SYSTEMIC RISKS

Cities Are Artificial and Exist at the Expense of Resources from Elsewhere

the-risk-of-survival-in-cities

Modern cities are not natural in that they are artificial unnatural centers of human existence.

Cities rely upon energy and resources from elsewhere to enable their existence and survival. These resources come from mostly invisible and intertwined complicated ‘just-in-time’ distribution networks and systems. Life in the city wouldn’t exist without them.

Systemic risk? Yes, I believe there is systemic risk there.

 
Supplies like food, gasoline, and most everything else are all trucked in from other places.

When The Trucks Stop, It’s Over…

Infrastructure systems such as water, electricity, and sewage are all systems that also depend on other infrastructure networks – not to mention their ongoing decay over time.

You might say that cities and even metropolitan regions of suburbia as potential ticking time bombs of disaster. As long as everything is working and functioning as expected, no problem. But when any of the systems glitch, there are immediate repercussions – many of which may rapidly become detrimental to one’s survival.

Normalcy bias has blinded the vision of most as to the systemic risks they face. One aspect of normalcy bias is the assumption that because ‘it’ has never happened before (to them) it is assumed that it never will. The thing is, there are many SHTF ‘triggers’ that have not happened (yet) which could become completely disastrous to anyone living in the cities (or surrounding suburbia) where population density is immense.

Cities are not self-sufficient. Cities cannot feed themselves. EVERYTHING must be delivered-transported to the cities for the people therein to survive. The scary thing is – the majority of the population live in the cities and their surrounding metro regions. ALL of these people are at risk and are (unknowingly) putting their lives and survival in the hands of many others and their systems.

Having said that, the Industrial Revolution and the subsequent advancements in energy and technology have enabled tremendous benefits for the human race. Much of which has taken place in the cities. All I’m pointing out is the fact that there is systemic risk to living there and there is danger while presuming that it will always be safe to do so.

Note: While I’m picking on cities, you might say the same dependencies are there for most other places too. Most people do rely on infrastructure. It’s just that cities are concentrated centers of dependency.

Be aware that cities will be death traps following collapse. Your survival will depend upon having a plan BEFORE disaster strikes.

Know multiple routes out of the city, including those that are NOT major routes.

Read more: The Best Route to Bug Out or Get Back Home

If collapse actually occurs, get out IMMEDIATELY.

Know where you’re going to go (ahead of time!).

Continue reading: It’s Time to Bug Out but Where Will You Go?

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85 Comments

  1. The cities and suburban feeder-zones are doomed if there is a SHTF disaster. The people living in such concentrated areas are consumers, not producers — they are completely reliant on others. No question about it, and unless an urban/suburban dweller has a 100% disaster plan for immediate evacuation without having to fight through the masses, the consequences will be difficult (or deadly) to face. There’s really no point trying to convince or warn an urban/suburbal dweller of their choice of residence — cognitive dissonance has a stronghold. Those who ‘get it’ aren’t very willing to waste their own precious time at this point. As a Nation, we are seeing the beginnings of war, both domestically and abroad. Of course, the masses are busy chasing hashtag wars, sucking up mainstream memes, downloading free apps, and commenting on Facebook posts.

    The theory of evolution just may prove itself to the Progressives.

    1. @ Modern Throwback

      “…unless an urban/suburban dweller has a 100% disaster plan for immediate evacuation …”

      Problem is, where are 300 MILLION people going to go???? Not my place that’s for sure and I bet not yours either…

      I personally believe the “roomers” that 90-95% die off in the first 3-6 months if TSHTF. And honestly not so sure I will have the aptitude to make it through, but I sure as hell will try, and plan on it.

      “theory of evolution” agreed 1000%

      NRP

      1. Yeah, I left out the word ‘foolproof’ on the 100% disaster plan — my bad. The point was — there is no ‘foolproof’ plan! High population zones only complicate situations and plans. Remember the Florida and Louisiana hurricane evacuations that took days and days and folks couldn’t escape? That’s why the Feds won’t predict urban evac plans anymore — there simply aren’t enough roadways to accommodate the populations.

