Knowledge Capital Excursion: Defensive Training

A month ago, we asked the Peak Prosperity audience if folks had any interest in meeting up with Chris and me in the real world to learn and hone resiliency skills.

As we said then:

Longtime Peak Prosperity readers are familiar with our 8 Forms Of Capital framework for building resilience into your life. The truly resilient person is rich across all 8 Forms.

Knowledge Capital is arguably one of the most important of these Forms because it's what you use to create value (which you can exchange for other Forms of capital). And it can never be taken from you.

So given that importance, Chris and I have been in the works of designing a series of Knowledge Capital Excursions, where Peak Prosperity readers can join us out in the real world to get "hands on" learning of key resilience skills.

The response from PP users was overwhelmingly supportive of this idea. Over 80% rated it either a 4 or 5 out of 5.

An opportunity has come along quite seredipitously that we think is a good candidate for our first event in this series: a 4-day defensive handgun training course focused on instructing people who already own firearms on how to use and care for them safely.

The program is being offered to us at a tremendous discount and is run by highly-experienced instructors at a world-class training facility.

We know that interest in this outing is strong: several dozen users have already signed up for this experience -- which takes place in Pahrump, NV from Sep 28-Oct 1, 2018 -- even though we haven't mentioned it very much on the site.

But we're mentioning it now as we've just learned there are only 12 spots left for additional folks to join us.

So if this is something that may interest you (and we recommend that anyone who owns a hangun and stores it in their home consider this), read below for more details about the event. Those available spaces may not last for much longer.

Also, given the high level of interest in these Knowledge Capital Excursions, I've reached out to leading sustainable farmer Joel Salatin about producing a dedicated event his family farm, Polyface Farms, exclusively for Peak Prosperity members in 2019. If that's an experience you may want to participate in, click here to indicate your interest to us and we'll let you know when more details are available.




If You Own A Gun, Know How To Use It Safely

The folks at Firearms Training Advocates approached us recently about an intensive 4-day gun safety and training course that they offer. FTA's mission is to increase firearms safety through professional training.

Given record recent gun sales in the US, FTA believes it’s critically important to their own safety and the safety of others, that firearms owners receive professional training. In support of this goal, FTA offers access to world-class firearms training courses in Nevada, outside Las Vegas.

And they've come to us with a 4-day firearms safety package they've put together for Peak Prosperity members. One that Chris and I think looks pretty good.

We both own guns for food procurement and home defense, but we don't train with them as much as we should. And we figure there are lot of other folks like us out there.

So we thought, for PP members who own guns and could benefit from advancing their targeting and safety skills, this would be a good inaugural Knowledge Captial-building excursion.

Here's what FTA has put together for us:

  • Dates: Sep 28- Oct 1, 2018
  • Location: Pahrump, NV
  • Program: 4-Day Defensive Handgun Training
  • Program Costs:
    • Program fee = FREE to PP members (a $2,000 value)
    • Handgun rental = FREE to PP members (a $169 value). You can bring your own gun(s), if you wish.
    • Ammunition = ~$13 per box of 50
    • Background check fee: $50 (this is mandatory)
  • Travel, Meals and Lodging: You'll need to pick these up. FTA is arranging affordable carpooling and a hotel where we can stay as a group.

We'll all be participating in the same Peak Prosperity group for this long weekend -- we'll train together, eat meals together, and stay at the same hotel.

And we're pretty much getting the handgun training experience for free. You'd just need to get yourself there, and pay for your background check and ammunition, meals and lodging.

If you think you might like to participate and take one of the remaining 12 spots in this excursion, click the button below to email FTA and request more information:



We hope to see you at this gathering, or at a future Peak Prosperity Knowledge Capital Excursion!



This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

These are the last of the good times. How bad will it get? No one can know. How bad can it get? Now we're on better ground. Let's speculate. We live in the darkening foreshadow of a world catastrophe to be remembered for millennia to come. When it comes apart it will happen with no more warning than we have now. Each step down will be a disaster in itself, followed by worse, then worse yet, until many years later civilization becomes a fading memory told to disbelieving children. The wholly unprepared have no more than a single-digit percent chance of long term survival. Most have chosen their fate. Few have chosen wisely. Big city dwellers who believe potable water and their daily bread is "a human right', whose lives rely on contracts and connections and persuasion, who take the weather personally, who hold leisure class values even as they're being swindled into penury, who can't prepare a real meal at home and hire an illegal to change a light bulb—they won't survive. Those who live far from cities and lines of drift, who have a circle of reliable relatives and friends at a good level of self-sufficency, who have experienced scarcity or even poverty, who are experienced and well situated to hunt and fish and garden, or are already practicing homesteaders, who value self reliance, who know their home ground intimately and have prepared realistically—they may survive. We can't know how events will unfold. It's likely the first post-apocalyptic months will seem to be, if not be, the most cataclysmic. The incompetent, the deluded, the resolutely unprepared and other self-selected victims will be winnowed in huge numbers. Add to them the chronically ill and elderly, the wholly dependent tribalists of the inner city and their feral broods, and the plain unlucky. Old vendettas will be settled, chains of revenge for revenge will begin. City utilities will fail, sewage and garbage and corpses will contribute to unchecked disease . An exposed light at night will be worth your life. Enclaves will attack enclaves no less destitute than themselves. The naturally homicidal, suddenly unconstrained, will prey singly and in groups. Some uniformed enforcers of defunct martial law will go rogue. Long time readers know survivalism is summed up in my Most Excellent and Inviolable Rule One: Stay away from crowds. There's nothing in this for the survivalist. Serial gunfights and derring-do are not the key to survival. The survivalist removes himself from this pointless maelstrom, ready to defend himself and others, but aware the hard work of preparation is not over. The long term is still ahead and there's plenty of room for things to get worse. And worse they will get.

