “nicer” area of Chicago (DePaul/Lincoln Park) to the mix. From Chicago’s CBS 2 News Monday:

“Wheels Flying Off Pricey SUVs”
CBS 2 Video

The Chicago Police Department is recommending the use of locking lug nuts to counter the thefts.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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Wednesday, October 7th, 2015 Crime, Government, Public Safety, Security, Vehicles No Comments

Gabe Suarez: ‘What We Really Need Is A Good Guy That Is Also A Killer’

Back on January 9, I blogged about Gabe Suarez, head of The Suarez Group and a decorated veteran of Southern California law enforcement, concerning a Facebook post of his in which he declared “Every Man Is A Counter Terrorist” in response to the Charlie Hebdo shootings in France.

On Friday, he updated that “call to arms” against the “bad guys” in the wake of the mass shooting at Umpqua Community College in Oregon.

While that update was just as thought-provoking as the original, it’s what Suarez wrote Sunday on his company’s Facebook page (and which I received via e-mail this morning) that really stands out for me. From that post:


Some points on Oregon: Its not a video of a kitten so I hope its actually read by someone.

1). I could simply cut and paste every article I have written after these and simply change the dates and locations and they would all be spot on.

a). Its either a jihadist muslim extremist, a common crazy guy, or a combination of both.

b). It is at a place where everyone has been voluntarily disarmed.

c). The police arrive after the bodies pile up and kill him, and then say it was a suicide.

d). The monkeys in charge call for more gun restrictions. Over and over and over. Routine? Yup.

2). The woods are lovely dark and deep. I will leave it at that…look it up. Very excellent timing after Putin gave Obama a penile prostate check over Syria.

3). If we did not embrace the cultures that hate us (reference the 100,000 Syrians your POTUS is bringing into the USA), or allow crazy people to roam free…I bet there would be fewer of these.

4). Given the inability of the authorities to keep you safe in such events, obeying “the sign” is a form of insanity. Not only immoral for them to suggest you do so, but also foolish on your part knowing what the eventual outcome of such an event would be.

5). We have plenty of noble victim-heroes that sacrifice themselves, unarmed to save others.

Yes…I got it…America yearns for heroes in these estrogenized times like an addict yearns for a fix. But we have plenty of the self sacrifial types. What we really need is a good guy that is also a killer. A good guy that is also a killer that will ignore the sign, and go after the sound of the shots with a smile on his face and a pistol in his hand and shoot the bad guy right in the face…or the back of the head if positioning favors that.

Today, every man or woman is a counter terrorist.


Suarez once again leaves his audience with a good deal of material to really think about, particularly that bit where he said, “The police arrive after the bodies pile up and kill him, and then say it was a suicide.”

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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CHIEF Supply 20% Off Top Apparel Brands Sale Until October 5

I try not to blog on Saturday if at all possible. But I just had to spread the word about this big apparel brands sale from affiliate marketing partner CHIEF Supply (blogged about here) going on until Monday, October 5. From an e-mail I received this morning from the Charlotte, North Carolina-based vendor of public safety and apparel:

Thru Monday

20% Off Top Apparel Brands

Use code OFFAPP20 in cart

*Qualifying brands are Dickies, Oakley, Horace Small & Tru-Spec. Oakley sunglasses, on-sale & clearance flag items, and additional discount codes excluded. Offer ends Monday, Oct 5th.

CHIEF offers free standard shipping for online orders with an order total of $99 or more.

Click on the banner ad below and see what CHIEF Supply has to offer. Please note that by clicking on the ad and purchasing a product (be sure to use that promo code!), I receive a commission from the sale.

Chief Supply Corp.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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Saturday, October 3rd, 2015 Advertiser Specials, Clothing, Public Safety No Comments

Another Violent Chicago Weekend: 4 Dead, 53 Wounded By Gunfire

Just read on the Chicago Tribune website a short while ago that 57 people were shot (4 fatally) from last Friday night through early this morning.

Alexandra Chachkevitch and Jeremy Gorner reported this marked “the second consecutive weekend in the city in which shooting victims topped 50,” where 53 people were shot (8 dead, 45 wounded) last weekend.

Chicagoans know that this type of violence typically occurs in certain parts of the city.

However, the amount of shootings going on these days- Chachkevitch and Gorner added “more than 40 were shot on four consecutive weekends in August”- is somewhat mind-blowing.

And while the arrival of more seasonal weather may result in a drop in these numbers soon, not only do I feel this level of violence is going to be a recurring issue for the city, but I think it will escalate and spread as the fallout of Chicago’s financial ills converges with the next major economic crisis that will soon grip the nation.