    2. Colonial era settlements looked a lot like (fenced-in) suburban neighborhoods, but were surrounded by farmland. Megacities are playgrounds for the rich, but ghettos for most.

  2. The Amish were wise enough to not allow themselves to become totally dependent upon the grid.

  3. I think it’s highly ironic that the “environmentally conscious” UN wants everyone in highrise apartments in easily controllable population blocks, with entirely separate agricultural areas. I talk to urban dwellers who live at the center of everything so their entertainment and work and shopping is close. They “Don’t have to drive!” If they need to drive somewhere outside their little safe zone, they’ll hire a taxi or an uber. They’re saving resources!

    It’s rather like someone saying “I bought a brand new motorcycle for 20,000. I had to mortgage my house, but I saved $300!”

    SMH.

    1. @ Lauren

      I wish I had the time to type out the conversation I had with oldest brother in Pot-Land; we talked for hours on the fact of what you said about the Urban Dwellers. Most people he knows never travel more than 5 blocks form “home”.

      NRP

  4. Pssst Don’t tell them where their food comes from or where their sewage goes – I don’t want them here. Give them the expensive latte, fake news paper, and the uber drive – what could go wrong?

    It is too bad that there is no real solution. You can not divide up the entire country so everyone would have three arable acres, be capable of sustainable production, and be able to co-exist in a barter society. Minus 90% some day!

    1. Sadly, they do expect to be part of the “ideal” 200 million population when it all falls apart. Lets see, 50 million just in the US who are absolutely certain that their environmentally sound urban lifestyle is going to save them and make them automatically part of the special few who will be chosen to be part of the ideal world.

      The one time I pointed out this numerical discrepancy, I got blank stares and they changed the subject.

    2. @ homebody

      HAHAHA, I had a perfect conversation with another brother that was living in San Diego and was visiting, I pointed out the Animas River right below my home mentioning (when I was “taking a leak” off the back deck) that all that water down there is your drinking water (after being used another 7 times) …. HAHAHA, he was NOT happy about that fact..

      Friggen Snowflake

      NRP

      1. @ NRP

        Send him a “LifeStraw” for his tap water. That would not be adding insult to injury, would it?

  5. Some governments in the past have tried to break down the urban/rural divide. Some countries sent many from the cities into the countryside to work the land (by force). Other countries made slaves of the people that worked the land to supply the cities.

    Which way will this country go?

    1. The way it looks now…they’ll force everyone into the cities and run the massive gov’t owned farms mechanically.

  6. Even small towns don’t actually produce much. In my small town of 1,800 we have lawyers, storekeepers, teachers, clergy, auto mechanics, heavy equipment operators, bentonite miners, government employees, railroad workers, restaurant workers, one optometrist, one pharmacist… We no longer have a doctor or veterinarian in our town. We have a few handymen, but no electricians or plumbers.

    I think all of us – even those in very rural locations should take an inventory of the goods and services that are produced locally. In this county we have oil, cattle, hay, sugar beets, sunflower seeds, and bentonite clay. In the next county there is a Pepsi plant and a couple of lumber yards. Not much else around here unless we grow it or produce it ourselves.

    Cities do produce a few things, such as canned goods, autos and other manufactured goods. A town near me has a large sugar factory. But all of those things require transportation of raw materials from somewhere else.

    1. Very true! I’d like to also add that even in rural areas, a lot of people are still incredibly dependent. I live in a small NH town, and there are plenty of idiots here. We lost power fir a day few summer’s ago, and they were all out driving around, bbecause there was nothing to do at home.

      1. And there were fights, breakins, tons of drunks all hampering clean up of damage from the storm that caused the outage. I once rented in a rough part of Roxbury, MA many years ago. The negative energy here that night was comparable to.

    2. our town has been downgraded from Rural to Frontier. I love it. We have a post office and a gas station.

