Can todays man survive a worldwide disaster

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posted on Dec, 15 2004 @ 12:20 AM
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Could one major worldwide disaster set us back hundreds of years. Its amazing to think how far we have come, as a species, in a relatively short period of time. We have gone from living in caves to building massive, beautiful, structures that can house hundreds. We have gone from using horses to deliver our news and mail to the wonders of todays internet and computers. We have advanced so far in medicine in just the past fifty years it can boggle the mind. We have all became so dependant on our advanced lifestyle though, it makes me wonder could we be setting ourselves up for disaster?
When one thinks of past advanced civilizations, such as the Egyptians and Mayans, it truly is amazing that these people were able to thrive without the technology that we have today. They were able to form large communities of people that were able accomplish some pretty amazing feats, such as the pyramids, irrigation, farming, etc. These people prospered for many hundreds of years at an advanced rate but eventually there way of life died off. Now, when we compare our civilization to theirs there are a lot of similarities but none, though some will try, can argue that we are much more technologically advanced. The problem is though, could our society be a bubble that could burst at anytime. Think about it, if a major, world disaster were to happen tomorrow could we revert back to the way of these past advanced civilizations and thrive? Does the average person know how to perform the basic skills of survival such as building a fire with two sticks, building a simple shelter, and finding potable water? We are so tied in to our advanced lifestyle that very few really care bout how it works, just that it does. We have all but forgotten the simple skills of a blacksmith or an Indian healer. Most have know idea how to even farm or raise live stock, let alone which plant out in the woods can help beat a cold or disinfect an ulcer. We have lost these skills that took thousands of years to acquire and helped our species survive until the present day. One can say that this knowledge has been put down in books and all one would have to do is study but its not that simple. Some of the basic skills of yesterday took apprentices years to hone and it is doubtful that one could become a master from a book without any personal instruction. There are those that are still skilled in these arts, but are there enough to help save man if we were thrust into a world with no electricity, no oil, no grocery stores, scarce food, wide spread disease, and no hospitals. Should we be concerned that we have put all of our eggs in one basket, so to speak, and rely so heavily on technology to survive? Could we be headed for a major collapse if disaster strikes?




posted on Dec, 15 2004 @ 12:39 AM
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Originall posted by skychiefWe have gone from living in caves to building massive, beautiful, structures that can house hundreds.


I'm pretty sure that, atleast in the United States, the government has taken precautiions for this event, including putting a bunch of stuff in a cave, and having a list of scientists and important people ready to run into that cave at a moment's notice. If this did indeed happen, we may have to resort to living in caves once again, atleast until the radiation has cleared or the big dust clouds in the sky or whatever.
Then, the people in the cave would emerge with all the supplies they saved, and the engineers would use the supplies they saved to start rebuilding a civilization.

If this failed, or if this isn't happening, then I think you're question is a very plausible one. However, although we humans have lost most of the survival know-how in our attempt to evolutionize ourselves, I think there's one thing or two things that we have not lost that will help whoever survived the disaster, to survive on past it and continue the human race, and those things are: 1) Instinct. I think if put in a situation where we may need to revert back to our old caveman days, our instincts might kick in, such as the instincts of a baby sea turtle who just happens to know where to try and go, without being told. Our primal instincts may save us in this situation. And 2) The need to survive. All animals possess the inherent idea that he/she will do anything and everything to survive. If the life of the human race is in your hands, I think you'll find a way to survive no matter what kind of knowledge you have.

It is an interesting question, and can probably be answered by watching one of my favorite reality TV shows: "Survivor"
(On second thought, after seeing that show, I take back what I said above. The average human would not be able to survive without techonology.
) I'm not worried, though, because if it's me - the human race will live on just fine...assuming there's a female who's not sterile or too nasty to do the dirty business with who survived the disaster, too.


[edit on 15/12/04 by an3rkist]



posted on Dec, 15 2004 @ 10:26 AM
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It would largely depend on the type of disaster, whether the disaster would leave the manufacturing facilities in place or not.

