The rebuilding of society after a catastrophic event is something that we have not explored @ SurvivalCache until now. Regulator5 takes a hard look at the worst case scenario and what it will take to rebuild for the future. Please join in on the discussion.
We have all discussed the need to establish stockpiles of food, water, fuel, ammunition, along with other items and equipment to ensure our personal (and family) survival in the event of a natural disaster, or worse, a TEOTWAWKI (The End Of The World As We Know It) event. I have even written a few articles to bring some of my thoughts and ideas to the table for discussion and hopefully, even some learning. I am going to direct this article as more of an editorial and opinion to bring to light some thoughts I see “under discussed” by most of the preppers I have spoken to.
While preparing your stockpiles and learning the skills needed to survive a long term event, plan for the reestablishment of society. I may use terms that some will find confusing or even rail against due to their personal beliefs; I only ask you think about the idea and look past my personal vocabulary.
Our personal survival is only the immediate reaction to the event at hand. During a regional or local disaster, like a tornado, flash flood, hurricane, earthquake, or even a small scale terrorist attack; these are the skill sets and items needed to survive. In the rare case of an actual TEOTWAWKI, our preparations must be much more in depth and far reaching. I had touched on this briefly in a previous article but wanted to expand on this to generate more comments and ideas based on this subject.
While serving in the military, I knew the chances were at least even that I could be killed. I was not alone in this knowledge; most who serve do so with a greater purpose than themselves in mind. We know that survival is more than just “coming home”. Most volunteer for the survival of their families, neighbors, communities, nation and civility; this last part may seem odd with the violence of war, but when the fighting ends, we hope to return to our normal life. In recent times, the threat of war has not deterred people and nations from becoming or acting uncivilized to their fellow man. Soldiers “know” that even if they “fall”, their nation will survive; which is what makes it possible to do the things they do. None want to feel their death will be in vain by knowing their sacrifice went unrewarded by the “death” of their nation. I feel this is the root of the bond that forms among the members of military units, some more than others.
The Reestablishment of Society
I suspect that after such a catastrophic event and societal collapse; there will be 6 months to a year before we can rebuild. I base this on a few theories and ideas:
1) We should be able to maintain some semblance of order, even if only on a local scale.
2) Our infrastructure should remain relatively intact, barring an outright military invasion/war
3) The gangs and “warlords” should be routed and only the people wanting to bring society back will be left (my hopes).
We will still have renegades and outlaws, as we do now, but I have faith in the people to withstand the onslaught of the cowards in gangs and the bullies who plan on preying upon the others because they lacked the foresight, courage and competence to prepare themselves. Many small towns and communities may be unaffected by the event, other than losing power due to national power grid failure. They will also be spared the burden of most of the gangs initially but only in the beginning, as the unprepared have to move on to find an area they have not already plundered. The time free of this cancer on society will allow for the implementation of defenses and maintaining some semblance of civilized society. The People must use these “safe zones” as the foundation blocks to rebuild the nation.
By utilizing our existing infrastructure, we will not have the 200 years of building a nation from the ground up. We should be able to rebuild within a decade of the event. I know the government has plans in place and supposedly the “experts” for rebuilding, but we all remember the fiasco of even such a regional disaster as Hurricane Katrina. We also have history from Somalia, Iraq, Sudan, and countless other examples from the past to demonstrate that the current power players are incapable at producing any positive results in rebuilding a society.
Something to think about would be having textbooks on hand for teaching our children after the event. We only think the education system is broken, but at least they are able to teach most children the basics, such as the alphabet, basic math, and reading. Some may be lucky enough to have textbooks on hand from their children if the event occurs, but I like the older textbooks personally. They are more complete, more honest (in my opinion), and seem to use a simpler approach to educating.
Libraries will be another asset that will be looted and their books burnt by ill prepared people looking for heat and cooking fuel. Depending on the event, we must preserve our literature for future generations, as these will contain the knowledge and experiences of our Founding Fathers and those that built the nation with their hard work and courage.
Council of Elders
I feel that the Elders of your group will bring a vast knowledge and experience base to the table. We all have family or close friends that may or may not be able to perform full duties on the security team, but may offer other skills and experiences to the group. My granddad passed away during my tour to Iraq in 2008, but he was a superb gardener even in his 80’s. He was a combat vet from WW2 and even though physically would have been challenged to perform defensive combat duties, his experience could have been used for training for a TEOTWAWKI type event. My other Granddad was a mechanic and passed along that skill to all of us who would listen. These Elders also have such a vast well of knowledge about what has worked and has not worked in the past, whether by personal trial or the government exacting laws and regulations that were eventually dismissed or repealed. We must tap that knowledge when we reestablish our government and return to “normal life”. We should not repeat past mistakes and with several thousand years of “learning” by past societies; we should be able to rebuild into the “more perfect union” envisioned by our Founding Fathers.
Elders have been looked to since the beginning of time by villages and tribes to make decisions for the entire population or at least give their insight to the chief to aid in his making the decisions. Our current government model follows this idea loosely; advisers are picked more on connections, favors or group affiliations instead of knowledge, ability and intelligence.
Elders are not necessarily the oldest person, but anyone who can bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the table and the ability to share this with the group. Remember, after the event is over and mankind can rebuild, these will be our individual representatives to the “Constitutional Convention”. We will need thinkers and doers and people not easily pushed aside to stop our ideas from being heard. They will need to be diplomats and “parents” (being firm but fair and capable of educating others).
Community Emergency Response Teams
These teams are already established in some cities and/or counties. The CERT program offers training, usually for free, and helps people prepare for disasters and be prepared to help their families, friends and neighbors if such an event happens. If you do not live in a locale that has an established team, check with your state’s Emergency Planning department to help set one up for your small town. The teams can be organized through your town, neighborhood, church, etc. This will help create a foundation for people to link together for the common good and common defense if a TEOTWAWKI event takes place or a major SHTF event at a local or regional level.
These teams can be very loosely organized or very organized (preferred). Everyone in the teams would bring valuable skills, knowledge, and ideas to the group, as well as adding to the Search and Rescue ability of the community. If no major disaster strikes and the worst scenario the team is used for is locating a lost hiker; we as a society are still better off.
If everyone on the teams feels the same about prepping, they will offer a stronger and well rounded group for a major calamity. If not everyone feels like prepping, some probably will and this will give you contacts that may have been missed if not given this avenue of discussion and acquaintance.
This is by no means an exact theory, just my opinion. I hope to open the dialogue and hear what others add to this discussion. We are currently working on starting a CERT team via our Church. I know some preppers avoid religion and I will not push my beliefs. The bible says to do charitable works and I see this as being able to accomplish this item and get others involved in prepping. As for being prepared for defense at the same time, “They which builded on the wall, and they that bare burdens, with those that laded, every one with one of his hands wrought in the work, and with the other hand held a weapon” Nehemiah 4:17 KJV.