If this scenario does in fact arrive in the “Windy City,” a focus on self-defense and security (among other things) will be required by residents to come out the other side of this storm in one piece.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Gorner, Jeremy and Chachkevitch, Alexandra. “Ten-year-old girl among 57 shot over bloody weekend in Chicago.” Chicago Tribune. 28 Sep. 2015. ( 28 Sep. 2015.

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Monday, September 28th, 2015 Crime, Debt Crisis, Public Safety, Security, Self-Defense No Comments

Beware Of Uncle Sam?

Since the time we were subjects of the English monarchy, plenty of Americans haven’t been big fans of government.

Particularly fans of Big Government.

From the folks over at the Gallup website Monday:

Almost half of Americans, 49%, say the federal government poses “an immediate threat to the rights and freedoms of ordinary citizens,” similar to what was found in previous surveys conducted over the last five years. When this question was first asked in 2003, less than a third of Americans held this attitude

Overall, Americans who agree that the government is an immediate threat tend to respond with very general complaints echoing the theme that the federal government is too big and too powerful, and that it has too many laws. They also cite nonspecific allegations that the government violates freedoms and civil liberties, and that there is too much government in people’s private lives.

The most frequently mentioned specific threats involve gun control laws and violations of the Second Amendment to the Constitution…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

On September 9, the U.K.-headquartered internet-based market research firm YouGov reported on their website that based on recent research:

29% of Americans could imagine a situation in which they would support the military seizing control of the federal government…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

That percentage grew under the following scenario:

The proportion of the country that would support a military takeover increases when people are asked whether they would hypothetically support the military stepping in to take control from a civilian government which is beginning to violate the constitution. 43% of Americans would support the military stepping in while 29% would be opposed…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Long-time readers of Survival And Prosperity might remember me blogging about a Fairleigh Dickinson University PublicMind survey asking about a Second American Revolution that was conducted in April 2013. I wrote on May 3, 2013:

Armed revolution in the United States.

I heard it being talked about yesterday in the mainstream media after the release of some new poll findings, so I decided to go to the source this morning. From a Fairleigh Dickinson University PublicMind news release Wednesday, concerning their most recent national survey of 863 registered U.S. voters from April 22 through April 28, 2013:

The poll finds that 29 percent of Americans think that an armed revolution in order to protect liberties might be necessary in the next few years, with another five percent unsure. However, these beliefs are conditional on party. Just 18 percent of Democrats think an armed revolution may be necessary, as opposed to 44 percent of Republicans and 27 percent of independents…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Funny how that “29 percent” number pops up again.

Interesting times we’re living in, huh?

Two things come to mind here:

• Uncle Sam knows darn well about these polls/surveys
• Such views could be the real reason behind all those military training exercises in America’s big cities lately

Or maybe not.

One last point. As an American citizen and former civil servant at the federal level of government, I’ve always taken pride in our (relatively) peaceful transfer of political power since the founding of the Republic.

Here’s hoping that continues to be the case.

You can read that Gallup piece in its entirety on their website here. The same goes for that YouGov article here. Insightful and disturbing stuff.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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Chicago Police Reassigning 319 Officers From Desks To Streets

Even before suffering it’s second-worst weekend of 2015 for gun-related violence, Chicago announced the rollout of a new measure to try and combat the carnage. Frank Main and Fran Spielman reported on the Chicago Sun-Times website last Saturday:

The Chicago Police Department will soon move hundreds more officers out of desk jobs and onto the streets to battle the city’s surging violence — the latest in a series of transfers of cops from administrative jobs to patrol in recent years under Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

The department is reassigning 319 sworn officers from administrative positions to boost manpower on the streets without breaking the bank, said Adam Collins, a spokesman for the mayor. Those sworn officers include nurses, detention aides, property custodians and others whose jobs will be filled by lower-paid civilians, Collins said…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

This latest initiative by the City has been tried before. Main and Spielman added later in the piece:

Since the mayor took office in 2011, the police department has previously shifted at least 770 sworn police officers from desk jobs to patrol work

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

A couple of questions come to mind here:

1. Why weren’t those 319 administrative positions shifted to the street earlier?

2. At the same time, how will this move affect administrative efficiency at the Chicago Police Department? Should Chicagoans expect a reduced quality of service from the CPD going forward?

3. If this latest reassignment action doesn’t succeed, will CPD middle management be looked at next time around?

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Main, Frank and Spielman, Fran. “319 more cops to be moved from desk duty to streets.” Chicago Sun-Times. 19 Sep. 2015. ( 22 Sep. 2015.

