Reaching Out to Others May Save Our Lives, by Ani

Whenever I’d get upset about not understanding why someone was doing what they were doing or thought the way they did, a friend always used to remind me that “not everyone thinks like you do”. That adage sounds simple on the surface but I’ve realized that it is a profound truth and of critical importance to us preppers.

At the time that I’m writing this we are immersed in the COVID-19 pandemic. I watched this coming, from the earliest days when the first reports of some strange new Coronavirus associated with the market in Wuhan was briefly noted online. That made the little hairs on the back of my neck stand up as I thought, “Uh oh, SARS Take- 2”. But hardly anyone else seemed to pay attention. I watched with dread as it grew to epidemic proportions in China but it seemed that most here in the US, and the rest of the world for that matter, were oblivious, focused on other things like the impeachment proceedings or sports and celebrities. I started doing some extra preps, particularly difficult as I hadn’t bought my current home yet and was a pet sitting nomad at the time. Still, I started hitting the stores and buying what I could manage to transport back to Vermont in my sub-compact car. And making “to-do” and “need” lists, lots of lists. (And yes, being a “nomad” was a break in my preparedness but a risk I had decided to take).

I watched with ongoing dread as the first case was found in Washington state. I called my mother who lives in New York City (NYC) to “have the talk”. A lot of good that did. My mom is a city girl through and through and not a prepper. She just couldn’t even imagine that she might need to hunker down in her apartment and not leave. The idea of staying off mass transit, avoiding crowded venues, stocking up; all off-putting to her. I told her I was sending her some masks(N95). Explained what they were for and how to use one properly. And of course even as the virus was proclaimed a pandemic, as it made its way to NYC (what a surprise!) she continued to attempt to go about life as usual. Even after it got really bad there and she finally agreed to stay off the trains, she continued to take buses and go shopping in stores. (Her rejoinder: “But they’re small stores”!) My brother who lives with her did the same. And no, they didn’t wear the masks I’d provided because they didn’t “need” them , it would look weird and that was something “only Asian people” did!

Many In Denial

So what to make of this? What to make of someone I know here (high risk due to cancer treatment) who merrily traipsed off to NYC with a friend to catch a Broadway show and “do” the city the day before they finally closed the Broadway theaters? Like, “Hello? Did you not hear that NYC was in the midst of a pandemic and that you were exposing yourself(and then us back here in Vermont) to this virus?” How could they not know what’s going on in the world? But really dear reader, she didn’t. And this is an otherwise intelligent and educated woman, a retired teacher.

What to make of all the frolicking college students who headed to Florida and Texas to do spring break after their colleges shut down due to the virus? What to make of the officials in New Orleans who didn’t cancel Mardi Gras? (They’re now whining that President Trump should have told them not to do it! ) What to make of all of the travelers, hikers and other tourists who remained in the countries they were visiting despite the worsening situation world-wide and then expected their home country to fly them back to safety? What to make of those who continued to hop on cruise ships because they’d planned this trip a while ago and didn’t want to lose their money? Or those that persisted in gathering in large crowds after being told not to, filled bars and restaurants until they finally shut them down, held large weddings and all of the many other ways in which people persisted in continuing their normal activities in spite of the warnings and ever worsening situation?

I watched this all with dread as I knew that at some point, the spark would be struck and the masses would erupt in fear. And when they did, look out.

Ants Versus Grasshoppers

I think there must be some really profound difference in how ants and grasshoppers view the world. A really big difference in the thought process between those who prepare, stock up, set aside for a “rainy day” versus those who blissfully carry on living in the moment. Between those who see what’s coming and those who just carry on without noticing until it smacks them full in the face. While I’m sure that there are some preppers who are paranoid, suspicious and rather anti-social, I don’t think most are. I think that while the ones who are planting land-mines, stocking up on enough ammo and guns to outfit an entire Army regiment and building underground bunkers to weather Armageddon definitely make the news, most are not like that at all. And if that’s you, well no offense meant. If it makes you happy and feeling safe, well carry on! It’s just that I think most of us aren’t going to go that route.

It also serves to deter some from being tagged with the “prepper” label as then they figure everyone will assume they’re also holed up in their bunker waiting for Armagedden. Most of us hold “normal” jobs be it as a teacher, mechanic, gunsmith, carpenter, computer programmer or nurse, have families, friends, participate in the community and live really ordinary lives. We just seem to have the ability to recognize that our lives as they are currently set up in our technologically dependent times are precarious. That JIT ordering may mean great wealth for Walmart shareholders but is a risky way to run a business should manufacturing and transportation break down or unusual demand crop up. That sending the manufacture of most of our goods and pharmaceuticals overseas may make lots of money in the short term for the companies that do this but exposes us to risks that really shouldn’t be unforeseen as we can see it clearly. And that “bad stuff “ has repeatedly happened in the past on this earth to humankind and will continue to happen and that there are just no guarantees that our lives won’t be impacted by some sort of life-changing disaster even if it’s “just” a major storm, fire, flood or earthquake.

Inadequate Supply Chains

We are able to recognize that given that there is a really small supply of food held in our grocery stores and that in a disaster, restocking is not a given, it is prudent to stock up and have ample supplies at hand. That any sort of “Black Swan” event can cause the economy to crash and create massive job loss as is happening now, so best to have adequate food, supplies and savings on hand. That a weather disaster, civil unrest, terrorist attack, solar flare or whatever could occur with little to no warning and that we might be unable to access grocery stores, ATMs, utility power and everything else we depend on in our lives today.

So at present we seem to be divided up into two camps; those who recognize how precarious our current set-up is and those who haven’t a clue. I assume that we must all be descended from those who did stock up and were prepared for poor harvests, an unsuccessful mastodon kill or whatever. We must be as otherwise they wouldn’t have lived to reproduce and raise our ancestors. Somehow though, generations of comparatively easy living have removed this understanding from far too many people. Add to that all of our fellow citizens that are dependent on government handouts, those addicted to their drugs of choice, those who prefer to engage in criminal activity rather than earn a gainful living and that adds up to quite a number of people.

So why is this important? If the rest of us “get it” at least we’ll be prepared right? I think the obvious answer to this is that if “X” percentage of us are prepared but the vast majority of those around us aren’t, when the chips are down, I’m not sure we’re any better off than they are long-term. In many ways we are only as secure as our least secure family member, friend or neighbor. Add to that only as secure as the reach of those that can access our homes via their transportation method of choice. I know some of you do honestly believe that you have enough ammo, fencing or rocket launchers on hand to repel an invading army. Maybe you do, I don’t know. And some of you figure that you’re isolated enough that most of “them” will die out before they ever find you. Maybe that’s true. I hope for your sake that you are. I suspect most of us though are not in that category. We may live in a rural area, have a reasonable amount of preps and some weaponry on hand but there are limits to how long we could hold out and against how many.

No Pleas for Food — Yet

So right now, in the relatively early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, our fellow unprepared citizens (at least those who are now paying some minimal amount of attention) have been descending on the stores and buying them out of a variety of goods; TP, masks, sanitizer, wipes, frozen foods etc. As well they have bought every available freezer from stores that carry them, including the floor models. Chicks are flying out of the stores as fast as they can be hatched. Not everyone acted quickly enough of course. I’ve been seeing pleas on-line from people in my general region begging for toilet paper, thermometers, masks, hand sanitizer etc. and this is just the beginning. The pleas for food haven’t even begun yet but I fear they will.

Some people seem to be either blissfully convinced that they won’t get sick or if they do it will be “mild” and are continuing to regularly shop for milk, bread and other items instead of buying a number of them and stashing them in the freezer. (My own brother is doing just that so it appears that prepping must not be genetic!) I’m not sure I even want to take on the phenomenon of social media/YouTube “influencers” who lick toilet seats or shelves or deodorants or boast that they’re not worried about getting it at all (until of course they do). The disconnect in their heads is so immense I don’t have a clue how to understand or talk with them; sadly they have many followers, often young ones.

Do We Hunker in Silence?

So knowing all of this, do we just give up and prepare for the inevitability of being overrun? Do we switch to the mode of those laying in land mines, rocket launchers and building underground bunkers? How on earth do we manage to communicate with those who don’t understand preparedness and convince them of the wiseness of doing this? How do we attempt to understand the thinking of those who don’t/won’t prepare and dismiss us as a bunch of paranoid freaks wearing tinfoil hats? I think the answers to these questions are critical and our very survival may depend on this, no matter how much we’ve stashed away or prepped. If the vast majority of our fellow citizens haven’t, and don’t get it, they put us all at extreme risk.

I know I’m not the land mines & bunkers sort. I’m not going to be buying my own island. I need to find a way to understand where all the non-preppers are coming from, how they see the world and how to help them join us. I suspect that for many people there is a failure of the imagination. The existence of normalcy bias is real and huge and probably plays a large role in why people don’t see what’s happening right in front of them in time and fail to prepare.

Most people believe that things in the future will operate as they have in the past and thus fail to prepare for or recognize that the situation is changing and warrants preparedness. There is a major lack of imagination in the masses who can’t envision that things could ever be different than they are now. Many seem to have been awaiting an “official” announcement from the government that this is indeed serious and what they should be doing to prepare. And of course announcements from our government have been few and far between and sorely lacking in truth and directness when they did occur. Telling people that masks don’t work and not to have or use them for instance was just one of many terrible blunders perpetuated on the masses. Telling people that if they do have any masks that they are terrible people and hoarders who should immediately turn over whatever they have to a hospital was just plain wrong and misdirected.

As well, many believe that if things got bad enough, “they” would step in and rescue them, in this case “they” being FEMA, the government, National Guard or some other entity that they trust will feed, house and protect them. I’d like to ask them how that worked out for the folks of New Orleans during Katrina? How has that worked out for Puerto Rico? The residents of CA who were devastated by the forest fires? But somehow, even knowing all of this, the masses continue to believe that this time it will be different. And they have obviously not thought through the implications that if FEMA and our government couldn’t get it together to help in a satisfactory way when only a small portion of our country was impacted, what do you suppose will happen when most or all of the country is impacted?

I know that blogs such as this site have done wonders in terms of reaching out to people over the years and educating them. Novels such as the ones that JWR and others write are also a good way to educate people who might not pick up a guide to survivalism but would read a novel that they end up learning from.

Television shows that showcase the kooks and outliers of the preparedness movement really do a disservice in my opinion. There are probably way more people turned off by what they find there than are drawn to prepare by it. That there are many who feel they have to hide their interest in and expertise in preparedness so as to deflect mocking by friends and relatives is discouraging. Yes, due to OPSEC reasons we don’t want to let everyone and their brother know just what we have and what we are doing but I think it goes deeper than that. Many of us fear being ridiculed or treated as a fruitcake if we let others know we are preppers.

I was horrified to check out a segment of one of the “Doomsday Prepper” shows online which I’d thought was going to be about permaculture and its role in preparedness but instead discovered that the preppers featured were growing toxic plants in their forest garden, drying them, grinding them up and placing the powdered toxic herbs in their spice rack to use in food for any “unwelcome” guests. I’m sure not planning on going to their house for dinner! I guess that was the point but seriously people! When the masses view stuff like this I don’t blame them for being turned off; I sure was and I’m a prepper myself!

