Well let's face it. The greatest danger we face is a slow economic slide into a 3rd world country. Now the $64,000 dollar question is how to prepare for it. I have been re-reading FerFal's blog heavily, as he has lived through such a slide, and I feel his insight is a key indicator on what to do.
What this means to me is this:
1) I will be employed, but I will have to work longer hours to keep my job.
2) Getting to and from work is going to get very dangerous.
3) I will be forced to live in a high-threat environment.
4) Police help will be available to the rich, who can afford to bribe.
5) My sidearm will be more valuable than any rifle.
6) Food and electricity will available most of the time.
I agree with FerFAL's assessment that you would not be allowed to walk down main street with a shotgun or your MBR. Unless there is a complete collapse of law and order then it's best to leave the long guns home. Likewise, if there is a complete collapse, then a lone person waltzing down to the supermarket with a MBR will be attacked for his weapon.
So in a slow slide, until society collapses then your sidearm would be the most important piece of gear you own. If you live in a very rural environment then a rifle or shotgun might be acceptable in your truck, but even then, a concealed handgun would be nice to have. To this end I have begun shopping for a shoulder holster for my Sig. I also am not a fan of the factory grips, I want to see about replacing them with something more robust, and less slippery. I also want to upgrade my sights to Tritium or whatever it's called. Practicing last night in the dark, I couldn't see where my weapon was pointed - not good.
Add to this line of reasoning that Obammy might ban handgun sales outright, or make the licensing procedure too long and complex that it is an effective ban. I just hope I am grandfathered in. Even if you don't have the money for a handgun I encourage everyone to start the licensing procedure.
As for what to buy. There were a few features I felt were a 100% necessity for a daily carry handgun. It had to be a double action firearm, chambered in a common, but large caliber. And it needed to be reliable. I found a Sig P220 on sale, and fell in love with it. It holds 8+1 of .45 ACP so there is plenty of firepower. It is accurate, and very reliable. Earlier posts fully detail what I love about my Sig, so check the "firearm" posts to see them.
I have already started to be more aware of my surroundings, checking my house out as I pull up. This is a good thing to do all the time, regardless of the current threat level. I think I will have to beef up my security system, as FerFAL mentions dogs get poisoned, so they are of limited help.