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Tuesday, September 22nd, 2015 Debt Crisis, Fiscal Policy, Government, Public Safety No Comments

Complacency Over Next Terror Attack By Muslim Extremists

FBI, CIA, NSA all say no 9/11 terror threat

The directors of the FBI, CIA and the National Security Agency said Thursday they have seen no specific or credible threat to the American homeland in connection with the 14th anniversary of 9/11 — despite a surge of digital and audio propaganda circulated in recent days from both al Qaeda and its growing rival on the global jihadi stage, the Islamic State…”

The Washington Times, September 10, 2015

On the eve of the 14th anniversary of the September 11, 2001, Al-Qaeda terror attacks, I detect an abundance of complacency in the U.S. concerning the next attack by Muslim extremists. For example:

Since September 11, Threat of Terrorism Has Morphed

Bin Laden’s distant dream of a caliphate in lands cleared of Western influence is being reshaped by the Islamic State, which exercises terror very differently, with less interest in attacking the ‘far enemy’ of the West than in creating a Salafist revolutionary regime…”

-Steven Erlanger, The New York Times, September 10, 2015

Does 9/11 really still have to be a ‘national emergency’?

As memorable and as meaningful as the 9/11 attacks were, they were also 14 years ago… virtually all the al-Qaeda leadership who planned the 9/11 attacks are dead or in custody, and while the long convoluted plotline of post 9/11 war and conflict has created an ongoing mess in the Middle East, any lingering threat to what was billed ‘the homeland’ — and the vigilance needed to stop it — is in a much, much better place than it was in 2001…

So what good comes of declaring a ‘national emergency,’ year after year?”

-Will Bunch, The Philadelphia Inquirer website, September 10, 2015

This is the wrong time to cut the city’s anti-terror funding

Alarmingly, funding is slowly decreasing for New York City under the ‘Securing the Cities’ program, which helps first responders detect nuclear materials and prevent attacks. The initiative deploys radiation-detection capabilities to the region’s law-enforcement agencies to identify illicit radiological materials that could be used for an attack.

This type of work requires sophisticated equipment and constant training — both of which are expensive but plainly worth the cost. Yet the Obama administration has proposed repeated cuts to the program, this year requesting only $10 million compared to historic levels of nearly double that amount…”

-U.S. Representative Dan Donovan (NY-11th), New York Post, September 10, 2015

Consider what Rudy Giuliani, the former mayor of New York City at the time of the 9/11 terror attacks, wrote on The Wall Street Journal website Thursday:

It would be a mistake, however, to conclude that 9/11 is now simply a part of the nation’s history, like Pearl Harbor. Because there is one big difference. The causes and hatreds that created 9/11 are still with us, and the terrorists have enlisted members who are even more diverse, cunning and determined. The Islamist terrorist war against us continues. This is not a matter of history but of current and future threats…

Now, once again, the terrorist attacks under the banner of jihad are increasing and diversifying. With so many such attacks and thwarted attacks over the past five or six years, we must recognize that “they”—those who want to destroy civilization—are continuing the war against us.

Yet those running our government seem to be in an even greater state of denial than the nation was in during the period before Sept. 11. Now, instead of bin Laden, Iran’s supreme ayatollah has declared that he wants to destroy Israel, to continue to kill Americans and to establish an Islamic empire including Iraq, Syria and Yemen—and the terrorist groups Iran supports. At the same time, the group known as Islamic State, or ISIS, has declared a caliphate seeking the destruction of Christianity and other infidels, and now occupies key areas of Iraq and Syria.

As we reflect on the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, we must remind ourselves that all the wickedness underlying those attacks still exists and has expanded. We may very well be in more jeopardy now than before 9/11. Attacks such as those at Fort Hood, the Boston Marathon and similar incidents in Europe and around the world reveal that many enemies, not just one, are united in purpose: the destruction of our way of life. Each of these attacks may be more limited than the coordinated terrorist assault on Sept. 11, but they are frequent and hard to anticipate, causing widespread fear, the ultimate goal of terrorism.

We must acknowledge this war being waged against us, increase the military’s capacity to deal with it and, most important, train police to recognize the precursors of terrorist acts. U.S. military and intelligence capacity must not be drastically cut as proposed by this administration. It should be quantitatively increased and strategically improved…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Just as I’m convinced a financial crash is coming to our shores, I’m sure another terror attack will be perpetrated by Muslim extremists.

