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Realistic SHTF scenarios - what would you do?

illigillig Registered User regular
edited September 2008 in Debate and/or Discourse
That's "Shit Hit The Fan" for those not in the know...

Anyway, for a while now I've been interested in near apocalyptic scenarios... Causes, outcomes, etc.

For a while, this interest manifested itself in a like for works of fiction about plagues (The Stand, 28 Days Later, I Am Legend), Zombies (Night of the Living Dead, Dawn of the Living Dead, Shaun of the Living Dead), war (Jericho, Red Dawn (Go Wolverines!)), etc.

But recently, I've been thinking about what would I do in a much more realistic scenario. To me, the realistic SHTF situations begin with large scale economic collapse, energy infrastructure collapse, a pandemic, large scale natural diseasters, or, most often, war.

Most importantly, these events don't end humanity as we know it, they just make life into living hell for a select population of people. Again, this is not about holing up in the basement with your honey, your shotgun, and a month's supply of canned beans, and protecting yourself from zombies.

I'm specifically talking about your normal living situation slowly worsening, while you still have to find some way to live, work, eat, entertain yourself, etc.

So let's say that an economic collapse has occurred. Basically, your comfortable, middle-class life in a 1st world country has been upturned.

1. You still have your home, family, etc.
2. You may still have a job, but your money is worth a lot less now due to runaway inflation. Your job is not that secure, however, and unemployment is rampant.
3. Public services have ceased due to lack of funds. This means that formerly safe areas are dangerous, as desperate people turn to crime to support themselves, and there are no police to stop them. There's very little sanitation, electricity is unreliable, hospitals are overcrowded, etc.
4. Basic necessities become difficult to obtain (i.e. gas, food, medicine) either due to short supply, or out of control price gauging

What do you do?

.......................................................................................................................................................


Now, many of us may chuckle at such what-ifs, since nothing like that could ever happen "here". But recent history has taught us that previously stable and even prosperous locales can turn to shit rather quickly. Iraq was stable before we arrived. New Orleans was a city, rather than a lake prior to Katrina. Indonesia was a vacation paradise before the tsunami, etc. etc.

I've picked out some very interesting essays on such situations from people who have lived through them. Please note that these focus on guns, since they're from weapon forums, but they contain lots of very good info either way:


Post Katrina New Orleans (short term SHTF):
http://www.frfrogspad.com/disastr.htm

Post Economic Collapse Argentina (long term SHTF):
http://www.frugalsquirrels.com/cgi-bin/ubb/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=1;t=044387;p=1

Post Invasion Iraq (really long term SHTF):
I had a good link for this but lost it... I'll update if I can find it.

illig on
«13

Posts

  • tbloxhamtbloxham Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Die of starvation, disease, exposure and thirst within a few weeks.

    If modern transport and economic networks broke down in the US to the extent you described, the death of a major fraction of the population would be an immediate byproduct, with most casulties in the big cities (within days, dehydration, starvation, looting) and isolated small rural areas (lack of medicine, lack of community support)

    If the town you live in does not contain a major grain silo and some kind of animal yard in addition to crop farming, and possibly a river, then you will probably die.

    Your puny weapons are useless against me
  • ShadowfireShadowfire Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    tbloxham wrote: »
    Die of starvation, disease, exposure and thirst within a few weeks.

    If modern transport and economic networks broke down in the US to the extent you described, the death of a major fraction of the population would be an immediate byproduct, with most casulties in the big cities (within days, dehydration, starvation, looting) and isolated small rural areas (lack of medicine, lack of community support)

    If the town you live in does not contain a major grain silo and some kind of animal yard in addition to crop farming, and possibly a river, then you will probably die.

    Rural areas will be hit immediately because of lack of medicine? I can think of once in the past three years that I've been on medication of any sort... I think folks in rural areas will probably be the safest.


    I remember during Katrina, there was a great blog from some folks who were running I believe a network hub for financial institutions and the like. It was amazing to read what they were going through, how they were arming and preparing themselves, and what they saw afterward. The amazing amount of bullshit they put up with (see below), and the first-hand accounts they gave of what was going on... it really drove home how difficult such a situation would be to survive.
    Spoiler:

    steam_sig.png
    WiiU: Windrunner ; Guild Wars 2: Shadowfire.3940 ; PSN: Bradcopter
  • tbloxhamtbloxham Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Shadowfire wrote: »
    tbloxham wrote: »
    Die of starvation, disease, exposure and thirst within a few weeks.

