A Parable Of The Thanksgiving Turkey: He Never Saw It Coming: “A High-Impact, Hard-To-Predict Event”

by | Nov 24, 2016 | Headline News | 56 comments

Do you LOVE America?


    The Black Swan Theory is used by Nassim Nicholas Taleb to explain the existence and occurrence of high-impact, hard-to-predict, and rare events that are beyond the realm of normal expectations. One example often put forth by Taleb is the life and times of the Thanksgiving Turkey.

    The turkey spends the majority of its life enjoying daily feedings from a caring farmer. Weeks go by, and it’s the same thing day-in-day-out for the Turkey. Free food. Open range grazing. Good times all around.

    The thinking turkey may even surmise that the farmer has a vested interest in keeping the turkey alive. For the turkey, it is a symbiotic relationship. “The farmer feeds me and keeps me happy, and I keep the farmer happy,” says the turkey. “The farmer needs me, otherwise, why would he be taking care of me?”

    This goes on for a 1,000 days.

    Then, two days before Thanksgiving on Day 1,001, the farmer shows up again.

    But this time he doesn’t come bearing food, but rather, he’s wielding an ax.

    This is a black swan event — for the turkey.

    By definition, it is a high-impact, hard-to-predict, and rare event for the turkey, who not only never saw it coming, but never even contemplated the possibility that it could occur.

    For the farmer, on the other hand, this was not a black swan event. The farmer knew all along why he was feeding the turkey, and what the end result would be.

    The very nature of black swan events make them almost impossible to predict. The point of this parable is to put forth the idea that sometimes we are the Thanksgiving turkey and understanding this may make it easier to begin to, at the very least, contemplate the possibility of far-from-equilibrium events.

    This year, when you enjoy that drumstick or Turkey breast, give thanks to the latest victim of the black swan for being non-contemplative, otherwise, he may have bugged-out long ago and you’d be eating a chicken instead.

    Editor’s Note: We’d like to take this opportunity to thank every one of you for visiting our web site. Many of you have joined our community and often hang out in our comments area sharing your ideas with others, making new friends, and keeping us all abreast of developing news that we may not catch. It is you, the SHTFplan community, that has made this web site what it is today. In fact, without you, what we’ve achieved would simply not be possible. 

    Thank you for the many years of good times. I have personally met numerous folks directly via this web site that have become good friends – and not just online, but in real life! I hope others have had the same opportunity. For newer readers, this is a fantastic community. Sure, things might get a bit heated at times given the substance of the topics being posted, but all-in-all there are a lot of people here ready to share their knowledge, inspirations and friendship. It’s a great way to meet new friends who may have similar interests and beliefs, so if you’ve never posted please don’t be afraid to do so! 

    Thank you all! Have a wonderful and relaxing Thanksgiving Day!


    Mac Slavo


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      1. Happy Thanksgiving y’all

        Enjoy the blessing you have. 🙂

        Mac… thanks for the site.
        You and Tess are the best.

        • Thanks for the kind words Hillbilly!

          All the best on Thanksgiving!


        • Roast swan with giblet gravy… mmm, delicious!

      2. The government is the farmer. We are the turkeys.

        • As I prepare to give thanks for the bounty of blessings on this Thanksgiving Day, I reflected on a sign carried by some of the protesters.

          “LOVE TRUMPS HATE.”

          It’s a simple message. In fact it’s SO SIMPLE, I quickly realized that I had failed to see the forest for the trees. I had gotten the message all wrong. Once I opened my eyes and read with my heart, I saw the TRUE MESSAGE…

          Yes, LOVE DOES TRUMP HATE.

          I testify to you that our love for Heavenly Father, and His eternal love for us, will always trump hate. It is the unconditional love in the blood of Jesus Christ that redeems us…all of us. The love of humanity will bring us peace. Our love for this wonderful Country will bring us together. Our love for each other will make us whole and help us heal. LOVE WILL CONQUER HATE.

