Ridding Yourself of “Normalcy Bias:” Why We Should Take the Warning Signs Seriously

by | Jul 27, 2018 | Headline News | 66 comments

Do you LOVE America?


    This report was originally published by Ethan Huff at NaturalNews.com

    No matter where you live in the world, it’s important to remember that disaster can strike at any time. Whether it’s earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, or wildfires, there’s always something that can make life difficult in an instant – and most people, sad to say, aren’t prepared for the worst because they don’t believe that it could ever happen to them.

    Even in areas with warning systems in place to sound the alarm about incoming threats, many people simply ignore them and continue about their lives as if everything is perfectly normal. It’s a phenomenon known as “normalcy bias,” and it plagues the modern age. Many people have gotten so used to business as usual, or “the boy who cried wolf” scenarios, that they’re simply numb to the thought that things might one day go south.

    One example of this are the tornado sirens that exist throughout much of the Midwest. These devices are programmed to blast whenever a tornado forms somewhere in the area, typically letting out a long, loud tone that notifies everyone who can hear it to take shelter immediately – preferably in an underground space such as a basement that doesn’t have any windows.

    It used to be that most people took these tornado sirens seriously – but that isn’t necessarily the case anymore. “Salty” from Beans, Bullets, Bandages & You tells the story of how, at least in his area, security footage during a recent tornado siren event revealed that many people ignored it as they continued to drive around town, apparently aloof to the threat of impending doom.

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    He points to normalcy bias as the cause – the false belief that bad things basically always happen to someone else, and never to oneself. Unless someone has personally experienced the horrors of having his or her house blown away, or had a loved one die, during a tornado, then it’s a lot harder to accept that reality when the threat actually presents itself for real.

    “Basically, it makes people underestimate the risks and the likelihood of bad things happening to them in a disaster,” Salty writes. “This belief that they are safe (when in fact they are obviously facing danger) may keep people from either preparing for the disaster in the first place, or reacting quickly when disaster is upon them.”

    Reject normalcy bias and GET PREPARED

    While ignoring tornado sirens is just one example of normalcy bias in action, it’s illustrative of how such a mindset can play out in many other areas. Failing to store up non-perishable food for an emergency situation is another example of normalcy bias – those who assume that there will always be food on grocery store shelves, failing to recognize the vulnerabilities inherent to the “just-in-time” delivery systems that keep our refrigerators stocked.

    Normalcy bias is also present in the political process, with many non-voters (and even some voters) embracing the mindset that it’s really not all that important to get involved civically because nothing that happens will ever affect them.

    The only reason that anything gets done at all is because some people are spending their time and energy advocating for it. Those who aren’t involved politically simply reap the benefits of other people’s efforts, as they inadvertently take advantage of normalcy bias with regards to the perpetuation of their freedoms and liberties.

    Sure, there’s only so much that can be done at the political level to invoke change regardless, which is why many people are cynical of the process. But when it comes to preparedness and survival, there’s a whole lot that you as an individual can do to protect yourself and your family – even if the rest of the “herd” isn’t taking it all seriously.

    Sources include:




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      1. Nothing’s gonna happen. Nothing ever does. Tomorrow always comes. The government will take care of everything. Wrong. Normalcy bias kills, on a daily basis. You’re walking down the street, on the way to work, like every other day. Two nasty looking dudes are walking in your direction. You have to get to work so you keep walking until they’re right next to you. And Wham! You got your jaw jacked and they made off with your stuff. Nobody helped you up off the ground. Hey, the other people had to get to work too. Normalcy bias. Kinda sucks.

        • I’m not worried, nobody has accused me of being normal for years. But this is getting to be boring.

          • I am the only normal person. Everyone else is weird.

            • Maxine Waters is a lipstick wearing turd.

              • bb:

                It is that culturally appropriated straight hair that really gets me. She still thinks she is Laura Petrie.

                She is the face of change…..


                Be safe……ride ’em in……BA.

