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Friday, January 27, 2017

long term thinking 2 of 2


LONG TERM THINKING 2
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After a readers comment, I looked up how old my original dried hot dogs were.  Surprisingly-time flies as you careen towards the grave-it was a year ago.  So, taste test time.  The dog loved them-which proved nothing.  I ate about one links worth and stopped due to the salt overload.  But I didn't get sick from it, I just had a bit of a tender stomach from it. Which, given my heartburn, was as expected.  I've had worse reactions to fresh Slim Jim's.  So, I still call it an edible item after storage, even if you want to eat something along with it and beware the high salt level.
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Briefly, let me just mention the plot device.  Whether is it for a book or for a movie, without a proper plot you do not have a tale for the masses.  Your book might appeal to a niche if you have a bizarre method of presentation or some other gimmick.  If it is an instruction manual disguised as a story you can get away with a weak plot.  But, more often than not, you’ll find a plot, good or bad or indifferent.  The problem here is that you might mistake the plot for reality.  A plot is just a device, a tool.  It isn’t real life.  Nobody wants to read about your life because you are just another mouth breather amongst the other seven billion short bus passengers.  However, if you are portrayed as having a nearly insurmountable obstacle to overcome, and you do so in a convincing manner, and there is a message given subtlety or not to wrap up the whole tale, suddenly your life becomes a Hallmark Movie Of The Week.  And there, my fine feathered minions, is how most people look at the apocalypse.  A plot, any plot, they’ve read or watched uncountable times.

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Here is reality.  Blah, blah, blah, minding his own business, suddenly, boom, he is shot in the head from ambush, soils himself and the family perishes in the flames as the homestead is burnt to the ground.  See, there?  No story arc, no obstacles to overcome.  No background story to flesh out characters, no suspenseful lead up to a climax.  And certainly no happy ending.  But almost everyone preps like their post-apocalyptic journey is out of a novel.  The only ones who acknowledge they won’t live too long after the collapse are the old humpers that have lived long enough to no longer care what happens and are realistic about their odds of survival.  The younger ones ( and this includes those mentally immature since they can’t face their mortality, regardless of physical age ) are in complete denial.  I’m certainly NOT saying your post-apocalypse adventure can’t be a grand one.  Just that only those not paralyzed by their own imminent demise will have a chance of lasting long enough to embark upon one. 

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The simple fact is that most of us won’t survive the die-off.  Which makes you wonder what all your preps are for.  Look, I understand that none of us see the future in the same way.  I look at it like a money back guaranteed total collapse, 99.99? % die-off.  A petri dish collapse ( remember, even the very last reindeer on the artic island died of starvation ).  You probably see less dire happenings ( and by the way, since this is my blog and I’ll cry if I want to, I’m going to keep trying to convince you I’m right and you are wrong.  No offense ).  Only you can decide what is best for you.  Still living in the city?  I’m sure you have plenty of good enough reasons to stay there, so how am I to be a judge?  When I spew in exasperation over any minion still residing in too large of a urban area, obviously you should take into account I’m well versed most of you are not as paranoid as I am ( you simple bastard.  I’m kidding!  Relax, Francis ).  But perhaps I can assume, if you are still reading after a short time, you aren’t one of those Prepper Pussies, only concerned with a few weeks disaster preparedness rather than a far more manly end of the world survivalist?

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Can most of us agree that one years supplies is a minimum and far better to quickly work towards a three to five year stockpile as the new normal?  Myself, I’ve been working towards a five year supply of everything.  Five years of the bare bones, wheat and ammo basically, that is no big deal.  To supply EVERYTHING, that isn’t so easy.  All those clothes and footwear and health care items ( five years of toothpaste, of butt wipe, of aspirin and bandaids and laundry soap and hand soap and medicines and on and on ), all that entertainment and transportation and etcetera, etcetera.  A tough nut to crack.  Certainly it is no where near impossible.  I consider it a worthy goal.  And I think I’m close enough to be done.  But here is my question.  Do I think I’ll use it all?  Hell, no!  I have no illusions of surviving long at all. 

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I’ve only endeavored to stockpile everything I have because 1) what else am I going to do with my money? And 2) if the Fates screw me and let me live, I’d feel foolish for not having prepped accordingly.  But for most of us for whom survivalism is an interest rather than a all consuming hobby, you may not even come close to needing anything other than a bare bones one year stockpile.  If you are going to die anyway, wouldn’t it just be better to do the minimum and them relax ( well, relax except for continuing to read and support your favorite blog here )?  I’m not trying to dissuade anyone from being extra paranoid.  I encourage and celebrate those who rightfully cringe and weep in terror more than would seen necessary.  All I’m saying is that it seems a particularly odd thing that we are all so paranoid to assume the worst, and plan for it, but refuse to match up our planning with our paranoia.

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I’m not trying to encourage the old Cold War mentality of those who lived in the city to die instantly as they didn’t believe surviving was an optimal plan.  I think everyone should go into the light kicking and fighting.  But go in fighting knowing it is futile and you are just trying to take a few of the bastards with you.  A warriors death.  They didn’t fear dying but strove to make their death matter.  So, no defeatism here.  Just a wry amusement at our focus on long term prepping and survival when all we are really engaged in is mental masturbation.  We are living a fantasy of longevity.  If you only have a years supply of preps, and that was hard enough to come up with, perhaps you should just be happy with that.  Not a recommendation, just a reality check.  Strive for the impossible, but realize reality.

