July 24, 2014 at 9:18 pm #20077
Permajan, You are absolutely right. Each of us will have to cope where the event finds him, and there are no absolutes. I have known so many rural jerks, and outright criminals, that I don’t see any marked advantage to being in the country, e.g., I have known one farm family to set fire to and burn out the family across the road from it. There was an occasion, decades ago, when the BATF hit a sector of the Arkansas Ozarks; all the locals told on each other; everybody with a still was caught. These are not communities like Selco’s in which everyone is everybody else’s cousin. Too many rural communities have too many creeps in them who are willing to sell each other out and even murder each other. If you’re a Mormon in a Mormon area, okay but, if you’re in an area of varied population and in which everybody is screwing everybody else, the food advantage of the countryside quickly gets cancelled.
At the same time, it is likely that there will be an explosion of individual food production in city homes. First, it was raised-bed gardening; then it was square-foot gardening; and lasagna-gardening, with no actual soil; then hydroponics; now aquaponics; parallel to the aquaponics frenzy which is in full swing, there is starting vertical gardening. It is becoming very easy for one family that does such things to feed itself AND its neighbors. The traditional model of all food coming from the countryside can quickly become a thing of the past. In the city where I live, I grew much of my food for several years; I only did it to learn how and, after the first two years, did not make serious mistakes any more; eventually, I let it go because I had a stressful job, but I could take it up again in a flash and, with what I know now, be much more productive.
Ethnic communities here are fairly disciplined and well-armed. The Jews I know all have guns and practice their use; and they all do square-foot gardening. The Asians do similar gardening from their own tradition and have also learned to use guns. The Bosnians are armed to the teeth, and the first thing they did when they bought a home was set up a smoke-house. The Hispanics are excellent farmers, know how to adapt that to city lots and have nearly all gone through their country’s army so they know how to use arms. I don’t expect that the various groups will find it impossible to fend off attacks or set up trade with one another.
When I was a kid, there was an activity in our physical education classes in which we were split into two teams, each having to stay within one half of the gymnasium; then each team threw a basketball at the other team; whoever got hit had to go sit down. As you can imagine, when we saw the ball coming, we all ran like hysterics to get away from it. Then, it occurred to me to do the opposite: I stood still. The ball would come flying, and, while the others ran, I stayed put. The ball never hit me. I was always the last one standing.
That led me to question the way “everybody” did anything.
Right now, many accept unquestioningly that they “must” have a Bug Out Bag. It’s almost part of a religious creed. Yet, think for a moment. If you are running from a natural disaster, chances are there will be thousands gridlocked on the road, so, at one point, YOU WILL HAVE TO ABANDON YOUR CAR and go on foot; and, shortly after, YOU WILL HAVE TO ABANDON YOUR BAG because it’s way too heavy to carry. So what have you accomplished outfitting your car and filling your bag? NOTHING. You will simply have left valuable stuff for others to loot.
This is why it can make more sense to stay put or to carry a MINIMAL bag — just essential documents and essential survival stuff for about five days; not one ounce more.
Also, if you have your elders on board, or are one yourself, where the heck do you think you’re going in the country? You need EASY access to a hospital, not a hospital fifty miles away or more.
People need to hang loose, not be so uptight, and consider different facets of the issue. There is no one size fits all. United communities like Selco’s are few and far between in this country.
It’s like the “dogma” that you must be armed and super-armed. People tell you that Hitler got into power “because the German people had been disarmed”. This is more nonsense. Germans were never disarmed because they were never armed to begin with. And Hitler was democratically elected in a lawful election. Had anyone tried to disrupt the perfectly orderly, legal German electoral process, he would have been arrested on the spot with good reason. Like Obama, Hitler got into power because he was the candidate with the most votes. Obama, by the way, has wrecked this country; how have your millions of guns stopped him?
Do you see the nonsense that passes for dogma on this blog and on many others?
We need a lot more people who can see specific points objectively.
I had prepared for many years and got alarmed when I saw “prepping” going mainstream. That’s when I had to come to a full stop and really think. The authorities must be laughing their butts off at the lemmings who scurry to pack their Bug Out Bags and stock and fortify their survival retreats. That means that, for what is coming, the bag and the retreat are IRRELEVANT.
Think that over.July 24, 2014 at 10:50 pm #20099
Permajan, I’m a big fan of permaculture and am glad that it is growing but I think where you are coming from lends itself to a slow collapse in which people have time to get their gardens established, and even at that a high enough % of the local population doing it to sustain the community. If there is only one person on the block doing it when the SHTF, that homeowner is going to have a whole lot of folks looking for what they have.July 24, 2014 at 10:58 pm #20101
Several friends had to evacuate from their houses within minutes of notification in the last couple of years.
One couple hitched the loaded trailer up to the pickup, grabbed their packed bags, including important documents and boogied.
