No Power, No Running Water, No Toilets: Millions of Americans Are Living in Third-World Conditions

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Author of Be Ready for Anything and Build a Better Pantry on a Budget online course

Scattered around the nation, there are parts of the country in which millions of Americans are living without the basic amenities that most of us take for granted.

I’m not talking about high-speed internet or frivolous things. I’m talking about electricity, flushing toilets, and clean running water.

But this isn’t a problem that only exists in one state or to one demographic. It’s happening across the nation more and more. Let’s take a look.

Millions are living without running water.

A new report says that more than 2 million Americans in West Virginia, Alabama, Texas and the Navajo Nation Reservation in the Southwest are living without clean running water or indoor plumbing. They’re drinking from polluted streams. They’re carrying buckets of the same water home for washing. They’re urinating and defecating outside with no wastewater treatment.

Race and poverty are the strongest predictors of water and sanitation access, according to the study. Native American families are 19 times more likely than white households to lack indoor plumbing, while black and Latino homes are nearly twice as likely. Meanwhile, federal funding for water infrastructure is just a small percentage of what it used to be, the authors wrote.

“Access to clean, reliable running water and safe sanitation are baseline conditions for health, prosperity, and well-being,” DigDeep CEO George McGraw and US Water Alliance CEO Radhika Fox said in a statement. “However, they remain out of reach for some of the most vulnerable people in the United States.”

The 2 million figure includes 1.4 million people with homes who lack access to hot and cold running water, as well as a sink, shower, bath or flushing toilet. (source)

As well, more than half a million homeless Americans don’t have access to basic sanitation. Nor do almost a quarter of a million people in Puerto Rico, where many of whom are still struggling after Hurricane Maria.

The lack of access to water is happening across the nation, often hidden within wealthier enclaves.

Water-access challenges affect entire communities, not just “isolated individuals choosing to live off the grid,” the authors wrote. The researchers found clustered water problems in Alaska, New Mexico, the Dakotas and Maine, in addition to their focus on six “hotspots”: California’s Central Valley, the Navajo Nation, Texas colonias, the rural South, Appalachia and Puerto Rico.

Notably, these at-risk communities can hide within wealthier counties, the study showed. Overall, one Arizona county highlighted by researchers revealed that just 4 percent of residents overall lacked complete plumbing—but a more local analysis revealed pockets where 40 percent of people lacked access. (source)

Don’t even get me started on all the diseases that can occur when people dispose of their human waste unsafely. I wouldn’t be shocked to see a return of diseases that have all but been eradicated linking back to the lack of plumbing.

Then there are places that have running water but it’s toxic.

It isn’t just a complete lack of running water that is a problem. There is a lack of safe water. Let’s look at Flint, Michigan.

Five years ago, it came out that the city of Flint had been providing tap water to its residents that was tainted with lead, bacteria, and trihalomethanes. At the time this information came to light, there was also an outbreak of Legionnaire’s Disease that traced back to the drinking water.

And to add insult to injury, officials lied about it instead of warning people.

When the crisis began, state and federal officials repeatedly denied that there was any issue with the water, despite clear evidence that there was. Later, officials manipulated test results, downplayed the problem, and lied to residents.

As Michigan Radio’s Lindsey Smith reported:

“The tests were bad enough that [in July 2015], they should have informed the public about the broad lead risk, but that’s not what happened. Instead, state and city officials kept telling residents there was no lead problem in Flint’s water; that this EPA report was wrong; that the report was written by a ‘rogue employee.'” (source)

The EPA says the water in Flint is safe now, but residents are not convinced. Many still rely on bottled water.

But Flint’s mayor, Karen Weaver, has dismissed such declarations as “premature.”

“Nobody wants to say that Flint water is safe to drink more than myself and the residents of Flint, but, before we say it, we want to be absolutely sure it is true,” she said in June in response to Wheeler’s comments. A spokesperson for the mayor told FRONTLINE that Weaver stands by her stance.