        • I thought about this subject the other day when I heard about the people drownding in the lake in Branson while riding in the Duck. I heard they asked the driver if they should put the life vests on and he said No. All was well. I guess he thought all would be ok. I am sure he is a good and nice guy. We simply need to think for ourselves.
          I fear rough waters ahead.
          Take care…

      2. Normalcy bias is an expected default for those that have never been significantly personally effected by events outside of those within their life circle. That encompasses the majority of the people in the US. Great tragedy by design or luck has been largely avoided by the masses. Things only happen to people, “over there”. In their minds the “magic of America” somehow holds the worst as bay.

        • Kevin I realize that there are many on this site that belittle God, but He has truly blessed America. America has a major tragedy and 50 or so die, or maybe even a few hundred, and in many other non-Christian countries when they have a tragedy thousands or even tens of thousands perish. Luck! I don’t think so. The day will come when God removes His protective hand from America, we legalized the murder of innocent babies, we legalize drugs and government sanction of gambling and the marriage of Queers and crime is so rampant that we don’t even have the room or the money to lockup criminals, we just give them probation or a fine. Normalcy at this rate can and will come to an end. Trekker Out.

          • Mountain Trekker

            ” crime is so rampant that we don’t even have the room or the money to lockup criminals”

            Actually violent crime is roughly half of what it was in 1990.

            h ttp://www.disastercenter.com/crime/uscrime.htm

          • My wife’s Uncle, ultra religious, believes the US has lost wars because it turned away from God. I attempted to explain to him that the US got involved in wars because it turned away from God. The “Onward Christian Soldiers”, blindly believing that the US represents goodness in foreign affairs was too embedded in him for it to register.

      3. I take the stairs when I could ride the elevator. I bust wood by hand rather than use a machine. I work on our vehicles myself. I till the ground behind a tiller rather than use a tractor. I’ve got muscles on top of muscles and I’m 50. I don’t use dope or drink or smoke. Already used to somewhat hard and I’ve seen war before. Some people probably think I’m crazy and they may be correct, jury is still out. Threats to my family will not be tolerated no matter the source.

        • And your live healthy and long too.

        • The democrats can threaten us.. They are allowed to do anything because the oath takers and citizens let them

          • My cartridge casings won’t have fingerprints.

            • Menzo:

              My normalcy bias extends to guns and hookers: I spend the money for them to work as intended.


              Steady…………SHOCK the monkey….BA.

        • Good for you! I’m 69 and retired, and I just finished upgrading a bathroom, changing bathtub, toilet, vanity cabinet/sink, laying floor tiles, shower tiles… the works, and I did it all by myself (have to admit, removing the old bathtub by myself was a b-tch)
          Like you, I’ve been shot at, and the doors and windows of my house are not intended to protect me and my family from potential intruders, but to protect potential intruders from me!

      4. In my original post on Beans, Bullets, Bandages & You I tell the story about checking out security cameras after the storm had past, it was crazy, there was more neighborhood traffic than normal, people apparently just driving around in the pounding rain. The tornado hit a mile north of where I live, it took the roof off of a house, blew away a machine shed and two grain bins, and knocked down 6 utility poles (it was just north of town). That’s how close this was, yet there were people entirely ignoring the heavy wind, heavy rain, small hail and the siren blasts.

        Crazy to see normalcy bias so blatantly in evidence.

        • Salty, welcome aboard. I’ll have to check out your site. What you just described were definitely morons. I would say that normalcy bias=retardation.

      5. Too bad if you listened to all the doom and gloom for the last nine years. I did, too. I lost a lot of money following the advice of goldbugs and not investing in the market. My wife made 60k by not listening.

        While I have hundreds of jars of home canned food, a gravity flow water system, wood and coal furnace and cookstove, a small grid tie solar system, PMs, and plenty of other survival goodies, I squandered a few good opportunities following the doomsayers.

        I think I will probably pass on before I use my preps.
        I’m working on using them up now. The S will HTF sooner or later…but it seems to be dragging it’s feet. A good thing.

