Country Living Series

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Don't come a-knockin at my door

Recently I received a request from someone wanting me to mention his website on my blog. This is a fairly common occurrence, so as usual my husband and I vetted the website to make sure it was appropriate.

What we found was startling. This person had the most astoundingly good idea, executed in the most astoundingly bad way.

Essentially the deal is this. The website hooks up urban “preppers” with rural counterparts so, if the bleep ever hits the fan, the urban refugees have a pre-arranged place to go.

Sounds real spiffy, doesn’t it? Except here’s the thing: unless it's stated someplace I haven't looked on this website, the urban refugees have to do nothing beyond making these arrangements with their rural counterparts. The burden of food, water, medicine, protection, housing, and other issues falls squarely on the shoulders of the rural residents. In other words, the rural folks do all the work. Sounds suspiciously like ants and grasshoppers.

I can think of a hundred and one reasons why this isn’t a good idea, all of them detrimental to the country people who would be expected to cooperate by taking in what could well be a swell of refugees.

Why a swell? Well, picture this: the bleep has hit the fan and the urban refugee – we’ll call him Charlie – prepares to evacuate to, um, Bob’s farm. Charlie gathers up his wife and children. But wait! His cousin Marty and his wife and four kids live down the block! Charlie can hardly leave them behind. So he gets Marty to come along too. But Marty’s sister-in-law Jane, who is single and has two kids, can hardly be left behind either. No problem, bring ’em along. And Jane begs to bring her elderly mother since, after all, she can’t leave the dear lady behind.

Before you know it, Charlie has amassed fifty or sixty dearly loved and very scared people. Through harrowing adventures they finally make it, breathless, exhausted, hungry, perhaps injured, to poor unsuspecting Bob’s farm in the middle of nowhere.

What can Bob do? He can hardly turn them away since, after all, he agreed to take Charlie and his family in. (I’m being optimistic here. Bob certainly can turn them away, the cad. But let’s assume he doesn’t, for the sake of argument.)

Suddenly, with fifty extra mouths to feed, the year’s supply of food Bob had painstakingly amassed is cut down to a mere week. Sleeping accommodations are shoulder to shoulder across every available floor space. The septic tank, unused to an influx of so many new people, clogs and fills and backwashes. Bob has to get used to a bunch of strangers in his private home.

See the problem?

I can’t blame Charlie, of course. Who wouldn’t grab the chance to save your beloved friends and family members since Bob is nice enough to sign up for this deal in the first place? It’s just human nature to do anything to survive a bad situation, and Charlie will naturally hope Bob is willing to take in anyone, as long as Charlie vouches for them.

Make no mistake – I applaud the concept behind this website, which has the intention of saving the lives of urban people. There are few things nobler than working to save lives. But, in effect, this removes much of the burden of contingency plans and preparedness from the hands of the urbanites and places it, to an unfair degree, on the shoulders of the ruralites. Why someone would think that rural types would be thrilled to welcome complete strangers is beyond me, but let’s work with that assumption as well, for a moment.

It is almost guaranteed that any urban refugees would be arriving with little more than the clothes on their backs. They’re refugees, after all. They are unlikely to bring a significant amount of supplies, food, water, garden seeds, livestock, canning jars, medical supplies, kerosene lamps, and few if any munitions. Not to sound harsh and unfeeling here, but unless there are pre-existing ties of love or affection or blood, how much of a burden will these refugees be to the host family under survival conditions?

Here’s the thing that seems to get lost, too. Virtually all rural folks who are “prepping” – at least every single person I know – already has an extensive laundry list of beloved friends and relatives they will take in if the bleep hits the fan. I doubt there will be many ruralites who would be willing to take in additional people – strangers, no less – by signing up with this website. Stores of food and other essentials will be stretched thin enough as it is. We ruralites will be unlikely to turn away beloved friends and family members, but we’re equally unlikely to welcome complete strangers with nothing to offer. Sorry to sound harsh, but none of us has inexhaustible resources.

Along with this pre-made list of friends and family the ruralites already plan to take in, most ruralites also have in place (or should have in place) food and supplies to donate to charity cases. In other words, if a stranger named Charlie came begging at Bob’s door, desperate for food or medicine, Bob would very likely be able to alleviate Charlie’s immediate needs even though Bob may not invite Charlie to live with him. Most rural preppers, in addition to stockpiling resources for their own families and friends, are stockpiling a little extra to give away to those in need. We are not heartless, but nor do we have inexhaustible resources.   Most of us are in a lower economic bracket simply by living where and how we do. We can’t afford to feed everybody.