Though Flint’s water, which once tested dangerously high for lead, is now within federal safety standards, microbiologists, infectious disease experts and officials including Weaver worry that harmful elements may still remain — and that state and federal regulators aren’t actively testing for them. (source)

And some scientists are also not convinced.

Across the U.S. right now, almost all fatalities from waterborne diseases in the United States are from legionella, and cases have been rising steadily since 2000, according to Mark LeChevallier, a scientist and retired water manager. Legionella testing isn’t common. But LeChevallier, who oversaw more than 300 water systems that served more than 15 million people for private utility American water, believes both state and federal bodies, including the EPA, are responsible for putting new guidelines in place…

…As in other cities, Flint’s Department of Water Services is responsible for tracking the chemical composition of the city’s water. But under both state and federal Safe Drinking Water Acts, government responsibility ends the moment water enters the pipes of a private home — where experts say deadly legionella bacteria are most likely to fester. (source)

Other scientists concur with LeChevallier.

“We don’t know if it’s safe, because the proper studies haven’t been done,” said Marcus Zervos, an infectious disease doctor who sat on the Flint Area Community Health and Environment Partnership (FACHEP), a group hired by the state in 2016 to investigate the Legionnaires’ outbreak. That fall, the team tested the water of 188 randomly selected Flint-area households and found legionella in 12 percent of them.

The state ultimately rejected the team’s work, saying the scientists had “only added to the public confusion,” and that an outside consulting firm the state hired had been critical of their work. (source)

Despite the fact that Michigan has disregarded his warnings, Zervos and other scientists have continued to study the water in Flint.

In 2018, a team including Zervos tested water filters from 10 Flint residents’ homes that they suspected were infected. The results, published early this year in the International Journal of Infectious Diseases, announced that they had found toxic, often antibiotic-resistant bacteria in some filters.

“By us saying that the filters potentially have a problem with them, we were also getting push back [from the state],” Zervos told FRONTLINE. “There are people going around that are saying that it’s normal to have bacteria in the water and that the filters are the solution to this. There are still a lot of questions.”

One of his FACHEP colleagues, University of Michigan professor Nancy Love, said that while the filters distributed in Flint are efficient at removing lead, research suggests they can also harbor harmful bacteria. “Whether the level of those bacteria that end up in filtered water, consumed over long periods of time, is a health risk has, to my knowledge, not been evaluated,” Love said. (source)

As I’ve written previously, the onus is on us to ascertain whether our water is safe or not. You can easily test your tap water for a wide variety of bacteria, viruses, and other harmful substances. And with Flint in mind, I can think of no reason on earth a person would trust the local government to warn them about unsafe water.

Contaminated water isn’t isolated to Flint.

While it would be easy to say that this situation only happened in Flint to poor families, that would be an incorrect assumption. At least ten other cities have dangerously high levels of contamination.

  1. Pittsburgh has been in the news with too-low chlorine levels as well as high levels of lead.
  2. Milwaukee public health officials didn’t disclose the fact to parents that their children had extremely high levels of lead in their systems.
  3. 57 out of 86 public schools in Detroit tested positive for elevated levels of copper or lead in their water. Children who have high levels of copper and lead can have learning disabilities and a predisposition toward violent behavior.
  4. Newark has “all-time high” levels of lead as well as high levels of haloacetic acids (HAAs), which can form during the water disinfecting process, cause skin irritation, and potentially increase cancer risk.
  5. Washington DC‘s water supply has been known to be contaminated with lead since the early 2000s.
  6. Brady, a small town in Texas, has nine times the EPA’s allowable limit of radium in the water. Radium has been linked to bone cancer.
  7. Baltimore‘s water has some lead, but the more prevalent concern is a cloudy reservoir with particles that carry viruses, bacteria, or parasites.
  8. Residents of Dos Palos, a small town in California, have had to switch to bottled water after it was discovered their tap water contained trihalomethanes, a group of chemicals linked to kidney problems and increased cancer risk.
  9. Charleston, West Virginia is dealing with the aftermath of a chemical spill five years later. MCHM, a chemical foam that’s used to wash coal, spilled into their water system and as recently as 2017, the Environmental Working Group found multiple contaminants in the city’s water.
  10. Newburgh, New York declared a state of emergency when the reservoir tested positive for perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS), which has been linked to cancer and chronic kidney disease. The city installed a new filtration system but many residents still don’t trust the water.