In the former case, probably. There'd be some downtime (decades) while worldwide communication and, more importantly, transportation was reestablished, but as long as enough of the maufacturing plants survived we would be able to return to our current level relatively quickly.

In the latter, we'd be knocked back a bit. How much would depend on the level of physical destruction. As long as some basic science and engineering books survived we'd be pushed back to 18th or 19th century technology: stuff we could make with tools we'd made ourselves.

Really, our current level of technology depends on having machines that make the machines that make the machines that make our tools



posted on Dec, 15 2004 @ 11:22 PM
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Originally posted by Whiskey Jack
Really, our current level of technology depends on having machines that make the machines that make the machines that make our tools


This is where I see the problem about our current technological society. We have become so dependant on this life style that it makes me wonder if we would not be knocked back four or five hundred years. There are alot of people walking around today who have no idea how the electricity gets to thier house, they just know that it does. People would starve rather quickly if they had no way of going to the store and buying food. Imagine how ugly that scene would be as thousands stood outside a grocery store only to be told that there was limited supplies left. Remeber the cabbage patch doll craze of the eighties? Now imgine those people starving and needing to find a way to feed thier families. It could, and probably would, be total chaos.



posted on Dec, 16 2004 @ 12:20 AM
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Unless every country on Earth was effected by this disaster I cant see how we would revert to cavemen. Most countries have their own facteries and produce their own goods. If something were to happen somewhere then it could just get help from other nations until it can land back on its feet. Some people say how Atlantis had a nuclear war with India or around that area and it set us back a thousand years. That or a whole bunch of meteorites hitting the Earth is the only way I could see something like this happening.



posted on Dec, 16 2004 @ 11:53 PM
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Originally posted by Croat56
Unless every country on Earth was effected by this disaster I cant see how we would revert to cavemen. Most countries have their own facteries and produce their own goods. If something were to happen somewhere then it could just get help from other nations until it can land back on its feet. Some people say how Atlantis had a nuclear war with India or around that area and it set us back a thousand years. That or a whole bunch of meteorites hitting the Earth is the only way I could see something like this happening.


This is exactly what I was talking about when I mentioned a world wide disaster. Say, for instance, a fairly large asteroid roughly two-three miles wide impacted roughly around the center of Africa. In a very short time the entire planet would probably be enveloped by a thick shroud of dust, possibly affecting communications, and soon after food would become scarce. Soon oil shortages would cause massive death around the world as people would succumb to the cold and panic would ensue. It would be a scary situation to say the least especially with limited commmunication. I know this sounds like every post apocalyptic movie ever made but I really wonder how we would respond to a disaster of this proportion. I mean on 9-11 our country was in total disarray but could you imagine if communications had been severed and we were only getting small bits of info. We would have been in a state of total panic and chaos. Now, throw in the rest of the planet and things would get real ugly.



posted on Dec, 17 2004 @ 04:05 AM
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Depends on how bad the disaster is of course. What do you do with all those CD's & DVD's when there's no players to run them or no power to run the players. Go back to printed books of course and telling stories around the campfire.

What's spooky is everything is being transfered to digital media and if there were a major disaster that wiped out 99% of mankind, that 1% wouldn't care much about anything except staying alive. You could really end up losing most of history if you didn't restore those systems right away - while the knowledge about them is still fresh. Even the manuals these days are not being printed - they're stored on digital files. How are you going to read the manual to repair a system when there's no system to look at the manual?

That's really the problem with technology, is if you loose part of it there will be a cascading effect or domino effect that could lead to it's permanent loss. When your trying to survive technology becomes too difficult to maintain - you would start converting technological items into basic tools.

Just like if you needed heat to survive a blizzard (as in The Day After Tommorow) it wouldn't matter much if the book or chair you had available to burn was worth 5 dollars at one time or 5000 dollars. Either would give you btu's to stay warm enough not to freeze to death. Listening to your favorite band on a CD just wouldn't mean much in the scheme of things.