Concerning both, it’s just a matter of “when.”

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Taylor, Guy. “FBI, CIA, NSA all say no 9/11 terror threat.” The Washington Times. 10 Sep. 2015. ( 10 Sep. 2015.

Erlanger, Steven. “Since September 11, Threat of Terrorism Has Morphed.” The New York Times. 10 Sep. 2015. ( 10 Sep. 2015.

Bunch, Will. “Does 9/11 really still have to be a ‘national emergency’?” The Philadelphia Inquirer. 10 Sep. 2015. ( 10 Sep. 2015.

Donovan, Dan. “This is the wrong time to cut the city’s anti-terror funding.” New York Post. 10 Sep. 2015. ( 10 Sep. 2015.

Giuliani, Rudolph W. “The Islamist Menace Shadowing This Sept. 11.” The Wall Street Journal. 10 Sep. 2015. ( 10 Sep. 2015.

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Illinois Target Of Islamic State 9/11 Anniversary Attack?

Illinois could be the target of an Islamic State attack commemorating September 11, 2001, according to The Investigative Project on Terrorism, a Washington, D.C.-based non-profit research group that’s billed as the world’s most comprehensive data center on radical Islamic terrorist groups. John Rossomando blogged on For The Record (IPT’s blog) last Tuesday:

Several tweets from an Islamic State follower identifying himself as Abu Mohammed al-Khorasani hint that the terror group could be plotting new attacks inside the U.S. on the upcoming anniversary of 9/11.

A tweet featuring the Twitter hashtags ILLINOIS#, #11septmber and #KillAllAmericans went out at 12:04 p.m. Monday Aug. 31 saying, “Peace on the P.K. [a kind Russian machine gun] Its shots are thematic (rhymes) It strikes America. Our State is victorious.” A photo of the second airliner just before it hit the South Tower of the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001 appeared in the tweet.

Six minutes later, al-Khorasani tweeted the same hashtags together with a muddled Arabic phrase saying, “If you say to me, Dushka (a kind of Russian machine gun) Oh God, You have a petitioner (Masha, rhymes with Dushka) He strikes America [sic] and our State is victorious.” A graphic saying, “every American citizen is a legitimate target for us,” followed the text.

On Sunday, al-Khorasani wrote a similar threat, saying “SOON,” accompanied by an image of Osama Bin Laden and images of the Sept. 11 hijackers…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

That Twitter hashtag ILLINOIS# bit is somewhat disturbing. Notice how no other location was mentioned in the tweet.

You can read the entire piece from Rossomando on the IPT website here.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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Chicago’s Financial Reckoning Day Has Arrived

Chicago readers of Survival And Prosperity were warned that the City of Chicago’s poor financial health would result in a sustained hunt for much more revenue (new and higher fees/fines/taxes) for the foreseeable future.

The warnings were constant, and issued over the last couple of years.

So the following headlines on the websites of the two major local papers should not have come as a surprise to the courageous Chicagoans who’ve continued to read this blog on a regular basis despite the steady barrage of depressing news coming out of the “Windy City” lately.

“Emanuel to seek $500 million property tax hike”
Chicago Sun-Times website, September 2, 2015

“Emanuel set to call for largest property tax hike in modern Chicago history”
Chicago Tribune website, September 3, 2015

By the looks of things, Chicago’s financial reckoning day has arrived.

Time to pay the taxman.

Hal Dardick and Bill Ruthhart reported on the Tribune website this morning:

Mayor Rahm Emanuel is set to call for the largest property tax increase in modern Chicago history to raise enough money to make a major pension payment for police and firefighters next year, the mayor’s City Council floor leader and a City Hall source told the Chicago Tribune late Wednesday.

The mayor also plans to push a new garbage collection tax, a new per-ride fee on taxis and ride-hailing services such as Uber and a new tax on electronic cigarettes and smokeless tobacco products…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

The Chicago Sun-Times’ Fran Spielman broke all this down brilliantly last night. The City Hall Reporter wrote:

Sources said the 2016 budget that Emanuel will present to the City Council on Sept. 22 will include a $450 million property tax increase for police and fire pensions the mayor once hoped to shore up with revenues from an elusive Chicago casino.

In addition, Emanuel will ask aldermen to adopt a separate levy of $50 million to bankroll school construction and pay off old projects…

Emanuel has offered to raise property taxes by an additional $170 million for the schools, but only if teachers accept the equivalent of a 7 percent pay cut and the state reimburses CPS for “normal” pension costs…

Together, the increases for both the city and CPS have the potential to raise the annual property tax bill for the owner of a home valued at $250,000 by nearly $700.

