Friday, November 9, 2012

What Are You Holding On To?

Dan and Sheila Gendron, Contributors
Activist Post

Tell me what actual benefit you receive from living the “normal” lifestyle –  a 2-hour commute to work each day, spending 8 hours in a corporate cubicle that removes your individuality and creativity,  to receive a paycheck from which the government has taken its huge and undeserved bite from leaving almost enough to cover your bills and expenses –  just so that you can live in the kind of house and drive the kind of car that your friends and relatives think you should live in and be driving.

We all must admit that for some strange reason we don't really understand, we feel a profound sense of accomplishment when we get approved for a mortgage, get a new credit card, or get the “big promotion” at work. There is a scene in the movie Brazil, (a version of 1984), in which Michael Palin lifts his mask as he is about to begin torturing Jonathan Pryce and says glibly, “Confess quick – you don't want to ruin your credit rating!” 

We strive, we sacrifice health, family, and well-being for the opportunity to be a better slave. 

The undisputed truth is that you have been conditioned to need your pain.  But when you come right down to it, all the aforementioned conditions involve your  humble, pleading, acquiescent and compliant servitude.  Huxley said that the ideal circumstance would be for the slave to be contented with his slavery (paraphrased) – and here you are.

I understand that there are those of you who truly love the system and would hate to see it go.  It's not my intention to say you are wrong in your pursuit of happiness. But if you find that you are not fulfilled by spending money you make from being employed by working in a cubicle (or any job you hate), then, really, what are you hanging onto – and why?

The system to which you are clinging is about to betray you. One legal precedent the federal government uses to impose income taxes upon an individual is the concept known as “implied benefit”.  What this means is that even though you may have never used any of the plethora of benefits that the local, state and federal governments offer you, they are there for you should you need it. And whether you use them or not, there is the implied benefit that you could do so.  That concept is about to come crashing down on your head.

You need only look at hurricane Sandy (not to mention Katrina) to see what chaos it caused.  How many thousands of people are still suffering without power (because non-union workers are being turned away) and still without shelter, food or water (because the FEMA office is “closed due to weather”). 

Where's your implied benefit now???

Many people have chosen to leave the system behind and try to achieve the self-sufficient lifestyle.   Even amongst them, there are “varying levels of commitment”.  

It seems that those called “preppers”  anticipate the need to be prepared for unforeseen catastrophes – war, earthquakes, bad weather, economic collapse, pole shift, planet X, et al – in the belief that somehow at the end of the tunnel everything will return to the way it was back in the 1950s; an idyllic, red-white-and-blue America.

Personally, we are getting ready to shut everything down very soon, so I won't mince words – in our opinion, there is virtually no hope for civilization as we know it today to recover from a total collapse in the span of a few years. A few generations would be more like it.

A survivalist is preparing now to be self-sufficient as a permanent lifestyle, whereas a preppper tries to buy enough supplies to carry him or her over the hump, most of whom we have spoken with assuming 6 to 24 months will do it. 

We don't have to go back as far as Egypt and Typhon 3500 years ago to see how long it takes to recover from a collapse.  There is plenty of history to show us, including a thousand-year period after the fall of the Roman Empire (commonly known as the Dark Ages) before the Renaissance came along and people were ready to learn new habits (like hygiene, reading and science).

Look up the collapse of the Argentine Peso in 1999 – still in chaos 13 years later with no real relief in sight.  So, in our view, if in the recent past we can document what a complete collapse looks like, then the belief that any American collapse scenario would involve getting back to “normal” any time soon after it, is not based on solid ground.

We strongly suggest, whether you are considering being a prepper, a survivalist or not sure what you want at this point, that at an absolute minimum you begin as a dedicated prepper.

Good preppers always have storage foods, supplies, a bug-out bag and such.  That is a good place for anyone to start.  But look beyond that for your survival.

Social Security payments, welfare, food stamps, disability entitlements, pensions, etc., etc., can be swept out from under you in the blink of an eye, and you will find that you have been holding on to thin air, like that from which our current monetary system itself is created.

The only things you can truly hang on to are your own abilities, your own intuition, your own physical labor and enough self-love to know that you deserve to live a fulfilling, comfortable and secure life of your own choosing without harm to anyone else.  If you think that not everyone can do that, you're right.  Only those who choose to do so, can.

Read other articles by Dan and Sheila HERE.

Dan & Sheila are the authors of Surviving Survivalism – How to Avoid Survivalism Culture Shock, and hosts of the free podcast, Still Surviving with Dan & Sheila. For questions about space in their Intentional Survivalist Community or other survivalist issues, they can be reached at

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Anonymous said...