I am reminded that handguns are difficult to shoot well. Placing the bullet in a precise spot, quickly, when understress (like the other guy is shooting at you) is just very, very hard. If the bullet can’t be delivered to the intended spot, the hand gun is useless.
Remember: A person would never buy a guitar and then believe that they were a musician.

If you decide to go, are renting a gun and they have more than one type to choose from, go for a longer barrel.
Also, the gun has to fit your hand. This is to some extent a trial and error thing. For me, the 1911 pistols are an example of this. Thy feel comfortable, when I hold them, but I can’t hit the broad side of a barn when shooting one.
Most people seem to get 3 to 4inch barrels, because they are easier to carry.
Longer barrels allow for faster bullet speeds and are far more accurate. Six inch barrels are required for big game hunting, in some states.
Sounds like fun, but I live in farming country and have never worked a harvest. I’ve signed up to drive a potatoe truck for the next six weeks or so. Shortage of harvest labor is always an issue, where I live.

The Uber dashcam of the incident and the shooting starts at about 9:00 but you owe it to yourself to listen to the Sheriff’s description of the incident first to understand what has happened that led up to this self defense shooting. And then realize the defender doesn’t know the aggressor at all, and to him this threat to his life “came from out of the blue.” And this happened in a peaceful, low crime area. You just never know…
One precise shot, quickly, while under stress can be done with the appropriate training (which you’ll get at Front Sight starting Sept. 28).

I’m all for gun ownership and appreciate that despite guns being everywhere, the US is still one of the safer countries in the world in terms of gun violence. I also realise that most of the mass shootings we see hyped up in the media are false flag hoaxes designed to justify stricter gun control in order to disarm the populace for when the financial crash happens and the military doesn’t want everyone and his dog to have a gun.
But what I don’t understand is the reliance on guns for self defense, to the exclusion of other means. It doesn’t make sense to me. The officer in the video seems to be promoting the idea that if you approach someone in the wrong way you are going to get shot and that it’s OK to react that way to kill someone. Firstly, why would he shoot him in the chest? Why not go for the leg where you wouldn’t likely kill him? Secondly, why use a gun at all? I generally have bear spray with me in case I need it. On bears a gun isn’t going to protect you, only bear spray will. You don’t have to aim it well, and it will instantly completely incapacitate the other guy but do no long term damage, thereby removing possible homicide legal implications after the fact. You do have to be wary of which way the wind is blowing and you might incidentally spray other people nearby. In that case you could use mace instead which doesn’t create a cloud.
If society goes downhill I’ll be carrying bear spray and mace on my belt, not a handgun. In Canada they are clamping down hard on handguns with talk of banning them. There have been some recent shootings that have gripped the nation. I haven’t looked into the details of them but it’s possible the shootings were suspicious in authenticity like they all seem to be and I’m not sure if handguns were even use but hte authorities will use every excuse in the book to justify disarming the populace.

I agree. Firearms are definitely not the answer to every problem. Even if you have and carry a firearm, you also need a range of skills and tools to be ready to handle the whole variety of problems you may face: verbal deescalation, knowing when to simply leave or walk/run away, hand-to-hand fighting skills, an edged weapon, an impact weapon, pepper spray, etc. But I think there are some things you don’t understand that are very important to get right if you ever find yourself in a situation in which you face a lethal threat to your life (from 2 legged or 4 legged aggressors).