There’s also the problem of living with people. It’s tough enough getting along with people we know and love. How do we know we’re going to get along with people about whom we know nothing beyond reading an internet profile and emailing back and forth a few times? We have no idea what they’re like, and we’re inviting them into our home to live with us through the most dire and stressful of circumstances? NOT!

Yet another problem – possibly the biggest – with this website hooking up urbanites and their rural counterparts is the notion of “OpSec.” OpSec, for those unfamiliar with the term, stands for “Operational Security.” It refers to keeping one’s (cough) “hoard” of preparedness supplies secret so as to avoid being besieged by the “Golden Horde” of urban refugees ravaging and pillaging across the countryside post-bleep. (“Hey Charlie, where are you going?” “I’m bugging out with my family. Want to come, too?” “Sure!” And before you know it, there’s a “Golden Horde” of urban refugees following the yellow brick road to their own personal Oz…namely, the homes of rural preppers.)

Incidentally, many folks have expressed concern that I’m so outspoken and obvious about our prepping. They’re right – I’m using my real name and have made no secret about our concerns for the future of our economy. We who have chosen to publicly inform people of the coming dangers recognize that our operational security is therefore compromised. That’s our choice, based upon what we believe our God-given calling is. But because it’s too late to “hide” or start using an alias, we’ve decided to use whatever modest influence we have to urge people to stop denying the social and economic troubles that are looming, and become preppers too. As for placing ourselves at risk post-bleep… well, we’ll see. After all, OpSec means not letting everyone know everything.

So what’s to be done about the very real problem of urbanites being trapped in cities during times of strife? What if they want to bug out to rural locations? This is a dicey issue worth examining. Here are a few ideas.

1.  If you want to escape from the city, make your own private plans and do not broadcast them to every Tom, Dick, or Harry of your acquaintance. Send supplies ahead of you. Send lots of supplies ahead of you, well before the bleep hits the fan.

2.  Make yourself valuable. I know a wonderful man who is a fine theater actor. But he himself admits acting is his only skill. What advantage would he be at a rural retreat during times of extreme strife? Answer: very little. Whereas your average doctor would almost certainly never be denied refuge. See my point?

We – meaning, those of us prepping in rural areas – will be more likely to take in those with useful skills. If your most useful skill is shopping or meditation or social activism, don’t expect us to be thrilled to invite you into our prepped home because, frankly, you’d be useless. But if you have practical skills – medicine or defense or mechanics or food preservation or animal husbandry or veterinarian skills or something similarly needed – you’re far more likely to find an open door. So start learning something practical NOW.

3.  Prepare the way. If you’ve arranged a private refuge in advance, one thing that will guarantee welcome is for you to help fund an expensive project that might otherwise be out of reach for a rural family (because most rural families are low-income and often can’t afford fancy improvements). Perhaps you could pitch in to buy a windmill for the well, or install a solar array, or help build an underground bunker.

4.  Do things contractually. If/when the bleep hits the fan, folks (urban and rural) are likely to a lot more hysterical than normal. Having your plans in writing ahead of time clarifies all the obligations, expectations, and limitations between the two parties (i.e., you’re not allowed to show up with fifty extra people in tow). This contract can also include what the urban person can and cannot bring. Pets should be included in this list. If the rural refuge is not prepared to handle your yappy Pomeranian because he has three aggressive German Shepherds, you need to know that in advance.

5. Don’t lie about your skills or abilities. If you state with confidence that you’re an expert at hunting and butchering – but have never held a rifle or dispatched a steer – that will be discovered soon enough. Learn those skills first before you claim knowledge. Duh.

6. Get used to hard physical labor. Those of us living on farms and homesteads already work our tails off, and even so we often have crop or livestock failures due to circumstances beyond our control. If you’re not willing to work your butts off, don’t come knocking at our door.

So how do my recommendations differ from the efforts of this website to hook up urban and rural folks to provide refuge? Perhaps they don’t. Maybe this website just needs to better clarify the obligations of all parties involved. But I do know that, as a rural prepper, the idea of signing up on a public website to voluntarily provide refuge to strangers strikes me as foolish to the point of idiocy. I, for one, wouldn’t sign up for something like this in a gazillion years because it opens a Pandora’s box of trouble. And I’m saying this as an already public prepper with my OpSec already blown.