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22 comments:

  1. optimism in the minds of the powerful kills. The royal orange bastard is acting like a kid in a candy store. We do act out our own plots in life, For most men it is as provider. Women get to be nurturers, even if the have rotten black souls encasing a cold heart of stone. The largest prep will be knowing how to live withour our plots. Hate to think of how many tough hardnosed men completely fell apart after a divorce. Life will suck for the prepared. The unprepared will just lay down and die.

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    1. King Cheeto? Did we try that one already?

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  2. My feeling is that a waterfall/rapids/waterfall type collapse and die off is what will be occurring. Every days worth of stored supplies will allow someone in your community an extra day+ of survival, either because you aren't fighting for the food with them or because they have the food after you pass away from the latest cause of death. Hopefully that person is you or your closest loved ones, but tribe is tribe and your preps will be appreciated by *someone*.
    The chances you will survive the first plunge to die off if you are even half way prepared is much better than most peoples. Eventually something will kill you. Who knows what or when, but it will happen - maybe old age at 120, but eventually. If you have preps left over after you die it means you prepared enough. If you died because your preps were insufficient it means you lost. If your preps were enough that your children and grandchildren survive to have kids of their own you have won the lottery. If you have left the grandkids well enough established that they can and do prep themselves your team has won, congratulations!

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    1. He who dies with the most toys wins. That was yesterday. Tomorrow, he who dies with leftover gruel wins.

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  3. Great article.

    I got a laugh at the Stripes reference.

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  4. Five years of toilet paper... What did the indians (feather) from your area use to wipe themselves, sand? Not trying to be funny, just curious. Perhaps you could try the native method and report back? I've used leaves and those work okay.
    Peace out

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    1. I have bundles of newspapers. Also plenty of rags. To save on the rags, one wipe with paper for most of the solids removed. It might save water and soap just foregoing the rags and using water directly, but that might be a cultural adaptation that takes some getting used to. The local Indians were scarce here-a pretty resource poor area here. Not sure if their experience is applicable.

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    2. May I suggest when stockpiling date paper that you consider the double length rolls? They don't take up much more space (as in negligible) than the lower length ones.

      There's an interesting youtube video about date paper inflation https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2Tg-KkRgiGI&t=45s

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  5. Lord Bison,
    Being a type one diabetic, I only plan on surviving until my insulin runs out, about 6 months. Seems like a better plan for me is extra ammo to take a few bastards out before I die...

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    1. In your case, then, I'd recommend semi-auto's and lots of mags and ammo. And even MRE's and freeze dried. Might as well engage in an orgy of Oil Age excess.

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    2. 6 months should provide enough time to identify traitors

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    3. With the correct diet and herbal supplements even type 1 diabetics can live for quite a while with minimal medical intervention. Eventually the Diabetes will kill them if something doesn't beat it. SO- don't count on *only* 6 months (but then, don't *count on* longer either - just have a little extra insurance)
      Depending on the nature of the die off even a type 1 diabetic may have a good chance of mid to long term survival.
      But then again I am one of those who grab even the smallest sliver of hope to motivate to persevere. And it has worked for me in some very dark times.

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  6. Google the % of US population on prescribed opioid and psychiatric drugs. That alone may change how you look at any type collapse scenario.
    Just saying...

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    1. Without looking, I'd just guess from the folks I know that everyone wants to be on happy pills. And they are already touched in the head. Sure, a few will go bonkers, but many others will be so stupid they become easier targets.

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    2. The solution to this and several other collapse problems is to get away from high population density areas. Fewer people means fewer people problems.

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    3. Yep!!
      In my entire county there are less than 4k people.
      And it is a county that is large enough to reach the county seat from any border would take most of a day (or more) on foot and the surrounding counties are not too much larger or closer.
      The bad news is that just south of the county is a Native reservation (at least 3 days foot travel away), but their high population towns are on the far side of the reservation, and their are higher population places for the criminal element from there to head that would take them further away from here.
      Our biggest problem will be the fact that as close to the border as we are we will have front row seats to any sort of canada vs US war, and be frequently used for border patrol agents.
      Trade offs.

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    4. I'm ready to laugh my dingus off when Canada invades a shattered US, pay back for our two invasions.

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  7. Good point James about prepping like a storybook fantasy is going to be your script for the Aftermath. Remember the ridiculous Tri-States books from the nineties? Half the print ads in ASG personals section of the time claimed to be strong adherents to "Tri-states philosophy". Meaning they were sold on the plot as their future. The original inspiration for King Kristian Militia?

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    1. Out Of The Ashes, right? Read the first in the series several times, those following once or not at all. If I recall correctly it was basically Swiss culture transformed here, with more death penalty and less politeness. The good thing about it was that it was actually a mix of politics, not just rabid left or right. A slightly more intelligent approach. I enjoyed it for that alone. The rest of the series was lame. I think the political view was what sold, but realistically Americans don't seem to be sold on balanced politics but more radical stanced ones. Probably a left-over from all those crazy religious cult immigrants. After the apocalypse all the groups would fight to accent one aspect of the philosophy and reject others, as we do with the Constitution ( all free speech but no gun rights ).

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    2. I knew you would remember and know the scoop. Thanks for the synopsis and reply.

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