        • JRS

          I got out of the market Feb 2007 and only dabbled in and out with less than 10% of my holdings since losing lots of money. The “ignorant”, too dumb to know better stayed in and at least doubled their net worth. In fairness the market did not rise for the tried and true sales and profit but rather QE back feeding liquidity falsely pumping it up. My loaded broker brother in law said “they won’t let that happen” oblivious and disbelieving of the existence of TPTB. The fact is they made 1 + 1 = 3.

          • “since losing lots of money”

            Clarify, I didn’t make any since 2007.

            • “…I didn’t make any since 2007.”

              Pretty much the same for me…

              • Oh, plenty of folks are going to wake up to empty accounts and pensions where they will be lucky to get .50 on the dollar and most will get .10 on the dollar.

                There is also the hidden tax of inflation.

                I don’t know what you are pissing and moaning about. Paper profits? Those will go up in a puff of smoke in five days.

                Gratitude is an attitude I adopted many years ago. You should try it.

                • I know a few people that sold those “paper profits” and bought a second home in cash.

      6. Menzo, I’m 61 and still going strong myself. I stay active myself. I refuse to be a ‘couch potato’. No drugs or booze for me either. I quit smoking right after Katrina. More than a few people think I’m crazy too but the jury is still out on that one. I do everything I can for myself as long as I know exactly what I’m doing. When it comes to vehicle repairs I leave that to others who know what to do. Every libturd and his/her cat are against me but my ‘give-a-damn’ went to the junkyard way back when. Let anyone try to f#$% with me or any of my family and they’ll just get their stupid asses wasted. Like you I’m sick of all the libturd/globalist/NWO BS. Let them bring it.

        • I feel strange sometimes walking around somewhere with a crowd of people and realizing that the vast majority are sheep with not a clue about the people that want us all dead and that think being prepared is having a few extra cans of tuna in their cabinets. There will be an army of starving people at some point to fend off. Guess these thousands of bullets will be necessary sure enough.

          • Menzo, I have the same feeling every time I’m in a crowd and I avoid crowds all I can. Hell, I need to take a fresh inventory of my ammo supply, LOL. But yeah the bullets will be necessary one day. Bank on it.

      7. Translation: “You aren’t buying enough of my stuff. Get scared, even if things look OK.”

        • Meremortal,
          Good point. but the “survival” guys have to make a living. My feeling is most of these articles are aimed towards city people.
          I’m an out of shape “gentlelman”, farmer/rancher.
          So by the nature of having so many animals and a gradually improving year round garden, I have to be prepared. Have tools, fix everything, Solar power, gravity feed water system, and blah, blah, blah.
          Not to mention that I’m exposed to about every kind of natural disaster you can dream up, or get a credible government warning for a Nuke attack that will occur in a matter of minutes( I just kissed my wife and cracked open a beer, for that event). I made the choice to live here so I have to be responsible for my survival. I have to be prepared.

          Most people don’t have to deal with these things, so they don’t have a clue, and like the author says they can’t even think it through. The positive thing is we will get rid of a lot of idiots, as they will probably move closer to a government food source. If there is no government, then there is an even bigger problem for those city folk.

          • Rellik, when TSHTF, it’s gonna be all over but the crying for everyone in urban areas who don’t prep.

            • How many rural folks do you know that have prepped? A lot of them have the same attitude. They think the Red Cross will show up and help them.

              • PD,
                Most people here hate the Red Cross, but almost all of us have a “network”. I really don’t know how my neighbors would deal with a situation when the stores suddenly closed and the fuel stations were all closed. But I know what most of them can and have done. We can deal with it.
                Keep in mind my rural is an outer Hawaiian island, not Western Washington. I had a totally different plan there.
                Have a good week end! I’m going to harvest some white Pineapples.

                • Enjoy!

              • Most of us ” rural folks have what we need in any situation; a garden, running water and a still. We don’t need some government red cross puke messing up our stuff!


          • “…and like the author says they can’t even think it through.”

            That says it all right there because people aren’t trained either at home or at school to think things through anymore.

