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My guest today is Dr Bradley Garrett. He is an American social and cultural geographer at the University College of Dublin in Ireland and a writer for The Guardian newspaper in the United Kingdom, and also the author of a new book called Bunker, which is a book on preppers building for the End Times. He's a really interesting guy. We talked about all kinds of cool shit. I really enjoyed it very much.
So please welcome Bradley Garrett government podcast, The Joe Rogan Experience, trained by Joe Rogan podcast by Night All Day. Cheers. So, hey, cheers, brother. Nice to meet you. Good to meet you, too. By the way, congrats on the mustache, the mustache, lower piece combo.
That's the anarchist guy. That guy. That was the mask. Oh, the Guy Fawkes.
That's right. Yeah, right. Yeah, I was I was going more for a kind of a holiday. Val Kilmer is not a holiday, dude. I'm your huckleberry. How good was he in that role?
He was fantastic. Hmm. Many people have played Doc Holloway, but he's the best. So are you a proper yourself? Because you do have one of them GPS watches on. So either you're like a hardcore hiker or you just don't want to get lost.
You were waiting to see the paracord bracelet.
They always have that right. Is that ever come up? When do you ever unravel that thing?
I mean, it's yeah, that always seems to me like someone who, like, preps. You know, you just try a little too hard paracord bracelet.
No, it's a kind of virtue signalling. You never know, though.
I guess it's better to have it, not to need it. Yeah. They need it not to have it. I mean, it is kind of funny when I so I've been I've been hanging out with preppers for about three years now, and inevitably you start drifting towards the culture. Right, as you're talking to people. But every once in a while I'll see someone in a grocery store or whatever. And I'm like, OK, you know, they got the Bowie knife, they got the like, you know, walkie talkies dropped him like, wow, you are really Parakey really.
You know, people walk around with their radios on you because they want to be ready for action at any moment. You live in the mountains, wilderness area. I live in. I live in Big Bear.
Do you did you live there before you got obsessed with prepping? No. So did you move there to accustom yourself or to acclimate yourself to the culture like.
So here's the deal. I one of the communities that I worked with while I was writing this book, Bunker, was a community in South Dakota where there's there's 575 sort of semi subterranean concrete bunkers that were built during World War Two. And they used to store weapons in there. Right. So these are bunkers to protect ordnance.
Jamie's going to turn this towards you there. OK, cool, thanks. I think I've seen this before that now they drive.
They drive like ARV's in there and stuff. Is that the same.
Yeah, exactly. So now you've now you've got like 30 or 40 families that are moving into those bunkers and those families, supercool people, very generous, very kind of spent a lot of time with them. And, you know, they told me if, you know, if it ever hits the fan, come closer.
Come visit us. We'll you know, we've got space for you. You're going to be safe. You're aren't you? Yeah, maybe.
But so so when the when the pandemic hit, you know, of course I thought, well, is this it is this the moment we've been waiting for? So I send everyone messages and sure enough they're packing up and they're going to the bunker field. And then I thought. You know the obvious thing, well, you know, what about my family? What about my elderly parents? What about who else? You know? And I mean, the list starts growing as people that you have to abandon to save yourself.
Right. And so I didn't go, obviously good for you, but but all my family lives in Southern California, my immediate family. And and I started thinking about, like, what is the appropriate bugout plan? And and I think this is a good one. So basically, Big Bear is within an hour and a half of all my family members and I bought a cabin out there. It's got a quarter acre. It's, you know, relatively remote.
I can store some supplies. We can also use that as a family vacation home. Right. So so like in the meantime, we can just enjoy it. But if we ever needed to all sort of leave together at the same time, we could go to the cabin.
It's kind of crazy that you could be at the beach and you could drive two hours and you're in the snow. That's one of the weirdest things about California.
I mean, we have some really interesting terrain. Yeah, well, growing up here, I never took it for granted. Right. And now I've lived in four countries and visited maybe 40.
And every time I come back to California, I think to him this place is unique.
I wanted to take you to get to the valley to get to the site here. Oh, to hear two hours. That's not them.
Yeah, but check this out. The really cool thing is that if you go off the back side a big bear mountain, you can just drop down into the Mojave Desert. So you can be you can go from Big Bear to Joshua Tree in like 30 minutes. And if you really you can take dirt roads in a four by four, you can get there in 20.
Wow. Yeah. So so if you want to do mushrooms, it's a it's a good spot to live.
It's a very good spot to live.
Now you decided to write this book and then you moved there. Was that the idea or did you had you been thinking about living in a place like that first year?
No, I never I never really thought about a plan.
To be honest with you, I've been living in cities for 15 years now, I lived in London and then in Sydney, so I've been in Sydney for the past three years. And, you know, cities just suck the money out of you. So I never I never had any money. I never had any way to to think about it. And I know the pandemic has been, you know, tragic, unfortunate, terrible for a lot of people.
But for me, it was like one of the best things ever happened to me. I came back to California to check this out. I came back to California to take care of my mom because she was having spinal surgery. I had just finished my three year research fellowship at the University of Sydney that that enabled me to write this book with the Doomsday Preppers. And I was going to new job at University College Dublin in Ireland.
And so I landed in L.A. to take care of my mom for for six weeks while she gets her spinal surgery bang. As like I'm wheeling her out of the hospital and they're putting in the the tents in the parking garage at Torrance Memorial Hospital for the overflow of covid patients.
Oh, Jesus. So what time when was I guess this was February, early February.
So it was just when it was starting to pick up. Yeah. And so I'm with my partner, Amanda. We just moved from Sydney and and we we take my mom home and we just, you know, lock ourselves inside for a couple of months and kind of wait for this all to unfold. So I actually finished this book like the final proofs of this book. I finished in lockdown in the early days of the pandemic.
You feel relatively safe when you're in a place like Big Bear because it's Woods. And, you know, just like by the time the virus gets up here and how's it going to get to you? You know, I mean, it's not like you're in these crowded areas.
It's well, you know, the virus doesn't give a shit. It moves wherever it wants. That's true. You know, you have all these people driving from L.A. up there for the weekend.
And, you know, you were also saying that people are pretty cavalier up there. Oh, yeah. Yeah, they they certainly are.
Did you. Does it feel good to be tested? You were tested today. Yeah. Good. If you feel like a weight lifted off of you, it actually.
Yeah. Yeah. Right. Yeah.
It's great because I was thinking I was actually kind of disappointed to see I didn't have the antibodies. Everybody thinks they have them. Everybody does. Everybody in here is like I think in January, I think back in January I had this cough. I'm pretty sure I have to beat it. But I have to say.
I guess my you know, my anxiety about coming here was kind of ramped up by the by the by the possibility that they were going to say, you've tested positive, right? Like drag me out by my hair, you know?
Well, we wouldn't know if you were positive. I would just back up a little and put a mask on, I guess. What would we do? Would you feel comfortable doing a podcast with someone who in the room as positive?
I think it's a bad move. We probably would be would do in the parking lot.
We'll get to that in just a little think we would figure it out if you were positive, would figure it out, would do it in the parking lot with masks on or something.
But here's the thing about Big Bear, right? Is that is that when we were in lockdown in L.A. in the early days of it, like, again, I'm speaking from a space of privilege here, you know, because my paychecks were still coming in whatever. But like, I almost experience a sense of euphoria. Like all my talks were canceled, my plane ticket, I canceled like four plane tickets. The pressure's relieved.
Oh, yeah. And I was like, I hang out with my mom. This is great, you know? But you get you know, you get through that initial phase and then you get into the stamina phase. Right. And like, that's something we should really talk about, because if you if you're thinking about locking yourself in a bunker, you know, stamina is going to be really important. And when they shut down the beaches and the trails in Los Angeles and I couldn't get outside anymore, I mean, that had a devastating mental effect on me.
Did they do that, ZIGMAS? Well, they shut themselves up there now. So when we moved up to Big Bear immediately, we could go we could go trail running again. We could be outside. And, you know, is it San Bernardino County?
Yes. Yes. So they're allowed they have different rules, lower population on that. Yeah. A lot more space.
Yeah, yeah. Yeah. The the trail thing was a real bummer. The, the blocking off the beaches too.
It's like there was in the beginning, there was so much scrambling because they weren't really sure how it was transmitted or when it was dangerous, when it wasn't dangerous. Now they're pretty sure there was a study done that shows that it dies almost instantly. It's in sunlight. So when you're outside at the beach, it's probably very little chance of spreading. So a lot of people took this that when the protests were happening, it's a very little chance that it's going to spread during the protests, which is probably true during the day.
But the thing is, the protests don't end during the day. People were jammed on top of each other all throughout the night and it easily could have gotten you then. Yeah, they're showing that also even simulated UV light. There was a study done that showed that artificial UV artificial sunlight, which simulated sunlight also kills it.
I had I was out in a Joshua tree yesterday and I went for a seven mile trail run. Damn. Did you bring some water?
How hot is it out there? I went through four bottles of water. Kind of scary. I actually I forgot my I usually have my CamelBak that I run with and I forgot it. So I just I stocked up on water and anyway, I was slime and water, but I was on the trail like I mean, way out, way out in the middle of the national park. Right. To be totally open space.
And I and I run up on this hiker and she like, you know, put your backpack on the ground. She pulls the mask out and puts the mask on, whatever, you know.
And I'm like, the is pretty wide. Yeah. I didn't say anything, but it's like it's kind of like people stare at me.
I know people are scared if you want to really be scared. I'm in the middle of a book right now. My buddy Matt Staggs recommended this. I want to tell people about this because this is fucking excellent. Now, I want to say before I say this, do not get this book. If you have anxiety, just don't. It's called Survivor's Song. It's a novel by Paul Tremblay. I guess that's how you say his name. Paul Tremblay.
