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What Do You Prep For: The Zombie Apocalypse: “Assume The Just In Time Infrastructure That Supplies Our Society Breaks Down”

Karl Denninger
March 28th, 2015
The Market Ticker
Comments (120)
Read by 14,066 people

This article was originally published by Karl Denninger at The Market Ticker.

just-in-timeIf you’ve not read the previous articles in this series you definitely want to before reading this article.

We’ve covered the common requirements for any sort of preparation (that’s you, primarily) and then personal and regional trouble.

Now we’ll get to where most so-called “preppers” spend their time, effort and money: The Zombie Invasion.

I’ll use zombies for any sort of large-scale (or worse) disaster you can conjure up.  Mass insurgency, an economic collapse that reaches (or initiates in) mass infrastructure disruption, the Yellowstone caldera blowing up, an EMP attack from North Korea, etc.  Pick one as they all wind up more-or-less in the same place.

Before we begin let’s cut the crap on probability: These events are extremely improbable.  You are far more likely to die in a car crash, drown in your own pool or even be hit by lightning than you are to have anything like this come to pass.  In terms of statistical odds you’re utterly nuts to prepare against any such event since the cost is (quite) high and the probability of any such event is vanishingly small.  In point of fact over the last couple hundred years no such event of this magnitude has happened, save during wartime where there is plenty of warning, in any modern nation.

Let’s take the relatively-common fear of an EMP strike of some sort.  These fears are, for the most part in my opinion, wildly misplaced.  The reason is quite-simple (and yes, I’ve run the math to back it up): induced current is not just a function of field strength it is also a function of the angle of incidence upon the conductor(s) in question and the length over which it impinges.

So for a given “orientation” of said pulse there will be conductors that are at a “good” angle (from a standpoint of inducing a current), a bad (nearly null) one and everything in between.  This in turn means that the “end of the world” sort of scenarios put forward are extremely unlikely.

Yes, there will be damage and quite possibly a lot of it.  But the common “everything goes dark” scenario is unlikely.

Electrical grid disruptions are not to be taken lightly; the risk of them is quite real.  It’s just that EMP is far down the list of likely causes because such an attack is both indiscriminate and unfocused with the likely damage pattern both disperse and random — yet the points of damage required to cause a serious disruption are neither random or indiscriminate.

So let’s assume that by whatever cause the just in time infrastructure that supplies our society breaks down.  Pick a cause; it doesn’t really much matter.

What happens?

First, energy production and distribution becomes severely impaired.  The opening assumption used to be that natural gas supplies would remain available as the pumping stations used to use the gas itself as fuel to run the pumps.  The EPA has largely put the kabash on that and as a result a large percentage of the pumping stations now are electrically driven.

Yes, they (like most other critical infrastructure) have backup generators.  That’s nice — until the fuel runs out, and if the refinery and distribution system is disrupted it will.  The same is true for water and sewer systems, both of which require electrical power to operate at a municipal level.

We’re talking pretty basic stuff here folks, and even if you have a septic system (you live outside an incorporated area with mandated sewer use) you probably have a water problem as most well systems are relatively deep and require quite a bit of power to run.  Without electricity your nice well is worthless too; municipal systems with water towers are only usable until the tower is empty without power to refill it.

Municipal systems also depend on chlorine delivery to make the water safe during the time it is in the tank and in transit to your tap through miles of pipe.  That chemical has to be delivered to the facility on a regular basis; it runs out, you see.  When it does the water in your tap is no longer guaranteed potable.

As with a personal or regional disaster if you’re reliant on some sort of “enhanced” capability provided by today’s technology (e.g. medical intervention) you’re in big trouble.  The only good news is that hospitals and similar facilities will be the priority points for whatever fuel remains in the distribution system, so their generators (assuming they continue to work) will be among the last to go down.  The bad news is that there will be an awful lot of people drawn to the nice bright light in said hospital when everything within 20 miles of you, that is, to the horizon in all directions, is dark!

So let’s think about this, shall we?

You have “prepared” for such a zombie apocalypse and have a generator and fuel to run it for…… how long?

You have a means of making sure you can get rid of your human waste and obtain potable water for…. how long?

You have food stored of some sort (by the way, have you actually tried eating it for a week or a month and thus know you can do so without gastrointestinal distress if necessary — and you find it palatable?) and thus can obtain sustenance for….. how long?

And finally, you are likely to be one in a hundred, or a thousand (if not worse) within a wide radius that did so.

The latter is a very big problem when the rest of the population has none of the above and discovers you do, because if anyone else can attack any of those points (e.g. your water supply, your waste disposal capacity, your food storage, your shelter’s integrity, etc) you are going to be forced into the open to repel that attack and defend the resource and when you do against any sort of superior numerical opposition the odds are you’re toast.

You can’t run a genset without everyone within a reasonable distance knowing it’s on, as you’ll be the noise source of the neighborhood.  Further, the first time you shoot (anything) everyone within a half-mile or more will know you did so.

If you’re in a suburban or urban area none of your effort is going to do you a bit of good, save one point: You’ll probably get more of them before they get you.  That’s a nice consolation but it won’t change the outcome.

In a rural area you have an even bigger problem, in that isolation is not your friend if and when you’re discovered.  You may think you are surrounded by like-minded people but you have no way to prove it, and that again is a bet your life sort of thing.  A handful of people who want what you have and can lob a couple of Molotov Cocktails at your roof from cover at a decent distance precluding you from shooting them (assuming you detect the impending attack) using extremely primitive machinery they can build from either a couple of bicycle inner tubes or common rubber tubing will force you out into the open and then you’re a sitting duck.