If this website maintains its current format, I foresee a slew of enthusiasm from urban folks and a significant reluctance from country folks.

My $0.02.

33 comments:

  1. amen. I recently got a peak at the larder of one of your fellow friends in ID. I told her to take down that picture asap. Thank you for sharing your tips, just continue not showing everything.

    Ken

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  2. I agree with EVERYTHING you say ... from a carnal/physical standpoint. But, let's take it up a notch.

    I have to ask ... where is your faith?

    The following is an excerpt from an entry on my Faithful Prepper's blog.

    So, what sets faithful preppers apart from the others?

    The simple answer is "our priorities set us apart" ... if we have the right priorities, we should not fear.

    “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles (unbelievers) seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” (Matthew 6:31–33)

    God assures us that if we stay close to Him, we will have everything we need ... but, as He gives us more, He will also expect more of us. (Matthew 25:14–30)

    With blessings/wealth comes responsibility ... and there are blessings/wealth that money cannot buy.

    So, how are you ... my fellow prepper ... using your blessings/preps/riches/stores? Your hidden treasures?

    True treasure cannot be found by building up, and laying up, our personal riches/stocks and stores.

    “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal; but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matthew 6:19–21)

    All of our preps are conditional, physical, and temporary. All of the thought and time spent on "acquiring" is still conditional, physical, and temporary ... and it also borders upon idolatry, but that is another topic entirely.

    Everything we lay up (or store) for ourselves can spoil, or be stolen. And if you are already a homesteader, or prepper, you KNOW this.

    I cannot tell you how many things I've read about how critical it is to rotate stock to prevent loss/spoilage ... and how critical it is to protect your stockpiled goodies from all the anticipated SHTF refugees and/or zombies.

    ^A protective mindset that is caused by fear ... yet another topic.^

    But I digress.

    When you gain some extra blessings/preps/riches/stores/wealth, and when you add it to your growing stash, do you mainly think about how well fed and protected YOU will be when it gets bad-bad?

    Or do you think first about your responsibility as a steward of what God has given you? Do you think about how you can use your wealth to those beyond your family, friends, and loved ones? Do you think about how you can thank your Creator, and support His Work, for all the blessings you've been GIVEN?

    Or do you have the attitude of Pa Anderson ... remember him from a previous entry?

    You've filled that space. You've saved, and shopped, and stocked. It wouldn’t be there, and you wouldn’t have it, if you hadn’t done it all. By yourself. You worked dog-bone hard for every crumb and morsel in that there pantry.

    But, as a safe afterthought, you might as well go ahead and thank the Lord just the same.

    God is looking at our hearts.

    Are you stocking physical treasures? Or spiritual treasures?

    With Love,
    Your Faithful Prepper
    (where autonomy and faith collide)


    P.S.
    Just something to ponder ... I won't charge a single penny for these thoughts :)

    God bless ... love your blog.

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  3. When I began reading your article, I was also shocked that those in the country would choose to allow those in the city to simply invade their homes. Not to mention the safety concerns associated with allowing a complete stranger around all of your supplies....I'm in the city, but I would never expect my country friends to take care of me if the bleep hits the fan. It's presumptious of city-dwellers to act as though those in the country owe them protection/security during times of hardship. Thank-you for the excellent article!

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  4. All excellent points. When I started meeting up with other preppers, we wanted (originally) to collect a group that would come out to our place and help make it work for everyone. It takes a number of people to grow food and protect a place. We made a point though, of having everyone come to monthly meet ups and discuss prepositioning supplies, perhaps bringing in a camper and winterizing it so that they would have a space oftheir own. The agreement has been, you bring your own stuff as much as possible and if you are bringing extra people, you must have your own living quarters (camper etc). It's still a gamble, but by having them come out once a month, they at least show good intent and we teach them things.

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  5. Wow ...people never cease to amaze me!

    Would the person who is advocating this be a city slicker by any chance? I'm just thinking that if they already LIVE a rural lifestyle and already KNOW how much work is involved, they would never propose such a thing. I'm pretty sure their heart is in the right place, but let's hope they take you're $0.02 to heart and do a little more thinking on the subject.

