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Fallout (2024): Societal Experiments & a Plan for the End of the World






a person wearing a vault dweller outfit with a dog walks through the wasteland from the video game Fallout.
Fallout Promo Image

Fallout is an ambitious, gore-filled, comedic adaptation of the popular post-apocalyptic video game franchise. What Fallout and our world have in common is endless human suffering, a hatred for communism, manipulative and controlling governments, and war, which never changes. Gabe compares the two worlds and histories. And they dive into all the horrifying experiments of VaultTec. Kat tells us what to do in the event of a nuclear war, where is the safest place to be during a nuclear attack, and if the rich are already building VaultTec-like bunkers in anticipation of a coming war.


Sources in this Episode:

Mira Safety, Your Nuclear Attack Map for 2023


Film Reviews & Other Reading:


 

Media from this week's episode:

Fallout (2024)

In a future, post-apocalyptic Los Angeles brought about by nuclear decimation, citizens must live in underground bunkers to protect themselves from radiation, mutants and bandits.

 


Fallout: Wasteland Lore and the Horrors of the Vaults

by gabe castro


RED: Quotes, someone else's words.


Summary

Fallout is an ambitious, gore-filled, comedic adaptation of the popular post-apocalyptic video game franchise developed by Bethesda Game Studios. The show perfectly encapsulates the grungy, morality-free wasteland and the if-you-don’t-laugh-you’ll-cry storylines of the games that taught us that war, war never changes. Set in a retro-futuristic world where nuclear war has devastated civilization, the series follows the struggles of three, very different people as they navigate the harsh wasteland of the former United States.


The show is overrun with nods to the games and features delightful easter eggs, it answers many questions gamers encountered. The overall story of the games features a vault dweller, someone who was born in the Vaults designed to save the human race in the event of a nuclear war (which occurred many years in the past) who is tasked with leaving their subterranean home to venture into the wasteland where they encounter ghouls (radiated humans), mutants (even worse radiated humans), radiated disgusting creatures (like radroaches - which are very not rad), raiders, radiated water, environmental storytelling skeletons, and cannibals. The vaults were created by one of the many evil corporations in this world, Vault Tec. 


The show’s protagonists include a cheerful, vault dweller named Lucy who’s left the comfort of her vault to find her father after he was abducted by a group of raiders; Maximus, a member of the Brotherhood of Steel, a paladin-esque military group that wants to control the wasteland for reasons they believe to be good (but are not); and finally, the Ghoul, formerly a man named Cooper from pre-war times who has been alive since the bombs dropped due to radiation poisoning and a regular dose of a strong concoction of drugs. 

Throughout the series, the protagonist must make difficult choices that shape the fate of the wasteland and its inhabitants. These choices often involve moral ambiguity, forcing the protagonist to weigh their own values against the greater good.  Fallout combines elements of science fiction, horror, and political intrigue to create a compelling and immersive narrative. With its rich lore, complex characters, and morally gray dilemmas, it offers viewers a thought-provoking exploration of what it means to survive in a world teetering on the brink of oblivion.


Crawl out Through the Fallout, baby

The world of Fallout is an eerie near-future that blends futuristic tech with the charm of the 1940/50’s aesthetic. The Fallout world resembles the imaginings of scifi creators like Ray Bradbury or the 50s future aspirational future known as the World of Tomorrow. In this world, the people of our past predicted science fiction inspired technology like house cleaning robots and super intelligent computers, water purifying chips and convenient inventions to make the life of a regular housewife one of ease. According to the very helpful wiki page for Fallout, this difference in envisioned futures stems from a decision to focus on different technologies at a pivotal time in the US, “Instead of working to develop miniaturized electronics and "green" technologies, post-World War II humanity in the Fallout universe invested its technological efforts in massive supercomputers (e.g., ZAX supercomputers), further harnessing the atom, inventing compact nuclear fusion power generators and an enhanced and miniaturized form of nuclear fission, as well as more advanced robotics, cybernetics, and genetic engineering than we currently possess in our universe. This meant that things like power armor and laser weaponry could be built, as well as a large number of housekeeping robots used by many Americans before the Great War. Many such power sources continue to function hundreds of years after their construction. “


