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2/28/12

Doomsday Preppers Open Thread

Well, it looks like there are only a few episodes left on the slate for this season of NatGeo's Doomsday Preppers. I've been disappointed that the show seems to be moving more towards painting the preppers as friendly, mostly harmless yet hopelessly paranoid people on the fringe of society.

Here's your place to share your thoughts about the episode--any creative ideas that you saw or things that you learned. Comment away!

40 comments :

  1. Survival condo...??? WTF?????

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  2. The survival condo was pretty cool. Buckskin man was portrayed as an over the top nut job. I am hoping that it was just the way it was edited. What I am having trouble with is the people that refuse to properly arm themselves. To me it seems as if these people are not based in reality in what it will really be like if the SHTF. Tomahawks? Really?

    Ray Ray

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    1. The survival condo was one of the better profiles that they've done--the guy seemed to have thought things through in general, and it looks like there's a demand for million-dollar ICBM silo condos. I would hope so, for his financial sake.

      I've seen the condo on other shows--a special on some nightly news show aired recently--and Doomsday Preppers presented him and the condos in the "best" way.

      My wife pointed out all the crazy crap that rich people waste money on--fancy cars, yachts, artwork, etc.--so it's not a huge stretch to imagine someone dropping a bunch of cash to own part of an ICBM silo. At least it would come with good bragging rights.

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    2. Why everybody so down on tomahawks? I realize theyve been done to death over the last couple years buy as a survival tool/weapon they are hard to beat! Think about it....our pioneer fathers, native americans and even our european ancestors wouldnt be caught dead without a tomahawk or at least a small hand axe! Its actually a very versitale, multi use tool, cutting task, chopping task and causes horrible wounds in people and animals...a lethal weapon if used properly! No...i wouldnt go up against firearms dual wielding tomahawks...but if i had nothing else, if myvweapon malfunctions and cant be cleared immediately or in a close quarters hand to hand/knife fight...the tomahawk is devistating....plenty of dead white men could attest to that fact. Good choice is a removable head version, the head can then be used as a hand held blade, ulu...plus the shaft is replacable if broken...how many other everyday cutting/utility tools can you say that about?

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    3. Oh I'm not down on 'hawks--they certainly serve a purpose, lot of versatility. A number of SF guys use 'em, largely for entry purposes but also as a backup weapon. For combat, a spike hawk is preferable--the spike can penetrate kevlar helmets and bullet proof vests.

      The issue is just having a 'hawk as your first and only line of defense in favor of any other option...just a bit silly.

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    4. Roger that, most definitly not a primary weapon...long gun, shotgun, handgun..then anything sharp and pointy!

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    5. Nothing against the tomahawk but if that nutty lady from Utah--who prepped for her non-existent family and was worried about the Mormons talking over the world--could hit a target at 400 yards. What good is your tomahawk going to be against one BG with a bolt action?

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  3. "...moving more towards painting the preppers as friendly, mostly harmless yet hopelessly paranoid people on the fringe of society." Meanwhile the wall of tactical gear at my local Cheaper Than Dirt has been replaced with bulk food storage which you see just after you walk past the help wanted sign on the door.

    Unarmed and hungry benefits us... how?

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  4. The one thing I learned was that each and every one of the people who chose to appear on that show urgently needs to make a prompt visit to their local proctologist for immediate treatment of severe rectal-cranial inversion.

    OpSec! OpSec! OpSec!

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  5. Opsec be damned, it's about profit.
    The condo guy I saw 2 years ago in a 2012 end of the world show, he hasn't made much process.

    Pandemic buckets for sale! Most people are on there trying to make a profit, can't blame them if it makes money do it. However the pandemic kit was bullshit, those masks wont filter anything out, they don't have an airtight seal. Someone needs some professional help, germaphobe!

    I don't understand the no guns from anyone. Sure you can run out of ammo but at least it gives you a combat multiplier while you have some.

    The one lady spent 30k in the last year on prepping, I wonder if most of that is in $400 grab and go buckets. The 200sq ft. room didn't seem to have $30k worth of anything in it but hot air.

    What bothers me is it's all about the fringe of society. What about the majority of people who prep, have 9-5 jobs, are socially active, etc. Where are all the people who are in shape. I know, we don't have anything to sell and we are 'normal'.