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  6. My wife and I also have a list of people who we will take in once the bleep hits the fan, and no one is on it. Instead, we've been sending everyone we know articles, stories and notices of what to do BEFORE all hell breaks loose. We are barely able to set aside enough food and water for ourselves, let alone many others from miles around, as well as relatives and close friends! Some might think we're being callous, but it HAS to be this way. We all have to STOP spoiling our children, friends, neighbors and all those who won't or don't care about the future, or we surely will ALL go down together! As for this website wanting to hook up urban preppers with rural counterparts so urban refugees will have a pre-arranged place to go with the intention of saving the lives of urban people... I'm not so sure. Sounds to me like some liberal progressives are trying to cause us preppers a lot of trouble and headache. I'd be very leery of this website if I were you.

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  7. Patrice, I really like your take on this. I'm a country girl who, because of my husband's job, has to live in an urban area. While we understand that there are limits to urban survivalism, we have no intention of mooching off of rural people who had the sense to prepare better than we did. Despite our limited space and resources, we are working our darndest to be self-sufficient (or at least to have goods available for bartering) when/if TSHTF. God willing, don't expect us to be a-knocking on your door unless it's just to say hi! :D

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  8. Also, there are a number of different schools of thought on "hunkering down" vs. "bugging out." When/if TSHTF, there is no guarantee that urbanites will even be able to get out of the city (what about martial law situations?) and there is certainly no guarantee that they'd be able to reach their destination (what if they're forced to travel on foot because of an EMP?). In some circumstances, city folk would be better served to just stock up on some food and water and wait things out rather than crowding up the roads and heading for the hills.

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  9. WOW!!! Yet another way to redistribute wealth. Another way for some among us to ignore their responsibilities. No thank you, I'll pass.

    Plus, I love it when people use the Bible to instill guilt in others. What would Jesus do? I can hear them saying that right now. What would Jesus do? He'd tell us to prepare for the bad times while the times are good. He'd tell us to love thy neighbor, but He didn't tell us to indulge the greed and folly of others, at our own expense. Nowhere in the Bible does it instruct us to be stupid and suicidal.

    I've said it before and I'll repeat myself. I will help those who are trying to honestly help themselves. I will not and cannot help all those who think they have a RIGHT to my stores.
    Nor will I embrace another plan to restribute wealth. Perhaps that other website has only the noblest of intentions, but it found a dumb way to implement them.

    No thanks, I'm so done supporting those who refuse to help themselves. The well is dry at this house.

    Is it any wonder why many of us keep our prepping to ourselves?

    Anonymous Patriot
    USA

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  10. Like I said, I agree with everything on a carnal/physical level .... even what YOU said, anonymous "patriot."

    Spiritual is attitude ... heart's intent.

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  11. I ruined my above comment by enclosing "patriot" within "snarkyness."

    Time to examine myself a bit more ... these conversations are compelling, and I love them :)

    By the way, I am NOT of liberal leanings and I am very much conservative and constitutional in my mindset.

    And I am also a patriot ... meaning, I love my country.

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  12. Save the Canning JarsSeptember 5, 2010 at 4:12 PM

    Great post.

    Charlie, you better prepare NOW!

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  13. As the saying goes...The road to Hell is paved with good intentions...
    The website, while(maybe?)having good intentions, will be nothing short of a Hitler's list...
    Charity starts at home and unless you are self sufficient,and can produce more then you consume, then the reality is that there can be little if any "extra" food for charity from the average citizen...In reading about places that have had hyperinflation, I have never heard mention of anybody having enough food more or less any "extra"...it simply did not exist...
    Prepare accordingly...

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  14. Another interesting post, Patrice.
    I agree the author of that website does not sound as if he put a great deal of thought into this idea.

    I live in the suburbs, but like Sarah, I find it incomprehensible to expect the rural folks to just provide for me and my family. I have made all the preparations my circumstances allow, and actually feel that my community would be the safest place to stay (barring a mass round-up of citizens by the government).

    Speaking of such things:
    If I may, I'd suggest a great movie that deals with the issue of survival.
    It's called "Defiance" with Daniel Craig.
    It tells the true story of the Bielski brothers--Polish Jews who fled into the Belarus forest to escape the Holocaust.
    While there, they encounter other refugees and decide to save them all.
    And not only that-they hear from some of the refugees about the Jews trapped in the Polish ghetto in Warsaw.
    Knowing these poor souls will be exterminated, the brothers sneak into the ghetto and convince many to escape with them into the forest.
    The Bielski brothers wound up saving over 1200 Jews...through terrible winters...over a period of years (4-5?)...all while being hunted by the Germans.
    It's an incredible tale.