Don’t kid yourselves folks — unless you have managed to organize a material number of people prior to the event, you have jointly invested in a multi-layer perimeter defense environment (and are both trained and prepared to use it) and to an individual you’re prepared to do whatever is necessary on a preemptive basis to stop any sort of incursion or breach both physically and on an intelligence basis both prior to and during any such event you are almost-certainly going to wind up dead.

This does not mean that you shouldn’t bother trying, or shouldn’t prepare.  In particular personal preparation and improvement in your fitness and health are worth the benefits even though it is almost-certain that the zombies will never come — except in a movie.  You’ll be happier, healthier and more-prosperous — and that’s its own reward. Further, being prepared against the far more common scenarios is well worth it; in those cases you can have a real impact on the probability of success.

It does, however, means that the false bravado that is often on display among people in these groups is to be snickered at rather than emulated, as if such an event occurs the odds of the outcome being any different whether you do or don’t are simply not in your favor and any resource you expend in “preparing” for such a scenario has far better and more-productive use.


Karl Denninger is the author of Leverage: How Cheap Money Will Destroy the World in which he discusses the ill-use of leverage and how it is destroying the global economy, as well as where all of this will lead. The result is ugly: the value of everything—including gold—falls, and even personal safety is at risk in a world where there is limited money even for essentials like food and fuel.

Also By Karl Denninger:

All The Prepping In The World Is Immaterial If You Don’t Survive Long Enough For Your Supplies & Planning To Matter

What Do You Prep For: Common Personal Disasters

What Do You Prep For: Local / Regional Trouble

The Impending Catastrophe: “It’s Not Difficult To See This Coming”

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Author: Karl Denninger
Views: Read by 14,066 people
Date: March 28th, 2015
Website: http://market-ticker.org/

Copyright Information: This content has been contributed to SHTFplan by a third-party or has been republished with permission from the author. Please contact the author directly for republishing information.

120 Comments...

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  1. Paranoid says:

    This is real, IMHO the issue is when the Food stamp cards don’t work because the banking system of credit goes down. Then just in time fails and riots start.

      • javelin says:

        Before everyone starts agreeing with this psychological bull crap that this Karla Denninger wrote–re-read the initial premise and see that her base presumption of improbability is total BS-I’m calling BS……

        First, to call insurgencies that disrupt existing governments uncommon ( Bolsheviks? night of the knives in Germany? PolPot and Khamer Rouge ring any bells Karla?)
        –natural disasters that tear countries apart and devastate a nation as unlikely ( Haiti? Pompeii? Northern Japan Earthquake? Indonesian tsunami?),
        –energy shortages/embargos/disruptions as unheard of ( 50 million barrels a day to just keep America going, food travels thousands of miles,remember gas lines, gas rationing, odd/even fill up days? interconnected grids cascading from new England through Canada?)
        — financial ruin causing collapse of a dominant civilization as unprecedented ( ever heard of what the Visigoths did to Rome almost overnight karla?, of course there is Zimbabwe and the Weimar Republic in recent history; heck, in 1929 in New York they were building diving and soup lines up and down the nation’s city streets)How about we have a nation with 47 million people already unable to feed themselves and 150 million people needing government assistance to make their monthly ends meet–and you want to write an article and say, “Before we begin let’s cut the crap on probability: These events are extremely improbable. You are far more likely to die in a car crash, drown in your own pool or even be hit by lightning than you are to have anything like this come to pass. In terms of statistical odds you’re utterly nuts ….”

        I call BS..Karla, by reading your past writings it seems that you are just a wanna be Wall Street type but really you are just a lame “financial analyst” in your own mind……..

        • javelin says:

          While I’m on a roll I’m gonna address another ill conceived presumption I always see— and it is this…….

          Everyone who is a naysayer for those who live in rural areas, say 50 to 80 miles from a suburban city area-I believe they are wrong about the “golden horde” or giant gangs of city folks shambling into the country. Some points to consider–

          First: most people will hunker down-even in the cities ( especially if there is looting, burning, rioting raging on the streets/neighborhoods and stores.)

          Second: with disruption of services means no full tanks of gas to drive out into the country and ride up and down rural sideways looking for random houses that might have a pantry.

          Third: This also presumes that there would be open streets, bridges and highways to actually drive out of a congested city. Remember the Atlanta ice storm fiasco last winter anyone? After a few accidents on main highways, the other cars were stuck and just idled in traffic until they also were inoperable when they ran out of gas–the bottleneck of traffic became a full blown roadblock.

          Fourth: It would be several days before any “masses” could walk 40 to 50 miles outside of their cities–and most likely the small groups would avoid others if they could. There would not be a lot of banding together– no honor among thieves.

          I could go on and on but you get my drift–to presume an armed and organized gang of 30 or 40 men who are willing to die for each other are going to encircle my country home and engage in a prolonged siege or suicidal charge to get at my canned green beans and peaches ( which they don’t know I have anyhow) is ridiculous–it will more likely be as it is for our current burglars and thieves. If there is a large dog or two snarling in the window, they move to the next house or neighborhood where the pickings are easier..

          • Joe-no says:

            Yup. History shows cities implode. They don’t explode. There will be no “golden horde”

          • TheGuy says:

            I’ve seen places where two well placed dynamite charges would effectively block all entry and exit.

            In those places, the first city looters show up you as a concerned citizen just blow the roads.

          • durangokidd says:

            Karl won’t make it. He doesn’t have what it takes in the 21st Century: a 19th Century skill set.

            When SHTF, for real, no one is going anywhere. Be there to get there.