I feel that we’ve got to take a more public role in helping educate others. That just trusting that we ourselves have “enough” beans, bullets and band-aids stored for our own loved ones isn’t enough. Watching the progression of the pandemic at this point is very educational. Thus far this pandemic doesn’t appear to have a mortality rate approaching that of SARS, Ebola etc. It also appears to primarily be killing the elderly or those with preexisting conditions; not that this is okay but that is keeping the masses from panicking even more than they are now. I don’t even want to contemplate what would be happening at this point if it was mostly killing young people, children, had a higher mortality rate etc. I suspect that by now half of our cities would have emptied out and be on the run, in search of “safety” in a rural locale while having minimal supplies and know-how and the rest would be engaged in gun battles and raiding the 7-Eleven and Piggly Wiggly.

Maybe some of us would be okay because we do live far enough out that we won’t be found. That isn’t the case for most of us and it’s unlikely to be either. There’s a real limit as to how many remote rural locales we’re going to be able to purchase and set-up let alone earn a living on. Many of us just don’t have the money to afford a large rural acreage either. And even so, while you’re out there squirreled away in your remote hidden retreat, what if you badly injure yourself with a chainsaw? Your kid needs an appendectomy? You roll a tractor? Horse kicks you in the head? Anything can happen which will require you to access medical care beyond what you know how to handle. Most of us are not going to be able to set up a retreat staffed by our good friends the surgeon, vet and dentist! It sounds great in the prepper novels but how real is this for the vast majority of us?

I know that what I’m saying won’t resonate with some who are reading this. Some of you do fervently believe that you’ve got a secure retreat and enough preps to last for a long time so to heck with all the rest out there. I realize I’m not likely to change your mind on this but perhaps you will consider what I’m saying. I do think though that the majority of us are not in that category, realize we ourselves are only prepared to withstand so much and would dearly love to see others join us in the ranks of the prepared.

The Anxiety Factor

So where do we go with this? I think that we’ve got to use this pandemic as a teachable moment. We’ve got the public’s attention right now so let’s use it! Totally refrain from “I told you so’s” to our annoying relatives and neighbors who just wouldn’t listen, even though our frustration at always being a “Cassandra” is running high by now. Find a way to provide information in manageable doses to those who are “shutting down” out of anxiety and fear; I know a lot of people like that and it’s hard to get them to absorb the information due to their anxiety levels(my own mother is like that as are some friends). There are also a lot of people in the US taking anxiety medications; should the supply be disrupted, many are going to totally freak. We need to try to find a way to explain preparedness in a series of steps to follow. If people can see a step by step progression and the reasons for taking those steps, I’m hopeful this will help them refrain from panic buying and also feel a real sense of progress and mastery as they are able to check off the items on the list. Regaining some sense of control over the situation and mastery is critical I think.

I think that it’s important that we all try to do what we can to re-frame preparedness. I want us to be proud of being a prepper! I don’t want this to be viewed with shame. I want us to be able to totally banish the notion that we are “hoarding” supplies and keeping them from others. We need to educate people so they understand that true preppers weren’t going out there in the midst of the panicked shoppers at Walmart and Costco and buying out all the TP! True preppers already had a supply of TP on hand. True preppers stock up over a long period of time and then they use what they stock, replenishing the supply as needed. We need to “come out of the closet” as preppers! Maybe we all need to wear “I’m a Prepper” and I’m Proud” t-shirts? Fly our own prepper flag; maybe one with pictures of beans, band-aids and bullets? 😉

Make Prepping Normal

I want us to find a way to model this behavior. To reject the sensationalism of prepping. To reject the idea that preppers are just those hunkered down with their rocket launchers and land mines, hoarding 20 years worth of beans and bullets! Somehow we’ve got to figure out how to help others realize that we are just ordinary normal people who are able to imagine what can happen and we feel it is our duty to our loved ones, our community and our country to be prepared so that we aren’t standing on line at a FEMA tent someday. That if we are prepared for disasters that can happen at any time we are taking the burden of helping us off the backs of the government and other civil entities. That for every one of us that has adequate stores of water, food, first aid materials etc, that is one less person requiring “rescue”.

Furthermore, when the crisis at hand is “over”, be it the aftermath of a pandemic, hurricane, earthquake, terrorist attack, economic collapse or whatever, what will be left of our community, society and country? What do we want to return to? It’s not all that reasonable to just assume we will all be hunkered down for 20 years. What do we want to have left in terms of infrastructure, services, businesses, schools etc? If we want to preserve as much of this as possible then we need to help make this happen. We need to reach out to the business owners, the first responders, the teachers, farmers and all the rest to help ensure that they too are prepared so that they are able to continue to operate a business, fight fires, teach and farm when the crisis passes.

I know that while I (and most of you) have many issues with the direction our country has taken for a long time now, our economic system, popular culture, social media, celebrities and all the rest, I don’t think that totally destroying our society and country is the answer. I fervently hope that we are able to preserve that which is good, help others learn from what is happening now and have a functioning country when this is all over. We need to raise our voices and demonstrate why preparedness is a civic virtue and can and should be practiced by everyone, from the Millennial in the NYC studio apartment to the rancher on 10,000 acres. I do believe our lives depend on others understanding this as well.




113 Comments

  1. TPTB now have one confirmed individual to visit when they start confiscating ‘hoarded’ supplies.

    I gave up trying to educate the ‘willfully resisting’ a couple of years ago. Unless you want to advertise your preps (see the above article), you can only go so far to try to influence or educate others. I’ll be sorry to see what happens to them, but I can’t force preparedness.

    Some lessons can only be learned the hard way, so you either learn the easy way (from others) or you pay for your education. Reality sucks.

  2. Nice article, but identifying yourself as a “Prepper” just paints a target on your back when things become desperate.

    Better to keep things to yourself, unless you can afford to share your larder with your friends’ friends who just show up because they heard you had stocked up.

  3. I belong to a small crisis response organization. One of our prepping themes is: I have enough stored that I can spend my time and energy helping others instead of wasting it standing in line for food and water.

  4. Ani, you are writing about me and all the efforts I’ve put into trying to get those I know and love to think about what could happen/is happening.

    Great article. Your finger is right on the pulse of being a “prepper”.

    Thank you for your perspective.

  5. Seth is right on the money about not letting people know you are a pepper. When things get worse guess who will be knocking on your door.Remember in WW11 the saying;’ Loose lips Sink Ships.”
    Right now our news people are not talking about the next big “Plague”. There are Locust in Africa of Biblical portions. They are eating their way thru Ethiopia,Kenya, Eritrea, Somalia,and Sudan. Locust will eat as much as 32,000 people day would eat.
    There will probably be starvation all over Africa. Guess who they will call on for Food the good old USA.
    I suggest all you folks keep up on your preps as thing try to get back to normal. Also look for drought in the Southern state this summer. This may cause food shortages of some grains and other crops.
    Folks I have lived 81 years and have seen a lot and with all that is going on in our country our way of life will not be the America my ancestors help build. We must look to the Lord for help and guidance.
    My people settled in America in 1746 from Scotland after the English killed all the people but one woman in the Village. There “Crime” was they were protestant and could read and write.

    Gods Blessings to you all.

    The Gman

  6. You cannot help those who will not help themselves. These are the same people who wait until the last moment to go to the store when there is a hurricane approaching.
    Anyone with any sense could see this coming back in January.
    There will be no great awakening for people to prep. The masses are too used to having their hands out. No realization that the just in time food delivery breaks down very quickly.
    What they will remember is that others provided for them and they will go back again and again for more.

    1. @ Buck

      “Anyone with any sense could see this coming back in January.’ Yes, for those of us who know what we’re looking at and understand full well what can happen, it was pretty clear back in January where this might be going. For those operating under the “normalcy bias”, sadly, the major portion of the population, it took a lot longer than that for them to pay attention.

  7. All very true, but unfortunately leaves out The Holy Trinity and legions of angels and saints, because no one can make it without Them. They are first and foremost to anything positive happening and changing.

  8. Those who want an easy life never grow up to the fact that somebody is doing the work to support their life style. I’ve seen many comments even on this site crying out for the gubermint to do something. Self reliance is not saying you don’t need others ~ it’s really being dependent of our public “servants”welfare system.
    Those “swamp” creatures have already forfeited their freedoms for a position of illusionary security and the Babel builders up the chain are drooling over the expedience of administering the hungry masses of fear filled dependents..
    There is a huge Spiritual battle taking place and those who fear death are the ultimate losers of life and freedom.
    2 Timothy 1:7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and a sound mind.

  9. I think all of you are right. Like Anderson, I wouldn’t go out and fly a flag or wear a t-shirt. I’m afraid modern media has painted preppers as nuts. But we’ll win our battles one at a time. There are a lot of people out there looking at empty shelves and now their brains are starting to ask questions. We may be able to bring people over to this novel way of thinking during the next few months. Of course, that assumes the chain of food and supplies and ammunition can correct itself over the next six months. It might be too late for them to catch up. I believe if we keep our eyes and ears open, we can shepherd people along.

    1. @ Piperinva

      That’s ok; I don’t think you need to wear a prepper t-shirt or fly the prepper flag. I’m not totally serious about our need to do that! 😉 But taking advantage of what has happened to try to get people’s attention right now is important I think. And if we can use the situation to show people WHY we do as we do and refute the portrayal of us by the media as nuts, we will hopefully turn more people into preppers.

  10. Live an engaged , positive, productive life but leave your prepping and social/cultural attitudes quiet! Go ninja, go grey man. Trust few, if anyone at all, with your “private” pursuits. If there is anything good about single life in a very rural area, is that there are very few close enough emotionally or physically to be tempted to share your lifestyle with. That will turn out to be a positive.

  11. Hi Ani. Many of us think like you and share your frustration. On the positive side I have seen my brother turn from not being a prepper at all to full bore prepper.
    My oldest son was semi serious to very serious now. My neighbors are slowly coming on board but too slow for me of course. Thank God this is a relatively slow situation compared to EMP or whatever would cause a grid down to occur.

    I will use this opportunity to help my neighbors get more serious. Their good hard working people. Because there is one thing for sure, they will come for a hand out and I will be charitable. Until as JWR says “until it hurts”. Then it will be sad and ugly.

    1. @ WV Joe

      This is good to hear. I think that the pandemic could be a wake-up call for some. And if we are there for them to then show them how it is done, this will be a big benefit for all of us the next time something happens.

  12. “Gman” pretty well nailed it. I have never considered us being “preppers”, just learning to live on less. Many think it is “too much work”. The rougher days are ahead of us, common sense will tell you that. I have tried to tell some relatives to get ready for that. The response I get is, “we will always be able to go to the grocery store”. I quit encouraging them. Frankly, I do not think many of us who live close to the dirt are going to survive the hoards that will inevitably come. The only real protection will come from God alone. Best to “prep” for an encounter with Him. My 2 cents. Make no mistake though, I will do everything I can to protect my family first, then the family across the road.

    1. But my point is that we have to, imho, realize that there are too few of “us” and too many of “them” to survive if things get that bad. Believing that we will just be able to outgun the hordes is fool-hardy for many of us. So we will all be better off if we can help convert more of “them” to a prepper outlook than if we just hunker down and pull in the anchor. And I don’t know about you, but I suspect there are many of us who will be unable to refuse to help our extended family members, friends and neighbors if they ask for help. Like really, would you tell your mother/brother/best friend/next door neighbor that you have no food either?

      1. There are too few of us and too many or them. But always remember what Jack Reacher said. There’s the leader, a couple “wing men” but the rest invariably will run away. Fear is the motivator. We need to be willing to fight for our lives – because that’s exactly what is at stake here – and if it gets that bad.

        As for helping friends and family. It is our christian obligation to help them. But, and this is the big BUT, I have been trying to help them, to educate them for years. They have sat by and done nothing, seeing the same news reports and events that I have. Now, when things get a little tight, they expect that I will assume the role of caretaker, and feed and babysit them through it. We talk a lot of our christian obligation for charity, and our obligation to help those in need, but I also remember that, “The Lord helps those, who help themselves.” There are many that are in true “need” out there, and there are many lazy, self-centered, self-entitled people out there.

