I suppose there have been millions of people who have second guessed their choice of residence location as they watched flood waters rise, wildfires approach, or stood flat-footed, facing a tsunami. Noah’s neighbors, no doubt, had similar thoughts. ‘Maybe we should have built on the mountaintop instead of the valley.’
In typical times, we usually choose our home based on factors like convenience, scenery, affordability, and square footage. Only recently have families started to think about survival when it comes to location. Joel Skousen has made a career of helping families relocate to areas that are survival-friendly, and he’s written about this in his book, Strategic Relocation.
I purchased this book earlier this year as part of my own research into safer locations for our family. We haven’t decided to move quite yet, but when you live in a city of some 3-4 million people, and you’re surrounded by hundreds of miles of desert, well, you start thinking that maybe relocating would be a smart idea, and so began the research.
Strategic Relocation is a hefty, over-sized book of 340 pages. It can be purchased from Skousen’s website for $35, which is more than I normally pay for a book, but within just a few pages, I realized my money had been well spent.
A well organized book
The book is divided into four sections:
- Selecting a safe country
- North American analysis
- Regional and state ratings
I zeroed in, first, on my own state of Arizona and turned to page 166 to read the analysis. As a native, I figured I would be able to evaluate whether or not Skousen was accurate in his report or just blowing smoke to sell books. He correctly advised Phoenicians to live north of the 101 freeway and to avoid southern Arizona due to the high level of drug trafficking and military installations. I was surprised at the accuracy and up-to-date information. If his assessment and rating of my state were accurate then, I figured, so was the rest of his information.
The portion of the book in which I spent most of my time was Section Four: Regional and State Ratings. I wanted to see how my state stacked up to others we had considered. His ratings are based on numerous factors, including population density, food production, taxes, and gun liberty. I really appreciated his statement that most people will have to continue living right where they are, and he takes this into consideration, by state. For example, if you live in a state that has received just one or two stars, in his 5 star rating system, he gives suggestions for making the best of it.
Practical, sensible advice
His advice is down to earth. He doesn’t try to entice people to make radical or panic-based decisions. In fact, following a family camping trip in Idaho and Wyoming, I was ready to pack up and move to the forest of my dreams. But in Chapter 12, he brought me back down to earth with these five questions:
- How long will it take to be firmly reestablished in a new and safer location before things get worse?
- Do I have a fallback position, in terms of job, talents, skills, funds, reserves, etc. in the new location?
- Will there exist a need for my fallback talents in the area I am presently living, or do I have to move to find an area with more potential clients in a crisis?
- Does my location allow for total self sufficiency, if I have to revert back that far?
- What will my network be after the move? How long will it take to build it up?
These questions helped us realize that we weren’t yet ready for the move. Skousen cites a cautionary example of helping families move just prior to Y2K. They moved to safe areas, for sure, but within a short time they returned to him, now asking for help in finding a place to live where they could actually earn a living!
In addition to analyzing the survive-ability of each state and offering advice to those who live there, Strategic Relocation also includes tips for economic survival and the author’s view of how future crises will play out.
For those who may be contemplating a lifestyle of an expatriated American, you’ll find assessments for virtually every region and country of the world. Some in Central America even have programs that offer discounts and other benefits to attract “rich”Americans.
The only downside is…
There is one downside to this book. Skousen makes no secret of his own personal political leanings, which appear to be conservative with a definite Ron Paul bent. Some readers may find that off-putting. He appears to be a so-called “9-11 truther,” evident by his statement regarding the attacks on the Pentgon and World Trade Center, “…our research indicates that this was, in fact, a carefully crafted US operation, using terrorists trained under the false flag of al Qaeda – itself a creation of US and Saudi black operations.”
Now, I have no idea whether or not this is true, but this, and a handful of other views expressed in the book are considered “out there” by most Americans, and it would be a shame if any readers, or potential readers, discarded his advice because of these views.
Strategic Relocation is a valuable resource for just about any survivalist or prepper. Even if you’re not considering moving, it contains good advice and assessments that may come in handy in the difficult times ahead.
It can be purchased at www.joelskousen.com.