The Fallout world is a what if of drastic proportions, wondering at the state of our world if we hadn’t adapted to different technologies or ways of thinking. The fear of communism, at its loudest and most notably dangerous during the red scare is still rampant in 2077 before the bombs drop. Radio is the most common form of entertainment instead of the TV. Food products mirror the popularized TV-dinner era (boxed macaroni and cheese, canned meat, Salisbury Steak TV dinners, etc.). The wiki also explains that, “Contemporary 2070s singers like Vera Keyes and Dean Domino would get their start recording on holotapes rather than vinyl records, and their music, as well as posters for other pre-War acts like Danny Parker and Paul Clooney suggest that genres associated with the 1950s in our timeline either remained popular up until the War, or had experienced a resurgence in the preceding years. “


Further, the world has been described by creators, Jonathan Nolan and Walton Goggins, in interviews for the 2024 Fallout TV series, as “a world where America did not experience the Vietnam War, the Watergate scandal, or the Woodstock-type counterculture of the 1960s, and "never had a conversation with itself about its own sins and transgressions." Instead, they describe it as one where America stayed in its Eisenhower era of "swagger" until coming to an end with the Great War of 2077.”


Thanks to an article on Gamer Rant,  called Fallout's Alternate History: The Biggest Differences From Ours, I found some of the other key historic moments that differ between our world and Fallout’s. Including a samurai (from the 1600s) who can become a companion is found on an alien spaceship called Mothership Zeta. In the world of Fallout, aliens have made physical contact with humans several times. Different people landed on the moon and on a different date, meaning the US made it to space first, not the USSR. China replaced the Soviet Union as the “opponent” of the US. 


In the world of the Fallout universe, the Cold War never happened. The war was anything but cold, with nuclear bombs dropping within moments.  A big reason why China became such a massive powerhouse was because of its economic reforms to enable a free market. This, coupled with its dedicated resources, has led to this country being one of the most influential in the entire world. However, around the same time, China in the Fallout universe never even proposed these radical economic reforms. It seems the threat of war was so omnipresent all the time that people just had different things to worry about.


The Soviet Union dissolved in 1991 instead of becoming Russia and the many other countries that made up the union. In the Fallout universe, the Soviet Union existed well into the 21st century. The country even launched a few nukes during the Great War.


One of the biggest changes is that the US was split into 13 Commonweaths instead of states. Overall, there’s no one pivotal change as the differences are sprinkled throughout to offer a strange Mandela Effect world where Bonnie and Clyde were Viki and Vance, the Washington Post is called the Capital Post, we have Vim! Soda and more, their obsession with tube technology notwithstanding. 

 

What I have found the most interesting about the Fallout world are the vaults. Vault Tec designed these vaults to experiment with the human population. You learn this through playing the games and it is revealed at the end of the show how such a program could be created and guaranteed. So let’s talk about the different vaults known in the Fallout universe and the experiments associated with them. (not all of them because some are boring).


  • Vault 3: A control vault found in Fallout: New Vegas where the inhabitants chose to remain in isolation for over a century until a water leak forced them to open for trade; Vault was subsequently massacred and taken over by the Fiends.

  • Vault 4: is a well-known experimental vault featured in the Fallout tv show. Scientists adopted a policy of letting in survivors to use as genetic experimentation test subjects; subjects broke free and killed the scientists, but continue to inhabit the Vault and accept outsiders, acting as a true refuge from the wastes

  • Vault 11: Social experiment vault found in Fallout: New Vegas. Vault 11's inhabitants were instructed to select one of their own as a human sacrifice each year, this person would be the overseer for the year. They were told that the vault would shut off its life support systems, and the entire population would die if the sacrifice was not made. In reality, should the vault's residents refuse to sacrifice someone, the vault would provide an automated message congratulating them as "a shining example of humanity." By the time they couldn't bear to sacrifice anyone else and bravely refused, its population had been whittled down to a mere five people. Unable to cope with their guilt after this brutal realization, four of those five people elected to commit suicide.

