Rise of the Preppers

by | Dec 29, 2009 | Emergency Preparedness, The Survival Mom | 5 comments

Do you LOVE America?


    Gerald Celente has forecast that survival gardens and micro farms would be a popular trend that gets going in 2010. Preparation for emergencies and distasters, or ‘prepping’, as it’s come to be known, is another offshoot of this trend. And it’s starting to go main stream, as evidenced by Newsweek’s recent article Rise of the Preppers: America’s New Survivalists.

    Lisa Bedford, one of SHTF Plan’s contributors and founder of The Survival Mom blog, is featured in Newsweek’s article.

    Bedford is what you might call a modern-day survivalistor, as she describes it, a “prepper.” Far from the stereotype of survivalists past, she owns no camouflage, and she doesn’t believe that 2012 the final year of the Mayan calendar will be the end of the world. She likes modern luxuries (makeup, air conditioning, going out to eat), and she’s no doomsayer. But like the rest of us, Bedford watched as the housing bubble burst and the economy collapsed. She has friends who’ve lost their homes, jobs, and 401(k)s. She remembers Hurricane Katrina, and wonders how the government might respond to the next big disaster, or a global pandemic. And though she hopes for the best the last thing she wants is for something bad to happen she’s decided to prepare her family for the worst. “We never set out to go build a bunker to protect ourselves from nuclear fallout; I have no idea how to camp in the wild,” Bedford says, laughing. “But as all of this stuff started hitting closer to home, we [wanted] to take some steps to safeguard ourselves.”

    Finally, a mainstream media article discussing preppers as “normal” people and not some whacked out conspiracy theorists.

    “In fact, many preppers go out of their way to avoid the stereotypes that come along with the “survivalist” label they’ve made a clear-eyed calculation about the risks at hand and aren’t waiting around for anybody else to fix them. “I consider it more of a reaction than a movement,” says Tom Martin, a 32-year-old Idaho truck driver who is the founder of the American Preppers Network, which receives some 5,000 visitors to its Web site each day. “There are so many variables and potential disasters out there, being a prepper is just a reaction to that potential.”

    Preppers, by definition, are not just preparing for a TEOTWAWKI scenario, but rather, are prepared for any far-from-equlilibrium situation like a hurricane, earthquake, terror attack, chemical spill, evacuation, or other unforeseen event. Of course, prepping as a hobby may eventually lead to research and skills development to handle even the worst types of possibilities, including hyperinflationary collapse of our economic system, political instability and wide-spread civil unrest, all of which have the potential to lead to monetary collapse and food supply disruptions.

    It took three days for the federal government to get water to the Super Dome after Hurricane Katrina. In the two days leading up to the Hurricane Rita and Hurricane Ike evacuations of Houston, Texas, traffic out of the city along all main arteries was at a near standstill, turning a 3 1/2 hour drive from North Houston to Dallas into a 12 hour ordeal for those trying to get out. There was no food, no gas, and no water along the route. And this was an emergency in just a single major city. Had this been a regional evacuation, it is likely that the outcome would have been much, much worse.

    Don’t get us wrong, emergency responders like police, fire and medical teams do their very best in the situations described above, but when you’re dealing with millions of unprepared people whose only thought at the time is to survive and “get out,” the situation can detiorate quite rapidly. Preppers understand this, and have not just reserve food, water and fuel, but secondary and tertiary evacuation routes, multiple “bug-out” destinations where they can go if something happens, and are mentally, physically and psychologicaly prepared to handle the stress.

    If everyone prepared in advance of the unknown, it would likely be much easier for the entire population to make it through an event unscathed. Newsweek concludes:

    “Bedford knows it all might sound a little nuts and she’s careful about how much she reveals, and to whom. But she believes that in times of uncertainty, what she’s doing is simply common sense. As for the rest of us, isn’t it a little bit crazy not to prepare?”

    Here at SHTF Plan, we agree with The Survival Mom — it might all sound nuts. But, in an insane world the sane person would be viewed as insane. We like to think we’re the normal ones.

    Read the full Newsweek article…

    Some of our favorite featured web sites and resources in the Newsweek article:

    The Survival Mom Blog
    What is a Prepper Blog
    American Preppers Network

    Other Prepping Related Sites on the Web:

    When SHTF Forum
    Ready Nutrition

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      1. This is completely awesome coverage! I’m more like this family than a hardcore survivalist. I appreciate the depiction as informed, prudent people. Maybe “preping” will be the pop culture trend that the 2010s will be remembered for. Katrina was a wake up call that you can’t depend on the Government for help anymore. FEMA use to be a sterling organization, but now it’s hobbled within the DHS bureaucracy maze. I’ll share the link with some friends. Maybe it will spur them on to prep…at least they might not think of me as “crazy” anymore…well, not about prepping anyway. 😀

      2. I had a hard time convincing my wife about anything. We don’t live near water. We don’t have any nuke plants, missile silos, large cities or volcanos nearby. Our biggest disaster in a long time was 12 inches of rain in 8 hours. But, what I told her was: Imagine we couldn’t go to the store for 2 months and she got to thinking…

        Its only taken 6 months to get her to start thinking about how to make corn, wheat and rice palatable. I’ve gone from at least thinking about it to having about a month’s worth of normal food on the shelf at one point to having 3 months worth and much more if we go into TEOTWAWKI mode.

        People have always thought I was “crazy” about things, so, this is not different. I live my life different. No debt. I pay cash for cars. I keep all my cash at home and only use banks to service a checking account, carrying guns for safety, buying land in remote places.

        I don’t really care if they think I’m crazy. But, many are coming to me now and asking about my “strange” lifestyle.


      3. Yup , I am one as well .  BUT ! (Big But ) just remember , when SHTF , and the president declares martial law one of his edicts will be NO HOARDING ! and so we will become illegal because none of us who are prepping now is going to give our supplys away!….. in my opinion.

      4. Part of preparing is giving thoughtful consideration to hiding your “stash”.  This means keeping your mouth shut about your hobby. 

      5. RE: Prepping…  11/15/2010.  Latest seems to be the “Evil One” Obama wants to take your 401k to pay off other things.  We’ll.  Here’s my answer…MR. O.  The next 20 years…I’m not buying anything…I’m just keeping it to food and basics.  I hope this whole economy crashes.  Any funds I’m hiding from you in metals.  Even if you pass laws against owning them…I will NOT comply.  Folks this is the age of theives.  Forge dividends, forget interest.  Focus on keeping what you have.  Hide it in metals.  The big prep of the decade is silver!  This will preserve your wealth from the govt. thieves.  I only put the min. into 401k to get the match…I always new it sounded like a mob scheme.  Come on….think about it…you employer matches and you postpone taxes…it was all a setup and a big lie..just like social security is.  Get ready to live like a farm serf.  I just hope the people rise up and get their pitch forks and the military joins them.  Politicians and bankers…scum that they are.  Trust no one from here on out.  America is dead.  We no longer live in a free society.  I’m at the stage where I don’t care about my country any more…it was all just a lie.  Take care of yourself.  Hide your shit from the crooks.  ps.  Screw you Obama.  50 years ago you’d be cleaning the bathroom somewhere.  Think about that!

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