Voaching and Mall Ninjas: Survival Lessons From the 2016 Election

big_game_hunting_electionLuckily American presidential elections always fall in the middle of hunting season so for many Americans few things make a better election detox than long walk in the woods with a gun. As I was doing just that, I considered if Donald Trump would need to wear any hunter’s orange. Bad joke I know, but it did pop into my mind. And there’s more. Some of the greatest opportunities of discovery begin with the unexpected. And many things “unexpectedly” unfolded between the evening of the 8th and morning 9th of November.

By Doc Montana, a contributing author of SHTFBlog and Survival Cache

So as one with survival/prepping bends, I embraced the unexpected as a chance to learn. A social experiment, if you will. Rather than placing value judgements on people or results, I studied the behaviors, reactions, and counter-reactions. Like when there’s a natural disaster, instead of critiquing the evacuation, I study the events as they unfold and use them to refine my personal survival models. They are a picture of reality whether you like it or not.

Poll Dancing

According to the polls, its a proven fact that the readership of this blog and SurvivalCache are 50% Democrats, 50% Repbulicans, 30% Libertarian, 25% Green Party, and 71% Independent. At least 75% of the readers are male and 46% are female. Overall they voted 3% for Trump, 3% for Hillary, with the remaining 99% voting for someone or something else that may or may not have included anyone officially on the ballot.

trump_articleAs with Trump’s season of unscripted reality TV shows, it became clear that it had all the makings of a blockbuster thriller with none of the budget or stunt doubles. When each weekly episode ended we were left with a humdinger, a cliffhanger, or a key player was “killed off” the show. Sometimes there was a mind boggling plot twist that left America’s collective mouth agape and drooling. Red, blue, or purple, it made no difference. Everyone watched, listened, joked and talked about the show. But the biggest reveal, the one shocking the fans to their core and immediately becoming the most the defining moment of the entire first season, was when the audience was allowed to vote for the celebrity of choice. While it had long since been discovered that neither candidate could sing or dance, the followers of the show turned out in record droves. And then America became the star of the show. Yea, there was that tall guy and that shorter gal who were in the news, but for a brief moment, it was us, the citizens. It was our turn to take the spotlight. And trust me, we provided our own shock and awe.

Beware the Unknown unknowns

We have models for civil unrest, martial law, prepper percentages, mob behaviors, marauding, and natural disasters of all kinds. We make educated guesses on duration, when to call it a bug out, and any number of variables based on personal experience that we each individually believe will give us an advantage. The problem here: demographics data was wrong and Trump proved it.

Related: Trump Respect, not Understanding

Now I’m not one to give Trump any unearned sophistication, but he sure seemed to squeeze votes out of people and places that politicians had not drilled into in decades. The massive immigration of Americans flooding into the electoral system overwhelmed the poll vetting process to the point where it was clear we had no idea who would vote, and for whom they would vote.

Poker Face

In many ways, the election unfolded like a game of poker. Who’s hand was the best, who was bluffing, and most of all who was watching the game. So on Tuesday night, Hillary laid down the most important poker hand in her life, a straight flush (royals are unAmerican), all hearts, followed by smile and a Shoulder Shimmy™.

poker_hand_electionOn the other side of the table, Trump hesitantly dropped his cards down on the green felt one at a time and looked just as surprised as the rest of America when his hand won. Who knew you could beat a straight flush with five-of-a-kind, all deuces. So how did Trump’s hand bite Hillary in the pantsuit? Because the media didn’t know there were more than four of each suite in a deck of cards since they never played polling poker with the entire deck.

Voaching

Trump Voached, or poached votes, plain and simple. Nothing in the illegal sense, but definitely with the same tactics as professional poachers. Trump’s Voaching included attracting voters with bait. Trump Voached votes out of season by addressing topics formerly thought off limits to candidates. Trump Voached well over his limit of certain demographic groups leaving less game for the rest of the candidates to hunt. Trump viciously Voached votes by attacking fellow hunters in the primary and again during the general election. A Voaching Trump did not throw back the bottom feeders, trash fish, and other nuisance pests who still counted towards his limit because they are Americans. In many cases he even proudly hugged them for a selfie while simultaneously looking confused as to who they were.