      2. “So we will all be better off if we can help convert more of “them” to a prepper outlook…”

        Two points to remember when trying to convert “them” Ani:

        1. As informed preppers trying to convert the unaware, we often make the mistake of instinctively jumping to the most dramatic examples of collapse that we can think of. This is like trying to teach a child mathematics by skipping the addition and subtraction and jumping straight to quantum physics. Appeal to them in small steps. Start with financial planning and healthy eating. If they are accepting of that, then progress to step 2. Jumping straight to tales of the Rothschild banking cabal and their plan for global domination through currency debasement is just going to freak them out and immediately shut down their willingness to listen. If you can’t get to step 2, you’re spinning your wheels. You can’t save everyone.

        2. Don’t be “Uncle Ralph”. Uncle Ralph is that family member that comes over for Thanksgiving, 60lbs overweight and hasn’t exercised since he was in the Army 40 years ago but wants to give everyone health and fitness advice. Uncle Ralph also lives in a van down by the river but could fix the global financial and economic system before supper time next Wednesday if they would only ask his advice. Set the example of the lifestyle you want them to follow. People are more willing to listen and change if they can see the results of practicing what you preach. Faith, Fitness, Financial–show them that foundation and they will want to help build the house.

      3. One of the many issues facing the community is the stories we Tell ourselves.

        Most people think they are king prepper and will be able to live out the situations passing out charity while they or thier small group band together and not just survive but thrive.

        In short they are as sold on thier stories as the masses of unprepared are with thier story.

        The truth is somewhere in between.

        Yes people are going to try to “gank” your stuff.
        Yes people will try to help you.

        One underlying unabashed truth is it will all depend on determination skill and luck.

        It is good to have friends and be part of a community.
        It is good to have faith.

        It’s best to be in the best position you can. The one where you are content safe stocked and producing enough to get by.

        There is a reason that civilization was created and has become the default human condition world wide.

  13. “… Prepper” shows online which I’d thought was going to be about permaculture and its role in preparedness, but discovered that the preppers featured were growing toxic plants in their forest garden, drying them, grinding them up and placing the powdered toxic herbs in their spice rack to use in food for any “unwelcome” guests …” From the ~~>good posted article.
    **************
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    GGHD = Someday >everyone will stand before God on Judgement Day. +Only God knows the truth, and the future with certainty.
    **************
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    From the Survivalblog >Rawlesian Survivalist Philosophy. (>Worth reading in its entirety at the heading links.) =

    “Civilization is Just a Thin Veneer. In the absence of law and order, men quickly revert to savagery. As was illustrated by the rioting and looting that accompanied disasters in the past three decades, the transition from tranquility to absolute barbarism can occur overnight.” (Rawles)

    “Charity is a Moral Imperative. As a Christian, I feel morally obligated to assist others that are less fortunate. Following the Old Testament laws of Tzedakah (charity and tithing), I believe that my responsibility begins with my immediate family and expands in successive rings to supporting my immediate neighborhood and church, to my community, and beyond, as resources allow. In short, my philosophy is to “give until it hurts” in times of disaster.” (Rawles)

    [And from the resource heading.]

    “I strongly encourage charitable giving both the present day and post-TEOTWAWKI. It is important to keep far more storage food on hand than you expect to consume. If all that you have is the bare minimum to supply your own family or retreat group, you won’t be in any position to dispense charity.” (Rawles)

    [You can’t give away what you don’t have …. Yes, I know politicians can give away somebody else’s money. = GGHD]

    “If the situation warrants it, give at arm’s length. I describe one way to do this in my novel “Patriots”. It may sound almost absurd, but you may need to dispense charity by passing it over concertina wire or even while holding the beneficiaries at gunpoint at a safe distance. If times are bad enough, they’ll understand your caution.” (Rawles)
    **********
    **********

    Yes, I’m just posting Rawles, = ‘Because, why should GGHD try to reinvent the wheel.’ The Wuhan Flu was a good test-run for preppers.

    There was panic throughout the >world; NOT just the USA.
    Communist China >brutally locked down Wuhan China. According to the reports: homes were nailed shut on living people; the living were placed in body bags. … +Our FAKE NEWS MEDIA reports Communist China propaganda as factual information. … (Our Fake News says, ‘China knows how to deal with problems better than Orange Man.’)

    Many people think the Wuhan Coronavirus leaked from a Communist China Biological >Weapons Laboratory.
    Today is the day to prepare. SurvivalBlog advertisers sell quality products.

  14. I feel sorry that the author lives in such fear. Life is a risk. Everyone has a different level of acceptable risk.
    No-one is immune to the Chinese virus. Every one will most likely contract it. Worrying whether you will be the <1% that will require extensive hospitalization isn't really rational. If you are susceptible to the virus, It's a matter of when, not if.

    1. @deanq

      Honestly, I have no clue what you are talking about. Are you replying to my article? I didn’t say a word about “Worrying whether you will be the <1% that will require extensive hospitalization isn't really rational". Maybe you read this somewhere else and meant to respond to it? I'm not at all worried about being in the 1% nor requiring extensive hospitalization. I wrote about the need to help turn others into preppers.

    2. deanq,

      That was a rather off-base reply, for sure.

      No, it is not “a matter of when, not if.” That is complete and utter nonsense. You have no way to know that right now.

      The simple fact is that, while there is no absolute certainty about the Wuhan Virus, vaccines have been developed for all sorts of diseases, so there’s no reason to be flippant about efforts to avoid getting infected now.

      I can remember getting measles, mumps, chicken pox, and scarlet fever when I was a kid. There was no vaccine for any of them. I am still alive and kickin’.

      Either my immune system or the advent of flu vaccine had its effects on me. If I have ever had the flu, it was so long ago that I don’t remember it. I’ll try my best to avoid the Wuhan Virus now and hope that by sometime in 2021 that a vaccine is developed.

  15. Hi Ani, great article. When family members can’t see the obvious, we can at least point them in the right direction and hope that some of it sinks in some day.

    Back on January 6th I sent an email to all my siblings and children. That was the day a big oil refinery had been bombed and was possibly going to disrupt oil supplies. And lot of sabre rattling was also going on in Washington. In my email, I reminded everyone that in Grandpa’s history, he talked about how hard it was to get even basic items during WW II like tires for their car, coffee, sugar, and they had ration coupons for many things. I suggested they read “The Fourth Turning” and ended by saying that life wouldn’t go on forever like it always has, so it doesn’t hurt to do a little stocking up, especially when we hardly make anything in this country any more. I got zero replies back which was a polite way of telling me I was crazy, of course. I wondered what they were thinking 8 weeks later when they were standing in line for TP.

    I did get one belated reply to my January email. The gist of it was that they didn’t want to live a life of fear, worrying about the future all the time. I thought that was an interesting take on things. I replied back that just the opposite was true. When your cupboards are full, you have fewer worries in these days of just-in-time supply lines. I asked in my email how much fun can it be visiting the TP aisle at Walmart? Since the bank is paying me zero interest on my checking account and since prices almost always go up, wouldn’t it be a huge savings of both time and money to buy all my non-perishables just once a year? So that’s what I do. At the end of January when the farm store has its clearance sale on winter clothing I head to the Big City. Afterward, I hit Walmart and buy all my TP, toiletries, toothbrushes, vitamins, dish and laundry soap, cleaning supplies, garbage bags, etc. I purposely don’t do an inventory before I leave home. That ensures I am slowly building more than a year’s supply of everything. Buying all of this stuff just once a year and storing it in my closet is way better than having money in the bank.

    If we can get our family members to see the basic sense of this kind of philosophy, perhaps it will get them thinking on the road to a broader prepping mindset with food, clothing, and rocket launchers. 🙂

    P.S. At the same festival where I bought my diamond hoe there was a gal there selling goat milk soap in 20 different scents for 75¢ a bar. And people were only buying 2-3 bars. What?! You can’t buy Zest for that much and goat milk soap is way better stuff. It was just hard to grasp people’s lack of “stocking up” mentality, even when the deal of the century is staring them in the face.

    1. This method of supply must fit your way of life/circumstance of Living.

      Never expect another Person has no reason to act different to oneself.

      I would buy a few pieces of the Soap to test them and if they work for me, i would buy a lot more(if i ´dn´t a box full of Soap at home).

      1. ThoDan, St. Funogas scored a good buy for soap, that would fit many circumstances.

        Dictionary Website: “Cleanliness is next to godliness. ~Being clean is a sign of spiritual purity or goodness, as in Don’t forget to wash your ears—cleanliness is next to godliness. This phrase was first recorded in a sermon by John Wesley in 1778, but the idea is ancient, found in Babylonian and Hebrew religious tracts. It is still invoked, often as an admonition to wash or clean up.”

        1. With the recent Wuhan Flu crisis, the importance of personal cleanliness is being relearned by many people. It’s in the news today; New York City is finally starting to thoroughly clean the insides of the Subway cars.

        2. The bars of soap can be used to clean-up around the house. From oil stains on the driveway to people and clothing; floors, dishes, cabinets and pets.
        ….. …. In a pinch, soap and water can be used to clean guns; new guns are plastic nitrite coated or other material, and/maybe stainless steel. [Yes we all know to dry guns off completely; even stainless steel guns.]

        3. We are in the midst of a supply chain crisis of needed items, here and around the world. More than one person was caught without a sufficient stock of needed Toilet Paper. An extra bar of soap in the shower can help clean up that problem.

        4. This must be nice soap, that would work well as a shaving lather too. +Commercial detergents usually have brighteners and whiteners in them. The Goat Milk soap might work to wash hunting clothes right now.

        5. SurvivalBlog recommends the ‘grey man’ approach to things. The bars of soap can be stored in a sock drawer until usage. A man traveling into the city would smell like a city-man, rather than hiking prepper feet.
        …. … Soaps and such are scented to appeal to a woman’s nose. A husband would please his better-half with soap in the sock drawer.
        …. … Even soaps designed for men are actually made to appeal to women. A real man’s soap would smell like Hoppe’s 9.

        1. A real man’s soap would smell like Hoppes #9…. True

          Shortly I will be listing on this site my man’s line of soap in assorted scents

          Bacon
          Pie
          Hoppes #9
          Old Spice
          WD40
          And the ever popular smoked BBQ.

          Mini bar samplers available for purchase.

          It’s a great gift for guys. Pair very well with our M.S.M.W. (moon shine mouth wash) … The perfect gift for dads and grads.

        2. @GGHD

          if If it didn´t fit the way of Living of a Person, it doesn´t make sense None the less.
          e.g. you expect to relocate every few months or so..

          and btw my box of Soap wouldn´t fit in a drawer

          1. ThoDan, it’s smart to have that big box of Soap. … Convenient soap has no substitute for usage. Plant ‘soap plants’ are not readily available and/or as pleasant to use; neither is homemade ‘pioneer soap’ made at home.
            Soap is needed by people, ‘Cleanliness is next to Godliness.’

        3. We have this Southern phrase called “poor with soap”. This is what my family was… We were poor, but we had important things like soap, so we were always able to keep both ourselves and our modest surroundings tidy and clean. Being dirty is true poverty of spirit, IMO. Nothing depresses the mind and heart, and places bodily health at risk, like filth.

          Soap is such an important prep, and one of the simple joys in life! I have all sorts of soaps in my preps. This weekend I plan to remove all the screens from the windows, then scrub them with soap and water before putting them back in the windows to allow the fresh spring air to blow through the house. Thanks goodness for soap!!

