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Survival and Preparations Long and short term survival and 'prepping'.

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  #1  
Old 03-03-2021, 12:40 AM
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Default Survival - Being An Individual vs. Part Of A Group

There's been a lot of discussion over the years as whether 'the key' to 'survival' is being independent or being part of a group. There are arguments both ways and each involves compromise of one sort and to one degree or another. The scenarios run from grabbing an INCH bag and wandering off into the wilderness to community fallout shelters to lavish, converted missile silos.

In 1961, even The Twilight Zone explored what might happen if you focused on you and your's and the larger community... got involved. It's something which is still used in 'advertising' for shelters today.



We see it in independent films and big budget productions...



We see it 'hinted' at in 'reality television'...



The 'general' message appears to be that not only is a 'community' the better option, it is a necessity. It's not simply a "2 is 1 and 1 is none" mindset or the idea that "if we don't fight together, we'll hang separately." It's typically tied to human history where mankind survived and then thrived due to an ability for individuals to specialize; i.e., that no single individual or family can do 'everything' which is necessary and, at some point, you're going to not only want, but need access to things which you or your family cannot produce... right down to the gene pool and surviving as a species.

I'm curious how Calguns members view the issue.

Do you feel that you are 'better served' as an individual (be it a single person or single family) or as part of a 'survival' group/community?

Does it depend on the scenario? Does it depend on your location? Does it depend on the resources you have available? Is there a 'compromise' where you act independently, for the most part, but have a 'community' available as backup? Does a 'community' lend itself to making you too dependent upon others or does a mindset of 'going it alone' lead one to overestimate their abilities and chances?
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Old 03-03-2021, 1:34 AM
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I tend toward 'community'.

Base reason: I've gotta sleep sometime, so someone else has to be around and alert for problems. And just two never get to do anything else but guard and sleep.

I think the kibbutz idea has about the right population
Quote:
Today some 270 kibbutzim, with memberships ranging from 40 to more than 1,000, are scattered throughout the country. Most of them have between 300 and 400 adult members, and a population of 500-600. The number of people living in kibbutzim totals approximately 130,000, about 2.5 percent of the country's population. Most kibbutzim belong to one of three national kibbutz movements, each identified with a particular ideology.
https://www.jewishvirtuallibrary.org...bbutz-movement

Note that those groups have at least one unifying principle to keep members more or less on the same course; that might be harder here in the 500-600 size. And I'm pretty sure 'common ownership' is a non-starter in the US above a family group size; we don't really have a lot of clan experience these days.

(But it would be amusing to be 'The Librarian of Cottage Grove' like 'The MacDonald of Keppoch', not that I can claim to be qualified as clan chief.)

Last edited by Librarian; 03-03-2021 at 1:39 AM..
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Old 03-03-2021, 7:41 AM
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Flexibility comes to mind when thinking in broad terms. Some people seem to be overly focused on being prepared for a specific kind of event then get caught flat footed when something occurs outside of what was expected.

Having said that, we as humans, are social creatures and at some point, need to cooperatively interact with others for our own long-term wellbeing and advantage.

Jarred Diamond, in his book Guns, Germs & Steel, posits that western civilization advanced in part, because people were able to master food production on a grand scale due in part to the types of crops available, beasts of burden that could be domesticated to pull or carry burdens and a cooperative society.

Once a few could produce food for the many, others could spend their day thinking about math and science and figuring out how to invent and make new and useful things beyond what a society of hunter-gatherers could achieve.

With this in mind, cooperative interaction at some point, will become necessary. Going it alone, in my view is only a temporary solution to a temporary problem. Eventually, those who can work together will have the greatest survival advantage.
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Old 03-03-2021, 7:55 AM
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Trust IMO.. That is the biggest concern, out of everything, when introducing others (living) with your family, not of your family. Issues have been known to rise that make your families safety, a serious concern to your hive.

If that (trust) is not there 100%, what do you really have ?

People get weird, (make you nervous/uncomfortable) it's just a fact of life today.

Not everyone, obviously, but only takes one.
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Old 03-03-2021, 8:40 AM
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The old saying "It takes a village" is what comes to mind here.

While a family can live independently, any disruptions like an injury, illness or death can bring that group down as there is no room for redundancy such as you can get in a larger group. You can also allow for specialization in a group.

But as more eloquently stated already, building that group is hard. Given all the public ridicule that is heaped on those that prepare for what if situations, it is hard not to blame them.