Cape of Fear

ak_47_pro_2aA bright spot in all this disagreement that grows in intensity every day since 11/9 (although some compare it to 9/11) can be seen in a convergence of gun rights. Many traditional Republicans have wrapped themselves in the a 2nd Amendment cape strutting around like superheroes. Until recently, that cape was to give the common folk a fighting chance for when the government goes all tyrannical. Until recently, the fear of such tyranny was based upon ancient history and paranoia, at least according to the stereotypical Democrat. But on the 9th of November, 2016, a sizable swath of the those in the popular vote got a taste of that paranoia. And it was quite bitter. Now that the blood is drying and dust is settling, and the grieving process has moved away from rants and alcohol, a healthy respect for the power of the people has emerged. An unlikely consequence of this election: liberals may have a new perspective on the second amendment. Maybe there’s something to this well regulated militia stuff after all,” they’re thinking.

Read Also: The Free Marketplace of Ideas is Dead

In other words, the Right to Bear Arms looks a little different today to the “only-for-hunting” crowd. Not that Trump is the real enemy, but instead the very real chance that the undeniable rights of Americans might be infringed upon is the foe at the door. Exactly what those rights are has yet to be determined, but the Second Amendment is the Sheepdog, and there are a lot more blue sheepdogs today than this time last year.

But do you Operate?

There are at least two big survival takeaways as 2016 winds down. The first is that the Unknown Unknowns are alive and well. This means that there are significant concerns based in reality so there’s no need to waste good space adding bigfoot, Area 51, and chemtrails to your conspiracy of threats. There are very real threats which provide ample exercise for prepping and survival. Unfortunately the data we use to forecast imminent threats are incomplete at best. So, the downstream results of the threat gain an even greater margin of error.

To any serious survivalist, the so-called Mall Ninja has been the public face of the anti-operator or unprepper. If society collapsed, the purebred Mall Ninja would be little more than an irritating fly in need of swatting. Mall Ninjas are more of a threat to themselves than to others. With this being said, their abundance of gear and lack of skill means they shouldn’t be ignored, but rather treated like a drunk driver on the highway.

If Mall Ninjas are the public face of the prepared to the unprepared, and that face is used to generalize across society as a whole (or at least the portion of society that will attempt to survive), then our war planning is about to get a reality enema. If an unpolled, non-vocal segment of American society can Swiftboat a presidential election, just imagine what is waiting for you when the lights go out.

hollywood_election_signThe second takeaway is the need to model our survival scenarios on more than popular demographics. The personal quantity of perceived threats in any competitive survival situation is probably based four factors: Hollywood, expendable income, ego, and the desire to remain sane. Hollywood is the generic term for fictional accounts of a disaster played out for entertainment. For many, the fiction is limited to the catastrophic event, but the reaction of the populace or the hero is often filed away by the consumer as a reasonable strategy should such an event ever unfold.

The expendable income aspect is that one cannot have it all so one must temper the universe to fit within whatever the pocketbook can afford. While there is positive correlation between gear and survival, it seems there is no lower threshold as to what constitutes “gear.”

Further Reading: Survival Psychology 

Ego is a survival strategy. Not just that you can survive something, but that you deserve to survive. However, ego has been known to get some folks killed as well. Ego can lead you to do things like not asking for help, getting in over your head to avoid admitting you don’t know what you’re doing, or even thinking you have absolute Constitutional rights in the face of professional authorities.

And finally, one must navigate the turbid waters between imminent global catastrophe and a relaxing afternoon. Too much of either is unhealthy from a survival perspective, but one without the other rots your perspective.  Applying the four aspects to the 2016 election should shift the mainstream American out of park, and the survival/prepper into high gear. Unfortunately, some people, including politicians, now plan on shifting into reverse. I can see their slogan now…  “Make America Great Again Before It Was Great Again!”

The election results provide unvarnished insights into a portion of the fabric of society that rarely becomes measurable, but will certainly be fighting with you or next to you for scant resources when the overextended aspects of society collapse under their own weight. This is nothing short of Preparedness 2.0: an edgy remix with more cowbell. Just remember, a mind is like a parachute. It only works when it’s open but when it’s open you are a slower moving target that is easily visible from the ground.

Photos Courtesy of:

Doc Montana
Jennifer Nass
Ray Rivera
Dan Leach 
F. Sigorski

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14 comments… add one
  • Kevin November 17, 2016, 7:50 pm

    Well, I voted for Trump!

    Reply
    • Rob November 17, 2016, 8:11 pm

      I as well… Hmm, oddly enough not one mention of the Hilda beast. So can we assume that the articles author did.

      Reply
      • Doc Montana November 17, 2016, 8:28 pm

        “Hillary laid down the most important poker hand in her life, a straight flush (royals are unAmerican), all hearts, followed by smile and a Shoulder Shimmy™.”

        nuff said.

