Monday, April 11, 2011

Some Thoughts About The Economy And Micro Homes by Walt Barrett

   I haven't had a chance to write very much this year.  With this terrible economy we have had for the past couple of years we have had to fight hard for every nickel.  Then to add insult to injury I have had four minor strokes this year, if you can ever call a stroke minor.  So My son John, who has been basically running things for a number of years now anyway, is carrying on with the businesses, and I am really going to take life easy.  However, writing, film making, and inventing stuff is still fun for me so I will continue to do that.
   It's no secret that I grew up very poor, and worked in the mills. That fact should explain my never ending concern for the poor and disadvantaged.  I want to talk a bit about the business of micro homes, and micro apartments because the subject really ties into poverty.   I knew when I saw the micro home trend coming back over the past few years that the micro home revival was going to be a bumpy road to travel for many reasons.  It's mostly the laws in each city and town that are jamming up the works.  Smaller homes  mean smaller tax evaluations, and most cities and towns never met a dollar they didn't want to wrap their arms around.  I sometimes wonder if these politicians ever even realize that they are actually white collar criminals  with the deals they are pulling in their daily activities wasting our tax money.  Because of all this corruption we are going to continue to have major economic problems in our cities and towns, and things are going to worsen to the point where these cities and towns start folding one after another.  I have predicted this before in my writings over the years.  We are starting to see it now.  You cannot spend more money than you take in, and you cannot tax the people to death trying to pay for your excesses.  Over spending has been the downfall of every empire in recorded history.  Eventually the taxpayers will rise up and solve the problem one way or the other, and their solutions have not always been kind in other countries, take France for an example, and I would hate to see that.  So where do you come into all this?  Well you just don't want to be living in one of those cities, or towns when the food, the fuel, and the Beer runs out, and the rioting starts. It's going to be be worse than amateur night in Rwanda!   When, not if this happens is the time to have a fall back position.  For instance, A remote micro home that is self sustaining, far from the city, the rioters and the looters is not too shabby of an idea.  If you think I'm being extreme just go back and check history in similar cases.  You can start with the middle east recently.  Anyway, all I'm saying is that hard times are coming, and living is going to become even more expensive and you must start taking even more defensive measures.  Smaller homes are less expensive to build, to heat, and to pay taxes on.  What's wrong with thinking about that?  You have to protect yourself and your family these days because the politicians are behaving like they are determined to trash the lower and middle class Americans, and nobody votes anymore so they are getting away with it.  We have money to fight wars and give away to everyone except war veterans and needy Americans.  Don't kid yourself, both parties have given away the store!  I already know that at age 78 I have already seen the best years of America, and they are far behind me. What a country we used to be.  It's all downhill from here and the public sits idly by and doesn't even pay attention, how sad is that.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Preparing for and Surviving Natural Disasters by Walt Barrett

    I have decided to do a series of short pieces about surviving natural disasters. I'll keep them short so you won't get bored.  I'm not trying to frighten anyone, but it seems that we have been having more than our share of natural disasters in the world lately.  We seem to be in some kind of a cycle.  I think that we should all take steps to prepare for bad storms and earth quakes etc.  I'm not basing my suggestions on superstition, but just on the hard facts.  It doesn't cost a fortune to put aside a stash of water that you can bottle yourself for instance, or some kind of food supplies that do not require refrigeration etc.  Home security will also be much more important if those hard times ever do come.     Again, if you live in a cold climate you better find some alternate ways to heat your home.  The heating projects can all be DIY (Do It Yourself) utilizing salvaged materials.   
   We have a lot of diesel generators in stock for our business and always keep one fully serviced on hand.  We use diesel because if we have to we can run it from our fuel oil tank.  We also stock gasoline units but prefer diesel.  We have a well so it's nice to be able to run the water pump and also to have electric lights. We are going to talk a lot more about emergency lighting in another piece. 
We'll also be talking about all the various uses of solar for survival in the very near future.
 The 5000 watt generator we use is pictured below.  
Stay tuned
Walt


Ten wacky and unexpected uses of solar power
http://www.treehugger.com/galleries/2011/03/10-wacky-and-unexpected-things-using-solar-power.php?page=1 

Preparing for and Surviving Natural Disasters by Walt Barrett

    I have decided to do a series of short pieces about surviving natural disasters. I'll keep them short so you won't get bored.  I'm not trying to frighten anyone, but it seems that we have been having more than our share of natural disasters in the world lately.  We seem to be in some kind of a cycle.  I think that we should all take steps to prepare for bad storms and earth quakes etc.  I'm not basing my suggestions on superstition, but just on the hard facts.  It doesn't cost a fortune to put aside a stash of water that you can bottle yourself for instance, or some kind of food supplies that do not require refrigeration etc.  Home security will also be much more important if those hard times ever do come.     Again, if you live in a cold climate you better find some alternate ways to heat your home.  The heating projects can all be DIY (Do It Yourself) utilizing salvaged materials.   
   We have a lot of diesel generators in stock for our business and always keep one fully serviced on hand.  We use diesel because if we have to we can run it from our fuel oil tank.  We also stock gasoline units but prefer diesel.  We have a well so it's nice to be able to run the water pump and also to have electric lights. We are giung to talk a lot more in aqnother 

Saturday, March 19, 2011

A Treated Lumber Foundation For Your Micro Home - A tip from Walt Barrett

   Many of you know that I am personally interested in building micro homes due to the all around savings in money, materials, and operating costs.  I am constantly searching for ways to get the costs down so as to make these tiny homes available to all people in spite of their income bracket.  Well I have had suffered three strokes since the first of the year 2011 and do not have enough time anymore to write all the articles that I would like.  So I have solved the problem by finding articles that are already written that I think will fill the bill and provide you with links to those web sites.  I am not taking credit for the articles.  I am simply pointing you to them.   I think that every small home should have a full or raised ranch type basement.  It only makes sense to have a warm place for your utilities so they will not freeze.  It can also provide extra living space if planned properly.  I believe that Treated lumber foundations have been vastly overlooked.  Here is a link that will point you in the right direction.  http://www.doityourself.com/stry/treated-wood-foundations-explained
If you find these articles helpful please comment back to me.  Also, all suggestions are welcome.
Thanks,
Walt

Sunday, March 13, 2011

America Is Going Roman by Walt Barrett

   If you have ever been without heat in a cold climate then you know that it's no Sunday picnic.   From the look of the world news lately there is an excellent possibility that we are soon going to experience some very high fuel prices and possibly even some fuel shortages by next winter.  That's how things seem to be working out these days.  Personally, I am starting to prepare now.  We are taking steps over the summer season to further increase the efficiency of our new energy efficient home. We are also installing a back up heating system that does not use oil, and designating one of our smaller  rooms to be used as a warm room heated by an alternate heat source, and using our motor vehicles very sparingly.  It saves money while cutting down on fuel consumption.  When consumption goes down, fuel prices go down and that helps everyone.
   If we do not pay attention to the impending fuel crisis many people will pay a heavy price. The poor and the elderly are already having problems paying their  fuel bills and taxes while many are losing their homes. What's going to happen to them when their gasoline and fuel oil bills rise above $5000.00 next winter?  This is just the beginning of a major breakdown in our economy. Energy costs and taxes are going to continue to rise sharply.  The number of homeless is going to continue to climb, and the corruption and crime rate is going to be unbearable.  And all the while the politicians continue to play the same old games.
Our country is "Going Roman", and we all know what that means!
Walt