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    1. I does seem like many of the preppers have related businesses--condo guy, obviously, pandemic buckets lady, and the bush-hippy guy from last night may operate some kind of school. What's in it for them is a trade off with opsec for free publicity.

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  6. Everyone is spot on in their opinions (so Far) Max makes an excelloent points. especially about Physical Fitness. If you are going to show yourself to the prep world at least be in shape. I may not survive an TEOTWAWKI scenerio, but at least I will go looking good and with my M4 in hand. TAMAHAWKS REALLY!!! I just can't get past the friggin Tamahawks

    Ray Ray
    Security Contractor Medic
    Afghanistan/ or Bad parts of the world

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    1. For what it's worth, the bush hippy guy did look to be doing some solid physical training in his "follow up."

      I laughed at the dual-wielding tomahawks, too. Really? Even from the bush-hippy perspective, you could go with a bow or a spear.

      The "shotgun" power of the throwing stick was a wee overstatement, too.

      Also silly was his "ambush" with a fake gun. So he realizes that aggressors will come at him with guns, yet prefers Cold Steel tomahawks? Really?

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    2. Uhhh... tomahawks can be an effective weapon IF you know how to use them BUT only if you've run out of ammo and have nothing else. I used mine to good effect when i was in the Army...

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    3. I thought it was funny watching him conduct the ambus drill. All three kids were in the room and only the daughter participated. The other two kids were not even looking to see what was going on. And the daughter was way too close when she had the gun to be giving commands.

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    4. My only thought was maybe that was his idea of opsec. Maybe he is sitting on a underground bunker of class IIIs and the whole throwing stick BS was a diversion or a backup plan...

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  7. Yeah guns are really great but there are some elements of society that are not allowed to have guns. Due to being a stupid, no it all 19 year old 35 years ago I am no longer allowed to express my 2'nd amendment rights without significant jail time. Even though I not even had a speeding ticket and am an upstanding citizen, business owener with a masters degree who probably pays more than his share of taxes and donates a significant amount of time and money to church and charity thanks to the gun control laws there is no longer any process for restoration of gun ownership. Sure I live in a state where I could buy weapons from individuals without any paper transfer but can't take a chance , way too much to lose. So I am one of those who has to depend on other means of protection such as knive, crossbows, tomahawks etc. I just hope when it does hit the fan I am able to procur some guns and ammo before it is too late.

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    1. Anon -

      I would look into both blackpowder and pre-1898 antique firearms as legal options for firearm ownership. While old school, a cap-and-ball revolver is better than throwing rocks. Pre-1898 firearms are not legally considered firearms--they're antiques--and are exempt from federal laws. Check your state laws, consult with a lawyer, but definitely a potential option for at least 19th century firepower.

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    2. In most states you can petition the court to have your gun and voting rights returned. If you've been an upstanding citizen for 35 years, you might even be able to have a felony conviction expunged.

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    3. And there is nothing to say you can't pay a friend to have a few extra weapons handy. (Not suggesting a straw sale. That would be illegal!) The upside of WROL is that our natural rights will be restored.

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    4. I think after one pays his/her debt to society they should be able to get ther 2nd admentment back. My neighbor has 5 felony dui's from his early 20's. Been sober and law abiding for 20 years and still cant own a gun.
      In most states you can still own primative weapons. Look into purchasing a black power gun. It'd have to be better than a tomahawk.

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  8. I understand your perdicament, What separates you from the the rest of the antigunners is that at least you are not opposed to obtaining a firearm in a SHTF, Crossbow is an excellent form of protection. I don't know how viable it would be for you but, you may concider having a family memeber buy and store it for you offsite.

    On an offnote, Is there anyone out there that plans on bugging in (in an urban Area)? The way I see it most people are going to the outskirts, eitherway, I see no difference, resourses are going to be limited wherever you go. and what it boils down to is Defense. I feel comforable in the city being that that is the way I am trained.

    Ray Ray
    Security Contractor/Medic

    Oh Yea I do have a plan and resourses to bug in but like most people I enjoy constructive critisism

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    1. I'm "staying in." Part of that's logistics and geography, there's really no way to bug out very far in my area. Part of that's because the outlying areas around here are already starting to fall apart and are having all sorts of problems, while here in town everything's good and looks to continue that way. The biggest part of it comes down to "fuckit this is my home and my town and I 'aint leaving." If things go to shit I'll work with whomever's left to fix the place up and get it going again.