I am a CERT Team Lead and have tried to feel out some of my team. Keep in mind these people have been trained by the County Fire Department to help the community when no one answers 911, even they feel that preparing for a potential society ending event is ridiculous. <sigh>

I have tried some local FB groups but they tend to self destruct given the member's different outlooks on politics, guns, role of the women, or more recently white supremecy...yep, two of those groups.
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Last edited by TheChief; 03-03-2021 at 9:14 AM..
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Old 03-03-2021, 9:01 AM
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Go on a solo hunting/camping trip to figure it out real quick. It sucks doing everything yourself. It’s really nice when you can split up the chores. When I can’t, I often go to sleep exhausted or hungry because I’m too tired to do everything myself. Sure it can be done but you need one hell of a base camp to make it easier. But then it’s also hard to move and set up a new camp and you end up using up the nearby resources because moving everything solo is such a chore.

You want at least 4 or 5 capable adults so a extended family situation could be ideal. Some tend camp, some fish, some hunt. That way you hedge your bets in case fishing or hunting was a bust.

Last edited by deckhandmike; 03-03-2021 at 9:04 AM..
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Old 03-03-2021, 9:03 AM
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You need good neighbors now as well as in any future emergency.

We started our little group of families by handing out 3 free pre-programmed BFuv5r radios all matching freqs/settings. Cell service was spotty at the time and EMS/LE is 1/2 hr or more away. So much for the "golden hour" for a medical. Calling a neighbor is quicker while waiting for EMS etc.. (my nearest neighbor is 6 miles down the road)

The radios were used during the Oroville damn incident and that was all it took to get them solidly on board. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oroville_Dam_crisis They started asking about BOBs and other things.

Now it's more neighbor helping neighbor whether it's bucking logs, splitting wood or scraping a rutted driveway. Borrowing tools is a big deal.

If we have a big project to tackle we thro a bbq to say thanx. If you feed them, they will come. Good neighbor reciprocity.

Trust comes when you KNOW your neighbor will come when you need them. Spending time getting to know them. Invest your time to hep them with a project. Need help setting up a computer? Fix a chainsaw? Marksmanship practice? Rotate tires? Cook a meal?

Next group project is getting everybody on board with medical training up to a minimum standard. My goal is BLS title 22 first aid. Being your own 911 takes some stress out of the picture.

So go be a good neighbor and plant some ideas with a neighbor or 2. Take a chance and you might find it paying off. It doesn't happen overnight. Perseverance and patients is key.

Get the hell out of the city.
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Old 03-03-2021, 10:44 AM
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Family is everything, and we are a clan. We are Mormons and have large families. We have prepared for the worst and pray for the best. There are over 40 of us and a couple of more on the way.

We are pretty self sufficient.

Only problems we have very long term is fuel and footwear.

Getting everyone home could be a problem if things were to happen quickly.
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Old 03-03-2021, 10:57 AM
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Twice I've taken my boys on week long "Robinson Crusoe" trip where we were dropped off by fisherman on an uninhabited desert island off the coast of Mexico. There is NO freshwater on the island. The items we brought were sleeping bags, a teakettle, a cork, a six foot length of copper tube, a cooking pot, fishhooks and line, and several magnesium fire starters. I also took a satellite phone because if one of us got hurt I didn't want this to be a suicide mission. We had to survive alone for a week until we were picked up.

By the end of the week we had lots of fresh water from our teakettle still, plenty of food, and an awesome camp made up of whale bones and shipwreck debris. The lesson... it's incredibly rewarding to know you can survive alone with almost nothing. But that's if no one is trying to take your stuff and absolutely nothing goes wrong. The moment things go sideways, you need community.
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Old 03-03-2021, 1:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FeuerFrei View Post
My goal is BLS title 22 first aid.
Quick reference for this is https://streamlinehealth.com/red-cro...nstructor-wsi/ and other places
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Old 03-03-2021, 2:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deckhandmike View Post
Go on a solo hunting/camping trip to figure it out real quick. It sucks doing everything yourself. It’s really nice when you can split up the chores. When I can’t, I often go to sleep exhausted or hungry because I’m too tired to do everything myself. Sure it can be done but you need one hell of a base camp to make it easier. But then it’s also hard to move and set up a new camp and you end up using up the nearby resources because moving everything solo is such a chore.

You want at least 4 or 5 capable adults so a extended family situation could be ideal. Some tend camp, some fish, some hunt. That way you hedge your bets in case fishing or hunting was a bust.
^^^THIS^^^

While I value self reliance, for any SHTF, long term survival yo need a small group of able bodied adults, preferably each with a special skill set; medicine, engineering, chemistry/physics, botany, survival.
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Old 03-03-2021, 4:17 PM
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The lone survivor wondering across the plains fully capable & content in his isolation is a myth. Most people who have prepared (mentally, physically, & supplies) can survive alone for a period of time, but as time goes on the things that could become issues tend to pile up. Not only are there security issues, and health/safety concerns; but psychologically, why would you want to? The longer you survive on your own the more you will wonder what your purpose is.