As you can see, dangerous contamination of water can happen anywhere. It’s extremely important to note that filtration devices do not remove all of these contaminants and boiling water can make some contaminants even more dangerous.

The California blackouts have a ripple effect.

Meanwhile in California, having electricity is no longer a given.

By now, you’ve heard about the arbitrary power outages throughout the state which leave millions in the dark. On a regular basis, PG&E is shutting off electricity to its customers in order to “prevent wildfires.” This isn’t just a minor inconvenience – for many who have well water and septic tanks, they’re unable to have running water or even flush the toilets. Schools are closed, businesses can’t run, and people are losing income and food.

And it gets worse. The last time the power was out, communications systems began to fail and Californians found themselves in the dark with regard to information, too. Radio stations, internet service providers, television stations, and even cell phone towers ran out of back-up power, and with it, the ability to warn residents of impending danger.

As far as demographics are concerned, many of the hardest-hit areas are actually conservative. Residents of Northern California have been trying to secede from the madness of more urban areas for years.

What area will be hit next?

It seems like the standard of living in our country is rapidly declining. It makes you wonder what area will be hit next with rolling blackouts or contaminated water. And as our economy continues to flail, many can’t even afford things like food or rent. It isn’t a stretch of the imagination to think that those who are struggling may have to make a choice to live without utilities.

The United States of America has always seemed like the epitome of a thriving, first-world country. But as these pockets of desperation spread, it’s beginning to look like that status is only true for some of us. I’ve always recommended a low-tech approach to prepping, and as things become more difficult for more people, going low-tech could be the only option.

What do you think? Do you foresee the lack of clean water, sanitation, and electricity as a problem that will spread? If so, what area do you think will be hit next?

About Daisy

Daisy Luther is a coffee-swigging, globe-trotting blogger who writes about current events, preparedness, frugality, voluntaryism, and the pursuit of liberty on her website, The Organic Prepper. She is widely republished across alternative media and she curates all the most important news links on her aggregate site, Daisy is the best-selling author of 4 books and runs a small digital publishing company. You can find her on FacebookPinterest, and Twitter.

Picture of Daisy Luther

Daisy Luther

Daisy Luther is a coffee-swigging, globe-trotting blogger. She is the founder and publisher of three websites.  1) The Organic Prepper, which is about current events, preparedness, self-reliance, and the pursuit of liberty on her website, 2)  The Frugalite, a website with thrifty tips and solutions to help people get a handle on their personal finances without feeling deprived, and 3), an aggregate site where you can find links to all the most important news for those who wish to be prepared. She is widely republished across alternative media and  Daisy is the best-selling author of 5 traditionally published books and runs a small digital publishing company with PDF guides, printables, and courses. You can find her on FacebookPinterest, Gab, MeWe, Parler, Instagram, and Twitter.

Leave a Reply

  • Eventually it will spread to all of California, largely because the government is orchestrating it. The secession movement you mention has several factions from what I’ve been reading. Each of them have different goals and agendas.

    Cali already pipes in most of their water from out of state, and from what I’ve heard the Nestle corporation has purchased the rights to that water. Only in America, right? What could possibly go wrong?

    Then there’s the issue of the Ogallala Aquifer declining to the lowest point since records have been kept. For those who don’t know, that is one of the world’s largest underground reservoirs of fresh water.

    Ironically, with all the problems California currently has, I wouldn’t even rank water in the top 10 issues.