          So today I give thanks for receiving that simple message. As always, God tells us what He wants from us…WE JUST NEED TO OPEN OUR HEARTS AND HEAR IT.

          Have a wonderful Holiday Season everyone. The best is yet to come.

          • Biggest H8TERSE on the planet is the left….along with their radical violent gay Nazi Brownshirts

          • Trump is a pretty smart guy and as it appears, he’s got a bunch of smart folks around him. So I hope the new administration goes back to using the old economic formula’s to communicate the true state of this wreck of an economy. A good place to begin, I think, is the true unemployment numbers. This would go a long way in getting some of these “turkeys” to see how the present administration has been deceiving them, and just how bad. I still ain’t figured out how 94 million workin age people, out of work, equates to 4.9% unemployment. Then starting with “men” between the ages of 18 and 50 who are getting welfare, food stamps or any of the other gubmint freebies, they get cut off. I’m hoping that real changes start taking place. Time will tell.

          • Thanks sixpack–that is my greatest “thank you” today–thanks to God for loving us in spite of ourselves.

          • sixpack,

            Thank you for sharing. We had a wonderful Louisiana Thanksgiving family gathering. My cousin deep fried 10 Turkeys and most of them were given to folks who would really appreciate it. I got to carve three of them for the family gathering. We all brought our specialty dishes, merleton crab/shrimp casserole, green bean casserole, praline crusted sweetpotato casserole, oyster stuffing, fresh cranberry relish, tomato salad, fruit salad, yeast rolls, and more. We are making Thanksgiving great again! We send you and all who read this our best and warmest wishes for Happy Holidays! He is the Reason for the Season!

            Tess and Mac, Thank you for putting up with us all these years. May God bless you and we send our b st and warmest wishes to you and all the (extended) family.

            Louisiana Eagle

        • When the president pardons the turkey every year …. EBT cardholders breathe a sigh of relief.

      3. I sure wish the sheeple would read this.. Preaching to the choir here.

        • Never hurts to be reminded.

        • Menzo, Mac puts out this article every Thanksgiving and it’s a damn good reminder of what we all face. Like another poster said, “The government is the farmer and we are the turkeys.” My point is that there’s ways for the turkeys to defeat the farmer. Needless to say I got stuffed today. BRRRRRRRRRRRRP! LOL!

          • Turkey Lives Matter!

            • Howdy, SmokieOkie. Deplorables Lives Matter!

      4. Poor devils certainly do taste good. That’s the true moral of the parable.

        Carnivores rule.

        • Right on smokey we are not vegetarians, we eat vegetarians LOL
          I hope to cause a black swan event for the deer I have been feeding all year

          Happy thanksgiving all

      5. A worthy annual parable!

      6. Darn, now I’m going to dream of Soros as a farmer and that I’m a turkey.

        It’s OK. When I awaken, I’ll check our preps and know that Soros will be a cooked goose if he tries to harvest this turkey.

      7. Speaking of Turkeys, The Bankrupt Commie State of Illinois is stiffing vendors who provide services to the State. They are delaying payments to the vendors or just not paying them at all. Its across the board from Health Care for State Employees who’s bills are not getting paid for services rendered, to Gasoline to put in State Troopers cars that are not being paid. And why is Illinois doing this? More kick the can down the road. And why State Property Owners will get hosed more in Massive Property Taxes, and fees, Fines, permitting costs, you name it. And WHO IS GOING TO GET HOSED THE MOST? THOSE WITH IL STATE PENSIONS.

        Illinois Stiffing Vendors To Fund Budget Deficits –
        11-24-2016 • zerohedge.com by Tyler Durden

        Well, this is exactly the game that the state of Illinois seems to be playing right now to cover its budget shortfalls. As we just pointed out a couple of days ago (see “Illinois Pension Funding Ratio Sinks To 37.6% As Unfunded Liabilities Surge To $130 Billion”), with a $130BN pension underfunding and minimum annual contributions of $10BN, it’s no surprise that Illinois needs every dollar they can squeeze out of vendors.