            Combat vets will survive. They have. Add some to your group; or join theirs. 🙂

        • lower40 says:

          NOTE to self :
          buy me a pair of rose colored glass like Karls

        • M. D. Creekmore says:

          History (thanks Jav) is full of examples of how things will evolve. Having the proper mindset is step one. Second, get you and yours prepared for worst case scenarios (thanks JW Rawles) and then start working with others in your community; rural over urban. Have a plan in place for your community and serve as a leader/resource when WROL occurs. If the author won’t empower you to work toward a solution, caving in to the madness is not surviving. Perhaps he should read more than he writes.

    • FreeSlave says:

      “If you’re in a suburban or urban area none of your effort is going to do you a bit of good, save one point: You’ll probably get more of them before they get you. That’s a nice consolation but it won’t change the outcome.”

      Well, you’re hoping that the mob disburses and won’t come back to take revenge for killing some of them.

      On a related note, what if you yell through a bullhorn, “I will blow up everything in this house, and y’all won’t get a damn thing if you penetrate too far. So just move along and find some other place to forage. Leave us alone!!”

      Enough to dissuade druggies and armed gang-bangers in the world of Mad Max?

      • OutWest says:

        If one cannot envision themselves marooned on a
        deserted island and survive, then there is little
        hope that one will survive a cultural breakdown
        in an apocalyptic event of disastrous proportion.

        • Anonymous says:

          “The Empire Crumbles”… Instead of the U.S. turning Russia and China into “vassal states” for the U.S., it appears we will becoming China’s new “vassal” state.

          Other countries are switching allegiance…turning from the U.S. (even after threatened!) and turning to China instead! (P.C. Roberts’ website). Yep! Other countries are going to the Chinese International Banks, and saying, “bye, bye!” to corrupt and useless IMF/WORLD BANKS (dominated by US).

          Unfortunately, when the corrupt and useless U.S. government can no longer dominate, control and loot other countries, it will focus on us– American citizens– as its new host to parasitize.

      • Mountain Trekker says:

        I think most on this site probably have some food and water stocked. and hopefully a method for purifying water, and in this respect I think moderation is of the most importance. Now for a Rosey Subject, unless you live in the heart of a big city or in a apartment complex, you may have a yard of some kind or a little land, so for sanitary purposes you really need to think about how to make a good old fashion outhouse. All thats needed is a shovel and a little something to fram up around the hole you dig. Trekker Out. Just A Thought!

        • Archivist says:

          I’ve got a two-seater built in 1931. All I need to do is dig a hole for it when it becomes necessary to use it. The old folks used to call it a “necessary room.”

        • White Fox says:

          I feel it’s important to memorize different ways to purify water, I do, even if you have to go back and reread it until you do. Because you may not be able to look it up in an emergency.

          Heat: Boil for 1 minute, or at least 5 minutes to be extra safe at altitudes above 1 mile though other sources say that just reaching the boiling point alone will do it.

          2% Iodine: 5 drops per liter and 10 if cloudy, wait 30 minutes. A liter is 33.8 fluid ounces, or two water bottles of 16.9 fluid ounces each. Iodine works better in warmer water.

          Bleach: Sodium Hypochlorite should be the only active ingredient, no fragrances or dyes or other ingredients. Forty drops to one gallon of clear water for 1%, eight drops if 4-6%, and four drops if 7-10%. Double if murky or cloudy. Wait 30 minutes. In liters, 10-2-1. 10 drops if 1%, 2 drops if 4-6%, 1 drop if 7-10%.

          Pool Shock: 1 Tsp of 78% granular Calcium Hypochlorite in 2 gallons of water. Don’t drink this. Add one part of this chlorine solution to 100 parts water (1:100). Wait 30 minutes.

          Sunlight: Using UV to kill microorganisms, use a clear plastic standard water bottle and filter the water first. Lay the bottle in direct sunlight for at least 6 hours, or up to a few days if cloudy.

          These methods are for biological contaminants, not chemically polluted water, and regular filtration will remove particulates.

          (EPA Emergency Disinfection of Drinking Water, Modern Survival Blog)

      • TEST says:

        This one from Denninger just doesn’t make sense. There are millions of homes/apts/condos on a large city. Are each one of them going to be attacked? And after a single house is attacked, there will be losses amongst the attackers, from accidents, friendly fire, etc. Not everyone is Mad Max – a lot of people will hang back, letting the more aggressive ones get shot. Yes, some homes will be looted. But I just don’t see this happening as Denninger envisages. Overall, I like Denninger a lot. His basic thesis is correct overall. But I don’t see this playing out at all like he thinks. Heck, after a single day without food, a lot of people will not be thinking or acting very assertively. I really thought this article was weak, compared to what he usually writes.

      • TPSnodgrass says:

        I do believe that the spectre of “golden hordes” is FAR over-blown. I witnessed first hand, in the Los Angeles Spring Festival in 1992, (Loot, Shoot and Scoot LA92) during the Rodney King Riots, that shooting at and/or actually hitting those attempting to loot or lob Molotov cocktails IS an effective deterrent to same behavior.
        While we cannot and should not “assume” anything at all, in a grid down, EBT and payment card failure, shooting suspects trying to fire bomb your location DOES indeed stop the rest of them from doing the same thing. After the fist night of the above riots, Koreatown in Los Angeles was widely avoided by those intent on burning, looting, pillaging, et al, to avoid getting themselves shot and killed.
        Yes, that DID in fact “change the outcome” in Koreatown, once law enforcement pulled out of that area and until the armed National Guardsmen came into Koreatown. The residents there had to take their own defensive actions to protect what was theirs. It did not take long for the thousands of looting scumbags to realize that fact either.
        Most looters by definition are lazy, good-for-nothing lowlife scum and won’t stray far from their home turf. They lack the initiative, ambition and means to do so. Going into unfamiliar territory without a firm grasp of who has WHAT methods to defend themselves, is asking to get killed.
        Let’s be realistic about how things are actually going to happen. While “Walking Dead” is a popular fictionalized television show with screenwriters determining every single outcome, real life, has no timeouts, no commercial breaks,and most importantly, no screenwriters. In real life, there are NO “do-overs” or second takes.

