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A Survival Community: Village Building the Day After

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posted on Apr, 16 2008 @ 09:47 PM
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There are lots of threads on becoming self reliant, with farms, techniques for both peace and combat, but there aren't any on rebuilding a fallen community. In the US, Fema has demonstrated its usefullness in the face of tragedy. If, just if the catastrophic event was above normal terms, what would a band of survivors do? Under limited resources, man power, and professionals how would a mini society substain?

Simple Scenario: Devastating Depression (whether its global, or national). Your community (your place of residence) has fallen victim. this is several months later, and many have died due to overpopulation and resource consumption. Survivors are you, your family and others from your community (35people total)

Conditions: -No Aid from Government. (Lawless Territory)
-No Aid from Corporations or Humanitarian Groups.
- Shortage of Food.
- Lack of manpower.
- Off the Grid (no power, gas, or other insitutionalized utilities.)
Objective: -Establish a Community that is secure from disease, violence, and corruption. Community must last several years till order is restored.

I present this scenario cause even after events, the survivors must still maintain and continue to live. It's unlikely that survivors would continue to be nomadic. If You obtained the Leader role, how would you manage your community? and how would you Adapt to such a scenario?




posted on Apr, 17 2008 @ 02:53 PM
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Originally posted by Obsurion
There are lots of threads on becoming self reliant, with farms, techniques for both peace and combat, but there aren't any on rebuilding a fallen community.


Well, actually there is this thread on "How to Build or Rebuild A Civilization," but it's over a year old, and I'm always happy to see a fresh discussion on the issue.

A lot of people ignore the need for society to be able to rebuild itself, procure resources, ensure mutual defense, and re-establish commerce, research, and industry. Without those core absolutes, anyone who thinks themselves free and self-sufficient will surely become a slave to someone else's needs or desires.

I heavily recommend reading the Machiavelli dialogues. He gets a real bad name by people who've never read him, because of the association with "Machiavellian practices," but in truth, he's one of the few people who were in a unique position to witness the fall of empire, true monarchies, and republics, and has some brilliant insights on the reality, rather than the altruism, of governance.



posted on Apr, 18 2008 @ 10:27 PM
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Security is gonna be the first thing to consider IMO. After that Knowledge and the ability to Teach will make all the difference. I try to think of life in the 1800's and all the Knowledge that was required. Having the books that teach that stuff is key, since you may not survive as long as the Knowledge needs to.

Teaching others is like sharing and will build relationships that will stand the test of hardships.



posted on Apr, 19 2008 @ 11:51 AM
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Great thread, and you can start rebuilding your 'post disaster/crisis community' long before the life changing event happens.
Teach those around you who are willing to learn about survival, self sufficiency, defense, and living the 'old ways.'

Make multiple plans and drill each one.

At this point each person you teach to survive is one less person attempting to murder you for a moldy potato.



posted on Apr, 21 2008 @ 03:14 PM
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If you get the chance to get a copy, have a read of Design Like You Give A Damn...it details all different kinds of refugee community building, alternate uses of materials, philosophy, politics, and some damn good architectural design ideas...a bloody marvellous read!



posted on Apr, 21 2008 @ 09:33 PM
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Well, now that I've had a little time to sit down and go over this. Here's the situation:

  • No electricity
  • No running water
  • No services (police, fire, hospitals, schools, waste, etc)
  • No markets

    That said, your immediate priorities are thus:

  • Take Stock - Where is each person in your household, and what is their condition? Is medical care needed for anyone in your care? How much food, water, weapons, and tools do you have. Who do you know that is close by (as in a neighbor) that you can trust to watch your back? Who, among those are you able to contact, and who among those are willing to join you in organized mutual self-defense? What is the stock of their resources and nearby people they know and trust? Repeat with this next tier until you have a sizeable organization in your neighborhood.

  • Get Organized - Choose a leader. Ideally, this will be yourself, or someone you trust implicitly. How defensible is your group's terrain? Can people relocate to a walled neighborhood? Is everyone armed? What is everyone's skillset? You need one person and a backup in charge of each of the following: Medic, Food, Water, Arsenol, Hygiene, Defense, Children, Elderly. There are other jobs, to be certain, but those are utmost priority. Assume that the jails, prisons, and mental wards have already let their occupants out into the street, and that at any moment an armed gang is going to show up looking to take anything they want by force. Be prepared to fight them. Chances are high that if they encounter an organized resistance, they'll seek weaker prey.