But what I don't understand is the reliance on guns for self defense, to the exclusion of other means. It doesn't make sense to me.
No one is advocating the exclusion of non-lethal means of self-defense, when appropriate. However, a lethal threat is best dealt with by a lethal response. (This assumes you aren't a pacifist who won't use force even to save your life when someone is trying to kill you.) The main reason for this is, if someone is trying to kill you, time is of the essence and you don't have time for non-lethal measures that may fail to stop the deadly attack before you are mortally wounded. If you watched the whole video of the Uber driver shooting, including the Sheriff's explanation, then you know that the crazed man in the truck who forced the Uber driver to stop in the middle of the road presented a lethal threat to the Uber driver. The crazed attacker blocked the road using a deadly weapon (a truck), got out of his truck and stomped angrily back toward the Uber driver with a dark object in his hand while threatening, "I have a pistol! You want me to shoot you?!" Any reasonable person would take that as a lethal threat, rapidly approaching and well within killing distance of the gun he claimed and appeared to have in his hand, and threatened to use. Fleeing hadn't worked. Now the Uber driver had 1-3 seconds to decide on a response. Pepper spray might not work. Verbal deescalation might not work. A shot to a less lethal area (a leg, which contains the femoral artery), as you suggested, might not stop the attacker from firing his own gun. A quick, accurate response with the highest probability of stopping the attacker immediately was called for, since the attacker could fire his weapon in a quarter of a second. In the opinion of most self-defense experts, the appropriate response would be TWO shots to center mass, not just one, because handguns are notoriously unreliable in instantly stopping a lethal threat. Center mass (chest) is the best spot to aim at because it's the easiest to hit and because it has the most chance of stopping an attacker immediately (though that's not guaranteed), and because you're least likely to miss and hit an innocent bystander. You must not have much experience shooting handguns otherwise you'd know hitting a peripheral area like an arm or leg (especially if it's moving) is extremely difficult under stress even for the best shooters.
On bears a gun isn't going to protect you, only bear spray will.
Not true. Bear spray may be effective in many cases, but it has failed in others. Adequate firearms are not foolproof, but they offer significant stopping ability as demonstrated in many real life encounters. When my wife and I hike where we may encounter large, dangerous animals she carries a can of bear spray and I carry a .44 magnum revolver, so we've got all our bases covered. Ideally, if the situation permitted, she'd deploy the spray first and I'd start shooting if it didn't work. However, if surprised at close range I'm sure I'd get my first shot off in under 1.0 second and it would take her about 3-5 seconds to produce the first blast of pepper spray. By then, I would have fired all six rounds in my revolver and be nearly done reloading.
You don't have to aim it well, and it will instantly completely incapacitate the other guy
You're dangerously mistaken about the incapacitating effects of pepper spray (mace is even less effective), and your overconfidence may get you hurt or killed. I've concluded you've had insufficient personal experience in using pepper spray in actual violent encounters, so consider just these two videos illustrating that pepper spray sometimes works great and other times fails, sometimes with tragic consequences for the well-intentioned user.
If society goes downhill I'll be carrying bear spray and mace on my belt, not a handgun. In Canada they are clamping down hard on handguns with talk of banning them.
I assume it would be illegal for you to carry a handgun on your person in public in Canada, so by all means find some tools you can carry. Maybe you'll never be faced with a deadly threat to your life. Great! But if you are and pepper spray is your only self-defense option: good luck.

My wife took an Amtrak train this morning from Philly to Rhode Island and saw something neither of us have ever seen before on Amtrak: Amtrak Police in the three Connecticut stations were carrying slung rifles on the platform. I don’t know if I should be reassured that they were taking precautions re: terrorism on the holiday weekend or concerned they had intel about a credible threat to train passengers (which are ridiculously soft targets on most days). My wife wisely moved away from the window until they left the stations.

And gun crime in London continues to increase in spite of draconian restrictions on gun ownership and a prohibition on carrying. Unarmed London police were confronted at gunpoint by two thugs who tried to spring their partner in crime from the back of their police van. Police successfully fled without injury or without losing their prisoner, but it wasn’t a good look (or a good omen). To make matters worse, very few London officers are responding positively to their Department’s attempt to recruit more officers to be trained and certified to carry firearms on duty to fill big gaps in their armed officer corps to meet current needs. When asked, officers say they aren’t volunteering because they don’t want the liability and don’t trust their leaders, courts and politicians to back them even if their use of their weapons is strictly by the book. They fear being thrown to the wolves for political purposes if they shoot a bad guy, so they’d rather be unarmed in a violent city.

Last time I was in London, the police I saw in the City of London and the important government and top tourist areas were quite heavily armed. They had fully automatic assault rifles with large capacity magazines, holographic sights, magnifiers, etc. And the men had a look to them that didn’t suggest they’d be reticent about using these arms.
Also, in the high speed train station in Paris, young soldiers strolled around in groups of 3 with fully automatic assault rifles. In Rome, the carabinieri carry Beretta submachine guns.
So this doesn’t surprise me.

Maybe just a dry run for possible implementation of an “exit tax” to discourage the tax donkeys from leaving the great state. Put up some highway tolls, charge people at the exits that are on public transportation, etc. Tax donkeys can check in but it’s too expensive to check out.