    • FuckingPissed says:

      I wouldn’t take this idiot author’s advice about anything. Don’t give up!

    • Dick says:

      Let them come, Kill them all, Let GOD sort them out. COME AN TAKE IT.

  2. falcon says:

    I’m going to keep on going

    • sixpack says:

      What I personally prep for, is a day when the rest of the world gets sick of being under NSA surveillance, and tired of being blackmailed and intimidated by the United States.

      One day, the chickens will come home to roost. They are learning about the deceit and treachery every day. They are already speaking out against it, and all the riot police in the world will not contain their wrath.

      I’m not afraid of the Russians, The Chinese or “communists”.

      I’m afraid of what lengths this usurped govt will go to, to maintain their iron fist on the world. THAT is what will get us killed.

  3. Kulafarmer says:

    I know we are screwed over here, EVERYTHING comes from somewhere else.
    On our island less than 20% of all food consumed is produced here, and those numbers are off. We produce NOTHING beyond that supposed 20% of fish, meats, and veggies, NO poultry, NO dairy, NO grains,,, it will be interesting,

    • Sharon says:

      Well, 20% of food is enough to keep 20% of you alive.

      And then there is always the Alferd Packer option (“have a friend for lunch”) which should support a few percentage points more till things return to some degree of normalcy.

      The point of preparation is to make sure you and your family are going to be in that 20+% that survives until then.

    • Rellik says:

      You live on the wrong island Bra.
      We have cattle, corn, dairy, pigs,
      goats, horses, et al. all close by.

      We just have to keep Hilo and Kona
      people away. With only one road and
      lots of bridges that should be easy to
      do.

      You are right, it will be interesting.
      Since nobody has guns in Hawaii.

      • Kulafarmer says:

        Close by we got resources, live near ranch land and goats are all around us, going to get a few more of my own, small time country folks like me get um,,, but the townies gonna be screwed,,,

      • Kulafarmer says:

        Rellik, i grew up Hamakua, Kukaiau Ranch, was a killer way to grow up, hunting all over the place, sheep hunting up at WH Greenwell ranch in kons was my favorite

        • Rellik says:

          Besides you, I’m probably the only one on this site that can pronounce and spell “Paauilo”. Aloha.

          • Babycatcher55 says:

            Just out of curiosity, is it Paw-ah-oo-ee-lo? We used to live in Honolulu. My great grandfather was stationed there in the early 1900s…he taught himself to play ukulele, and would sing love songs in Hawaiian to my ggmother…

            • Rellik says:

              Stationed in Paauilo?
              there must be some history I don’t
              know about.
              Pronunciation depends on who
              you talk to. I get away with
              “Pah-We-Lo”.
              Most people skip the
              double “ah ah” or say
              it so fast you don’t catch it.
              My hearing is shot so I miss the
              subtle intonations.

              Kulafarmer may correct me.

          • Kulafarmer says:

            Let alone know where it is!
            I miss the Big Island, have family that lives south point, my cousins both died but my uncle still lives there, when i was a kid at Kukaiau, the cane trucks were still hauling, that used to be wild, late at night, pouring rain, thick mud on the highways, good old days, miss em, some of my past life i could do without, but most of it was good stuff, staying at Keanakolu ranger station, or camping at Ruddles

            • Mountain Trekker says:

              Kula you bring back old memories, did they burn off those cane fields like they did in Puerto Rico. When I was a kid I lived in Ponce PR and I remember when me and a couple of my Puerto Rican buddies would find cane that fell off those trucks, we would chow down, now talk about some real candy. And it was free. Trekker Out.

              • Kulafarmer says:

                Yes they burned,, the road to our house went up through cane fields about 4 miles, we used to cut stalks and skin them and split them then chew on them when we were kids,, summertime fun!

  4. grandee says:

    CME don’t forget about CMEs

  5. Jim in Va. says:

    I may not last but somebody else will suffer greatly trying to take whats mine. depending on the situation(short term) I would help others. Long term I would probably not and I have the arms to protect what I have until I’m taken out. Hopefully the event will have petered out before it got to that point.

  6. PO'd Patriot says:

    How did the natives survive before the “the round eyes” showed up?