    3. City and county planners are the ones who’s jobs actually determine their regions’ employment diversity. The healthiest economies are those that are diverse so that there isn’t a dependence on one or two types of business. This is why we often see incentives going to businesses so that they will locate in certain areas — it becomes financially feasible for a government to offer tax credits or perks.

      The unhealthy cities and counties don’t have effective planners and it becomes a financial burden for the residents. Case in point, Detroit — that town was predominantly an automobile manufacturing city and when the mfrs left, the city and city residents suffered tremendous loss.

  7. A great place to start the massive culling. Actually, the US doesn’t have it so bad. The combined population of the top 2 metropolitan areas in the world (Shanghai, China and Karachi, Pakistan), (60,000,000) is about 10 million more than the total of the top 50 cities in America (49,000,000). Can’t imagine how they feed themselves now, much less when the food runs out and the lights go off!! It’s gonna look like the hoards of World War Z!!

    I wonder how much TP 49 million zombies use every day!!

    1. Most of the world population do not use TP – left hand is for wiping. An insult to offer left hand for shaking in many countries. Sorry to spoil your appetite.

      1. Well let’s see, 49,000,000 ZOMBIES * 2 rolls per week / 7 days a week = 14,000,000 per day….

        NRP

  8. Cities, heck, our whole state pretty much produces nothing and depends heavily on tourism, development etc, less than 20% of all food consumed here is grown here, and we have year round growing conditions, we have 0 grain production, 0
    Our local economy used to be heavily agriculture based, but the last sugar plantation just closed and the last pineapple grower is teetering after fighting to ressurect the industry locally,
    Things will be interesting, all the touchy feely liberal ninnies who scream for local produce, produce nothing,,,,,

    1. I always liked this Bill Mollison quote:

      “The greatest change we need to make is from consumption to production, even if on a small scale, in our own gardens. If only 10% of us do this, there is enough for everyone. Hence the futility of revolutionaries who have no gardens, who depend on the very system they attack, and who produce words and bullets, not food and shelter.”

  9. I LOVE to pick on California, so here goes…

    “California’s SB 350 requires the state to procure 50% of electricity from renewable energy and double energy efficiency savings by 2030”
    “power rates 45% above the U.S. average”
    “California now imports 33% of its electricity supply”
    “California easily leads the nation with nearly 470 power outages a year, compared to 160 for second place Texas”
    “Both large and small hydro generation in California have plummeted over 60% in recent years”
    “California’s troubled Ivanpah solar thermal plant near Nevada, being “paid four to five times as much per megawatt-hour as natural-gas powered plants”
    “The San Diego Union-Tribune reports that, “Federal data indicates Californians paid $171 billion in higher costs for power over the last 20 years, compared to the national average”

    Ohhh yeah, try this one…. “California also unsustainably imports over 90% of its natural gas”

    *** Info from; forbes.com

    Now I’m just talking energy to CA. but it looks as the Snowflakes have dug that hole themselves. Do NOT feel sorry for them when “Lights Out”.

    More to follow;
    NRP

    1. Ok NRP I agree on California and their power problems. Since I live on Nor Cal ( land of Jefferson) I say be fair and also state all the produce, beef,chicken ECT that California exports

      1. @ poorman

        I will agree CA. exports all kinds of stuff.

        1. Produce; tainted with chemical fertilizers and pesticides. FYI, the farms are being overran with millions of housing developments and the soils is becoming so contaminated it’s almost to the point of being poisoned and will not support vegetation, seen it with my own eyes on a farm my relatives once owned.
        Ever have a tomato from the store lately? Don’t even taste like a tomato anymore.

        2. Beef; that are injected with steroids and feed chemical enhanced foods, as a side note, CA is making a concerted effort to eliminate ALL ranched and feed lots in CA, claiming the “cow farts” are contaminating their “air quality”.

        3. Chicken; did you read where the CA food producers are now “required” to expand the size of “chicken coops” and to totally “modernize” the raising conditions to almost triple the size? Wonder what that’s going to do for the price yar paying for a KFC meal?