    2. @ St Funogas

      Exactly. I’m not prepping from a place of fear. I honestly feel that knowing that I have food, a way to heat the house in winter if there’s no power, staying out of debt, etc means that I’m less likely to be impacted by some of what may befall us. And yes, this is what we need to convey to others.

    3. You’re thinking too much like a country person. Different living situations require different approaches.

      Consider: If you live in a 400 sq ft studio apartment that may not even have a full kitchen, where are you going to store a year’s worth of anything? You’re going to carry a year’s worth of TP on the subway? Then carry it up 8 flights of stairs? Keep said stuff in a storage unit that costs hundreds of dollars a month, where storing it ends up costing more than the items themselves?

      Long story short, there is a reason that city people do things that seem nonsensical to us, and vice versa.

      1. I live in a NYC walk-up.

        I kept myself prepared.

        I dragged my supplies upstairs via bus and subway.

        I have canned and water bathed on an induction plug in range in an apartment less than 500 square feet

        500 square foot is big in NYC

        I also maintain my tools for carpentry in said apartment
        12 inch sliding DeWalt miter Bosch ½ inch router skillsaw 300′ ¼ inch air hose compressor (4 gallon twinstack) framing nailer finish nailer finish stapler ¼inch router 8 foot straight edge 6 foot level 4 foot level plus the rest of my gear including fall harness anchor points lanyards etc.

        And a bike (dolomite fat tire) bed 32 inch tv 17 inch laptop and a bed.

        And a 30 gallon fish tank.

        It’s not about being able to its about choosing to.
        And btw I move on average every year.

          1. @ Vegas

            So if you offered the city person living in a 400 sq ft apt all of the gold bars they could have if they managed to fit them inside their apartment, do you think they’d say “thanks, but my place is really too small to store anything”?

    4. St. Funogas!
      From your post: “When your cupboards are full, you have fewer worries in these days of just-in-time supply lines. I asked in my email how much fun can it be visiting the TP aisle at Walmart? Since the bank is paying me zero interest on my checking account and since prices almost always go up, wouldn’t it be a huge savings of both time and money to buy all my non-perishables just once a year?”

      Excellent examples that give people new ways of thinking about the benefits of preparedness!

  16. I grew up in Utah in the 1960s.
    I was not raised LDS and I am still not LDS but I have tremendous respect for their sense of community. I saw all of my friends family pantries. My decision to prepare was not genetic.

    Now for my opinions. Government optimism needs to be seen as another chance to prepare. The free money is not getting to the masses. The re-opening of the economy is a false flag. The stock market is a red herring.

    Most of us do not have our futures invested in equities.
    Most of us are invested in the Word of God.

    I believe that 6 to 8 months from now a mental health crisis will smack the world. Suicide, substance abuse, and crime will spike. We are starting to see it now.
    Those in leadership positions have failed. We can blame the MSM but they are the only one we have and they are not sitting in a duly elected position of authority. Their influence is what we say it is.

    I often think back to this Admiral Rickover quote defining responsibility.
    “Responsibility is a unique concept…
    You may share it with others, but your portion is not diminished.
    You may delegate it, but it is still with you…
    If responsibility is rightfully yours, no evasion, or ignorance or passing the blame can shift the burden to someone else. Unless you can point your finger at the man who is responsible when something goes wrong, then you never had anyone responsible.”

    Stay gray. God bless.

    1. From your post: “I believe that 6 to 8 months from now a mental health crisis will smack the world.”

      This is a very real risk. In the unfolding, the consequences are likely to cascade into every aspect of life.

      Remain steady. Be safe. Stay well everyone!

    2. “I believe that 6 to 8 months from now a mental health crisis will smack the world. Suicide, substance abuse, and crime will spike. We are starting to see it now.”

      No, they,the suicides and other deaths, will be listed as CoVID-19 deaths. This is exactly what is happening in Oakland and Macomb counties here is Michigan. All folks who die are being tested for CoronaVirus. If they test positive their deaths are listed as CoVID-19 deaths. I’m sure there are other counties here that are doing the same thing. This is happening all over the country. They are following the directives of the CDC.

      CoVID-19 has been a bust for the globalist agenda. Not enough people have died. Not enough people have even gotten sick. There has been something over 2 million who have tested positive for CoVID-19, globally. Globally, there have been 1 BILLION people who have gotten the flu. Globally there has been roughly 234,000 who have died from CoVID-19. Globally (I’m finding conflicting numbers on this one) there has been 650,000 plus who have died from the flu. Many of those CoVID-19 deaths are from the seasonal flu. All of the deaths are actually from the respiratory problems that is caused by the flu or CoronaVirus. Roughly 20% of all cases of the flu are caused by a CoronaVirus. Roughly 20% of all colds are caused by a CoronaVirus.

      Now a little info from Coronavirus Truths. https://coronavirustruths.godaddysites.com/

      TRUTH: The media will continue to fight reopening of this country by stating “experts” predict a spike in deaths if we do so. We would assume those are the same experts who initially predicted 2.2 million US deaths, revised to 200,000, then 100,000, then 60,000, then ordered testing all US deaths just in case they had coronavirus because we weren’t on pace for even 30,000 prior to that change in policy.

      TRUTH: COVID-19 has been treated like a world-ender; it’s not even remotely close. As mentioned earlier, it has infected just over 2 million people in the world. Not killed 2 million people. Actually, not even made 2 million sick. Just infected. So it is 76 million short of infecting 1% of the world’s population. It is 998 million short of infecting as many as influenza has this year, the vast majority of which are sicker than the average coronavirus patient. The world has never shut down for any disease before. And it chose this one to do so?

      My Governor, Gretchen Whitmer, is calling the push to restrict her emergency powers a political move. She is relishing her newfound dictatorship. Everything about CoVID-19 is political, everything. The change in the cause of deaths is political. The severe restrictions on our rights are political. Everything about this fiasco is about power and the politics of exercising that power.

      1. Charles K.
        We are all entitled to our opinions, thank you for sharing yours.

        I agree that many in duly elected leadship positions have used this virus crisis to push forward political agendas. The ambiguity and lack of decisive leaders has caused a lot of confusion.
        I do not agree that “everything” about Covid19 is political. As I have posted before,
        the Chinese welded the gates shut on Wuhan, built a fully functioning hospital in 10 days, and shut down their economy because this bug got out and started to eat. Unlike most of us, the Chinese worship money so when I connect these dots I cannot help but believe they are covering up the facts. Covid19 is not an illusion.

        Covid19 has been compared to pneumonia. Science is finding that Covid19 is more like a blood infection with possible effects on the brain stem.
        We do not know what we do not know…yet. Thank God for brilliant scientists, doctors and nurses.
        We all know the seasonal flu is bad. Family members can be bedside for their family members when their family members pass. Not so with this sickness. We are still learning.

        I may not have been clear. I believe that the mental health crisis will manifest due to the economic mess created by our leadership not getting out in front.
        Like you implied, there will be politicians who will blame the economic mess and future deaths on Covid19.
        The reality is we must have been teetering on a knife edge for the economy to react the way it has. The majority of Americans live paycheck to paycheck working in service industry jobs. That is the edge of the knife and I have been there too.

        Entrepreneurs in our area are getting pretty creative to stay open despite government interference. Throwing trillions at the wall isn’t going to fix this. American ingenuity and hard work will bring us back.

        I think we are somewhere in between the end of the world and a political conspiracy.
        We are fully capable of pulling through this but our leaders need to either lead or get out if the way. Your Governor really likes the TV cameras. Most of us can see her ambition from the freeway.

        Like Ani discussed when she started this article. We can hope for many more people to wake up and prepare for future disruptions.
        Hang in there. God Bless.

      2. The truth is both simple and complicated. Life and truth are often this way.

        Politics, politicians, and political bureaucrats are much more dangerous than most people imagine — although perhaps we are seeing an awakening in this regard. No argument on this point. None whatsoever. I really do agree with you.

        However… This reality (the clear and present danger of everything political) does not diminish the danger of SARS-COV-2 and COVID-19.

        COVID-19 is deadly. Please do not fool yourselves. The price you pay for a failure to recognize this may be very high, and the price your actions force upon someone else may be as high or higher.

        Pause for a moment or two, and let that really sink in. The price you pay, or cause someone else to pay, may be life itself.

        It’s fair to say that that death count is not going to be entirely accurate. Many who were sick in life were never tested, and many have died who were never tested after their deaths. How many were not counted? We will probably never know.

        As to whether or not deaths are over counted? I would have to challenge this point. The Raconteur Report posted quite an animated commentary on this very question as it relates to co-morbidity, and many excellent points are made. If you can look past the use of bad language, this writer does have a lot to share. I believe the assessment is correct.

        WARNING regarding the link that follows with regard to language: https://raconteurreport.blogspot.com/2020/04/co-morbidity.html

        Our objective should be to navigate the narrow channel through the political danger, the economic challenges, and a disease — the unleashing of which — was, in my view, an act of war.

        There are solutions. They’re not easy, and there isn’t a “one size fits all” approach. …but there are solutions. Every one of these begins with truly valuing life — our own lives AND the lives of others.

        1. Thank you for the link to the blog. I read it. It makes sense. That being said, it kind of makes my point. No one dies of just CoVID-19. There is always something more. CoVID-19 and SARS-CoV-2 are real and they are causing problems, and yes it is deadly to a relatively small minority of those who get it. Again, that being said; with all the “comorbidities” in the US and in the global population, we should be seeing a roughly 30% death toll from those who get infected by CoVID-19. That is just not happening.

          We are being lied to by everybody involved. The Chinese government kept things to themselves, in other words, they lied to the world. The WHO, working with the Chinese government, kept things to themselves, in other words, they lied to the world. In America, the CDC and the NIH have been lying to us from day one. Dr. Fauci has been lying, his story keeps changing. He is, by his actions, an enemy of the truth. He also stands to gain, in a massive way, financially from his association with Bill Gates and the Gates agenda of mass, forced vaccination. Dr. Birx has the same problem as Fauci, but I’ve noticed she has been back tracking on some of her more egregious falsehoods. I guess she still wants to maintain at least some of her credibility. So truth is the first casualty of CoVID-19.

          Finally, we have to look at the countries and the US states that did not lock down their economies.

          Sweden is a prime example of the countries that did not lock down. As a percentage of their population, they have had no more cases of CoVID-19 than we have. As for those who have died, it is no worse than the US or any other country that has locked down, and their economy is fairing far better than those countries that did lock down.

          South Dakota is a prime example of a state that did not lock down. As a percentage of their population, they have had no more cases of CoVID-19 than any other US state (New York is and outlier mostly because of New York City). As for those who have died, it is no worse than any other US state and their economy is fairing far better than the states that did lock down.

  17. As I said to my wife when this whole thing started; “It’s not the disease that’s going to kill us – it’s the stupidity of people in general that will do us in.”

    Is this the end? Is it what we’ve been prepping for? It’s still to early to tell, as far as I’m concerned. I know that Covid-19 isn’t ebola or the bubonic plague, and it isn’t going to wipe us out. But what we have done to ourselves may wind up being our undoing. Shutting down the entire country may have seemed like a good idea at the time, but the truth is that the only thing keeping our society together was that forward momentum. We keep seeing “fake news” from all sources, reporting on the stock market, and how high it is, how we’re going to be opening up construction again, how we’re going to do a phased start-up – It just doesn’t work that way. Either it all has to start – or none of it will. I work construction, and I know that the sight doesn’t run without delivery drivers, cooks, cleaners. Heck, try having a site where the porta-potties aren’t emptied for a few days. Just the same as the military. The big stuff doesn’t happen without the support troops.