  • Rule and Governance - In an immediate survival situation, decisions must be fast, final, and only questioned when in dire need. If a gang of a hundred armed thugs is walking down your street, you do not have time to sit and pander to a commitee about what's in it for them. You are a benign dictator, they'll die by the gang's hands (if they're lucky), or they'll follow your orders and have a chance at life. You are now a benign dictator. Despite all we've been taught to believe, this is probably the one situation where a Democracy is inappropriate. Save it for when the immediate crisis is over and you are re-establishing real civilization. For now, your goal is to make it through the next few days. People need to be protected, fed, watered, their waste needs to be disposed of, their .s sheltered from the elements, and the ailments treated. Remain armed at all times. In a single-ruler situation, an unarmed ruler is not on equal ground with his guards. At best he will be paranoid about them turning on him, at worst, he will be at their mercy the first time a weapon is drawn in anger. Armed, and able to defend yourself, you are the equal of your guards in both your eyes and theirs.

  • Payment - You will need to not only establish a currency, as people will only work for free for so long. After a while, your militia will demand payment for risking their lives to protect all these other people. Your cooks will demand payment for serving people. Your food gatherers will need payment for their services, and so forth. Everyone will be under the assumption that they are working harder than anyone else, and thus entitled to something. Thus, the need for currency, and a valuation of goods and services. Choose something too common for a currency (such as leaves) and you end up with inflation. Choose something too rare for a currency (horses) and you end up with depression. You need something that is relatively small, portable, obtainable, and can resist the market being flooded, or counterfeited. During Europe's post-Crusade years, peppercorns served as currency. Spices were very rare, one single peppercorn, perhaps the most common spice amongst them, was enough to get dinner, a room, and breakfast at a nice inn. For those who believe people will work altruistically, indefinitely, for the good of the cause and sheer nobility of purpose, I invite you to examine the troubles the United States had after the first surge of patriotism, in keeping a regular army during the Revolutionary War.

  • Growth - Your community will eventually grow to the point where you will need the land and resources of people who haven't joined yet. They will most likely need to be convinced to join or move. You will need access to a permanent source of fresh water and land for planting crops. You will need other resources, such as brick and stone. Your best bet is to take over a gated community, where you've got a defined perimeter that can be more easily guarded. Make use of the buildings on the inside. Outside the wall, begin dismantling houses to use their building materials to construct whatever structures you need, and to reinforce your perimeter. Use the land from the deconstructed houses to plant crops. Work in a circle, around the wall, until the walled community is surrounded by flat farmland, from which you can easily spot enemies approaching. In such times, an alarm may be sounded, the farmers can be called back inside the walls, and the guards made ready to combat the threat if needed.

  • Establishing Communications and Trade - Once you are well-situated and self-sustaining, it is time to seek out other communities, to trade news, information, goods, services, and to stir up the gene pool a bit.

  • Congratulate Yourself - You not only got everyone through the crisis that you could, you have ensured their long-term survival, and established a defendable self-sustaining City-State with interstate commerce and communication. You are now a Monarch. Do you give up the power in favor of the ideal of democracy? Would your people even let you step down at this point? Would they continue to survive if you did? The hardest thing you'll ever have to do is choose between giving up the power for the good of the people or holding on to the power for the same reason.



  • posted on Apr, 22 2008 @ 08:59 AM
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    Libraries would have to be protected at all costs...in a world where we rely on digital archives that will erased at the first EMP blasts paper knowledge will be the only source of information, and the community that has access to that information=a community with power!



    posted on Apr, 22 2008 @ 03:07 PM
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    reply to post by thelibra
     


    A great little plan there libra! Kinda reminds me of how ancient Rome was brought together as a City-State, and look how well they did!!

    Citizen Smith raised an important addition though that I certainly agree with, you'd want as much knowledge material like books or working digital media as possible to make sure your settlement can be as effective as possible, and as smith also said: the most powerful!


    It may sound strange, but in a way I'd be interested for a disaster event like this to happen to see how survivors would rebuild society. Call it a social experiment if you will!



    posted on Apr, 22 2008 @ 06:28 PM
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    another community essential would be to aquire the ability to print...the ability to manufacture mass-media communications and distribute to other settlements would make your community a real ideological force to be reckoned with

    not to mention that, again, the ability to spread/control the flow of knowledge will be a real power!



    posted on Apr, 22 2008 @ 07:16 PM
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    reply to post by thelibra
     



    Libra, I was pretty much with you besides the whole picking a perfect gated community thingy with the perfect patch of fertile soil within an earshot of a pre-built perimiter, but then you started talking about money. My friend, if there is an in avertable tragedy that ends the civilized world, it will indubitably directly or indirectly associated with money. If it is not a mass famine from dead bees or insecticides, or a global economic melt down, nuclear war, or an asteroid, there is no doubt that it will be due to the institutions of money weather profits before health, or lack of resources to divert us from a natural extinction cycle, it is because of money.

