The opposite of pondering :the blame game
(The following assumes a standard post-SHTF where all parties are working toward rebuilding and not deliberately creating chaos for it to happen. That's an entirely different scenario that I'll discuss later)
When things turn bad, the first inclination is denial that something bad is occurring. When it's evident that it is in fact transpiring, in order to cope we look for simplistic answers. As anyone who's a student of history knows, it aint that simple. Life is remarkably complex for a single person or a community, but truly live in a sea of communities, little islands that we pretend don't exist, through smugness, or being obtuse, or lack of wisdom, or discernment. We're very isolated by what's going on personally. We become busy by our responsibilities and any minor entertainments to take away our daily concerns.
Others are thinking about themselves and by what's affecting out community, and note that outside forces are acting on it, and find ways to make it survive and thrive. When that fails then the easiest answer is that it's someone else's fault or that it's another group's fault.
Today, we like to blame the President. If that's not enough, we blame Congress. Maybe we blame the Republicans or the Democrats. I know, it's the Tea Party, no...it's the Unions or the OWS. Maybe it's White Oppression, no...it's a lack of initiative by Black people. No it's the Muslims...or maybe the Catholics. Hey maybe it's the Gays....and on and on. Maybe it's Aliens!
There are no easy answers why the SHTF. It's a combination of many tiny events and bad decisions and selfish decisions and weather and optimism and being afraid and agriculture and technology. It's never just one group, and anyone seeking to blame their misfortune on another group is not thinking clearly.
Each group, based upon their power or lack of it, affects change. The summation of that results in the change that affects you and your community. And believe it or not, the Source is always affecting change too. Shhhh...here's a secret...the Source is working on your behalf whether you believe it or not.
There is no doubt that certain very elite people because of their wealth have amassed enormous power. More about that later. But for now bear with me while we consider 99% of groups.
Divisiveness and choosing to support one group over another will most likely be based on poor analysis. That divisiveness will break down the little communities that allow our economic life to work. If the divisiveness breaks down even further and degenerates into violence, then very little work can be done while people battle each other. How many crops can be grown if there is constant threats of stealing? How many varieties of trade goods can there be if each community is attempting to grow the same plants or raise the same animals? We can only eat so much, and store so much realistically. This means each community needs trade in order to purchase the other things which can't be found in that region.
The blame game hurts our community. When the SHTF, it is a poor adaptation that will reallocate needed supplies and manpower to areas that don't produce anything but more violence.
You've heard me talk about self-segregation, but also about being tolerant. People should be tolerant of the differences of each other, and willing to accept differences within communities, but if there are lots of people that have different ideas than the majority of people, people must renegotiate that conflict so that the community thrives. Divisiveness doesn't offer good survivability intra-community either. If I like to drink ethanol, and I can produce it, but I live in a community of people who shun it due to spiritual beliefs, then while there may be a good source of surreptitious income from it for me, it's not in the communities best interest to let me stay, nor is it in my best interest to stay. This is partly why bootleggers stay on the periphery.
If I am a minority (and truthfully all people are) and can simply be a community member and not viewed as a minority, then people will tolerate me if I produce goods and services that benefit it. In a SHTF scenario, trying to stay in a community that is already suspicious of me, and that barely tolerates me when things are normal, and I don't have a way to produce goods and services, then I better get out of Dodge. It is foolish for me to stay. When the SHTF, most people have poor coping skills, and are not at their best, and will make poor analysis, and make snap decisions. If I'm caring for my wife and children, and allowing them to stay in a hostile environment, then I'm the one exhibiting a lack of common sense. You can rail against injustice, I often do, but mostly that bores people or simply is beating your head against a brick wall.
Because people are different, many tribes of various composition will develop based upon their values. When many city people bug out, then it will be very important as a community member and leader to shape the community to be tolerant to gather the best people to provide goods and services, but also to be honest about expectations.
The Latter Day Saints community are very prepared, with a command structure, and strong ethics, and usually a deep commitment to their families, but I don't share their belief system. I probably would have difficult living in one, more from my beliefs than them accepting me. I admire them, I find many of their men honorable, and their women refreshingly sweet and lovely. When they tried to move to find a community in decades past, they found many places with odd ideas about their beliefs and a severe lack of tolerance. Terrible violence occurred when they tried to live in certain villages. It would be far safer and wiser to found communities of LDS folks then to try to live as present day pluralistic societies. It is unrealistic post-SHTF to have them.
Diversity is the ideal. The most diversity can offer the most diverse skills. For genetic reasons, that diversity is usually a way of creating stronger children. But science and social engineering are not practical in a post-SHTF scenario until great strides are made in security. For example, many native peoples have actively recruited wives and husbands from surrounding communities because they inherently understood the power of genetics without ever understanding genetics. Many times that influx of culture brought new agriculture methods, customs, art, tool making, hunting, etc.
If you study the history of America, many tiny villages began based upon a collection of immigrants moving to an area and banding together since the trust level was higher. These most likely are villages a stone's throw from another village. Because people self-segregate, people relax more, and once things stabilize and calm down, then collaboration naturally happens from resources, specialization, and great trade items. Pretty girls and handsome boys will also facilitate the social exchange. Children always break down barriers. Neighbors will often cross the small distances that almost touch on the borders of little communities. These allow opportunities for people to visit, share their tools and experiences, eat together, and see, “Hmm they are pretty much the same as me.”
The people having the most difficult time finding a community are Gay folks. Because they don't have children and who in turn are gay, they have to find tolerant communities who aren't nosy and waste time by scrutinizing their sexual practices. Instead they find communities who value people based upon their community involvement. I can foresee cooperative, very tolerant communities evolving. All societies have some level of Gay culture, it's just not talked about that much in history (well...that is studied by most people). Gay folks operated in Pioneer cultures very quietly at times, and far more tolerance happened in the West due to isolation. Some people just chose to live together, and no one knew the real extent of their relationship.
Just because society has evolved one way, don't expect it to stay the same. Far more radical social arrangements could evolve by necessity post-SHTF. If there are limitation on the number of men or women, and in order to produce a number of children to perpetuate growth, various groups in history have adapted social arrangements based on what the community over time felt was normal. This alone could make people relocate to another community. For example, if you take even the most rudimentary Anthropology class, you'll no doubt study the four genders of some Native American tribes. That's a radical idea for some people, even a shocking one. To me, it would only be shocking if I was forced to live there and to force me to live in a certain way. Since no one is forcing you to live anywhere, this means voting with your feet and moving to a community that reflects your personal lifestyle and ethos and core beliefs.
I love to meet people with incredibly diverse beliefs and cultures. That doesn't mean I'd like to live there. Well...maybe if the women are Latinas. Being tolerant but knowing how most people have acted
throughout history will give you some tools for rebuilding community and dealing with a community post-SHTF.