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majorrich's avatar

Are you a 'Prepper"?

Asked by majorrich (14634points) November 27th, 2012

I have been watching a program on Television about people going to extreme lengths to prepare for disasters of various kinds. They stash away insane amounts of non-perishable foods, water, weapons and other preparations to wait out or escape an apocalyptic disintegration of or society as we know it now. I have found myself stashing away a little extra ammunition because I see rapid escalation of pricing and the possibility of government limitation of my ability to protect myself and my family. We have always had a pretty full pantry, but are not going bananas like these people. So I consider myself Aware, but not necessarily a Prepper. As an Eagle Scout, I can teach and survive a number of scenarios so my level of alarm doesn’t approach these folks.

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16 Answers

livelaughlove21's avatar

…not I. Seems a little more…well, crazy than safe or prepared.

Imadethisupwithnoforethought's avatar

I have every confidence that in a real end of the world scenario those personality types who hyper prepare for the end of the world now will likely be killed in their sleep for their stuff in an actual doomsday event. So no.

Bellatrix's avatar

No. I am much too disorganised to do this. I am not so concerned about an escalation of any armed threat so much as the likelihood of some form of plague like disease. I remember watching a doctor on the TV who said we should all have a stash of food, water, medicine etc. for when the ‘plague’ comes. He argued it really isn’t an ‘if’’ so much as a ‘when’ thing.
Still… his words did not inspire me to start hoarding tins of food etc.

PhiNotPi's avatar


I would like to add that those people have a really messed up sense of risk management. They believe that a worldwide collapse of society poses a bigger risk than things like driving in a car, or contracting heart disease, or dying of cancer, which are the largest killers of Americans. They are afraid of a series of F5 tornadoes destroying America (I saw part of that episode) when they are more than willing to hop inside a piece of metal that is traveling 60 mph a few feet away from other cars traveling the same speed in the opposite direction. One of my local elementary schools had to hold some sort of memorial service a few years ago because so many of its students were dying of drunk drivers running lights.

Also, I think that they don’t have a very good “grand plan.” So, a nuclear war occurs, they go inside a bunker and live for an additional 20 years, they exit the bunker, and now what? There is nothing left but a barren wasteland. They don’t know how to maintain their technology, and there’s nobody left but themselves. They would have a pretty doomed life.

Tachys's avatar

I live in an area that can be cut off easily in winter, so I have a pantry pretty well stocked. I could probably go for a few months. For me, it’s peace of mind, like money in the bank.

Sunny2's avatar

I ask myself whether we have enough food to survive the several weeks, or whatever it, is to survive a disaster and the answer is always, “Yes. We’d have some weird meals, but there’s enough.”

jrpowell's avatar

I have about a weeks worth of food and water and the supplies needed to make a fire. I can make it a week. But unlike the folks on Doomsday Preppers I have the stuff in the event of a earthquake. They seem to be planning for things like virus outbreaks and nuclear war or financial collapse.

They are crazy, I have simply taken a course in college about the geology of Oregon.

augustlan's avatar

No. I worry much more about every day dangers than the collapse of the world. If I know a big storm is coming, I make sure we have enough water and candles, but that’s about it.

LuckyGuy's avatar

No . But, I am prepared for disasters and can easily last a couple of weeks at the drop of a hat. Since I have an unlimited supply of wood and a year’s supply of heating oil, I can keep warm for a long time.

It costs very little to have a few weeks of food on the shelves and 10 gallons of gasoline in the garage. Rotate the stock periodically so it is always fresh. Easy. Everyone should do it.
@majorrich An Eagle Scout. That says a lot. All good things.

SuperMouse's avatar

Nope. I am a child of the cold war; we were taught that it is best to go in the first wave.

wundayatta's avatar

It’s pretty much a waste of time in an urban area with access to many resources. I guess in Long Island they learned they should have stockpiled a bit more gasoline, but how can you do that? They also learned the advantage of having a generator, but again, how much disaster insurance is worth it?

In my community, the electricity has not been off for more than eight hours in decades. When it’s time to restore power, we get power first, because there’s more people here. We live on a hill, so no flooding. Well, minor flooding—at most an inch in some parts of the basement. We don’t put anything directly on the ground.

We could spend $3000 for a gas generator and a lng backup supply, but we might never have to use it. If we did have to use it, it might be for a few hours. Maybe a day at most. Is that worth it?

As to guns—forget it. That is the stupidest form of insurance you can get. It is more likely to kill you than protect you. Guns are not serious, as far as planning is concerned. What they are is symbolic. People who feel comfortable due to symbolism—well, it’s just sad. And dangerous for the rest of us. But the constitution is a potent symbol, and that’s what people hold in their hands when they hold a gun.

Give me electricty and water and food any day. You can go eat your guns, for all I care. Oh, and if you were thinking of taking my food with those guns, forget it. We’ll share it with you. For free!

bookish1's avatar

Nope. I’d be effed in the A without insulin, anyway. I am alive thanks to industrial civilization and I know my limitations. I’d rather die quickly than have to live with astronomically high blood sugar and clouded vision and mental processes for weeks before a heart attack or ketoacidosis finished me off.

augustlan's avatar

@SuperMouse Growing up just outside Washington, DC, we always said, “Well, at least we’ll get wiped out first…no radiation sickness for us!” Cold war gave us odd things to be thankful for, haha.

SuperMouse's avatar

@bookish1 there was an episode of Doomsday Preppers where a mother and daughter were both type I diabetic. They had enough syringes and insulin to help them survive for like six months (if I remember correctly). They built an underground bunker on their property where the hid the stuff. That particular family was preparing for a series of F5 tornadoes hitting the midwest.

Silence04's avatar

I am not a “doomsday prep’er” by any means. However, I do go backpacking/hiking/camping and understand the importance of having a survival bag (aka bug out bag).

I keep my backpacking pack loaded with all my gear and 72 hours of food at all times. If there is any reason for me to pack up and get out, that’s all I need to grab.

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