      • I understand your position but I rank the insanity of their corrupt Commie politicians and corporate pirates above water. If it weren’t for those criminal clowns, Cali wouldn’t have a water problem.

        Then there’s the moral degeneracy responsible for a whole host of problems…illegal immigration, drugs, rape, murder, homelessness…just to name a few.

        The water problem is a symptom. To me, the disease is the priority. Cure the disease and the symptoms go away.

        • Moral degeneracy has nothing to do with the root cause of any of the problems listed in your post.

          Infrastructure costs money. Health safety costs money. Neither seems to be much of a priority as of late.

          The costs are going to skyrocket as the children who live in these area get older, if they live that is. Lead and other toxic substances in drinking water is going to leave these children as less than productive members of society.

          • You obviously know nothing of the consequences of moral degeneracy or you could not credibly take that position. There are two possible explanations for that, and I’m not going to paint you into a corner by venturing a guess as to which possibility that is.

            I will note that you didn’t bother to refute my claim that corrupt and criminal politicians and corporations are to blame for the water problem though.

            And if you can’t see that corruption and criminality are products of moral degeneracy, then you are beyond help.

            What you think , you do, and what you do, you are.

            I think, therefore I am.

            You shall know a tree by the fruit it bears.

  • ‘Weaver stands by her stance’ huh? Nice one by whoever wrote the piece that quote came from 🙂
    But seriously, the more I read stuff like this the clearer it becomes in my mind that we must be self-reliant, self-sufficient and not trust anything we don’t produce ourselves. What a sad state of affairs!

    • Because Government is always the answer to every problem, right? IMO, the EPA should be abolished outright. Responsible citizens, not petty bureaucrats, are the answer to environmental concerns. I’ve had quite enough of the Deep State telling me what I can’t do with my own property WHILE they’re stealing my money every year to fund abortions and brainwash our youth.

      Don’t get me started.

      • Starting with Koch Industries, right? It was quite apparent that “responsible citizens” weren’t doing the job so the EPA was established. As to the rest of your post, perhaps you need to double the tin foil on your hat.

        • I don’t really care who you “start” with, and if you have a problem with Koch i’m sure that’s none of my concern.

          The EPA is one tentacle of the Deep State Kraken. Like all successful secret fascist organizations, they hide their ambition for unlimited bureaucratic power behind the lies of their “good intentions” and get useful idiot sycophants to prop them up out of sheer stupidity.

      • You are a like-minded person to me and I wish there was a private way to give you my email. Are you on Gab or MeWe?

  • It is very easy to go to 3rd world living conditions in affulent areas. All it takes is for home repairs to take more money than someone has. It is not uncommon for drilling a new well up to code to cost $10,000; a new roof can cost $10,000-$20,000; fixing a septic system up to code can cost $8,000 to $10,000; let alone getting a new toilet or faucets when the old ones give out. Most people don’t have $20,000 to $40,000 for these kinds of home repairs, especially if there are ill people or others not working in the family, and a lot of funds are going towards medicine and medical bills. I know this, because it happened to me. Trying to get out of the house, I finally found an apartment barely affordable. And then with the roof leaks, the house burned down totally because of electrical arcing in the wires in the ceiling. Good thing I was at a motel with the leaks. And – you guessed it – no house insurance and no life insurance after my husband died from kidney failure. So, no demolition money either. Just a total disaster and these kinds of things, sadly, are becoming more common.

  • RIGHT NOW americans are living in paradise,after obama returns death will be common in streets allies,on the sides of the road,and its they way americans want it,the crookest bastards on earth running everything,get used to eating children,there won’t be any food,only your hero’s will have food,you will have nothing,and if your lucky you’ll survive it,which ain’t likely…

    • What are you saying? Your language usage and grammar are so bad that what you’re trying to get across is unclear at best.

      • Hi Janis, not 100% sure, grammar-wise. Nevertheless, here’s a possible interpretation. Hope this helps, and blessings to you and yours.