It's fucking excellent but is terrifying. And it is about a pandemic. It's about a pandemic that hits the East Coast. It's a fake pandemic like a type of rabies that is easily spread to people.
There's got to be loads of people writing books about pandemic.
Well, this obviously was written a long time ago, for sure. For sure. I think.
I don't know what year it came out.
I'm not so sure I got the audio book, but I just wonder if we're going to reach a saturation point on the topic where people are like, I'm not touching a book has anything to do with the pandemic. You know, after thinking, after thinking about it for years, some people.
Yeah, but that's just some people are just they they're angry, you know, like I had a friend who was a cross, my friend, Brigitte Fettucini.
She was across the street from someone without a mask. No one around her, someone on the other side of the street started screaming at her, put on your fucking mask, put your fucking mask on. No one anywhere near them across the street. Yeah. People are losing their marbles. I know.
Well, it's it's a classic ficco, right? We all start policing each other. Yeah, well, it's also people's anxiety and insecurity and people that are emotionally and mentally unstable.
Now is their time to shine because this is like this is like what they've been what people like preppers. I would imagine. What I'm not saying all preppers are emotionally unstable, but what preppers have been working for is this moment where all of their anxiety and all of this paranoia actually comes to fruition. Like, see, I told you so. Yeah, right.
No, the justification. Yeah. For the prepping. But I think a lot of that comes from. Feeling belittled, right, like they've been mocked, they've been made fun of. Sure. And, you know, people are people were prior to the pandemic, embarrassed to admit that they were prepping, you know.
Yeah. I mean, which is odd. Yeah.
In fact, I've been working on this book for three years and about a month into the pandemic. I get this email from my brother who's here with me right now, and he's like, oh, yeah, you know, just so you know, I've got I've got a storage unit with some masks and some food.
And I'm like, What? You didn't you didn't think you might mention that to me, you know?
But I mean, you know, it's it's it's sort of it's almost deemed pathological. Right. Like, people equate prepping to hoarding. Yeah. Like, why do you need all that stuff, you know. Yeah. But the thing is, if you.
In order to not stockpile in that way, right, you have to have so much faith in capitalism, you have to have so much faith in our social systems, you have to have faith that everything is going to hold together roughly in the way that it is right now. And, of course, the world that we built, the society that we built is is incredibly new. Right. You only have to go back a few hundred years. And it's like if you weren't stockpiling, you were effectively committing suicide.
You couldn't make it through winter. Right.
Because people are growing their own food, raising their own animals.
Now, it's like we we have this expectation that you're going to be able to, you know, order your takeout or, you know, go to the grocery store and and stock up. You know, think about this. Imagine this scenario. Imagine that the that the lethality rate on this virus was like 10 percent. Right. Right. Like, what do you have to do to convince those grocery store workers to come to work at that point? No one's coming to work.
No one's driving the trucks. No one's going to deliver anything. And then what preppers would say is we're 72 hours to Anarky or 72 hours to animal. Right.
It's like once you shut down those kind of supply lines, right. Our entire mentality starts to shift into a different mode.
Yeah. And it doesn't take long before you think I'm going to I'm going to take something from my neighbor. At this point. I'm hungry. My family's hungry.
Sure. Yeah. I mean, it's it gets real scary. Or cooperate with your neighbor, hopefully. Yeah. You know, I, I hunt so I have a lot of meat. And so one of the things that happened during the pandemic, when it hit, I had a lot of people come over and I gave them meat because I have three commercial freezers here at the studio.
I think, you know, if you shoot an elk, elk, 400 pounds of meat, a lot of meat, it's the great thing.
As long as the power stays on and I have electricity, I have frozen meat so I can I can give a lot of it out.
So you got a backup generator? I do, but I'm not a pepper, you know, but.
I'm prepared in some ways, and then when all this came down, basically all I did is I stockpiled on a lot of dried stuff like rice, pasta, things that, you know, you can cook easily.
Well, that's the thing is people get fixated on prepping as this kind of you know, I built a multi-million dollar bunker or whatever, whatever spectacular stories that people hear, which, you know, I'm happy to happy to verify if you want to get into those. But, you know, like prepping on a on a practical level, like every day prepping is just it's just common sense. Yeah.
Just having, you know, having enough food to last a few days and thinking through, you know, what what might happen, you know, in a blackout or, you know, the taps not working or whatever. These things do happen. Yeah, they do happen.
And but I wanted to get into the psychology of prepping, prepping because it seems to be conflated with conspiracy theorists in some way, like preppers or it's the tinfoil hat brigade.
It's like those those type of folks, folks who think 5G is causing covid, you know, I mean, I get there's for whatever reason prepping, which should be just prudent, you know, common sense preparing, you know, having something that can purify your water if everything goes weird. Yeah.
You know, going camping every once in a while just to get a sense of what it's like to be outdoors. Yeah. And populaton, pull your water out of a river and you know, it's great to have those practical skills.
Yeah, it's camping is fun as long as you know it's not permanent. Isn't that weird. Well, so I mean, and this is the thing about disaster, right. Is that if if it has an endpoint, it's something that we can cope with. Right. Yeah. So so take nuclear war, for example. Right. Like let's say let's say we get a text message on our phone. Remember in Hawaii in twenty eighteen, everyone got that message that the ballistic missile was incoming.
Right. So imagine we get that message right now and you're like, well bratten we we actually have a bunker underneath this, the studio. Right. So you go into the bunker but we know after Ellas nuked. Right. And it's gone that if we stay in this bunker for 14 days, the radiation levels are going to be a fraction of what they were when that new kid. Right. So so you have an endpoint there. We have to make it to day 14.
And that's why people are able to psychologically cope with it. Whereas, you know, the situation we're in right now, like what we have when is the endpoint? Like, that's why people are cracking because they can't see the end of it. Right?
Well, they're cracking for a bunch of reasons. Yeah. First of all, they're cracked because the economic stability is nonexistent. It's gone. 50 percent of our restaurants are dead, you know. I mean, how many retail shops are dead? It's terrible. Yelp had some statistic the other day that I was reading online about all the different businesses that have been impacted. We don't even know what's happening with comedy clubs. It's just guesswork right now. But I think in Los Angeles, a lot of them are probably going to wind up going under across the country.
A lot of them are going to wind up going under restaurants. I had the owners of Feliks and the head chef, Evan, and the owner Janet on the podcast recently, and they were explaining how the Feliks is a really great restaurant in Venice, that almost every restaurant operates with a very small amount of profit, you know, their profit margin. What did she say? Like 15 percent, 14 percent, something like that.
So so imagine all of a sudden that's cut to zero for several months. And then you're asked to occupy 50 percent of your restaurant, which is obviously going to diminish your profits radically as well. It's like it's just a survival game and there's no end in sight. Right. So here we are in July. No one anticipated this. In March, we thought, you know, by the time June rolls around, everything's going to be up and running.
No, here we are, July. Everything's locked down again. And there's even talk of another stay at home order in Los Angeles, which is even scarier.
So so let's get back to your conspiracy theories, OK? If someone told you that we would be in this situation a year ago, would you believe them? Sure you would have. I would have, yeah.
Because the pandemic seemed like a realistic level because I've been to the Centers for Disease Control. Right. I went to Galveston, Texas, for the Center of Disease Control for a show that I did with my friend Duncan and Duncan Trussell. And I went down there and we talked to these doctors that work with these viruses and they scared the shit out of us. We went down there for a television show that we were doing for sci fi, and it was basically on the idea of weaponized viruses.
The basic premise of the show was what if someone engineered a virus and released it on our own, you know, on the country like a weaponized virus? And they said that's not what we have to worry about. We have to worry about his nature. That's we have to worry about turns out both because this virus most likely had been leaked from a lab. What we're dealing with with covid-19, according to my friend Brett Weinstein, who is a biologist, and he detailed on a podcast that I did with him all of the different points of.
Of evidence that lead to what he believes is a very likely scenario, that it was released from accidentally release from a lab and not actually from a wet market, that the wet markets, the cover up, it's like the disease is too advanced. It has too many hallmarks and indicators of a virus that have been tampered with for study, for for for studying the lab and for examinations and all the different tests that they would run. And so you got both those things right.
You have you have the possibility of something just morphing in nature, like many other pandemics that have happened in the past. And then what we have now, which is this weird virus, it doesn't make any sense. And we were talking about all the different different symptoms that people get from it, neurological problems, blood clotting. I was reading this article where they're saying that the people that have died from covid, when they've done autopsies on them, they found blood clots in every major organ.
And they're like, this is astonishing. Like, this is so weird.
Yeah, it does seem very long to the liver kidney, but just blood clots everywhere.
It's like people are hemorrhaging. It's very strange. It's a strange fucking virus. And the the transmissibility is that the the the ease of transmission is terrifying.
It's so it's so contagious. It's a ridiculously contagious virus.
So once we went to that Center for Disease Control, I started getting scared. I saw the 2015 Bill Gates TED talk on pandemics about the possibility of a pandemic. And I got scared of it, too, so. I would have thought it's possible, yeah, I would never would have thought it's impossible. So here's the thing. Regardless of where this virus came from, you have to imagine that there are governments and individuals who are now keyed in to how effective this visit, this virus was at crippling capitalist economies.
Sure. Because it's the thing. The thing is, we created mikovits pathways, right? I mean, it's international flights, it's international trade. It's people moving around. It's it's, you know, the neoliberal global capitalist system that we built over the past 30 years that created the pathways that that took the virus everywhere at once. Right.
