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SAN DIEGO — Six months ago, Jim Wiseman didn't even have a spare nutrition bar in his kitchen cabinet.
Now, the 54-year-old businessman and father of five has a backup generator, a water filter, a grain mill and a 4-foot-tall pile of emergency food tucked in his home in the San Diego suburb of La Jolla.
Wiseman isn't alone. Emergency supply retailers and military surplus stores nationwide have seen business boom in the past few months as more Americans spooked by the economy rush to stock up on gear that was once the domain of hard-core survivalists.
These people snapping up everything from water purification tablets to thermal blankets shatter the survivalist stereotype: They are mostly urban professionals with mortgages, SUVs, solid jobs and a twinge of embarrassment about their newfound hobby.
From teachers to real estate agents, these budding emergency gurus say the dismal economy has made them prepare for financial collapse as if it were an oncoming Category 5 hurricane. They worry about rampant inflation, runs on banks, bare grocery shelves and power failures that could make taps run dry...
...Art Markman, a cognitive psychologist, said he's not surprised by the reaction of some to the nation's financial woes, even though it may seem irrational. In an increasingly global and automated society, most people are dependent on strangers and systems they don't understand — and the human brain isn't programmed to work that way.
"We have no real causal understanding of the way our world works at all," said Markman, a professor at the University of Texas. "When times are good, you trust that things are working, but when times are bad, you realize you don't have a clue what you would do if the supermarket didn't have goods on the shelves and that if the banks disappear, you have no idea where your money is."
Originally posted by kosmicjack
now I'm kind of over it!