Why Preppers have it all wrong

globalintelhub's picture

Prepping has not only gone mainstream, it's infected even the billionaire culture as referenced recently on a ZH article:

When it comes to “prepping”, many among the elite take things to an entirely different level.  As you will see below, the elite are willing to pay big money for cutting edge home security measures, luxury bomb shelters and superyacht getaway submarines. Some of the things that the elite are demanding for their own protection go beyond even what we would see in a James Bond film, and serving the prepping needs of the elite has become a multi-billion dollar business.  Meanwhile, the media outlets that the elite own continue to mock the rest of us for getting prepared.  All the time we see headlines like this one that appeared in a major American news source: “Preppers: Meet the paranoid Americans awaiting the apocalypse“.  Well, if we are paranoid for setting aside some extra food and supplies for the future, what does that make the people that you will read about in this article?

Financial prepping has been the mantra of the 'hedge' fund community since it started to exist.  Instead of just blindly buying stocks and hoping the market always goes up, 'hedge funds' provided a 'hedge' in case the market actually didn't go straight up.  Of course, this is now just for lazy investors, now it's possible to buy options for almost any situation, and insurance companies will sell insurance for anything - even being abducted by aliens (over 30,000 policies sold in Europe according to Geico).

Description of the prepper & background

So let's take the average prepper, metaphorically speaking.  You have your safe house, stockpile of supplies, food, ammo, tools, toilet paper, shortwave radios and other electronics powered by cranks, etc. etc. etc. (depending on how deep your infection).

Financially speaking, you keep your savings in a combination of cash (US Dollars, Euros, and Swiss Francs), gold, silver, bitcoin, and bearer bonds.  If you are really savvy, you're holding the paper on several nearby farms in a fair deal whereby they pay down their principle in cash and interest & fees in milk, beef, and in the summer vegetables.

You own several properties in the names of charities you've setup just for this purpose... ok you get the idea.  Take it to the extreme.  The estute prepper has done all this and more - he's ready for anything!

The problem

Now the calamity comes - whether it be a global pandemic, alien invasion, terrorists, the United Nations with foreign troop invasion - take your pick.  It's really bad, but you survive - because you are ready for anything!  So now you've survived - NOW WHAT?  

Do you come out of your bunker after the smoke has cleared?  What will you do all day?  What will other survivors do?  Will you try to communicate with other preppers?  What if in the process of that communication - you discover that you are a little more prepared than they, and they trick you into a meet whereby they kidnap you and force you at gunpoint to give up your safe location and supplies?  

What if there is a secret group of 'anti-preppers' who are right now preparing for ways to steal from preppers, based on their security flaws and lack of planning?  

What if there is a group right now setup by the government, who is monitoring preppers, that within 24 hours of said 'calamity' will be taken into custody (or otherwise dealt with).

What is to stop the military from seizing your supplies, and forcing you to join their chain gang?  

The problem is that in order to really be 'prepared' - one must strive to be a stronger fighting force than the strongest army in the world (be it whatever you think in your opinion) because in a real crisis, the only currencies are 1) intelligence and 2) accelerated lead.  Accelerated lead is a quickly depleting resource whereas intelligence can grow and be self-replicating.  

Prepping generally speaking is a good thing, to use example of global pandemic - if everyone in the world is prepared and follows WHO guidelines, the pandemic will not exist!  Probably the same could be true with financial markets.

The point here is to realize that like with anything - the popularization of 'prepping' has warped the purity of the concept.  

The idea itself - very noble.  But in practicality, in reality, if there is an apocalypse, where are you going to go shopping with your gold and silver coins?  

Especially in America where we like to do things to extremes (like eating for example) - we've taken prepping to a new fangled art form.  But it's this 'new level' that is the snake oil - not the concept of prepping.

Just in case

Mossberg sells a package "Just in Case" that includes survival kit, shotgun, all neatly packaged in a waterproof tube (that also can double as a flotation device).  It's a great analogy for the prepping movement.  It's a great thing to have - JUST IN CASE.  99% of buyers of this will never use it.  

But - IT'S BETTER TO HAVE IT AND NOT NEED IT, THAN TO NEED IT AND NOT HAVE IT!  -The Avid Prepper

Financial Prepping

What can one do to financial prepare themselves?  This completely depends on the situation, and depends on the extent you want to prepare for.  As a general rule, you just want to be more prepared than your neighbor, but only a little.  That means - forget about the kevlar suit that can withstand 1,000F burns, or the bitcoin wallet that can only be opened with one time pad; each hidden in 2 secure locations in Europe.

Also, forget this naive idea about hoarding physical gold or cash - as if it will help you.  You're just painting a target on your back!  Where will you spend this cash?

Some reasonable prepping steps to be a 'pure prepper' 

  • Have a healthy options portfolio
  • Take the other side (even if you don't agree with it)
  • Invest in some really crazy ideas - if everyone you know says 'don't do it - it's crazy' - DO IT!
  • Invest and trade LOCALLY, at least a little.
  • Keep multiple accounts open with different TYPES of brokerage firms/banks - not only the same institution where your 401k is.  Not all of them will die.
  • Participate in some class action lawsuits for securities or similar cases - even if you won't get a big payout.  When the dollar bubble really pops, you'll have a friend who can help you get 20 cents on the dollar from Bank of America.
  • Make some foreign connections, who may not be in the same predicament as most in America
  • As much as possible, try to do things for yourself.  Having your deck resurfaced?  Do it yourself!  Do your own research - don't rely on a service (and certainly not your broker!)  
  • Educate yourself!  Learn a foreign language, or study that course in wreath making you've been putting off for so long.  Remember, although the world is a large place - the majority of nuclear fuel rods are made by hand by Samurais in Japan:

Although Japan Steel Works is a major corporation with 5,000 employees, it also maintains a samurai sword blacksmith, in a small shack on a hill above the factory in Muroran, where a single craftsman still hammers steel into broadswords, as the company has done since 1917.