    If modern transport and economic networks broke down in the US to the extent you described, the death of a major fraction of the population would be an immediate byproduct, with most casulties in the big cities (within days, dehydration, starvation, looting) and isolated small rural areas (lack of medicine, lack of community support)

    If the town you live in does not contain a major grain silo and some kind of animal yard in addition to crop farming, and possibly a river, then you will probably die.

    Rural areas will be hit immediately because of lack of medicine? I can think of once in the past three years that I've been on medication of any sort... I think folks in rural areas will probably be the safest.


    I remember during Katrina, there was a great blog from some folks who were running I believe a network hub for financial institutions and the like. It was amazing to read what they were going through, how they were arming and preparing themselves, and what they saw afterward. The amazing amount of bullshit they put up with (see below), and the first-hand accounts they gave of what was going on... it really drove home how difficult such a situation would be to survive.
    Spoiler:

    I meant to put "over the coming months" in the rural area. The people with the best chance are those living in communities of about 500-3000 surrounded by farming, with some local health, water processing and government establishments. Small enough to likely be storing more than 2 meals worth of stockpiled food, likely for export, large enough that some kind of security, mutual support and resource sharing/trading can be established.

    Your puny weapons are useless against me
  • King Boo HooKing Boo Hoo Registered User
    edited August 2008
    I've been spending my entire life getting an education towards a PhD in Psychology, but even if I were to get it before this Apocalypse, it's not what I'd be practicing (even though psychologists were the only ones whose business was doing well during Great Depression).
    No I'd turn to my other skill, fine-tuned in WoW (ironic, right?), but requring no education. Simple economics and trading. Buy low, sell high. I have a really good knack for that kind of stuff, providing I find relatively un-regulated un-sophisticated markets. Video game markets are ideal because I can buy and sell at near-whatever-prices I want, since few people know what the average price for the item is, like they would for a stock, and even fewer people know when to buy/sell items based on when prices go up/down. In the real world, my plans wouldn't work but in a destroyed economy, I'd quickly become a local God.
    I'd deal in all sorts of things, trade supplies, canned foods, clothing, etc. I'd slowly but surely build up more and more fortune, cunningly convincing people they're getting good deals when in fact they're getting ripped off but have no way to know it.
    I mean ultimately I wouldn't be as bad of a guy as I make it sound. I'd be making profit off all this, enough to live comfortably, but truthfully I wouldn't be taking much money out of the economy with my ventures, and in return I'll have spread a lot of commodities to a lot of people who otherwise wouldn't have gotten it. So I'm not really a bad guy, it's just fun to think of it that way.

  • SeptusSeptus Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    What would I do?

    Get the hell out of dodge with all my necessary possessions(if it's a disaster where there's a mass exodus, I save time and just bolt with the essentials), and head west to some family land we've got. With so much rural area down here, we'd have relatively good personal safety I think, a good supply of meat(we'd have to work on growing crops and/or find our best supply lines for produce), and there's a good source of fresh water.

    Medical supplies become an issue, but then I don't think my situation would be much worse than a city, with a highly concentrated population clamoring for the meds, and subsequently causing dangerous crime.

    rodq.jpg
  • tbloxhamtbloxham Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I've been spending my entire life getting an education towards a PhD in Psychology, but even if I were to get it before this Apocalypse, it's not what I'd be practicing (even though psychologists were the only ones whose business was doing well during Great Depression).
    No I'd turn to my other skill, fine-tuned in WoW (ironic, right?), but requring no education. Simple economics and trading. Buy low, sell high. I have a really good knack for that kind of stuff, providing I find relatively un-regulated un-sophisticated markets. Video game markets are ideal because I can buy and sell at near-whatever-prices I want, since few people know what the average price for the item is, like they would for a stock, and even fewer people know when to buy/sell items based on when prices go up/down. In the real world, my plans wouldn't work but in a destroyed economy, I'd quickly become a local God.
    I'd deal in all sorts of things, trade supplies, canned foods, clothing, etc. I'd slowly but surely build up more and more fortune, cunningly convincing people they're getting good deals when in fact they're getting ripped off but have no way to know it.
    I mean ultimately I wouldn't be as bad of a guy as I make it sound. I'd be making profit off all this, enough to live comfortably, but truthfully I wouldn't be taking much money out of the economy with my ventures, and in return I'll have spread a lot of commodities to a lot of people who otherwise wouldn't have gotten it. So I'm not really a bad guy, it's just fun to think of it that way.