        Please see an article I wrote; You Are What You Eat Including Food Additives And Chemicals…

        Just for the heck of I pulled up a chart of import and export totals from CA. here is the narrative of that report.

        “This timeline depicts California’s imports and exports of goods from August 2015 to August 2016. In June 2016, the value of California’s imports amounted to about 34.55 billion U.S. dollars; its export value came to about 14.65 billion U.S. dollars.”

        Now I’m no math wizard…. But…. That seems like a heck of a defecate to me.

        poorman, not trying to cause a fight by any means, but the cities ARE sucking the supplies dry as Ken’s article senses. I do consider CA as one HUGE city, and yes North CA has some open areas, but take a look at a night satellite photo and tell me what ya see, besides one solid chunk of lights.

        NRP

        1. @ poorman

          Ohhh yeah, I forgot the most interesting thing California “exports”; Liberals….. HAHAHAHA

          PLEASE stop exporting Liberals……. God knows we have enough of them running around trying to turn the rest of the country into CA…. ROFLMAO

          NRP

          1. NRP Hoping to export more and more liberals every day pal. I have been giving them you address LOL. As for all the veggies,beef and chicken it’s the same throughout the country. They not only insist the cages are larger( so the chickens have room to move) but that anyone selling eggs from another state does the same. Actually after a bump for a couple of months the price of chicken and eggs went back to normal. I only buy free range chicken and eggs anyway.

            Never take any of your comments as trying to start a fight just as I hope you never take mine that way. Just like people to know that all of California is not liberals and Democrats. Oh yeah as far as the light thing you should know the closest stoplight and street light to my home is 13 miles to the west and 45 miles to the east.When it gets dark here it gets DARK.

        2. OK, NRP, that really made me laugh. Or choke. Or something.

          There’s a difference between defecate and deficit. At least I wasn’t drinking anything when I read that. I likely would have snorted it out my nose.

        3. If we can’t farm on an industrial scale, 7.3B humans cannot live on this planet, nor can 325MM humans live in what is now the USA.

  10. Major cities remind me of the Capital in the first Hunger Games movie: the 13 districts feed the Capital-
    District 1 Luxury Items (New York state?)
    District 2 Masonry
    District 3 Technology (California?)
    District 4 Fishing
    District 5 Electricity
    District 6 Transportation (Michigan?)
    District 7 Lumber
    District 8 Textiles
    District 9 Grain
    District 10 Livestock
    District 11 Agriculture
    District 12 Mining
    District 13 Weaponry

    Post-America fiction, the Capital premise functioned until the Districts rebelled. So, California wants to split off, Texas can be independent if needed (separate grid), Michigan has the water, who knows where it will go.

    1. @ Grey

      I don’t know the movie but if that is direction we are going – we should be in the distribution business to survive.

    2. I thought The Capitol alleged that district 13 was a smoldering wasteland, when in fact, The Capitol wouldn’t mess with district 13 because that district held nuclear weapons.

  11. The real threat will come from hordes of hundreds of thousands if not millions of “walking dead” pouring out of the cities first into suburbia where they will find no resources then they will come for the country folk… All of us will need to adopt the gray man lifestyle. Don’t think just because you live in a rural location your starving unprepared neighbors a 1/2 mile down the road won’t smell that fresh baked bread coming from your home.

    They will kill you for food.

    Getting back to Gray Man tactics for survival… Consider that you will need to keep a very low / invisible profile for at least 6 months – 1 year until the mass die off occurs. Nobody will be safe regardless of how remote you live. If there is a paved road leading to your home you can expect trouble.

    You need to prepare foods without cooking or just boiling water then soaking your food in a sealed container like rice for example. Forget about baking bread or bbq’d meat. The walking dead will come a-runnin if they catch wind of your cooking.

    If you have canned food bury it in the ground before the zombies advance into your area and onto your homestead. You always recover the food after the zombies move on.

    Be prepared to abandon your homestead.

    1. Yes, if there is a catastrophic event. But, I believe we will just slowly sink into a man made sewer like some other countries or even some areas of our major cities. Then you will see much more inner city violence and people die on the streets of disease and hunger. That is the life they know and they think, one that is safe because the government will help them – NOT.