    I wish the best of luck to you friend, but please be advised that if anyone from your expanding empire venture too far into the wilderness in search of resources that you promised them some for of currency for, they may come across certain types of "tribes" with no form of currency that might of learned a thing or two from the last numerous attempts to establish a global community or empire depending on if your listening to the news at 6, or reading a history book. PLEASE LEAVE THESE PEOPLE BE, don’t take their # just cause you can, these people are looking for the good life, not the easy life, not every one needs more than the satisfaction of a good days work with a full belly and worm bed.

    I've though about my own plans, but too be frank, your plans scare me.



    posted on Apr, 22 2008 @ 07:25 PM
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    reply to post by thelibra
     


    I'd focus my attempts on community, trade, and transport links using the UK's extensive canal networks that link all the major industrial-revolution population centres.

    It requires far less energy to move 40tons of cargo by narrowboat than by road routes and forms the beginnings of my planned post-x inland east-india transport empire...muhahahaha




    [edit on 22-4-2008 by citizen smith]



    posted on Apr, 23 2008 @ 08:47 AM
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    Originally posted by citizen smith
    Libraries would have to be protected at all costs...
    ...and the community that has access to that information=a community with power!


    I wholeheartedly agree. The local library (and bookstores) would be one of those "resources" that the community would need to rally to the aid of. Fires breaking out are going to be a real problem, as will weather, looters, etc. Book stores and libraries might be last on most looters list, but it will be there eventually. Books = Technology.

    Technology is an extremely powerful commodity, and the nation that has plenty to spare, has plenty to trade. If you have technology no one else has, you most likely can trade for any one (or more) technologies that the other nations posses. Good communication, diplomacy, and technology brokering can make one extremely powerful if they are willing to implement its use.

    You: know how to forge and mend steel goods.

    Neighbor A: knows how to effectively plant high-yield foods, and how to turn those raw foods into things like bread, tortillas, etc.

    Neighbor B: knows structural engineering, and how to dig wells.

    Neighbor C: knows how to press ammo and gunsmithy

    Neighbor D: knows carpentry

    Now, assuming that none of these people know each other's skills, or possibly about each other's existence, you can make a killing, technology-wise.

    Neighbors A and D are most likely to trade because their skills are benign, and both will desperately need steel goods as complimentary tools to those skills. So you trade your knowledge of steel the farmers, and then the food knowledge to the carpenters.

    You now have the ability offer Neighbor B any number of technologies in exchange for theirs, which at this point, you need. If you play your cards right, you can trade them the food and carpentry skills in exchange for their engineering and well-digging knowledge. Always try to trade he food skills FIRST, because well-fed people are less apt to raid and invade. Keep the steel as a last resort to trade, because steel can also be made into weapons which can be used against you later on.

    Neighbor C will prove the most difficult to trade with, as they will effectively have the highest weapon technology around. Because of your shrewd trades earlier, you have the ability to offer them an overwhelming amount of tech in exchange for their skill. There is also the possibility of an alliance between your two city-states as a result of the deal.

    So the end looks something like this:

    You: know steel, farming, food processing, carpentry, engineering, well-digging, gunsmithing, and ammo pressing.

    Neighbor A: knows steel, farming, and food processing.

    Neighbor B: knows farming, carpentry, engineering, and well-digging

    Neighbor C: knows pretty much everything you know, but they are now your military ally.

    Neighbor D: knows farming and carpentry.


    Thus, you have improved the quality of life for all, while at the same time, brokering the sum of all technologies to yourself, and gained a military ally in the process. The gap in knowledge may now be exploited. Perhaps you simply hold on till they develop or discover some technology you do not posses, and then trade for it, or perhaps you trade it for food, tools, horses, whatever commodity you need. Or maybe you use the gap to your advantage, and simply take them over through diplomacy and/or force.


    Originally posted by GrooveCat
    Kinda reminds me of how ancient Rome was brought together as a City-State, and look how well they did!!


    Heheh... I'm not sure if that was a compliment or a warning, but either way, it's very perceptive. I based my plan largely off of Rome's own story, because they went from being a fractious series of scattered villages to becoming a powerful technological juggernaut of an empire, using the carrot and stick as needed. Of course, eventually they fell, when generations later the excesses, hedonism, luxury, and gluttony were seen not as an occasional reward for hard work, but rather as the point of work, and eventually, done in lieu of work.


