FlipBoard

Welcome to our new Magazine format! All new content will now be brought to you in this easy, new format. All our older content can still be found by scrolling below. Simply click the ">" to start the magazine and navigate via your arrow keys.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Beware of TEOTWAWKI Prophets

One of the things that survivalism suffers from is an over-abundance of self-proclaimed prophets, experts and others who can supposedly see into the future and predict the end of the world. They also, of course, want to make a quick buck off of your concerns.

Here's a few signs to watch for:
  • Only they have the truth about a situation, whether through their expertise, predicting-abilities, or whatever. No one else sees what's coming, only them and those who listen to them.
  • Their prediction of what's coming are always extreme--the world will certainly end, the dollar will be worth nothing, society will collapse, you'll meet a gang of angry Cartel assassins tomorrow.
  • They spend most of their time talking about the consequences of not listening to them--you'll die, be financially ruined, etc.
  • Their supporting facts are often confusing, non-related, dramatic leaps of logic or simply outright guesses.
  • They claim to have predicted things correctly in the past, though they tend to not provide any evidence in support.
  • Often rely on the fact that similar events seem easy to predict in retrospect--focus on the so-called signs that we had of the impending previous crisis.
  • Always have other motives--buy their product, give them money, join their group.
Here's a few things to remember:
  • A prediction is just a guess...it might be an educated guess, but it's still just a guess.
  • Past performance does not predict future performance. Ok, so they happened to guess something correctly in the past; that's chance.
  • Even the best statistical forecasting models are not particularly accurate, and the further in the future you get, the less accurate they become. Forecasting with statistics can at best give you an educated guess.
  • So, realize that at best, everyone is making educated guesses. Some more educated than others, but most, not so much. Why would you want to give your hard-earned money to someone for a guess?
  • They're using your fears and concerns as a manipulative sales tool...not a particularly trustworthy marketing approach, is it? 
  • If they're so good at predicting the future (especially the financial experts) why are they trying to sell you some lame product?
Yep, it's one of the dark sides of survivalism--people promoting and profiting from the fears of others. Be very wary of these so-called TEOTWAWKI prophets--do not trust them. 
Trying to predict extreme, rare, high-impact events (Black Swans) is an unreliable guessing game. Instead, focus on being able to weather whatever events may occur--build strength and resilience in your home, finances and preparations, and in your extended family and community. Do your best to mitigate the effects that a Black Swan can have on you, then live your life with confidence, certainty and faith.