July 25, 2021

"I’ve never been a prepper, not even of workweek meals portioned into Tupperware or for the written part of my driver’s exam."

"I didn’t inherit my dad’s apocalyptic preoccupation. I always figured that if the big one hit the Cascadia subduction zone, I’d rather go down quickly than draw out the inevitable while eating dehydrated food and becoming dehydrated myself. But the realities of climate change are slapping me in the face... They’ve forced me to reevaluate my indifference toward prepping. But I do not know where to start.... I’m reminded of the clip-on crampons I bought after a winter storm four years ago, when I’d slipped and injured my wrist. They are still in their packaging, a waste of the money I don’t have much of, and a waste of steel and plastic that will end up in a landfill.... Despite my father’s insistence and my mother’s example, I still haven’t packed a bug-out bag. Perhaps I can’t bring myself to truly prepare for the worst-case scenario. It’s not lost on me that this has been the problem all along: We, collectively, have been unable to internalize these possibilities for the future, our future." 

From "My dad’s prepping for the end times. Climate change makes me think I should, too" by Karleigh Frisbie Brogan, who lives in Portland, Oregon (WaPo).


Ann Althouse said...

Robert writes:

I recommend, for all the panicked climate change freak-outers (and for anyone else), Bjorn Lomborg's 'False Alarm' take-down of climate hype.


He convincingly makes the case that trying to 'prevent' climate change by de-carbonizing the world's economies is a fool's errand. The costs are just too high, and the odds of success are too low. You expect China and India to re-impoverish their people now, by doing without fossil fuels? Not happening.

Everything climate change will bring is manageable, and at far (FAR!) less cost to society than trying to do without fossil fuels in the absence of realistic alternatives. Act like humans always have: adapt to the circumstances. Build higher dikes, move some farming north, buy air conditioners in cities without them, etc. The world is getting richer by the year, and these things will be comparatively trivial in cost (and also effective) when needed, as long as we don't impoverish the world by doing away with fossil fuels before developing real alternatives. (Windmills and solar cells are not real alternatives.)

Packing a bug-out bag might be good therapy for some folks, but it's just plain stupid.

Ann Althouse said...

Gavin writes:

"I think this is wonderful that liberals are finally digging into becoming self sufficient and learning needful things about survival. I live up in fire country up in Sonoma I have seen many blue state liberals become more normalized having to prepare "bug out bags", thinking through the essentials they need to take, buying generators. I think there is an unused part of our brain that gets exercised having to do things outside of fretting about CRT, "rampant transphobia" and all the other imaginary hobgoblins the modern liberal worries about. Planning ahead is healthy!"

Ann Althouse said...

Owen writes:

"This person’s mental travail seems familiar. The prepper industry is glad of it, as are the media who depend on ever-greater panic titrated with despair. His invocation of “climate change” is both an embrace of what he thinks is certain doom and a denial of it. Because “climate change” explains everything and therefore nothing; it is the postmodern secularist’s version of “Acts of God.”"

Ann Althouse said...

Ed writes:

"Preppers usually prep toward some model of WTSHTF. Nuclear war, say, or The Other Party, damn them, declares martial law, or an EMP collapse of the grid. There's a crisis with a certain shape. Outside of Hollywood, though, is global warming/climate change seen to be like that? Both science and common sense suggest it would creep in over a century or so, manifesting as crises similar to ones we already know, but gradually more severe. More and worse hurricanes, some think (others not). But if you're in coastal zone, you should have a bug-out bag for hurricanes anyway, even of the classical kind. The sea is rising at about an eighth of an inch a year. You just might see it coming."

Ann Althouse said...

Omaha1 writes:

"I found the title of this post funny, regarding the Tupperware leftovers. My husband died on a Tuesday (in 2015) and I was informed of his death that afternoon, while I was at work (we had people in and out of our house doing painting and stuff). Of course this was very traumatic and I screamed and cried and denied as one might be expected to do. But...this probably tells you something about my weird priorities. One of the things I emailed my co-workers about was the three lunches I had already stored in the breakroom refrigerator for the rest of the week. I didn't want my containers to be thrown away, when the fridge was cleaned out on Friday. It is strange the things you think about when confronted with a severe personal crisis."

Ann Althouse said...

MJB Wolf writes:

"I’m mystified by these articles struggling to make “climate preppers” a thing, similar to the strange people valiantly letting the “commercial farm” go to seed and deluding themselves that they are *doing something to save the planet* — although it begs the question “from what?”

"Yes the god they serve is mentioned, Climate Change, but the evidence that our ever-changing climate is an existential threat to our actual existence grows thinner every year. The oceans failed to rise as predicted. Snow still falls in great quantities despite headlines it was a thing of the past. And not one organization that claims Climate Change as their mission will criticize the only two countries building coal-powered generators and pumping CO2 into the sky like crazy. Which is, to summarize, very much like the churches that shy away from teaching sin is hated by God. Fear of the truth sends your congregation a message that maybe you don’t believe your own doctrine.

"So this article ostensibly about a guy, who’s dad had a “go bag” ready in case of fire or earthquake or other emergency, who has finally come to the belief he should prep for an existential disaster is just more propaganda aimed at me. As if I the reader might suffer the same epiphany and prep like him. Say I do. What pray tell does one put in a back-pack to be ready for Climate Change? And how does taking a productive farm and making it unproductive help the planet? Won’t local stores now need to ship food in from a farm farther away? Climate hysteria is one of those luxury avocations only a rich society with tons of free time can waste newsprint and money on. "

Ann Althouse said...

Hunter writes:

"Not a prepper myself, but I can understand the desire to be ready to survive a sudden catastrophe which would put the basic workings of society at risk, A nuclear holocaust, or an EMP which fries the grid and all our electronics, would be prominent examples.

"But climate change? Even if the worst scenarios come true they will happen over the course of several years (more likely decades) during which time society will continue to function and people will be adapting as best they can; I really don’t see how a large supply of canned food will help with that."

Ann Althouse said...

Temujin writes:

"So here's what's happening. People on the right, what some would call the 'far right', have been buying up guns, ammo, dehydrated food, generators, water filters, and other goods for years. In this past Covid year, the left (what some would call the 'far left') has joined in. Booming gun sales are no longer a purview of the right, and definitely not just something men do. Leftists are buying up guns, women are buying up guns and learning how to shoot. And the left is now jumping into dehydrated foods, and other goods. Lose power in California during a summer rolling black out? It'd be nice to have a solar generator.

"The right is feeling civilization falling apart socially and structurally (I agree with this view).
The left is feeling the world is in dire danger due to global warming.

"The 'end of world' industries are booming right now. Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are here to help."