        Belle ????

        Americans are living in paradise right now. After Obama returns, death will be common in the streets. Allies on the sides of the road. And it’s the way Americans want it. The crookest bastards on Earth running everything! Get used to eating children[, because] there won’t be any food – only your heroes will have food! You[, on the other hand,] will have nothing! And if you’re lucky, you’ll survive it, which ain’t likely… ????

        • I am with Janis on this one.
          And thank you, Belle, for your well intention translation, I got the feeling he/she was posting from a mobile device. Not exactly keyboard friendly.
          However, even with the translation, still does not make a lot of sense.
          Obama returns? From where? The private sector? I think he is having a better time playing golf, making thousands of dollars in money for speaking engagements then making a re-bid for WH.
          Eating babies? Really?
          And I am my own best hero.

  • hi, I am in northern California, we just had our power turned back on, this time only 1 day, last time 3 days. So it gets cold up here. my house is all electric, we do have a generator now, but I cant run the furnace, wash machine or stove! So it can get depressing, no hot food or drinks, no hot shower, also people with horses run out of water. what about the gardens?? it is really bad, I hope a solution comes soon, like underground wires, would be nice !

    • What size generator do you have? You’d be surprised at how much can be done with a generator using the proper techniques…assuming your generator is not a glorified toy. I’ve got a 6500W Generac that will do all the things you mentioned and more…with the proper wiring setup and some creative juggling.

      If I knew more about your situation I might be able to provide you with some helpful tips.

      Also…which is it? is your house “all electric” or do you have a furnace?

      I have a wood stove to supplement my heat and cooking needs.

    • I totally understand what you mean about no electric, no furnace. Fortunately we have a wood cookstove and a fireplace with a heat-alater. (Probably spelled that wrong) When our electric goes out the furnace blower doesn’t work. The hubs put a twist lock that allows him to plug the generac into the breaker box. But you have to shut off the main to the house and only run what needs to be supported by the generator. It is a learning process for me because I am not a phase 3 electrician like the hubs . We bought some solar lights that are like lightbulbs and give off better lighting. If you have a gas grill you could heat and cook on it and maybe plug a crock pot into the generator? I have a newer stove and with the electronic ignition and digital panel for temps, I can’t use the oven. However, I do cook in the oven on my wood stove. Keep reading articles and get some ideas that will work best for you. Good luck!

  • I Love my running water, indoor plumbing and electricity! BUT it’s not impossible to live without it. For thousands of years humans didn’t have it! . We’re pleasantly spoiled. But people do need to educate themselves on how to be sanitary without it. We lived 5 years without running water or plumbing. And the first few months without electricity. We moved in with a toddler and a baby and later added another child ???? . It’s a lot of work! But it’s entirely possible and our kids survived just fine. It’s important to have a safe disposal for toilet needs and dirty water. Also you need to keep clean water separate from the dirty and use clean containers, of course. In northern California if the septics don’t work and you have some land, dig a basic outhouse for the time being. Just backfill it when things become normal. Most dirty water can be poured on the ground, ( not bathroom waste of course). Sponge baths will get you clean. It’s not as satisfying but gets the job done. It takes work but can be done. It would be wise to study up on how they did it “back then” and have some jugs, shovel, and other simple items on hand. Just in case. We need to adopt. “Can do ” attitude in stead of ” poor me, I can’t ???? ” .

    • There are far too many people in the US, much less the world, for outhouses to be a short term solution. Lot sizes and soil types can make traditional septic systems a hazard. Corporate farms are contaminating drinking water. And the farms don’t have to be geographically close to where the contamination occurs.

      It is too bad that those who don’t think we need any regulations for air or water can’t be forced to live in the vicinity of the polluters. Let them drink, cook, and bathe with the contaminated water. Let their children play in contaminated soil. All of them enjoy breathing the toxic air.