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    2. If you can fortify your home, have plenty of supplies and help I think you could last awhile....Im just of the opinion that if the bad guys want it bad enough, have enough numbers andvthe time...they are going to get in eventually...you cant hold off against vastly superior numbers who are semi coordinated and determined no matter how well armwd amd supplied you are....if you are stationary that is. History is full of examples of this. The spartan 300, the Alamo....numerous examples even when the defenders were evenly/better armed and more skilled....youvwill simply he overrun eventually.

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    3. I think most bad guys will steer right past a functioning or semi-functioning town, with a police force, and maybe some spotters on water towers, and head for the outlying areas where the picking is easier.

      As it is, where I'm at the outlying areas are full of meth labs, chop shops, and pot growing operations and the folks that are associated with those enterprises don't like to come into town because they stick out like sore thumbs and there's cops. The county already can't afford to patrol properly and that will probably get worse as time goes on, but we have enough people in a small enough space that we can continue to pay for a police force that's larger than we really need.

      Other places will probably be different and you might be better off getting out of town,

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    4. Michael -

      This is a really good point. Many of the rural areas within two hours of my location are already hell holes with chronic drug, alcohol and poverty problems. Not exactly that kind environment you want to be in NOW, let alone without rule of law.

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  9. I'm surprised no one has commented on the last "prepper," the seemingly insane lady who was preparing for martial law.

    I know that the producers make 'em pick one catastrophe for the motivation, but it seemed like fear of martial law was really, truly her one reason for prepping. Her "friends" even looked at her like she was a nut job. Maybe it's a case of vicious editing, but she really did not come across well...really probably the craziest yet.

    HORRIBLE opsec, too - the view of the UT capitol building would make it trivial to figure out her location.

    Noted that she's in business school, almost certainly with little/no income, yet has spent a claimed $50,000 on preps. Crushing debt, anyone?

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    1. TEOTWAWKI, Thank you for stating what seemed to be so obvious. . WTF with that woman. Ok, the Federal Government takes over through the use of martial law. So, once martial law is enacted everyone just goes nuts and starts rioting, stealing and looting?!?!?!? If martial law is enacted, everyone's movement will be seriously restricted, dusk to dawn curfews and sever harsh punishments for failure to comply. If anything, crime and other related TEOTWAWKI issues would be curtailed due to harsh and instant punishment that would exist under martial law. If a crime was committed, there would be no investigation, search warrants, interrogations, trial and sentencing; simply detainment or worse. What does she think will happen? The troops take the city and then sit back and do nothing while everyone runs around killing, looting, stealing and shooting. I guess it happened in Iraq but that is sort of apples and oranges when compared to a nationwide enactment of martial law. The whole point of martial law is to exercise control over a large population by suspending constitutional rights, local government and civilian authority. While the thought of that happening scares the hell out of me, I do not see the risk of looting and rioting. If anything, I think her biggest threat in a martial law scenario would be federal or military personnel confiscating her stockpile of food and water. However, this risk is mitigated thanks to her strong OpSec procedures and ability to “fly under the radar” because she does not talk openly about her fears of a government take over. If martial law is enacted she can just sit back in her apartment and live off her stockpile for years with no one the wiser.

      By the way, last night Nat Geo started the show by talking about the channels inside look at American outliers. Outliers?!?!?!? That pissed me off. Basically what they are saying is that anyone who preps is an outlier. While I think most of these people on the show are attention needy and not the average pepper, calling the show a look at American outliers implies that everyone who prepares is an outlier. Leave it to the corporate monkeys at Nat Geo to take what could have been a useful show demonstrating the importance of preparedness and turning it into a spinoff of Taboo. What’s next preppers who marry their food cache, raise Xoloitzcuintli for food and barter and live in a hut made out of their own feces? It’s all about showing this community in the extreme for entertainment purposes. The result is that it paints all preparation minded peoples with the same brush and likely to scare off anyone who watches and may have previously thought of preparation as good idea.

      -DB

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  10. I think some of the opinions are missing my point (which may be my fault since this is my first time ever, replying to a blog) Tomahawks definalty have a purpose. But it is not my primary choice of defence depending on the situation. Buckskin man only had his tomahawks and a couple of sticks to throw at an agressor. And now that I think on it more and more after reading DBs' post I am begaining to think that it all may be due to the way Nat Geo edited the show. I have been working in Afghanistan the last 7 years and all I can say is TV has changed alot since I came home for an extended R&R.