  7. Paranoid says:

    One issue I have posted before, without anyone commenting, is somewhere people need to look at the math. We seem to think of cowboys and Indians movies. There will be no significant number of huge battles or long lasting fights with millions of us involved. There will be no outside governments supplying stuff to keep the US going. Nobody has that much stuff, or the time to react. we are on our own.
    Second: Very few people age going anywhere. In a worst case issue most people won’t get 500 yards from where they live. You go to the large cities, lots of people, 1/2 in New York don’t even have a drivers license, much less a car. Look at New Orleans without 3 days notice. No buses, I have no Idea how many people we have in the US who couldn’t walk a mile if they had to.
    Third: Take 300 million people. They all start shooting, half win, down to 150 M they shoot, half win, 75 M, 40, 20 10, 5M. By the time everyone shoots 7 people there’s only 5 million left in the country. That includes kids and old people. Ridiculous.
    The whole issue of wondering hordes is unreal. Mobs don’t have discipline, especially the food stamp army. It’s everyone for themselves.
    IMHO this is a very complex system, if it fails, it ALL fails. Because of the huge logistical effort it requires to keep going. Drive any interstate and look at the trucks. Watch the railroads. Millions of tons of stuff an hour and it’s all used JUST IN TIME. It stops for even a day or two it cannot be restarted until it all winds down. Just as WWI had to continue after they mobilized because no one could figure out how to stop.
    On the other hand it’s all over very quickly, The huge cities burnout in hours to a few days. The next bunch; 250,000 up last a little longer but nobody that’s not somewhat ready lasts 6 months or past a winter. Then all of a sudden there is a lot more stuff than we need. The big grain bins are still full, we have more oil, gas coal than we need. Things will work out very quickly. The Gov won’t do anything, but hide, it cannot. How many truck drivers are going to deliver to downtown LA; and who is going to tell them what to deliver, and where to get it? Who pays?
    Remember this; most people in the cities have NO FOOD, they eat out every meal or buy ready to eat. Go to NYNY watch people who do cook, buy 2 eggs, 4 slices of bacon for breakfast and go cook it. If they had a bag of rice they wouldn’t know what to do with it. The Illegals are the only one who would and they won’t have a place to cook.

    • Guero says:

      Nature abhors a vacuum. Russia and China WILL invade if we disable ourselves.

      • Paranoid says:

        No they won’t: Lincoln said 150 years ago: “If we remain united not all the armies of all the world can by force of arms take a drink from the Ohio” Well I don’t care about the united part. If Warren AFB in Wyo says “NO” they still cannot. IF the American public gets into a war with the parasites when it’s over what’s left of us will be tougher than anyone can imagine. China sticks a finger in the US we eat it’s whole arm.

        • Dunjin says:

          Hah! Nicely done. Very good insight. Population won’t be quite cut in half every week but yes, spot on. The cities will be mostly piles of corpses, and the ones that do somewhat organize and make it out will be racial tribes. (I think we all know which ones) if its somewhat fall/winter the weather will take a huge chunk right off the bat. Once the main culling is over people will be a little more spread out. I’m looking to make it so I gotta be optimistic.

          • Paranoid says:

            One “minor issue” I hear the plan in WWII if we were invaded was to just lockup the jails and get out. That’s 2-3 million we can do without right away. And your tribe that gets out of the cities, if it’s winter will be easy to spot and won’t last long. To be truthful I don’t think many will come out. Why would they? As long as there are a lot of them they will live off each other. It’s only after they cannot survive off each other that they might come out. By then they won’t have a chance and besides city folk think the outlands have Indians and don’t like us.

        • durangokidd says:

          China will be too busy gobbling up Central Asia and Siberia to bother about North or South America. Any relationship between Russia and China will be toast when the SHTF.

          Can you say “Barbarossa”? 🙂

    • Plan twice, prep once says:

      Google the FEMA maps, notice the regional borders are along rivers, and natural boundaries. If the government blockades these bridges, no one is going anywhere.

      In New Orleans after the hurricane a small town sherif and a half dozen deputies with automatic weapons turned back thousands trying to get out of the city. He blocked the only road on or out that was above water.

      The movie “Escape from NY” comes to mind.

  8. PO'd Patriot says:

    I raise a large garden and I’ll have to watch it night and day during the growing season. Raiders will come. Victory Charlie Toothpicks will make a comeback.

  9. Ben Raines says:

    It is probably true that I stand a better chance of dying in a car crash, drowning, or getting hit by lightning than having to deal with an extended WROL period.

    That’s why I have life insurance, don’t swim alone, and get off the golf course when lightning is in the area.

    Just in case.

    • Four says:

      A true prepper will always wears two pairs of pants when out playing golf… Just in case they get a hole-in-one!

    • Rebel in Idaho says:

      Yes and it’s why we wear seatbelts, drive large vehicles (like my wife’s suburban), took swim lessons and practice regularly, and don’t play golf. Though I did go with my buddy once to a field and he hit drives and I tried to shoot them with my M1A, kinda like skeet shooting but with a golf ball.

  10. MommaD says:

    I tell people all the time to stock up because “one day the trucks could stop running”. Even sheeple understand that, I don’t go into a reason why they would stop, just that there may come a day they can’t run to Wally World for thier ” stuff”. Folks get that pretty easy and I’ve helped a few get started stocking up and a few to even start growing gardens. Just my two cents. Have a great day all!

  11. slingshot says:

    Good point Karl,

    You said,

    Don’t kid yourselves folks — unless you have managed to organize a material number of people prior to the event, you have jointly invested in a multi-layer perimeter defense environment (and are both trained and prepared to use it) and to an individual you’re prepared to do whatever is necessary on a preemptive basis to stop any sort of incursion or breach both physically and on an intelligence basis both prior to and during any such event you are almost-certainly going to wind up dead.
    ###############

    I have something special for intruders. Something that will make them say, “What the fuck was that?” A sliver of hope for survival when all seems lost.

    Think outside the box, people. There is plenty the average shitbird has never seen before. Yes it is legal and you can buy it in a store.

  12. Apocalypse timeline? says:

    After reading more articles about this stuff than I care to mention,in the last 5 years, we are almost there Here is my list of calamities that includes a biblical overview.

    1. “Rapture” catching away event that everyone says can’t happen or won’t happen, happens. Every born again Christian(Those who have repented of sins and made Jesus Lord and Savior)gone in a “Left Behind” movie like moment and people then figured out that it included their kids as well. Kids below a “God determined” age are innocents and would be taken to heaven as well.