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

“Home valued at $250,000 by nearly $700.”

Holy crap. That’s some pretty serious coin.

PSA from Alderman Al Czervik, Chicago City Council
YouTube Video

Keep in mind this hit to Chicago property owners doesn’t account for that other recent property tax hike I wrote about on August 27:

There are so many new and increased fees, fines, and taxes being proposed and implemented around the Chicagoland area these days, it’s hard to keep track of all of them. But here’s one Chicago tax hike that’s just been approved that’s making local headlines. Juan Perez, Jr., reported on the Chicago Tribune website last night:

Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s school board on Wednesday unanimously approved a budget that relies heavily on borrowed money and the hope of a nearly $500 million bailout from a stalemated Springfield, with the specter of disruptive cuts in January if that help fails to materialize.

The $5.7 billion spending plan contains another property tax hike — an estimated $19-a-year increase for the owner of a $250,000 home — as well as teacher and staff layoffs. The Chicago Board of Education also prepared to go to Wall Street to issue $1 billion in bonds and agreed to spend $475,000 so an accounting firm can monitor a cash flow problem so acute that Chicago Public Schools mulled skipping a massive teacher pension payment at the end of June…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

So there it is. And if Chicagoans think this major tax increase is some sort of one-off, well, I know of a certain bridge for sale out east. Like I’ve been warning all along, emphasizing it as recent as August 21:

New/higher fees, fines, and taxes, coupled with reduced government services

I also added in that post:

Chicago readers of this blog- what are you planning to do about the crisis? Or, what are you already doing? Maybe you don’t think a crisis exists? Please share your thoughts or experiences in the “Comments” section of this post, as I’d really like to talk more about this going forward.

Not much of a response was received (save for Mihail- thanks buddy). Anyone care to chime in now? Vent a little perhaps? Keep it civil, of course.

One more thing. With the cat out of the bag concerning the property tax hike and renewed attention on Chicago’s fiscal issues, I wonder what the impact will be on Chicago’s housing market (which had some positive momentum) going forward?

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Dardick, Hal and Ruthhart, Bill. “Emanuel set to call for largest property tax hike in modern Chicago history.” Chicago Tribune. 3 Sep. 2015. ( 3 Sep. 2015.

Spielman, Fran. “Emanuel to seek $500 million property tax hike.” Chicago Sun-Times. 2 Sep. 2015. ( 3 Sep. 2015.

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Illinois Police Officer Shot And Killed, Manhunt Continues

Northeastern Illinois readers of this blog- be advised that three male suspects (2 white, 1 black) are still being sought Tuesday evening after a Fox Lake police lieutenant was shot and killed earlier in the day. Ruth Fuller and Becky Schlikerman reported on the Chicago Sun-Times website:

A community mourned Tuesday while a massive manhunt continued into the evening in far north suburban Fox Lake for three suspects in the fatal shooting of Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz, 52.

He was gunned down about 8 a.m. Tuesday after telling dispatch that he was pursuing three suspects. His service weapon was taken…

Frank S. Abderholden, Dan Hinkel, and Dan Moran added on the Chicago Tribune website tonight:

His colleagues responded and found him shot in a marshy area near U.S. Highway 12, a main road through town, authorities said. His gun was found near him, said Lake County Undersheriff Raymond Rose. Gliniewicz died at the scene, Rose said.

The offenders should be treated as armed and dangerous, Rose said. He said police were working with “limited descriptions” of the suspects…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Too bad better descriptions of the suspects aren’t available.

From what I gathered watching the local TV news tonight, the focus of the ongoing search is that “marshy area.”

Here’s hoping Fox Lake-area residents have good security measures in place around their homes.

And something tells me a number of firearm owners will be sleeping better tonight than certain other neighbors.

Stay safe…

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Fuller, Beth and Schlikerman, Becky. “Massive manhunt continues after Fox Lake officer slain.” Chicago Sun-Times. 1 Sep. 2015. ( 1 Sep. 2015

Abderholden, Frank S., Hinkel, Dan and Moran, Dan. “Slain Fox Lake police officer identified as veteran cop, father of four.” Chicago Tribune. 1 Sep. 2015. ( 1 Sep. 2015.

