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Welcome To The Wild Western World
‘Welcome To The Wild Western World’
“Sally has 14 Apples, Mandy has 9 Apples and Jimmy has 3 Apples. If they combine their Apples; how long will it take for Jimmy to realise that by putting two rounds in the back of Sally and Mandy’s heads he could have all 26 Apples?”
(Ok…firstly: I’m not out to deliberately upset anyone in any way. If you are offended by anything in this article then please feel free to stop reading at any point and write me a scathing e-mail, and the more inventive you are the more likely I am to actually read it. So, if you have particularly strong religious beliefs you won’t like the statements I am about to make and should probably read on just far enough to get some ammo for that e-mail you want to send me – Cypher9012)
Observations & Theory
Firstly, in order to write this article I have to make 3 observations. And these are:
1.) Human Beings are just a very complex type of animal.
2.) Being so complex, we rose to dominance in the Animal Kingdom.
3.) By rising to dominance, we put ourselves in our own ‘Zoo’ called; ‘Civilisation’.
With these observations as a basis let us consider the society we live in. Consider your neighbours, consider your friends, consider your workmates, and consider the people you see regularly at the local bar when you’re watching the game. They all seem like nice, ordinary folk don’t they? And so they should! They’re all happily going about their lives just like you, adhering to the forms and conditions of ‘The Social Contract’.
Now let me tell you about ‘The Social Contract’:
“According to Thomas Hobbes, human life would be "nasty, brutish, and short" without political authority. In its absence, we would live in a state of nature, where we each have unlimited natural freedoms, including the "right to all things" and thus the freedom to harm all who threaten our own self-preservation; there would be an endless "war of all against all". To avoid this, free men establish political community i.e. civil society through a social contract in which each gain civil rights in return for subjecting himself to civil law or to political authority.”
(Wikipedia Extract: The Social Contract)
So you see, when I likened Human Beings to animals in a Zoo…I wasn’t far from the truth was I? Now imagine we’re all in one big cage. As long as the bedding is changed and food and water are provided we’re all happy enough to pose and preen and do our bit…but what happens if the food and the water stop coming? What happens if the bedding isn’t changed and the keepers vanish? And we’re all in one big cage? Well…the ‘Social Contract’ becomes null and void…and we enter ‘Hobbes Realm’ where life is “nasty, brutish, and short”.
So now consider those neighbours, friends, workmates and bar buddies when there is no power, or water, or food deliveries, or medical care, or emergency response, or police force. Imagine that same list of people you know without the restrictions of the ‘Social Contract’. Now how many of them would you trust with your life? How many of them would you trust with the survival of your family and loved ones? And how many of them could you confidently say would take a kitchen knife and slit your throat for the food in your cupboards?
Hobbes Realm is a term I use to describe the world without the niceties. It is the place that the world will become if there is ever an Apocalypse, or a disaster on such a scale that it destroys the very foundation of society as we know it. And it is not that hard to imagine either…just turn on the TV or search the Internet and you can see images from that place.
Following local disasters there is usually a period of ‘Civil Unrest’. People seem to lose control and revert to animalistic behaviour which includes looting, random destruction, and in some instance even ‘Mob Murder’ committed against people who do not conform to the social standards of the mob. Now imagine that this disaster occurs in a time when the Army, the National Guard, and the majority of Law Enforcement individuals are elsewhere or otherwise occupied. Who is there to stop the riots? Who is going to confront and scatter the mob? And if there is not going to be a return to ‘Law and Order’ in the immediate aftermath of the disaster, then why should the mob stop or care?
This is the world after the Zombie Apocalypse. It is a place where you cannot dial 911 when the wolf is at the door and baying for your blood…it is a place where you could die from a simple infection from a tiny cut…it is a place where the psychopaths and sociopaths can roam freely doing whatever they please, and the only people who can stop them are those stronger or more determined than they are…welcome to ‘Hobbes Realm’
‘Survival of the Fittest in Hobbes Realm’
Now the term; Survival of the Fittest’ is an old saying. It conjures images of the brightest and smartest, and the strongest and most athletically gifted…but in ‘Hobbes Realm’ they are just more Meat-for-the-Grinder. The “Fittest” in ‘Hobbes Realm’ are people like you and me. Because if you are reading this then you are more than likely a member of the same Survival Blog, or Survival Wiki that I am, and you are reading this article on one of those sites, and if that is the case then you probably know more about what will happen in the initial phase of an apocalyptic event, and you are more than likely more prepared to survive than the rest of society who sit oblivious in their homes each night watching television and ordering take-out. But the problem is…those of us with a ‘Survival Mindset’ are not the only ones who are considered “Fit Enough To Survive”.