Just remember.  For those who think the apocalypse is coming - there are just as many who believe it's already here.  Just ask some Detroit residents.  

Looks like the Zombies have already invaded and destroyed our cities.  

 

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Colonel Klink's picture

Proof or STFU!  Mere existance of something physical doesn't validate your point.

cpnscarlet's picture

"The fool is quick to take an offense, but a wise man embraces a rebuke."

It's from an old book that people once read alot.

Bob's picture

A wise man gets more use from his enemies than a fool from his friends.

http://www.quotationspage.com/quote/813.html

justdues's picture

Yeah , the "hero " in that book is from what Tribe  ? Goyim will be muppets, they lap up the Hollyweird shit too

A Nanny Moose's picture

But his own tribe murdered him.

techpriest's picture

They murdered most all of their own prophets actually. Something about human nature.

silverer's picture

What is the difference between religion and truth?

FrankDrakman's picture

Well, here's the OED on what the big bang was: "Astronomy The rapid expansion of matter from a state of extremely high density and temperature which according to current cosmological theories marked the origin of theuniverse."

Now, here's Genesis: In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.2

And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness wasupon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

3And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.

 

Except for the style of the language, in each case, there was 'nothing' and then something came out of it. 

"What's the difference between religion and truth?" Is there one?

durablefaith's picture

The book of Eli does a good job is illustrating the answer.

To the pure all things are pure, to the defiled nothing is pure.

e_goldstein's picture

Truth doesn't demand 10% of your pre-tax income.

Raging Debate's picture

e-Goldstein - Haha good one. But ever been to a temple? I have. If you dont give when asked for donotations your the cheap dick and ostracized. So nothing has changed. I am not a Jew just figured I would see what all the tribal hubub was about. Cant say Ill go back but like most religions the forest is lost through the trees. 

Colonel Klink's picture

Hahaha, perfect answer, and true at that.

GeezerGeek's picture

Afraid of something? Just don't read it. Or are you one of those thin-skinned victims we keep reading about?

ToSoft4Truth's picture

The nice Israeli folk already have the cashless system we’ll use in place. 

We’re gonna chop your heads off in a guillotine.  Your head will remain alive in the pile for at least 15 seconds after the lop.

And you’re going to willingly walk right in.   

‘so it has been written so it shall be done’      

Money Counterfeiter's picture
Money Counterfeiter (not verified) ToSoft4Truth Nov 12, 2015 11:48 AM

Rope for the bankers.

Nobody For President's picture

Ultimate prep is to know your neighbors, have a plan to work together if TSHTF, and stockpile what you need, then stockpile what you can. Food, Lead, guns and gold and/or silver. You will never figure out all of it, but have a base, and know your neighbors - community will get you through when all else fails. 

Always has, always will. Check the last 2000+ years.

o r c k's picture

This sounds like "prepping for the wealthy" And your anti PM rant? Here's a secret you've never even imagined--some rare humans can actually do 2 things at once. Stack PM's AND do all the other stuff. Hard to even imagine ain't it ?!

KnuckleDragger-X's picture

It all depends on what your prepping for, and how you go about it. I'm prepared to help rebuild society with the help of a few friends and my neighbors. I also live deep in flyover country, far away as possible from the free shit army. It may, or may not work out, but I'm not going to whine and blame somebody else if I can doing something about my little corner of the universe......

Vampyroteuthis infernalis's picture

Yes, we are going to see the rise of flyover country as it becomes a reality that the coast societies will collapse. The FSA does not produce a functioning society, not today and never will.

ultraticum's picture

Flyover country has many flavors.  Some rural areas in the middle or mid-south part of the USSA are more riddled with scooter-chair-riding, overweight, welfare-dependent cult-statists than most people would realize.  The free shit army rules in the old small town square and its environs.  Every other yard or driveway in so-called flyover rural Illinois has a "We Support State Workers" sign (solidarity in resisting the new (R) governor's efforts at fiscal responsibility). 

But if you're talking rocky mountain flyover country, now that's a slighly more independent mind-set - in very broad terms.

 

madcows's picture

I gave you an upvote for your name.

This year's "choice" on the left is an avowed socialist or a criminal psychopath.

This year's "choice" on the right is any number of clowns and/or democrats.

Both sides are fighting for who gets credit for giving illegals citizenship.  awesome.  so much for choice.

ebworthen's picture

I prep so I can join the lynch mobs for Washington and Wall Street.

ebworthen's picture

Thank you kind Sir/Madam.

Pinch's picture

Now the calamity comes - whether it be a global pandemic, alien invasion, terrorists, the United Nations with foreign troop invasion

The funniest thing about preppers is that most of them are right wing idiots from the flyover states who deny global warming exists. So here we have them denying the biggest threat on earth while preparing for fantasies like the UN invasion or a solar EMT pulse, and other exotica. LOL!

Manthong's picture

 I prep so that I will emerge the Warlord of my neighborhood.

I can always work a little trip out east to hook up with ebworthen into the Warlording schedule.

Actually, it sounds like a dream vacation to me.

NidStyles's picture

I prep so I'm not wiping my ass with crisp Federal Reserve notes. I like being able to have the comfort of real proper toilet paper.