So if this were to be a test run, it's now proven to be extremely effective. And so you have to imagine the governments around the world, probably including the United States, are thinking, well, you know, how could how could we weaponize this potentially? And this is the thing, I mean, I was thinking that, but, well, I don't I don't I don't know either. But the thing is, we you know, the threats, existential threats that we face now have been multiplied exponentially.
Right in the past. In the past, you know, post-World War Two. Right. We had I mean, this is the first sort of global catastrophe. Right. You know, world world wars. Right. But then once we develop nuclear weapons and we're just past the 75th anniversary of the the Trinity test now, you know, once we create that ability to destroy ourselves and potentially the entire world, we have to live with with the possibility of that happening right now, stack on top of that artificial intelligence, climate change, you know, synthetic biotech, all all of these threats that we face are something that we have to kind of hold in our heads all the time.
And I think it's cracking us mentally to like think about these possibilities. So, yeah, and some of the preppers are conspiracy theorists. Right. And they're spinning some really outlandish scenarios, but a lot of them are just trying to work through these things. Right. And rather than get caught in this kind of perpetual future tense, like, you know, thinking about something terrible happening, they're trying to take action now in the present. And that gives them some sense of of of peace.
Right. Like, it gives them a sense of like it gives them some solid footing in the present. And a lot of the preppers I talked to were are not actually very anxious or paranoid at all.
Right. Because they have a plan. It's those of us who don't have a plan that are that are anxious. Well, you've talked to them posters, you know.
Yeah, they feel vindicated. No, not really. Know what what most of them have told me is that this was a mid-level crisis. Well, they're right about that.
Right. I mean, if Yellowstone blows, this is going to look like a cakewalk. Yeah. If we get hit with an asteroid, I mean, it's a wrap for humanity. Yeah. If there's a solar flare that takes out the power grid, we've got real problems.
This is minor in comparison. When you look at the the actual fatality rate for healthy people, it's very, very low. You know, it's less than one percent, much less than half of one percent for for most healthy people.
So when you look at what could happen if Yellowstone blows, that's a continent killer.
Oh, yeah. I mean I mean, we're talking about volcanic volcanic ash cloud in the sky. Nuclear winter. Yeah.
Killing, killing crops, killing all over the United States. All over the world. Yeah.
I mean, you got to have a jet and go to New Zealand, like instantly.
It's like, you know, I don't even know if that's New Zealand is in a volcanic zone.
I mean, it's like this is one of the great red herrings of our time that, you know, that all of these wealthy people are going to flee to New Zealand and find safety there. I mean, I also find it totally ironic that a lot of them are sort of, you know, libertarian free market capitalism. They're quite happy to make money off this system. But when shit goes wrong, they want a really strong government to clamp down and take care of it, you know, is that what they want?
I think they just want a remote place to escape with a small amount of people and a lot of wildlife resources and real natural beauty. Look, New Zealand's gorgeous, New Zealand's fantastic. I have friends who go there every year. Yeah, I've spent a lot of time there. So I bought a crazy farm out there.
He's got like a giant ranch. Well, that's you know, it's like it's got the quality there.
It's got, you know, clean water. It's good. It's English speaking. It's got a stable government, you know, all of that abundance of wildlife and no predators.
They've got a it's a weird situation over there. It's a a hunter's paradise, apparently, because.
Well, sort of it's really it's it depends on your philosophy. But most most hunters that are I would say that if you if you look at like what with the idea of hunting is the idea of hunting is supposed to be you get your your resources, your meat from the natural world.
I want there to be a balance in the natural world.
There's no balance in New Zealand and New Zealand. They have to helicopter over the stags and gun them down because they're overpopulated, because they literally get to the point where they worry about diseases and there's no predators there. What do you know, the whole the whole history of how it's populated with animals? No, I don't.
It was they were brought over there by the Europeans in eighteen hundreds as like a hunting sanctuary. They brought over stag and all these animals that don't exist in their red deer, all these these these invasive animals. But then they don't have any way to control their population. So they have these like fucking huge herds of these animals roaming over the fields. Luckily, there's not a lot of people, but there's a lot of controversy behind it. Like there's one recently that's going on right now.
I should tell people about. There's an animal called Atah. Have you ever heard of Atah? No, t.A HRR. It's a fascinating animal because it looks like it's straight out of Star Wars.
I was going to say it sounds like it's from Star Wars.
I think it's an Asiatic animal. I think I think it's native to like. The Alps or some I forget where it's from Himalayan. Yeah, there it is. OK, it's a large it's fucking weird looking man. It's this crazy hairy looking, taking that picture right there. Yeah. Bam, go that.
Look at that fucking thing. What? Yes. Look at that thing. It's amazing.
Well, one of the best first of all, it's a delicious animal and they are in New Zealand and they're very difficult to hunt because they live in these like really high altitude, rocky areas that are very difficult to traverse, very hard for hunters to get to them. It's extremely dangerous. A good buddy of mine, Adam Greentree, was hunting one and he fell and got really badly injured. And he had to get helicoptered out of there.
And he was by himself, really hard animal to get to. Well, they decided recently it's a very controversial decision to eradicate them. So they're going to even though there's just like this really thriving industry where all of these people's livelihood depends on this animal, these people in these rural communities, these hunting guides, all these different people that live off of these animals, they've decided for whatever reason, I'm not exactly sure what the reason is, but the New Zealand government has decided to eradicate these animals.
It's got to be this fantasy of getting back to the kind of precolonial past. Right. Like if you eradicate all the animals that were brought in with colonisation and you can get back to some kind of like indigenous status or whatever, I mean, maybe they would have to bring back the hostile eagle.
There's an enormous eagle that used to hunt humans that lived on New Zealand, the largest eagle that ever lived, lived in New Zealand, and they believe that the Polynesian people wound up killing them all.
Well, you've got to go you've got to go Jurassic Park and get the DNA and resurrect the Polynesian people.
Who the fuck lived in. It's not Polynesian people who the original settlers of New Zealand, the Maori, the Maori. Are they considered Polynesian?
I think they were, yeah. I think they were Polynesian sailors that landed there.
So when we don't shit. Polynesians are fucking incredible, though. If you think about the fact those people figured out how to get in a boat and go to literally the most remote spot in the world, which is a white dude, have you ever seen their maps?
They are made out of sticks, no teeth. So there are these there are 3D maps that are made from like sticks put together and they can tell wind and air currents and they can read the stars with them. That's how they navigate it.
Really. Yeah. Whoa. Yeah, they're fantastic. Where did you see one? I don't know. Well, actually my my I did my master's degree in maritime archaeology, so I probably picked that up during that degree at some point.
So you you did some of your studies, whereas we're in Sydney, right?
Yeah, I start I started I actually started here at the University of California. I did anthropology and history. I went to Australia to do a degree in maritime archaeology. And then I went to London to do a PhD in cultural geography. Oh, wow. So I've I've hopped for disciplines to get anything.
Jamie, let me see what this is. Yeah. Yeah. Look at this shit.
They're sweet, right. Wow.
What is obviously I have absolutely no idea how to. Oh my. How to read those things. That's so weird.
This so how do they tie them together with twine or like what is. Yeah I think it's twine. And what are those images supposed to represent. It's it's it's the wind, the tides and the stars, I think. Does that word hold on, scroll up Micronesian. Mm hmm. Whoa, Micronesians.
You ever heard the word. Yeah. Micronesians. So that Micronesia is like a chook with those four islands truck lagoon that's in chook. And I can't remember the other islands. But why how crazy that is.
Yeah. I love learn new shit. So here's the thing.
Right, is that, is that one of the things that preppers are into is like recovering these kinds of skills so, you know, trying to learn how these things work and building them again.
When I was at the University of California, I did two years of Lytic technology where I, you know, I can make arrowheads, stone tools, Kyril and axes.
Yeah, I spent years doing that. You know how to make an atlatl. Yeah. Really? Yeah. Can you throw on you know how to do it.
Yeah. Do it through an at at UC Riverside. Yeah. Where I was studying. Yeah. We made this atlatl dart and then we sort of like, you know, cleared out the, the kind of alleyway in the experimental archaeology lab where we're working.
We're checking this atlatl indoors or outdoors. We probably couldn't get away with that now that we're not outdoors.
Now, when they taught you how to do all this stuff, when when they're talking about, like building ancient arrowheads, is the technology behind creating those the craftsmanship?
Is it theoretical or are they getting it down from the people that where the knowledge has been handed down?
Oh, it's definitely the case that the knowledge is being handed down. And what's really interesting is that is that I know you talked to Graham Hancock, but like so the earliest spear points that we think are are evidence of the earliest occupation of the Americas. These are Clovis. So he talked about Clovis cultures, right. Those Clovis points are so hard to make, dude. And they're making these like twelve, thirteen thousand years ago. So so it's essentially you take you get a piece of rock.
Right. And you have to flatten the rock first. Right. So you've got to send flakes with a hammerstone across the rock and create like a ridge down the middle. Mm hmm. And then in one strike, you take that whole ridge off and you create this flat expanse down the middle of the spear point with one stone. Yeah. And that's what you that's what you have the shaft to with some sinew or whatever. But the thing is that that one strike, you have to do it on both sides.
Right. You have to make a flat edge on both sides down the middle of the spear point. It almost always cracks that thing in half.
And what is the material that you're using for the striker and what is the material used for the arrowhead?
So if the easiest stone to flint knap with obsidian, it's got a really, really high silica value in it. And it's it's highly heated. So it's like glass. Right. And that's what the Aztecs were were making their weapons out of, too. So you can see you can see obsidian weapons all up and down north, central and South America. But you can also work with like Flint or chert. Those things are a little trickier.
They're all over Texas. The Comanche left so many arrowheads. Go to Gary Clark Jr.'s Instagram page.