The article starts with solid points and turns into snake oil. Yes---people need to get off the cell phones and start looking ahead, like people had done for tens of thousands of years. But the whole world is designed for people not to be prepared for anything. It's a trap. Now that's a thought worth thinking about. This phony davey crocket prepper stuff is not serious. I need to be more prepared for the sake of it, not for the fairy tale of it.

I should also say that it's not non-union workers that were rejected, simply. The military was non-union and lord knows they rolled into without issue. The people that weren't allowed in "the zone" were independent of the program, or operation, being run. They could have been in a huge union with the greatest benefits in the world but they weren't getting in the show if they weren't in the script.

Anonymous said...

Everything we need to know for the future our great grand parents knew as daily life.

People need to decentralize resource management away from interstate and global control into more local and individual solutions.

Just remember....
What you can't control... will be used to control you.

Anonymous said...

This article asks "Tell me what actual benefit you receive from living the “normal” lifestyle..." then goes on to list all things that suck about a typical corporate job. I agree, those aspects do suck. But to answer the question, here are some of the benefits off the top of my head.

1. Health Insurance for the whole family
2. Matching 401k contributions
3. Paid holidays
4. Paid sick days
5. Pension for life (if you're lucky)
6. Nice material items, car, TV, and various iDevices
7. Convenience Factors - want a new car, house, boat, or something else you cant afford? If you have a boring job and good credit you can easily have these items, just tack on some more to the monthly expenses
8. Paid Jury Duty
9. Paid maternity leave

I could go on listing every perq that comes to mind working a boring creativity killign job, but that's not really the point. The point is that the benefits are numerous, and while they may not compensate the horrible commute and cubicle lifestyle for some, they clearly do for others.

True it may all come crashing down at some point, but economies dont collapse overnight like a natural disasster. They give warning signs. Watch out for bank holidays, capital controls, and rising interest rates. You've got years before the US is in any serious danger.

Putting together a disater kit for some basic family survival should an earthquake or tornado hit is a fine idea. But quitting your job and losing all the creature comforts, benefits, and convenience factors so you can become a "dedicated prepper", is kind of insanse. Actually it's a lot insane.

Anonymous said...

Recent graduates: Food doesn't actually originate in the supermarket.

All that is needed for the global economy to truly hit the skids is another year of widespread crop failures. I expect a significant downturn to become evident in early August of next year, as it becomes obvious crop yields are going to miss the mark --again.

Got groceries?

Anonymous said...

so how long would it take to form new habits as the author calls things like hygine, reading of the renissance? after a collapse/ disaster? if there was no one there on the "fringe" to begin with maybe never as deep a hole humanity has dug for itself.

i would have to lean on the side of the author, maybe not from the viewpoint of a prepper, or survialist, but on moral human grounds. My family and i did leave a "good" job with (fraud)401k and insanely expensive health plan(we have never had to use, as we realize health care is OUR duty to ourselves)you can argue emergencies, but our previous $5,000 hospital deductable on a $700/m plan! now willfully allowing yourself to be robbed like that- that is insanity!

WE moved our family out of the city, and get by meagerly as farmers, and strive to learn new things every day that would benefits us should the grid go down or another drought, or any slew of things that could impair civilization as we know it...

we did this not out of fear, or hatred for the 9-5 or city living (i miss many aspects of urban dwelling often)but we did it out of moral obligation and love for the land, ourselves and our kids... to learn to do for yourself on a bit of land is invaluable, to create lasting bonds with your community and family, to never stop learning and teaching and to treat the earth with reverance and love. we are not off the grid, nor do we scorn various modern amenities,(i am writing this on my computer, using my wireless modem to do so) yet we are well prepared to do without should the need arise.

and in the event of an economic BLOWOUT which is where we are heading, along with poles shifting and various other nefarious dealings with the devil we are building up to a point of stagnation at best. when we get there if NO ONE knew how to do for themselves and was willing to share knowledge, experience advice and skills, we might be looking at another "1000" years of "dark ages"

the thought that being off grid means giving up cultures dear creature comforts is so laughable. we are a nation of spoon fed whining brats, akin to 8 year olds nursing mamma still. Humanity is going through symbolic puperty with tempers hormones demands self centeredness.... how we teach and nurture this transitional stage will determine the outcome of the next century.

i know there are a lot of "truthers" out there so scared by UNs agenda 21 that they scorn all that is environmentally sound and sustainable- but consider this: wouldn't you rather live this way out of CHOICE than DEMAND from an army wielding unelected buracrat? three generations after the great depression, we have been persauded to forget the past; "creature comforts" such as television helped that effort immensly.

so call me "alot insane" but in my book if it ain't natural it's fleeting illusion, as our so-called society has proven. ten- twenty years from now those you call insane may be the wise ones leading the peons out of the dark ages...

the amish have survied and thrived as "survivalists" for centuries- are they all whacko too?

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