For those who don't have a group or a network, don't worry, just make yourself desirable to any group. I figure any group, either existing or Ad Hoc, will need mostly the same things and so have the same checklist for who they value as members: Do you have military experience? Combat Experience? Martial Arts? Do you have your own weapons and know how to use them? Do you come with supplies and the ability to be a benefit rather than a burden? Do you have seeds and know how to grow food? Do you have medical training & experience? Do you have other skills - blacksmithing, gunsmithing, distilling spirits, brewing beer or wine, engineering or chemical knowledge? Try to check as many boxes as possible.
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Old 03-03-2021, 8:11 PM
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In a real SHTF TEOTWAWKI situation alone is ok for a while but it’s too easy to get taken out. Vehicles are easy to disable and they can break. Unless you can fix it it will require finding parts or carrying tools etc.. tools parts take up room and fuel will be a sought after commodity...not to mention your belongings and food guns and whatever else you got.

For the most part the going out to my bug out spot .....well I’m betting the locals know the spot you’re bugging out to. In Covid lots of people tried to go to their vacation homes only to be stopped or turned around .

I personally feel that a community is better. If you’re alone one bad fall or a breaking of a limb, a snake bite, animal or human attack can disable and eventually kill you pretty quick. Most of us aren’t gonna be Hugh Glass.

Too big of a community has its own problems with people vying for attention, food, clothes, comfort, protection.

Then again....there is always Thunderdome and Auntie Entity
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Old 03-03-2021, 9:13 PM
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Something in the 10-15 size is the minimum.

3 teams of 3 on 8 hour shifts to provide cover while the rest go about the daily business. Everyone gets downtime but can still stay busy and know someone has got your back.

Much more than 40 gets to be a problem.
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Old 03-04-2021, 10:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Librarian View Post
Quick reference for this is https://streamlinehealth.com/red-cro...nstructor-wsi/ and other places
Thanx for that.
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“I didn’t know I was a slave until I found out I couldn’t do the things I wanted.”
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Old 03-04-2021, 10:30 AM
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I have found that getting people together is a slow process. Dealing with individuals with any usable skills is pot luck. You get what you get and make the best of it. I avoid the "volunteer militia" talk because IMO it's a sure fire way of chasing people away from what could be a more realistic approach to an emergency. Most don't want to be a soldier or train like one.

*Fire/Flood/Quake/Food preps are realistic. Plus the occasional medical. They do see the logic in that.

I have also found out that people will only choose what they feel is do-able for them. Getting people to care about their neighbor is always their choice. Can't make them do it. Once people care about their neighbor they'll be more willing to stick their neck out for them when the time comes. That's what I hope happens anyway.

In the mean time we have a get together and have some fun. We talk face to face, create relationships and kill some brain cells.

You can pick your friends. You can pick your nose. You can't pick your friend's nose or choose your neighbors.
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"Find out just what the people will submit to and you have found out the exact amount of injustice and wrong which will be imposed upon them and these will continue until they are resisted with either words or blows, or with both. The limits of tyrants are prescribed by the endurance of those whom they oppress."
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Old 03-04-2021, 10:41 AM
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Look to your Roman history for insight. Maximus once said “... we've got a better chance of survival if we work together.” I will trust General Maximus Decimus Meridius any day.
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Old 03-04-2021, 10:44 AM
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https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=LWRfWr65rlg
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Old 03-04-2021, 11:10 AM
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Community will ALWAYS be best but end of day a community is also like a family. Don't EVER forget that , there will be someone who thinks they know better than the rest and take measures to show you. There will always be that person who thinks he/she should be in charge , there will also be whisperers who try to change the thinking on another level.

Community is best but never trust anyone but yourself.
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Old 03-04-2021, 5:27 PM
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It really depends. If you are being pursued, traveling alone might be better. If you are at a fixed location, a group might be better. Except that you become a bigger target too.

I think it depends on a lot of factors.

Long term (weeks, months and years) survival requires a group of like minded cooperative people with skills and a will to survive.
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Old 03-04-2021, 5:42 PM
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Ishi, the last wild Indian (whatever you want to call him) couldn't survive as a loner, and if anyone has survival skills it would've been him.

As far as modern SHTF goes, I've read enough Bosnian stories, and even spoke 1st hand with some survivors...if SHTF is anything like that, you're not surviving as a loner. Not only do you need a group, you need to be able to trust everyone explicitly.

