Barbara H. Peterson

Farm Wars

rambo3There is a movement afoot to get off the grid, out of the system, and as far away from government control and intervention as possible. Some think that going it alone is the way and that we must learn to do everything ourselves. I’ve got a message for those that think like this…. Good luck with that. I’ve tried it, and quite frankly, I’m not smart enough, strong enough, or versatile enough, not to mention don’t have enough hours in the day to do it all myself. It is simply not possible to do it all unless you decide to live like the hardiest of survivalists, are trained to care for yourself at any juncture, used to a solitary existence, and never look back.

However, coming from those of us who actually live in harsh terrain year-round with winters that freeze your very bones and hard-packed summer ground that takes the best of the best to get anything to grow at all, it’s not very practical. You see, we are a species that needs each other. We need the skills that others have because quite frankly, unless you are the above-mentioned Rambo-type character, you are just like the rest of us. We need friends and we like a little bit of comfort. Eating tree bark every morning along with an occasional acorn while waiting for the skinned rabbit to cook over the fire pit is simply not going to cut it for any length of time. So, we network to survive.

NetworkingWhat does networking to survive mean? It simply means that people with divergent skills trade goods and services amongst themselves. Your network might consist of the farmer down the road who will trade you fresh eggs for your homemade bread, the lady in the back forty that raises milking goats and will let you in on a herd share so that you can have fresh goat’s milk and not have to raise the animals yourself, the mechanic working at the local store who can fix just about anything just as long as it is not one of those fancy computer-driven models, the organic produce grower who sells at the local farmers’ market, and the hay grower a few miles away who will store your winter’s hay in his barn.

Get to know the people in your neck of the woods. Talk with them, shake their hands, and become an integral part of a living network. This is real survival training. I don’t care if you can jump a creek while shooting a bear before landing on the other side. If you don’t have the skills to simply live without the stress of scraping for existence every single minute of every day, or know others who have skills and are willing to share them then you are not really surviving at all.

So, how do you start networking? It’s easy. Talk to people…

The Town Trip

The other day I started walking to town. Yes, the ground was covered in snow. Yes, it is a forty five mile hike. Why? It was something I needed to do. I didn’t walk the whole way, as a wonderful person whom I had not met before pulled over and asked me if I would like a ride. And so it began. My new acquaintance just happens to raises goats! Milk goats to be precise, and she loves them. She also works with Green Way EcoMart.

net10Green Way is a small, hole in the wall store packed full of healthy goodies. It is a mixture of locally produced soaps, essential oils, organic products and foods, as well as a parking lot goat milk/veggie market every Tuesday from 3-6 p.m. Organic veggies are grown year-round in geo-thermal greenhouses, providing fresh produce for the Klamath Basin. This is where my new-found friend was going, so, off we went to the EcoMart! I wasn’t going to miss this for anything!

net11In this tiny little postage stamp of a parking lot, people who have signed up for a goat’s milk herd share or Community Supported Agricultural program (CSA) in order to receive fresh veggies every week, line up to receive the best food on the planet – fresh, raw milk and veggies straight from the greenhouse. It doesn’t get any better than that.


net8Here is a list of some of the fresh produce available in the parking lot:

Heirloom tomatoes
Mixed salads
Micro greens
Swiss Chard

net6Herd share owners also pick up milk in glass containers.

In between customers we chatted about goats, veggies, politics, and Scripture. We shared common experiences, and found that we are very similar in a lot of ways. And we have both learned one very important lesson…  In order to survive in this country without succumbing to Big Pharma, Big Ag, and the elements of nature, you have to network.

Another link in the chain

net4So, there we sat, talking and networking with the city folk, who were absolutely thrilled to have an alternative to big box poison dispensers otherwise known as supermarkets. And do you know something interesting? The people who came for food at the EcoMart looked so much healthier than the majority of people that I see shopping at the supermarket filling their baskets with GMOs and pesticide-ridden tasteless garbage passing for food-like substances. They know. That’s why they are lining up in the parking lot for real food. We will not survive on the filth provided for us by Big Ag. These people know their farmer. They look in his eyes every week as they collect their share of the greenhouse bounty.

On the way home, I counted my blessings that a critical element of my network was found that day. This is truly survival training. So, Mr. Rambo, there is a place for you in the scheme of things, and I wish you well. However, in this neck of the woods, I prefer networking. It’s so much more fun and not quite so lonely.

If you live in the Klamath Basin area and would like to learn more about the CSA click here.