    Originally posted by GrooveCat
    It may sound strange, but in a way I'd be interested for a disaster event like this to happen to see how survivors would rebuild society. Call it a social experiment if you will!


    Sounds like you'd get a kick out of a computer game called Civilization. It's a nice way to sort of vicariously see what it'd be like to lead a people from nothing to something. All told, I'd much rather this remain a mental exercise, as I'm not keen on witnessing mankind reduced to a barbaric state. Also, people die in disasters. I'm comfortable with my own death, because after that point, I won't care what happens here. I am not, however, comfortable with the death of my family. And large-scale disasters will generally claim at least one person (if not all) who is very close to you.


    Originally posted by citizen smith
    another community essential would be to aquire the ability to print...the ability to manufacture mass-media communications and distribute to other settlements would make your community a real ideological force to be reckoned with


    Absolutely! A printing press would be absolutely essential once your community goes from "scattered survivors" to city-state builders. Of course, the printing press is a Pandora's box. Yes, you obtain the power to commit words to paper, and spread that word across the land, easily. You gain the ability to churn out new works, to support your ideology, to produce a newspaper, etc... but you also put that power in the hands of anyone who can use it. Historically, the press wants to be free, and will fight tooth and nail to be as free as possible. At this stage, remaining a totalitarian power is no longer feasible, and that difficult decision about stepping down to let people elect their leader will either be taken voluntarily, or not, but eventually will be needed.


    Originally posted by tom goose
    ...but then you started talking about money. My friend, if there is an in avertable tragedy that ends the civilized world, it will indubitably directly or indirectly associated with money.


    I understand your reservations, but also I disagree. People immediately associate money as being the root of all evil, be it through cliche or through bad personal experiences. However, the honest truth of the matter is that money is a tool, the end-use of which is decided by the holder of that tool.

    Take the claw hammer. You can use it to build a home, or you can use it to build a wall. You can use it to retrieve nails for re-use, or you can use it to forcibly pry open the door of someone's home. You can use it to dig a garden, or you can use it to take a life. The duality of uses for a hammer are numerous, and yet it is nothing more than a tool. When used to a positive end, it can help feed, shelter, recycle, and protect. When used to a negative end, it can help to isolate, steal, destroy, or kill. A hammer used for a negative end is no more evil than a hammer used for a positive end is good. It's just a hammer. The person using it is the one who is good or evil, and even then, without knowing their motive, even that is suspect. When I pry nails out for re-use, am I doing it for good or evil? If I'm planning on using those pried nails to build a home for my wife and child, it's good. If I'm doing it as scrap metal for bullets to knock over the local supply house, it's bad.

    Don't judge money as you would mankind. Money has no conscience, it has no morality or ethical boundaries. All money is, is a physical representation of math, in the form of something that people value.


    Originally posted by tom goose
    ...they may come across certain types of "tribes" with no form of currency that might of learned a thing or two from the last numerous attempts to establish a global community or empire depending on if your listening to the news at 6, or reading a history book. PLEASE LEAVE THESE PEOPLE BE, don’t take their ____ just cause you can...


    As an active member of my family's Indian tribe, I'm all too painfully aware of what happens when a more powerful force decides it will simply take your _____ just because it can, and this is exactly why I made a militia, technology, defense, expansion, and resources part of the plan. The next time it happens, it will not be -my- tribe that is murdered in the countless thousands and imprisoned in "reservations" hundreds of miles from anywhere we've ever known, our own religion and language made a hanging offense by our conquerors.

    It will also not be anything I would stand for my own people doing to another tribe. However, warfare itself will happen. It is as absolute as scarcity of resources. The 500+ nations living in Pre-Columbian America were not peaceful hippy communities like people think. There were massive wars over food, water, territory, and ideology. There were empires, slaves, human sacrifices, cannibalism, cold-blooded murder, and any number of crimes just as heinous as anything committed in Pre-Columbian Europe. I will not paint the past of my people in a rosy light just because we lost.

    However, just as with money, war is every bit as much a tool as the hammer. If used sparingly, responsibly, with compassion, mercy, and a clear understanding of one's goals, a greater good can come from it. If it is used without conscience, without a clear, definite goal that may be immediately measured in both progress and success, then it serves no purpose but to feed the Reaper.



    Originally posted by tom goose
    I've though about my own plans, but too be frank, your plans scare me.