      • You sound just like that idiot professor from Berkley. I bet your idea of an “outhouse” is a Don’s Jon! You would literally starve to death without the chemicals industrial agriculture uses to produce your food for you. So forgive me if I don’t take environmental advice from someone who thinks chocolate milk comes from brown cows!

        There’s more than one side to every issue and you are consistently on the wrong side of ALL of them.

      • @Selena,
        Gotta agree with you about the need for regulations on big corporate ag.
        Daisy just posted about E. Coli OUTBREAK: 100,000 POUNDS of Salad Recalled.
        How many is that this year? Daisy has posted about them in the past.

        The real problem is ease. Convenience. Americans rather would pay a few pennies/bucks more so they dont have to take the time to wash the lettuce themselves. I say ship the produce with the dirt still on it. Let the onus (i.e. responsibility) be on the end user.

        Since one of the beef recalls, I stopped buy ground beef years ago. I grind my own. I know of people who think that is too time consuming. Too much work to take a chuck roast, cut it up, put it through a grinder. One complained about the effort to clean the grinder. Takes what? An extra 5-10mins?

        • There’s a shocker. A career gov’t employee agreeing we need more gov’t. And what you call a desire for convenience, I call laziness and selfishness at the expense of society.

          You’ve got a serious case of cognitive dissonance going on to think that more power given to the FDA will solve a problem overseen by the FDA in the first place.

          More Government is ALWAYS the wrong answer…unless you’re living in total anarchy at the time.

          Stop encouraging the Communists.

          • One, I am not a career government employee. Once a Marine, Always a Marine.

            Two, if you had any degree of reading comprehension, you would of seen what I posted about ease and convenience is laziness.

            Three, the only place I am encouraging the “Communists,” is in your own little mind.

            • So you’re saying you’re a one tour wonder. Good to know. If you’re that proud of it, why didn’t you pull your 20 and retire with pension?

              Something about this story just doesn’t add up.

              For the record, I agree with your lettuce washing comment. You should have led with that instead stroking the ego of someone who thinks more government is the answer to anything and everything.

              That’s just Commie think whether you want to admit it or not. And if that’s your opinion, well, I’ll defend your right to say so…but I will never agree with it. Everything going on in Washington today is a direct result of that school of thought, as is the very existence of the Deep State.

              You aren’t one of those Deep State, One World types, are you? Because supporting ever increasing regulation by unelected bureaucrats is how you you join that club.

              • Charles, 1stMarineJarHead is a personal friend of mine. He’s a great guy. I think you two must have just gotten off on the wrong foot because you’re both good-hearted people.

                • My perspective is understandably different from your own. That having been said, I hear you loud and clear.

      • Salina is probably totally determined to remain an INFANT. But those of you willing to grow up, please realize that the regulatory agencies have FAILED us. They have joined the enemy and do nothing more than oppress small competitors of the big guys. It’s called “regulatory capture.”
        Since pollution and the suffering caused by industrial poisons are REAL, we do have to find ways around it and find ways to handle the situation. Pretending the guv is doing what they are paid to do is not one of those ways.

  • First off: the Navajo Nation as with all native Americans are recognized as separate sovereign nations. As such,one would think that their tribal government is responsible for their people. How many billions do the casinos pull in each year? How about accountability from the tribal leaders to their people? Dont forget what $ they get from US taxpayers?

    • Yeah, the “gift” the native Americans get from the federal government is the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA), which doesn’t want Indian tribes to thrive. Because if they thrived, then they wouldn’t need the BIA. The BIA wants Indians to be wards of the federal government, so they can keep their jobs. The casinos don’t pull in enough $$ to cover all the economic growth that the BIA prevents.

      • I wish you were full of it, R.O. about BIA, etc. But we may soon show far more respect for the wisdom of these tribes and honor them as they should be honored. I hope so.

