By March 4, 2012 Read More →

We Can Be Our Own Worst Enemies

By RedHorse_Ronin

Fear

Fear

 

FDR once said, “The only thing we have to fear, is fear itself.” Now I am far from being a fan of FDR, but his words ring true and inspired a nation that could have succumbed more completely to uninformed panic than history shows us that it did. I have long been a political animal, posting and blogging on forums and boards and it has been my observation that many people are scared of the future, scared of their own ignorance, and frustrated at the lack of control over their own destinies. We see this whenever any polarizing person or event comes to prominence. For many, Clinton was evil incarnate. For others, Bush was the next of kin to Himmler. For others still, Obama is a muslim antichrist that is intent upon turning us into socialist slaves. I will not opine on those positions, except to ask, “How many of the fears were actually realized and how many were exaggerated in our own minds?”

With polarizing personalities, creeds, and events, come counter movements. These movements run counter to the mainstream and by that definition, are arguably deviant. Deviance attracts others eschewed from the main herd. Malcontents, fear mongerers, extremists, the emotionally insecure, and paranoids all gravitate toward movements that run counter to the herd’s direction. They join with the legitimate members of the movements, hoping for a form of acceptance that the greater herd has denied them.

I see that with our community. At heart, we are a movement that is a cross-section of a growing political movement that shuns the status quo and seeks some form of self reliance. No matter where we fall in the political spectrum, we see a need to prepare against exigencies that while we may not be able to articulate them, we instinctively know that they are increasingly possible. As such, WE become the deviants, in terms of thinking and acting differently from the mainstream.

Most of us manage this and are still able to function within the greater herd, to varying degrees. We have plenty of evidence that reinforces the necessity for our creed and actions. We do not have to look far for such evidence. We certainly do not have to conceive of scenarios that beggar credulity to justify ourselves.

We do not have to monger fear and paranoia to rationalize our beliefs and actions. One of the reasons that counter movements remain counter is that they feed the stereotypes that are perpetrated within the herd. Legitimacy will not be won by continuing thusly. For example, the herd looks at the 9/11 Truthers with skepticism, at best and many times with scorn. Yet the Truthers carry on with, IMO, outrageous claims and little support. They reinforce the bias against them. They fail to consider that, yes, the government has little regard for liberty. No government does. It is the nature of governments to accrue power unto themselves. However, no government is efficient so how could they pull a 9/11 conpiracy off without human nature asserting itself and revealing it to the herd for personal gain?

Now apply this to our movement. The public is content to graze on the taxpayer pasture and we upset that with our, mostly, quiet beliefs and actions. We do not fit their preconceived notions of militias and neo-nazi encampments of PTSD Vietnam vets holed up in cabins in the mountains. We disturb them because, in many cases, we ARE them. This is how we reach people and convince them of the rightness of our creed and actions. We show them how we can be a healthy part of society.

What hinders us from reaching many? When we monger fear amongst ourselves and when we irresponsibly put unproven information out there for our own consumption, we begin to think and act the way the herd is predisposed to think of us thinking and acting. We have little to prove to each other on these boards and forums. The fact that many of us are participating, is encouraging and educational. We learn more from reason, than we do fear and paranoia.

I know that many out there are excoriating me by now and are calling me naive or worse. So I pose this question to the paranoid and the fear mongers; what would be an effective tactic to sow distrust and discord within the movement? Perhaps putting in chest thumping ringers and seminar posters to feed the fears? Just something to think about…



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5 Comments on "We Can Be Our Own Worst Enemies"

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  1. Ron says:

    Very well said. The fear mongers and whack jobs have always been attracted to the path less taken. Most of the time, to the detriment of the real movement.

  2. JJ from Indiana says:

    Red_Horse

    At last a voice of reason and moderation. I have watched the first few episodes of “Doomsday Preppers” and I could not help but cringe. The producers definitely made the people on the show to seem a bit less then totally sane. In fact if you notice at the beginning of each episode, the main fear of the preppers featured is always mentioned in passing as hardly ever possible. IE, the magnetic poles switching, complete economic collapse(though they were not as dead certain on that one) ETC. I have been preparing in moderation for an emergency. Not any one specific thing, Just taking precautions. I have cousins in from Henryville who lost their house but are physically o.k. This is the kind of thing I prepping for. The really bad stuff may happen too, but it does take a world collapse to need to be prepared. I vote for Republican candidates more or less and declare that in the primaries. However, I realize that Clinton and Obama are not evil incarnate nor was GW a saint. They are men who look at a problem and want to solve those problems differently.

  3. KentUB says:

    I have to echo JJ’s remarks and throw out a thanks for the post. As bad as Doomsday is at portraying the movement in the hopes of boosting ratings, it is drawing more and more people to search out places like APN to find out the rest of the story. When they find reasoned information and discussion, especially when they find something they can possibly relate to, it truly makes them think about where they would be if any one of hundreds of things happened around them.

    If just a few percent of the population would do something as a result of some web searches out of curiosity, I would say that the movement has made huge progress. One thing I was relating to a friend the other day was my thoughts about how many people died or suffered in the wake of Katrina simply because the Emergency Response was so overwhelmed due to non-preparation by average joe. There was a huge amount of time and money spent responding to what I would call non-emergencies and I know that lead to response delays for real true emergencies. I myself do not want to be one of those people that tie up or rely on first responders. They will have too much to do in a true emergency or not be available at all.

  4. knightindullarmor says:

    people are already marching on wall street. china owns a didproportionate amount of the US stock market. our government(s) do not consider, letalone promote the will of those it governs. the majority of the 300+ million americans will be dead 4 weeks after a power outage affecting the east coast.

    to not prepare for ‘the worst’ is to be idiocically blind to the world around us.

    can anyone with an understanding of history not make comparissons to todays USA with the colonies’ of the 1770′s? taxation without representation? the local and federal government pretending that G. Washington’s, T. Jefferson’s, G. Mason’s, J. Maddison’s, B. Franklin’s, J. Adams, et al… ad nasium ‘s statements regarding the 2nd ammendment DONT have any bearing on today’s legislation?

    We live in a nation where the government does not consider, letalone honor the will and needs of those it governs. In a SHTF situation, that government has demonstrated that it by not considering the needs and wants of those it governs, it will trample their/our rights and ignore the US constitution (katrina).

    we are one solar flare or stock market crash or OPEC price hike away from pandemonium and total chaos. there is legitimate fear. it’s 100 times greater if you have children under the age of majority that you are responsible to care for and protect.

    it is NOT an unreasonale fear. it is unreasonable NOT to be afraid.

    my $0.02.

  5. Ctrygran says:

    I agree as well that the Doomsday Prepper show has made a mockery of those who are genuine and concerned individuals who are trying to prepare for real situations. We live in Alabama – tornado alley – and after Katrina we were one of the few who were blessed to have power. We had a family of 6 come to stay with us until the power was restored. Had we not been prepared we would have all been hungry! I would rather be one of the ones who is made fun of or ridiculed because of my beliefs both Christian and Prepping than one of those who is left out in the cold (literally) when the situation changes.