    I can see why it would, but honestly, it shouldn't. Ignoring the true nature of man, history, and the capacity of mankind to commit atrocities will not make your tribe any more altruistic. I have no intention of imitating Andrew Jackson's Indian Removal Act. I do, however, have to keep in mind that someone else eventually will, and prepare for that.



    Originally posted by citizen smith
    I'd focus my attempts on community, trade, and transport links using the UK's extensive canal networks that link all the major industrial-revolution population centres.

    It requires far less energy to move 40tons of cargo by narrowboat than by road routes and forms the beginnings of my planned post-x inland east-india transport empire...muhahahaha


    We have no such luxury in the Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex. In stormy weather, our rivers are unnavigable, in calm weather, they are only a few inches deep. Even canoing down the Brazos is often more a matter of wading through a kiddy-pool and porting the canoe above your .. I can't even imagine a cargo-boat getting anywhere in it.



    posted on May, 14 2008 @ 11:17 AM
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    reply to post by Obsurion
     

    Great post Obsurion! The best time to start thinking about survival is before you need to. I personally believe that time is now. A little forward-thinking will go a long way in assuring your community's survival, if and when the sh-t ever does hit the fan.

    Just imagine how much easier it would be to establish a post Sitx community if you already had a sound, well thought out foundation to work from. This thread can provide that foundation with a little effort.

    theLibra has listed several good starting points, which only need to be expanded upon to become a true blueprint for organizing such a community.

    • Governance (autocratic, committee, democracracy, etc.)
    • Organization and specialization (assigning jobs to those best suited)
    • Take stock of resources and supplies (Determine what is onhand and what items are needed)
    • Defense (Protection of the community from outsiders)









    [edit on 5/14/08 by LLoyd45]



    posted on May, 14 2008 @ 11:33 AM
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    I think the answers to your question may lie in watching old westerns.

    Trades of value mixed with modern trades:

    Farmer
    Carpenter
    Undertaker
    Preacher
    Stable and coach works
    blacksmith/whitesmith
    Doctor/nurse
    lawyer/judge/court worker
    Law enforcement
    private security
    saloon keeper/distiller
    wine maker
    brewer
    Gunsmith
    live entertainer/theater
    Child care workers
    Printer
    Civil engineer
    EMT/ emergency responder
    Rancher
    Store keeper



    [edit on 14-5-2008 by Illahee]



    posted on May, 14 2008 @ 01:43 PM
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    Although Identifying what skills or trades are represented in your group composition is necessary, I believe the first order of business as theLibra said, would be to establish a leader or governing body.Under the conditions set by the OP, time is definitely of the essence, and plans must be developed and implemented quickly.

    The second order of business in my opinion would be providing security. Guards would need to be selected, outfitted, and posted at all main points of ingress and egress to the community. This would buy some time, for a proper inventory of supplies, skills, and deficits to be conducted.

    Locating a map or an individual with a good knowledge of the area would be invaluable. Since there's no running water, knowing how many wells or other water sources are in the area would be useful too.

    I'm not military, so maybe someone else could expand upon the topic of security a bit.

    Third on the list would be the assignment of tasks for essential everyday services like sanitation, medical care, gardening, livestock tending, water and food procurement/ distribution, equipment repair and/or fabrication, and item scrounging. This is where knowing what skills your members possess would be invaluable.


    [edit on 5/14/08 by LLoyd45]



    posted on May, 18 2008 @ 06:04 PM
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    defense, farming/hunting/gathering, and builders i think would be the most important things to take care of before anything else.

    Defense is probably the easiest to assemble. The men forming the defenses can also be farmers as well as builders. To have formidable defense system you might want to build your little town in such a way that its a defensive structure in itself. Firearms and good hand weapons would be good. if your truly worried about defense you could have a patrol set up to stop other groups of survivers going viking on you and stealing everything.

    Farming takes a certain amount of skill but lets say you have it all set up, make sure that you dont screw up the soil by drying it out. i think thats how the dust bowl started the farmers werent giving soil enough time to re mineralize or something so the soil dried up and farmers were unable to plant anything. this could spell out death for you in a survival situation so be careful dont try complicated farming unless you are able to. Otherwise hunt and gather a more complicated process but it wont waste your time and possibly kill you if you dont know how to farm.

    building is also essential to a community coming out of situation x. you will need to build houses, walls around your town because if your being realistic you might only have a couple of families so its like ten houses to build a wall around. they would also have to build and irragation system and set up places to keep human waste away from the village.




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