One of the best moves I made was to start “Prepping for the Worst” in August 2021, after I saw how the pandemic supply chain problems and Biden’s move to unreliable ‘green’ energy put everything at risk:
I don’t mean to alarm anyone, and I’m not panicked. I’m just concerned, and thinking the unthinkable….
The pandemic made clear we live on a thin line that can be disrupted. It’s not unthinkable that our key systems — the electric grid, natural gas supply, gasoline — could fail….
So all in all, I no longer view “preppers” as crazy. Maybe they were right, just early. Better early than late.
I don’t plan to be late….
I have so little faith in the people running this country at various levels that stocking up on long shelf-life food and other prepper-lite protections seems to me, for the first time in my adult life, to be one of the least crazy ideas.
The post generated a lot of comments and good suggestions, showing that much of the readership was thinking along the same lines. In just the year since then, the prices of what I purchased have soared, I’m estimating by 30% and in some cases 50%. I’m glad I acted when I did, but if you haven’t yet, better to purchase now, because prices aren’t dropping.
We followed up in August of 2022 with an online event, VIDEO: Prepping For The Worst – Basic Survival Strategies For Everyone,
The presentation by Lisa Bedford confirmed much of what I had done, but highlighted what remains a big gap in my own preparations:
Her presentation focused having a methodical approach centered on “The 8 S’s”. I found that really helpful in how to think about an overall approach, rather than being random and reactive.
The presentation also focused on relatively short-term (30-day) preparation, rather than what it would take to live completely off the grid for longer periods in case of complete collapse. I think people need to be prepared for a longer period, but for most people in most places, the first 30 days are critical.
While personal security was addressed in passing, this was not a self-defense presentation. That’s another issue which needs to be discussed separately.
Last but not least, her presentation focused me on water. Water. And more Water. It’s the hardest thing to do in many ways because water is such a critical immediate need and the quantities needed are more than most of us have handy. So water solutions are something I’m definitely focused on:
“It’s easy to buy 30-days worth of food. That’s easy. It’s the water that really worries me.”
Better late than never, Bloomberg News ran a post today The Preppers Were Right All Along:
Preppers, as the community of bunker builders and food hoarders is known, emerged during the Cold War as fears of nuclear holocaust drove some people to go to great lengths to prepare for survival in a burned-out world. But as the movement persisted over the decades, it has been mostly ignored by mainstream society, myself included, which came to view preppers mainly as paranoid radicals.
So it’s more than a little uncomfortable to confront the reality that this fringe industry is increasingly mainstream. In fact, in an era of growing environmental volatility and geopolitical unrest, Augason and his competitors appear downright prescient, maybe even pragmatic.
Disaster after disaster has reminded us all of the disturbing premise underpinning prepper thinking: We’re increasingly at risk of being cut off from our normal food supply. One recent report predicts that the survival food industry, which now produces very roughly $500 million in annual sales (privately held manufacturers don’t like to share their numbers), will grow by $2.8 billion by 2026.
The growth of this industry speaks volumes about the fear mindset that has crept into mainstream consumer behavior. You probably have at least one friend, colleague or neighbor who has been toying with the idea of becoming a “prepper.” Maybe not building a full-on bunker, but lining their pantries with long-storage food in the event that another major storm, blizzard, wildfire or another public health crisis hits.
I wonder why prepping “has crept into mainstream consumer behavior”? The Bloomberg article centers on “climate change,” but the reality is that it’s the dangerous policies of the current federal government and many blue state governments which are strangling energy security and production for political purposes. From cancelled pipelines to increased red tape, we are being strangled of reliable energy supplies. New England faces natural gas shortages this winter while diesel fuel that makes the economy run is unsustainably expensive and in short supply.
If in August 2021 we were on the edge, we’re hanging over it now. Long term water is still a worry, but the new potential natural gas shortage took me by surprise – if we lose both natural gas and electric, I’m pretty screwed over for heat (we don’t have a fireplace). So I still have some things to sort out.
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