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Tuesday, September 1st, 2015 Crime, Firearms, Public Safety, Self-Defense No Comments

Quote For The Week

“I am too pissed off tonight to be diplomatic about what’s going on and I’m not going to stick my head in the sand about it. I said last December that war had been declared on the American police officer led by some high profile people- one of them coming out of the White House, one coming out of the United States Department of Justice. And it’s open season right now. There’s no doubt about it…

And I’m tired of hearing people calling these black “activists.” They’re not activists. This is black slime and it needs to be eradicated from the American society and American culture…

I need every law-abiding person in the United States of America to stand up and start pushing back against this slime, this filth, that’s disparaging the American law enforcement officer within these communities. When these ugly people come out and start this, and start talking this stuff on social media, to push back against it, and demand- demand- people that belong to these organizations to get out of their town. There’s no room for it. Look, the American police officer is holding these communities together. And we need the support of the people that we defend everyday in order to get that done.”

-Milwaukee County (Wisconsin) Sheriff David Clarke, Jr., reacting to the killing of Harris County (Texas) deputy Darren Goforth on the Fox News TV show Justice with Judge Jeanine last Saturday

YouTube Video

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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Paladin Press 45% Off Everything Sale Ends Tuesday Noon ET

Boulder, Colorado-based publisher and affiliate marketing partner Paladin Press (blogged about here) is having a 45% Off Everything Sale until tomorrow at noon Eastern Time. From their website (down the left sidebar):

Paladin Celebrates Its 45th Anniversary By Offering 45% Off Everything
Use Code PALADIN45 At Checkout.
Now Thru August 25, 2015, At Noon ET.

Cannot Be Combined With Any Other Offer
Not Available To Wholesalers

Congratulations Paladin!

FYI, I took advantage of this huge sale and placed my own order at lunchtime today. A two-book set that would have cost me $62 with shipping came out to only $36.35 with shipping after that generous discount was applied.

Interested in saving some big bucks? Head on over to Paladin Press ASAP (remember, the sale ends tomorrow at noon Eastern Time). If you buy anything, don’t forget to use that code at checkout.

Please note I receive a commission on every item purchased via the above link.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


My Thoughts On Chicago’s Financial Crisis

I know I’ve been blogging a lot about Chicago/Cook County/Illinois lately. Which should come as no surprise to regular Survival And Prosperity readers considering I’ve talked about how I was born on the West Side, was raised around that area, and lived on the Northwest Side until I moved to the northwest suburbs two years ago.

Both the Chicagoland area and Illinois have been on my mind a lot recently. I fear we’re on the verge of some major upheaval stemming from decades of fiscal mismanagement by policymakers from both sides of the political aisle (some might think this blog only targets Democrats- over the years I’ve demonstrated everyone’s “fair game”). And by verge, I mean in the coming weeks. Focusing on Chicago today, what might kick it off (regular observers have witnessed the crisis growing for some time now)? I suspect the following. From the Chicago Tribune website back on July 31:

At a news conference this week, the mayor would not rule out a politically unpopular property tax hike, saying he’ll wait to show his hand until September, when he rolls out “a full budget with all parts in there.”

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

A good portion of the coming pain is going to be felt by the Chicago taxpayer. What kind of “pain” am I talking about? That which I’ve been blogging about for a couple of years now- new/higher fees, fines, and taxes, coupled with reduced government services. Last night’s post about potential revenue generators Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the City Council are mulling over (hat tip Fran Spielman of the Chicago Sun-Times) should give Chicagoans a better picture of what’s headed their way (a property tax hike and garbage collection fee look likely). Concerning cutbacks in government services, I think that’s already begun. For example, the manpower shortage in the Chicago Police Department (hat tip Second City Cop) that’s existed for some years now. Down the road, I predict the average Chicago taxpayer will find it increasingly difficult to afford living in the city, let alone doing it safely as local government struggles to provide effective, efficient services to constituents.

Now, it’s bad enough Chicago/Cook County/Illinois are in real financial trouble. But then there’s the legitimate concern of a slowing economy/recession being right around the corner, never mind that coming financial crash I started blogging about back on Memorial Day Weekend 2007.

So what’s a Chicago taxpayer to do? This former Chicago resident picked up and left the city limits in 2013. Concerned about future tax and public safety liabilities, my girlfriend and I reluctantly departed our “suburb in the city” and moved into a house in a not-too-far away authentic suburb. Granted, we’ll still be on the hook for county and state problems, but it’s what makes sense for us in the short-term.

As much as I blast Chicago on Survival And Prosperity (“tough love”), I’m not convinced the city’s going to go “belly-up.” I think there’s a good chance it could be run by something similar to the Emergency Financial Control Board in New York City from 1975 until 1986 (talked about here back in April), but even a setback like that won’t be the end of the “City By The Lake,” just like it wasn’t for the “Big Apple.” I do predict city life is going to get real hairy once the “balloon goes up,” but I think that will be the case in a lot of urban areas nationwide.