©2013 Barbara H. Peterson

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13 Responses to “Networking to Survive”

  1. beth says:

    what a great story!
    we lived in our place for over a year without really knowing many people save the lady at the only gas station in town and two of our most immediate neighbors. then we got a couple of goats. they ran off… we met some wonderful people in our community in this endevour! One older gentleman was out in the woods at the crack of dawn before we’d even gotten the kids going, looking every day for over a week. the weather that week or so ranged from unseasonable HOT to equally unseasonably cold. One other neighbor who had just moved to the area handed my husband the keys to his atv so he could get around quicker in the search. We heard at the local watering hole- the same gas station reports of sightings, offers of help. one neighbor walked his buck through the atv trails hoping he would entice our females in heat! I brought lunches, coffee and beers to the search party when i was tied down with kids, and co workers cut out of work early to search for our missing alpines! we sadly never found the goats, but the bonds built with neighbors we barely knew, and the amazing wilderness we found in our backyard i think were worth the lessons in raising goats we learned! Made me realize i’d never want to live anywhere else!
    btw the goats we have now are not the purebred oberhaslis like we lost, but safely contained and happy!

  2. Tina says:

    You are awesome for reporting this. It tells everyone their little games.

    This is help arm me and a million other small farmers their tricks.

    Can’t wait to hear the next installment when you approach the police.

    IDEA: Now might be a good time to get a video camera for your car, that you can detach and carry around; AND one for your farms, so you can see who’s jerking around on your property when you’re inside, or gone from said property.

    I know that sounds radical, but then again, Agenda 21 is radical.

  3. Irene says:

    The farm boss next door got the same calls I have received. She has an old lady voice and played the dottering incompetent finally frustrating them into helpless silence. She was laughing about it when it happened but I received a call yesterday from the animal shelter trying to get me to “admitt” farm boss needs her animals stolen by the humane sociaty because the nais caller noted she was daffy . SO, Don’t play games with these NAIS callers, RIDE the constitution because if you play dumb they will play nasty and try to get the neighbors to say you are incompetent and need your stuff stolen to prevent you from mistreating them.
    As a side note I,m writing a statement on the situation to give to the police department. It starts with the NAIS letter to the local ranches and the resultant call to those who did not answer. It includes the solicitation to me to turn in my cryptic neighbor and then the Humane sociaty call checking up on my opinion of my neighbors operation .
    I’ll tell you if the dectective laughs at me or what. My excuse for contacting the police is I truely believe the farms directly off this highway are being targeted for theaft by an organize group, possibly ALEC, a big corporate lobbying group.

  4. georgia says:

    It all seems like Heaven to me. Bless you all for being there, and for doing what you believe best to do!

  5. Scott says:

    There are a lot of people feeling this internal voice to return to a more natural state or status in relationship with the earth, her creatures and our neighbors.

    Trying to network the many “living networks” that share the same basic ideas and goals, but that might use certain “words” or “terms” that can keep people divided and separate, is a often a very difficult task. Our modern society, network, seems to prefer to promote differences in people to keep groups divided into little networks or denominations that are highly suspect of others that might be very similar, but different.

    I agree with the author of this thread that going it alone, although can be done is also a hard way to go, and rather lonely. We are social “animals” that natually long to have familial relationships and often if our natural families are dysfunctional we will seek out substitute families, or communities, networks to “walk” with others that share our same nature, character, spirit so that we can satisfy that natural instinct to gather together.

    It is my hope and prayer that many “Living Networks” of people can set aside their own little petty differences with other “living networks” that share a strong common thread running through all the different “nets” in order that their little “net” can freely “work” together in hope, faith, love and charity.

    Peace and God Bless,
    Scott in Iowa

  6. beagle says:

    Speaking of anti-Agenda 21 and networking…, we are having a community awareness meeting in our area. Check this out and please pass this info on to those you may know in these areas. You are invited to attend one or more of the six William F. Jasper speaking events
    Bill will be speaking on Regulation Overload/Agenda 21
    at the Cool and Rancho Cordova events, he will be accompanied by Sheriff John D’Agostini,
    speaking on the History of the Office of Sheriff, and at the Nevada City Event by Sheriff Keith Royal

    Contact Jan Frelick 530-885-5321,, or call a number below:
    Napa 1/28/13, 7 pm, Marriott Hotel, 3452 Solano Ave – Joan Pollard (707) 542-6790
    Cool 1/29/13, 7 pm, Pilot Hill Grange, 1701 State Hwy 193 – Also, El Dorado County Sheriff John D’Agostini on “History of the Office of Sheriff” – Dennis & Jan Frelick (530) 885-5321
    Auburn 1/30/13, 1 pm, Denny’s, 2480 Grass Valley Hwy – Jan Frelick (530) 885-5321
    Nevada City 1/30/13, 7 pm, Elk’s Lodge, 518 Hwy 49 – Sheriff Keith Royal speaking as well – Calvin Clark (530)-913-7873
    Santa Rosa 1/31/13, 7 pm, 4577 Creekmont Ct. – Orlean Koehle (707)-539-8393
    Rancho Cordova 2/1/13, 7 pm, Roy & Kathi Luke, 3552 Debina Way – Also, El Dorado County Sheriff John D’Agostini on “History of the Office of Sheriff” John Burns (916) 723-3947

    Along with Bill Jasper’s and the sheriff that will be speaking are our communities last defense against a federal government’s intrusion into our private and business lives. They are willing to be oathkeepers to uphold our constitutional rights.