      1. @ homebody

        “Then you will see much more inner city violence”

        From my favorite city in the whole wide world; Chicago
        Year to Date; 2017, remember we’re talking 2-1/2 months so far
        Shot & Killed: 114
        Shot & Wounded: 501
        Total Shot: 615

        Don’t think we need to wait till TSHTF there… AND they sure don’t need to “import” anymore….

        NRP

        1. @ NRP

          So glad that Chitcago is a long long way from Idaho. The gangs in the east should meet up with MS13 and other latino gangs at Four Corners for a war. You locals could then clean up the remainders with your backhoe of course.

        2. You know if they had more practice and better aim we could probably get those killed ratio’s up. Might sound cold but most of those shot are gang banger and drug dealers so there is really very little loss to society. JMHO

    2. I think it is generally accepted that the average human will steal food within 3 days and kill for it within 1 week.

  12. I can confirm. Cities suck. Not just the dependency, but the people. It seems that everyone in cities has the life sucked out of them and wander around like zombies–not only that, but as Ken has previously pointed out, cities are also very liberal. All of these this accumulate together to make me think that if the SHTF, people will be reduced to animals. I cannot see generosity, mercy, and cooperation in a city if the SHTF, I could see it in the country, but I couldn’t see it in a city. It would be every man for himself and there would be little to no empathy. I would never, ever think to “shelter in place” if the SHTF in a city, and honestly, I think that those that would are kinda… dumb….. sorry. Doing so would be suicide, you would have a better chance in my opinion if you were to just walk out into the country and place your life at the mercy of the people who aren’t screwed up.

    1. Youngster
      In a real SHTF situation it’s not just the folks in the city that will turn to animals. There are a lot of folks that you might think are good people that are going to revert to animals once the veneer of civilization is gone. Many many people only act right and respect others because that is what is expected. Once it becomes a WROL situation they will surprise you how fast they will start preying on each other I have been in some bad situations in my life and have seen just how fast people can degenerate,it’s not something I would choose to see again.

      1. I’m not saying they wouldn’t. The veneer you speak of is thinner here than there, that is my point. I cannot imagine the terrible things that would happen in a city–I could only imagine that it would be hell on Earth. I could see rural areas getting bad, even REALLY bad in some places, but not like a city.

        And this is where things are creepy. There are no friends here, just acquaintances. I swear that everyone is already ready to stab each other in the back where I live.

  13. This is the way humans have operated their civilizations, They build a trading center with trade routes converging on that nucleus, be it roads or waterways/oceans. Large populations had a difficult time being independent from those trade routes of greater distances.

    I read about my ancestors who were very independent pioneer farmers before there were any towns in their areas. They thrived without a constant influx of imported goods from other parts of the country because they had taken what they needed before leaving to the frontier, had plenty of natural resources available around and traded with locals in their area in the early 1800’s. The life was difficult but they survived.

    When SHTF, I hope to be like my ancestors because I am practicing much of what their lives were like out in the wilderness. History had sparked an interest in this area for me from my mom and grandparents stories about their “primitive” ways of life. Those people who love the cities and live dependent on them, have no idea about the basics of survival nor do 99% of them care. I keep hearing the song, “Wipe Out” in my head.

  14. I am not a fan of cities. Though I now work within one, my job is in the periphery of the city. When we bought our house, I made sure that we bought in a location where I could avoid the downtown area. The idea of bugging out from work to home is frequently on my mind.

    Once you work as a fireman, you try not to live within a multi-story apartment building. Once you work as a cop, you try to stay away from the crowded or “bad” parts of town.

    My most vulnerable job feeling: Helicopter borne paramedic. Those things go down frequently and the only reason they are used is : 1. Time is of the essence. or 2. The roads are clogged and impassable. I will never do that job again. (no matter these days as I am now too old to do that stuph anymore)

  15. True of *modern* cities,however I think barring say, direct nuclear strikes, port cities especially will always have some sort of population. Not saying I would want to be there if/when all hell broke loose, just that some may adapt + hang on. I’m not talking about Las Vegas, but say parts of the northeast.