    So your plan is to become a profiteer and exploit the suffering of others for your own gain? Well, thats why we just built ourselves a gallows and noose over there in our brand new hangin' square...

    Your puny weapons are useless against me
  • Casually HardcoreCasually Hardcore Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    If the world is going to hell...well join in the fun! There's no point in trying to isolate yourself from 8 billion people.

    The ones who are most likely to survive are the never before discovered tribes in some rain forest somewhere. For the rest of us, it's going to boil down to luck.

    steam_sig.png
  • DetharinDetharin Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    When my mother first started discovering just how fucked up things can get, and in some ways are starting to get she wanted to buy gold to barter with. This is what I told her and i think it bears repeating. If you can't eat it, drink it, smoke it, fuck it, or shoot it no one is going to want it.

    If I was kidnapped, woke up in a lab, told they were going to replace my vocal cords with those of Tony Jay, and lock me in a sound booth until the day I die I would look those bastards right in the eye and say "Alright you sons of bitches lets do this. This one is for the children."
  • GoodOmensGoodOmens Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    If the world is going to hell...well join in the fun! There's no point in trying to isolate yourself from 8 billion people.

    Especially when there's only about 6.6 billion right now. If the catastrophe results in an extra billion and a half people, there will be real trouble.

    steam_sig.png
    IOS Game Center ID: Isotope-X
  • Robos A Go GoRobos A Go Go Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Learn how to grow pot, I guess. I mean, people are going to need something to make it all that much more tolerable, and so will I.

    And I would find customers through a fake suicide hotline.

  • VeegeezeeVeegeezee Registered User
    edited August 2008
    I found the appropriate response to these situations a long time ago.
    Spoiler:

  • WerdnaWerdna Registered User
    edited August 2008
    I would make a great dinner and take the fam out to a movie, then feed them poison at bedtime.

    Free of obligation, I would then be free to roam the land and become a murdering cannibal -- occasionally setting fire to places of refuge.

  • JohnnyCacheJohnnyCache Starting Defense Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I would just grab my paranoid emergency bag, my gun, and head for the wilderness in my overbuilt suv.

  • darklite_xdarklite_x I can't find Turner and HoochRegistered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I'm with the government. I'll be fine. Until we have to put down the unruly masses, that is.

    0b3ZR.jpg
    Steam ID: darklite_x Xbox Gamertag: Darklite 37
  • RocketSauceRocketSauce Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I would just grab my paranoid emergency bag, my gun, and head for the wilderness in my overbuilt suv.

    Yeah, this
    Spoiler:

  • JohnnyCacheJohnnyCache Starting Defense Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    As long as you stay one mile away from my mountain at all times, you may keep your little "government"

  • monikermoniker Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Survive.

    Barring that, die.

    tea-1.jpg
  • JohnnyCacheJohnnyCache Starting Defense Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    In all seriousness, I'd be fine for about a year, and then I'd have to raid a town for new books.

  • real_pochaccoreal_pochacco Registered User
    edited August 2008
    Basically I would be utterly fucked and dependent on other people around me. I am not a hard worker, I complain a lot, I don't know how to hunt, shoot a gun, I can't run very fast or far, I have no resources or anything like that. I can't make my own food from scratch, I can't do all numbers of things that someone would have to be able to do to survive in one of these situations.

    My only hope would be to go for a skinnier Hurley type role, or something.

    I would probably go with my girlfriend to eastern Oregon, into the mountains, and because she's a lot more clueful than me we might actually have a chance of surviving.

  • OrganichuOrganichu Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I'm physically able, and I have some requisite knowledge with firearms and self defense to encounter a one on one encounter with a crazy. However I know nothing about wilderness survival or sustaining myself with wild foods.

    I'd probably die before I made use of my guns.

    XMSODhjrer45.gif
  • real_pochaccoreal_pochacco Registered User
    edited August 2008
    I think one of the big things would be drinkable water, because it doesn't matter how much you hunt or gather if you don't have any water.

  • HonkHonk Registered User, __BANNED USERS regular
    edited August 2008
    You form a small crew and build up some sort of agricultural society in a remote area somewhere. If people come to disturb you just sacrifice them to Lord Moloch!

  • Wonder_HippieWonder_Hippie __BANNED USERS
    edited August 2008
    My dad left me a fucking stockpile of rifles and ammunition, as well as training me from youth how to use them. I've been anti-gun my entire life. Some shit like this happens? I'm loading myself up with as many guns, MREs, and as much ammunition as I can carry. I'm getting on my Harley and making for the safest border available.