When I go to the store occasionally I'll pull out a bill to pay for whatever I'm buying & the total comes up and I see if I add a few coins I can get back all dollars, or a quarter instead a bunch of loose change etc. But if the person has already entered my bill denomination into the computer and they get this baffled look on their face because they don't know how to do simple addition & subtraction. Last time at a fast food place this girl was actually counting with her fingers like you would expect an 7-8 year old to do. These are the type of people who have to rely on others to survive.

The biggest problem I see is many cities are growing in places where you cannot survive without modern technology. Especially places where water has to be pumped in from great distances to sustain the city. You can't live without water & you definately can't produce food without it either. You need to live somewhere that is somewhat habitable. Even if your one of the few guys in that city with your own deep well you better be prepared to guard it 24 hours a day - but then maybe the city will come along with it's police force & confiscate your domain anyway.

Of course just being in a large city will mean the death of most, because only the prepared & the strongest will survive. When we have a snowstorm and the roads get bad here it's amazing how fast the store shelves empty - within a few days the only thing left is canned goods. Most the food is shipped in from somewhere else - if you cannot supply your own food you will be SOL after a disaster because there won't be any shipments comming in.

We seem to be raising sheeple who are very good at using technological items and are good consumers, but they don't understand anything about the basics of how things work - we cater to them & they are removed from that level of understanding. If their car breaks down they rely on a tow truck to retrieve their car & then a mechanic to repair it. If there car broke down after a disaster it would end up being abandonded on the roadside - and if the weather was severe they would probably die, because they were relying on the autoheater to keep warm. A survivor knows how things they use work and they usually have things like extra fuses in their auto and if they're not in their own auto & they need a fuse they could come up with a bypass using an unnecessary wire from somewhere else in the automobile. If someone tries to rob the sheeple rely on the phone system to call a policeman. There's just a large part of the population that cannot survive without help.



[edit on 17-12-2004 by outsider]



posted on Dec, 17 2004 @ 05:36 AM
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an3rkist has some of the idea, the OCD (Office of Civil Defense) has/had numerous locations, that are stockpiled with first aid, water, and food..problem is, last one I was at, the food was from the 50's and it was 1978, so unless they have done a major overhaul lately, if somthing did occur and you were lucky enough to know where one of these buildings/cave (the one cave I know of, is Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico)you would be eating food that is at least 54 years old.

To give you a general idea what the Civil Defense is/was supposed to do, here are some of the titles

www.military-info.com...

Somewhere on the net, there should be a list of locations for civil defense shelters, but I guess I am not wording my search right. (There is one in the basement of the telephone company in downtown Oklahoma City, but your id needs (or used to I honestly don't know if it is still required) your id needs to have a small little triangle located on it. That gives/gave you access to the shelter.


This guy appars to be huge on Civil Defense

"Civil Defense Now! --- The Website "

www.survivalring.org...


BTW, we now call the Civil Defense

Federal Emergency Management Agency

www.fema.gov...


Damn, did you know that you can get flood info from FEMA

"A specific flood map panel or an area of interest can be located by typing in a street address, coordinates or by using the interactive map."

msc.fema.gov...

Am I overreacting? If these are known flood areas, that could be used against the area right?

"Digital Q3 Flood Data. Digital Q3 Flood Data is available on CD-ROM for more than 1,250 counties. You can order the CD-ROMs by calling the Map Service Center or online through the FEMA Flood Map Store"

But anyway, wasn't trying to change the interest on the thread. Could we survive? As said earlier, depends on the disaster. I believe there would always be survivors --about the only way most of the world would be gone, would be if the nations that have nukes, all nuked each other..nuclear winter etc etc.
But as also mentioned , we have become technology dependant, and would be up the creek without it.
Cars would run for awhile, but unless we got the electrical grid up or you had the ability to suck gas out of storage tanks, they would become useless. Food that needed to be cooled or frozen, would spoil, Whatever building/homes were left in good shape would probably be overflowing with people, most seeking info, that would probably be word of mouth (surely someone would have an am radio with batteries on them...) depending on the disaster, I could see people behaving like raving lunatics trying to get food, water, and shelter to stay alive.
Because when you come down to it, and our survival instinct kicks in, we would do about anything to stay alive.