    Might I add that one such refugee is a helpless academic who winds up becoming very important to the survival of the group. He convinces one of the brothers that people need more than food and shelter...they need community. He knows that their sanity depends on them feeling more human than animal.
    I think it is a hopeful story. And it gives one a lot to think about what survival really means.

    Though that was a small part in a long tale, it made an impression on me. So I have to say that maybe your actor friend wouldn't be such a useless addition after all.
    I understand you were making a point about practicality, but really, can't anyone with will and strong back work hard? Then what would you do to keep your sanity?
    Wouldn't a gifted theater actor be an antidote to the terror of living in a world turned upside-down? Yes, you have to take care of the body, but the imagination can kill you quicker than a lack of food if it isn't kept within sane boundaries.
    Something low-calorie to chew on. :)

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  15. I am "semi-rural", 20 acres on the edge of a very big city. I have plans for my family (Brothers, sisters, kids and grandkids) to come to my place. They know it, and help with the prepping. They build storage sheds and shops, help pay for improvements and bring supplies. Some do more than others.
    All in all, I expect 25 people would bed down on this property in the event of total collapse. We're pretty close to having all the plans ready. The gardens are pre-tilled and the fruit trees and bushes are producing. We need more livestock, and security ditches dug around the perimeter. (Something the county won't let us do just yet.) My semi-rural retreat is already promised away. City folk won't find room here.

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  16. charity begins at home...and there will be a "quarantine" sign on my door...

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  17. Absolutely love your blog-read it faithfully and have been encouraged and motivated to prepare and become self sustainable for whatever event necessitates it-small or big. Your points listed are excellent-especially ways to ingratiate? ourselves with those who may have better facilities or live in better locations. In those situations where we can't be part of the "process" ie: doing all the manual prep,etc., your idea to invest financially in projects/equipment is brillant! It would actually give you a vested position, so to speak and make you a value to the "community", a silent partner if you will. And in my case, alleviate the guilt associated with showing up empty-handed without having contributed much needed labor,etc. Of course, in a perfect world, my car would be filled to the brim with whatever I had accumulated but in an emergency "GOOD" scenario, I think I might be fleeing fast and unable to carry much. Ok-long enough comment but thank you for sharing your common sense and experience. I know you will be blessed:)
    just one of your many readers who has never left a comment,
    from Florida

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  18. Off the grid, self sufficient, rural, farm living is a LOT of work. It can wear a body down. It's rewarding in it's own ways, and soul-satisfying, but it can wear a body down. A lot of small stuff can go undone.
    If I'm living such a life, and a poor soul comes by seeking relief from his misery, I will offer him a hay bale in the barn to sleep on, and meals on the porch in return for fence repairs and weed pulling. If he's honest and clean, and proves himself useful, he can move into the tack shed for the winter.
    My farmer grandfather had a work-hand (employee in today's vernacular)during the Great Depression, who arrived hungry at his door, and stayed for 30 yrs. He earned his own little house on the property and a place in the family cemetery when he died. He became a family friend, welcome at their table for Christmas and gatherings and he became if not loved, at least well cared for.
    Keep your mind open. You never know who God will send to your door.

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  19. I don't see why a rural family would take in someone else gratis, but if the urban family paid for the rural family to prep. for them, that seems eminently sensible to me. The rural family would have extra money to pay for items too costly to buy on their own, and the urban family would have a place to flee to in case of disaster.