  7. Tina says:

    Ooops! Another thing Irene: tell that insurance company to NOT tell the Feds, when they call to snoop, anything about your stuff.

  8. Tina says:

    This very blog about a year ago, spoke of this gestapo crap starting. Farming friends in Maine got ‘visited’. She told them to buzz off.

    Irene: you tell those government hoodlums to get lost. Don’t let them tell you it’s a census- it’s NOT. Yo don’t have to give them info.

    I believe there’s an anti-Agenda 21 group in every state. Go online to find yours- if not, start one, cuz you’re gonna need it!

    I will be moving into the wilderness in Maine soon, I’m not gonna let ’em stop me, but will be contacting the anti-Agenda 21 people to keep the jackals out.

  9. paschn says:

    As “Tina” stated above, yes, they are trying to eliminate our ability to feed ourselves as is quite clear from the laws the Blow-lies in D.C. keep passing for their masters. I’d like to point out,(again), that the frightening similarities in what is happening here and what ocurred in Eastern Europe, (Russia, Ukraine etc), during the early/mid 20th century.
    The Bolsheviks, (66,000,000 murdered in Russia), saw that the strength of the Ukrainian Christians was cored in their rural areas and saw it as a threat to “the Party”.

    Frightening similarities written of here;

    Remember, the Bolsheviks were a minority but were able to slaughter tens of millions through threats and by the use of these nations’ OWN GOVERNMENT, POLICE AND MILITARY. So much for “our boys”.

    The state and federal sanctioned attacks against striking miners, the Ludlow Massacre, the Bonus Army…..don’t make the mistake of thinking “our boys” and,(obviously), the police won’t put us down in a heartbeat to “cull” favor with their masters. When you think about it, it’s terrifying what a “fellow citizen” will do to those depending upon them for nothing more than a paycheck and a healthcare plan.

  10. irene says:

    Jerimiah !
    Ohh you called me out of the woods. I live in Montana on what is considered aa very busy highway {a fast back road in Delaware, same population but 10 times the size} I’m being targeted by telephone calls and survey letters wanting to detail my livestock and garden activities. Even if they showed up in person I think its a voilation of one of my constitutional rights to let them count and see. Besides, when Russia started quantifying the farmers the next was to exterminate them and redistribute the land to the Gov. My whole place could be enptied into one horse tairer and zoomed down the highway after a 6 foot deep snow storm with 5 minutes delay. The whole place could be stolen for a bucket of oats , Should I tell them I have x hundred goats , chickens and fruit trees at this time so they can tax me for the chickens and goats I don’t / do have later ?
    Tell whoever calls that you don’t give information over the telephone and Its against your safty to give information to any other than the insurance company on that stuff. DONT let your friends at the CSA tell how many or where their farms are. The first defence against agenda 21 is information withholding . Pleade the 5th and call on the 4th right not to incriminate yourself by giving information that can lead to your stuff being stolen. Don’t even give the parkinglot an address Require search warrents .
    Pray for me that I navigate my farm through the looming burrocracy and I’ll pray for you all .

  11. Tina says:

    I want you guys to be very careful of Agenda 21- they are trying to drive people out of the rural areas.

    We need to fight back.

    Love your blog!

  12. Karin says:

    Mr Rambo reminds me of a guy w/blog on zerohedge. Smart fellow in finance also writes about what to do when SHTF. His clothing and ‘bug out bag’ are to die for especially if you live on Park Ave.

    His list of things for said bag are almost endless and the darn thing must weight, who knows ? 100-150lbs ? Looks that heavy anyhow.

    The contents are even better. No low dollar gems for him. This is Rodeao Drive gizmoz with price tags from 500$ to 2 and up! EACH !! Good thing for him no one really desperate that knows where his car is parked sees this info cause a homeless person with sticky fingers could live for a year on selling the stuff for a much lowered price :)

    Don’t mean to be harsh, but it does go to the meat of what you say. We can’t live totally alone eating bark and all the neat gizmoz for sale at the dollar store or nordstrums won’t make us able to deal for life alone for long.

    Our common sense is a great gift. The younger versions of ourselves don’t seem to have this quality and I worry about them in the future.

    Being in our age group has it’s advantages. Sounds like you met some nice folks and had a good time to boot !

    Keep writing,

  13. Jeremiah says:

    Living off the grid it’s all depends where it’s at. We live on the marsh and plenty of oysters, crabs, fish, muskrats and deer. We can catch stuff right off the dock. The Winers aren’t very bad and a little wood stove will keep the place like toast. We don’t even have to go to the grocery store, but to get toilet paper, tooth paste and shampoo. There is only one road in and 18 miles of marsh. Nobody will have any reason to even want to come down there.
    Now if you’re living in Montana you’re going to have to have everything prepared and locked up for the Winter.