As I study the aspects of survival in the coming times I am struck by the picture that the earthquake in Haiti has presented to the world. A natural disaster of the worst type, striking without any prior warning, bringing devastation to a struggling nation and turning it into bedlam and chaos. While not the strongest of earthquakes to be recorded in recent times, the result typifies what human reaction will be in any given disaster. (The recent California earthquake was listed as a 7.1 on the Richter scale, while the Haiti earthquake was listed at 7.0.) After the initial shock, realization of the situation sets in and then the real tragedy begins. Unprepared for such an event the nation was hurled into chaotic uselessness even as aid and relief began to pour in from outside its borders.

There are uncountable sites, articles, videos and still pictures describing the situation in Haiti, so I won’t go into that aspect here, but what we need to ask ourselves what lessons we can learn from Haiti and the resulting situation they are currently undergoing. What survival lessons can be gleaned from this tragedy? I had written a while back, in Zombie Looters part one and part two about some of the things we can expect to see here in the US after a major meltdown, which is what Haiti has gone through. I had received a couple of comments that this sort of thing would never happen here in the US, as we are too civilized a country, and this would not occur here. If only that were true.

We need to remember that humans are humans, no matter the nation or belief. The headlines from the last couple of days scream LOOTERS! Picture after picture show people rummaging through devastated businesses and stealing whatever they can, no matter the value of the item. We saw the same thing after Katrina hit New Orleans, so the nation makes no difference. The difference is in the way that nation reacts to that level of humanity. There are several troubling aspects that come to mind as I look over the headlines and various media covering the disaster, and one thing in particular stands out. That is that while the UN was already in Haiti providing aid, their buildings and personnel suffered major losses, and because they were ill prepared for the disaster were unable to cope with the situation.

I’ve never been a big fan of the UN, and in my opinion they should be dissolved, and this situation just adds support to my position. All too often well meaning people support the UN believing that the UN will help those people with the aid funding they give to the UN. More often , the cash goes towards enlarging the UNs own infrastructure an bureaucracy, leaving them without the resources needed to respond to these disasters. Fortunately, the US stepped in, as we always do and took control of the situation, and order is slowly emerging from this chaos.

It also comes to mind that in nearly all globally significant events that require aid from other nations where the UN is involved, those nations are mired in a welfare mindset, and not a survival mindset. Instead of encouraging these countries to expand their own ability to grow their infrastructure and bureaucracy, they are instead encouraged to rely upon handouts and gifts from the UN and other countries. They are countries where the government controls everything from food to medical care, highways to electrical distribution, water and sewer to the airports. This, I believe, is why the response to the earthquake in Haiti has been somewhat botched by that nation. Instead of taking control and driving their own relief and infrastructure to tend to the recovery, the government of Haiti seemed to sit on its hands and let others take control.

And this is one of the fears that I have regarding the ability of the United States to respond to its own calamities in the future. We are running away from a free market economy that encourages us to tend to our own needs. We are running away from a position that exemplifies personal responsibility and preparedness. We are instead racing towards a welfare society where those who have little, will lose what they have. And so won’t everyone else. Rich or poor, the time will come whereby we will be unable to take charge of our own disasters, and instead be forced to rely upon outside forces to tell us what to do, and they will provide for our needs. There are many lessons we can learn from this tragedy in Haiti.

In much the same way as the parable of the talents, we can develop a model of what this nation really should be about. We should be investing what we have to not only make profit, but to prepare for the future needs of this country. We need to be stockpiling supplies to provide for infrastructure breakdown. We need to be developing alternative transportation routes to move these supplies to where they may be needed most. We need to develop extra medical relief in the way of both supplies and personnel to cover for expanded needs. We need to do much to prepare for the coming times.

On Tuesday, January 19th, at 8:30 AM I will be discussing these issues and more on Maine Talk Radio. You can click onto this player and join in, or call the show at (646) 716-5423. Hope to see you there, and if you’d like to add to the discussion, make sure you press the number 1 on your keypad so I’ll know you wish to speak.

Listen to D.l.soucy on Blog Talk Radio


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