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  20. I live with my family in a small town in a rural area, the nearest 'real BIG city' of 25,000 is 3-hours of fast highway driving away from us. I can see 'the writing on the wall' when the 'city tourists' come out our way after TSHTF, kids w/out their cell phone-texting, adults w/nowhere to be at, the nearest shopping mall is another hour away from the nearest city. We've never had TV in my family, we have Internet & radio, and the newspaper for this 2-county area comes 3-days a week 'rain or shine'. The 'Culture Shock' alone to watch these displaced sheeple, will be worth the price of admission. But seriously, the distribution of; goods, knowledge, and services, will become a tipping point for our communities. Many have lived in urban settings with everything easily accessed, and no real-life skills to contribute. I lived for years in the Himalayas in India - as a Christian/Baptist Missionary in a small village across the border from Tibet. Life is hard, wherever you happen to be, and living in a 3rd-world setting opens your eyes to everyday survival. Even as a Christian Missionary, we couldn't help every poor/starving child we saw, we knew we had to make 'hard decisions' and had to draw the line somewhere to maintain ourselves on our team. For those living in relative ease & comfort [relatively speaking, the poverty-level in the U.S. is sometimes obscenely decadent to conditions I have experienced] residing in the BIG cities, will be a rude awakening when the machine fails. I don't look forward to/or envy the individual who has to tell someone NO-you can't stay here, you'll have to keep movin. We have to be realistic here, we preppers have spent our; time, and energy, and hard-earned wages, to take care of our own-plus, but we don't have the resources or the liabilities to take in those recepients of the 'nanny-state' handouts they have come to expect. The fact that I am a Christian, and a former Missionary, doesn't make me a pushover for a sob story in this coming future, I know what the Bible says and what is deemed neighborly, however the Bible IS VERY CLEAR AND LAYS DOWN THE LAW FOR APPROPRIATE TIMES. Society has methods for dealing with those unfortunates, its' called 'Tough Love' with the coming times it just might have to be Tough[Luck]Love-time!

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  21. I think that this kind of arrangement has potential benefits to both "sides", as long as expectations are made very clear and both parties are willing to make investments in time, money, and trust.

    Most posts up to this point have focused on the potential risks to the rural homesteader, and those points are valid. However, the urban dweller is also taking on risk...of a different sort.

    Suppose you live in the city and have an agreed upon "contract" with a homesteader. You've contributed to the homestead financially and (perhaps) through your labor on certain projects. You've placed survival supplies at the homestead in advance. You've honored your part of the deal.

    A severe crisis occurs, you pack up and flee the city, ending up at the homestead with a (previously agreed upon) number of family members. Except you don't get the reception you expect to get. Your "friend" the farmer has been inundated with relatives and mooching friends. He's conveniently "forgotten" about your contributions and about his obligations to you. Instead, he's decided it's in his best interest to keep your preps and let you, the "townie", starve. Not a lot of options for you at this point.

    People can act very "out of character" when they're scared. My point is simply that BOTH sides are taking a certain amount of risk with this kind of arrangement...

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  22. I would like to associate my name/identity with my site as well, because as you alluded to, when you do that you're putting yourself out there better and it seems more legitimate that you're sincerely trying to help people. I've opted not to identify myself publicly, but remaining anonymous presents its own challenges.

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  23. Timely. My wife and I have just been having one of those "Who would be in the island vs. off the island" sort of discussions. (It's our farm..)

    The extended family is the real kicker. Add in in-laws and it's a nightmare. It's one thing to invite 'bob' and his family into the group because of skills and attitude he brings, but what about his adult kids, and elderly parents etc.. Take this times the number of people you actually need to survive and you can easily end up with a small town. It's not a problem you can solve then and might very well break friendships now. No, we haven't solved it either, but it is a very important topic of discussion.

    Thanks.

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  24. The golden hordes will take what is found. Make no bones
    about it. Meat arrival on two legs will supply everyone with protein for at least 30 days. Real problem is water.
    Any source of good water is worth its value in gold.
    Try buying food stuff when none is available, maybe ten
    coins of gold will buy a meal. Look for the guy with two
    rifles and pistols on him/her self. Opsec be dam if i
    can find it , we will take it -- Murphy's law.
    Militia of Kalifornia heading east.

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  25. Interesting post and comments. The quotes of the need for biblical charity were very one sided. Seems I recall something about if you don't work you don't eat,.. those that don't provide for their own are worst than an infidel,... and what about the parable of the talents... or the parable of the five wise virgins being accepted and the five foolish virgins being locked out because they didn't prepare. As with all things there is a need for balance and applying the entire scripture. The Bielski brothers are also an interesting example. If I recall the book correctly they stole from Nazi sympathizers to feed their group even killing some. Even Corrie Ten Boom relates how they illicitly acquired ration coupons to feed their refuges. ...Not saying it was right, just noting what happened.

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  26. For Faithful Prepper:

    Proverbs 22:3 "A prudent man sees danger and takes refuge, but the simple keep going and suffer for it." NIV

    Although the Bible says not to WORRY about food and clothing, it doesn't say to ignore physical reality, either. Strangers in your home with unrestricted access to prep supplies is a potential danger to your family's survival!