    Latest report I saw talked about 12% – 16% of mortgages being in default by the end of May. 53% of the country lives paycheck to paycheck, and can’t afford to take a $400 hit to their budgets. Possibly as high as 20% unemployment. These are the things I look at, and the things that will be with us a long time after Covid-19. How long until we see our first food riot? How long until the government simply can’t print enough money to keep up? Inflation? Interest rates skyrocketing? These are the things that keep me up at night – simply because I don’t know. But it makes me wonder if we haven’t toppled that first domino. And I guess that’s why I prep – to take a little uncertainty out of the equation.

    Everybody just wants everything to go back to normal. And I have to admit in many ways so do I. Normal is easy. Maybe I’ve just gotten old and lazy, but the “easy” life is nice. A world-wide depression is hard work.

    But at the same time I really don’t want things to go back to normal, because “normal” was broken. It was corrupt and unsustainable in the long run. It was a legal system where the victims were punished and the guilty were pampered. It was unions demanding more and more for less and less production. It was small self-interest groups dictating to the majority what we had to do, or had to accept as mainstream. To quote another writer, from another time. (Bill Johnstone) “The rich getting richer, and the poor contemplating armed rebellion”

    My apologies if I wandered off topic here. I guess I just needed to vent a little. Sometimes it’s hard to be a “one-eyed man in the land of the blind.”

    1. You can see that looting has already started in NYC. Companies are defrauding the loan programs with scams. People are panicking over little things. Companies are using this virus escapade as an excuse to lay off and abuse employees.

      Time for us to stay faithful to God and hold the moral high ground. So many people are down/depressed out there. I regularly send out jokes/funny songs/poems and uplifting messages to family and a group of other Christians. Now is the time to let your Christian light shine and be a blessing to others. Of course, I do prep and look out for my own.

      1. NYC is doing fine. Minor interruptions. Mostly life as usual minus the work. Most new Yorkers are lazy and incompetent and enjoying their staycation.

        Honestly it’s only been two rent cycles and most got unemployment with Covid plus on it making more than at work.

        If things go too much longer it will get bad. But right now NYC is solid.

  18. There are too few of us and too many or them. But always remember what Jack Reacher said. There’s the leader, a couple “wing men” but the rest invariably will run away. Fear is the motivator. We need to be willing to fight for our lives – because that’s exactly what is at stake here – and if it gets that bad.

    As for helping friends and family. It is our christian obligation to help them. But, and this is the big BUT, I have been trying to help them, to educate them for years. They have sat by and done nothing, seeing the same news reports and events that I have. Now, when things get a little tight, they expect that I will assume the role of caretaker, and feed and babysit them through it. We talk a lot of our christian obligation for charity, and our obligation to help those in need, but I also remember that, “The Lord helps those, who help themselves.” There are many that are in true “need” out there, and there are many lazy, self-centered, self-entitled people out there.

    1. @ The Lone Canadian

      I understand your frustration completely. Friends in another state just went through a 6 day power outage due to a snowstorm. They had no way to heat the house(her elderly parents huddled under the covers). They had no way to cook(electric stoves). All the food in the fridge/freezer went bad. They honestly never considered this could happen I guess; they live in a small city. Had it been the depths of winter it could have been even worse. After it was over and their power was restored I gently said that if she wanted to brainstorm about what measures they could take so the NEXT time this happened they’d be in better shape I’d be happy to do so. Crickets…….. Power is back on, all is good. For now.

      It’s hard. All we can do is try.

  19. Ani! An excellent article, so much to consider, and about which to converse in a forum like the SB. In describing your own family members, you could easily have described a number of ours.

    Often in life, and in my experience, conflicts exist alongside (or in between) competing truths. In this case…

    1) We are only as strong as our weakest link, and…

    2) Too public an advertisement about who preppers are, where they are, and what they have, places everyone at much greater risk (and almost certainly too much risk).

    So then… How do we foster a culture of preparedness in such a way that our numbers increase as a percentage of the total population?

    This is a very interesting question, and an important one.

    Some people dip their toes into preparedness waters, but over time, and absent an acute emergency, fade back into the lives they knew before…

    Some people engage the idea of prepared living, but do so in the time of an acute emergency, have few or no resources with which to establish a solid foundation, and give up…

    Some people live in a chronic state of denial or are drowning in a sea of misinformation, and have no capacity to engage real risk assessment…

    There are at least a few who are ready to receive information and ideas about why preparedness is important, and how to begin their own preparedness journeys. Time may be short, but every minute God has given us is a gift. There may be people who are not yet prepared, but are ready to become so. Our best efforts may be to focus on this group, no matter their numbers (great or few).

    I am also reminded of the parable of the Sower, the secrets of the Kingdom of Heaven, and the prophecy of Isaiah.

    Remain steady. Be safe. Stay well everyone!

    1. @ T of A

      Yes. I’m hoping that the pandemic and fallout from it will present enough of a wake-up call to some that they will be more open to preparedness. That preppers won’t just be perceived as kooks(or selfish hoarders). And any that get convinced to join us will mean fewer people who are less prepared in the future.

  20. One result of this crisis will be some level of awakening. As I watched this progress I saw a huge supply of TP at my local Walmart slowly deplete and then suddenly one day disappear. Then I saw this slow but then sudden process happen with food. Everyone saw it and for those who didn’t go to the store they saw it on TV. Now of course not everyone will “awaken” and become modest preppers in the future but a lot of people will. That is a good thing. For a lot of legitimate reasons our food and TP supply and distribution system cannot and will not ever become so large that it can keep the shelves full in a panic buying event. BUT, with 10% or 20% more people on board with some increased level of prepping that demand can be flattened and the numbers of people negatively affected can be lowered. So when all is said and done and life returns to normal there will be at least some good that comes of this.

  21. Over the years, I’ve spoken to my wife & our adult children & their spouses/significant other. At times they thought I was crazy/wierd. Normalcy bias. In one case, an extended family member told me that he couldn’t survive the end of the world b/c of his health problems, but when we visited them a few years ago, I noticed that they had a lot of food in their home, & they told me they have a water filter. I received very little positive feedback on the idea of prepping. But when the news of coronavirus hit in March, my spouse told me that I was “wise” to prep, which lifted my spirits.
    Despite this, I agree with JWR & GGHD that charity is a moral imperative. I believe that we Jesus-followers are to love our neighbors & be good Samaritans, although I’m open & flexible as to how different people want to do that.

    1. @ Chris

      Yes, I too come from a tradition that emphasizes charity(tzedukah). So now when I shop for any groceries, I also buy a couple of bags of the food the food shelf is asking for and deliver it to them. Many people are in need. But I also believe that old “give a man a fish and he eats for a meal, teach a man to fish and he eats for a lifetime” adage. So while there are some that due to disability, lack of intellect etc will be unable to prep no matter what, I do believe that there are many we can reach and educate. This will hopefully reduce the numbers with their hands held out needing charity during the next disaster.

  22. Very interesting take. I came from a family that just doesn’t worry. They are all very hard working and giving folks who sincerely live their Christian lives. I never even thought about having a lot of reserves. Then I got married. We had 2 kids with one on the way and my husband seriously hurt his back. We scraped by. Yes, we ate but there wasn’t much variety and there was a lot of stress. After we came through this we determined that we would always have reserves and not repeat this unpleasant experience. Then as our family grew, we found that if you stock up on sales ,etc. You can live much better than if you just buy what you need when you want it. This has been a learning experience. Unfortunately, not everyone learns this. We have friends that are always in a feast or famine situation. All we can do is share the wisdom wisdom we’ve learned and hope others will listen and act. Now is a good time to share, but some will just ignore it. So, ultimately, we are responsible for our actions. I wouldn’t stress about others. Just do what is right and trust God. This isn’t our eternal home. It’s temporary. What we do now can make our lives easier or harder, but only God knows how the future will play out. If you’re a believer, you can trust in Him giving you wisdom for what is to come.

  23. Thank you for a lovely article Ani! You write so well. My mom is the same, but as it turned out, she ended up staying with long time friends who have been secret preppers for decades. lol. I know she’s safe and secure.

    I think I understand your point of view. Short of hoisting the black flag, I’ve been developing a blog (still uncertain if I will publish and maintain it). I’ve gone gray for the most part and not sure I want to be any other. No one in the community has any idea as to the level of my preps, only my intimate family members. My home is the “safe house”. But, I do feel that sense of wanting to teach, encourage others.

    The tact I took with my own family was to “just do it” and when I give gifts they’re of the practical genre. Funny how the pandemic (or plandemic depending upon your point of view) got the attention of my offspring. Even though I’ve been preachin’ it for almost 2 decades, what got their attention was empty store shelves and lockdown.

    I continue to stock up. God bless you Ani!

  24. Thank you for the thought provoking article.

    One undeniable fact to remember is that the severe national overreaction has proven to be far more destructive and hazardous to public health than the Chinese bio weapon itself. Why? For starters- the general public is completely unprepared and prefers fear over reason. Also- governments at all levels have once again proven how dangerously incompetent and incapable they are at performing their most basic and mandated functions. Every government model for this plandemic has been 100% wrong- this should alarm everyone, but its not. The purveyors of this fear campaign should be forced out of power and publicly shamed. Instead, the opposite appears to be happening. Absolute government failure if being rewarded with more power, control, and money in the hands of the criminals responsible for our current situation. GOVERNMENT WILL NOT SAVE YOU!

    Personally, this is the message my wife and I are conveying to friends and family. Some are receptive, some prefer living in fear and denial. A month or so when the plandemic panic kicked into high gear, we identified all of the immediate family that could potentially come knocking if things got bad. With nearly 40 extra mouths to feed, we realized our long term stores would disappear quickly. We began lobbying siblings and others to start stocking up NOW. Some were more receptive than others, generally speaking all of our family members are more prepared now. This is a true silver lining.

  25. Ani, you seem to have a good heart, but your idea concerning proselytizing others is a recipe for ruin for most.

    Using the “Doomsday Preppers” series as an example, I was puzzled why so many people who appeared there talked in detail about their preps and prepper secrets. After all, their proud display of racks of food, and their “secret rooms” filled with guns and ammunition was the kind of information that would not serve them well after a major disaster, particularly in small towns “where everybody knows everybody.” They made it clear to those who lived around them that they were the neighborhood supply depot for when things got “spicy.”

    Your approach can very well put you in the same predicament.

    The human condition doesn’t change much. The Normalcy Bias is pervasive. If we all lived in Kansas or Oklahoma, we would probably have a storm shelter because of the repeated examples each year of why we should. The farther from Tornado Alley one gets, while tornadoes are still possible, the more likely it becomes for people to say, “What are the real chances one will hit me?” As a result, they build houses without basements or storm shelters.

    This pandemic is a rather comfortable one. Cable TV, the internet, the lights, and the water supply are all working. Except for the financial burden some bear, “Life is good.”

    While some people who lived through the Depression never trusted the banks again, so far, at least, about the only thing that the average American will likely learn from the pandemic is that he needs to store more toilet paper and paper towels. While shortages of some items have occurred, few have been badly inconvenienced and there have been no reports of people starving. If Joe Average can’t find bread on a particular day, he can still literally “eat cake.”

    Ani, you are absolutely right that it would be best if everyone was prepared for an extended crisis. That ain’t gonna happen though. The best you can do is to prepare for yourself and then keep your preps secret.

