Letter Re: The Thinning of The Horde by Matt B.

Dear Survivalbloggers:
I just finished re-reading JWR’s novel “Patriots“. Anyone who has read it knows that in Chapter 21 a number was given on the percentage of the population that perished during the Crunch. This has allowed me to open my mind. There will undoubtedly be a Golden Horde, but as you will read, it will quickly and overtime diminish considerably.  

This last semester I took a human geography course which I found especially relevant to the way that a ‘Horde’ would move. In the course I have learned that in a typical East Coast suburb, there are about 5,000 people per square mile! A choropleth map of the United States shown in class illustrated that almost two-thirds of the 300+ million Americans live East of Tornado Alley. A choropleth map is one method to depict population density. The scale of the choropleth map that I was shown depicted one dot = 100,000 people. I feel that referring to the split by Tornado Alley is easy to remember since I still remember it from grade school. For those of you that don’t recall, Tornado Alley is the string of states (the Dakotas, Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas) that are most prone to Tornados touching down due to the plains. The states East of these states are home to 2/3rds of the population.

I read You’re Ready for the Outlaws, But What About the In-Laws?, by Ellie Mae and that made me think as to how the Golden Horde would thin out in a short time. She portrayed her in- laws as the diabetic-obese type. Data released from the 2011 Diabetes facts sheet indicate that 26 million Americans are diabetic and 80 million people have been deemed ‘prediabetic’. Prediabetic means the blood glucose levels are higher than average but not high enough to qualify as diabetes.

When The Crunch strikes, it won’t strike lightly, it will come with an overdue vengeance. The way I understand it, if there is a socioeconomic collapse or some disaster which renders the whole country disabled (which seems fairly easy to do), power would be the first thing to go. People attached to life support or that cannot breathe on their own would helplessly wither away. Dialysis machines would be unable to operate effectively, meaning those people with kidney and liver damage, as well as other people which require regular treatments, would have no treatment. Hospitals would have no way to effectively operate, especially without anesthesia and sterile operating tools. Oh, and good luck if anyone will stay behind WTSHTF.  Most hospitals don’t keep a large supply of sterile equipment so their supply would quickly diminish.

This will be about the same time that citizens begin looting. Most will go for material objects like jewelry, watches, electronics (but no power to use them), while others who have a family to support would raid supermarkets and gas stations, although they would still be looting. Some of the looters may have small arms like handguns, large kitchen or hunting knives, bats, clubs, and some may have hunting rifles, nothing of a substantially large caliber that could qualify as a battle rifle. Many people that don’t own a gun will begin looting gun stores. Most will be inexperienced with properly operating a firearm, which will lead to accidental shootings, thus thinning the horde by internal bleeding and resulting infection, if the initial gunshot wound didn’t kill quickly enough.

Starvation and disease are the next phase toward thinning the horde. With many people unable to fend for their own food, either by physical inability or lack of knowledge, much of the population will be weakened by lack of nutrition which leaves them susceptible to disease. Without running water or access to proper hygiene products, skin infections, dental problems, disposing of ‘waste’, and lack of nutrients, disease will run rampant across the country, especially in areas with a dense population. Dental problems are not fatal in themselves, but when a tooth is pulled, it is prone to infection and a lot of pain. Fecal matter can penetrate over 10 layers of toilet paper, so always wash your hands after going ‘number 2’ and disposing of it.

Children and the elderly are the most at risk for disease. Children are prone because of their developing immune systems and introduction to extremely harmful diseases to an underdeveloped immune system make children most at risk. The elderly are at risk for the same reason with the exception that immune systems weaken with age, especially if their body is weakened by another type of hereditary or age-dated disease.

The absence of medical supplies, surgical equipment, basic penicillin and antibiotics can turn a simple wound, into a fatal wound. Not only that, but a doctor would have to have survived the Crunch until this point and have a sterile facility to operate. Even gaining access to a facility or even a doctor, are really bad odds.

Another aspect of thinning the Horde to consider is that just because our government and economy have collapsed, nature won’t stop giving us grief! When Hurricane Katrina touched down in New Orleans, gas powered pumps were used to prevent over flooding of water to civilian neighborhoods. When the pumps failed, there was no way to prevent flooding and many people and homes perished. During a collapse, there won’t be any fuel for the pumps, there won’t be any way to get fuel to the pumps, there won’t be anyone in control and there won’t be any emergency responders. Not only that, but unless you have lived in the area of your retreat for your whole life and know the weather patterns during the year, you can and will be hit by unexpected weather. Most of us get a weather report from the internet or a news channel. During the Crunch, that will not be an option.

Given the events for the people living along the Mississippi River, that type of disaster can ruin your whole plan to survive TEOTWAWKI. For those who are unfamiliar, the Mississippi River over flooded, swallowing hundreds of homes and businesses along the river and even miles inland. Hundreds of thousands had to relocate, many of them only with the clothes on their backs. The lucky ones were able to drive out in a recreational vehicle (RV) and now there are communities of RVs with refugees. Most won’t be able to return to their homes for months to over a year. Many don’t have anything to return to.