He has a fucking perfect arrowhead that they found on a friend of his ranch. It's amazing when you look at this and you go, OK, this is probably hundreds of years ago some guy sent this. And look at that like a perfect.
Oh, that's gorgeous. Look how perfect it is. It's perfect. I'll make you one.
I would appreciate that. But I. I found one once I was hunting in Nevada. I was doing a high country music. I found one fucking lost it. I don't know what happened, but it was just it was a chunk it had broken. But that one go back to that one again real quick.
That's perfect. I mean, look at the it's really nice.
It's not damaged at all. So what you what do you think that's made out of. I think it's chert.
So chert often has this kind of chalky exterior that you got to get off of it before you hurt. Yeah, I've never heard of that. Yeah. And how old do you think that is?
Guess. Seven, eight hundred, you think so? Check this out, man, one of the one of the coolest experiences I ever had. So I did archaeology for about five years.
I excavated in in Mexico and the Yucatan Peninsula, in Hawaii, in Australia and in southern and northern California. And when I was in Mexico, we were we were working on this old village, cites a post classic Maya site. And we're digging up like there's just loads of pottery. Right? Because think about if you're you know, you make a pot, inevitably you're going to drop and break that thing. And what do you do? You sweep it out the front door, you know?
And so we'd find these huge hit that are just full of of pottery shards. And, you know, after a while, you just become totally desensitized to it. You're just chucking them in a bag. And here's what I found. Ten more or whatever. And then one of them, I pulled out and it had a fingerprint in it.
Wow. Oh, dude. And I'm looking at the thing and it's like suncrest in the sun. Yeah.
Suddenly I've traveled through time. Right. I've gone back 100 years and I'm sitting there, you know, sitting there with this person in their house with their thumb print pressed into this thing.
It really unnerved me. Wow.
I mean, you know, in archaeological terms, may you know, it doesn't actually tell us that much.
We got we got 10000 pieces of those pots. But on a personal level, you know, experiencing that visceral connection to the history of humankind is unparalleled. Right.
Because, you know, someone made the pottery, but it's almost abstract until you see that fingerprint. Yeah, that's fucking awesome. God, yeah.
We also one time I found this, we were walking through the jungle. We were actually surveying. We found a temple in the Yucatan that like the local people knew about, but no one from the university had seen it. And so this guy is like, oh, you want a temple? You know, the temple over there.
You know, it's so we're like hacking through the bushes with our through the vines, with our machetes.
And and we come up on this temple. And I was like, oh, man, this is this is crazy. Like, how many people have seen this thing in the past, you know, 300 years. And then they were kind of some central stairs going up the middle of the temple. And I went there and looked on the ground and there was this like there was this figurine there and it had it had eyes and like a kind of a little hat.
But it was like somebody had made this thing out of clay and pressed it together. And I never figured out how old that was. I mean, it could have been made more recently. Did you take it kind of weird?
We bagged it and tagged it, as they say, in archaeology and it went back to the lab.
What are the rules on that? Like, if you if you go to a temple, they take you to a temple and you find something that's there. What are you allowed to say? I'm a scientist.
Well, OK. So I became really uncomfortable with the idea that, you know, because I had a degree I had some kind of authority over other people's culture. Right. That's why I'm asking. Yeah. And I always felt like, well, that, you know, that village that's there, that's there. Shit. Why are we taking it?
You know, and obviously it's for the advancement of knowledge and maybe it brings some benefit to their village, but we don't know. Right. So this is eventually what drove me out of archaeology from my my master's thesis. I went up to Northern California and I worked with this tribe called The Weinerman Wind to and they it's it's a pretty tragic story up there, man. They they had been there for thousands of years. And, you know, we we Americans decided that they were going to build a giant dam so they could have a reservoir up there.
And they and they inundated all of their ancestral homeland. It's like all of their spiritual sites, all of their graveyards. I mean, all this stuff went underwater. So I'd spent two years doing a degree in maritime archaeology, I've been diving shipwrecks all over the world and I and I went up there and I said, let me let me dive. Let me dive in the in the reservoir. And, you know, I've got my underwater camera and, you know, I said, I'll take some photos, I'll bring them back.
We can have a chat about it.
And the spiritual leader of the tribe, Kaleen, she says, All right, well, why don't you just hang out for a bit and then maybe we can do that later.
So, like, days turn into weeks and then, you know, a couple of months and I'm getting nervous. I'm like, I have to write my thesis. I have no I don't I don't have my data during these months. You're hanging out. I'm just. Yeah, I'm just hanging out there dinner with them. Yeah. Yeah, exactly. And how do you have all this time. Yeah. We actually went well it's it's the degree.
Right. Like, like that's what I'm there to do.
I'm doing my field work and you can just hang out for months. Yeah. But I'm supposed to be like doing research and writing a thesis, you know. And so I after a while I pressor, I'm like, look, I've got to, I've got to do something. And she said, you know what, the problem with you white people is? You're obsessed with stuff.
You just want to get your hands on the things you know. And she said, if you want to know about our culture, you've been hanging out with us this whole time. What can you tell me about our culture?
Like, why do you need to get that that all that stuff that's, you know, underwater out there? Why do you need that? You know, you can just talk to us. So that was sort of my bridge from moving from archaeology into cultural geography, which is much more about, you know, thinking about people's relationships with places and landscapes and their culture is documented.
In what way how how are they maintaining their historical records?
Well, that's what this was actually my one of my first academic articles as I wrote about how a lot of their religious ceremonies had changed because the places that they used to go were now underwater.
Right. So so in one case, there was this there was a rock that young women went to as part of a puberty ceremony, and it used to be above water. And they had that ceremony in the spring. But now when the that's when the the waters are high. Right. So now they do it in sort of drought season so that they can still get to the rock. And so they had they had changed the whole kind of, you know, cultural their cultural fabric had been altered by that inundation event.
And basically, you know, the point that she was trying to get across to me, it was like that didn't break us, like we're still us, even even though these things have had to change, you know, and it was an education for me as an archaeologist because, you know, when you when you go into a place with that very kind of like data driven empirical mindset, you know, you want you want hard facts that that make sense, that you know, that you can you can write up clearly.
And what she was telling me was something that was a little bit more it was more nuanced. It you know, it was difficult to pin down. It was more, you know, qualitative. Right. And so I had to I had to grapple with that. And that was that was a big learning lesson for me.
So in this but when you're dealing with things that are more nuanced, you you still need to kind of know what happened and when it happened. So how were they keeping records of what happened and when it happened?
Well, they had oral histories, but I can oral histories. Yeah. But I could also go to the Bureau of Reclamation, the Forest Service. You know, I was actually working for the Bureau of Land Management at that time. But I mean, so those federal agencies have records of what happened, right? I mean, you know, with the building of the dam and what was recorded beforehand and all of that, which is kind of fucked that they did that, right.
Yeah, but of the. But what I mean internally, I mean, in the tribe, everything is aurally. Yeah, you know, it's probably more people writing things down now these days, but, you know, they've got oral histories that go back a long time. When I was in Australia, get this man, I was talking to an Aboriginal clan out there and they were telling me that in the Sydney Harbour, they can actually like they can draw you a map of what is underwater in the Sydney Harbour because they have a cultural memory of when that wasn't underwater.
That goes back tens of thousands of years. And they have passed that down and they actually retain that memory.
So they have a precise age memory when the oceans were less deep.
Yeah, I don't know if it's pre ice age, but the water levels were, you know.
Yeah. So the water levels are lower. It has to be pre ice age. It was before ten thousand years. Yeah, right. So these people have this idea of what was going on and they just kept passing it down generation to generation. Yeah. And this how accurate is their their memory of it. I don't know.
I mean I'm sure, I'm sure people are doing research on that. But, you know, if if you look at those those the drawings, you know, there's like traditional paintings that you see that are often paintings of landscapes. Some of those have been mapped onto, you know, aerial imagery and they're startlingly accurate. Right. And so you have to wonder, like, how how did people who didn't have those aerial views get that view down on the landscape?
Right. Right. I mean, yeah. Yeah, do you do you stitch that together by just knowing the place so well that you you can kind of depicted in that way, or is there some kind of I mean, you can get all hippy dippy about it and it's about astral projection or people were like taking hallucinogenics and flying across the landscape or, you know, yeah, it's when you look at ancient maps that are really accurate, it really is kind of amazing that they did all the stuff from a land level and they did it looking down.
They figured out from traversing, going around the circumference of a continent, you know, when when they when they would do that, if they would go around the outside of a continent and mark it.
And then you look at it and it's stunningly similar to what we take today with satellite imagery. That really is amazing.
It is amazing. And, you know, we spend a lot of time talking about how how advanced we are now right now. And I think what we've done with technology, but we don't talk a lot about all these skills that we've lost. Sure. And so that's why I like going out into the landscape. I love going out for a couple of days, just like, you know, hiking through the woods with a compass, you know, figuring out leave, turn the phone off, leave it at home.
I mean, give someone a sextant and tell them figure your way across the ocean, right? Yeah. Good luck. Right.
I mean, just looking at one of those things or how about that ancient Greek computer thing? What is that called? Oh, the abacus. No, no, no. That's a counting thing.
The the that that there's a device that they found that consists of a myriad of moving gears that took forever for them to try to understand.
It's called the NTSB who want to fuck up the word.
You know, I'm talking about Jamie. Yeah, Jamie knows what I'm talking about. There's this this thing that they found that's intensely complex and it's thousands of years old and they found it in a shipwreck and they had to try to back engineer what this fucking thing is and how it worked.
But Astrolabe, I think, right astrally, I don't think two dimensional model of the celestial sphere, that's that's really cool. That is a different thing, though, and it is really cool. Pretty amazing. The original smartphone, that's funny, but no, there's it's it's an ancient Greek, essentially. It's an ancient computer. Just pull up ancient computer and teeth. That's what I mean.
