Knowledge to make your life better. If you have some free time, check out some of these links this weekend.


So You’ve Decided To Buy Eclipse Insurance

The hysteria over this eclipse is truly baffling to me.  As usual, Paul injects some sanity into a world filled with lunacy.  On the morning of the eclipse I’ll be driving home after teaching in Dallas all weekend.  Both the Austin suburb where I live and the Dallas range where I will have been teaching are in the direct pathway of the eclipse.  I’ll report back if I-35 turns into something like Mad Max on my drive home.

If the highways turn out to be as bad as they are predicting, I’ll just pull over, don my eclipse glasses, and enjoy the view while everyone else is getting apocalyptic.



Byrna Less Lethal Shotgun Ammo: Field Tested

I hear the Byrna less lethal products incessantly advertised on all the major conservative talk radio programs.  Please don’t buy into the hype.  Less lethal out of a 12 gauge has always been problematic.  It often doesn’t work well.  When you see most smart police departments replacing their 12 guage less lethal launchers with those that fire 37/38mm rounds instead, that should be a clue.  I don’t see a useful role for this round in the normal Earth Person’s arsenal.



Small Fixed Blades for EDC


Chris Fry shows some excellent options for carrying fixed blade knives as defensive tools.  As all of you who have taken my knife class know, the fixed blade is clearly better for self defense than the folder.   If you are looking for the TDI knife or the LDK knife that I designed (pictured above), the cheapest price is usually on



Survival & Austere Medicine Book – FREE DOWNLOAD

This is an excellent reference and the price is right.  Download it and add it to your survival library.




Massad Ayoob puts the current events in Haiti in perspective.



Which Antibiotics To Have For Survival Settings?

Some information about choosing antibiotics for survival situations.  If you are going to have an antibiotic stockpile, you need a book like The Sanford Guide to Anti-Microbial Therapy to learn about indications, adverse reactions, and dosage of these drugs.  Also if you are relying on the “fish” or “bird” versions of these antibiotics, your time to order them may be limited. 

The FDA closed the loophole that allows folks to purchase these drugs without a prescription last year.  They recently sent out letters ordering the companies continuing to sell them to stop doing so.  Most outlets are still selling these antibiotics, but I don’t know for how long.  My favorite source for veterinary antibiotics is Cal Vet Supply.



Why Crime is Really at an All-Time High

Police agencies are struggling to find candidates who want to be officers.  there is a severe police personnel shortage nationwide.  In many big cities, you will wait on hold for up to an hour to get a response to your 911 call.  The cops aren’t coming out to take a simple theft report anymore. 

I predict that crime will skyrocket in the next few years, but formal crime stats will show less crime.  When people stop calling the cops to report crimes because they know the cops won’t show up, we see a “drop” in the crime rate.  Don’t believe it.

I’m teaching in California today.  I’m staying in a very nice southern California suburb.  All the expensive merchandise at Wal-Mart, the local grocery store, and the gas stations I’ve visited have been completely locked up.  You have to get the clerk to unlock the cooler at a gas station if you want to buy a six-pack of beer.  Do you think those are rational responses in an environment where the crime rate is decreasing?




I’ve seen this strategy several times as an expert witness.  The prosecution attempts to use the violation of police policy as evidence a crime has been committed.  The two are not the same thing.  My cop friends who have any other career opportunity should really be working an exit strategy quite quickly.  I can’t visualize any future situation where it becomes easier to be a cop in today’s world.  Get out before you get killed or go to prison for doing your job.



Max Michel 7x7x7 Drill

I have quite a few shooting drills for you today.  Try this one first.  Twenty-one rounds and two reloads in seven seconds is quite a sporty challenge.  If you carry a pocket pistol, try the Wizard Drill.  If you like shotguns try the Reedy Practical Shotgun Skills Test.

And if you really want to test your skills, try the old Air Marshal Qualification.