    That would put the number of vanished well over 75 million in the USA. Feast of Trumpets is mid September of this year.Many biblical scripture to back this up. The video from this link may hold the key.

    2. Jonathan Cahn’s prediction regarding an economic collapse in mid September comes true and the dollar and stock market go up in smoke. People hit the streets and go nuts! Banks are closed and people get more pissed.
    “Mystery of the Shemitah,” that many laughed at, comes back in their face.

    3. A REAL RUNNING DEAD Zombie APOCALYPSE hits. These people turn to animalistic behaviors, tear their clothes off and will attack anyone,anywhere at anytime. They growl and bark and scream as they attack and destroy. They are extremely strong and fast and smart. They will be demon infused soldiers for the Antichrist. Order out of Chaos, this is the start of the chaos. Grid goes down, water supply stops and people freak out. People beg to be let into the camps for safety, food and water.

    4. Mega Asteroid as spoken of in Revelation hits the Atlantic ocean and a 400ft plus high tidal wave slams the coastal states. This Asteroid triggers all the weakend fault lines from coast to coast in the USA and 12.0 earthquake shakes the world.

    5. Loads of soldiers from everywhere here work their way through what is left of America.

    5. The often debunked Planet X shows its ugly big face and people look on in horror, it is huge and hot and full of fury,as it passes by, the earth is covered in a red ironite dust that turns water to a blood like substance as foretold in Isaiah, Revelation, Jeremiah and many more books.

    People run for their lives to any whole in the ground to escape it. A pole shift happens and a coronal mass ejection hits the earth and a 1/3rd of the earth is burned off(All Americas, north and south) as spoken of in Revelation

    7.On it goes- BIG WARS, FAMINES, PLAGUES, JIHADISTS and the list goes on.

    We could be 6 months or LESS from a scenario like this beginning to unfold on the EARTH. Understand that this is what Revelation is saying.

    This is start of the World Order that will shift its focus overseas when the Antichrist plans to rule and reign from the temple mount.

    Okay, everyone have a good weekend and get right with the Lord BEFORE the WRATH of God comes like a hammer for the unsuspecting world, time is short.

  13. TEST says:

    I like Karl, but this article was very, very weak. So, the threat of EMP is a non-issue? What about a CME from the sun? Moreover, other experts, such as Dr. Peter Pry – who has served on the Congressional EMP Commission, the Congressional Strategic Posture Commission, the House Armed Services Committee, and the CIA, and has some sort of certificate in nuclear design (I can’t recall the exact nature of the cert) would beg to disagree.

    At http://www.familysecuritymatters.org/publications/detail/understanding-north-korea-and-iran?f=must_reads#ixzz2MBnGqAqR or http://www.israelnationalnews.com/Articles/Article.aspx/12944 Pry discusses some of this. Another PJTV summary with Dr. Peter Pry of EMPActAmerica.org: http://beforeitsnews.com/global-unrest/2013/03/america-destroyed-with-a-single-bomb-2454058.html 7:40 min. Includes info on Iran test firing missiles from ships in the Caspian Sea. PJTV always does a great job. Maybe Pry and the others are wrong. Or maybe not. Still, as modicum of preparedness – if you think his summary credible – might be a good thing.
    Another similar 4 min. video on topic here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CdbEZe_94Lw&feature=player_embedded#t=201s or the Club K Russian weapons technology http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N6dKCkv1fzs (I don’t know if it exists or not)

    In 2011, the Director of the Defense Intelligence Agency, Lt. General Ronald Burgess, testified before the Senate Armed Services Committee that North Korea has weaponized its nuclear device into warheads for ballistic missiles. In 2009, European intelligence agencies headquartered in Brussels and supporting NATO concluded that North Korea has armed with nuclear warheads its Nodong missiles capable of striking Japan. The CIA’s top East Asia analyst publicly stated that North Korea had successfully miniaturized nuclear warheads for missile delivery in a 2008 interview. In fact, almost certainly, North Korea now possesses a highly advanced third generation nuclear warhead that could destroy the United States with a single blow.

    In 2004, the Russian generals told the EMP Commission that North Korea was getting help developing a Super-EMP nuclear weapon from contractors from Russia, China, Pakistan and elsewhere, and could probably test such a weapon “in a few years.” A few years later, in 2006, North Korea tested its mysterious “nuclear device” that produced an explosive yield of only several kilotons, and so was derided by the Western press as a failure–but hailed as a success by North Korea.Independently of the Congressional EMP Commission, South Korean military intelligence several times warned their government, in stories reported in South Korean press, that Russians are in North Korea helping them develop a Super-EMP nuclear warhead.”

    The Aussie http://au.ibtimes.com/us-confirms-north-koreas-nuclear-threat-issues-alert-after-isis-releases-names-100-military-1431787 says the N. Koreans DO have miniaturized nukes, incidentally.

    All this being said, there is some disagreement as to the liklihhood of a successful EMP attack that is required reading: http://www.thespacereview.com/article/1549/1
    by Yousaf M. Butt (sorry! His real name!) a staff scientist at the Center for Astrophysics at Harvard University, where he worked on NASA’s orbiting Chandra X-ray Observatory project from 1999–2004. He was a research fellow at the Union of Concerned Scientists’ Global Security Program from 2005–2007. He holds BSc degrees in physics and in mechanical engineering from MIT and a PhD in experimental nuclear astrophysics from Yale University, says an EMP from the rogue players is NOT technically possible – see http://www.thespacereview.com/article/1549/1

  14. JIT = Just Isn’t There.

    Plan accordingly.