    Spoiler:
  • FallingmanFallingman Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I know a couple of people that live fairly sustainably. I think if it all hit the fan, a group of us would go up there, and make preparations that means we could be as self sufficient as is possible. Gotta love having hippie friends.

    My faith in humanity isnt done any favours by people reaching for a gun as soon as they are faced with the prospect of not having everything at their fingertips. But then I guess most of these people will then take said guns to the nearest convenience store... What happens next is probably better for the rest of the populace.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • OrganichuOrganichu Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Fallingman wrote: »
    .My faith in humanity isnt done any favours by people reaching for a gun as soon as they are faced with the prospect of not having everything at their fingertips. But then I guess most of these people will then take said guns to the nearest convenience store... What happens next is probably better for the rest of the populace.

    I'm pretty sure the gun comments aren't meant as in "knock over a 7-11", but as in "protect myself from crazy, land-roving brigands".

    XMSODhjrer45.gif
  • KageraKagera Imitating the worst people. Since 2004Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Pretty much die.

    My survival chances in a SHTF scenario are nil.

    Unless I'm a lucky bastard.

    My neck, my back, my FUPA and my crack.
  • FallingmanFallingman Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Organichu wrote: »
    Fallingman wrote: »
    .My faith in humanity isnt done any favours by people reaching for a gun as soon as they are faced with the prospect of not having everything at their fingertips. But then I guess most of these people will then take said guns to the nearest convenience store... What happens next is probably better for the rest of the populace.

    I'm pretty sure the gun comments aren't meant as in "knock over a 7-11", but as in "protect myself from crazy, land-roving brigands".

    I'm sure that's their intention... But if everyone has 'protection', and resources are limited... Escalations would happen extremely quickly. If your family is hungry and you have a gun - I assume that your priorities shift.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • Wonder_HippieWonder_Hippie __BANNED USERS
    edited August 2008
    I'd just be trying to get the fuck out of America as quickly as possible. It must be noted that I'm positively surrounded by gun-toting nutjobs in this area. The shear amount of them in my neighborhood alone disturbs me.

    Spoiler:
  • FallingmanFallingman Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I guess these situations would be hugely different depending on where you live. Where I'm from, people would probably band together and help each other out... Which, ultimately would make for a really boring post apocalyptic scenario. And of course, nobody has guns.

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • Wonder_HippieWonder_Hippie __BANNED USERS
    edited August 2008
    I wish that was true of my area. There's a fued going on between the crazy drunken ex-marine that had a dishonorable discharge and his crazy drunken racist neighbor. The marine put a GATech banner on his front porch, so the other guy put a UGA banner on his and tore down and burned the marine's banner.

    So the marine marched over there with an AR-15. Mhmm. I'm getting the fuck out of dodge.

    Spoiler:
  • BogartBogart Mr. Lady Anime Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    My secret space shuttles will ferry a handpicked group of perfect human specimens to my space station where we will wait a few years for the disaster to fade away. Then we shall descend, inherit the Earth and make it a new Garden of Eden.
    Spoiler:

  • OrganichuOrganichu Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I presume the female specimens will be... adequate.

    XMSODhjrer45.gif
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I'd probably go rock up to my former reservist unit and hope to get re-issued a Steyr.

  • Space CoyoteSpace Coyote Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    I would have a nice cup of tea and a sit down, and encourage others to do the same. Maybe have some nice biscuits, as well.

  • GorakGorak Registered User
    edited August 2008
    I work at a food cannery so I'd grab a couple of mates with vans and load up with a year or two's worth of food. After that, there are a couple of remotish petrol stations that I'd hit up. Other than that, I live in the suburbs of a city that's large enough to be able to do some useful looting, but not so big you can't get away from it quickly.

    My brother and some other friends also work at a brewery so I think we'd be alright.

  • Bullfrogof7272Bullfrogof7272 Registered User
    edited August 2008
    tbloxham wrote: »
    I've been spending my entire life getting an education towards a PhD in Psychology, but even if I were to get it before this Apocalypse, it's not what I'd be practicing (even though psychologists were the only ones whose business was doing well during Great Depression).
    No I'd turn to my other skill, fine-tuned in WoW (ironic, right?), but requring no education. Simple economics and trading. Buy low, sell high. I have a really good knack for that kind of stuff, providing I find relatively un-regulated un-sophisticated markets. Video game markets are ideal because I can buy and sell at near-whatever-prices I want, since few people know what the average price for the item is, like they would for a stock, and even fewer people know when to buy/sell items based on when prices go up/down. In the real world, my plans wouldn't work but in a destroyed economy, I'd quickly become a local God.
    I'd deal in all sorts of things, trade supplies, canned foods, clothing, etc. I'd slowly but surely build up more and more fortune, cunningly convincing people they're getting good deals when in fact they're getting ripped off but have no way to know it.
    I mean ultimately I wouldn't be as bad of a guy as I make it sound. I'd be making profit off all this, enough to live comfortably, but truthfully I wouldn't be taking much money out of the economy with my ventures, and in return I'll have spread a lot of commodities to a lot of people who otherwise wouldn't have gotten it. So I'm not really a bad guy, it's just fun to think of it that way.

