Why Prep, Part 3 Triggers & Stressors

Why Prep, Part 3 Triggers & Stressors

Note from Andrew: The complete Why Prep Series has now been consolidated HERE.

Today we present the third article in our series on why to prepare for disaster.  In the first article, ‘Why Prep, The Introduction’ we asked and answered the following question:

Question:  Why Prep…why become more self-reliant?

Answer:  Because it’s the only reasonable and logical response to an unknown future and even a cursory study of history.

In the second article, ‘Why Prep, Historical and Current Examples’ we discussed examples of places and periods where preparedness could have made the difference between survival and suffering (or worse) for you and your family.  In this third installment we’ll discuss stressors and triggers for potential The End Of The World As We Know It (TEOTWAWKI) situations.

Today we’re going to talk about stressor events and triggers.  A stressor event is an occurrence that has the potential to change a system or society.  Stressor events happen all the time and can vary dramatically in the amount of stress or influence they place on a system.  Some examples of stressor events are election outcomes, legislation, trade wars, disease outbreaks, government spending programs, wars, acts of terror, social movements, development or loss of key infrastructure (like the internet you’re browsing), information releases (like the Watergate scandal) or changes to the physical environment (like drought or natural disasters).  From a societal standpoint, stressors often manifest themselves in multiples and if significant enough disruption occurs…they can create a situation that cascades out of control.  While it’s an overly simplified model think of these stressors from the last century:

  1. Germany loses World War I and a large percentage of its reproductive age males
  2. War damage and reparations create severe economic hardship
  3. Rise of the National Socialism in Germany bringing Adolf Hitler and his Brownshirts to power (were the Brownshirts easier to recruit due to a lack of fatherly guidance?)
  4. Election of 1933 gives Hitler enough power in the Reichstag to pass the Enabling Act and assume dictatorial powers

This example from history led to TEOTWAWKI for much of the world from the mid 1930’s to the mid 1940’s and eventually ushered in the atomic age.

Don’t make the mistake of placing too much concern on any one stressor.  Very few single stressors are powerful enough to become single event triggers.  Single event triggers are events so dramatic that they can rapidly change the world in a significant way even without additional stressors.  Several possible single event triggers are:  an asteroid strike, severe volcanic eruption(s), a coronal mass ejection (CME) or wide scale electro-magnetic pulse (EMP) attack.

Another example of a trigger is the minor event that results from and sets off existing stressors in cascade.  An example of this type of stressor was the assassination of Archduke Ferdinand in 1914.  This killing was the trigger that plunged the world into four years of war.  A minor event like this was capable of creating TEOTWAWKI (at least for Europe and the European colonies) because of the stressors then in place on society like nationalist movements, historic animosities and a widespread networks of military alliances…some of which were secret.

Generally, it’s the cumulative affects of multiple stressors and a trigger that creates cascading disasters that we need to beware.  At any given time there are a number of these stressor events ongoing at the local, regional, national and international levels.  As long as these stressors don’t reach ‘critical mass’ it won’t be TEOTWAWKI…however, even a localized event, hardship, or a family tragedy can be The End Of The World As You Know It (TEOTWAYKI).  Listed below are potential stressors and triggers that have the ability to reshape the world as we know it.  Follow the links for additional information on the net or use the comment section below to add to the conversation.

Political Triggers & StressorsTaxation

Military Triggers & Stressors

Economic Triggers & StressorsHyperinflation

  • Central Bank mismanagement.  Do you know who runs The FedPrinting money (Quantitative Easing) leading to inflation or hyperinflation.  The following countries have experienced hyperinflation in the past century:  Argentina, Brazil, China, Chile, Bulgaria, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Israel, Japan, Nicaragua, Peru, the Philippines, Poland, Romania, Russia, Taiwan, Turkey, Ukraine, Yugoslavia, and Zimbabwe
  • Food Inflation leading to a disproportionate share of household income being spent on food.  Food inflation can be from economic or other forces like drought or famine.  How are the crops looking in your neck of the woods this summer?  Another article.
  • The risk created by interconnected financial markets with the potential to create a cascading worldwide financial collapse from a single event like a bad derivatives bet.
  • Pension Underfunding especially in the public sector leading municipal governments to declare bankruptcy.
  • Social Security’s solvency issues

Social Triggers & Stressors

Infrastructure Triggers & Stressors

Information Triggers & Stressors

Physical Environment Triggers & StressorsNatural Disaster


Given enough time the combination of the stressors and triggers listed above is guaranteed to create a situation where preparedness means the difference between safety or suffering…and perhaps your family’s very survival.  As we mentioned in the opening…preparedness is the only reasonable and logical response to an unknown future and even a cursory study of history…and current events.

Stay tuned for the final installment of our series ‘Why Prep’ next week when we discuss individual and family disasters.  Don’t miss a day of Prepography…use the handy E-mail subscription sign-up field at the top left of this webpage to sign up and select daily or weekly updates.

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2 Responses to “Why Prep, Part 3 Triggers & Stressors”

  1. Vince says:

    In regards to peak oil…. The US Navy is experimenting with bio diesel under orders from the President. It is drawing a large amount of resources from other programs including maintenance and ship building. It has been done for political correctness to “green” the military.

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