  16. Clarification: obviously Vegas isn’t a port city. Hahaha. I’m thinking waterways and trade by boat vs. truly artificial and not adaptable for any sort of settlement.

    1. @ awka

      Vegas seems to be swimming in fresh water – greatest waste in a desert I have ever seen. But after the great earth quake, Vegas will be ocean front property – better get in on the ground floor lol.

      1. Lost Wages and Phoenix are both great ideas. Megacities in the desert. What could go wrong?

  17. Saying cities are artificial isn’t exactly true; they are as real as anything else created by man.

    Better to say they are not self-sufficient. No one is, but life on a farm can be pretty close.

    ******

    I have the “interesting” situation of moving from near a small town of 20,000 to near a big city of 2 million soon, due to a job change.

    I am tasked with adjusting my survival plan from bug-in, to bug-out.

    I hope to befriend a farmer whose farm is about 60 miles from this big city. I have always wanted a farmette, or to work on a farm, so this could be my last opportunity to do so, and learn many of the self-sufficiency skills I am lacking. If he seems to be friendly to survivalism, I could have a chance to set up a bug-out location.

    I just can’t afford a cabin and land for escape, in addition to our suburban house.

    1. True enough regarding the technicality of the word “artificial”. Was attempting to find the right words to imply how cities are so dependent upon other systems – seemingly more-so than other areas due to the concentration of population density. Most everyone is in a similar boat though… dependent upon other systems, regardless of urban, suburban, and even rural (although rural makes it easier to minimize some of those external systems if one chooses)…

  18. This is only a little off-topic. There was a special on National Geographic last night, which I taped and have almost finished watching. It was about corruption in California’s water resources. “Water and Power/California Heist.” According to the documentary, Stewart Resnick is a billionaire and controls most of the water in Kern County. One corporation owns the water, buys it from the state for one price, sells it back to the state for more than double what it paid for it, uses tons of water to grow almonds and other crops that take a lot of water and denies it to its own employees who make minimum wage and have to buy bottled water to drink, cook, bathe, etc. I can’t begin to tell you all the corruption they disclose. Hopefully, they will repeat the program so you can watch it.

    There will be another documentary on National Geographic next Tuesday called “Parched.” Looks like it will be worth watching.

    1. If billionaires and large corporations continue to buy all the water and deplete the lakes and aquifers, we won’t need a solar flair, pandemic, or nuclear war to get into a SHTF situation. California is most at risk. I wouldn’t want to go anywhere near CA.

    2. Daisy K
      Dh looked it, it replays again on Dish-net work Saturday 7:30am, he is recording it for us.

  19. I used to read a blog of a working girl in NYC, who eventually got married and had a kid. She wrote that they do not own a car, her husband has never even driven a car his entire life, they rely totally on public transportation. I thought that a bit terrifying. NYC would be horrific in a disaster.

    1. PattyFiona,

      Your post about the family that had never owned/driven a car reminds me of back in the ’70’s when my department was recruiting on college campuses in the northeast. Many potential recruits were hired from that area with the understanding that they must learn to drive and obtain a drivers license before graduating our academy as a requirement of employment.

      Like those you described, no one in their families had ever seen the need for personal transportation, relying on cabs and mass transit their entire lives.

      In contrast,I learned to drive in the hay fields at 9 years old. Too young to handle the 75lb hay bales, I was relegated to driving. I guess that would point out another difference rural/city life.

  20. No matter how you look at it, cities are not where you want to be when TSHTF. You can do everything right, have supplies for a year, are able to defend what you have and yet the cards are stacked against you in more ways than you realize. Does anyone remember what Breezy Point looked like after Hurricane Sandy went through. Somewhere a fire started and swept through Breezy Point. From an aerial view it looks like a wave of fire burned down every house. Houses were built so close together that even the prepared didn’t stand a chance. It would be like trying to light one match in a book of matches and hoping that the rest don’t catch fire.