  • Vault 12: A faulty vaulty with a door that was designed to not seal properly resulting in the inhabitants becoming ghouls who later founded the city of Necropolis. Featured in Fallout and Fallout 2. 

  • Vault 13: Famous for being a homebase vault for your character in Fallout and Fallout 2. This control vault was a wonderful place to live until their water chip broke and our vault dweller hero had to venture into the wasteland to repair it. 

  • Vault 15: Social experiment with inhabitants from diverse ethnic and religious backgrounds living together; Vault's opening was intentionally delayed by several decades

  • Vault 19: Social experiment studying effects of factionalism and means to induce paranoia and mistrust; inhabitants divided into rival "Blue" and "Red" sectors. Inhabitants subjected to subliminal messaging and faked acts of sabotage; many developed symptoms of psychosis. The ultimate fate of inhabitants is unknown. Found in Fallout: New Vegas.

  • Vault 21: Social experiment studying the effects of excessive gambling; all disputes were to be resolved through games of chance. Inhabitants maintained a stable community until 2274, when Robert House successfully won ownership of the Vault in a game of blackjack and converted it into a hotel. Guess which game this was in?

  • Vault 22: Research facility studying and creating genetically modified crops and flora which resulted in modified fungal infections which transformed inhabitants into spore carriers AKA Last of Us. Fallout: New Vegas, bb.

  • Vault 27: Referenced in the Fallout TV show when a representative from evil org Big MT suggests a vault that’s purposefully overcrowded to force residents to compete for survival. It was purposefully overcrowded by two times its maximum capacity.

  • Vault 29: Separated children under 15 from their parents splitting families up. In the Fallout Bible. 

  • Vaults 31, 32, and 33: SPOILERS Social experiment, consisting of three interconnected but divided Vaults, ostensibly as extra security from threats but also for support during crises; secretly a pet project of Bud Askins, a Vault-Tec sales executive who sought to use the Vaults to create a population of loyal Vault-Tec employees to monopolize the wasteland. Vaults 32 and 33 housed regular populations, while 31 housed cryogenically preserved Vault-Tec executives directed to go out to the other Vaults and indoctrinate them towards Askins' directive, with the truth hidden from the other two Vaults. Vault 32  found out the truth about Vault 31, revolted, and ultimately died from infighting, suicide, and/or starvation circa 2294; briefly taken over by Lee Moldaver's raiders in order to infiltrate Vault 33, and later resettled by dwellers from Vault 33 in 2297 on Bud Askins' orders.  Fallout TV Show. 

  • Vault 34: Social experiment in which inhabitants were provided access to an overstocked armory with no security measures. However, the Inhabitants manually installed locks on armory and restricted access to Vault Security. Fallout: New Vegas.

  • Vault 51: Referenced in the Fallout show where evil org REPCONN wants to have a vault governed by a robot. Social experiment in which a ZAX AI was tasked with selecting an ideal overseer from the Vault population. After one of the residents mentioned to ZAX that they would only be able to tell if someone was ideal was in times of crises which would reveal their true potential, ZAX began manufacturing crises to test the abilities of inhabitants; the crises eventually escalated to lethal threats, then direct manipulation encouraging the remaining inhabitants to kill one another.

  • Vault 57: Vault 57's experiment was to see how a Vault's population of non-drug addicts would react to addictive materials in their food and water. They specifically gave a large supply of meat for a Redmond Special Food Shack, that was laced with Columbian Argument Powder. There were smaller amounts of it in Drinks and Food but mostly in the popular foods.

  • Vault 68: a social experiment where it was inhabited by 999 men and one woman. You can imagine how this went. I choose the bear. Mentioned in the webcomic, One Man and a Crate of Puppets. 

