December 20, 2011
Before the economic crisis of 2008 there were few who considered the possibility of The End of The World As We Know It (TEOTWAWKI). We were aware of the threats posed by natural disasters – Tsunamis in Asia, earthquakes along the western Americas, and hurricanes in the Gulf. But the notion that the very system in which we live is susceptible to a man-made shock so powerful that it could wipe out the very infrastructure that keeps us alive was an outlier so far removed from our daily reality that it was reserved for Hollywood scripts and obscure conspiracy web sites.
But the possibility of a system collapse so severe that it could cripple our and monetary systems, food distribution networks, and emergency response services is now becoming a real concern for people all over the world.
The warning by economists that Britain is just ‘nine meals from anarchy’ is brutally borne out. Unlike last summer, the rioters on the streets aren’t looking for trainers and flat-screen TVs — just food.
An absurd fantasy? Perhaps so, but in an increasingly uncertain world, such a scenario can no longer be dismissed out of hand. And strange as it may seem, it’s one that many believe is worth preparing for.
Across the country, steps are being taken to cope with such a situation. But not by central or local government. Their contingency planning for such an emergency is focused on the most important and most vulnerable in society.
Instead it is ordinary people who are taking action: stockpiling their larders with non-perishable food, buying water-purifying pumps and camping stoves.
While five years ago such behaviour might have been dismissed as the activities of ‘end-of-the-world’ eccentrics, those doing so today are professionals from every walk of life.
Source: Daily Mail
In many cases it’s the people working directly within the large financial and governmental institutions that are most attune to what’s happening now – and what could happen in the very near future – and they aren’t taking any chances:
‘It is not “crazies” buying this,’ says James Blake, whose company Emergency Food Storage specialises in freeze-dried foods. ‘We get a lot of high-powered business people as customers. Most people buy insurance for their health, their house or their life — this is food insurance.
‘Of course, we hope it never happens, but if there is a major catastrophe, then money is not going to be worth much after a couple of days. It will be food that becomes the most needed thing.’
Dave Hannah and his company B-Prep sell similar products. He says a number of his customers are bankers. Their average spend is £3,000.
‘It makes you think: “What do they know?” ’ says Hannah. ‘When we’ve talked on the phone, they’ve told me: “This whole thing is going to go down.”
As the world fell deeper into crisis and more information, namely from alternative media, began to emerge about the fragility of the existing financial, economic, monetary and social paradigms, more Americans and citizens of other nations came to the realization that perhaps not everything was as under control as it has been made out to be. When the financial system collapsed in late 2008 it wiped out trillions of dollars in wealth and turned once successful middle class laborers into poverty stricken recipients of emergency services. Governments around the world, led by the monetary policy of the United States, responded by attempting to infuse trillions of dollars of new debt into an already debt-laden and over-leveraged system, with Congressional members reportedly being threatened with the real possibility of martial law in the streets of America unless they took action.
The unprecedented government intervention on a massive global scale was not enough. As it stands now, the banks of Europe are set to fall, just as they did in the 1930′s. The United States, far removed from the creditor status it held during the Great Depression, is the largest debtor in human history. It’s creditor, China, is an up and coming economic giant who has made known, on numerous occasions, that it would like nothing more than to see an end to US dollar’s dominance as the world’s reserve currency and America’s military and economic might weakened. Tensions amid nuclear allegations in the middle east are heating up with Iran, while influential countries in the region like Egypt and Syria are progressively being destabilized on a daily basis.
The world, for those paying attention, is on the brink of a major paradigm shift. And many have come to the conclusion that government really has no way of mitigating the fundamental problems we face. Many believe that the problems we face today are worse than the crisis that took hold in 2008. If there was a possibility that tanks would be needed in the streets then, how bad could it get now? Would our governments be able to deal with mass riots in multiple major cities, or a hyperinflationary collapse of the US dollar, or the downing of our electrical infrastructure resulting from a cyber attack or electric magnetic pulse weapon?
If Hurricane Katrina was any guide, then the answer is no. Katrina left tens of thousands without food, potable water, medical care or law enforcement response for a week – and that was a disaster isolated to a single metropolitan area. The issue is one of scale and resources, and as we wrote in 2009 in The Rise of the Preppers, local, state and federal government emergency responders would simply be overwhelmed if an emergency happened on a multi-state or national level:
Don’t get us wrong, emergency responders like police, fire and medical teams do their very best in the situations described above, but when you’re dealing with millions of unprepared people whose only thought at the time is to survive and “get out,” the situation can detiorate quite rapidly. Preppers understand this, and have not just reserve food, water and fuel, but secondary and tertiary evacuation routes, multiple “bug-out” destinations where they can go if something happens, and are mentally, physically and psychologicaly prepared to handle the stress.
It is, as was mentioned above, simply a form of insurance to prepare supplies like food, water, cooking materials, flashlights and the means to defend yourself when the rule of law breaks down:
‘We don’t know what’s going to happen in the future. I’m not totally pessimistic and I do have faith in the Government, but I have more faith in my store cupboard. I know we’ll have food in times of trouble.’
A wise precaution or an over- reaction? Either way, in recent years, a series of events have served to highlight the fragility of the infrastructure of developed First World countries in the 21st century.
Source: Daily Mail
Crazy or not, it’s clear that the prepper phenomenon is not limited to the fringe corners of the internet or backwoods survivalist. People from all walks are storing long-term emergency foods, barterable supplies to use in lieu of money and learning skills that will be useful in a post-collapse world.
At all boils down to this: Are you willing to entrust your life and the lives of your loved ones to government officials who will have their own families to worry about?
This article was posted: Tuesday, December 20, 2011 at 4:29 am