    A few years ago there was an apartment fire that was started by a candle in one apartment. Everyone in the building lost their home because someone else in the building was careless. It would be the same in a condo. Cities are nothing more than ticking time bombs that sooner or later can bring disaster to those that live there.

  21. Gosh y’all are depressing me.
    I live in a suburban wasteland of a very large city. Maybe I am seeing the situation through Rose colored glasses. For me there is nowhere to go; yes I drive and have a car. My neighborhood has become diversified over the years, and I feel we stand a chance. Lot’s of people from third world America’s (central and south), and these people are able to sustain themselves on little. People who have had nothing, lived through wars and tolerated more hardships than I will ever know.

    While the observations made here about supplies and utilities not being delivered is correct, I feel some aspects of SHTF scenario are being blown out of proportion.

    People can endure very harsh conditions for sustained amounts of time. There were people living in Aleppo the entire conflict, and it don’t get to much more SHTF than that debacle.

    So don’t count out the city dwellers just yet. I will do what it takes to hold what is mine for as long as I can. I will do the unthinkable, if it lets my family live another day. Will it be hard, sure! But don’t count me out as long as I draw a breath.
    Thank you.

    1. @Tex N, No, I don’t mean to depress anyone ;)

      While on my road-trip I felt compelled to resurrect this article (modified it a bit from a previous posting) due to my observations as I travel between cities and rural areas.

      I observe LOTS of 18-wheelers supplying the various cities and it struck me (again) how cities seem to be especially dependent upon these supplies, given the large numbers of people who live there with little natural resources to survive themselves.

      Another example while on 81-South today heading towards Knoxville I noticed that 81-North had been closed (entirely!) and there was a LONG, LONG backup for miles and miles of traffic – most of which looked to be 18-wheelers. Apparently at 2:30 this morning one of these rigs had caught fire and they closed the road down until this afternoon. It struck me how all of those countless trucks were being delayed and causing issues somewhere along the line.

      Just a microcosm of how bad it could be, ‘if’…

  22. I have noticed a common thread in most posts and I also write as if TSHTF is just in some near future. But I think it is happening now in both the city and non city. Most everything man has constructed for convenience and survival is in decay but it is more evident in the city. All writers here have cited examples of system failures including cultural. All societies historically have failed and we do not learn from the past only now the human race has exceeded its ability to feed itself. The cities/rural areas can not regenerate itself enough to escape extinction (yes extinction) this time. I am not a prophet but I told you so, wait and see! Watch humanity grind down into a slow disentigration – I believe there will not be some catastrophic SHTF event.

    1. Yes, it could indeed be a ‘slow grind down’ rather than a spectacular crash. Personally, I hope that it’s slow and I can live out my life without catastrophic failure of this system, however I’m preparing either way ;)

      1. You bring up very good points. And I do agree with you that there are those in the preparedness community who tend to immediately ‘write off’ suburban/urban dwellers in a real SHTF collapse.

        ‘If’ ‘it’ ever happens, there will be those who successfully bugout, there will be those who unsuccessfully bugout, there may be be those who find a way to survive there, and there will be those who do not. The thing is, there will also be those in rural zones who will also not make it. So many variables that we should not lump it altogether (type of collapse, extent of collapse, geography, demographics, resources on hand, etc., etc..). Thanks for your comment.

        1. Thank you for your thoughtful comment. I apologize for venting my frustration on your blog sir.

          Please have a good evening.
          I appreciate all I have learned from very kind folks on here.

          1. Tex N,

            Understand your frustration. While I do live in what many would consider an ideal location and fairly well prepared for most likely shtf situations, I firmly believe that survival is more dependent on mindset than any other factor. The truth is, none of us will know who did it right until a year after a total collapse. What we can do is observe, listen, and learn as much as possible from as many sources as possible.