  15. slingshot says:

    Went to gun show today and the prices are still high for .223 and 22 cal.

    Brought a couple of mags.

  16. TEST says:

    Your assumption about likelihood of various events is merely that – an assumption. As a matter of fact, we KNOW a CME will come over the next 100 years, whereas there is 0% I will drown in my backyard pool as I don’t have one.

    But otherwise, Karl… yes, we all know a generator is not worth a shilling after a few days, due to noise, no fuel, etc. This is not news to anyone. We are also aware of “eater’s fatigue” re. food, but trust me, when it comes to starving vs. fatigue… not a tough choice. And most of us have options other than just oatmeal for three meals a day. And shooting for food being heard miles away? Many of us have slingshots, cross bows, etc. for that reason; however, food storage will take one a long ways, and – assuming a worse case scenario, where 90% of the population is gone in a year – at that point, noise won’t be as serious of a problem.

    Next, we go to home security. Your points are again weak. People will band together for protection in large or small areas. Lone rangers, it is true, will have problems, but not everyone will go that route. Molotov cocktails? So, we are really going to sit our houses all day with no security details checking on things? And there are MILLIONS of homes in the US. Are they going to attack each one? And if bad water, bad food, medical, sanitation, etc is as bad as you say (and it will be), how many of these people survive food poisoning, typhoid, cholera, etc. the first few weeks – assuming they don’t kill each other first?

    Water? Yes, you have better have multiple layers of ways provide for yourself, including expedient filters. Medical? Yes, we all know we need to have medical preps, including books like Where There Is No Doctor and fish antibiotics, etc.

    The list goes on, but I won’t. I have ZERO bravado, and I certainly hope nothing bad happens. Some of the issues,like Yellowstone, I agree are better to worry about drowning in your non-existent backyard pool. Other issues, like a CME/EMP are – while debatable – certainly worth considering. Preparedness allows one to have a sense of that original American value Thoreau wrote about, SELF-RELIANCE, while at the same time knowing that one is prepared for a statistically remote (to what degree “remote” is, I don’t know)possibility ranging from EMP to pandemic to who knows what.

    I DO know that any preppers in Greece who may have been prepping for an EMP but instead got a financial meltdown are in a LOT better shape than their non-prepping brethren. That is, they prepped for (a) but instead got (b). However, much of what we prep for is applicable to a VERY WIDE range of eventualities. And therein lies the value of prepping. And if I never use any of my preps, I will be just as disappointed as if I never use my car, home or fire insurance.

    • Rebel in Idaho says:

      I agree with all of your posts today. I am really wondering what audience he thinks he’s talking to in this article. Though it kinda made me smile since we’ve already accounted for pretty much all of his objections. We live in an area of eastern Idaho that has a huge LDS population (as a percentage of the whole) and the very idea that less than 1 in 10 of my neighbors have a years worth of food stored is amusing.

      Matter of fact my southern neighbor and I were just discussing our hay situation for next year and whether what we currently have on hand will last his horses and my cows through the winter of 2016/spring 2017. We think so, but rain could be light this summer and the snow pack upriver was light this year. The river we live on will for sure provide drinking water for everyone for my kids whole lifetime and then some (unless an asteroid ends the earth) and it provides plenty of irrigation for the pastures and farms too.

      Cheer up and try to use articles like this as a planning tool. I consider his attempts to poke holes in my planning and then thoughtfully exam how my plans hold up and how they could be improved.

    • Sierra Dave says:

      Agreed. On the same page. Ditto.

  17. Milo Mindbender says:

    If you are prepped for a zombie outbreak everything else is chicken shit.
    I do not worry about zombies, as a flesh eating undead, but use them as a allegory for the human parasite De jour. No body gets upset if you snuff a zombie, but discussing self defense against people is frowned upon impolite Circles.

    • slingshot says:

      Milo Mindbender.

      Zombie. Good way to demonize people. Makes killing easier when the human factor is taken away.

      • TEST says:

        Non-violence should always be the first option for us all. Historic just war theory outlines limited occasions for times when violence is allowed. The real battle is one of education and information dissemination, which is where SHTF readers should be focused.

  18. Northern Reb says:

    Little chance for EMP’s (or CME’s)???
    Tell me why the nuke plant 30 miles away has prepared for them.
    Why the hospital’s in the area are looking into preparations if they happen.
    The U.S. government has prepared for them.
    Why have most preppers are preparing for them.
    I’m sorry but I believe this author has missed the mark big time on this article.
    Will they happen who really knows, but always be prepared for anything and everything. Be a good SCOUT,
    always be prepared!!!
    You have car insurance, house or renters insurance, health insurance, you can go insurance broke. So why not EMP insurance?????
    When those food stamps and those other get it free cards stop because of no power or fried electronic and the ATM’s and credit/debt cards stop LOOK-OUT!!!!
    You better have a good source of money (gold, silver, ECT…) or something to barter with.
    S.T.S.F.P. N.Reb

  19. slingshot says:

    Those who are on city sewer.

    Ever think of sewage intrusion into your home. Do you know where the port is to block it from coming into your home. Can’t call the Ghost Buster’s for that.

    • Northern Reb says:

      Slingshot:
      I was forced onto the city sewer by the EPA and IEPA, a couple years ago. And I don’t even live in the city or even the same county.
      I learned as much as I could for the people that installed it. One thing nice were I live we are 80 foot high than the city is, you know what rolls down hill!;-}
      S.T.S.F.P. N.Reb

  20. Sgt. Dale says:

    With what I have stock piled and the weapons and people to protect it. A group out of the Big City will find that if they come there won’t be very many left to leave the area.