  • Vault 69: Death by SnuSnu experiment with 999 women and one man. 

  • Vault 75: Mentioned in the TV show was a vault designed to train and educate children. Upon entry, the students' parents were separated from their children and were summarily executed by the security staff under the pretense that they were undergoing "orientation." The children were then subjected to rigorous physical and mental conditioning. Those that did not achieve satisfactory results were disposed of once they reached the age of eighteen, and those that did were "harvested" for their superior genes. Fallout 4.

  • Vault 77: Was sealed with only one person inside. This individual, later referred to as "Puppet Man," initially believed that this was a mistake and pleaded for the "other fucking people" to be let in. With his pleas unheard and unanswered, the years of solitude that followed took a toll on his mental condition. Puppet Man later found a crate of hand puppets and immediately began playing with them. He quickly lost himself in his puppet games, and he started to believe that the Vault Boy puppet was talking to him. That night, he tore apart the king puppet and then accused the Vault Boy puppet of the murder. The Vault Boy puppet responded that it was actually Puppet Man himself who "murdered" the king puppet, prompting the two to escape in fear for what the dog puppet might do. It was featured in a promotional, crossover comic strip entitled One Man, and a Crate of Puppets, released to promote Fallout 3

  • Vault 81: Research facility; scientists in a secret sector of the Vault would work to develop a universal disease cure via experiments on an unwitting civilian population. Fallout 4.

  • Vault 87: Mentioned in the Fallout TV show when evil org West-Tek shares plans for a vault that works to create “a super mutant soldier.” Residents Served As Test Subjects For The FEV. Fallout 3.

  • Vault 92: Is a bit like They Cloned Tyrone. Filled with skilled musicians to preserve musical culture and talent after the war. In reality, it was all a "white noise" experiment that drove the dwellers insane and eventually, they killed one another. Found in Fallout 3. 

  • Vault 94: Social experiment testing the viability of pacifist belief systems in post-apocalyptic conditions; all inhabitants were members of a nonviolent religious community save a single Vault-Tec employee. The Vault-Tec observer confessed to the experiment and urged inhabitants to arm themselves for safety. Fallout 76.

  • Vault 95: Social and medical experiment in which addicts were given experimental rehabilitation treatments and encouraged to remain clean, then informed of a secret stash of chems. At first, they recovered but quickly turned violent when the stash was revealed.  Fallout 4

  • Vault 96: Research facility intended to monitor and study mutated wildlife, using genetic engineering to develop anti-mutant countermeasures. Staffed by only five individuals. Automated security measures threatened to execute inhabitants if they failed to meet quotas due to secretive and unethical nature of research. Inhabitants eventually attempted to sabotage security systems and escape, but failed and were killed. Test subjects eventually began to escape the facility. Fallout 76

  • Vault 101: The primary experiment of the vault was to test the long-term effects of an all-powerful overseer on its inhabitants, and "long-term" meant "forever." As it turns out, Vault 101 was never supposed to open for any reason or at any time. This is where you start in Fallout 3

  • Vault 106: Medical experiment studying effects of psychoactive drugs released via air filtration systems a mere ten days after the door was sealed shut. Mentioned in the TV show and Fallout 3. 

  • Vault 108: Had several experiments at once. Social experiment studying effects of leadership conflicts: most management positions were to be filled by a terminally ill Overseer upon entry, power systems were designed to fail after 20 years, no entertainment was provided, and armory was provided triple the standard ordnance In addition to the stated purpose, Vault was also provided with a cloning device. A single inhabitant, Gary, was cloned repeatedly; clones eventually turned violent and overran the Vault. Fallout 3

  • Vault 111: Medical experiment studying long-term effects of cryogenic stasis on unwitting subjects. This is where your character begins in Fallout 4 and your son Shaun is stolen. 

  • Vault 112: Social experiment in which inhabitants were placed in a virtual reality simulation controlled by the Overseer. The overseer, Stanislau Braun used this for evil and fed the inhabitants nightmares where he operated as a young girl who would murder them only for them to wake up and relive it. Fallout 4.

