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Survivalist / Prepper or what?

When I was starting in prepping everything was over in the US and there was only a few of us in the UK. We classed ourselves as Survivalists because the emphasis was on living in all weathers outdoors. We all had massive Rambo knives, I still have mine, and we all knew how to start fires with the fluff from our belly buttons. The emphasis was the US dream of living off grid and keeping your head down from an oppressive government.

It isn’t quite the same over here and over the years most of us have come to realise that. There isn’t as much country to hide in and most of us will never be in the situation of having to live in all weathers outdoors because the fact is there will be plenty of property intact in the UK in almost all of our survival scenarios.

The emphasis now has shifted from survival to preparing. We prepare for our scenarios by putting aside water, food and clothing. We put aside matches, fuel and cooking gear that we can use in our survival situation but in reality we are just prudent. We put aside food for the lean times, we ensure that we have the equipment we need to live if anything goes wrong with our lives. Be it we get snowed in for a few weeks or society collapses.

Survivalist has a negative sound. It really is moving back to the wilds. Living in the bushes and hunting little animals. Prepper doesn’t have that yet and can still easily be associated with the Boy Scouts. ‘Be prepared’ None of them are seen as lunatics but sensible and respected.

My view now though is that most of us don’t need to be labelled with either of those labels at all. A survivalist may be seen as a die hard Rambo type, a prepper is seen as a bit strange, someone who spends their life worrying about something that may never happen and spending money to cater for that. I don’t do either I only know the basics about navigating by the moss on trees and I don’t worry too much about what is going to happen at all.

I considered myself just a normal person who just keeps slightly more than most in my pantry. I have a big pantry and like to keep it filled. I also don’t like running out of things but don’t see that being any different to how things used to be. It is almost as if we now prize stupidity and ignorance above everything else. Those that are not stupid and ignorant are pilloried and mocked. It seems there is a role reversal in our society where we are now actively trying to reduce the IQ of the population. A similar task that Stalin and Pol Pot set out to do last century. Driving their countries into the ground in the process. Darwin never included the Socialist effect into his work. I think I see why as once we move beyond the survival of the fittest and we start to control our society to the extent that we can ensure survival regardless of fitness we find that our society dumbs itself down until it probably balances it out and our society as a whole starts to become unfit for survival.

As far as labelling goes I see it that;
A Survivalist is someone who can survive out in the wilds with very little equipment.
A Prepper is someone who prepares for an uncertain future even putting aside items they may never use.
A Normal Person is someone who lives a normal life whilst preparing for an uncertain future. Regardless of how much they store it is all stores that they can and will use during normal living.

Based on that most of us are normal people, because some of us have been doing it so long we are starting to acquire items, just in case. Items we may never use yet have spent money on. That crosses a line and makes us preppers. There are few Survivalists in the UK and no need for any imo.

9 comments to Survivalist / Prepper or what?

  • iaaems


  • bigpaul

    i think a normal person these days are more sheeple than anything resembling a prepper, normal people do not prepare for an uncertain future, they think their lifestyle is sustainable and will never end and if anything bad happens” the govt will provide”, wheras preppers KNOW this isnt true, preppers are people who prepare “just in case”, it is better to be in charge of your own destiny than to leave it in the hands of some “civil servant” in Whitehall.

  • prepper1

    Hmmmm yes, I would’nt class myself as normal abnormal maybe!!
    Normal nowadays is like B.P. says methinks.
    Prudentalist sounds good.
    It is after all only prudent to stock extra food and stuff that makes life easier when it gets harder.
    If your concerned though about whats happening in the U.S. with their prepper movement, maybe it’d be wise to change our monika to Prudentalist uk ?


    Prudentialism is a moral principle based on precautionary principles that are acting to avoid a particular negative effect.

    For example, acting in self-defence or, indeed, pre-emptive attacks on “rogue” states.

    Prudentialism is also a philosophy of constitutional interpretation that considers laws and powers from a pragmatic viewpoint.

  • prepper1

    Pragmatist uk???


    Dealing with things sensibly and realistically in a way that is based on practical rather than theoretical considerations.
    Relating to philosophical or political pragmatism.


  • Northern Raider

    Homesteader seems more apt, someone who likes the convenience and security in being well stocked not only with grub, but tools, spares, bits of useful kit that can make a terrible winter bearable. Someone who only wants to cut firewood once a year so they build up a pile big enough to see em through the winter. Someone who will want to go to work or the shops even though the roads are flooded of covered in 4 ft of snow. Just someone who can continue uninterupted if the power goes off, or the taps stop flowing, or the hospital is closed or the fuel pumps dry.

    • trailblazeruk

      Have to agree with Northern Raider as Homesteader sounds accurate for what we do–in general.

      Although I class myself as Survivalist as I practice Survivalist skills and It gives me great pleasure and confidence to know that I can indeed Cut, make and use a fire bow drill to make fire any month of the year. (Sad really-but my Dogs are impressed each time I do it)and can indeed live off the 40 acres of land for at least 3 weeks in reasonable comfort in Autumn/winter (thats the max time Wife allows without whining to help with her Horses).

      I am fortunate to have 40 acres of private woods (with a lake and stream and Wood shelter and Wood burning stove to play in/with and an understanding Wife (Understands too well I think!)Who allows me “MY” time to practice and live in the woods whenever I can

      I do prep,plan,practice and beleive I have a survivalist mindset but dont have a big Gun or any reason other than curiosity and pleasure to do these things for some 40 years now both in military and sivvy.

      Normal–ish for me I think is to be a “Homestead Survivalist”

      Plan for the worst-hope for the best–and its great fun!

      Take care


  • Northern Raider

    One could indeed call SD many things, but NORMAL never springs to mind 🙂

  • Skvez

    Most of us (on this site) put away a few items that we may never use.
    Items such as water filters, spare plumbing bits to convert our houses in the event of a long term loss of mains water, thick woolen blankets to get us through the winter if we had no primary heating (but not suitable for use in ‘normal’ times).
    A prepper is someone who prepares either with knowledge skills or items for events that are historically uncommon (I was going to put “low-probability events” here but some of things we prepare for are not low-probability they just havent happened recently so normalcy bias causes sheeple to think they are low-probability).

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