    Gatta go my wife is getting after me to pack the beans (Hmmmm)
    Ray Ray

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    1. In an odd way, a tomahawk IS my 'primary' response weapon. I have one on the wall, within easy reach, next to my chair/desk. If my front door is kicked open, it is very likely to make the first intruder (No, not expecting cops, but the neighborhood is 'going downhill' - time to move to the boonies...) at least duck, allowing me an extra second or so to get a good sight picture with a more useful response tool.

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  11. DB

    If the Nat Geo corporate monkeys were smart I think they would have gone a different direction with things. I'm currently overseas so I haven't been watching, but from what I've read here the show is basically just a freak show. People will get tired quickly and the show will get cancelled. It usually takes millions and millions of dollars to find a new viable show so I doubt going the freak show route will pay off for Nat Geo. To me it seems like the real "core" fans of this show are preppers, who keep getting more and more ostracised by the show's "preppers are crazy-heads" general premise. There are more preppers than you might think--anyone into hiking, camping, mountain climbing, food storage, anyone whose a gun owner, anyone into investing in precious metals; all these people are a prepper on some level. And I think even people who don't place prepping as a high priority--I think most of them still see the value and on some level know they need to do a better job. This show seems to be alienating anyone who might want to watch. Instead a survival or prepper related show needs to have some good information. Here the only useful information seems to be "preppers are koo koo in the head"

    Look at Dual Survival. Its not the greatest show ever but its popular because you can get some real useful information. It also really tries to paint Cody and Dave (especially as Dave) as cool guys. On Dual Survival survival definitely isn't for crazy people. I guess Cody is there as a bit of a freak show, but even with Cody the narrator is always desperately trying to explain his "no shoes" rule as an understandable not crazy idea. Whether fictional or reality a show's foundation is likable characters. You can't last long if you constantly belittle and marginalize those characters. Even Man vs Wild (although I love Bear) which IS a freak-show--just a guy jumping out of planes, drinking pee, and chomping into giant frogs--even Man vs Wild doesn't belittle Bear. The viewer obviously will think he's nuts but they don't end each episode by saying, "while Bear survived his stay in Africa, most experts don't think getting lost in Africa is a very likely scenario." I can't wait to get caught up on Doomsday Preppers--mostly cause I want to confirm my strong suspensions that it really sucks.

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  12. There have been a few decent profiles, one or two altruistic souls who really do believe (I think) that sharing their life will help others and is the Christian thing to do, a few war profiteers, and a whole lot of nutz.

    I just wish the preppers didn't make themselves look crazy by declaring that such and such a disaster WILL HAPPEN. If it was clear that it will happen, then everyone would be a prepper. This Gnostic, "I have secret knowledge" non-sense is CRAZY.

    Lots of things might happen and no matter what the chances are that any one type of disaster MIGHT occur, history show a 100% chance that disasters will occur during the course of our lifetime and a 99% chance that at least one disaster will touch "my life". I wish someone would communicate this to NATGEO

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  13. Can you get those "Throwing Sticks" on Cheaper Than Dirt's web site? :D

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  14. "Tactical Throwing Rocks" are way more readily available... and free...just pick one up, aim and throw!

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    1. Note: REAL tactical throwing rocks are spray painted black or multicam.

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    2. And they come with sights integrated.

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  15. Sad thing is I bet if you painted some rocks black, put them in an action themed package and called them tactical....they would sell all day long...hahahah

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    1. LOL... how does the domain name "tacticalrabbitsticks.com" sound for my next business venture :) ?

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  16. To show that preppers aren't crazy I would like them to show how the gov't is prepping.

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  17. i usually enjoy doomsday preppers. i can usually find something useful in each segment even if it's something not to do. that buckskin guy was a real hoot tho. eating roadkill, bringing a tomahawk to a gun fight, throwing sticks? really? presenting his kid with it's own afterbirth as a trophy for making fire. watching him it is no wonder why so many people look at preppers as nut cases.
    there were some very good episodes like the guy in cali that turned his backyard into a prolific garden, or the farmers back east that grew so much food. they proved that you don't need guns to make their survival plans interesting. i respect their choices and admired their prepping even tho i would have added firearms ro protect their hard work.

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