    This is why I and my family and friends are working so very hard together.
    The soil is prepped for a large garden and the seed are ready to plant.
    The water is here and the purification equipment is at hand.
    The meds and the medical equipment is ready.
    The Ammo is ready and the mags are loaded.
    The booby traps and noise makers are ready to be set.

    Just try to get with in 300 yards of the place. No warning shots will be used. If you can see the signs my snipers can see you. You had better turn around.
    A.S.M.S.
    Sgt.
    P.S. Please bring a body bag!

  21. Northern Reb says:

    Genius:
    The capture idea will not work. How can you barter them as slaves when they don’t know how to work in the first place. LOL….
    Then if you can’t get rid of them you will have to pay someone to take them off your hands, or you’ll just have to feed them and teach them how to behave. You could take them for a one way trip into the country and drop them off in the middle of no were, but then that would mean you would be wasting gas.
    Just keeping it light!;-}
    S.T.S.F.P. N.Reb

  22. Kantstandya says:

    Yet another cheesey-baked mumble-fest by this Karl character.
    ( TEST did better without really even trying.)
    Why does Mac subject us to Karl’s crap? I think its to see if we are paying attention.
    I hope Mac isn’t paying for these blinding gems of wisdom…

    • buttcrackofdoom says:

      karl has written only two things i disagree with in the 7 or 8 years. i have read what he writes EVERY DAY, every WORD, on his blog market-tickerdotorg. this one, and his stand on fuuuckYOUshima….and when reading those two, i’m gonna take MY views with a grain of salt i gotta carry home in a wheelbarrow…karl’s the smartest patriot i know of, and if he says ANYTHING, i listen damn close to it. many on here ALREADY read his every word, and if you go to his website and read a few stories, you probly will TOO. no nonsense,….just SENSE!

  23. kuroiryu says:

    The author has overlooked a great many strategic factors that will have an impact on survival. Precipitating events, their time of year, and their casualty levels, will have a direct relationship to the magnitude of threat intervention that will be required. From a tactical perspective, defensive measures must be utilized that are proportionate to the magnitude of probable attack scenarios.

  24. solus lupus says:

    PEACE OF MIND = PRICELESS

    knowing i’ve got a walkin closet stocked with everything i need to survive for 3 months in the 1000 miles of wilderness which my town borders and i intend to bugout to when the shtf gives me a peace of mind worth every penny of the expense to stock it.

    knowing i’ve the equipment , ability , knowledge , skill and real life experience to actually do it is priceless.

    keep prepping , keep educating yourselves , keep the faith that you are all survivors and this too shall pass.

    “it can’t rain all the time!”

    * i encourage the woodsmen of the preppers here at shtfplan to learn about forest farming and dugout greenhouse gardening. within 6 months you can have your own 3 season hidden farm in the woods and none will be the wiser, except the forest animals which will become dinner after dispatched by a whisper quiet arrow or game snare.

    the earth(dirt) is your salvation.

  25. Boomshanker says:

    We sow the seed, God grows the seed, we eat the seed.

  26. Jim C. says:

    Denninger examined the extreme and left out the middle scenario: a situation, or duration of time for whatever reason, of 1 to 6 months where one and one’s family would have to be reliant on their own resources — society slowly recovering during that interval. This is an affordable prep over time and one that most families ought to have been working toward these last few years.

  27. Hout/cypress/Katy/shtf says:

    Yep, nustradamus..was right, man will become a canibal..experiencing my own shtf.. and the calapse haven’t hit yet, I must be more ready this time round. The more people prepare, the less trouble you will have with others, read Failure of civility, this is the best book ever written on shtf, and how to survive it. Get on and sign up shtf school..

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  29. RU Ready says:

    The challenge with all these short articles is that they ‘take a picture’ of a scenario, when in fact, the real challenge is to survive until the end of the movie. The movie begins with social unrest and shortages; then moves into murders, robberies, carjackings, etc; then looting of easy to hit places; then to home break-ins by smaller groups; and finally into chaos as production and distribution fail and larger gangs are formed to either attack or defend ‘their turf’. Some have questioned the concept of ‘large gangs’ but I can easily see them going house-to-house because that is where the last of the supplies will be. The more a house is defended the greater the chance something ‘good’ is inside. Once the easy houses are picked clean they will form larger groups to go after hardened houses. Untrained or not, you will be taking a lot of lead.

    • late2theParty says:

      Then force multipliers and buffer zones become even more important: AOE = best friend. Also, sleight of hand will help – honey pots and friendly fire zones will give be great numerical equalizers. We expect that fires will be major problems, and so there are plans for fire prevention and reduction. Also, offensive plans are NOT based on fire (double edged sword at best) but are focused on surprise, FUD and finally attrition.

      We feel that others will certainly add new and better wrinkles to what my partners and I know, and we are ready to help as can (minimizing our attack surface by showing only skills, not supplies.) Martial law or no, there are many non-modern devices that just can’t be fought very well by modern methods, especially if you aren’t prepared for that type of thinking. Sure, fire and kill zones will matter, but when the last thought some idiot has is “WTF is that?” You know your chances are much better than they think.

      And I agree with your timeline of single, group, then dug in, houses being attacked, but the problem here is time and health. How many gang bangers understand how to apply, or even know what a tourniquet is? How many understand don’t squat where you eat in relation to cleanliness and disease? Look at the idiots on that cruise ship that were (supposedly) squatting in the hallways…classic sheeple mentality. Holding out long enough leaves the owning group the strength to fight all the nastiness.

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