The Disaster Myth Narrative: No One Panics, No One Loots, No One Goes Hungry
By Daisy Luther
“The most effective way to destroy people is to deny and obliterate their own understanding of their history.” ~ George Orwell
A few years back, I was doing some research about the aftermath of some natural disasters that took place here in America. I was shocked to find that the articles I was looking for – ones that I had read in the past – were pretty hard to find, but articles refuting the sought-for pieces were rampant. Not just one event, but every single crisis aftermath that I looked up, had articles that were written after the fact stating in no uncertain terms that the hunger, chaos, and unrest never happened.
Apparently we, the preparedness community, are all wrong when it comes to the belief that after a disaster, chaos erupts and civic disorder is the rule of the day. That is only a disaster myth, and the public narrative belies it all.
Listen to the “experts” and they will confirm, it never happens.
Panic? What panic?
According to newspaper articles written after Superstorm Sandy devastated the East Coast and after Hurricane Katrina caused countless billions in damage in New Orleans, people were calm, benevolent and peaceful. Heck, they were all standing around singing Kumbayah around a campfire, sharing their canned goods, calming frightened puppies, and helping the elderly.
Apparently, studies prove that the fear of anarchy, lawlessness, and chaos is nothing but the “disaster myth”. Reams of examples exist of the goodness and warmth of society as a whole after disaster strikes. All the stories you read at the time were just that – stories, according to the mainstream media:
Yet there are a few examples stubbornly fixed in the popular imagination of people reacting to a natural disaster by becoming primal and vicious. Remember the gangs “marauding” through New Orleans, raping and even cannibalizing people in the Super-Dome after Hurricane Katrina? It turns out they didn’t exist. Years of journalistic investigations showed them to be racist fantasies. They didn’t happen. Yes, there was some “looting” — which consisted of starving people breaking into closed and abandoned shops for food. Of course human beings can behave atrociously – but the aftermath of a disaster seems to be the time when it is least likely. (source)
Looting? Only hungry people getting food from unmanned stores. Who wouldn’t do that?
Beatings and assaults? Didn’t happen. Disturbed people made these stories up for attention.
Gang rapes? No way. You watch too much Law and Order: SVU.
Murder, mayhem, and gangs of youth on the streets? Silly readers – we just made that up.
The Disaster Myth is a narrative created by the establishment and delivered by their stoolies in the mainstream media. The Disaster Myth points fingers at many of the things that are commonly believed to be true by the preparedness community. Included in this narrative:
- People do not panic after a disaster – instead, they pull together.
- The official government response is always speedy and appropriate – unless you are a person of color, in which case you will be denied assistance based on your race, because racism is the current agenda
- You will be taken care of if you simply comply peacefully with authorities.
- There is little increase in post-disaster crime.
These statements all stand in direct opposition to the stories we hear from news sources during the crisis. We heard terrible stories from eyewitnesses who suffered from hunger, thirst, and unsanitary condition in the Superdome after Katrina. We heard about citizens being robbed of their 2nd Amendment rights by police after the crisis, and we heard about gang rapes, looting, and mayhem. Fast forward to Sandy where people were defecating in the hallways of their high rise apartments and digging through garbage to find food just a few days after the storm. As for the official response, who can forget the FEMA shelter that closed because of inclement weather? Of course, the weather was inclement – it was a freaking weather-related disaster!
Mac Slavo of SHTFplan wrote of the unrest, discomfort, and mayhem after Superstorm Sandy ransacked the East Coast:
For tens of thousands of east coast residents that worst case scenario is now playing out in real-time. No longer are images of starving people waiting for government handouts restricted to just the third-world.
In the midst of crisis, once civilized societies will very rapidly descend into chaos when essential infrastructure systems collapse.
Though the National Guard was deployed before the storm even hit, there is simply no way for the government to coordinate a response requiring millions of servings of food, water and medical supplies
Many east coast residents who failed to evacuate or prepare reserve supplies ahead of the storm are being forced to fend for themselves.
Frustration and anger have taken hold, as residents have no means of acquiring food or gas and thousands of trucks across the region remain stuck in limbo.
Limited electricity has made it possible for some to share their experiences:
- I was in chaos tonite tryin to get groceries…lines for shuttle buses, only to get to the no food left & closing early (link)
- I’m not sure what has shocked me more, all the communities around me destroyed, or the 5 hour lines for gas and food. (link)
- Haven’t slept or ate well in a few days. Hope things start getting better around here soon (link)
- These days a lot of people are impatient because they’re used to fast things. Fast food, fast internet, fast lines and fast shipping etc. (link)
- Glad Obama is off to Vegas after his 90 minute visit. Gas lines are miles long.. Running out of food and water. Great Job (link)
- Went to the Grocery store and lines were crazy but nail salon was empty so I’ve got a new gel manicure and some Korean junk food (link)
- So f*cking devastated right now. Smell burning houses. People fighting for food. Pitch darkness. I may spend the night in rockaway to help (link)
At the time of the event, even the mainstream reported on the affluent East Side residents dumpster diving in search of food. Was this NBC report, complete with video, a work of salacious fiction?
As far as civil unrest is concerned, the Twittersphere was jammed with people planning looting sprees in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy. Those who were already of criminal leanings saw the disaster as a great opportunity. In the great North American Edit, however, these tweets are said to be part of the myth – apparently, they were just kids playing around. Some reports pooh-poohed the very idea that looters had run amok.
This article from Prison Planet refutes all of the refuting and says that the civil unrest DID occur and that it generally does, given evidence from past events.
Legends from the past? Every single extreme weather event in recent years in the United States has been followed by looting.
As MSNBC reported at the time, looting during Hurricane Katrina was so prevalent that it “took place in full view of police and National Guard troops.”