  • Vault 118: Social experiment in which 10 wealthy residents would live in luxury while 300 impoverished residents lived in squalor, with wealthy residents granted total authority. "Lower class" section of the Vault was never completed due to embezzlement of construction funds. Inhabitants of the "luxury" section eventually transferred themselves into robobrains to achieve immortality, and continue to occupy the Vault. Fallout 4.

  • NOT a vault but one of my favorite Environmental Storytelling Skeleton moments is a reference to one of my favorite Ray Bradbury stories, There Will Come Soft Rain, in which a domestic robot, having survived a nuclear holocaust, continues its daily routines in a dark, empty house. The robot in the short story reads the same poem to a similarly empty house as it was programmed to do. In Bradbury’s story, there is a family in the house who has the robot read to them as they sit around the fire. They also have cool mouse robots that clean their house. Eventually, something terrible happens, most likely a nuclear bomb that wipes them out, but the robot keeps on trucking. 


What Fallout and our world have in common is endless human suffering, a hatred for communism, manipulative and controlling governments, and war, which never changes. As absurd, gory, and comical as Fallout can get, it's in those moments traveling through the wasteland and reading the experiences of people through their notes on terminals or yes, even through the environmental storytelling skeletons, that you can see the cruelty of this world which is not so farfetched from our own.  As Kat will explain in their section, they’re already starting. They’ve been preparing for a world like Fallout for generations. 

 


Fallout: Are the Rich Preparing for a Nuclear Apocalypse

by Kat Kushin


RED: Quotes, someone else's words.


First, just to geek for a second, Fallout is one of my favorite games. I have logged almost 200 hours in the 4th game, and have spent a considerable amount of time in the commonwealth. The gameplay is scary yet rewarding, and the plot is compelling. The use of player choice is something that really makes the series impactful, playing much like Dnd, allowing the player to really pick the version of the commonwealth they wanted to experience. The threat of nuclear war is always a possibility, so games like fallout have always been interesting to unpack. It connects back to any apocalypse scenario, in witnessing what people and systems will do in a state of crisis. How people will cope with such an unfathomable disaster. The show and game compliment each other I think and further develop the fallout lore. Like most apocalypse media there is a fair amount of pessimism surrounding humanity as a whole, as well as brutal honesty about what humanity is capable of. The character’s show a range of morality, and I think do a good job showcasing the difference between authenticity and superficial morality. 


We have Lucy, who is genuine and authentically kind. Her choices are well intended but unlike many of her fellow vault dwellers, she has the self awareness to acknowledge her own failings, and adjust as needed. Her brother is a good contrast to her brave altruism, but shares her self awareness. What we see in the vaults, as well as on the surface is likely what would happen in the chance of a dystopian future. There would inevitably be hope utopias within the chaos and upheaval, where like the intent of shady sands, people would band together to build pockets of hope across the wasteland. And then there would be remnants of the old ways that would transform in the vacuum. Either way, there would be countless people lost to fallout itself, and radiation in general would likely shorten human life expectancy exponentially. 


What would radiation at the level seen in the fallout series do to our bodies? 

In an article titled: Here's how life would actually mutate after nuclear fallout | BBC Science Focus written by Tom Howarth , they highlight the ways fallout would impact the world. There are real locations to base these results on, and they are generally grim. The most common impact of fallout is an inhospitable landscape. The article said the main impact of ionizing radiation on DNA generally leads to mutations ranging from minor changes to severe health issues like cancer and cataracts. There are very rare possibilities of developing advantageous mutations, such as increased resistance to diseases, but they are rare occurrences. An example of this is seen in darker skin tree frogs found in the Chernobyl exclusion zone, which developed in tree frogs to help protect against radiation-induced oxidative stress. Another reaction to the Chernobyl incident is the radioactive boars found in Europe in 2023, and not in the fallout way, but essentially just boars with unusually high radioactivity levels that show up in their meat samples. This could impact food sources in the future, with people consuming unsafe levels of radioactive material through food. 