That’s my two cents on Chicago’s financial crisis- for now. Chicago readers of this blog- what are you planning to do about the crisis? Or, what are you already doing? Maybe you don’t think a crisis exists? Please share your thoughts or experiences in the “Comments” section of this post, as I’d really like to talk more about this going forward.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

(Editor’s note: I am not responsible for any personal liability, loss, or risk incurred as a consequence of the use and application, either directly or indirectly, of any information presented herein)


Dardick, Hal. “Emanuel needs $754M more to make ends meet.” Chicago Tribune. 31 July 2015. ( 21 Aug. 2015.

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The Survival Podcast’s Jack Spirko On Nationwide Riots

If you’ve been following the news the last couple of days, you’re probably aware of the renewed tension in Ferguson, Missouri, on the first anniversary of the riot there. Back when I started this blog in 2010, I suspected civil strife would pick up due to worsening financial conditions and other developments.

Regrettably, I think Ferguson is just the tip of the iceberg.

I’m not the only one who sees more civil disturbance on the way. Modern survivalist and host of The Survival Podcast Jack Spirko has been issuing warnings as of late. And I’ve been listening attentively. Back on May 20 I blogged:

Speaking of The Survival Podcast, I was listening to a different episode (number 1566, “What the Baltimore Riots Say about our Future”) some time back and took note of some advice host Jack Spirko shared with listeners. He warned on April 28:

You know those trendy areas in downtown that everybody thinks are great places to live as a hipster, because you can walk to the donut shop and the coffee shop? Sooner or later in most of our big cities those are going to be burned to the ground. Don’t live there. Don’t live there. One more time, don’t live there. Get out of the urbanized areas. I don’t care how you do it, just do it. You’re better off anyway…

Spirko added later in the podcast:

I wish I had better news for you. I wish I could tell you that this is an isolated incident. But here’s what I believe. The potential for this type of a riot exists in every major city in America. And it actually would be relatively easy to set them off like fires. It really would. I think the right people, with the right messaging, the right agitation, the right insiders, could cause a riot like this in any city with a population over 500,000 in America today. And quite a few smaller venues too. I really do. That should scare the shit out of you. But the response should scare you even more. It’s not going to be pretty. That’s why you need to be prepared…

Spriko wasn’t about to leave listeners “hanging” on this topic, so on July 29 he released episode 1614, “The Danger Of Nationwide Riots.” From that show:

So here’s what I think you need to do for your own protection. Number one, you need to be at some level of in touch with your local law enforcement. Sheriff’s department, local PD, whatever. You need people that will tell you what they know if things are starting to go sideways. And they will know when they start to go sideways long before a TV says so. You need to be paying attention to chatter with a police scanner or a scanner app or something like that in your general community on an ongoing basis. Just once in a while. Couple times a day just checking in to see what’s going on. Some local PDs have like online now where you can go online and see all the police activity…

The closer you live to a city, the more you need to have a plan to eventually say, “As much as I want to stay and defend my home, it’s not worth it, I’m leaving.” And I know the survivalist mentality is strong in our community. And I will stay here, I will pick up my guns, I will do no harm to anybody, but if you come here and take what I have, I will lay you flat out. I know that is in you, because it’s in me. I mean, that’s how I feel. And in many instances, it’s the course I would take. You can do whatever you want until you mess with me or my neighbors and then it’s on bitches. But you have to think about the result. If your home’s burnt to the ground, that’s what insurance is for… And I would rather rebuild my life with fire insurance, than I would want to try to rebuild my life from behind the bars of a penitentiary, which is a place you may end up if you take that stance. There may come a time when you have to, where you have no choice… I mean what you need is a neighborhood banded together. You’ve seen the signs after hurricanes and stuff- 20, 30 friggin’ rednecks with guns. “You loot, we shoot.” Usually that is enough to defer and cause avoidance. But the closer you live, the less likely that is to be. So the closer you are in, the more you need to have a plan to bug out, which you should have anyway because hurricanes, tornadoes, fires, they are also reasons you might have to bug out. Illnesses, pandemic… There’s times getting out of the way make sense.