And, if you've never foraged; or even killed, preserved the meat, and brain tanned the hide...all without modern conveniences...you ain't surviving long in the wilderness.
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Old 03-04-2021, 5:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FeuerFrei View Post
I have found that getting people together is a slow process. Dealing with individuals with any usable skills is pot luck. You get what you get and make the best of it. I avoid the "volunteer militia" talk because IMO it's a sure fire way of chasing people away from what could be a more realistic approach to an emergency. Most don't want to be a soldier or train like one.

*Fire/Flood/Quake/Food preps are realistic. Plus the occasional medical. They do see the logic in that.

I have also found out that people will only choose what they feel is do-able for them. Getting people to care about their neighbor is always their choice. Can't make them do it. Once people care about their neighbor they'll be more willing to stick their neck out for them when the time comes. That's what I hope happens anyway.

In the mean time we have a get together and have some fun. We talk face to face, create relationships and kill some brain cells.

You can pick your friends. You can pick your nose. You can't pick your friend's nose or choose your neighbors.
I have a little different view.

1. No one can predict how a serious disruption will play out. It may escalate. It makes no sense not to plan for defense, even if you do not need to use your plans. You don't have to call yourselves a Militia, but protecting the community has to be the number one priority. All people in the community have to contribute in some way when there is a threat. And this requires coordinated and planned responses.

Otherwise you might as well run away and leave your homesteads behind at the first sign of aggression against your community.

2. If the situation is bad enough, people will realize that the neighbor that someone can't work with is another set of hands and skills. If someone cannot get along with them or other people, they must be removed.

You hope that people will find a way to work together.

3. If your group cannot effectively work together, or someone is being unreasonable about the need to plan for security. You are endangering yourself by staying in a dysfunctional group with misguided priorities, and it might be good to have a plan to leave the group at a moments notice should your group fail.

Some times it is a necessity to save yourself and/or your family from idiots.

If food and/or water become scarce you must be prepared for possible violence.
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Old 03-04-2021, 6:08 PM
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It's all about networking and community which I find incredibly hard to do in this day and age. Were more connected than ever yet more distant.

Even before covid I was preparing but was reluctant to discuss with anyone due to perceived ostracization. Even mentioning things like fire extinguishers were ignored by my colleagues at work. Doesn't bode well to network when you can't discuss these topics.

The difference is between 'preppers' who seek to survive a specific event (earthquake, fire, riot) and 'survivalists' who seek to thrive post event (ongoing civil war, grid down situation).

They're on the same page (shtf is possible) but are planning for different outcomes (short term event that passes and recovers vs long term event/permanance).

Unfortunately I'm only currently a prepper, I'm working towards being a survivalist but the key is networking that separates the two IMO.

You can't stockpile everything or enough of anything for long term (3-10 years).
You have to hope that things will get to a point where barter, trade of skills and mutual cooperation is possible.
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Old 03-04-2021, 6:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChuckD View Post
The lone survivor wondering across the plains fully capable & content in his isolation is a myth. Most people who have prepared (mentally, physically, & supplies) can survive alone for a period of time, but as time goes on the things that could become issues tend to pile up...
"Myth" may or may not be the right term. I think a better word would be... exaggeration. Just like...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rob454 View Post
...Most of us aren’t gonna be Hugh Glass...
Even Glass was headed back to 'civilization' to recover and re-outfit. Then again, Glass was also renowned for his penchant to "go it alone;" though he worked for the Government and died with two other trappers. That's where the 'exaggeration' comes in.

"A period of time" is a relative thing in that respect. Ron Hood used to talk about 'his addition' to the Rule of Three's...

Quote:
3 minutes without air
3 hours without shelter
3 days without water
3 weeks without food
His addition was "3 months without love;" i.e., companionship. The reality is that by Chapter 2 in Genesis...

Quote:
And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.
By the same token, you have the Japanese soldiers who lasted decades after WWII, existing 'alone;' though 'alone' was, mostly, another exaggeration as almost none of them were 'alone' most of the time, having other soldiers with them.

Ishi stood a good chance as a 'lone survivor;' but, was depressed over the loss of his family and turned himself in. Given that he thought the likelihood was that the 'whites' would kill him, it was tantamount to a 'suicide' attempt. But, his story does speak to the 'exaggeration' in that as the resources were increasingly thinned by the settlers, the Indians became more dependent upon raiding the livestock in much the same way we now have debates over the release of cougars and wolves.