    So your plan is to become a profiteer and exploit the suffering of others for your own gain? Well, thats why we just built ourselves a gallows and noose over there in our brand new hangin' square...

    see the problem with your plan is, that in an uncontrolled market like the one you are proposing, it wll only take one person to see through what you are doing get pissed, kill you, and take over your operation.

    the hammer, is my penis.
  • poshnialloposhniallo Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    tbloxham wrote: »
    I've been spending my entire life getting an education towards a PhD in Psychology, but even if I were to get it before this Apocalypse, it's not what I'd be practicing (even though psychologists were the only ones whose business was doing well during Great Depression).
    No I'd turn to my other skill, fine-tuned in WoW (ironic, right?), but requring no education. Simple economics and trading. Buy low, sell high. I have a really good knack for that kind of stuff, providing I find relatively un-regulated un-sophisticated markets. Video game markets are ideal because I can buy and sell at near-whatever-prices I want, since few people know what the average price for the item is, like they would for a stock, and even fewer people know when to buy/sell items based on when prices go up/down. In the real world, my plans wouldn't work but in a destroyed economy, I'd quickly become a local God.
    I'd deal in all sorts of things, trade supplies, canned foods, clothing, etc. I'd slowly but surely build up more and more fortune, cunningly convincing people they're getting good deals when in fact they're getting ripped off but have no way to know it.
    I mean ultimately I wouldn't be as bad of a guy as I make it sound. I'd be making profit off all this, enough to live comfortably, but truthfully I wouldn't be taking much money out of the economy with my ventures, and in return I'll have spread a lot of commodities to a lot of people who otherwise wouldn't have gotten it. So I'm not really a bad guy, it's just fun to think of it that way.

    So your plan is to become a profiteer and exploit the suffering of others for your own gain? Well, thats why we just built ourselves a gallows and noose over there in our brand new hangin' square...

    see the problem with your plan is, that in an uncontrolled market like the one you are proposing, it wll only take one person to see through what you are doing get pissed, kill you, and take over your operation.

    I'd be that man.

    Actually, I need medicine to survive, so I'd die. Soon. But I'd definitely take over the little piggie's shop first.

    I figure I could take a bear.
  • King Boo HooKing Boo Hoo Registered User
    edited August 2008
    tbloxham wrote: »
    I've been spending my entire life getting an education towards a PhD in Psychology, but even if I were to get it before this Apocalypse, it's not what I'd be practicing (even though psychologists were the only ones whose business was doing well during Great Depression).
    No I'd turn to my other skill, fine-tuned in WoW (ironic, right?), but requring no education. Simple economics and trading. Buy low, sell high. I have a really good knack for that kind of stuff, providing I find relatively un-regulated un-sophisticated markets. Video game markets are ideal because I can buy and sell at near-whatever-prices I want, since few people know what the average price for the item is, like they would for a stock, and even fewer people know when to buy/sell items based on when prices go up/down. In the real world, my plans wouldn't work but in a destroyed economy, I'd quickly become a local God.
    I'd deal in all sorts of things, trade supplies, canned foods, clothing, etc. I'd slowly but surely build up more and more fortune, cunningly convincing people they're getting good deals when in fact they're getting ripped off but have no way to know it.
    I mean ultimately I wouldn't be as bad of a guy as I make it sound. I'd be making profit off all this, enough to live comfortably, but truthfully I wouldn't be taking much money out of the economy with my ventures, and in return I'll have spread a lot of commodities to a lot of people who otherwise wouldn't have gotten it. So I'm not really a bad guy, it's just fun to think of it that way.

    So your plan is to become a profiteer and exploit the suffering of others for your own gain? Well, thats why we just built ourselves a gallows and noose over there in our brand new hangin' square...

    see the problem with your plan is, that in an uncontrolled market like the one you are proposing, it wll only take one person to see through what you are doing get pissed, kill you, and take over your operation.

