it-cant-happen-here

Here is a short quiz for you. Ready?

•What’s the current situation with Lindsay Lohan’s rehab?
•Who won the latest “Dancing With the Stars”?
•Name five celebrities with “baby bumps.”
•Explain how the Cypriot banking crisis could impact the European economy.
If you answered the first three questions but are clueless on the fourth,
you’re in good company. Estimates are that up to half the population in
America is ignorant about the situation in Cyprus. Oh sure, they hear
snippets on the evening news, but since it’s far away and happening to
other people, they don’t worry about it.

These people are suffering from a Normalcy
Bias.

Just what is a Normalcy Bias? Wikipedia defines it as a mental state that
“causes people to underestimate both the possibility of a disaster
occurring and its possible effects.” It’s sometimes called the “It
can’t happen here” syndrome. The assumption is that since a particular
disaster has never occurred before, it never will. Any disturbing indications
that something bad may happen are dismissed or trivialized.

Originally, the Normalcy Bias referred solely to natural disasters. The scale
of devastation and societal disruption from Hurricane Katrina can be
attributed in part to a Normalcy Bias – the refusal of the people of New
Orleans to believe their beloved city could ever receive a direct hit from a
major hurricane, despite its physical vulnerabilities. I distinctly remember
seeing a live news report from New Orleans on the evening of Aug. 28, 2005,
that showed people partying in the street with a (then) Category 4 hurricane
hours away from landfall. Disaster? Nah. It can’t happen here. Gimme
another beer.

But the Normalcy Bias has been extended to include political and social
disasters as well. The most extreme example is Jews (and to an extent, some
Germans) during the reign of the Nazis. Despite all the warning signs, many
people remained in denial. Concentration camps? Genocide? Nah. Too crazy. It
can’t happen here.

When we hear the mainstream media assuring us in soothing, condescending
tones that we’re in an economic “recovery” – despite all evidence to
the contrary – we want desperately to believe them. We don’t want
anything to disrupt our ordinary, comfortable lives. We genuinely believe
that if we cling to our normal way of life and habitual methods of doing
things – despite overwhelming proof that something dangerous is looming –
then everything will be OK. It can’t happen here.

But the situation in Cyprus is potentially international in scope. North
Korea is doing some serious saber-rattling. America’s debt is so out of
control that an economic crash is a statistical certainty. Sweeping anti-gun
legislation is being enacted in various states even as we speak. As Ayn Rand
so memorably put it, “You can ignore reality, but you can’t ignore the
consequences of ignoring reality.”

Right now life is still pretty good in America. Grocery stores are
well-stocked, restaurants are busy, movie theaters are full. Some people know
that perhaps they should think about putting some of their retirement savings
into tangibles or buying up some ammo, but what’s the hurry? The government
won’t seize our assets or take away the Second Amendment. It can’t happen
here.

But underneath our feet there is a low-grade ominous rumbling, something
perceptive people detected many years ago. All is NOT right in America and in
many other places in the world. Something bad IS heading our way. People need
to prepare – physically, financially and spiritually.

Canada Free Press (which is not afraid to print in-your-face stuff about
America) published a fascinating article on how the U.S. government has an
agenda to kill the dollar. “The ultimate objective is to implement an
international currency in tandem with a system of global governance,”
writes Doug Hagmann. “The problem is that most people are not thinking
large enough, nor do they understand the magnitude of the lie. They are not
seeing the larger picture as their focus is diverted elsewhere. For example,
they focus on various tentacles of the octopus such as the gun confiscation
initiative, the DHS armament acquisitions and economic woes as independent
and unrelated events. They are not. … Many will die from what is coming.
The level of evil behind this plan is incomprehensible to the normal human
mind.”

See? Normalcy Bias. People continue to cling to the notion that our leaders
are working for us, not for themselves. So people sit on their butts watching
“American Idol” or reading about celebrity baby bumps. Can the U.S.
economy crash? Nah. It can’t happen here.

There are many people who just can’t “see” anything wrong with our
country. Any restrictions to our constitutional freedoms and liberties are
justified as “necessary” to ensure domestic tranquility. When the TSA
performs atrocities on children, the elderly, or the disabled, they are
excused as simply being overzealous for our security. When the federal
government buys billions of rounds of hollow-point ammunition or mandates
another offensive policy for kindergartners or places drones in American
skies, we close our eyes and pretend it’s all for the common good. And for
those who claim deep dark conspiracy theories? Take off your tin foil hats.
It could never happen here. Everything’s fine.

And when something big and bad does happen, these people will be surprised.
What will they say if savings accounts or pensions are confiscated (Hungary,
Argentina, Cyprus)? If door-to-door gun seizures occur (England, Australia)?
If dissident camps aren’t rumors after all (Cambodia, China, Russia)? Where
did this come from?

“Denial is an integral part of atrocity,” wrote the late Iris Chang,
“and it’s a natural part after a society has committed genocide. First
you kill, and then the memory of killing is killed.”

The fact is, very little happens that doesn’t give some sort of advanced
warning. All it takes is vigilance and a determination not to depend wholly
on the mainstream media, which tends to filter world and national events to
support their agenda.

So what can be done about all these dire things? Well, the first thing to do
is strip away your Normalcy Bias and acknowledge that the smoke on the
horizon means a fire is coming. Awareness, as they say, is half the battle.

And then prepare yourself physically, financially and spiritually. Learn how
to safeguard your home and family; learn how to safeguard your money; and
learn how to safeguard your soul.

But most of you won’t. You’ll have endless excuses why it’s not
necessary, at least not yet. You’ll remain in denial. You won’t do
anything.

Shrug. I tried.