The bottom line is that even the mountain men, who, perhaps, came the closest to the 'loner' image of survival, lived with various Indian tribes and would either return to the settlements or go to rendezvous to resupply. Likewise, the vast majority of them served with a group, not as lone individuals; i.e., even if they performed their tasks individually, be it hunting or trapping, they tended to travel together in the interest of safety. However, we do know that there were exceptions who, mostly, traveled alone. Yet, even they would occasionally touch base to sell their plews as free trappers, restock on supplies, share 'news,' and such. They were the quintessential examples of... Is there a 'compromise' where you act independently, for the most part, but have a 'community' available as backup?

Today, most of the skills involved in doing that have been lost and so have the opportunities to do so. For one thing, the continent is more densely settled. Even with an 'apocalypse,' it would likely be difficult to find an area large enough, that could provide enough, even for an individual, let alone a family group and/or a 'community,' to survive without coming into contact with others sooner or later.

It's why "a period of time" is a relative thing. It's been shown, time and again, that individuals or 'a family' can survive without others for what many would consider to be 'extended periods.' However, the length of those periods are, typically, dependent upon the resources available where they are located; even pursuing a 'migratory/nomadic' lifestyle. Such resource availability also tends to be a factor influencing the size of the group involved.

In an apocalyptic scenario, it is likely that, in the main (though not exclusively), the first phase would involve individuals and individual families having to survive on their own. Such is the reason 'preparation' tends to focus on small scale tools/supplies. After a period of time, there will likely be a slow 'gathering' in the interest of safety, supplies, support, et al. How long that period of time would be is going to be dependent upon a number of factors and, as has been alluded to by a number of posters thus far, a significant aspect will be what you bring to the group and what you need from the group; e.g., if you don't offer something unique, you may not be 'allowed in' and if the group doesn't offer what you 'uniquely' require, you may have no interest in becoming part of the group or even interacting with it.

Unfortunately, that tends to set up a 'competition' for resources. In a sense, such was the underlying scenario of a movie I am a fan of, Open Range. Duvall and Costner were 'free grazers;' i.e., a 4-man, independent group looking for the resources they needed to maintain their lifestyle and livelihood. They run into a 'community' and the 'leader' had no wish to 'share' the resources available to 'his community' with nomadic, independent groups. A clash ensued, with the independent group being absorbed by the 'community,' but only after offering something the community needed/desired and upending/removing the existing hierarchy so as to be 'allowed in' as part of the community.

Such a dynamic speaks to a variety of issues we see in the country even today. It's why I was curious to see what and how members thought in the sense that we tend to champion the 'individual,' yet we recognize the 'need' for a community for even the most independent. Interestingly, we tend to want that community to be, largely, geared to our own terms; lamenting the ridicule of the community for our focus on preparation, but looking for those who compliment our skill set and 'personalities.'

An inherent problem is the tension between the inability of the individual to provide for all of their potential needs and the limited resources of the community coupled with an ever-increasing complexity of 'acceptance' based on complimentary skills/personalities attempting to balance 'geared to individual terms' of participation as the 'community' grows in size.

It makes for an interesting, intellectual exercise, doesn't it?
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  #25  
Old 03-07-2021, 10:00 PM
ChuckD ChuckD is offline
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Originally Posted by TrappedinCalifornia View Post
"Myth" may or may not be the right term. I think a better word would be... exaggeration. Just like...



Even Glass was headed back to 'civilization' to recover and re-outfit. Then again, Glass was also renowned for his penchant to "go it alone;" though he worked for the Government and died with two other trappers. That's where the 'exaggeration' comes in.

"A period of time" is a relative thing in that respect. Ron Hood used to talk about 'his addition' to the Rule of Three's...



His addition was "3 months without love;" i.e., companionship. The reality is that by Chapter 2 in Genesis...



By the same token, you have the Japanese soldiers who lasted decades after WWII, existing 'alone;' though 'alone' was, mostly, another exaggeration as almost none of them were 'alone' most of the time, having other soldiers with them.

Ishi stood a good chance as a 'lone survivor;' but, was depressed over the loss of his family and turned himself in. Given that he thought the likelihood was that the 'whites' would kill him, it was tantamount to a 'suicide' attempt. But, his story does speak to the 'exaggeration' in that as the resources were increasingly thinned by the settlers, the Indians became more dependent upon raiding the livestock in much the same way we now have debates over the release of cougars and wolves.

The bottom line is that even the mountain men, who, perhaps, came the closest to the 'loner' image of survival, lived with various Indian tribes and would either return to the settlements or go to rendezvous to resupply. Likewise, the vast majority of them served with a group, not as lone individuals; i.e., even if they performed their tasks individually, be it hunting or trapping, they tended to travel together in the interest of safety. However, we do know that there were exceptions who, mostly, traveled alone. Yet, even they would occasionally touch base to sell their plews as free trappers, restock on supplies, share 'news,' and such. They were the quintessential examples of... Is there a 'compromise' where you act independently, for the most part, but have a 'community' available as backup?