In a survival situation, those who will do whatever it takes to survive and overcome are also deemed “Fit Enough To Survive”. While the prepared plan and take measures before the event, there is a list of people who do nothing prior to the collapse of society, but their mental state and willingness to go beyond the boundaries of societal norms means that they will thrive and prosper in ‘Hobbes Realm’. And unfortunately for us, this list is not populated with ‘Nice People’.
Psychopaths and Sociopaths will have an advantage in ‘Hobbes Realm’ following the event. People willing to cast aside the façade of “Civilisation” and live moment-to-moment dealing with occurring situations with swift and violent solutions will more than likely survive. Those who have the ability, both mentally and emotionally, to kill, murder, loot and rape without any long-term, adverse mental effects will likely thrive and prosper in the hostile environment that the world will become post-collapse. And unfortunately they will not be the minority…more than likely we “Survivalists” will be the minority.
Consider Mister-A and Mister-B. They are both single men in their late 20’s. They work in the same office and have known each other since they were both interns over 7 years ago and have been good friends for all of that time. They have both professed an interest in “Survivalism” to each other, but what Mister-A doesn’t realise is that Mister-B is a Closet Sociopath…in fact, no-one does.
As a Closet Sociopath Mister-B has never done anything outwardly abnormal. He pays his taxes, mows his lawn, gives to charity, and goes to the local “Range” to shoot his .45. He seems to be the model citizen, but on the day that society crumbles and life becomes about survival, Mister-B plans to go over to Mister-A’s house, and using that perfectly legal .45, he plans to execute Mister-A and take all of his preparedness supplies in order to increase his own chances of survival post-doomsday.
Unlikely you say? Well let me ask you a question…If society begins to fracture and break down, and if the authorities and the government are otherwise occupied, then who is going to catch Mister-B? With everything that is going on, the CSI Unit cannot do a full sweep of Mister-A’s home and send of their findings to a lab. With all that is going on the murder may not be discovered for weeks, months, or even years depending on how bad the ‘Event’ is. And what’s worse is; Mister-B knows this! Mister-B has been just waiting for the day when illegal actions no longer have legal consequences, and Mister-B has been busy.
It is now six weeks after the Event. With the number of fatalities it is unlikely that Power and Water will ever be restored, and it is unlikely that the world will ever be what it was again. Mister-B now lives in a large house set within its own private grounds. He has a well stocked larder of food and water and ammunition because Mister-B has been busy. He has killed several people in order to get where he is today, and there is a young woman tied up in one of the bedrooms upstairs for later, because who can stop him? Mister-B takes a sip of beer from the bottle he holds as he stands on the balcony of his expensive new house, and then Mister-B dies suddenly. Mister-C lowers his rifle and signals for Mister-D, Mister-E, Mister-F G H I J K L and M to move up to the house. The Sociopath is dead…long-live the Gang.
Organised “Criminal” Gangs
As mentioned before, it is; ‘Survival of the Fittest in Hobbes Realm’, and unfortunately for Mister-B, he was alone. Mister-C however has 9 friends with him and they are all considered ‘Fit Enough To Survive’. Before the Event they were a ‘Criminal’ Motorcycle Gang, but without an available source of fuel they are just a ‘Criminal’ Gang, and without society to determine what is actually a crime and what is illegal, they are just a Gang now. And as they are armed and willing to do whatever it takes, they can take what they want, when they want, and will fight anyone who tries to take what they have, and kill and loot anyone who is weaker than they are. They are; Raiders.
Now some distinctions should be made at this point. Following an Event which causes the collapse of Modern Society, regardless of the type of disaster, if you have no food and water then there are three methods of gathering food and supplies and a different label for each type of gathering you do. These are:
1.) Scavenging – This is the act of entering uninhabited or abandoned buildings and searching and taking whatever you find in order to survive. This can be considered the GOOD kind of gathering as it harms no-one, threatens nobody else’s survival, and ensures your own.
