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Last Tuesday, February 7, 2012, a new show premiered on the National Geographic channel. It’s called Doomsday Preppers. A pilot episode was filmed in 2011 and received good reviews so they decided to run the show.
In the pilot episode they looked at 4 families of preppers. Preppers are people who are preparing for an upcoming major disaster, economic meltdown, war or other event that might possibly change the way we live and cause resources to be scarce.
They show the efforts each family is taking and at the end give analysis of their strengths and weaknesses. The efforts of each family lines up with their belief in the likelihood of a potential event. In this episode the featured families were concerned about a coronal mass ejection, hyperinflation/economic meltdown, or nuclear threat.
There were some pretty innovative ideas in the pilot episode. One guy in the Phoenix suburbs had turned his pool into an aquaponic greenhouse combined with a chicken coop on the shallow end and a tilapia fish pond in the deep end. Another had created a wood gasification system to run his truck and act as a back-up generator.
Most families wouldn’t go to these extremes, but we all could learn a few lessons from the prepper world. In the real world, unforeseen events do occur. We’ve seen enough of earthquakes, tornadoes, hurricanes, and tsunamis in the last few years to know that we need to have some level of preparedness and some basic planning. History teaches us that we’ve had it pretty darn easy in the good ol’ US of A. I think we’ve been lulled into a place of complacency.
I remember watching one of those shows where two families switch wives for two weeks. A trendy west coast city couple switched with a homeschool family in remote Iowa who homesteaded and practiced preparedness. The city wife said something to the effect that she lives in the city. She will always have food. How naive. Cities will be the first place food runs out. I think most of us would say that she is mistaken, but our actions show that we don’t really believe it. So, I guess it’s not just complacency, but really denial.
I think the new show is interesting although I disagree with a couple of things. The preppers are putting themselves at risk by revealing their locations and resources on national television. If something does happen then their security will be at risk. The other thing I’ve noticed is how every time they weigh the odds, the show says that all of the scenarios are unlikely to happen. I think some of them are very likely–particularly a financial meltdown.
If you have an interest in learning more check out Doomsday Preppers on Tuesdays 9pm ET/PT on the National Geographic Channel. I don’t have cable and they don’t appear to have full episodes of this series on the National Geographic site, so I watched on YouTube. Below are some videos of the show.
I’d love to hear what you think.
The pilot episode from YouTube user Offline922
Bullets, Lots of Bullets Feb 7, 2012. Video and audio could be better, but this is the only one I could find at the time of this posting.
Another episode, I Hope I am Crazy, aired on Feb 7, 2012. This has David Sarti, a very funny prepper I have followed on YouTube for a few years.
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