You also have to have a good, solid bug-in plan. The bug-in plan is the most important plan you need for this. For most of us, we do not live in the streets where these types of things actually happen. The spillover into suburbs, etcetera will be limited. And it will be more like one-off type things. It will not be wholescale rioting. The safest course of action for most people is going to be for a month or more to hunker down, live off of what you have, go out as little as possible, coordinate with your neighbors, coordinate with what’s left of local law enforcement, and wait this thing out if it happens. It’s going to be the most sane, rational thing that you can do. It going to be the only way no matter how good your intentions are you’re not going to be part of one of the groups pouring gasoline on the fire. So the bug-in plan is important, which means all your basic preps- food, water, energy, medical, health, etcetera. It means if you live in a city that is particularly vulnerable to this and you work where they will be a problem, or you’d have to cross the problem to get to work, this is the time now to start talking to your boss about and say, “Hey look, if something did go sideways in this town, don’t you think it would make sense if we had ways for our people to work remotely, so that the company’s operations can continue, but nobody’s life had to be at risk.”

You need to be tied in to your neighbors. You need to have agreements with your neighbors… There’s some neighbors you really can’t go deep with them about this, but you just need to know them. What’s their name? What’s their spouse’s name? When do they work? When do they come home? What are they like? So when this stuff starts to go sideways, instead of telling them it may go sideways, it’s going sideways right now, let’s work together to protect our neighborhood. You need to be part of your neighborhood, part of your community. Whether it’s a rural one or an urban dense one, doesn’t matter. You need to know as many people’s names as possible.

You need to be trained in self-defense and you need to be armed. In spite of what I said about the fact that you could get into a situation where if you defend yourself you could be prosecuted, there’s a point at which that goes out the window. When you legitimately feel that your life or the life of a loved one is being threatened, and lethal force is the only alternative, the time to use it is two-and-a-half seconds ago. But you can’t go back two-and-a-half seconds so the time is now…

But overall what you need is a plan… I don’t know anything about you individually, okay? So in the end, you have to say to yourself, “Self, this is something that could happen. If it did, near me, what would we do, and when would we act.” In other words, when would we say, “Okay, nobody is going to school or work.” What would be the level of danger that we would have a clearly-defined border, and once that occurred, how long could we be okay? How long would we be alright?… If we did leave where would we go? What would be our basic rules of engagement? When would we act? Who would I contact first in the neighborhood? What would I say? You just need to mentally run the scenario in your head. Not to the point where you start to fear from it or have apprehension from it. Just to the point where if it does occur, it’s not like, “Holy shit, what do I do now?” like you’ve never thought about it before. See, that’s the big thing I want to leave you with today… What matters is that you’ve mentally drilled into yourself that there’s something I can do and these are the things that I would do. That’s what makes you able to adapt and survive.

Whew. Wise words from Spirko on dealing with a disturbing event that I predict Americans will be experiencing more frequently in the coming years.

You can listen to episode 1614 in its entirety here, and episode 1566 here, on the The Survival Podcast website.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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Chicago-Area Expressway Shootings Jump

I thought there was an uptick in the number of local expressway shootings lately. Frank Main reported on the Chicago Sun-Times website yesterday:

Expressway shootings have become a major problem. They not only threaten the lives of motorists, but they have also caused frequent traffic jams as police shut down the expressways to investigate them.

In 2010, there were six shootings on Chicago-area expressways.

Last year, there were 18.

And so far this year, there have been 25

In the past two years, one person was killed and 23 people were wounded in the shootings, according to the Illinois State Police.

Most of the shootings don’t appear to stem from road rage, said Sgt. Clare Pfotenhauer, a spokeswoman for the state police. Usually, they involve gang conflicts, she said.

A law enforcement source said gang members follow their targets onto the Dan Ryan and Eisenhower expressways because they believe it’s easier to get away from police on the expressways than on neighborhood streets…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

I’ve logged a lot of hours on the Eisenhower over the years. Back in the late nineties, I was heading east on I-290 into the city when I noticed my girlfriend at the time was staring out the front passenger window at other vehicles. Just then what appeared to be a car full of gangbangers pulled up alongside of us. By the look on their faces, they weren’t too happy being stared at by some far west suburban white girl. Nothing came of the incident. However, living off the West Side at this time, I knew better than to stare at other vehicles and their occupants on certain stretches of Chicagoland roadway lest they consider “popping a cap in my ass” (a couple of years earlier while driving on I-43 in downtown Milwaukee I already had a handgun flashed at me), and gladly shared such concerns with this young lady later that day.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Main, Frank. “As Chicago expressway shootings soar, state police crack down.” Chicago Sun-Times. 9 Aug. 2015. ( 10 Aug. 2015.

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Monday, August 10th, 2015 Crime, Public Safety, Transportation, Vehicles No Comments

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