Their house was burned to the foundation. (Colo Springs)
Another family, had to evacuate for nearly three weeks while the fire loomed closer and worked it’s way around their property. They loaded two gooseneck horse trailers with every conceivable thing they may want or lose.
And their BOB’s. That fire came within 1/2 mile of their house. They came back for the horses.
In another situation, both these families might have “lost” everything on the road. But then again they might not.
But they would have had enough to start over, and comfortably.
Minimal for each person and location are different.
Freedom down in Florida has little need for the winter gear I keep with me year round.
Heck, we had snow just a few weeks back.
BOB’s and every other prep are nothing more than an insurance policy.
My former in-laws and I sat on the porch enjoying a couple of cold ones a few years back.
We were watching 6 different tornadoes on all sides of our location. All were on the ground, all were tearing up cornfields and wheat fields. If any had come closer to us, there was a fully stocked tornado shelter not 20′ away.
Yup in case the house or barn ended up on top of the shelter, the people inside could make it easily until help arrived.
Around here, the growing season is 90 days max. Using greenhouses one can extend that a bit.
I don’t know about you, but growing up we had a half acre garden and could put back quite a bit of food.
Not enough for a family of 4 for all year, but not bad either.
Fast forward 30 years and there’s no way I could begin to cover my needs for a family of 5 even if I green-housed my entire backyard. The labor alone is ridiculous, let alone the cost of soil (bad soil here), the greenhouse material, destroying the back yard is not an option. Kids and dogs.
Common sense says to put back some extra for a rainy day.
Our forefathers did so because they had to, we do it as insurance. Against job loss, against sickness, against rising prices, against rationing (it’s happened).
I’ve posted a link to another site before, where the writer spent 10+ months living on preps after a job loss.
The family made it through fine, thanks to the preps they had put back.
And if it’s truly become mainstream, so what.
And how would that be a bad thing?
And I think you are misunderstanding the Hitler bit.
Yes Hitler was elected. But if the population had the ability and desire to resist who knows what might have been.
As to arms, here’s an interesting read for those so inclined.
I’m going to post it in it’s entirety for comments.July 25, 2014 at 1:13 am #20112
Hey Whirlibird, it is all the global warming that Gore has been warning us about for years, LOL!!July 25, 2014 at 1:30 am #20114
Sorry but you seem to have your own version of historical facts.July 25, 2014 at 5:55 pm #20201
<div class=”d4p-bbp-quote-title”>74 wrote:</div>
Sorry but you seem to have your own version of historical facts.
74, it is not my version but a historical fact that Hitler won a democratic election fair and square. He did not shoot his way into office in the face of a terrorized population which could have stopped him if only it had been armed. There was a normal, legal vote, and no candidate had the majority; so, according to the German electoral process, there was a new vote and, as no one had the majority still, the candidate with the most votes was sworn into office. Hitler was the candidate with the most votes. No thuggery on his part was involved, so no guns were needed. It was all above board and peaceful. That seems to bother a lot of people.
The point I was making was that you should prepare as YOU see fit, not simply do what everyone else does; that you do what is convenient for YOU even if it contradicts your neighbors’ idea of preparing. There is more than one way to skin a cat like there is more than one way to cure poison ivy skin rash — you can use jewelweed or you can use Brake Clear, for example.July 25, 2014 at 6:07 pm #20208
Whirlibird, I’m glad your friends did so well with their trailers. Yet, for each such case that you point out, I’m sure that you yourself can point out another in which people were forced to abandon all they were carrying.
I’m only saying that people should do whatever they do because they themselves think it’s best, not because others do it. “Monkey see, monkey do” is not always a good survival policy.
I’ve been through my share of major floods, major epidemics and some earthquakes and, each time, I’ve had to do something different. What others thought needed to be done was never the issue.
What is truly alarming is that much of what befalls us is done to us on purpose by those much higher up. Remember what Franklin Roosevelt said: “People think things just happen. Nothing just happens; it’s all planned.” So, if we all do the conventional “preps”, we shall likely fall right into the trap they’ve set. They know perfectly well what preppers do, and I’m sure they’re laughing and laughing and laughing.July 25, 2014 at 7:53 pm #20220
Hello all. I’m new, and this will be my first group discussion post – I am honored to join you!
Everyone here brings up excellent points of debate, and in the end, it is ultimately up to each of us to determine what our idea comfort zone is in terms of Urban/Suburbia/Rural locations. I am, like Permajan, in what we’ll call a “Hybrid Suburb” setting where each neighbor has 1-2 acres of property. I already had a plan in mind when I moved here, and was pleasantly surprised to see how friendly everyone was. A week after moving in I knew ten of the fifteen families on the street, all having come over with a welcoming gift basket. NOT at all what I was expecting! After over a year here we have become very good friends with the family directly across the street (the only house we can see, actually), and more than casual neighbors with everyone else. Block parties, dinners at each other’s houses, etc. As always I keep my preparations hidden, but what I see in these people gives me hope that even those who are NOT preparing could learn quickly. Some have gardens. Some raise ducks. I think with the right leadership it could quickly become a community that banded together in defense, though time would tell. And I have no idea if any of them are just not openly preparing.