I typed in ancient Greek ocean exploration. So. No, no, no. But it's not that it's not an ocean explanation exploration tool. It's actually like a computer. It's a God damn it, I wish I wrote it down.
It's the word is a.. That's it. That's it. Teeth Erica thing. Yeah.
Sarah That's it. So click on that thing.
They found that and they're like, OK, what in the fuck is this and this anti go.
So I could read an anti Kifissia mechanism, a 2000 year old computer, and they found this and they had to try to figure out what this is and see how they've kind of 3D mapped it and reimagined. Yeah.
I mean, I don't even know what they used it for. Let's let's let's click on that what is the anti that the article, the write on Daily Express itself? Yeah, so what it says, Google Doodle marks the discovery of the ancient Greek computer.
So this is track and calculate position, the moon's yeah, OK, this is the moon and sun and planets, as well as predict the dates and colors of color.
So it is a solar storm. Yeah, in some way. But it's a computer. Right. So this thing is thousand year old device was even capable of adding, multiplying, dividing and subtracting. So they found it in May 17th, 1982, and it was discovered in a Roman cargo shipwreck. For years they were baffled by the purpose of the mysterious object and initially assumed the mechanism was a gear wheel. But the archaeologists soon discovered that the device was a complex machine capable of various factions.
The A.K. fear mechanism gathered interest in the 1950s and its complexity, function and computational powers has led it to be dubbed the first ever computer.
Fucking crazy. Do you don't you wonder how much stuff we have lost? Oh yeah. You know, or how much stuff is still in the ground. Oh yeah. It kind of haunts me. I you know, you could go crazy thinking that when is start digging up everything and try and unveil these ancient mysteries.
Well, you really could, you know, particular when you think about, you know, I don't know if you're familiar with you said, you know about Randall Graham Hancock, but you know about Graham Hancock and Randall Carlson, the two of them sort of combined their their data and the research. And Randall Carlson is an expert in astrological or excuse me, asteroidal or meteorological impacts. Would you say meteor impacts, right.
Asteroid impacts. I think that's think. And once it hits the earth, it's an asteroid. Yeah.
And he is a proponent of this theory that is gaining a lot of traction, that the Ice Age ended abruptly because of an impact.
And it's coincides with soil samples, with these samples that they've shown that show a lot of that so-called kryptonite nuclear glass. Yeah, the Trinity Trinity. Thank you.
That from the Trinity project, right? Yeah. They they found this stuff when they do core samples somewhere in that neighborhood of 12000 years, which is the neighborhood where the ice age ended, scattered all throughout Europe and United States. And they believe that something happened, some sort of an impact, multiple impacts around 12000 years ago and ended the Ice Age abruptly and probably caused a lot of flooding and probably was the the origin of the Epic of Gilgamesh flood story, Noah's Ark flood story, and also why there seems to be some sort of a reset of civilization.
There's a pre 12000 years ago technology, and then there's sort of a dead zone of several thousand years and then things reignite again after that.
Well, it lends credence to that kind of aural memory, too, right? Like, if like if that memory has been passed down and what's left is this kind of kernel. Right? There's like there's something there that we're attaching stories to to make sense of it. Yeah. And this is where the conspiracy theories come from, to write like one of the one of the preppers that I spoke to is actually here in California. The first time I met him, he started talking about planet X, Nibiru, Nibiru, Nibiru.
And he he saw Zacharias Hitchon. You ever read his stuff now? Fascinating weirdo stuff.
Well, he's so he so he told me, you know, and Iberia's Nibiru is hiding behind the sun and it's going to emerge. And the last time it emerged was 4000 years ago. And that's where the that's where the flood story comes from, because it's going to create a pole shift. So the North and South Pole are going to flip. And that's what creates the tidal wave event. And so he told me that he was building his bunkers to be submerged in 200 feet of water.
Well, he might be adding to the story. Well, no, I mean, but what's that's part of the problem. But what's interesting there is you kind of you know, there's a with these conspiracy theories, there's always a kernel of truth, right?
There's always a kernel of something that you can hold on to you, but then it just gets spin. And it's slightly weird way. And I think with some of it is kind of displaced anxiety. Right. Because we like these disasters have happened.
We know they have happened. We know that they will happen.
We don't quite want to admit it, but it's a lot easier to pin it on some kind of, you know, impossible event than just to decide that, like, the world is chaos and we have to deal with it.
Yeah, there's many, many, many points of chaos. It's not just aliens.
Exactly. Zechariah situation is fascinating.
You should I mean, I'm not saying I buy into any of his theories, but what I am saying is what he did expose that is undeniable was the rich history of illustrations from Soumaya that are really fascinating, particularly the origin of the caduceus, the origin of the double helix DNA.
That seems to be it's when you look at that, that sign that that symbolizes medicine, you know, the two snakes crossing together that originated in ancient SUMAYA and it originated with a lot of these ancient clay tablets that showed what could be it really is opened into.
Rotation, right, but what he interpreted, the way he interpreted and he's got a very extraordinarily unusual interpretation of the Sumerian text and his interpretation of Sumerian text is that it is a historical record of these beings. It came from another planet and genetically manipulated human beings. And the crazy thing is, when you look at these clay tablets and the illustrations, you see these strange things like you see these godlike creatures holding these humanoid creatures that are much smaller than them with tails.
They have tails like monkeys. You see the entire solar system. We're talking about 6000 year old clay tablets. Right back then, the the general consensus was that the world was flat. If you if you would talk to, you know, many you know, many people from many different cultures, they did not think that the the solar system had a son in the center and that there is planets that were orbiting it.
Well, they had a depiction of the solar system, not just a depiction, but all of the planets in the proper order, like pull up the image of the Sumerian solar system.
This is 6000 years ago. Look at this picture. So these gods look at that, the sun, the center, all the planets, no extra planets, all the planets, Pluto in there.
I think it was how many we got there.
One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, 10, eleven.
Well, they counted the moon as a planet, which is odd. And then they counted Nibiru. Nibiru is this planet that they claim that's it right there. That's on this three thousand six hundred year elliptical orbit right now.
There's no evidence in the Nibiru. There's no evidence that that's true. But who knows how much of this, you know, we're getting from these people that are interpreting this language. That's essentially a dead language. No one can even speak it. So how much fucker is involved in that? I don't know. I mean, I'm a moron. I'm not a religious scholar. I'm not a linguist. I don't really understand this stuff.
But I do know that the Epic of Gilgamesh, which is also Sumerian tale, shares a lot of similarities with the Bible, including the similarities between the flood stories, the origin stories. You know, there's just a lot of weirdness to that stuff.
But the fact that these people had this story of the Anunnaki and the Anunnaki in according to situation, that the literal translation is those from heaven to earth came and that they had come here and that they had, you know, done some. And this is his interpretation. They had done.
And by the way, there's a website called Cichon is Wrong Dotcom.
And you can go there. And this is another scholar of Sumerian history that refutes all of his claims. Who's right? Who's wrong? I don't know.
But it's it's really weird, just that the stuff that you can't get away from is really weird. And that's the solar system. The fact that they had a detailed map of the solar system, again, you're talking about when I say detailed, they scrawled it on clay tablets 6000 years ago. But clearly, the centers, the sun, it even looks like the sun. It's much larger than anything else. The sun is a million times larger than Earth and it's just this big thing.
And then you see all these things around it that are supposedly representative of Jupiter, Neptune, Venus. It really does look like Mars, Earth like it really does look like this is they're drawing on clay of the solar system. Like, how the fuck did they do that? What were they doing?
Yeah, I know it's fascinating. And I think it's certainly worth, you know, wherever we fall on these debates. Yeah. And it's certainly worth talking about. Right. And it's worth investigating.
And when I when I started working with with these doomsday preppers I had, I took a lot of heat from some of my my friends and academia. What they were saying. Well, you know, they're right wingers. They've got disgusting political views. They're racist, they're misogynist. They're they're buying into conspiracy theories. Why would you give them airtime?
Basically, let me stop right there. Why would you generalize an entire group of weirdos? Well, exactly that. That's so crazy. Exactly.
And what do you think that is, though? What is the the motivation to do that?
Well, it's it's it's it's people trivializing, right? It's it's part of this partisan divide that we're experiencing academic particularly in our country.
Yeah. Yeah. Or right and left or whatever. Whatever binary you want to pick. Yeah. And and you know, I mean we could go over the reasons why we've ended up in this situation, but we are you know, we're running headlong into into a very partisan age.
Yeah. And, you know, I feel like the solution to that is actually, you know, it's going and spending time with people that you disagree with. Right. It's extending some empathy. And it's not necessarily about giving people voice, but it is about giving people space and time. Yeah, right.
And so I have to be honest, you know, a lot of these preppers I hung out with, it was it was hard to hang out with them, you know? So this is one of the guys, you know, did this thing where every time we were meeting, he would he would rate women as they walked by. She's a seven. She's a nine. She's you know, and it was it was really hard not to interject and say, man, she grocery shopping, leave her alone.
You know, the conspiracy theories were constant. But there's also a kind of we can think about about like people who are prepping on the everyday, like, you know, the person who just cares about taking care of themselves and their family and maybe they're interested in building community. Right. But then there are the people who are selling the antidote to their fears. In the book. I call these people the dread merchants, the people who are going to sell you the bunker.
You know, for Jim Baker and his. Oh, yeah. Jim Banks food and his survival water and how amazing those buckets of food that you could use as the base of a table, that whole video. I love those.
And he talks about using them as porta johns and yeah, he sells the Bible buckets as well. Have you ever have buckets bucket the Bible bucket, just a bucket full of Bibles. You know, just just in case you need more than one Bible.
