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How to Barter if TSHTF and common sense

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  • How to Barter if TSHTF and common sense

    This is common knowledge, but sometimes some things just need to be said out loud....

    When everything around us that we are used to, stops, that is when your bartering skills will be just as important as knowing how to shoot a gun or skin a rabbit. And it never fails, no matter how many preparations you make, somethign will be forgotten somewhere, or used up before order is restored to the galaxy. And should it last more than the bare two weeks that most people have rations for, then thats when bartering can become dangerous.

    You (we, us) as preparers, will have the upper hand when it comes to trading for some thing or service you may need. The way to keep that upper hand is not to 'show off' the entire stash when you go to barter. If someone comes up to your house, and you have lights blazing, battery operated cd player playing, a big bbq going in the backyard, sitting there on the front porch cleaning a stack of guns or reloading ammo, then its going to be obvious that you should 'share the wealth' with the neighborhood and you'll probably be the next target for the marauding vigilantes who need to feed their family. And a hungry family at the gate is really going to be hard to turn away when you know you have plenty of food and supplies.

    Keeping a low profile is very important. If you feel the need to help a neighbor (and I hope you do), then do it quietly, discretely. Leave food or provisions on their porch, dont go knocking on the door and say "I got 500 lbs of rations back at the homestead, here you can have some'...

    Give away something that you can explain where it came from. Dressed, fresh wild meat, garden vegetables, with a little bit of rice or potatoes etc are renewable. A case of beans in exchange for those empty guns that a neighbor no longer has bullets for, is kinda obvious....

    Treat those rations as if they are precious. Sure, it may only be a day's worth of food in your 3 year supply, but everybody else doesnt have to know that. Be willing to walk away or make the 'sacrifice' of giving up what precious food you have to trade, in order to get what you need. A good acting job can save you a ton of stash...

    Trade away from your homestead or BOL. We come in here to this group and talk about all our preps and show our munitions, but nobody outside your protective circle needs to know anything about what you have. And never tell the same people about the same stash. If you show this person your guns, then dont tell them about the food you have in a bunker in the backyard.

    ALWAYS ALWAYS ALWAYS resist a pissing contest both before AND after TSHTF!!! Some other guy is gonna show off his guns, stash, provisions, hunting skills, or whatever the case may be. Let him think he has the bigger caliber or the longer list of provisions, especially if a third party is listening. The name of the game is not who has the bigger stash, but who gets to keep it the longest!!!
    I know there's a lot of common sense floating out there. Anyone got more to add?

    Last edited by Loshali; 02-02-2009, 08:14 PM.
    Classic Southern defense: "But your Honor, he just NEEDED killin!

  • #2
    You covered it pretty well......but I did find this. The idea of bartering is a new one for me. What do you have to say about #10:

    While crusing the internet, I have seen quite a few posts regarding
    "bartering" wherein some seem to not quite understand the connection between
    the actual practice and the propositon of survival. People tend to want to
    store up what they term loosely as "extra commodities" that they somehow
    believe they can trade for something more useful that they might need during
    a survival sceanrio.

    However, that?s not true bartering ... the foregoing is more like a
    wishful act, done out of sheer desperation as a substitute for any real
    planning and preparation.

    Here's what I call the "Ten Commandments of True Bartering" ... think about
    each of them very seriously.

    (1.) How much is "extra?" In that we never know exactly what the full
    ramifications of any survival scenario might be in terms of duration ...
    exactly how much is "extra" when it comes to storing truly useful things
    like toilet paper, razor blades, etc ?

    The truth is we don't know, so I wouldn't realistically count on having
    any thing USEFUL that might be considered as "extra barter goods." Better
    you should do some advance planning and store what you actually need and
    spend your money in a manner that you won?t have to count on trading for
    what you need.

    (2.) Useless trade goods. There is a question of morality invoved in
    specifically storing less useful things such as tobacco, alcohol, etc., as
    trade goods in that one is merely depending upon the bad habits of others to
    hopefully swap something worthless for something of greater value.

    Frankly, I don't consider having to do business with someone that has
    such a great dependency on something worthless that they might trade
    something useful away for it as an idealistic individual to trade with.
    They would be not only dependent, but dumb as a post....perhaps even

    More importantly, why waste your money stocking up on some useless item
    intended for someone else when you most likely can better use the money to
    purchase something more usefull for yourself? Your family is more likely
    to benefit from an extra case of beans as a useless carton of cigarettes.

    (3.) Boomerangs. I repeat ... for the upteenth time ... never trade
    anything to anyone that they can shoot back at you. Firearms and cartridges
    are not a reasonable form of exchange for anything. First, you never can
    tell when you might need the last one you own for your own defense. Second,
    a single .22 cartridge, fired from out of the darkness, can put a very quick
    end to you, your family and all of your most well thought out survival

    I see no particular reason to put my trust in anyone outside of my own
    immediate family in a serious survival scenario, and that particularly
    pertians to the wisdom of not putting anything into the hands of anyone less
    familiar to me, who might do harm to either me or mine. It has nothing to
    do with ?parnoia? and it has everything to do with common sense and good

    In todays world, while we make perhaps hundreds if not thousands of
    ?acquaintences? we make relatively few real friends. Among that number we
    are fortunate indeed to have one or two that we might regard as close as we
    would a blood brother. And of the lot, we honestly know very little about
    any one in particular. What little knowledge we do have is often more
    supeficial than not. We think we "know" someone, but that ?knowledge? is
    often only based on casual "glimpses" of the other person while at work, or
    during some social function of a rather brief duration.