      8. Its simple….I’d rather be prepared and never needed to, than not be prepared, and wish I had.
        Same with a gun: I’d rather have it and not need it, than need it and not have it.
        As long as the preparation is not too costly (like insurance), your a fool to not have it.!!!

      9. In every neighborhood in America, there are people who believe prepping for SHTF stops with finding out which people in the neighborhood are prepping. Guess how they intend to survive SHTF? Not so strangely, they turn out to be Obama/Clinton supporters. Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition!

      10. Trump has postponed the inevitable. Bless his heart.
        I have always said I am not smart enough to know what straw is going to bring it all down – but we are overdue. If I had to guess it will be the world financial markets.
        This normalcy Bias is real and MOST people are in it. When the culling and death toll goes full tilt – There is NO amount of Prepping that will save you. You may last longer than most. But unless you know how to disappear – you too will be a victim.
        Staying in any devloped world country will mean death unless you are one of the elite. You think you can ride it out in a semi ungerground building in the Hills of WVA – Think again.

        • I’ll take my chances around Americans. Some retired American folks living in Nicauragua have found out that they may be in trouble. And may not have enough money to get back to the US.

          If you marry into a family in another country, and speak the language, you may do okay. But if not? You are an outsider. Period.

          • My uncle tried to talk me into retiring to Nicaragua.
            You are very right about the family connections.
            I politely declined. I ended up in Hawaii which has
            just as bad a third world government, but we have guns.

            • Living on an island with a bunch of racist natives that hate guns is not my idea of the good life. Stepping on geckos, giant termites, and giant centipedes that are poisonous are not my idea of paradise. Nor is toxic volcanic fog or walking on lava that is sharp enough to shred your foot if you are barefoot.

              I know a lot of mainlanders think Hawaii is a paradise. I am not one of those people.

              I am glad you found your happy place, Relik. I’m getting ready to go on a walk about and look for mine.

              • It’s not the native Hawaiian’s or locals that are usually the racists or hate guns. It’s the leftist liberal democrats on Oahu. Although I never thought of Hawaii as paradise , I will say I think I’m in one of the safest places to be for a SHTF event and just to think I have rellik as a neighbor so it can’t be all bad.

          • I liked your comment about the current situation in Nicaragua. The situation for Americans is the same in Costa Rica. The world doesn’t seem to like Americans much these days. Friends I know just got back from Europe. They stopped being Americans while they were in places like Germany and successfully passed themselves off as Canadians.

            If the sh*t hits the fan, I don’t recommend Americans leave the US for the same reason.

            After the Crash of ’08-’09, when sweet, delicious, gorgeous little Erin Burnett was working at CNBC, and ticking Maria Bartiromo off to no end with jealousy, Burnett said that if Americans were so tired of having American jobs and American manufacturing being out-sourced to China then they should move to China.

            Created quite the stir in both liberal and conservative circles. Remember?

            Sweet little Erin failed to point out that the Chinese Yuan was only worth .33-cents of the USD back then, and once Americans moved to China they would most likely, because of currency controls and exchange rates, not have enough money to get back to the United States if China started hating foreigners again, and another Boxer Rebellion were to breakout in China.

            Now that sweet little Erin Isabella Burnett has moved over to CNN, is married, has pumped out three (3) screaming babies, has put on some weight and is not quite the hottie she was back then, I am reminded of the adage about how you want to stick with the whore you know for as long as you can. Meaning: you are an American. You were born here. You grew-up here. Your family is here. You went to school here. You worked here (for as long as you could). America is your home — whore that she is.

            Just keep in mind that the Jews felt the same way about Germany in 1939. Just like the whites feel about South Africa today. Nothing changes.

            Get your second passport if that makes you feel better. Just realize that the next collapse will be global. Nobody likes Americans now. What do you expect things will be like when the SHTF?

        • Jakartaman your correct no fortress is strong enough to withstand a prolonged siege. There is not one Crusader Castle left in the Holy land. But it is possible to hide and survive. They have found many WWII Japanese solders decades after the war hiding on islands. I think the by and large the so called Elete most of whom do not have Know How and Self Reliance will not last a bit longer than anyone else. You cant eat gold or college degrees or stock certificates ect.