            Don’t get frustrated. You will see posts by people that have no clue or, are passing on knowledge gleaned from questionable sources. File away everything in your mind. Try to put into practice what you can. You will never have to much knowledge. Some of that knowledge will never be used. Just because it’s not used doesn’t mean that it’s useless.

  23. It’s like the Coal Severance Tax in Kentucky….Coal severance Tax is taken in the state and has built Lexington/Louisville and Frankfort…..The golden triangle while the coal producing counties have remained at poverty level for over 100 years.

    Seriously folks if we had to grow our own food while our dollars that could have lifted us went to major Ky Cities…SHTF and we won’t be able to tell a difference in what we live like today…..Except in Southeastern Ky and Eastern Ky we will be warm…fed and acting like nothing going on….While the cities go to hell!

    1. Miner

      Hats off to you sitting there on your bag of coal and seeds. Like many rural folks during the great depression, when asked how happy they were that the depression is over said “what depression”.

    2. THAT’s IT! People who live the lifestyle of frugality, from what-ever need, will be able to adapt to the roadblocks placed in their way. Ancestors came from coal country of east Tn..and thrived.

  24. @ TexN, Perhaps you’ve to some degree summarized a foundational premise of “prepping “,or being prepared, in one of your first statements. “People who have had nothing can sustain themselves on very little ” These people from third world countries.
    A primary motivator behind the “prepper” community is being prepared to reduce collateral damage to ourselves and our families, should an event occur which would render us to an existence of third world status.

  25. I am another one that agrees with TexN’s first post listed above:

    The place I work has many people that are first generation from foreign lands that see the U.S. in general as the Promised Land. Many did not come here to escape famine or war. Many came simply out of a lack of opportunity in the country of their birth. Things changed and their future was uncertain (ie. the fall of Communism in USSR)

    A majority of the first generation people I work with are some of the hardest working people I have ever met so I try to help answer their questions and help them adapt to life in my hospital and within their hometown. I see a bit of my grandfather in many of these people and I see the flow of some into this country as a positive influence on our society and my place of work.

    These people are always grateful for the help and try to repay you usually in the form of home made food from their country and culture. At times, they miss their homeland and few have the opportunity go go back to visit. Within the U.S. these folks stand out and will sometimes gather with others from the same country to stick together and form a safe neighborhood to raise their children. ( Chinatown Syndrome)

    These 1st generation workers within the U.S. are an inspiration to me and serve as a reminder that I do not have it so bad. In fact, I have it pretty good. They are smart, resourceful, observant and their values revolve around their family. These sound like values that we all try to live up to when I read this site.

      1. Yes, hard working people are good and help build this country. Just do not want more welfare leeches, law breakers, and ones that want to obliterate the Constitution. Join this country and adopt this language and the historic moral values of the people. If immigrant’s intentions are to always stay in there cultural enclaves and fight against our laws, then I do not want them here. – Hard maybe but America first.

    1. That phrase “first generation” is too inclusive. It includes illegals and muddies the burden that Americans face with illegal aliens.

  26. Here in East Texas we get hurricanes every now and then. When we get a hurricane for a day and a night the roads are bumper to bumper and shoulder to shoulder with tens of thousands of city people fleeing the storm. That’s what it is going to be like during a collapse when the food runs out in the cities. The city dwellers that can are going to be coming to the country, fleeing riots and mayhem, looking for someone or anyway to feed them. Most will just be looking to survive but many will be dangerous. The survival instinct will always show up when people get really hungry even if it is the first time in their life’s says the old swamp rat.

  27. Cities are for young people willing to risk it all.
    So many older people that work in cities commute.
    I didn’t take the time to read all the comments.
    Just posting from previous and current experience.

    I travel to the city – rarely.

    Once upon a time, I had to go to Long Island.
    I had to pull over to answer my phone in Manhattan.
    Port Authority told me to move along.
    I told them I was a lost farm girl from pennsy abiding the law by not
    talking on the phone and driving.
    The look of terror on their faces! (I’m a jeans and t-shirt kinda person).
    I told them I was trying to get to Long Island and got side tracked by all the one way streets.

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