  • Since the government wants to oversee every aspect of our lives, they need to be held accountable for mismanaging the basic infrastructure of our states’ resources. There is zero excuse for polluted water like in Flint, Michigan and elsewhere. Zero excuse for forests abutting power lines so overgrown and with dead, dry brush that wildfires keep springing up.

    Problems like these will only spread unless those responsible are held accountable, but so long as political partisanship is allowed to breed unchecked, accountability will take a back seat to bringing the vote to the flavor of the day candidate.
    Disgusting! Vote out ALL of the do-nothing pols and get people in who can get the job done!

    • Miss Kitty,

      I’d go one step farther. You’ve correctly identified the problem, but (and forgive me for saying this) I think you’ve missed the mark on the solution. The solution is not different government…it is LESS government.

      “He governs best who governs least”

      Entire bureaucracies need to be put to the flame. Departments and Agencies need to fall like cord wood. There are entirely too many non-essential people suckling at the Government teat. They all need fired so they can go forth and learn to be PRODUCTIVE members of society for a change.

      Everything this bloated Government touches rots on the vine and turns to crap. EVERYTHING. It’s time to get back to basics if we’re going to survive.

  • I went almost a year having to do dishes in a dish pan and then dumping it outside while our drain was plugged. It was tiring but I knew a lot of people had it worse. Plus our old washing machine takes 4-5 hours for one load but grateful its still plugging along. At least I have running water!

  • It’s like watching a game of Jenga — little supporting logs get pulled out here and there until the entire structure can no longer sustain itself. A controlled demolition in painfully slow motion.

    NorCal naturally has plenty of water with plenty of reservoirs. Central CA and LA county get their water from the snow pack in the Sierras. The rest of SoCal draws from the Colorado River and local reservoirs.

    • You just described the Cloward/Piven Strategy perfectly! Basically, collapse the system by overloading its capacity to function…then step in and install your own Communist regime in the vacuum. It’s a “long march” strategy, hence the “slow motion” effect.

      It appears to be working, doesn’t it! The entire State is on the verge of implosion. That controlled demolition is going to be a lot messier than they imagine though. Just wait until the Oroville dam busts from lack of infrastructure maintenance (gov’t sabotage) and a few million corpses get washed straight out to the Pacific Ocean.

      Then you’ll hear about a “water problem”! TPTB aren’t taking into account the level of outrage, chaos and violence that will be unleashed on them when they try to form their dystopian empire. Unlike the Japanese, Americans believe in placing blame FIRST and then solving the problem.

  • A story from long ago in rural non-electrified Missouri

    When outhouses and family water wells were common, county water inspectors had their place in that era. When it was time to check the water quality on such properties, the water inspector would pour some kerosene down in the hole in the family’s outhouse. If in a day or so the family complained that their drinking water that they had pumped or bucketed out of their well was now tasting like kerosene, the water inspector knew that the family had bigger problems than just the kerosene.

    That point of that story is that every era has its own body of how-to knowledge — which often doesn’t get passed on to succeeding generations that may or may not ever need to revert to previous technology.

    About getting clean drinking water when government won’t cooperate

    Daisy’s article mentions the water quality problem that the colonias have. There’s a useful lesson from those communities. Sharon Buydens used to work with the El Paso Solar Energy Association and oversaw installation of hundreds of passive solar distillers for families because local governments had rules in place that prevented them from providing clean water like we’re used to. The design looks a bit like a pool table with a glass top [like a scrap sliding glass door, eg] on a slant. She shows how anyone with even minimal DIY skills can build one via her print or Kindle book on Amazon, here:

    She solved all the problems that various YouTube video uploaders have struggled with, from how to seal the wooden box to what slant angle works best for that glass top, etc. The system works when there is sufficient sunshine — no electricity or government needed.


  • President Trump’s first priority when he assumed the office should have been the restructuring the EPA due to all the problems it has documented over the past 20 years.

  • Well these are the consequences of a greedy Dog Eat Dog capitalistic country like the United States.

    These problems wouldn’t appear in socialist countries.

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