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26 August, 2015

Food Shortages Causing Violence and Looting in Venezuela – Are You Ready for That to Happen Here?

Military patrolling supermarkets during food shortage to prevent violence
National guard patrols a supermarket in Caracas.
Things are still looking quite desparate down in Venezuela, giving us yet another example of why emergency preparedness and storing food, in particular, is very important and a wise way to live one's life. We take for granted the fact that we live in a wealthy westernized country, where this kind of scene is rare. It lulls us into a false sense of security, thinking that such could never happen here. But it has happened here in the past. 

Long soup and bread lines were common during the Great Depression as unemployment skyrocketed, following a debilitating stock market crash not likely to be unlike the one many are warning us could be heading our way again very soon. The difference between now and the 1930s was that back then we were a much more agrarian society. 

Most people knew how to grow their own food, and preserve the surplus for the winter. Many had moved to jobs in the city during industrial boomtimes, but they had grown up tending farms. The majority still had family living on farms to whom they could reach out. My family finds its roots in coal mining, but even as late as when my mother was growing up in the 1960s, they tell stories of all the kids in the family going to stay at an aunt's farm every summer. Our world simply isn't like that anymore. 

Looters running amok during food shortage, killing one person
People carry goods looted from a supermarket in San Felix in the state of Bolivar, Venezuela July 31, 2015.
We've moved so far beyond an agrarian life that the vast majority of people in our society are literally incapable of taking care of themselves. Very few people, especially people in their 20s-30s, garden or can their own produce, and the small percentage who does only know how to do it as a passing hobby. And, making things even worse will be the fact that an entitlement lifestyle has become so pervasive in our society that many believe it is the responsibility of others to take care of them

Just like is happening in Venezuela, some will be docile and stand in long lines waiting to be fed, while others turn to looting and even violence. The severity of the situation and how long it goes on will dictate the severity of how extremely the average person reacts. If things go on long enough, don't think for a moment that the thin and fragile veneer of polite society won't disintegrate into nothingness. 

Human beings are animals, albeit very advanced and intelligent ones, and history has shown us that those struggling to fill basic human needs for themselves and their families in harsh conditions have even turned to cannibalism in the past. Knowing that we have it in us to go to such extremes when necessary should remove all naivety about the likelihood of people becoming violent and looting, etc. for what they need. Nobody is going to peacefully watch their child starve. They will take what they need and, if things get bad enough, kill whomever stands in the way. 

Don't put yourself in the middle of that, having to rush out into such chaos to gather supplies for you and your family. Every family, even if they aren't serious about Prepping, should have a few weeks of non-perishable food and bottled water stored away against the possibility of temporary emergencies. Something like that makes sense even simply against the possibility of blizzards, hurricanes, and other natural disasters that happen all the time. Add to that some basic supplies: a propane camp stove, lanterns, some rudimentary first aid supplies, and the means by which to protect yourselves, and you will be miles ahead of the average person when it comes to increasing your chances of surviving harsher times. That will be sufficient to get you through most emergencies, even if you don't believe a long-term emergency is headed our way. Add to all those some knowledge about old world things, like gardening and canning produce, and you're exponentially increasing your ability to survive something much more serious and ongoing.


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  1. I just received a $200 order of Mountain House Freeze Dried pouches, am awaiting on another $200 order to ship, and will order another $200 next week. Adding these long shelf life meals to my supplies will give me some piece of mind going into September this year. I already have on hand a lot of food, gear, ammo. I have a garden and I work on a farm. So food should not be a problem for me. Additionally I just put sixty pounds of ice into the bottom of my chest freezer in case the power goes out. It will keep my 30 pounds of Bacon and other frozen meats cool for quite a while in case of an outage... Living in a quiet small town neighborhood I do not want to be pegged as "That guy with the generator..."


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