    I have failed to take my own advice. Early on, I encouraged a neighbor down the street to get involved in preparedness efforts but was unsuccessful. Unfortunately, he passed away last year. Until a major catastrophe comes along, I won’t know whether his wife remembers what I have. While I certainly hope that she has enough to make it on her own, I have to hope that my personal breach of OPSEC doesn’t come back to haunt me if she talks to others and they begin to think of my home as the neighborhood mess hall.

    I expect that each of us would share with neighbors after a short term disaster like an earthquake. I also believe that it would be a serious mistake after what appears to be a long term disaster to hand out food and other stores–for which we expended blood, sweat, and tears and wisely set aside–to those who merely had the fortunate circumstance of living on our street, and who did little to prepare in advance for a calamity.

    It is clear that you have more of the milk of human kindness flowing through your veins than I do. I wish you well.

    1. @ Survivormann99

      It’s really hard and I debated writing this as I knew it would be controversial. I felt that I needed to say what I said and I hoped that some good could come out of it. I’m not personally advocating telling everyone what you’ve got stored up; I wouldn’t do that either. I would like to see an attempt though to change the public perception of preppers and to re-frame prepping as a civic duty and part of family responsibility. I feel we’ve got to take back the image of preppers as selfish survivalists huddled in their bunkers and not let the MSM portray us that way anymore.

      And I hope that this pandemic can be viewed as a trial run of sorts as yes, the electricity is still on, the water is still running and cable is still working.

    2. From your post: “This pandemic is a rather comfortable one. Cable TV, the internet, the lights, and the water supply are all working. Except for the financial burden some bear, “Life is good.””

      Excellent point. Well stated. There are many risks on the horizon, and any one of these could become our reality. What we are experiencing right now may be a practice run…

      For those who are struggling and suffering greatly, and for those who have lost loved ones to COVID-19, what is said here is not to minimize the impact this has had on your lives. It is only to say that as difficult as this is, there are many risks with potential for far more dire consequences, and even more severe suffering.

      Please continue to prepare.

      Remain steady. Be safe. Stay well everyone!

  26. The Cyprian Plague –250 to 262 AD — was imported by trade and ultimately led to the destruction of the Roman Empire– and to the widespread conversion of Europe to Christianity from Roman paganism. Believed to be Ebola it was named after St Cyprian who wrote during the plague:

    “This trial, that now the bowels, relaxed into a constant flux, discharge the bodily strength; that a fire originated in the marrow ferments into wounds of the fauces; that the intestines are shaken with a continual vomiting; that the eyes are on fire with the injected blood; that in some cases the feet or some parts of the limbs are taken off by the contagion of diseased putrefaction; that from the weakness arising by the maiming and loss of the body, either the gait is enfeebled, or the hearing is obstructed, or the sight darkened;—is profitable as a proof of faith.

    What a grandeur of spirit it is to struggle with all the powers of an unshaken mind against so many onsets of devastation and death! what sublimity, to stand erect amid the desolation of the human race, and not to lie prostrate with those who have no hope in God; but rather to rejoice, and to embrace the benefit of the occasion; that in thus bravely showing forth our faith, and by suffering endured, going forward to Christ by the narrow way that Christ trod, we may receive the reward of His life and faith according to His own judgment![7]”

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plague_of_Cyprian

    See also Kyle Harper’s “The Fate of Rome”

    Some academics disagree with Harper but I think he is probably right. The people of the Roman Empire were far more densely concentrated into cities than other nations — as shown by the massive aqueducts still remaining. That urbanism made the Empire far more vulnerable to a pandemic than were the Germans and Persians.

  27. I broach the subject of my preparedness over many conversations;

    “Holy cow Netflix keeps recommending doomsday preppers you ever seen” followed by full out mocking of the show (it’s great comedy kinda like the Bernstein bears this is what you should not do)

    Then if I sense any kindredness I talk about being a boyscout and living in California (gotta prepare for the big one)

    Then I drop it and wait …

    Then I talk about some of my preparedness (usually about food storage and moonshining or beer brewing some times pickles or homemade kraut)

    At which point I don’t speak again unless they talk to me about it.

  28. Les Feldick of “Through the Bible with Les Feldick[.org]” says: “It’ll only be one-tenth of one percent…that’ll ever get in! [Just 0.001 of all People; that is likely all!] The Way is narrow, the Book says. And it was no different back in Jesus’ day, for Him, either.” Sounds just like those we see who GET Prepping now. Not many seem to ever find the correct answer on this issue! And the same is true today happening in my own family, as yours in the article, unfortunately, on this needed Prepping issue, too. Are they Clueless? Maybe. But IDK if that gets quite at the root of their issue, accurately; it really seems to me to be of the total Selfishness etiology, to me – their refusing to Prep mainly because of just: “I don’t wanna!” Throwing rocks at those who are calling attention to their “selfish immaturity,” basically, then just comes because that’s how immature selfish people act, and usually in concert with THEIR like kind…today’s majority, the 0.999, looks like from my Prepped Perspective. So what do we do about it? Dig that hidden hole a little deeper, I guess. Ponder well what will come at us – because of these vastly different numbers, out there. Cast our Prep Pearls not before our family Swine, after some (already decided) points along the way. Stop worrying about the things we have no control over, and “worry” just how we are to handle this inevitable problem, once the bottom falls out & it hits our doorstep? Teams. Got to be in Teams, by then; something I haven’t accomplished yet, at all, really…sad to say. Won’t be any real Family in my own Team, either…other than my wife & maybe our grand kids. And if (the numb-skull) one of their parents shows up, we’ll all be at high risk then…oh boy! Nope. To Prep is to make some very real Enemies today, all very nearby, too. Ugh…

  29. Great article! I am a disaster preparedness educator and the first and primary lesson I teach is why and how to prepare for ANY disaster. I found that in March, shortly before our state when into lockdown, the requests for this training drastically increased. Unfortunately, all classes have been postponed for now. I can only hope that the interest will still be there when the opportunity for training becomes available again.
    And old saying about “you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink” is true. BUT YOU CAN FEED IT SALT! (This is create a thirsty horse and he will gladly drink the water that was st before him!)

    Stay vigilant.

  30. Reading the article, what came to my mind was that we are living in the days of Noah and that God had already judged the USA and found it guilty of breaking his commandments. For decades the USA has been declining in power, respect, and physical wealth due to this judgment. We will never return to our former glory days. Things will only continue to decline and those who have been ignorant of these coming hardships will not be saved by you or me. Those same people are also ignorant of the Bible and the prophecies inside.

    Our job is to warn others, only the Holy Spirit could move them to heed. Those who follow Christ and rely on His Bible can only continue to warn others of God’s coming Kingdom and judgments on Earth.

    Lastly, we must be prepared to lose our possessions, our freedom, and our lives. We must not stray from following God’s commandments no matter the cost, for it is He that matters, not this world.

      1. But Noah didn’t pull up the gangplank. The word says that the LORD did it!!! Gen 7:16
        And they that went in, went in male and female of all flesh, as God had commanded him: and the LORD shut him in.

  31. This article reminds me of my usual routine of getting on an airplane. As passengers are boarding, I take note of those who seem unaware of their actions and behavior impacting the boarding process. Perhaps they stand in the aisle, searching from something in their carryon before putting it in the overhead, oblivious to the line of passengers forming behind them. They then take their seat, only to find that they need some other item from their carryon, and get up and impede boarding again. Once agains seated, they proceed to talk loudly on their cell phone, play music without headphones, or try to get up to use the lavoratory before take off, never, ever realizing how their actions impact the other passengers. I identify this person, and make a wager with myself that this will be the person that can’t follow directions in the event of an emergency evacuation, and will imperil passengers by trying to gather his carryon from the bin and lug it out of the plane through the emergency exit and onto the slide. The current pandemic has identified the same people. Disregarding social distancing, failing to take action to prepare before the virus came to the US, compalaining that government hasn’t done enough, while they themselves haven’t done anything to help themselves. They imperil us all. We are all responsible for our own well being. But some people are just plain clueless.

  32. Ani, Dear, I don’t have any rocket launchers or land mines in place. You’ve a good heart, and it obviously is grounded in the Word of G*d. Teaching instead of cursing and slapping and ridiculing is a far more logical approach. All here by now realize you will reach some, but not all with help and teaching, and some will turn to rend you, because they deal in violence. And those in turn will have to be dealt with as necessary. If there were any absolutes besides G*d and His Word, we’d have found it by now. I like hearing from people like you because you’ve got solutions, not despair and anger. Keep on, and keep passing it on. Just so you know, I keep trying to help, to teach, to encourage, whomever I can.

    1. Thank you Sean. I just figure that most of us weren’t necessarily born to preppers ourselves; somehow we became aware of the need to prep and began to do so. And if we can each reach out as best as we are able to encourage others to do what we do and by understanding why(often normalcy bias) they haven’t yet done so, we can hopefully make progress. And if everyone we reach is able to reach at least one other person……….

  33. First time posting. Ani, your article described much of my experience since January 23. Have been following JWR since 2006 and have been prepping ever since. I, too, found most people i know unreceptive to the coming changes. I used the time from January 23 to March 11 to top off our freezers, do additonal ‘luxury’ preps like preserving citrus juices and peels, extra dehydrated veggies, extra eggs til the new chicks start laying. Made sure I had enough new canning lids, plenty of tylenol and other flu medicinals and herbs, plus spices that are predominatly from China or India. Topped off all gas, diesel and propane containers and at least 2 year supply of oil, lubricants,etc for chainsaws, tractors and vehicles. On the morning of March 11, which was the morning of day that NBA closed down, Seattle schools closed, Broadway closed and the ball started rolling, I recognized that this would be my last run to get supplies. Called a neighbor to ask if she needed supplies, she decided to come. At our local grocery store I had lots of last minute luxuries and a few extra staples to add to what we had like 2 dozen eggs, peppers, more onions and garlic, more apples and oranges, cruciferous vegetables, more carrots, chocolate and sweets for the family and one more extra bag of dog food and biscuits. . No one else seemed concerned or buying with long term in mind. The next morning is when toilet paper disappeared off shelves and the line at our closest Costco in CDA, ID ( 2 hours away) had a line wrapped around building.

    In my opinion, and our situation, I think it is critical to have established a positive working relationship with our neighbors. Our relationships with our neighbors has been cultivated over 15 years. We frequently invite them for dinner or bonfires and make sure everyone has a welcoming home to be at on holidays. When civil society breaks down and/or we experience break downs in good and supplies, we can rely on one another.

    For example, one neighbor has milk cows and provides raw milk, another neighbor has goats and provides milk and cheese as well as being excellent at leather crafts, other neighbors, including our house, have huge gardens and do substantial preserving, one neighbor has a large root cellar and allows others to over winter produce, several neighbors own enough acreage to raise grain and hay and run cattle and sheep. My husband provides reloading services and sawmilling and carpentry. We are generous with our garden bounty allowing neighbors without opportunity to garden to harvest for their families. Two dear friends and neighbors make all their own butter, cheese, yogurt from neighbor with dairy cows. Most everyone in our neck of the woods in far NW west Montana hunt and process their own wild game. Many have chickens and other birds, both layers and meat birds. Several neighbors have bees and honey. A couple of neighbors have backgrounds and degrees in herbal medicine and healing. A few neighbors are very concerned about defense on our road and can see in dire circumstances they would organize us into protection details for the good of all of us.