Today, most of the skills involved in doing that have been lost and so have the opportunities to do so. For one thing, the continent is more densely settled. Even with an 'apocalypse,' it would likely be difficult to find an area large enough, that could provide enough, even for an individual, let alone a family group and/or a 'community,' to survive without coming into contact with others sooner or later.

It's why "a period of time" is a relative thing. It's been shown, time and again, that individuals or 'a family' can survive without others for what many would consider to be 'extended periods.' However, the length of those periods are, typically, dependent upon the resources available where they are located; even pursuing a 'migratory/nomadic' lifestyle. Such resource availability also tends to be a factor influencing the size of the group involved.

In an apocalyptic scenario, it is likely that, in the main (though not exclusively), the first phase would involve individuals and individual families having to survive on their own. Such is the reason 'preparation' tends to focus on small scale tools/supplies. After a period of time, there will likely be a slow 'gathering' in the interest of safety, supplies, support, et al. How long that period of time would be is going to be dependent upon a number of factors and, as has been alluded to by a number of posters thus far, a significant aspect will be what you bring to the group and what you need from the group; e.g., if you don't offer something unique, you may not be 'allowed in' and if the group doesn't offer what you 'uniquely' require, you may have no interest in becoming part of the group or even interacting with it.

Unfortunately, that tends to set up a 'competition' for resources. In a sense, such was the underlying scenario of a movie I am a fan of, Open Range. Duvall and Costner were 'free grazers;' i.e., a 4-man, independent group looking for the resources they needed to maintain their lifestyle and livelihood. They run into a 'community' and the 'leader' had no wish to 'share' the resources available to 'his community' with nomadic, independent groups. A clash ensued, with the independent group being absorbed by the 'community,' but only after offering something the community needed/desired and upending/removing the existing hierarchy so as to be 'allowed in' as part of the community.

Such a dynamic speaks to a variety of issues we see in the country even today. It's why I was curious to see what and how members thought in the sense that we tend to champion the 'individual,' yet we recognize the 'need' for a community for even the most independent. Interestingly, we tend to want that community to be, largely, geared to our own terms; lamenting the ridicule of the community for our focus on preparation, but looking for those who compliment our skill set and 'personalities.'

An inherent problem is the tension between the inability of the individual to provide for all of their potential needs and the limited resources of the community coupled with an ever-increasing complexity of 'acceptance' based on complimentary skills/personalities attempting to balance 'geared to individual terms' of participation as the 'community' grows in size.

It makes for an interesting, intellectual exercise, doesn't it?
Yeah, my point was not that people could not survive on their own, but rather that they can, but are unlikely to want to after "a period of time". The reason I purposely use that vague term is because the amount of time it takes to loose motivation is different for everyone.
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Old 03-07-2021, 10:07 PM
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Individual has some perks but alsonmajor drawbacks. Doing everything yourslef 24/7 is very taxing on you
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Old 03-08-2021, 4:57 AM
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Originally Posted by BajaJames83 View Post
Individual has some perks but alsonmajor drawbacks. Doing everything yourslef 24/7 is very taxing on you
Being dependent on others can also be taxing.

A lot of this comes down to trust and it could be a real question mark who to trust post-apocalypse.

The reality is that all of us place a certain level of 'trust' in others every, single day. It's not something we talk about much and it's something we often don't acknowledge. But, in a sense, we even 'trust' others with our very lives and the lives of others. We trust them with what we own; even if only to the degree of 'allowing' them to know we have it or suspect we do, whatever "it" is.

Does it simply come down to a calculation of the perks/drawbacks of being an individual vs. part of a 'community?' Or, is it inevitable that we are and/or will be part of a 'community' and the calculation surrounds what level of interaction would be required to remain so while deriving the benefits and minimizing the risks? If so, what might that level of interaction be as an 'average' in terms of your level of contribution vs. what you perceive as the necessary 'draw' from the 'community?'

As I said, it makes interest fodder for contemplation.
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Old 03-08-2021, 3:22 PM
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From an animal perspective, I like the mountain lion vs the wolf pack. Something about it seems appealing to thrive as a solitary hunter. Hunt on your own, have your own territory vs have a committee meeting on every decision and get bulldogged by the loud ones. Just seems more streamline and efficient. Does require much more training and skill. Wouldn't work well for rescue type scenarios that need resources. Yet there is always self rescue (a skill many people fail to utilize). I guess there is the agility and speed factor also that may be missing with two legs.
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Old 03-08-2021, 4:26 PM
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Family and good friends are everything. I am highly skilled but I don’t know everything. Nor am I capable to do all the labor needed to survive. Plus I don’t think I would want to survive alone.
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Old 03-10-2021, 6:24 AM
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A few thoughts from others...

