Once upon a time, “prepping” was something that was considered to be on “the lunatic fringe” of society. But in 2017, wealthy elitists are actually the most hardcore preppers of all. This is particularly true in places such as Silicon Valley, where a whole host of young tech moguls are putting a tremendous amount of time, effort and money into preparing for apocalyptic scenarios. So while interest in prepping among the general population has fallen extremely low right now, the election of Donald Trump has given liberal wealthy elitists even more urgency to prepare for what they believe is a very uncertain future.
In the January 30th, 2017 edition of the New Yorker, reporter Evan Osnos has done an extraordinary job of profiling these wealthy elitists that are “getting ready for the crackup of civilization”. One of the people that he interviewed was Steve Huffman, the young co-founder and CEO of Reddit…
Huffman, who lives in San Francisco, has large blue eyes, thick, sandy hair, and an air of restless curiosity; at the University of Virginia, he was a competitive ballroom dancer, who hacked his roommate’s Web site as a prank. He is less focussed on a specific threat—a quake on the San Andreas, a pandemic, a dirty bomb—than he is on the aftermath, “the temporary collapse of our government and structures,” as he puts it. “I own a couple of motorcycles. I have a bunch of guns and ammo. Food. I figure that, with that, I can hole up in my house for some amount of time.”
According to the article, Huffman estimates that “fifty-plus percent” of his elite friends in Silicon Valley have some form of “apocalypse insurance”. Needless to say, that number would be far higher than for the general population as a whole.
Another tech mogul that was interviewed by Osnos for the story was former Facebook product manager Antonio García Martínez…
Last spring, as the Presidential campaign exposed increasingly toxic divisions in America, Antonio García Martínez, a forty-year-old former Facebook product manager living in San Francisco, bought five wooded acres on an island in the Pacific Northwest and brought in generators, solar panels, and thousands of rounds of ammunition. “When society loses a healthy founding myth, it descends into chaos,” he told me. The author of “Chaos Monkeys,” an acerbic Silicon Valley memoir, García Martínez wanted a refuge that would be far from cities but not entirely isolated. “All these dudes think that one guy alone could somehow withstand the roving mob,” he said. “No, you’re going to need to form a local militia. You just need so many things to actually ride out the apocalypse.” Once he started telling peers in the Bay Area about his “little island project,” they came “out of the woodwork” to describe their own preparations, he said. “I think people who are particularly attuned to the levers by which society actually works understand that we are skating on really thin cultural ice right now.”
As you can see, a lot of these liberal elitists are actually secretly stashing away lots of guns and ammunition.
So don’t believe everything that you read about them being “anti-gun”.
Other big names in Silicon Valley have decided that having a property on the other side of the planet is the best form of “apocalypse insurance”. The following comes from a story about Paypal founder Peter Thiel in the New York Times…
Mr. Thiel’s admiration for New Zealand is longstanding. “Utopia,” he once called it. He has an investment firm in the country that has put millions into local start-ups. He also owns lavish properties there, which his Silicon Valley friends hope to fly to in the event of a worldwide pandemic.
And of course Thiel is far from alone. So many wealthy individuals are buying up property in New Zealand these days that it is actually becoming a significant political issue over there. In fact, it is being reported that foreigners purchased an astounding 3500 square kilometers during the first ten months of 2016…
Statistics showed foreigners had bought over 3500 square kilometers of New Zealand in the first ten months of 2016, which is over four times as much as they did in the same period in 2010.
LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman told The New Yorker that New Zealand had become the hot topic among Silicon Valley leaders lately.
“Saying you’re ‘buying a house in New Zealand’ is kind of a wink, wink, say no more. Once you’ve done the Masonic handshake, they’ll be, like, ‘Oh, you know, I have a broker who sells old ICBM silos, and they’re nuclear-hardened, and they kind of look like they would be interesting to live in.”
Hoffman estimated that over half of the Silicon Valley insiders were into preparedness – especially since anti-elite sentiment has risen around the globe in recent years. It was intensified by events like Brexit and the election of Donald Trump, he added.
So are these wealthy elitists ahead of the curve, or are they just being paranoid?
Only time will tell, but they didn’t become exceedingly wealthy in the first place by being stupid.
As I discussed yesterday on The Most Important News, there are certainly reasons to be optimistic now that Donald Trump has become president, but there are also lots of reasons to be prepping harder than ever.
We should be hopeful for the future and working for a better tomorrow, but we also need to understand that we live in a world that is becoming increasingly unstable.
And most of us think that it is just common sense to purchase insurance for our homes, our cars, our health, our lives and so many other things, and yet most of the population is completely unprepared for a major catastrophic event.
It is a good thing to have balance in life. My wife and I are very proud preppers, and there won’t ever be a time when we aren’t prepping.
But we also live our lives without any fear. We know that the world is going to get crazier and crazier, but we do not believe that it is a time to dig a hole and try to hide from the world.
Rather, now is a time to rise up and become the people that we were created to be.
This year my wife and I are going to be taking on some new adventures, and these new adventures are going to give us a bigger voice than ever before.
Someone once told me that life is like a coin. You can spend it any way that you want, but you can only spend it once.
We don’t want to spend our lives paying bills and killing time.
Instead, we want to do all that we can to make a difference and to change the world.
So unlike these wealthy elitists, let us not be in fear of what is coming. There is no other time in history that I would have rather lived than right here and right now, and I can’t wait to see what comes next.
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