      11. If you live long enough, you see lots of disasters. Your preparedness pays off. You become increasingly conservative.

        I wish you could pass along common sense, knowledge, and wisdom, but this is impossible. You people rarely wake up until they have suffered by making their own mistakes. It’s why youth is wasted on the young.

        If anything, the Millennials are the most molly coddled generation, probably due to things like participation trophies and a ridiculous education system that promoted morons instead of failing them. But then, look at old exams from 1920 versus today. I doubt 95% could pass old high school final exams. While I have zero doubt that those 1920 students coud easily absorb high tech.

      12. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hLpE1Pa8vvI
        Millennials are ignorant and yet smug. They really are clueless and helpless, yet in spite of this, presume superiority. It’s weird.

      13. When the alt-sites — like Drudge Report, Zerohedge, and SHTF — stop taking the weekends off like the MSM — and like everybody else — then I will know the sh*t has really hit the fan.

      14. Normalcy bias was on my mind this week… My job has laid people off! It’s not just a doomsday concept… Smart people lost their jobs with no notice, we have a merger coming that was supposed to “increase opportunities” but people are not heeding the signs. .. Most probably think their jobs are secure. Maybe they are. As for me, I am preparing. I couldn’t believe they let go of the people they did. It’s like being on a sinking ship without a captain.

      15. I didn’t imagine that lava would be sharp, but that makes sense. I imagined it would be like basalt, cool and smooth. I got a terrible cut by coral at Poipou Beach in Kauai, but none while at the beach at Kona. Upon arrival, the lava fields were so stark on Hawaii that it was like an alien lanscape compared to the emerald green of Kauai.

      16. The Earth is a paradise, it’s the clueless ignorant people that can make you choose bitterness. Or you realize that the sins of others that most cause repulsion and outright anger are the very sort of sins we see in ourselves. We’re flawed, not because of YHWH, but because we rebel against YHWH.

        I truly believe that YHWH made us to reduce suffering. An ignorant rebellious immature soul causes suffering and an enlightened mature bondservant of Jesus Christ allieviates suffering. That is the great lesson of righteousness which is inextricably emeshed with altruism to allieviate suffering caused by sin.

        Sin is missing the intention that YHWH has for us. YHWH tries to gently guide the arrow which is the intention that is the true aim, but free will makes us rebel against that true aim. And others either through sefishness, ignorance, envy, or hate…disrupt our aim as well.

        When you intentionally choose ministry and yield to YHWH’s intentions, it’s not just charity but tough love too. And you then realize how foolish we all are. The ones you help are full of silly misguided pride, but when they let down their guard, they will admit to terrible life choices.

        It’s hard to be bitter when helping others find the right path. Then the Earth becomes even more lovely.

      17. In April 1966 I was in 9th grade about a mile from where a tornado tore through in Tampa at around 8:30 am. First period PE when the sky turned black with green tones. A couple hours later I was picked up at school by neighbors who told me the tornado hit the house where I lived. The roof was torn off and most of the walls were down. Lucky nobody was home except two dogs in the back fenced yard who somehow survived. An hour earlier arrival of the storm everybody was home. Lucky I guess.

      18. There will be those that survive terrible situations, and those who do not. Prepping is a way of raising the odds of your survival in a positive direction. Many will survive even the harshest situations by chance. Several men survived Nazis butchering captured US and Allied soldiers at Malmedy and other points along the Battle of the Bulge, by the slimmest of odds. Even in the cities there will be cases like this. The whole prepping idea is to plan and prepare for a possible harsh future/environment, in order to avoid a swift or terrible death because you did NOT prepare. Free of normalcy bias, or in other words thinking outside that little box so many people seem to like living in. Don’t discount peoples ability to swiftly adapt, or to beat the odds. I read of a teenage girl who was in a plane that crashed in the Amazon jungle, and walked and survived several weeks until she met some loggers.