I know. Yeah, well, maybe you got a big family, maybe go on your Old Testament of shit.
It's really weird. Have you ever seen the the Vich burger remixes of the gym? Yes, I have. Oh, man. They are so much fun. Yes. I got really addicted to those when I was working on this project. It was kind of my it became almost like a mantra, you know, happiness running in the background.
It's so strange that he was the guy that was attached to Jessica Horn controversy back in the 1980s. I mean, I remember that. Do you remember the Jim Baker like he had had an affair with this woman and it became, for whatever reason, this big news?
Well, like the same guy, because because then we we still expected people to be guided by their moral compass, you know? And everyone's a hypocrite now. Right.
Do you remember then there was Jimmy Swaggart got caught with a hooker and he was crying. Herve's do you remember that? You remember that that was good. Yeah. No one confesses anything anymore and no one in the Bible. Buckett.
Yes, I love that one. Oh oh. A bucket of Bibles. Why not? That's only 50 bucks. That's a good deal. How many how many Bibles you get? Twenty four. Why? I think it's.
Should we get a bucket of Bibles? I feel like we should have one. Can't get one. I feel like we should have one.
I don't want to feed the beast but you should, you should get one. If he gets fifty bucks from me, what the fuck did we did. At least a table. A table worth. Right. A table is worth a bible.
Six buckets. Can you get how many buckets. Makes a table.
But shouldn't we get the food. We should just get the bibles. One bucket of bibles and five buckets of food.
But is fucking.
I love watching him feed the audience with the jet from the giant trough. You can get real good freeze dried food that'll last forever.
Yeah. Oh yeah. His bullshit.
Yeah. Oh so what the fuck. Creamy potato soup. Oh my God. Look at that slop. Yeah. Yeah. And and they do a big thing of rice and then they and they mix it all together. Bucket of slop is poured on top of Google Peak.
This is my friend Chad Méndez has a really delicious company that they make actual I think it is it Freeze-Dried.
I think his stuff is freeze dried or dehydrated. I'm not sure. But people are doing it now, right?
Yeah, people are doing it now where you can keep this stuff forever.
This is my buddy Chadds stuff. This is really good for you. It's actually delicious and healthy.
And he's doing Mylar bags, tea. That's that's much better than doing bucket. Yes.
And he's Chad is a former UFC fighter who's a great guy, who's actually a hunter. And he makes everything organic and really healthy. And and when you read the Constitution, it actually tastes good. So you don't have to buy the gym bag or bullshit. You can actually buy the check this out.
I went to this I went to a community and just outside of Dallas, and they were this is a budding pepper community. And they had built this this 50 foot fountain ringed by the four horsemen of the apocalypse. Oh, Christ. I mean, it's like in a you know, in a rural county, in a town with like 300 people, you know, they bought all this land. It's like it was a square mile of land. And it had these these sort of green lagoons in there that were dredged out for for grazing cows at some point.
And they were going to revitalize these into these kind of like crystal blue lagoons with white beach sand. And they were going to build a bunker community in there called Trident Lakes. So the the lakes or the the blue lagoons.
And he told me that they're they're plan. And was to do a kind of outer perimeter wall around this that was going to be a giant berm around shipping containers, so essentially the wall would be hollow. And he said he was going to fill it with buckets of food and whatever.
And I just I kept imagining, you know, Jim Baker's Bible buckets just lined up down the walls of this thing, you know, to keep intruders out just like a 12 foot high wall of Bible buckets.
But I they had this this ex Navy SEAL working for them. And I'm waiting to meet with the CEO who's like, he's kept me there for about three days, you know, trying to trying to interview this guy. And in the meantime, they put me on the phone with this ex Navy SEAL and he's going to go over their security plan with me. So he tells me about the wall and then they're going to put up a chain link fence with barbed wire and they're going to have dogs and CCTV cameras and they've got a kind of no man's land between the the fence and the shipping containers.
Right. And he told me, you know, as a geographer, you've got to understand. You've got to control the geo space. You know, the geo space.
Yes. I don't know, man. I guess it's just space. You know, you've got to have control of it.
But he said, don't you love when people use extra words? I know. But then but then he started going down this rabbit hole where he's like, you know. We did some we did some Googling, oh, there's there's Muslim groups in Texas. Oh, my goodness. And I was like, oh, OK. And and he goes and, you know. It's not just Muslim groups, it's not just Black Lives Matter. There's white nationalists, there's people we don't like any of those extremist views.
And I'm thinking, well, this is this is kind of extreme, like what you guys are planning here.
We don't like any extremists.
We don't like white nationalist. That's hilarious.
Yeah, I met I met some really interesting people on this project. You know, there were there were people who were kind of on the deep end of things. I met this one. I met one guy in Kansas.
I'm sure I'm sure a lot of your your listeners will have run into this place, a survival condo in Kansas.
Oh, I never heard of it, dude. It's awesome. So they're so there I a condo survival condos in actually a condo. It's a condo.
So that one condo, this guy listen to this, this guy. So there's there's two kinds of nuclear missile silos from the Cold War that are in the Midwest. The first kind is the kind of horizontal one where they would lift the missile up to fire it. And then the later ones they built, the Atlas F silos are vertical, so they're 200 feet deep. And they had a, you know, nuclear tipped ICBM and potential ballistic missile around it.
Yeah, so so I mean, a home with a price tag of two million. Oh, my God. Well, million bucks. So it's it's one and a half million for a half floor inside this thing or three million for a full floor.
But this dude, this guy converted the entire missile silo into a subterranean condo complex.
So those are like LCD screens that make it look like you're outside. Yeah. Oh, my God. That's so not so. And what he told me were.
Hold on. Oh, he's got a pool. Yeah, he's got a pool with a waterfall beach. Actually, it's pretty dope. There's a rock wall. It's fantastic theater. Yeah.
Pool table rocks we watched from there. Wow.
What is that. That's where they melt the bodies.
That's where they're raising raising fish and they're tilapia. They're. Oh my goodness. Yeah. They've got an FDA certified growing facility in there.
Dongtan went to one of these places when I was telling you I did that television show. We went to the CDC. Duncan met with these people. I don't know if it was this group, but it was real similar. Penthouse was the penthouse. That's where Drake lives. Right?
He's going to some ballers probably have some sort of crazy setup up there. So get this.
The guy, he's he bought this. That's pretty nice. He bought this thing for three hundred thousand dollars, the missile silo as he solemnis heat. Yeah. And he dumped, I think ten million, four and a half million Cheesus. That's the part that's fat though.
That's a fat house. Would you live there. Yeah, totally.
If you did, would you have like a velvet robe and invite people over with a with a like a Kvasir and a snifter.
Come on, sit there and smoke my pipe on top of my Bible bars. Don't you want cigars in a place like that? You're a baller. You have time for a fucking cigar. Cigars, you have a pipe or other pipes you have to relight.
It's annoying. You're a mover and shaker. You're in a condo that's four and a half million dollars under the ground protecting protecting you from bombs.
Well, so I. So I'm down there like we're a hundred feet underground. How they get their air and I'm inside. He's he's got redundant filtration systems pulling air from the outside.
I mean, pulling air with a mechanism like he's got nuclear, biological and chemical air filtration systems. He's also got a volcanic ash scrubber. So if the caldera does blow, he can actually scrub the ash out. Come on. Yeah, no, serious. So Larry Hall told me that the guy who built this, Larry Hall, told me they could stay in there for five years.
But then you go down with Larry for five years smelling as far as he doesn't and his stupid jokes.
He does have a condo in there, does he not going to escape four and a half million bucks. And where is this again exactly? Dude, it's in the middle of Kansas. It's in the middle of a bunch of cornfields. There's nothing out there at all.
I have a buddy who lives in Iowa right now, and I'm trying to get him to move. I mean, there's issues out there around. Yeah.
I mean, one of the problems is how do you get to it? Right. You're going to have to I mean, like, yeah, well, weeks. But it depends on what kind of disaster you've got.
Right. I'm saying. Right. Yeah. He's got a if you buy into one of his packages, he's got to like SWAT style bulletproof vehicle. Oh. Pick you up.
You know, that's great. When you're hanging out with Larry in a bulletproof vehicle, you don't have to thank him for saving your life.
You know what I asked? I asked him about the security guards. Right, because he's got these camouflage security guards with arms standing at the gates and, you know, they roll the gate open when you get there and they go through. And I said, do what keeps the security guards here after the Caldara blows or, you know, whatever.
And, you know, I asked if they had space in the bunker and they didn't. So, I mean, I guess you just lose your exterior security when they don't have a fucking security condo.
Larry, stop being such a greedy fuck.
He needs someone like you around to, like, give him, like, sort of a peripheral view or an objective view, rather, of the outside, like, hey, Larry, you're missing this. You go get a hole in your theory.
So in my in my previous life, the security people were like a shitty fucking action movie with these people that's out there in the. TARP money, Adam, look at them close in on that guy in the middle with the black vest, that's fucking Adam Curry. OK, that's Adam. Is that Adam Curry?
That's The Godfather he says he's going to do is his podcast No Agenda from the Condo?
That's what he's doing.
Some pretty sweet truck. There are sweet. Yeah. It's not going to lock the truck for the real deal here. Those are pretty dope.
I went to another place in Utah called Plan B Supply. And there this is all they do is they build these kind of bulletproof armored four wheel drives, sometimes six wheel drive trucks, their crazy rigs. So they buy them. A lot of them they buy from the government. You know, the government retires equipment and they'll just buy, you know, 30 Humvees or whatever and have them delivered to the shop and then they'll put bulletproof plating on them.
Yeah, they toonami that.
Yeah, these guys are super cool.