        Read the story here: ht tp://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-11-23/illinois-stiffing-vendors-fund-budget-deficits-its-financial-time-bomb

      8. The turkey was beaten in the election!

        • Hang on there Jim!!!
          they announced that they are going to have a recount in Michigan,Wisconsin and Pennsylvania because they(the socialist) think that the election numbers were wrong.Since they have had plenty of time to make up some more fake vote ballots i expect them to come out and say that Hillary is the real winner of the election. This would start the revolution that Soros and the other globalist would want.
          My son says i am being overly dramatic but i know what depths these slime balls will go to keep power. I hope i am wrong but i always think about the scenarios that could develop so i can take the appropriate measures. BTW my son refers to me as Dr. Doom and Gloom hahahahaha i do agree that the turkey was beaten like you stated

      9. The Thanksgiving turkey’s genes have been modified by man who conditions the turkey to accept this fate. Try attacking a wild turkey with an axe and you will settle for chicken too. Even squirrels are intelligent enough to store food. They don’t know why, they just do it. Some things should never need to be defended. Progressive thinking modifies us from the native into the Thanksgiving turkey. All “elite globalist” farmers know this.

        • And they are still trying to “Farm” us.

        • I watched an old tom turkey go round and round with a coyote once… the coyote ended up leaving, bleeding badly. You have a valid point.

          Let’s agree to be free range people and we may have a chance after all… 🙂

      10. Thanks Mac:

        I’ld also like to thank the many people who contribute. A special thanks to THEM GUYS, whose posts helped me to understand and clarify a difficult subject. Thanks to Dr. David Duke for running when so many could barely walk. To all my white Christian Europeans who suffer from discrimination and hatered, who have been beaten physically or psychologically. For the parents and grandparents of white children who have succumbed in the undeclared war against them; the drug addicts, the vaccine damaged, the Cancered poisoned GMO food and pesticides sick and sickly depressed pharmaceutically destroyed people’s of America and elsewhere: you who fight the madness, who challenge those we trusted and betrayed us; to all you warriors for freedom, liberty, and justice: THANK YOU.

        Never give up !!!


      11. I can tell you all this much, it looks like the collapse may have been cancelled, and we will know for certain after inauguration.. I am just telling you what the scientist told me. He told me that climate changes, as in the planet acting up is what has his sources more concerned about that war, because his sources are moving away and going outside of cities to leave and never return permanently.. he keeps telling me that the environment is what’s the greatest threat, first it causes a grid collapse, the wars globally start only to stop follows by environmental destruction starting with LA, the fault line, then Yellowstone, then its caos in the streets, shtf hits. So he is telling us to keep prepping that this is not something that Donald Trump can stop, he is just the make feel good porn while the elites prepare for shtf. Wesley Rawles just talked to Alex about it and he is saying the same thing that my friend is telling us..anyone with bug out locations will literally be needing them next year sometime..Nibiru has something to do with the change because it will cause winds of up to 400 mph all over the continental US and other countries, 90% of us will not survive it…so I am still getting ready.. a lot of people are happier since Trump won, and so am I, and they are spending money, and having a good time but I have not relaxed one bit. A the win has affected my business in a pot I’ve way, and it just means more money and less stress, but I have not changed my ways because I am too fucking smart to let my guard down.



        • HCKS, I wouldn’t bet the farm on the collapse being cancelled. I believe the collapse will still happen and nobody can stop it. natural disasters could take place in conjunction with it. I’m still stacking and keeping all my options all the table. there’s still every chance I’ll have to bugout some time later. That’s why I’m on the net every day to keep tabs on everything.

          • Brave, those who understood what’s trully going on, have moved to Southern hemisphere.
            Trump can’t change anything.

            • Bobane, I also understand but I’m not leaving my country, my home. I can be back at my BOL in just a few hours whenever the occasion calls for it. No one can stop what’s coming but I’ll do my best to survive it.