    It's all how you play the community.

    When you start off small, no one feels the need to kill you. Need buttons? I hear Hruka has random crap like that, and he doesn't charge crazy prices (because hell, who knows how much buttons should cost when you don't have any?).

    Now, the key is to be "one of the guys". You don't charge $100 for medicine you got for $5, especially if anyone knows you got it for $5. Nah, you hold the medicine. And then when someone is looking for it and someone else offers it for $20, you go, hold on, I think I saw some in that shed of mine, lemme check. Ah, we've been friends for a long time, I'll give it to you for $10. Suddenly, you're the guy who saved the day with your generosity.
    If it progresses as it does in MMORPGs (which may sound silly but appears to be accurate), you'll eventually get enough of a name that people may contact you looking for stuff, rather than you just yelling about what you have. If you have it, you have to scratch your head as if you don't know how much it's worth, eventually come up with some not-too-high number, say $20 for an item you bought for $10, but then rapidly change your mind and go "Ah, what the hell, just give me $15 for it, I know times are tough, gotta make sure we all eat."
    If you don't have the item, awesome. You get to look all sad and apologetic, and then once the person leaves you start looking for it frantically. Since you buy/sell a lot, you must have more contacts than the guy coming to you, so you ask around until you find it. You catch the guy again once you have the object and give him this bright-eyed-im-so-proud-of-myself look, so that he knows you put a ton of effort into getting it. You tell him how hard it was but that you knew he really needed it so you pulled a bunch of strings, and then you charge him 50% over how much you got it for, as usual.
    The system works great in an uncontrolled market because:
    1. You leave no paper trail, no one knows precisely how much stuff costs you to buy, and unless you buy yourself a yacht or charge insanely ridiculous prices, no one will suspect you're doing anything. Especially if you're coming off as the helpful guy who just searches a lot for the common folk.
    2. If someone calls you out on a price "hey, the guy last week said soup was only $1 a can" you can either say 'hah, good job catching that, i admit i had a momentary lapse in memory and couldnt remember how much i paid to get this". Or you can look upset and say "damn, i spent $2 a can to get this! i got ripped off. blah!" and then you're safe again.
    3. No one is going to "take over your business" simply because you make it clear there is no "business". You're not walking around in a top-hat and a cigar, you're just one of the regular folks who happens to know some people who have stuff. You may actually possess a large storeroom of items, but that doesn't need to be general information. Simply put, you appear to be getting by alright, nothing fancy, and everyone is made to assume you just have some buttons and soupcans in your shed, and anything else people ask for you scratch your head and tell them you'll go ask around about it.

    At all times, the idea is that you deflect people's upsetness about prices and quantities and life in general away from you and towards the world in general, or towards others. I'm sorry this costs so much, but I only paid $1 less for it from the guy I got it from. I'm really upset that so many people want this bike I managed to find, but I only have 1. I don't know how to decide who should get it, but my friend recommended we just do one of them silent auctions like they used to do back in the day. I wish I had bikes for everyone, but I just can't bear to have to pick favorites over this, so I'm just letting my friend Bob here take over the auction idea... hopefully it'll work out well.

    You're never a powerful strong influential man. You're just friendly, loveable, one of the "people". You never appear especially cunning, people always feel like they got some good deal off of ya, maybe even tricked you into ripping yourself off. You try as hard as you can, and are deeply upset that you can't please everyone.
    It works remarkably well in MMORPGs anyway, but the things I've said I take partly from real life, partly from the virtual world, and partly just from knowledge of how people think and act.

  • Bullfrogof7272Bullfrogof7272 Registered User
    edited August 2008
    I see a lot of supposition here, and we aren't talking about people's avatars in WoW, we're talking real people who are in dire need of the items you are giving them at a profit. People do some crazy shit when driven by desperation, like kill you and take all your stuff, you may not present it as being a "business" but if things have really declined to such an extent as what we're talking about here, then the idea of what a business is will be exactly what you have outlined. People will realize you must have a random store of crap and either raid when you aren't looking or shoot you in the face and take it. The scenario you've outlined also assumes you have an estabished network of people who are willing to trade with you, which takes an incredibly long time to develop.

    the hammer, is my penis.
  • JohnnyCacheJohnnyCache Starting Defense Registered User regular
    edited August 2008
    Well, two things, man - you can kill them back for fucking with your business, and you can't give your shit away unless you want your living to be killing people for their shit in return.

    Economies do emerge in lawless zones. Look at the early history of say Deadwood, South Dakota.

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