Overall, the message is clear: radiation from nuclear disasters has severe and long-lasting consequences for both plant and animal life, making affected areas inhospitable for living organisms. Despite some instances of beneficial mutations, they are exceptions rather than the rule, and the likelihood of gaining "superpowers" from radiation exposure is essentially nonexistent.


So where would we want to be to avoid the worst outcomes?

In another article titled, Scientists Reveal Safest Countries To Survive Nuclear Apocalypse on NDTV.com they cover a a study published in the journal Risk Analysis which identifies Australia and New Zealand, along with a few other island nations like Iceland, the Solomon Islands, and Vanuatu, as the best-placed countries to survive a nuclear apocalypse and sustain their populations. The research focused on factors predicting survival after abrupt sunlight-reducing catastrophes such as nuclear war, super volcanoes, or asteroid strikes. Australia and New Zealand scored high due to their robust agricultural production, geographical isolation from likely nuclear fallout zones, and strong infrastructure. Despite Australia's advantages, its close military ties with the UK and the US pose a potential risk. Conversely, New Zealand benefits from its longstanding nuclear-free policy. The study suggests that even in the worst-case scenario of a 61 percent reduction in crops during a prolonged nuclear winter, New Zealand would still have sufficient food supplies. However, other island nations may struggle due to the collapse of industry and social cohesion. The study also predicts significant food production reductions in major powers like China, Russia, and the US, necessitating the adoption of new food production technologies in the aftermath of a nuclear apocalypse. All of this to say, that the United States would be a bad place to be in the instance of Nuclear apocalypse. There were also articles speaking to the safety of Antarctica, as there are no nuclear sites there. But the risk surrounding cold and winter would still be of concern. 


In another article titled: Who Would Take the Brunt of an Attack on U.S. Nuclear Missile Silos? On Scientific American, this article delves into the potential consequences of a nuclear attack on U.S. missile silos, focusing on the environmental and human impacts. Most of these missiles are located in the Midwest. The U.S. Air Force released a comprehensive report detailing the environmental effects of replacing all Minuteman missiles with new Sentinel missiles by the mid-2030s, as part of a $1.5 trillion nuclear arsenal modernization effort.


The missiles are vulnerable to attack due to their fixed locations, and the argument for their continued existence is based on providing fixed targets to exhaust enemy resources. The issue seems to be more with the potential environmental harm from their existence in the first place. The risk for leaks and failures. The article raises concerns about the risks posed by the U.S. land-based missile fleet, including accidental releases of radioactive materials and detonation of warheads. It calls for greater transparency from the Air Force regarding these risks. Overall, the article paints a grim picture of the potential consequences of living with land-based nuclear missiles and emphasizes the need for informed decision-making regarding their continued existence.


In an article on Mira Safety titled: Your Nuclear Attack Map for 2023, they unpack the grim outcome of nuclear attack. Highlighting the areas that would likely be hit first if the US, Russia and China exchanged nuclear warfare. There is also a map to test what fallout would look like with the different types of bombs that currently exist to get a more thorough understanding of what the impact of fallout in most major cities would look like. 


Where would likely be targeted, and where would face fallout:

  1. Remote Military Installations: Initially targeted in a nuclear strike due to their strategic importance and relatively low population density.

  2. Major Cities: Larger urban centers like New York, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, and San Francisco become targets as the conflict escalates.

  3. Coastal Regions: Areas along the coast, particularly in California and coastal New England, are at risk of fallout due to their proximity to major cities and potential primary targets.

  4. Florida: The entire state of Florida is highlighted as facing significant challenges, with many residents likely rushing to evacuate in the aftermath of an attack.

  5. Eastern United States: Fallout affects most of the eastern United States, ranging from minor to severe contamination.

  6. Western Texas, Nevada, Michigan, and Wisconsin: Notably spared from immediate fallout, but potentially uninhabitable in the long term due to nuclear winter and other consequences.