              • Brave & HCKS
                ‘Hands down’ would be the dumbest thing to do for the next few days.
                The smart thing to do would be to celebrate the Thanksgiving Sunday inside of your BOL and then, stay there for at least two more days.
                The fire-crackers-day is that close…

                • umm, I think Thanksgiving falls on a Thursday, not Sunday.
                  You once stated we all must move to Asia.
                  Now it’s the Southern Hemisphere?
                  Is Tierra del Fuego OK?

      12. We’re still here!

        Happy Thanksgiving.

        • Are we anon?Are we really?!

          Perhaps we are all just a bunch of 1’s and 0’s aka matrix ect.

          Hows that thought for a little holiday cheer?!

          • WD

            Yes we are the 1’s and 0’s that make up the virus that brings the matrix down and reality is reasserted.

      13. Exactly why we need to ensure that turkeys never get covered by the 2nd Amendment. ‘Axe-free’ zones for them just never pan out (bad pun)for them right. Thank goodness.

        Thank you SHTFplan and I hope your Thanksgiving was full of joy, family and……. clueless turkeys.

      14. Thank you and God bless you and your family!!

      15. 1Thessalonians 5:18
        In every thing give thanks:
        for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

        have a Blessed Thanksgiving Day (every day)


        • Good reminder, Grendee. Thanks

      16. .Uh… I’m a socialist and I don’t get the story above about the turkeys. You mean the powers that be really, really don’t care for me? Butt then again, I am a socialist, so I am really not that bright

      17. Seth Rich murder videos being investigated

        If interested, re. the Seth Rich (who was in charge of voter expansion data for the DNC, and widely suspected of providing Wikileaks with incriminated info) murder. No, I don’t think Hilary is going out at night and doing this, but the number of strange deaths surrounding the Clintons is absolutely staggering…

        “…Rich was one of many close to the Democrat Party and Hillary Clinton who lost his life during this election season. Five people tied to both died in a matter of six weeks under suspicious circumstances. In addition to Rich, the other names were as follows:
        • Shawn Lucas
        • John Ashe
        • Joe Montano
        • Victor Thorn

        The list of dead people around the Clintons is quite long and you have to admit that these deaths happening so close together should give you pause as to the official story that is coming out about each one, knowing Mrs. Clinton’s record for lying, deceit and endangering the lives of Americans.”


      18. Well,happy bird day to Mac and all here!

        I rather the parable of the sheep,they wake up and get it,at least some of them!How about putting that bad boy on top of sheeple again?!

      19. I am no Turkey and will not go quietly!!

        I want to offer my thanks to this site and others like it. And, all the great people that post comments. I have been reading the articles but more importantly the comments. and only recently started to post my own comments. I share the same thoughts and ideas as so many of you do.
        I became “aware” about 4 years ago and got into the prepping lifestyle, best thing I have done since joining the Military way back when.
        I have since Prepped for the long haul, food, shelter and yes,,, locked, loaded and reaffirmed my oath to the constitution.
        Although I am prepping for SHTF, I am also so much more comfortable and confident in my ability to survive. Of course if I take one that puts me down,,, well no more worries. Win Win as far as I am concerned.
        I will stand shoulder to shoulder with like minded people and pull my weight, I will not stop believing in this country, our values and my belief in a Supreme Being!
        If the farmer comes looking for me or others with the same mind set,, well, I pity the fool!!
        We have so much to be thankful for the list would go on forever.
        I wish you all the best and hope and pray for your health, happiness and wisdom to continue!!
        Thank you!

      20. Happy Thanksgiving, everybody!

        And thanks to MAC for all he does here so we can ALL work together to slow down ‘the machine’!

        One, this election WAS a black swan event for the Democrats– looks like they were the only ones who bought the constant lies of lamestream media and the rigged polls.

        Two, this election was made possible by God the Father BECAUSE of the NUMEROUS sacrifices and countless prayers and Rosaries prayed by too many to count.