[edit on 17-12-2004 by NetStorm]



posted on Dec, 17 2004 @ 06:10 AM
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Survive ? Back in the woods there stood a cabin .Got news for you there are still woods and cabins .Me and manny more like me will survive we can kill our own food fish and even know some wiled veges start a fire with two sticks? well yes some of us can do that as well but why bother when a good magnifing glass or even the bottom of a broken bottol will do the trick? Ps only ever need to start a fire once if you move you take a small amount in a steal bucket .
But unless the world is flatened we wont have a problem setting up town and making the town run again . Wile Ill be the first to admit the pc will be history getting the older power plants running isent brain surgery.
we have a small on right here in town it doesent do much except sell power to the power company now but changing it would be easy enough .
runs on nataril gas but if thats not around methain will do .Its just a boiler turbine the boiler has gas lines run under it with fire under it to heat the water .heck if it came down to it you could clear out the gas pipes and use wood even though coal would be better .Of corse then its back to shoveling .lol
and theres 20 guys in town that are line men no problem with fixing the wires . The citys will die only because 5 guys cannot save a beached whale .
but assuming theres anything at all left and after the hords of nonsurvivers finly kill each other or starve thous of us like me will come back out of the woods and rebuild and get it back up to the late 60des tek with little problem.Now if a few of the high teks survive then in 50 years the world would be back to the tek we have now just - 1/4 of the people.
Of corse if we mannage to flaten everthing to the point the enverment cannot recover then you just mite as well stay in that hole untill you die because none of us could servive long term then.



posted on Dec, 17 2004 @ 08:19 AM
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We as humans can do anything we put our minds to. We are the most complex organisms on the planet, we can live in any climate, we can survive.



posted on Dec, 23 2004 @ 10:59 AM
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Roughly 80,000 years ago a Vocano exploded and coated the earth with Ash. Less than 10,000 humans survived that event. We have done it before, we will do it again.

It is only becuase the last 10,000 years have been environmentally uneventfull that technology has been allowed to progress to the point it has. Sooner or later, a volcano, a meteor, a massive solar storm...something will occur and humanity will be back at the brink of extinction.

Maybe next time we can get it right.



posted on Dec, 29 2004 @ 01:14 PM
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After a global disaster you would need something like Uriels Machine to rebuild civilization. People need to learn to read the stars as every culture before us has. It was not a purely religious aspect but it was required to know the timing of the seasons.
If you don't know what time of year it is how do you know when to plant crops?


E_T

posted on Dec, 29 2004 @ 02:20 PM
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Originally posted by skychief
This is exactly what I was talking about when I mentioned a world wide disaster. Say, for instance, a fairly large asteroid roughly two-three miles wide impacted roughly around the center of Africa. In a very short time the entire planet would probably be enveloped by a thick shroud of dust, possibly affecting communications, and soon after food would become scarce. Soon oil shortages would cause massive death around the world as people would succumb to the cold and panic would ensue.
LOL
Lack of "TV" and oil would be smallest of you're worries!
First with anything bigger than (about) kilometer sized object it doesn't really matter so much where it hits, it would barely notice ocean. (hit to ocean would propably cause even additional destruction by creating huge tsunamis)
If we go to few times bigger objects radiant heat from ejecta falling back to earth would heat atmosphere hot enough to ignite everything compustible.
Mankind, in its current form, might survive (barely) through impact af couple kilometer wide object but anything bigger than that and survivors (if there's those) would go back to "stone age".





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