    We live 20 to 30 minutes from town, depending which state you’re headed too so thinking law enforcement would be of help in a serious situation is out of the question. We only have one another to rely on. We are quite fortunate to live near a seed potato provider that opens their cellars to the public on an honor system basis for quality root vegetables. Firewood is plentiful here. We put away more than we need as do others so we can help elderly or others in need with wood in the winter. Most certainly the person I admire most is a friend and neighbor who had a CSA for a number of years. Makes all her own compost, eats mostly what they harvest from garden or forest, bartering, and wild game. Has the smallest carbon footprint, almost zero. Once the stay at home orders came, her life changed not one bit. Many lessons to be learned from her!

    Most importantly, we have a Bible study group consisting of those on our road. This further binds us together as a like minded Christian community. We praise and thank God everyday for His blessings He has bestowed on us: our relationships, the land, clean water, a good growing climate, abundant resources, stunning scenery, quality small towns with many Christians, strong Biblical churches, and our Savior , Jesus Christ.

    1. Love Montana… what a absolutely beautiful description of a spiritual community to reside and share in this earthly pilgrimage…may The Lord bless all of the people you discuss in this post and your family

    2. @ Love Montana

      So glad you posted. Your community sounds wonderful; we should all be so lucky! As so many of your neighbors obviously “get it” that improves the chances for the whole community in tough times. And I’d guess that as this is now a normative way to behave in your area, it models this as a positive behavior for anyone who hasn’t already been doing these things.

    3. You got it, Ani. Like any good salesperson, you must believe in your product, and know that you’ll receive a whole lot of Nopes until you finally get a Yep. A Perfect Example is Christ. How many did He call in the New Testament, only to have them refuse? Christ’s Examples teach volumes on many subjects, and salesmanship is one of them. He didn’t stop His Ministry because of rebuffs, but kept on going. And no one should make any mistake about this: Getting and teaching others to prepare for times of trial is part of spiritual warfare. Being unprepared and despairing and failing is what the Enemy wants. It is harder to do the right things like you are doing, Ani, than it is to engage in actual combat.

  34. Why not protect your “identity” as a Prepper and also educate? Much in the same way I attempt to lead people to Christ, I ask leading questions that on the surface aren’t anything more than one person wondering something out loud. Often playing dumb and having them “explain” things to me is very effective. For example, “Did you hear the news about those meat processing plants closing? I mean, where else does meat come from? What if all the workers refuse to go back to work? Where else could I get meat?”

    Like dealing with upper management in a corporation, you have to make them think it’s their idea. It’s a long game. It takes months, which we really don’t have now, but eventually they’ll start to realize that ‘they’ don’t have all the answers.

  35. I think these are the same people who fail to live within a budget or to save whether for their old age or for any emergency. At one time I thought it might be a cultural thing, like people from warm countries don’t save or conserve because there’s always fish in the sea and fruit on the trees, and people from cold climates have learned the hard way through millenia that if you don’t can or preserve food you will die before the ground can be worked again. There are “inward thinking” and “outward thinking” people, inwards ponder what-if scenarios and plan for the future, outwards always assume there will be someone, anyone, that they can befriend and leech off of. It is what it is.

  36. Except the fact that this was never a pandemic. The stats have never shown a pandemic, since the beginning.
    A problem seems to be many preppers are still watching mainstream news, and believing it. Many seem to believe there is/was a pandemic with no evidence at all.
    So what is it? That is the emergency.
    Start with Bill Gates, Event 201 and see where you get. All of the ‘experts’ are tied together.
    Their end game, besides getting rich, is ID2020. That is an emergency.
    You need to look into this before we are hit with a flu season again.

    1. If this virus spreads unrestrained throughout the US population and 2.5% of the people die –because the hospitals and doctors are overwhelmed — then that equals about 8 million dead. Compared to the 3000 who died in the Sept 11 attack.

      That might be the optimistic view — the more hosts this virus infects the more chances it has to mutate into something far more lethal.

      Plus some of our most worthy citizens — our doctors, nurses and ambulance EMTs — are playing Russian roulette due to lack of protective gear.

      The situation varies by location, of course. New York City only has 2.5% of US population but around 32% of its deaths.

      https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/er-doctor-who-died-suicide-was-untenable-situation-sister-says-n1195656

      1. Hey Don,

        Fortunately, viruses usually tend to weaken as they mutate, not get more lethal.

        We know for certain that a mortality rate of 2.5% is way too high and some of the ongoing antibody studies are showing it to be as low as 0.1%. As more data comes in over the next few weeks/months, these numbers will get more accurate.

        If 10 people get the disease, but only 3 show symptoms and one dies, everybody is calling that a 33% mortality rate. Not correct. All 10 were infected, so one out of ten is a 10% mortality rate. New York is just starting to get enough antibody data from the general population to begin estimating what portion of the population got infected. So far the data is showing that a high percentage were symptomless and the death rate is closer to 0.5% which is still probably high, and similar studies in Los Angeles are getting results between 0.1% and 0.2% as an overall mortality rate. The common flu has a mortality rate of 0.1%.

        New York: https://thehill.com/policy/healthcare/494324-27m-new-yorkers-have-had-coronavirus-preliminary-data-shows

        Los Angeles: https://abcnews.go.com/Health/results-antibody-test-study-reveal-covid-19-cases/story?id=70249753

        1. St funogas,,DW and I had round with the virus starting in March ,I’m still dealing with the effects, we stayed in for five weeks ,sure we got it in a check out line ,was coughed on ,no big deal for DW ,me ,,, had a bit of problem but am ok , I think a lot has to do with life style,how and what you eat (real food) if it comes in a box don’t eat it ,,and stress levels ,

          The reason I’m posting this is to say it’s not the end of the world for most to get it ,use care but don’t quit living ,

          1. Hey Oldhomesteader, I hope you’re both back to normal and doing fine now. It’s rough not being able to get done what we need to when we’re sick. I live your advice and eat pretty much strictly unprocessed foods and try to keep my stress levels as low as possible. Ignoring the mainstream media, living in the country with lots of tweeting birds and a purring cat help with that. 🙂

            Best wishes to you both.

          2. Oldhomesteader,
            Am thanking God you both made it through the virus…

            I love reading your posts. You have a lifetime of experience to share. Blessings to you and yours in abundance.

    2. “Reader,”

      You are obviously in the ranks of Covid-deniers and conspiracy theorists. You can define pandemic anyway you, personally, wish to do so, but I expect that you don’t have any personal experience in epidemiology or immunology. You’re focused on politics, the media, and such.

      The World Health Organization deserves all of the contempt it is getting right now, but it defined the word pandemic a long time ago. “A pandemic is defined as ‘an epidemic occurring worldwide, or over a very wide area, crossing international boundaries and usually affecting a large number of people.” (The WHO received harsh criticism for not declaring the Wuhan Virus a pandemic until long after it met the definition because it didn’t want to offend its Chinese masters.)

      For all of those who want to dismiss the Chinese Virus as a big nothingburger, read this: https://www.ft.com/content/6bd88b7d-3386-4543-b2e9-0d5c6fac846c

      Then “mansplain” to the rest of us beknighted individuals how this massive spike in deaths is actually attributable to:

      1) that massive cholera outbreak in India we must have missed on the news;
      2) that massive tsunami that wiped out Cuba that we must have missed on the news; or,
      3) that massive volcanic eruption of Mauna Loa that tore the Big Island apart that we must have missed on the news.

      If Covid isn’t the game changer in the cause of deaths, how can you explain the 50% spike in world wide deaths FROM ALL CAUSES for the March to April period. Show me your work. I’ll wait…

      Last paragraph edited out by Lily for Survivormann99. 😉

      1. Sorry! I’m embarrassed. Lest readers think that I have “lost touch,” that last paragraph above was a first draft of part of my message above it, and it was included in my comment by accident.

      2. Hey Survivormann, don’t worry, we’re all losing our touch eventually. 🙂

        The spike in worldwide deaths is a real thing, there’s no contesting that. But you’ll also see a future corresponding drop in worldwide deaths. All this virus did was move a lot of old folks with pre-existing conditions to the head of the line. Not all, but many of those same people who would have died later this year or next year anyway, just took an earlier bus thanks to the virus. So expect a drop in worldwide deaths over the next year or so.

        I got my first notification yesterday from someone I know who knew someone dying of the virus. A text from a friend who had a 100-year old friend in a nursing home die of the coronavirus. I thought to myself, “Wow, one hundred years old? Did he die of the virus or did the virus just kind of nudge him into the casket?”

        Thus my point that I think a high percentage of the “coronavirus deaths” didn’t have long to live anyway and will result in a drop in worldwide deaths over the next year or so once the CoV deaths level off.

        1. I hadn’t given any thought to the potential drop in death rates.

          Yet, about “pre-existing conditions” you refer to, that doesn’t mean that they would have died shortly anyway.

          I found this on the internet (so it must be true):

          “As a 70 yr old US male in good health

          You have ~

          70% chance of living 10 more years
          45% chance of living 15 more years
          20% chance of living 20 more years
          6% chance of living 25 more years
          1% chance of living 30 more years”

          A co-morbidity is described as “the simultaneous presence of two chronic diseases or conditions in a patient.”

          You should be at least a bit skeptical when you hear “experts” say that an extraordinarily high percentage of the dead had co-morbidities, as if to say, well, these people would have been dead anyway. Spoiler Alert: We’re all going to be dead anyway. All anyone can ever do is to extend a life, not “save” it. If the Wuhan Virus is simply “the straw that broke the camel’s back” for some people, it seems to be a pretty hefty “straw.”

          When diabetes and hypertension are listed among the co-morbidities, all I can say is that people very frequently live for decades with these conditions and, for most of that time, thanks to modern medicine and pharmaceuticals, they may not be doing fine, but they are able to do well enough.

    3. @ Reader

      I’m not sure how many extra deaths you need to believe that this is indeed a pandemic. In NYC they are reportedly stashing decomposing bodies in U-Haul’s outside funeral homes that have no way to keep up with the demand. They are now shipping bodies to my state to cremate. This is just not normal.

  37. I know most of the comments on this article has to do with food, but another main thing to remember is to “keep shut” about your likes and dislikes concerning politicians as well, lest they be used against you.

  38. Ani, In life we have the 20/80 Rule , 20% of workers do 90% of the work…in preppping its 1/99 rule..1% prepare. The rest think somebody else is going to save them.

    CAN’T SAVE STUPID… people will always be takers and sadly as Buck said above the same people panic every year as hurricanes approach.

    As somebody also said above ..Operational Security..if people know your prepared and supplied YOUR A TARGET.

    I appreciate your caring attitude, but pick your spots carefully or in a more deadly environment you will be the first casualty. Good luck and continue to prepare.

    1. @ Jim

      I’m not suggesting we make ourselves a target. As much as I’m appalled and repelled by the Doomsday Prepper type shows, I’m also flabbergasted that any true prepper would parade their preps on TV like that. I fully understand that some people will never get it, some are incapable of getting it and some don’t want to get it. As none of us were born preppers, we all had to start somewhere. But as I stated in my article, from a purely selfish standpoint even, it behooves us to get more people prepping. There’s a whole lot of “them” and relatively few of “us”. I’d love to see the ratio change.

  39. I have a question for anyone and it’s this common used statement, “When things get back to normal” or “After this event is over”
    Here is the question, will this event be over and will things go back to normal?
    I think people who believe that have a form of normalcy bias.
    To date we have 30 million people out of work and that just numbers employees and not businesses owners. That has never ever happened in history baring a major war.
    The Government has spent more money in 6 weeks in the history of the US.
    Governors in the West and East Coast states think keep people home for the next few months is a sound strategy-no it’s insane to the extreme
    The business links and supply chains on a global level are damaged badly and in my opinion beyond repair.
    Now food production is breaking down and we see it starting right now with limited meats and the doubling of cost.
    So again, I think we are at the beginning of this Black Swan and what was normal just 6 months ago will never return in our lifetimes.