        Keep preppin’ and please keep PRAYING because while YOU and I rest, evil NEVER rests. This country (you and me included) has LOTS of work to do in so many ways.

        God bless you all.

        – the Lone Ranger

        • “Two, this election was made possible by God the Father BECAUSE of the NUMEROUS sacrifices and countless prayers and Rosaries prayed by too many to count.”

          If only that were true.
          You, nor I, can ask God for favors.
          The election happened the way it did because of the voters. Period.

          “Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss.”
          Every time we turn to God for something, expecting to get something from God, we pray amiss.
          No one has to tell God to make the grass green, or the roses red; no one has to tell God when to make the stars shine or when to change the tides.
          Shall we, then, presume to tell God that we are in need of anything?”
          “We fail if we attempt to gain any thing separate and apart from God.”

          Just a few words of wisdom from Joel S. Goldsmith, “The Art of Meditation”, 1956.
          In case the word ‘meditation’ puts you off, rest assured the writer was as American as apple pie.
          Probably the last truly illumined man on Earth.

          • correction, You, nor I CANNOT ask God for favors.

      21. Been on the road it is nice to drive for pleasure and not need miles for work. The high tension that we felt is now what the other side is feeling and they can’t handle the situation. I am not saying that we need to hold their hand’s but we all know what that stress can do. I will listen to them while I am stacking and packing Happy Thanksgiving to all.

      22. Mac, God bless you and yours! love the site! Love the posters! Even the trolls,, (they help me confirm my views)! But the biggest blessing I get from SHTFPLAN is the knowing that I’m not alone, there are lots of patriots in this great country of ours who can see through the BS that is shoveled at us by the lame stream media! Keep stacking, keep praying and God bless America!

      23. We all may find out soon that we were turkeys all along. Eat drink and be Merry……it won’t last.!!!!

      24. we are all HERE…to pick apart each others plans, so we can keep constantly improving them….many THANKS to all that CONTRIBUTE to shtfplan(not ALL of you, just the ones that CONTRIBUTE….you KNOW who you are!).

      25. We just had a small earthquake on the New Madrid Fault. Its epicenter was down in the Boot Heel. Not vey big a quake. It could be nothing or a percussor of bigger things to come. If Its gotta let go I hope it waits until Obummmer is gone and Trump is in charge. We had turkey and fixings with all the children & grandchildren today. Its was a good time. I mostly played with the smaller grandchildren. Its amazing how much smarter those three year old are compared to children there age back in my day.

      26. Hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. We did here too with the forest fires winding down because we got a little rain yesterday. God is good! I cooked, and we had pork loin, mashed potatoes and mixed veg, with banana pudding for dessert. There’s just the three of us. 🙂 it was peaceful and quiet, with the exception of a couple neighbor’s who were practicing their AR skills. I love our neighborhood. I feel safe. 🙂 y’all have a blessed week, and keep stacking and praying.

      27. Now I know why sheeple never stick their necks out for anyone. You never know when someone is running around with an axe!

      28. I am going to say that yesterday was a real good day.
        Not only at my place but right here at SHTF.

        The site had never been so calm. Had to be the food. ;0)

      29. “A hard to predict event”:

        Lessee…. according to Dr. Lawrence Kotlikoff, Boston Univ. and who served in the Treasury under Reagan, TOTAL (if you include ALL unfunded liabilities) in the US is now $222 trillion last I looked. USA Today a few years ago published $72 trillion. Whatever

        Is the outcome of this hard to predict?

        There are only three possible ways to pay this off, barring 10% growth/yr: Print money, raise taxes, or cut services (somebody here also mentioned default once, but I would subsume that under printing money. And yes, they will combine, but tend towards one as primary. And if they raise taxes, they kill compliance. Historically, they only get so much blood out of the goose no matter how high taxes go).

      30. Fascism is a farmer making the decision to behead a turkey with an ax for Thanksgiving.
        Liberty is a turkey with an AR15 suggesting that the farmer please reconsider his decision.

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