      19. A normalcy bias caused by the encoded messages? The foolish Virgins. The foolish ones were believers. But that wasn’t good enough. Abandoned,with the door shut. Many say the extra oil signifies, enlightenment? No the foolish virgins were serious believers. I believe this is purposely encrypted? So the Tares don’t catch on? Because this is all about separating the wheat from Soddom and Gomorrah . And we are going to have Devine intervention on this one. The Tares must burn. So you must have extra oil?

      20. Remember the groom has been delayed.

      21. isnt the normalcy bias just another form of Darwinism ? so should we bother about it ?

      22. The Biblical story of Joseph, sold into slavery, winds up Pharoah of Egypt because he is a prepper with a gift for getting out of jail.

        Prepping is as old as Father Time.

        People who don’t have the skills to do things for themselves are slaves to people with skills. and depend on those with knowledge and wisdom.

        Freedom is never absolute. A rich man is chained to his possessions and dependent on his servants. A poor man lacks the things he needs, and must yield to his master (employer) or succumb. Freedom and slavery are two sides of a coin, two aspects of existence.

        No one is ever prepared. One is always getting prepared. It’s a journey.


        Some people live in a state of denial, others face facts and deal with them.

      23. There are two urban areas in my state. Even the best prepper who lived in them could not survive because even if they lived on acreage, had the best ancestral skills, weapons, seed, supplies, and spirituality, the mob of unprepared people would overrun that family.

        You have to face facts. 81% live in the dense urban zones which is very difficult for foreigners to understand.

        Not only would it be impossible, but the number who perish would create a terrible situation with unburied folks and multiple varieties of contagion. And these would spread via water, insect, rodent, birds, and mammale vectors.

        Say the prepper family goes underground and waits and bugs in, surviving on supplies. Eventualy they will be tempted to leave just to find out what happened and will send scavangers/scouts. And that is when they get raided or sick and bring that back to the homestead.

        And should the SHTF event be isolated to the USA, just as in history, other nations would colonize it…yet again. There would be too much natural resources and scavangable material, scientific equipment, Art, and vast amounts of land with a decent climate.

      24. Accepting change as the new normal is a way of coping. If we cant accept and adapt to change we wind up being like the Old Hippie in the Bellamy Brothers song. But we all put a certain amount of blind faith into stuff. If I didn’t have a bit of blind faith I wouldnr go hunting or fishing. Or plant a garden ect. But we must face reality and be a fatalist because we will eventually all die. So we prep and develop new skills that we possibly might never need to use. One skill that is handy is the accurate assement of threats to our lives and property by forces beyond our control. That’s why we prep for the different types of SHTF events.

      25. Outside of your immediate circle of protection, nothing is normal anymore and we must be vigilant.

      26. The only reason I can see for norm.bias , is not teaching the history of the Muslim sack of Europe ,hoping it will produce religious harmony? Or an evil group of extreme power hoping to destroy its only competition

      27. Will cause an immense amount of pain? You can count on it? If I’m reading things right, It will be the hardest test humanity’s ever experienced?And only the best of the best extra oil believers will get through that door.

      28. Many now know that “civic-mindedness” and “political participation” are useless, since their voice is ignored at best, at worst, they are put on a “watch list” (or slated for “suiciding”, “murder-suiciding”, etc.) for speaking up. The only thing that matters to the “citizen” (subject) about government is the cop’s or the military’s gun that’s there to be used against the “citizen” to enforce compliance by capturing or killing the non-compliant “citizen”.

      29. Websites like these are the perfect example of “the boy who cried wolf” scenarios. It’s always year after year the sky is falling the sky is falling on these type of sites. And you wonder why people quit paying attention.

        • Yea the worst case scenario is Tares like you catch on and don’t die. Please don’t prep Tare you are the reason we must suffer. Until your kind are gone.

        • As someone who can remember my orientation / sense of direction, fix complicated machines, read a label, who remembers the plot in movies, books, and real life, I would say that most people around me aren’t paying attention.

          There was never a ripoff, per se. They don’t live in the present or concentrate, regardless.

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