This brings me to a second unexpected situation that arose from moving to the “Hybrid Suburb”: how much I have grown to care for the neighbors we have become good friends with (Mom, Dad, two kids). I know there is a “Me and Mine” mantra that is essential, but at what point does the affection I have for these people actually MAKE them “Me and Mine”? I had more than a few hard nights thinking about that: could I live with myself if the sweet little girl across the street who literally runs out of her house every afternoon to greet me when I get home from work was dying of starvation, or if I saw her mother (who brings over plates of goodies and awesome conversation whenever she bakes, which is all the time) suffering from an infected cut I could stitch or had antibiotics for? The short answer was no. So without them knowing, I added them to my stockpile (in addition to the unprepared people I’m already accounting for), but it was enough to ease my mind that I’d be giving them a fighting chance (as well as adding to our own numbers of people we can trust). I know there are people who will condemn me as weak (or them for not having the foresight), but there is a line every person has to draw for themselves. Urban, Rural or Suburban: tough choices will have to be made.
Hope everyone is having a great Friday.July 25, 2014 at 8:05 pm #20222
You extra stock anticipating addition people is an excellent thing for you to do. I’m certain it will pay big divdends to you. You will need additional numbers in your group, so people you know a like are a good place to start.July 25, 2014 at 8:30 pm #20224
Amanda11, perhaps you can casually steer the conversation with your neighbors around to subjects like H. Katrina or a power failure or house fire that has happened to someone else, and how good it is to have some essentials on standby, “just in case”. Many people can see the sense when prepping is presented in what I call a Level One Plan, without them even being aware they are prepping.
This is advice I often give to those who might be afraid of worst case scenarios that preppers often think about. Most people don’t like to be frightened, or think about worst-case scenarios. But they often can see the sense of having some extra food and meds, some bottled water, extra pet food and toilet paper, toiletries and tampons, some batteries and torches [flashlights], and some ready cash and fuel. This level of prepping can help people through a temporary hump, which is the more likely sort of crisis that happens to people.
If more people would become prepared even to just this level, law and order would be less likely to break down so quickly when something goes wrong.
Bugs Bunny: "I speak softly, but I carry a big stick."
Yosemite Sam: "Oh yeah? Well I speak LOUD! and I carry a BIGGER stick! and I use it, too!" BAM!July 25, 2014 at 8:38 pm #20226
Amanda11 it looks like you located to a great area. elijah has some great point that I would do too.July 25, 2014 at 8:56 pm #20232
Amanda11, I am glad for your contribution here.
Real SHTF scenario gonna be full of hard choices, it is impossible to avoid it, sooner or later you will come in the situation when you have to save resources for you and your family only.
Elijah gave some good suggestions about conversation with neighbors, go easy and with scenarios that are easily understandable for everyone, it is good start.July 25, 2014 at 11:19 pm #20242
These are excellent ideas, thank you Elijah! I’m finding it a little difficult to figure out which possible scenario to use to approach the subject, and have found myself hoping a summer storm might knock out power for a while to segue the conversation. The amusing irony is another of my “home requirements” when searching to buy property was buried electric lines, so that might be out the window. I’ll definitely figure out a way to approach the subject in the coming months.
This is my first planting season here as well, so I’m still adjusting to what areas get full sun, what get partial, and what is 100% shade. I was able to clear out a good bit of the 15+ years of backyard overgrowth with good old fashioned shovel digging (focusing more on clearing and transplanting perennial herbs/edible flowers from my old house this year), so by next year I should have a good grasp on where to put food crops, along with plenty of space for it. The front and side yard gardens will hopefully be next summer – it’s always a process, but there is nothing like coming home after a long day and digging in the dirt!July 26, 2014 at 2:36 am #20249
Welcome Amanda11! I understand completely your help the neighbors dilemma because I’d have a hard time myself turning anyone away that I like. I’m not sure how many people I’m prepping for and so I just keep adding to the pile. A part of the reality that many don’t want to acknowledge is that when the SHTF it will be very difficult for any family unit to just barricade themselves in their home forever. Sooner or later you will have to go outside and the odds of you fending off your entire neighborhood let alone the rest of the town are slim to none. The whole neighborhood will have to work together if it is to survive. Few will heed the prepping message beforehand, so just keep adding to your pile and be ready to organize the rest and lead them when the time comes. We preppers have the added advantage of having gone through the mental adjustment that a SHTF scenario entails. We’ve known it was possible, and perhaps probable and we won’t be like deer caught in the headlights. Many of your neighbors will, hence be ready to lead.July 26, 2014 at 3:31 am #20252
I think at some point, if you have the right kind of neighbors, and it sounds like you do Amanda, they become tribe and thus more ‘us’ than ‘them’. You are fortunate, if that truly turns out to be the case.
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.