    Essentially, in such instances, there is nothing of substance to base
    good judgement on and therefore common sense should tell us that it would be
    particularly unwise to give firearms or ammuntion to any supposed ?friend?
    of that description, let alone to attempt to use such things as a barter
    item with a total stranger.

    (4.) Don?t make yourself a "marked man". Becoming known locally as the
    well heeled merchant about town with lots of valuable goodies to trade is
    the best way I can think of to put a fat bulls-eye on your own back during a
    survival scenario of any kind.

    Neither can I think of a quicker way to get undesireable parties to seek
    you out along some lonely stretch of roadway between home and your ?place
    of business,? or to beat a path directly to your doorway, now involving not
    just yourself, but the security of your home and family. Needless to say
    the risk involves coming in contact with people who would not necessarily be
    interested in doing any good for anyone but whatever means

    (5.) Never trade commodities for commodities. Trade an intangible such as
    knowledge, skill and/or labor or the temporary use of a tool versus
    something tangible that you need yourself. The objective is to always
    come out of the bargain with everything you went into it with plus whatever
    you bargained for. Essentially you will lose nothing and gain something on
    each such occasion.

    (6.) Barter nothing that is not a renewable commodity ... swap potatos
    for ears of corn if you will... but save the last razor blade on earth for
    yourself. This is "real bartering" as one party has produced a true excess
    of something like potatos and the other party has produced a true excess of
    corn. When one meets and bargains with the other, each will come away from
    the deal with something of value.

    (7.) Bartering during an actual emergency is impractical. During an
    emergency, you want to be hunkered down, tending to matters concerning the
    well being and security of your family. You do not need to be away from
    your place of security. So it is far better to have spent your money on
    anything that will actually help keep you "tucked in" safe and sound during
    an emergency than some useless commodity that you ?might? be able to bargain

    (8.) The time for genuine bartering is after the danger is over. Call
    this during the "recovery phase" of a disaster scenario, after law and order
    have been reestablished, transportation and communication have again become
    possible to some degree, etc. Until that time, there is nothing in your
    posessession that you are not more likely to have future need of than anyone

    (9.) Loose lips sink survival ships. Think about these things and be
    very careful of what you say or do around others concerning your
    preparations. The only "secret" in the world is the one you have never
    divulged to anyone. Your families security, what you have accumulated as
    personal and family preparedness supplies and equipment, how many people
    live in your home, etc., should be regarded as no ones business other than
    your own. Don?t invite disaster to your home.

    (10.) Attempting to barter during an emergency is an act of despiration.
    Pray that you never have to attempt to trade anything for something that you
    need ... planning and preparation should eliminate any need for trading for
    absolutely necessary items such as water, food, clothing, shelter, medical
    supplies, etc.

    In order to insure that this is the case, be practical and prioritize
    your needs honestly ... you are far more likely to have a need for an
    extensive first aid and medical kit to handle accidents and illness than you
    are for a ghillie suit and a .308 with a range finding telescopic sight for
    some imaginary survival scenario. Having to barter for something that you
    really need in times of a disaster puts you at a distinct disadvantate and
    totally at the mercy of whom ever is holding what you need.

    If you don?t plan ahead, if you don't prioritize, and if you are not
    practical in determining your actual needs, you may find that yourself
    trading away some costly, prize piece of Walter Mitty survival gear for
    something that you or a member of your family could have just as well had
    for just a few dollars during better times, had you not squandered them
    away preparing for highly unlikely and primarily fear based survival

    This doesn?t mean you can't have both if you can afford them ... its
    just that you have some serious decisions to make along these lines if you
    can not. Having a good rifle and a good first aid kit is more practical
    than having an excellent rifle and no first aid kit.

    Bottom line ... remember what bartering is ... it is trading either
    intangibles or renewable resources during times when it is practical to do
    so... it is not attempting to trade worthless, or assumed ?excess goods? for
    something of greater value during times of duress... it just don't work to
    your advantage that way.
    Last edited by lazer128; 02-02-2009, 07:56 PM.


    • #3
      Gotta love #3. DONT TRADE AMMO!!!!! And I would have thunk that would be common sence for all. :D
      "Lighthouses are more helpful than churches" Franklin


      • #4
        I have a group of people I barter with right now it is a growing net work of like minded people I have met at work or farmers markets or around town. I trade eggs and chickens, clams and seafood for ground lamb from one person, pork from another and beef and corn from another. I trade my skill as heavy equipment operator for weekend use of the equipment. I trade my skill as a blacksmith with work done by a gunsmith. I trade welding on farm equipment for use of a tiller. Heck I am trading coyote skulls for pottery.In no case has cash changed hands and every one gets what they want or need. So now I have a good group of people I can trust to trade with should cash become nothing but paper, Trust being the key word.
        Last edited by Omegaman; 02-03-2009, 07:54 AM.


        • #5
          We should do that here, while we can't trade food so much... we shou;d be trading hard goods. I tried starting that awhile back in the classifieds section for trade

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