How little does your dick have to be before that becomes an option? Oh, that looks dope though.
But so what they told me is they said you're never going to get to the bunker in a serious event. Right. So what you need is the vehicle needs to be your bunker. That one right there. You're never going to get to the bunker.
Yeah, no, they said just turn the vehicle into your bunker. So I drove that one there.
Maybe you don't want to live. You ever thought about that? Yeah, this is what I say. If there's an asteroid impact, I want to hit me in the fucking face. I really do. I don't want to do this, man.
You know, I watched that movie. What does that movie with Viggo Mortensen, The Road. I watched that for five minutes when he was teaching his kid to shoot himself in the mouth. Mike, check. I have kids. I'm not doing this.
I had a couple of preppers. Tell me, you know how you prep. Depends on what you're prepping for. Right. And a lot of them told me if we're talking about an extinction level event, the Caldara nuclear war, whatever. Right. They just would run into it. You know, like there's probably yeah. There's no point in trying to survive that. Yeah, that's the move. Yeah. They're thinking more about, you know, you've got to restart evolution.
That's what it is. Whatever's underground moles and shit, they just have to start all over again, you know.
Well, yeah. I mean things that shrews. That's where we came from, right. Yeah. Things that were underground survived previous catastrophes.
That does look dope though. You know what you like to do. If you ever got divorced and you just were like seven years old and you had some money in the bank and you like to do ecstasy, you take that to Burning Man.
Oh yeah. Yeah. Cool. Yeah. Now we're talking. Yeah, yeah. We need one of those. You pick people up and you bug out.
We need an Airstream, right. We need a dope like an Airstream Airstream. Pull it with a get you get a raptor pull. Pull the Airstream. Yeah I like it. Anyway those guys are doing well. They're working overtime.
Are they though. We want to hang out with them. They're pretty cool actually.
They're, they're, they're Mormons. You know what. They know what they told me. So I asked them what you know what what is the plan to escape the disaster when it hits in this vehicle? Like lay out the logistics for me. And they said, oh, no, you misunderstand. We're we're not building these vehicles to escape the disaster. We're building these vehicles to assist. And actually, they've got a they call it a disaster relief crew.
And they've been going into disasters like I think it was Hurricane Harvey. They actually drove the vehicles down and they were they were rescuing people from the floodwaters. And they told me a couple of stories about, you know, people who were waiting for FEMA to show up, basically waiting for FEMA to get their act together. And Plan B went down there with their vehicles and essentially just drove past them as FEMA saying, you know, you're not welcome here.
We've got it under control. And they just drove past them and rescued people and got him out of there.
That's awesome. Yeah, it's pretty cool. I mean, you know, they probably have some ulterior motives there as Mormons. You know, maybe they're thinking, hey, if we're the ones that rescue these people, I mean, certainly their aid programs are aimed at conversion, right? Sure. You know, if you send all of this food, I mean, you know, missionaries. Yeah, they're missionaries. Yeah. So so, yeah, I started to think of these as risky rigs with missionary zeal.
You know, you're building these the kind of you know, you feel like Mormons.
You could someone could come in, someone who's, like, very influential and logical, could come in and talk to Mormons and go listen. Like, if this shit hits the fan and you're around a lot of Mormons, you go, listen, you guys got a lot of things right? A lot of things. You're the nicest cult members ever like. Mormons are so nice. I live next to a Mormon for ten years. He was so nice.
He was a great guy. But out of his fucking mind, you know, he was out of his fucking mind, he really believed that Joseph Smith found golden tablets that contained the lost work of Jesus.
But like as a human. Wonderful. There's some of the nicest 100 percent members we all believe weird shit, you know, but that's the weirdest shit.
I know it is because the problem is they got they know who the guy was. It's like L. Ron Hubbard and Scientology. You know who the guy is. We're not talking about it's not a mythology.
Right? It's not talking about like like some scrolls they found in Kumaran and Clay clay jars. No, this isn't the Dead Sea Scrolls. This is a fucking book written by a liar who's 14, who's a liar. And they caught him lying.
And he's like the angels came and took it away. That's what he said. Like when you read the Joseph Smith story and then he was murdered because he was a piece of shit. Like, it's a crazy story. The Joseph Smith story is he felt he had a seer stone and only he could read it like it is like a 14 year old's lie.
And the fact that it it's prevalent today in 2020, not only that, that there's literally gigantic groups of them that live in Mexico. So they could still have 10 wives, which is nuts. And that Mitt Romney, a guy who fucking ran for president, his family comes from that. Mitt Romney's dad could run for president because he was born in Mexico. Do you know that?
No. You know that Mitt Romney's whole tribe is from the people who escaped America back in the fucking wagon train days because they told me, hey, you can't have 10 wives, asshole.
Like, well, we're going to just go over here because Mexico was it was not that different to be in Mexico or America back when there was no cars or buildings. You know, I mean, like you have a house over there, you have a house over here, you have a house over there. You could have your eight wives. So they stayed over there. And then the industrial revolution kicked in and buildings and electricity and air travel. And these motherfuckers are still stuck in Mexico.
Now, I'm sure you you know the story about those the groups of Mormons down there that had a run in with the cartel and the families are murdered and the children and wives. That's what that is. Those are the those are the Mormons that fucking Mitt Romney came from.
Well, you know, when I actually looked back at the history of Mormons and prepping because, I mean, they're the most prepared people on Earth, there's no doubt about it. Did they have massive stockpiles? And as you say, like when I went I mean, a lot of this a lot of the work that I did for this book was really difficult to get access to these places. Like preppers don't want to talk about what they're doing. Right.
But when I went to Salt Lake City, they were like, come on in.
You know, they want to bring people into the phone. And they wanted me to volunteer at their factories.
And the opposite of Jews, like Jews, make it really hard to join Mormons like you can join any time you want to. Come on in right now, we'll knock on your door.
Yeah, no, they brought me into the factory and they were showing me all the the 25 year cans of, you know, oats and spaghetti bites and, you know, all this stuff, black flour that they're producing. And they were like, you can volunteer any time.
That's why they have so many wives. But preppers. Yeah, well, there was one you have eight more laying around. But I went to go.
I went I went to a conference in Salt Lake City and there was this guy there, Dave Jones, who was giving a talk about employees. And he says, you know, just out of curiosity, how many of you people have basements, like 80 percent of the audience empty?
That's actually an electromagnetic pulse, right?
That would wipe out the power grid. Yeah. So he was doing kind of a workshop on how you could, like, turn your basement into a Faraday cage that would protect it from the amp. And I swear, like eighty percent of the audience had basements because they're Mormons and they're and they've got food storage down there.
So then I started doing research on this, and it turns out that there was a there was a guy called Ezra Taft Benson. And during at sort of the height of the Cold War or the beginning of the Cold War, that was he served on the the quorum of the Twelve Apostles. So he's like he was high up in the Mormon Church, but he also worked for the Eisenhower administration.
And he was he was advising the president on how to prepare for nuclear war.
And so he was he was, you know, one of the people pouring honey in the president's ear about like, you've got to have fallout shelters. You've got to have food preparation.
So all of those Cold War shelters, you know, you think back to to the Civil Defense Administration and the construction of all the shelters and stocking them with those disgusting biscuits and stuff. A lot of that actually came from the Mormon Church. So there's a long history of them being wrapped up with the government on this.
Have you ever seen the television show The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt? Now, it's fucking hilarious.
It's a Tina Fey produced it. It's a really, really funny show that's on Netflix, but it's based on a girl and her friends that were kidnapped into an underground bunker call. And she lived in this cult for fifteen years and then they rescued her. And now she has to exist in modern society in New York City.
It's really, really funny. All right, I'm in. But it's based on that. I mean, they're in a bunker and they think the end. They think the world above them is gone. And, you know, they're living with this crazy guy.
Who is what the fuck is his name? Ham, such as named Jon Hamm. Yeah, he's the main guy, he's the main cult leader guy.
So there's there's a there's a science fiction novel by this guy who how he will ever read that? No.
So this it's kind of a similar plot where these people are born inside of a silo that's very much like Larry Hall silo. It actually freaked me out when I read this thing and they wake up in there and they, you know, their whole lives exist within here. And there's a kind of social hierarchy, you know, like on the mechanical levels. You've got people doing grunt work. But at the top of this silo, there's there are these screens that are showing you the outside.
Right. And of course, what you see is a sort of blast stricken landscape and red sand. And, you know, I mean, it's impossible. You know, it's the post apocalyptic world out there. And, of course, people after a while, you start having discussions about, you know, how do we know that that's a window? Like, what if it's, you know what I mean?
Like, because it's cameras that are filming from outside and they're projecting it onto the window.
And when I was when I was down there with Larry Hall in the survival condo, he you know, he turned on the the quote unquote windows. And we're looking at the security guard standing out there. And I can see my rental car and I see his truck and I'm like, OK. And then he says, oh, you know, most people want to see the outside, but, you know, I can I can show you like a beach in San Francisco or whatever, like he's just flipping through these feeds, right.
That are your reality.
So it could be like Terminator. She show you a scene from Terminator, but you have no idea whether what you're seeing is real. And so and so he flips back to more or less. Thank you.
So he flips back to that feed of the security guard standing there. And I'm thinking to myself, here's a chair, his brain.
And I'm thinking to myself, what if that is a recording of when I got here? Right. And I haven't I have no idea whether that's a live feed. So he I mean, imagine the power that this man wields with the 70 of the 57 people that have space in the bunker. Right. That once he shuts the blast door, he could tell him absolutely anything but literally the plot of Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. Well, it's real.
And so here's here's the really weird thing. I met Hugh Howie, the guy that wrote that book, War. He was like, he's actually sailing around the world right now.