        Reply
      • BamaMan November 23, 2016, 3:21 pm

        this site has been anti trump the whole way. laid it all on ben carson to win as republican early and went down in smoke.

        Reply
        • D - Ray November 23, 2016, 5:56 pm

          I wrote a very pro-Trump article prior to the election.

          Reply
          • BamaMan November 30, 2016, 10:42 am

            pardon if i omitted the one and only but leading to the election it was Carson, Carson, Carson….

          • BamaMan November 30, 2016, 10:47 am

            mall nijas are a double edge sword, they vote to keep 2nd Amendment alive and then do some real stupid things to ,keep liberals up in arms……necessary evil

  • Cody Osborne November 18, 2016, 12:30 am

    I am confused by the numbers you stated in your polls. I can’t tell if you are satiring the failure of the election polls or if I’m missing your point. Can you explain further?

    Reply
    • Doc Montana November 18, 2016, 11:55 am

      Thanks for the read.

      The stats were pure satire and sarcasm except based in reality. The margin of error of most mainstream polls could have easily been rendered irrelevant by the overwhelming amount of unknowns.

      The issue with the data is that it produces results wheather or not those results have any merit at all. If you survey one person, then 100% of your sample supports something. If you survey 1000 people but only one person answers the question, then 100% of the responses support a particular candidate. And we all know that D or R, most people consider themselves I at the core.

      Add to this the personal news bubble that many folks live in by surrounding themselves with infostreams that only support their beliefs and wishes, the error is magnified to the point of absurdity. Which was my point too.

      Reply
  • OhioEMT November 18, 2016, 10:50 am

    I have to say, that as an independent voter, I have been given few candidates by either party that I can actually get behind fully. I just want to keep my rights intact, rather than watch candidates try to sweep them away with the stroke of a pen. I vote to keep our basic rights intact, and vote for the candidate most likely to not infringe on them. Both major parties scare the crap out of me. The extremes that some of the platforms take should cause concern in anyone.
    I voted this time to keep Social justice warriors / BLM from gaining political power, and to protect my 2nd amendment rights. I don’t like Trump, but Clinton was the worse of the two. If this is the best the two major parties have…. America is in sad, sad shape.

    Reply
  • Roger November 18, 2016, 1:50 pm

    I voted for Trump as well, the lesser of two evils! Whether he can actually affect REAL (hopefully positive for this country or at least the majority of it) change with Congress’s traditional voting for itself is something that only time will tell, hell, even the ostrich has to take its head out of the sand to move (forward or back). As for gear let me sell you a pencil sharpener to make the perfect tender/kindling with, an obvious necessity if you’re going to survive; yes, BS still rules! GLAHP!

    Reply
  • Sirlancelot November 25, 2016, 9:47 am

    Voted Trump not because he was the lesser of two evils but because in the end he won the nomination fair and square.

    Hillary Clinton was never an option since I view her as a liar ,cheat ,criminal ,murderer xcetera.

    Donald Trump was opposed by both sides of the aisle and a lot of so-called conservative websites. This in my humble opinion makes him the perfect anti-establishment president.

    As far as mall ninjas go I believe the saying is , we are 3 meals away from Anarchy ?With the obesity problem here in the US at epidemic levels they will be a lot of fat, pissed off people looking for that last can of food.

    Joe six-pack and his M4gery could be a dangerous customer indeed,

    The inner cities have already started the party with insane murder rates in places like Detroit and Chicago. If middle-class America joins the fray we could be looking at some serious trouble.

    It’s my hope President Trump will pull us from the edge of the abyss.

    Reply
  • Jim December 10, 2016, 5:17 am

    boy Trumpeters sure are sensitive.

    Reply
  • john-atlanta December 23, 2016, 11:11 am

    As God showed me and as I wrote in Feb and March 2014, God was going to cut off the hand of Congress (make them totally useless) and then kill them. Even SCOTUS did it with homosexual marriage and ObamaCare where “state” no longer means state.

    Congress’s own stenographer warned them 3x that God will not be mocked, as they dragged her off the house into the elevator. They ignored their final warning not to mock God !

    In the Bible the King of Babylon (Trump) beats and destroys the whore of Babylon (Clinton). The winner of the election was never in doubt and as I have said before, this had to be the most worthless and meaningless election of all because God already chose the “winners”.

    The most dangerous time for the USA is when Trump looks over at that shiny newly refurbished capitol building finished in time just for him and then that adoring crowd and thinks in his heart

    “looked what I accomplished “ by the might of my power, and for the honour of my majesty?””

    Daniel 4:31

    Reply

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