Pros And Cons Of Being Member Of A Survival Community

Quote:
...One of the hardest part of being a prepper is that you must be a jack and master of all trades. When you start making a list based on even the most common fundamentals such as providing food, water, shelter, and medicine, you will see that there are dozens of things to learn in each category.

By the time you factor in person and stockpile defense, transportation, developing skills for barter, waste management, clothing, and dealing with modern environmental pollution, it becomes impossible to learn all you need in just a few weeks or months. To add insult to injury, a good percentage of videos and how-to guides are either completely wrong and will cause failure when you try to use them, or are so confusing you cannot possibly get the right series of steps for success.

Unless you have a diverse background and experience, or dedicate yourself to this field most of the time, the odds of surviving as a solitary prepper may be much lower than you wish to believe...

As harsh as it may seem, smaller groups with fewer resources will always be the ones targeted for destruction and winnowing out. While there may be strange turns of fate, even a very strong solitary survivor will eventually need the support and resources of a larger group of people and the assets they control. In the event of large scale or prolonged social disruption, recovery is likely to happen faster in a survival community...

On the surface, there are many advantages to being in a survival community. Unfortunately, there are some hidden factors that can easily make joining such a group one of the worst decisions of your life. To begin, it is important to recognize that the prepper mentality is unique. People with our mindset are inclined to be thinkers, pioneers, and firm believers in independence. While we can take orders, that doesn’t mean we want people controlling our lives, or constantly telling us that we have to give up personal aims “for the good of society”...
Loners help society survive

Quote:
When most of a community is rushing in one direction, the few who hang back may serve to protect the whole population from something catastrophic attacking the group, says a team of ecologists...

But loners exist across the natural world, and they might just serve a purpose, said Corina Tarnita, an associate professor of ecology and evolutionary biology. She ticked off examples of loners who sit out their species' collective actions: the small herd that skips the great wildebeest migration, the locusts that peel off from the swarm and revert to calm grasshopper behaviors, the handful of bamboo that flower a few days before or after the rest of the species, and the slime molds that hang back from forming the swaying towers studied by Princeton luminary John Bonner.

"Now that we're starting to look for it, we realize that a whole lot of systems are not perfectly synchronized -- and it's tantalizing to think that that there may be something to this imperfect synchronization," Tarnita said. "Individuals that are out-of-sync with the majority of a population exist in humans, too. We call them misfits or geniuses, contrarians or visionaries, very much depending on how the rest of the society feels about their behavior, but they certainly exist."

To Tarnita, the problem with collective systems like wildebeest migrations and locust swarms is that they do not easily lend themselves to experimental manipulation, to testing whether loners are random or a predictable quantity, possibly subject to natural or cultural selection. But she and her collaborators found an ideal system in which to test these questions: the cellular slime mold, Dictyostelium discoideum. In the March 18 issue of PLoS Biology, they demonstrated that evolution could indeed select for loner behavior in slime molds. Loners are both an ecological and an evolutionary insurance plan, a way to diversify a genetic portfolio to ensure the survival of the social, collective behavior...

Collective actions provide huge benefits but they often come with risks, whether it is cheaters undermining the cooperation necessary to build a slime mold tower or rinderpest -- an infectious disease also known as cattle plague -- spreading aggressively through the dense wildebeest migrants. The loners who hang back might therefore serve as a bet-hedging strategy, ensuring that damage to the majority doesn't wipe out the entire population or its ability to be social. In other words, and counterintuitively, the loners might be the key to preserving the social aspect of these systems -- they themselves are not social, which makes them invulnerable to the kinds of threats that collectives face, but their offspring retain the ability to be social under the right conditions, so sociality is preserved...
As both of the above pieces suggest, it is inevitable that we are and/or will be part of a 'community' and the calculation surrounds what level of interaction would be required to remain so while deriving the benefits and minimizing the risks? As an example, take the film Cast Away. The whole premise was to take this highly modern guy and stick him in a situation where he had, literally, nothing. Except... Did they manage to accomplish that?

Then they gave him...



