Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Chicken Little weren't no prepper...

Chicken Little wouldn’t make a good prepper; being an alarmist or allowing events and conditions to rattle you past the point of being able to deal with them is not a good thing.  If you are of the mindset that regularly extrapolates the absolute possible worst case scenario, extravagant in its horror/outrage from the most innocuous of statements or incidents, you are in serious trouble. 

Example:  'death panels' will be instituted by the government...there's nothing in any health care initiative that calls for such a thing, despite claims to the contrary.  (Besides, they already exist in a way in the bureaucracies of insurance companies in which people are rewarded for kicking people off the insurance rolls, or treatment is denied as 'experimental' when it's not and somebody dies, or people undergoing chemo lose their insurance for supposedly underpaying premiums by one penny.  If it's OK for a private company to do it, why would it be wrong anyway for the government to institute the same methodology, especially when conservatives preach the sacredness of the marketplace?  But, I digress...)  If you go from ‘it’s good to reimburse professionals who give end-of-life information, such as living will info, advance health care directives, etc.  so that people can make informed decisions before they are forced to or their loved ones make decisions without consulting them, and their loved ones know in advance what their desires are‘, to ‘death panels’, you are a victim of over-extrapolation. 

Surviving a serious situation if you can only extrapolate earth-shattering disaster from whatever information is at hand will be much harder than if you can analyze a situation without embroidering it beyond recognition.  You would logically have no good course available to you if you have this particular mindset, and until you realize you think that way and take steps to change how you think, you might as well forget making decisions about any major life choice because your ability to think through the information at hand is seriously compromised.

Pollyannas who ‘always rely on the kindness of strangers’ won’t get very far in a SHTF situation, either.  FEMA may someday redeem its reputation and become the agency it was intended to be (meaning no more former horse judges or inadequate communication with other agencies), but until it does, FEMA is not going to be able to save us from disaster and harm.  Strangers may be innocuous, but always trusting that strangers mean no harm is naive, to say the least, and trusting that the government will rescue you flies in the face of previous experience.

Somewhere between the two extremes lies the area in which best to function.  Now, before the SHTF, is the time to explore ‘what-if’ing' and create scenarios with which to practice how you’d react.   If you go to either extreme, either creating calamity or ignoring reality, consider looking at some of the decision-making tools at sites like this; your life, and that of your family and/or friends, may depend on your ability to think clearly, and there is no time like the present to begin sharpening your decision making skills.