Residents described the scenes as being like “downtown Baghdad” as looters filled garbage cans full of stolen goods and floated them down flooded streets.
Looters also targeted victims of the Colorado wildfires earlier this year.
Does this sound familiar?
This revision of inconvenient history will sound quite familiar to anyone who has read George Orwell’s masterpiece 1984 (which was not meant to be an instruction manual, by the way.) In the novel, the main character, Winston Smith, worked for the Ministry of Truth, which was actually a department of propaganda whose job it was to rewrite any faction of history that did not make the government look omniscient.
In George Orwell’s novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, the Ministry of Truth is Oceania’s propaganda ministry. It is responsible for any necessary falsification of historical events. The word truth in the title Ministry of Truth should warn, by definition, that the “minister” will self-serve its own “truth”; the title implies the willful fooling of posterity using “historical” archives to show “in fact” what “really” happened. As well as administering truth, the ministry spreads a new language amongst the populace called Newspeak, in which, for example, truth is understood to mean statements like 2 + 2 = 5 when the situation warrants.
The Ministry of Truth is involved with news media, entertainment, the fine arts and educational books. Its purpose is to rewrite history to change the facts to fit Party doctrine for propaganda effect. For example, if Big Brother makes a prediction that turns out to be wrong, the employees of the Ministry of Truth go back and rewrite the prediction so that any prediction Big Brother previously made is accurate. This is the “how” of the Ministry of Truth’s existence. Within the novel, Orwell elaborates that the deeper reason for its existence is to maintain the illusion that the Party is absolute. It cannot ever seem to change its mind (if, for instance, they perform one of their constant changes regarding enemies during war) or make a mistake (firing an official or making a grossly misjudged supply prediction), for that would imply weakness and to maintain power the Party must seem eternally right and strong. (source)
We are watching narratives being created in front of our very eyes with the Vegas massacre. Every time something terrible happens, there’s a spin and that spin a) keeps us in the dark. b) encourages us to be dependent, and c) benefits someone.
So why the vast effort to expunge tales of mayhem and to make it seem like our own national disasters really weren’t that bad? There are a few reasons, like pandering to an audience that wants to be blissfully unaware, but primarily, it’s about control.
Those who live a self-sufficient lifestyle are a threat to the status quo that those in power would like to see. If you don’t NEED them, then there is no leverage to force you into compliance. You don’t NEED to go to Camp FEMA in order to have 3 squares a day. You don’t NEED to give up your guns in order to have a roof over your head and government supplied security. You don’t NEED to get some kind of chip implanted in your arm to be scanned in order to receive “benefits” like medical care, food, and even money.
Self-sufficiency means freedom. When you can feed yourself, clothe yourself, shelter yourself, and protect yourself, you are far less likely to need to cede your freedoms in order to stay alive. And in a police state that is frantically trying to withdraw our constitutional rights, this just won’t do. They need leverage.
So the establishment has created a narrative that tells us what we are doing is silly and unnecessary. They are rewriting history even though we only lived that history in the past decade. Even though we know the truth of the matter because we watched it live, they are changing the facts to make us doubt our own perceptions. They are catering to the people who have no interest whatsoever in taking care of themselves.
This narrative was created to make a society of anti-preppers – of people who believe that all will be right with the world, the government is kind and benevolent, potential disasters aren’t really that big of a deal, and those crazy preppers are stark raving lunatics. They want us to be perceived as extremists so that others are less likely to follow our examples. If they need a crazy bad guy at whom to point the finger, all they have to do is call someone a “Doomsday Prepper”. (Remember how poor Nancy Lanza was vilified after the Sandy Hook shooting?)
If this civil unrest is not occurring, why is the National Guard called to keep the peace? Why are state police riding around on tanks wearing body armor? Why were the guns of law-abiding citizens taken away in the aftermath of Katrina?
Which version of reality are you going to believe? The one that you actually witnessed or the perverted rewrite that the mainstream media is trying to push upon you?
Remember the things happening right now.
We have recently been hit with disaster after disaster in the United States. The aftermath of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma hit the mainland amidst stories of looters and people standing armed to protect homes and businesses. In the Carribean, lawlessness was rampant, and after Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, the danger from armed people robbing those who still had some supplies was constant. As I write this, there are uncontrolled wildfires tearing through California wine country, and looters are striking the homes of evacuees.
Of course, we are seeing reports of this now, but later will these stories be “debunked” by “experts” like the stories from Katrina and Sandy?
It’s entirely likely because most people would prefer to live smug in the belief that the police are only seconds away, their neighborhoods are immune to looters and vandals, and that America is a place of exceptional order and civilization. It comforts them to believe these things. They use it as ammunition so they can scoff at “doomsday” preppers and call them “conspiracy theorists.”
But we know differently, and today, bloggers and alternative media are also documenting these stories before history is erased. I have watched for years as supplemental links in stories I have written have disappeared. I have witnessed the changing narratives, and if you’re reading this, you probably have too.
So, don’t be discouraged in your efforts when you read all the “good news” stories that inevitably show up after a disaster. To be sure, there are some wonderful people out there helping their neighbors, but there is also a dark side that the media prefers to ignore.
You saw it when it was happening. You know the truth, even if the disaster myth narrative would have you believe otherwise.
A sampling of articles and studies supporting the Disaster Myth Narrative:
About the Author
Daisy Luther is a coffee-swigging, gun-toting blogger who writes about current events, preparedness, frugality, voluntaryism, and the pursuit of liberty on her website, The Organic Prepper. She is widely republished across alternative media and she curates all the most important news links on her aggregate site, PreppersDailyNews.com. Daisy is the best-selling author of 4 books and lives in the mountains of Virginia with her two daughters and an ever-growing menagerie. You can find her on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter.