Friday, July 22, 2011

Survivalist or Prepper?

My life partner has told me many times Never defend a fixed position against a superior force. He added that the inevitable result of defensive warfare is surrender. If you find yourself in a fair fight your tactics suck.

All of this sounds pretty bleak to civilized folk, but that's actually sound military strategy, used for thousands of years. Think about a siege being laid to your homestead and how long you could hold out. Evasion and guerrilla warfare actually gives a weaker force the advantage. Mobility and skills will aid the survivalist.

I asked him once about that as I go walking every morning, armed with bear spray, what if I should meet a pack of dogs. I know not to run. Climb a tree, fight with my hiking sticks, and scream like hell.
Wouldn't I be defending a fixed position? I asked. He said just don't let them be the superior force.
Bottom Line, I am a survivalist. I would do whatever it takes to make it.
I read another blog posing the question: What is the difference between a prepper and a survivalist? and which one are you?

I thought about this and decided my first reaction to the word Prepper is it sounds like the word preppie. Way too yuppie. I'm told the media responds better to the word Prepper. The word survivalist scares them.
Since I'm not trying to impress the media, or talk anyone into prepping, I don't care.

And, what is prepping? Storing tons of goods in a fixed position? I am storing up some stuff, true, but more as a hedge against the incredible food inflation we're seeing now. With all the drought, heat waves and fuel price disasters, we know food prices will get much higher.

Survival, on the other hand is more about learning everything you can to supply your needs, in whatever situation you may find yourself. Urban survival is scarier to me than wilderness survival. Humans are capable of such violence, often unpredictable, and usually unreasonable.

But back to this post. I am into survival studies and skills. I prepare for disaster, but have no plan to go down with any ships, be part of any hunger strikes, go off the cliff with Thelma and Louise.

Survivalists would be finding a wooden table on the Titanic when it was discovered there were not enough life rafts to go around. They will eat food to stay strong for fight or flight. They would bail out of the convertible before it went into the Grand Canyon. Sorry girls, I'll just hide out at the bottom, alive.

Most likely civilization will continue in some form, but there are no certainties if it will have power, transportation unless by foot, or communications unless written and delivered by hand. There is no telling how much freedom we may be required to give up in order to participate in it.
Just a few thoughts here while I enjoy the luxuries of electricity, a full belly and bottle of clean cold water.


  1. I'm entrenched and hoping to avoid any confrontations if things fall apart. I plan to "shelter in place" here on the mountain. If I were younger, I'd have more flexibility but as it is, I'm putting all my eggs in one basket.

  2. I totally understand that concept, Arsenius. You sound like you're well prepared, too, and would give any looters much to think about. No doubt there are easier targets than yourself all over the place.

  3. I know not being able to displace is a real weakness. It's just one I have decided to accept. If things are bad enough to drive me out of this isolated location in the mountains, where would I go?

  4. Its not that I think anyone would take over our place, and live here, its just that they may be roving through in large numbers. The ability to hide out until they pass if they were a superiour force would aid in your survival. Remember the Alamo.
    As I get older, I'll be thinking more in terms of the gopher in its hole, with a second door to escape instead of a bird able to migrate.

    Good thoughts, and discussion.