If your area gets a lot of rain in the spring, but nothing in the fall, you will know when to collect and how much to last through the season. Hurricanes, blizzards, tornados and any other natural disasters you can think of won’t stop because our country has collapsed. Just as the pepper’s motto goes “the Crunch won’t wait for you to be prepared, you must prepare now”, Nature won’t wait for us to reinstate a government or emergency responders, you must have contingency plans in place is a disaster is set to strike.

The requirements for working against a hurricane disaster, goes ten-fold for nuclear power plants. I’m not an expert on them, but what I have gathered so far entail that nuclear reactors must be kept at a cool temperature, usually done by using water, to prevent overheating. If a reactor overheats and is unable to be cooled, another Chernobyl can occur. When the reactor melts down, the concrete shell of the reactor is unable to contain the massive amount of radioactive energy. All of this is prevented by people that work the computers. The effects of Hurricane Katrina would be rice cakes compared to the effects of a reactor meltdown. When radiation escapes into the atmosphere, it travels with the wind. There would be little hope for people in the initial radius of the plant, but the radiation could spread across several states, even continents, affecting tens of millions of people that may have survived the beginning stages of the Crunch. When the radiation escapes the atmosphere and reaches the ground, water sources and crops are prone to being radioactive.

Small amounts of radiation reached New York, from the reactors in Japan. Take the information from the news reports and how low levels of radiation have reached the East Coast of the States. If this can happen half a world away with emergency responders, think of the impending disaster with none of the information and no manpower to advert the crisis.

The effects of radiation are worse if a nuclear warhead is detonated close by or up-wind. Refer to the previous paragraph about radiation, but when a nuclear warhead is detonated, it releases an Electromagnetic Pulse (EMP). Basically an EMP releases a burst of energy which can literally fry any electronic device within the blast radius [and a considerable distance beyond, via linear coupling through power lines and telephone lines.] Unless you store electronic items in metal ammo cans, then you will be without their use for a long time.

Many of the articles on SurvivalBlog encourage us to gain medical knowledge and stock supplies and medication for our families and member of our group. The spread of disease and starvation have been talked about a lot and are a major portion of the prepping agenda. But other disasters can and will strike even when the Crunch is in full swing. If the contents of this article plus other areas that may have been omitted, the nation’s population of 300+ million citizens would be depleted to a few million citizens. As stated earlier, just because our government is in shambles, nature will still continue to have its depredations. The Golden Horde does exist, but genetics, general stupidity and nature will drastically reduce the numbers. I just hope that any people I come across are ones of sound, rational minds, and the people that reduce themselves to baser instincts of animals, pillaging and murdering, are the first to perish through any means mentioned above. If this does happen, then I may not ever have to raise my rifle.

My Suggestions

  • When scouting a location for a retreat, be sure to take into account seasonal weather, how to prepare for these conditions and take note of typical wind speeds and direction.
  • Get a large map that shows your retreat and mark where potential threats can hinder your ability to live securely. Mark where chemical factories, nuclear power plants, et cetera. Are located and in what conditions would it affect your ability to farm.
  • With recent odd weather patterns in the news, take into consideration event that could happen, even if the threat is moderate to low.
  • On the same or similar map, draw contingency escape routes in case you are overrun, mark off where hordes of people would travel that would affect OPSEC.
  • Create a travel map that would show you how to travel the surrounding areas of escape by avoiding major roads.
  • Have a secondary location and cache if your retreat were to be compromised by the Horde or a natural disaster.
  • If your yearly home and retreat are a distance away, be sure to have several routes to take to your to your retreat and maps
  • Discover if you have any venomous or poisonous plants or animals that you could encounter en route to your retreat or at your retreat. Be sure to abide by laws and research the FDA standards on all medication you are considering purchasing. Remember, we’re thinking of a SHTF scenario where it would be impossible to get access to anti-venoms, which most hospitals will keep on hand if the area has a high concentration of venomous or poisonous animals. But if you’re in an area with a concentration but hospitals have to import the anti-venom, then it would be best to have it on hand before TSHTF.
  • Get elective surgery now. Elective surgery exists to improve your quality of living. Lasik eye surgery which will cancel out your need for an eye glasses prescription. Anything that the doctor says is benign; it could become something later, so it might be good to get it removed. Seek second opinions.
  • Get updated shots, boosters and necessary vaccines as well as dental work. As stated before infection is a major concern of any operating procedure.
  • Get educated on emergency medical care. Especially dressing wounds since once the skin is broken, the wound is vulnerable to disease and infection!
  • Get familiar with performing minor surgery. This can go between patching up a large gash, a non-fatal gunshot wound, or setting broken bones or dislocated joints.
  • Get educated with firearms and how to properly use equipment. A stupid mistake or slip up will make the difference between a completed project and a fatal error.