Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Roving Bands Of Mutant Ninja Biker Zombies? - Or Not?

A popular idea in the survival circles is the Golden Horde. Post TEOWAWKI, sheeple deprived of food, water, shelter would roam the countryside in ever-growing numbers to devour all in their path like a pack of locusts.

With the Great Depression there was (in theory) guaranteed work on the west coast, which caused large numbers of people to migrate west. Also, most of the larger work projects were out west, as rivers still needed to be damned, bridges built, etc. We don't have such public works projects, there is no shortage of workers for the fields of California. Simply put: there is no location to draw a huge number of people.

In the most likely non-natural disaster we face today, the socio-political-economic collapse of the US of A, we face a long slide rather a precipitous drop. So people will stay with what is familiar, what is comfortable. Most people will stay local, to live and die with family and friends.

Within communities I predict those with mobility, whether motorbikes, horses, or methane powered dune buggies, will roam and loot and steal and pillage. I doubt they would be able to muster farther than 30 miles or so without crossing another pack's turf. I'll steal a term from one of my favorite RPG's and use the term Go-Gangs to describe these groups.

I feel that the vast majority of people will be too weak from hunger and disease to get very far. Especially here in the Northeast, where farms are few and far between, and would already be stripped bare by the locals. Without the strength to traverse rough terrain, anyone on the western side of the Appalachians should be safe from refugees from NY or Boston.

These go-gangs will tend to stay local for a number of reasons. First, they will stay close to their home base for fuel, and the accumulated resources they have gathered. Secondly, as I already mentioned, they will run into other go-gangs in their travel. The most compelling reason for them to stay put is that it's better to reign in hell than serve in heaven. The FedGov might be working in Ohio, why go there when we can rape and pillage here?


BigBear said...

I don't see a golden horde but rather a few people on foot or possibly motor bike. They will seek out anything of value to sell or use. Don't think they won't. I am seeing this already at my cabin site. The dirt poor jobless individuals are looking for something of value to sell. For now they overlook food stocks but that will change.

This past winter my cabin as well as two additional homes were hit rolled. They used a snowmobile to scout the sites, emptied them stashing the goods by the roads then came along later with a trunk and hauled the loot away.

A massive horde will not descend but the small bands will be just as deadly and will wipe out your preps.

Dragon said...

The town near one of my campsites has a tavern where SHTF was being discussed. Several of the patrons were vocal about stocking fuel and ammo for shtf. Because they believed that being able to out gun the other guy entitled them to his stuff and probably his women folk. I smiled as I finished my dinner. The food was excellent but the intel was better. I now hunt at that camp but won't be goin there come SHTF. Local bushwackers are a distinct probability after a collapse.
My take on all of this is:
Be early to your bugout.
Be vigilant at all times.
Develop reaction plans.
install perimeter intrusion detection.
and never keep everything at your bugout location.You may need to leave and come back armed. There's my two cents,Dragon

Heywood said...

The idea of a 'slow slide' seems most likely to me.

Which is why I'm so dubious about the idea of 'bugging out'.

Where are you bugging out to? Do you have multiple years worth of food and water there? Are you sure that by the time you get there, it won't have been pilfered or looted?

You want an example of 'slow slide' in action, right now? Look to most of sub-saharan Africa.

And, you might note, that in most places, when a crisis happens, the cities are the safest places.

The rural areas in a crisis become bandit country. So unless you've already got a 'commune' of a dozen or more people living in your 'bug-out location' essentially indefinitely (and food and water for all), shelter in place.

riverwalker said...

Ihe most dangerous person in the world is one that has nothing to lose. Many "average" people who lose everything will become a very real threat,albeit with a somewhat limited mobility.