    Be charitable all you want....but don't be so simple that you imagine there's no consequence for failure to see the danger!

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  27. Great article, and a good debate from everyone...the concept of storing extra, but Giving through some distance between ourselves and others in charity is an idea I've learned on survivalblog, and it makes sense. We are not being uncharitable in doing so, but we do much more good for others and our families by preserving our OPSEC until the time and opportunity for anonymous contribution to public order is available. Bear in mind, if you have studied and lived towards the day when your survival skills, medical skills, agricultural skills, etc. can be of greatest use to the greatest number in a post apocalyptic calamity, you and your knowledge will be lost, and carefully laid plans will be thrown out the window if it is a come one come all situation. Prudence and wisdom should never be wasted at the expense of being able to do more good for many more people once the initial tide of desperation and anarchy have passed, and the dust has settled.
    Remember the childhood tale of The Little Red Hen, and how she asked all the other animals to help prepare the bread from the ground, and they all had some excuse for not doing so until she had done it all herself, and the loaves were baked and they all came running. For those who will go to the ant and consider her ways, and store ahead for the winter and hard times, and for those who remember the parable of the wise and unwise virgins, (who came without oil in their lamps), I think the scripture is clear that we have an obligation, but one we should wisely consider before we open our stores to the world to be pillaged.
    Sometimes simply bearing witness as survival/prep sites such as these do is the best clarion call we can put out to those on the web, in our families, and in our communities. We can lead them to water, we can witness and serve, but we are never expected to do everything for everyone.
    Just a country guy's thoughts...

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  28. The parable out of Jesus' mouth talks about the five foolish virgins who were unprepared. They were not given oil, they were told to go and find their own and the five wise virgins were taken in because they had prepared. This is the principle that will have to be applied. There will be many foolish people who will expect us to share with them just because it would be the christian thing to do in their eyes and would likely try to guilt-trip us with their logic. I have someone who has contributed very little to our "future compound" and is already making comments about bringing everyone kin to them. We have totally outfitted our small farm with 2 hand wells, solar, wood heat, well worked gardens,lots and lots of beans, bullets and bandaids and if it all sinks tomorrow, we could make it. But the freeloaders will do us in. Thinking about giving them back their $300.00 worth and letting them feed them on their on! Make sure your partners are aware this is not Noah's Ark for all their kinfolk!

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  29. The web sitewouldn't be http://chadperson.com/recess/ The owner of this site tell the world where his bunker (in a town) is on the grounds no one will ever make it there see his http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ncgmbZ7s-LI
    This makes me think of the book The Death of Grass (aka No Blade of Grass) by John Christopher. If you have not read it spoiler comeing up (no big secrets in the book so its OK to read befor the book).
    In the book all grass, grains ect. die off. A farmer invites his brothers family to his farm. So brother and wife go to sons boarding school to pick the son up. Sons best friends family is in Hong Kong so they bring him along (I,m OK with that but them I,m to soft). Then they go to the gun shop (this is in England) and invite the shop assistant along if he gives them the guns and ammo. The shop assistant bring his girl friend along. So the invite is for 3 and its now 6. By the time they are at the farm they have invited every one the meet and about 40 turn up. There is no room on the farm for 40 only 4 (the farmer will let the Sons best friend in). The brother gets mad at this as he said every one could come in (and its not his farm).
    In hurricane katrina the same thing happend http://www.frfrogspad.com/disastr.htm - two families (they told other friends of theirs that they knew a place where they could hole up) had a invite and 30 people wanting free food and board.

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  30. Amen to your post. Been struggling with a similar issue myself and have taken several precautions fairly recently. Sucks that I have to, but my family comes first.

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  31. God also insists on practicality... that if any would not work, neither should he eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:10).

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  32. Hello Patrice and family
    Today at lunch at work, there was a discussion about hoarders....ya know people who like to "stock up". My coworkers couldn't believe how crazy some people are. I bit my lips for about 5 minutes before I blurted...." you know, there is nothing wrong with being prepared!" To which the responses were.." there is being prepared, then there is being crazy. Well, call me crazy!:) Although, not as prepared as I would like to be, but....more than SOME. Of course then I got the "Oh, well, we'll just come to your house..........I don't think so....

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