These zones represent areas where fallout is expected to spread rapidly after a nuclear attack, leading to significant health risks and necessitating precautions and protective measures for those affected. Another possibility is that after an initial attack, and counter attack, both sides would face mass casualties and damage and would not attack further. 


A large contributor to casualties would be because of natural responses to the attacks, being forest fires, and environmental catastrophes. Additionally there would be loss of life just from people largely not knowing what to do in the event of an attack. In these instances, there are resources available for educating yourself. 


What to do if Nuclear Fallout Happens:

Instructions for how to prepare for a nuclear explosion found on FEMA's website.
Be Prepared for a Nuclear Explosion

instructions on how to stay safe during a nuclear explosion found on FEMA's website.
How to Safe in the Event of a Nuclear Explosion

Is Nuclear Fallout even likely?

In an article titled: Is Fallout a warning for our future? A global catastrophic risk expert weighs in. | Vox written by Sam Delgado. the article covers the insights provided by Seth Baum, executive director of the Global Catastrophic Risk Institute, regarding the potential effects of a nuclear war, societal preparations, and risk reduction strategies. Baum emphasizes the importance of preventing nuclear war altogether and acknowledges the limitations in managing its aftermath. This is largely because of the lack of resources that the average person has access to, and also the lack of knowledge surrounding how to respond to an emergency at large scale. The failings of the US government to address a crisis is clearly seen in the response to the pandemic. Those outside the immediate blast zones are not taught how to protect themselves against radiation and environmental reactions to the blast, like nuclear winter. The best way to survive a nuclear blast is to prevent one altogether. 


The rich seem to be making moves for what happens after they’ve destroyed the planet, accounting for the possibility of nuclear fallout. It’s argued that this is just a failsafe, and generally purchased with small fractions of their overall wealth. This can be seen as more of a commentary on the disconnect the rich have from basic survival. When we are considering groceries a luxury item, and the world already feels like a dystopian nightmare, the rich building bunkers feels like a logical next step and not necessarily newsworthy. In an article titled:  From luxury bunkers to tactical vehicles, the ultra-rich are preparing for the Big One The article discusses the growing trend among the ultra-rich of preparing for potential catastrophes, such as wars, climate change-induced disasters, or societal breakdowns, by investing in luxury bunkers and tactical vehicles. Mark Zuckerberg's $100-million compound in Hawaii, which includes a 5,000-square-foot bunker, serves as an example of this phenomenon. There's been a significant increase in demand for such facilities, with companies like Hardened Structures and Vivos reporting a surge in inquiries and applications. These shelters are often equipped with advanced security features and amenities, with prices ranging from millions to tens of millions of dollars. The article highlights the historical evolution of bunkers, from state-sponsored projects during the Cold War to private ventures driven by the wealth of the global elite. However, it also raises concerns about the narrative promoted by bunker-building companies and emphasizes the importance of collaboration and community in preparing for potential disasters. In another article, they compare the bunker and island grab, as well as the resource hoarding as a flash back to feudalism. Billionaires are building bunkers and buying islands. But are they prepping for the apocalypse – or pioneering a new feudalism? The article discusses the trend of billionaires purchasing properties with elaborate features like bunkers, sparking speculation about their motivations and whether they are preparing for an impending apocalypse.. The article argues that the billionaires' projects extend beyond bunkers to encompass the creation of self-sustaining ecosystems on their properties. This trend, exemplified by Zuckerberg and others, reflects a shift towards a form of techno-feudalism, where individuals control entire ecosystems akin to feudal lords. While some view these projects as preparations for doomsday scenarios, the article suggests that for billionaires, such endeavors are merely a fraction of their vast wealth and do not necessarily indicate a belief in imminent collapse. Additionally, the article critiques the cultural fascination with billionaires' bunker projects, contrasting it with the challenges faced by ordinary people in affording basic necessities.

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