2.) Looting – This is the act of entering an inhabited or ‘Claimed’ building when the owner is away and stealing their supplies. It is akin to burglary, threatens the survival of the people you are stealing from, and although it does no direct harm to anyone, you will most likely be killed if discovered. “Looters Will Be Shot”
3.) Raiding – Raiding is the act of identifying an inhabited place or settlement which has food, water and supplies, and then making the conscious decision to attack that place and those people in order to take what they have. Raiders by definition are; any individual or group who uses force or intimidation of force to take what others have. If the people abandon their building you are not ‘Just Looting’ as some may prefer to think of it…they left because of you and therefore you have Raided them.
So with these distinctions let us return to Mister-C and his Gang…
By killing Mister-B in order to take what he has they are clearly Raiders. They take all of his food, water and supplies and they return to their old ‘Clubhouse’ where they lock-up the supplies with everything else that they have taken, and they sit secure in the knowledge that there is not another group within 20 miles who can oppose them, there is no law to catch them, and no legal system to punish them. The only thing they actually fear is that they may one day attack a settlement and one or two of them may be captured and then killed, but it’s a risk they’re willing to take…
Now hold on just a minute! Take Mister-C with his leather motorcycle jacket and his 9mm semi-automatic and his high-powered assault rifle. Now put him beside an outlaw from the “Old West” in a long leather trench coat, a Stetson, a “Six-Shooter” on his leg and a Winchester in his hands…is there a difference between them?
Both of these individuals “Rob Banks” (Only the outlaw went after money and gold, while the Modern Raider goes after Food and Water…the post-apocalyptic ‘Currency’.). They both fear that they will be caught by the people they are robbing/raiding and hanged. They both run with men who are more like Brothers than just a random gang. They both decided to be on the ‘Wrong’ side of the Law, to take what they want rather than grow or gather it for themselves…and the only difference is:
The ‘Old West’ Outlaw had to worry about the US Army and the US Marshall’s hunting him down. But the Modern Raider doesn’t have that worry in ‘Hobbes Realm’. It could take weeks, months, years or even decades for some type of organised government to establish itself and begin bringing ‘Law and Order’ back to this region of the world where the Raider lives. The only ‘Law’ he has to concern himself with is a ‘Town Sheriff’ of the settlement he is raiding, and the only ‘Army’ he has to be worried about is the band of deserters in the next county who are doing exactly what he is doing over here.
In conclusion...life after an Event WILL be 'nasty, brutish, and short' because if there is no definable government and society really has crumbled, then all bets are off, all niceties are gone, and the facade of 'Civilisation' will be lifted to reveal the vicious, animalistic reality beneath. Because it is only the niceties of modern civilisation which keeps the beast within all of us in check, and without regulation it creeps to the forefront in order to help each of us survive. And if you ever want to see that beast up close just watch a group of young men on a night out drinking, because I have seen some true horrors committed by seemingly mild-mannered individuals when they lose control for just a moment...so imagine that control gone forever?
But here’s the thing...take another good look at your neighbours, workmates, friends and bar buddies. Of that group there’s a pretty good bet that you have at least one Sociopath hiding amongst them, and one or two potential Raiders too…but the majority of those people are just your normal, average, decent folk living their lives one day to the next like you and me. And while we with the ‘Survival Mindset’ plan and prepare for natural disasters, pandemics, and even the Zombie Apocalypse, they don’t.
So after the Event, after the Spread, after the Apocalypse, or even Post-Z-Day remember one thing: Human Beings are SOCIAL Animals! We are not meant to be alone, and we have a much better chance of survival following any disaster if we stick together and rely on each other for survival! Of course there will be ‘Predators’ and ‘Scavengers’ in ‘Our Animal Kingdom’, but the same was true thousands of years ago and look where we ended up! So by forming a group, and then building a settlement, and then forming relationships with others, we will be able to survive and thrive, no matter what the Universe throws at us.
(And if it IS a Zombie Apocalypse that finally brings society crashing down…remember to shoot them in the HEAD people!)
Latest page update: made by PedroAsani
, Apr 15 2010, 6:21 AM EDT
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|Cypher9012||Welcome To The Wild West-ern World||18||Jul 8 2010, 7:43 PM EDT by Godbuster|
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This thread is linked to the article: 'Welcome To The Wild West-ern World', which can be found either on the Home Page or by clicking the link at the top of this page. Please ensure you have read the article this thread is attached to before commenting. It saves time and misunderstandings later...Thank-You.
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