He couldn't have produced those things himself. It required a level of 'creativity' on his part in terms of how he utilized or realized their utility; but, while they made his existence on the island easier, did he already have alternatives? He'd made a 'cutting edge' to get into coconuts. He didn't use any of those items to make fire beyond the psychological 'encouragement' Wilson provided. The videotape used for lashings simply extended his existing, natural supply. Right on down the list. In short, they made his existence easier, but were they necessary to his survival?

There were three survival instructors who consulted on the film... David Wescott, Steve Watts, and David Holladay. On the DVD, there is a short entitled Stop: Surviving as a Cast Away It's an interesting piece in that they discuss the basic mechanics involved, but also what happens to an individual who survives alone. Steve Watts, I believe, was the one who said that "the ultimate" was someone who becomes so 'introverted' that his existence is no longer contingent on others. But, is that really feasible?

First, even ignoring the 'goodies' in the FedEx packages, Hanks' character had an education and experience doing certain things; all of which involved others. They were what allowed him to 'reason' his way through things in that, while the script writer tried to keep things as 'naturally evolving' in terms of how to open coconuts, etc., there was almost always an element of prior education/experience involved.

Second, he needed a 'sounding board' which became Wilson. We all have an internal dialogue, but we all tend to have others to help us 'think through' situations and seek solutions; even if those 'others' are solely in written works (or online ). For many, maybe most, we need a physical manifestation of that 'other,' which is why those left alone begin "talking to themselves" in that it provides a tangible 'sound.'

Third...



...and...



...were his motivation to just keep breathing. In other words, the HOPE of reconnecting with people and serving a purpose beyond simple existence.

We see that in your responses. Virtually everyone has acknowledged a 'desire' to be part of a 'community' rather than alone for the duration. A few want to be Kwai Chang Caine or Lone Wolf McQuade, fighting their own battles, touching base with communities, while not becoming an intrinsic 'part' of one. Surviving, primarily, on their own; but, with a little help now and again. Existing somewhere between virtually nothing to hand and having a greater purpose. Yet, as this guy discovered...

Quote:
...Like you, I've recently found myself thinking about what life might be like if the shops completely ran out of food. No milk, no pasta, no canned goods.

The thing is, I first had this "novel idea" six months ago when a workmate and I decided to do an experiment. I'd be the guinea pig and he would film it.

The plan was for me, a rank amateur at this sort of thing, to "live off the land" — to survive as if there was no food in the supermarkets, or my kitchen, for four weeks.

I'd eat a mixture of native bush foods, weeds, feral pests, insects, chickens, seafood, and whatever else I had in the garden.

As well as testing whether I could do it, we wanted to see if there were health benefits to the diet I'd be forced to adopt. We were also keen to explore the environmental benefits, and find out if I could save some money.

I went into this experiment as a bit of a lark, trying to see what would happen if I did something unimaginable...

By day six, I still wasn't sure that I had it in me to last four weeks.

It had been a really steep learning curve, and I'd discovered a bit more about how to live if the shops ran out of food...
What were once everyday skills have largely disappeared as we've become more and more urbanized; i.e., dependent upon a community which allows individuals to specialize. It's not that humans can't do it, at least some of us, but it begs the question as to why we'd want to have to do it. The flip side, however, is how well we are able to cultivate an unique skill or skill set and accept that as our purpose or, more accurately, our means of 'surviving' within the community.

As I alluded to in the OP, I suspect the question becomes dependent upon one's personality, not so much in terms of physical ability, but mental stamina; i.e., Is there a 'compromise' where you act independently, for the most part, but have a 'community' available as backup? I don't mean mental stamina simply from the standpoint of being able to handle being alone or being lonely (two, entirely different mental/physical states). I also mean in terms of one's ability to operate within a community as both a giver to and a taker from that community. As has been observed by several, 'going it alone' can be taxing; but, as I noted, so can being part of a group/community.
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  #31  
Old 03-10-2021, 8:03 AM
KevinB KevinB is offline
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I live in a very rural area of CA. Have spent most of my adult life there.

I know a ton of people that have perfect skills to use to survive on their own and everyone of those people would never try to go it alone. Its a fantasy that will get you killed or to die a slow painful death of decline and starvation.

Its all about calories. You can't hunt and gather enough calories long term to make it. You can't carry enough to survive.

How do you clothe yourself ?. Boots don't grow on trees. The list goes on and on. Do you ever wonder why the people of the depression never throw anything away, because they know that given time they will need it.

Me and my family have traveled extensively in very poor areas of South America and see how people survive on little or nothing. I'm not sure I could do it long term. Their calorie intake is half of what ours is. Keeping warm isn't a issue. Water is everywhere.

A well prepared group or family is going to be your only chance to survive long term, even then its going to be a huge challenge.

Lets pray we never have to find out. God Bless.
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