    Put your faith in Jesus Christ and do not lean on your understanding- See Proverbs 3

    1. @ Skip

      I’ve been thinking a lot about your question re: will things ever return to “normal”. I think that believing that they would is how many have gotten themselves through the past few months. With most things shut down, job loss,the kids out of school, everyone wearing masks, social distancing and all the rest, it’s by clinging to the notion that this will soon be “over” and we will go back to how things “used to be” that we’re not all dissolving into a blubbering lump on the floor.

      For a while I used to say to everyone that when we finally get to crawl out of our bunkers we will have the biggest state-wide block party ever, we will all hug each other and get really close and in each other’s personal space and Ben & Jerry’s will provide free ice cream to us all. Somehow I doubt it….. It is what I wish though.

      I don’t know what the “new normal” will be. I suspect some of it may depend on if infections spike again, if the virus mutates in a bad way(or in a good less-lethal way), how many businesses survive to re-open, how many get their jobs back(or new ones), how many people still have a home to live in, if the food supply stays intact enough and all the rest. And above all will be how people react to how badly our government handled this, the loss of faith and trust that someone(anyone) in charge knew what they were doing and the loss of the feeling of safety that people had, that things would always be the way they had been. What happens when the normalcy bias is destroyed?

  40. ANI ,,,,,,,,,good article ,,,,,,,think of prepping as like being in a lifeboat ,and the ship has sunk ,more people are in the water than the lifeboat will hold. What do you do ??sharks are circling ,, do you pull away ?do you take more than you dare and swamp the lifeboat ?if you pull away will the screams for help haunt you ? What to do ???PTSD is real ,,,oh to win the battle and lose the mind,,,
    Do you know there is 80,000 rolls of TP in a 48 ft trailer ,or a steer will feed 500 people a week ,

    Shalom ,,,,

  41. As Jason said above, sometimes it’s better to ask than to tell. The store has been out of liquid soap on and off. People are jostling each other to grab the maximum limit every time a truck comes in. Right next to it on the shelf are six different brands of bar soap getting dusty.

    I asked a friend on Facebook if anybody was still using bar soap. Remember when your mom kept soap dishes beside every sink and tub? That soap stored compactly, cost less, and smelled wonderful (a soap with Hoppe’s 9 would give Chanel No. 9 a run for its money, I believe). Bar soap made tailor’s chalk for dark fabrics, drew hopscotch games on sidewalks and pictures on fences, warded off moths and fixed squeaky hinges. We’re all going to give it a try, as a sort of “old time” more sustainable thing.

    Maybe ask what everybody’s come up with as substitutes, then make suggestions. Keep it less on prepping and more on “how are we getting by” because preparedness is too dangerous a word for many people, but common sense and old time ideas they will listen to, if only so Auntie Mary will tell them some day how to clean cloth diapers when there are no gloves available 🙂

  42. Although I live very frugally, when my relatively wealthy kin finally refused to stock up, I bought and delivered food for one year for their entire family. They did not refuse it. I received no thanks. They think I am looney-tunes. They are incredibly arrogant and in love with the world. That was years ago, but I know that their blood will not be on my hands. If invited to join me, they would actually be disruptive, so they are on their own. They are filled with the wrong spirit.

    Instead of buying other desirable stuff, I buy inexpensive bulk staple food instead, because without it, nothing else I might have will be useful. You can not eat an ATV, or some radio, or other nice to have thing. I have neighbors with millions in assets who will not take prepping seriously enough, yet this poor boy is prepared to feed them. I get to decide now whether to feed them, so they can be apart of a mutual defense, or having to risk defending myself from them. One of them has told me that they would shoot and eat me in a survival situation. You may decide not to tell them that you are a prepper and work with them, but when you are still fat, and they are starving, they will know that you have what they want. We do not get to choose our neighbors. They may be friendly, but they are not necessarily your friend, and will likely turn on you. Have a significant portion of your food hidden in several cashes. By extra bulk staples foods and garden seed. Invest in food and the ability to produce food instead of gold, or rather than a huge solar system or other such, because your friends, family and neighbors will not stock up enough, and they will become your problem. With extra food you can turn these likely threats into assets and build a community that can defend itself from roving gangs, and other more distant neighbors.

    We live in Godless times, and when starvation is a real prospect, people will quickly become ruthless cannibals who can be filled with a demonic spirit, if they are not already filled with the Holy Ghost. Consider it charity, or enlightened self-interest.

    And choose now if your army can defend your stuff successful, or whether it is better to feed a larger army that is more likely to be successful. But do have an inner circle that is loyal. Without loyalty, you got nothing. And loyal friends and even family are extremely hard to find these days. And do not have it all in one pile. Because once that pile is gone, your neighbors will no longer be friendly. We must also be able to ramp up food production quickly, and get them producing their own.

    I am attempting to be brutally honest. I’ve been betrayed in small and large ways so many times, and by my own family. Trust no one. Sad, but true, because I want to trust every one, and must remind myself. I’ve learned the hard way, and fortunately in good times when the consequences were less severe.

    And please get out of the cities. You will not be successful there.

    1. Tunnel Rabbit… “ we live in Godless times… people will quickly become ruthless cannibals… “ … if one does not believe this can happen simply read the historical accounts of the destruction of Jerusalem in 70 AD written by Josephus

    2. Hey Tunnel Rabbit, you’ve hit the nail on the proverbial head again. If the grid goes down permanently next Tuesday at 3:27 PM, or next year, or in five years, a lot of preppers are going to find themselves in deep feces and wish they had followed your words and thought things through more realistically. But I guess subconsciously everyone’s thinking, “We still have plenty of time…” That’s why I keep dragging my hindquarters on some of my projects. But after reading all the comments generated from Ani’s article, I’ve made a to-do list and already got two items knocked off the list.

      Your comment about cities is spot on.

    3. Word to the uninitiated, when buying garden seeds be sure they are non-gmo so you can save seeds for next year. Many people rely heavily or solely on their local greenhouse for vegetable starts, compost, and the like. If possible, create your own compost pile to lessen reliance on supply chains. If you haven’t tried starting your own tomatoes, peppers, herbs, and many other veg, now is the time to plan to start learning a new skill. Lots of good info on internet gardening sites. My first few years of seed starting was colossal failure. Keep a journal of all things related to gardening in your micro-climate, this is a very valuable tool.

    4. @ Tunnel Rabbit

      I get it. I have also experienced being betrayed, let down and all the rest and I know how truly terrible people can be to each other. And I have experienced much goodness and generosity as well. And sadly, we can’t always pick our neighbors or our family members! But given that, much of my rationale for asking that we all do what we can to get others prepping as much as possible is purely pragmatic. The more around us who are prepared, the fewer we will have to fend off who want our stuff(or to eat us like your neighbor! 😉 ).

      1. Yes, we do need to encourage others to stock up, and for exactly the reasons mentioned. Your article could not be more relevant and timely. I have been pounding the table on that for 14 years and I’m a bit worn out, so this is great opportunity to get this message out.

        I would encourage others to examine their priorities while they might still be able to make changes, and purchase more food, not for themselves, but for those who will not have enough. Invest in the people who will be apart of your community. Turn a likely problem into an advantage. Buy bulk rice or oatmeal for the purpose, food that is still cheap and will fill belly’s. It is not expensive. If this poor boy can, anyone can. Gold and silver is good only as a long term store of excess wealth should one survive to the other side. It will do know one any good if they do not live through this. You will need your own army just to defend your lives. In my experience, most who own gold would rather own that than food because they cannot image the terrible times ahead and do not understand what it take to survive this. They also likely see gold or other assets, as a speculative play. Yes, gold may feed you, but it will take lots of gold to buy food during a famine. Joseph wisely stock up, and the people of Egypt sold all they had to by the food Joseph stockpiled.

        https://www.chabad.org/library/article_cdo/aid/246626/jewish/Joseph-Governor-of-Egypt.htm

    5. “One of them has told me that they would shoot and eat me in a survival situation.”

      It might be wise to, “acquire,” a latent, incurable disease that is infectious throughout the body and not just the brain, like CJD. If you find one to acquire, let me know and I’ll have a medical-bracelet engraved for you. Maybe two. The second one will say, “Eat at your own risk!”

  43. Just like you can’t make somebody prep you cant make them just look at stats. Minnesota: something like 400 deaths corona virus, 5 million people equals around .006. That is less than 1%. Further it’s been this way since the beginning. The only things different were the models and testing (which is dubious). Oh yes and media propaganda.

    Preppers should have their own news sources and gather data outside the mainstream.
    Those really bad supposed outbreaks have been debunked as almost all were 80 yrs old etc. and hospitals never overrun. Fake news.
    I live in Montana, and we are no longer under lockdown. Over Half the people in Costco yesterday still wearing (ineffective) masks.

    The danger is not the flu (weaponised or not), or a ‘pandemic’.
    Will you get vaccinated so you have papers, or worse, ID2020 chipped?
    Are you positive this pandemic is real? It’s hard to admit you were fooled, and Mark Twain would agree.

    1. @ Guest

      Yes. I’m positive this pandemic is real. The impacts though seem to vary greatly depending on where one is. I also believe that there are different strains of it and some are way more lethal than others. So NYC and the surrounding areas have gotten hammered. There are probably a number of reasons for this including population density, the way it was handled in the early days, the strain(s) of virus likely brought there by tourists, their refusal to stop running the subway etc. Italy, Spain and Belgium also got clobbered and still are.

      On the other hand places such as Montana have done really well. So has my own state of Vermont so far. The majority of the deaths here were in a few nursing homes and the average age of those who died was 80, both within and outside the nursing home. And yes, we closed down our economy, our schools and pretty much everything. But how would we know? And perhaps if we hadn’t it would have been much worse?

      I have to recognize that this is new to all of us. Nobody had a crystal ball to tell us how it would play out. And the fat lady still hasn’t sung and we will likely be dealing with this for a while still.

      I honestly don’t think our governor is in cahoots with One World Order folks or Bill Gates. I think he has done the best he could with a situation where we just had no idea how it would play out. And I don’t think most of it is fake news in the least.

      And yes, we do have to watch to be sure that we don’t give up any more of our civil liberties, freedoms, allow them to monitor us with our cell phones, get “chipped”, etc. But I think it behooves us all to keep a solid grip on ourselves and recognize what is real, what is a potential danger and what is just internet conspiracy blather.

  44. One more try. I’ve been lobbed the conspiracy tag several times here while saying nothing that wasn’t factual. Makes me doubt your intent to be honest, as if preppers haven’t had that thrown at them forever.

    Look at the numbers at the CDC site yourself. They are low, and have always been low, everywhere and I included Minnesota because I had just looked at their stats for a relative, which isn’t exactly non populated. .

    Bill Gates is the second largest donor to WHO (first now, if the US really dropped out), Fauci & Birx, to start, have been shown to have interests in Gates businesses for years. Do you think there aren’t people and groups who wouldn’t/couldn’t do this including governments? You trust the UN now? You trust corrupt, criminal New York and California governmental information? The same ones who actually cheered when 9 month abortion was passed? You think they’ll only stop at killing babies? Is that a conspiracy?

    Look at what this ‘pandemic’ has accomplished. Who benefitted?

    Look at what starvation this pandemic has caused in third world countries, then look at their actual numbers. I’m a Christian, too, and they will have justice someday.
    Time to get off the TV and start researching on the internet while it’s still possible, there are facts to be found.

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