Pat Rogers Memorial Revolver Roundup After Action Report [2023]

A review of the best revolver shooting event in the country.  I couldn’t make it to last year’s event, but will happily be coming back to Gunsite to teach the 2024 version this fall.



Junior Marines Get Into A Donnybrook in Austin


 Even beyond the lessons John is attempting to convey, I think it’s important to note how many uninvolved pedestrians chose to stand around and watch the fight.  Don’t do that.  These kind of fights turn into shootings very quickly.  You don’t want to be anywhere near  that place when somebody in the fight draws a pistol and starts spraying rounds everywhere. 



15 Shootouts: Lessons From Ralph Friedman

It’s rare to find a cop with 15 shootouts under his belt in today’s age.  We should learn from his experiences. 



Street Warrior: The True Story of the NYPD’s Most Decorated Detective and the Era That Created Him

What I’m reading…

Here is the book that Mas references in the link above.  It’s what I’m reading this week,  I’m 2/3 through the book and am really enjoying it.



Three Shots in Three Seconds

Claude discusses a unique way to incorporate par times into your shooting practice routines.



Lost Patients

Anyone interested in learning more about mental health issues and better understanding what schizophrenic or borderline personality disordered criminals are thinking when they commit their crimes will find this podcast series useful.



Tips For Your First Training Class

You are planning on attending a formal firearms training class this year, correct?



The Next Steps After Your Concealed Carry Class

After you’ve taken your first class (see article above), Kevin shares some outstanding advice about where to go next.



Meet the small revolver that defines concealed carry

Warren discusses the new Lipseys and Smith & Wesson collaboration.  This might be the ideal snub revolver.  I ordered one each in the .32 and the .38 versions.  I should have them in hand next week.  I’ll give you all a thorough review.

Warren also wrote a great article on Target Selection for law enforcement that may also be beneficial for the armed citizen as well.




Read this article and think what you might do.  For me, I would have called the police before checking out the car.  Because the car is parked off the road in my front yard I’m thinking (in order of likelihood based on 25 years of cop experience):

-Dumped stolen car

-Drunk/high driver

– Someone hiding from the police after a pursuit

-Someone who suffered a medical emergency while driving

Because it might be a medical emergency, I’d still go out to check, but I want the cops on the way.  I’d probably stay on the phone with the dispatcher as I checked the car so that I can get medics coming quickly if I needed them.



Swaggering Around, Unseemly As It May Be

Thoughts about how the unconscious and intuitive mind can be better harnessed to provide vital survival information from my late friend Marcus Wynne.



Backup Guns: The Why and How

Although I never worked a single shift without carrying a backup gun in my police career, it would be exceptionally rare to find me carrying a second pistol now that I’ve hung up the badge.  I’m not hunting bad guys anymore.  If I think I need two guns to go somewhere, I just generally choose to avoid that location.

About the only time you’ll see me carrying two guns now is when I’m out with a lady friend who is a competent shooter but doesn’t usually carry a gun.  I’ll carry her gun for her and if there is any advance warning of something popping off, I’ll pass a gun off to her.

Lots of people don’t think about things like that.  I may also recommend my articles on passing off a backup gun as well as the difference between a “backup” gun and a “hideout gun.”



Contact & Cover Re-Visited

An interesting article for my police readers.  I agree with Erick.  I see far less reliance on contact/cover in new officers than what was drilled into our heads when I was a baby cop in the 1990s.  It may be complacency, but it may also be officer ineptitude. 

The first time someone tried to kill me at work, I had a “cover” officer.  I was searching a shooting scene for a gun while I thought my “cover” officer was watching our suspect.  The cover officer wasn’t paying attention and the suspect grabbed a hidden handgun and attempted to shoot me.

If your “cover” officer is inept, why rely on a practice that will only enhance your likelihood of getting killed?  I saw so many horrible cops in my last couple years on patrol that I made the decision to handle a lot of scenes myself because involving some of my co-workers increased my liability and made the scene less safe than if I was doing everything on my own.



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