He's a fucking awesome guy. You should have him on the podcast. It sounds good, dude.
He's really fascinating. But he was in he was in the Sydney Harbor and I was living there. And I actually I just sent him a message on Twitter and I'm like, hey, I'm at the library right now. I think you're in the harbor. You know, you want to hang out. And he goes, Yeah, sure, I'll pick you up in the dinghy. Me and my girlfriend jump in there and he takes us out to his catamaran.
And, you know, the first thing I asked him, I said, look, I went to this this bunker in Kansas. And there's a remarkable similarity between this and the fiction that you wrote. And he said, I've never heard of it. Right.
I later email Larry Hall and I said, have you ever read this book? And he said, never heard of it. Turns out, though, that Hall was building the bunker at the same time that how he was writing the novel, who I was just one of those weird kind of moments.
Your life is, you know, is that kind of morphic resonance? Yeah, yeah. Yeah. The the collective consciousness. Yeah.
That's that thing where, like, if a rat learns a maze on one side of the planet, other rats on the other side of the planet can learn quicker. Yeah.
And I mean, it's kind of concerning in the context of prepping. Yeah. If you've got a lot of people thinking about this way of thinking in this way, about about a post apocalyptic world and whether that's fiction or whether it's video games, whether it's novels or whether it's people actually building spaces, you know, the concern is that it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy. And that comes back to, you know, your question about, well, if you if you spend all this time prepping, you kind of you kind of want the disaster to happen.
Right. Like you want to you want to test your preps, especially as you get older and you want to be vindicated. Yeah.
If you're like seventy. Yeah. Can you fuckin hip's going. Yeah.
Let's let's get this party started. Exactly. Let's hit let's hit the reset button and see what happens next.
Well isn't that the problem with having a president. Who's that old too. Oh yeah. Yeah.
I mean yeah. Isn't the likelihood of, of them, you know, just hitting the button and starting the the, you know, fabled mutually assured destruction.
So everybody is worried about with Reagan, you know, and we should probably be equally concerned, especially if Trump gets a second term.
I mean, you start you start to become nihilistic in your old age and thinks you're on speed, right on speed and you're nihilistic.
And, yeah, it's I mean I mean, prepping also is something that starts to happen in middle age.
Right. Because you you become aware of your own mortality. Yes. When you're young, you're like, I'm invincible. I can do anything. And then at some point you're like, actually I need a bit of armor here because I'm I'm not I'm not able to do the things I was able to do before. And you can feel yourself declining.
I think you probably have a more comprehensive audit of the variabilities or the the variables or all the different things that are happening at the same time all over the world, all the different possibilities, all the different vulnerabilities that we all have.
There's so many things going on. Your own body, the coronavirus pandemic, other diseases that are still here, you know, there's a new swine flu that they're concerned with, it's emanating out of China. Perfect. All kinds of things can happen then. China hates us now. You know, we're all everyone's mad at each other. Iran hates us. I mean, North Korea is pretty pissed off to so much shit going on simultaneously and less natural disasters.
And it's hard to know whether. There are more disasters or whether there's more awareness of disasters, right, like does our awareness of all these things happening all the time in our obsession with knowing about them and ingesting all of that information constantly, like, you know, again, does it does it start to manifest because it becomes part of our consciousness like we think, yeah, the world is in constant chaos. These disasters are unfolding. And then, of course, they unfold because, you know, we're all thinking we're all expecting them.
Well, I think that's certainly the issue with social media and the interpretation of the world around us, because the only things that gain any traction are things that are bad.
You know, we have in many ways this ancient tribal mind that focuses on threats and the threats of imminent danger that are specific to where you're living or valid.
If you're if you're living in a small tribe and you know that there's another tribe that's about to attack, well, that's very dangerous. If you know the storm coming in, it's going to wipe out your island. That's very dangerous.
But if you're in the middle of fucking Kansas in your multimillion dollar bunker condo and some shit's going down in North Korea, how is it even affecting you? But if you're on Google, it's going to affect you.
If you look at your Google News feed every day, if you're on Twitter and you're reading about the riots in Portland, you're like, oh, my God, the world's ending. But then you're like it's like that old Bill Hicks bit. There is a Bill Hicks bit about CNN from I mean, this is like Bill Hicks wrote this. He did this in like the early 90s. He's like Ade's war pit bulls, like all these different things. He goes in, you open up your window, chirp, chirp, chirp, chirp.
Buell's Where the fuck is all this happening? Like Ted Cruz is or wasn't Ted Cruz, who's the guy who owns CNN?
Ted, the guy who owns the buffaloes, the fucking Jane Fonda's husband.
I know the fox. His name, man. How do we not know his name?
Oh, no, CNN has been. Yeah, Ted Turner. Ted Ted Turner. I was like, Ted Turner's making this shit up. Jane Fonda won't fuck him. And now he wants everybody to die because it was a great Hicks bit from the early early nineties.
But it's kind of the same. It's designed to take in the threats of seven billion people. The idea of the Internet, the idea of this this rapid and instantaneous distribution of information is we get all of the bad news first because you need the bad news.
You know, if you said if I came all over your house and I said, hey, man, what's going on? You say everything's good. I got a birthday cake. You know, we're celebrating. We got this cool craft beer. I got some friends coming over. Oh, and there's a bunch of guys that are plotting to murder us. Why don't you tell me that first the murderous. We got to get out of here. We can't we can't drink, but craft beer and eat the cake.
We got the picture that's that's localized. Right.
I mean, think about it in the context of the Cold War, right? Yeah. So the nuclear threat never manifested. I mean, we had some we had some nuclear emergencies at Three Mile Island and Chernobyl, probably the nuclear threat of attack.
It's a perfect example because it brought the world together in an instantaneous fashion, not instantaneous, but, you know, a couple of minutes or if they launched from Soviet Union, they launched nuclear weapons at us. How much time did we have? We had a couple of minutes. And so there was this threat. I mean, I'm fifty two. How old are you? How old am I now?
I don't even know. Thirty nine. Jesus Christ. When when I was in high school, we were really worried there was this constant threat of nuclear war with Russia. The Cold War was real and you lived through it.
So, you know, we would read stuff or we'd see something on the news and go to bed. And I remember being a kid like twelve, thirteen years old, thinking, oh, my God, we're going to go to war with Russia. They're going to blow us up. We watch those videos of the fucking experiments with the atomic bombs in the ocean, like we're going to die, we're going to die, we're going to go to war with Russia.
And this is going to be the end of humanity as we know. We know they already did it with Chernobyl. We were with Hiroshima and Nagasaki. There wasn't that long ago when I was in high school. That was thirty years ago. Like, that's not that long, you know.
Yeah, I get you. Did you ever see the that photo of the Bikini Atoll where they they do the nuclear explosion in the ocean and the battleship is being sucked into the mushroom cloud? Oh, my God, it's terrifying.
They didn't know what that was going to be like either. They thought those those battleships were far enough away. They would be OK. Yeah.
But, you know, imagine the collective psychological damage that did to everyone on the planet living with that everywhere. Yeah. You know, and we don't know whether having that fear instilled within us prevented the nuclear war from happening. Right? Yeah. I mean, that's that's the catch 22.
Well, I think we're in this stage as human beings where we have this incredible ability to send and receive information, but we haven't. Quite caught up yet in terms of our ability to manage that, like we we we have this insane, unprecedented ability to access and send information that's never existed like this before, whether it's and also for everybody. Right. You could you could make a YouTube video. You could have 400 fucking YouTube subscribers and make a YouTube video tonight that reaches millions of people.
For whatever reason. You send it to me, I go, holy shit. I send it to Jamie Jamieson's, to his friends. I put it up on Twitter. Some famous person puts it up on their Twitter, Twitter and boom, boom, boom, boom, boom.
Next thing you know, it's gigantic. It reaches the whole world. But we we don't have. An equivalent ability to manage that type of information. So it's this new thing, but we don't have the tools in terms of like this, the understanding and the psychological preparedness. We don't have the ability to go, OK, but let's let's let's look at this in terms let's have let's have a perspective that is that's honest to our environment. Let's have an objective view of this.
Let's have a balanced version of this information and let's look at it in terms of like how how we communicate with each other instead of going into full blown panic. Let's treat each individual person as a friend and a neighbor. And collectively, let's manage this, because that's what's not happening today. When you look at the riots in Portland or Seattle or any of these things, like what's not happening is the one on one communication of people care about each other was instead happening as this massive tribal outburst.
One tribe wants to take down the government and defund the police and to break into the courthouse and prove that they won. And the other tribe wants law and order and they're making each other and fucking launching bombs and spray paint and things.
And it's like there's very little real communication is a lot of screaming and shouting and a lot of tribal behavior.
But there's very little one on one recognition of each other's humanity.
No, I think you're right. And I think it's because we're all living with dread. Yeah. You know, that we're like we're just saturated with dread. You know, it's I was thinking a lot in this book about the differences between dread and anxiety. Right. Like, if you're anxious about something, it's specific, right? You're anxious about a particular thing. Right. Right. But if you if you if you feel dread, it's more rather than like an emotion.
It's more of an affect. Right. It's just kind of a sense of unease that you live with. And I think we're dreadful about so much right now that it's it's you know, we're experiencing a sort of collective psychotic break, you know? And so the the inevitable result of that is trivialisation, right? You're like, I need to find my community that I can hang with. It's going to protect me, you know, and we're going to come up with answers to solve this problem.
So the preppers are one manifestation of that, right? They're like, we're all going to move into our bunker community and we've got our guns, we've got our supplies. And, you know, we're going to ride this thing out. And then these riders are in other communities. They're like, we're going to burn this shit down and start over, you know?
And so that trivialisation is extremely problematic because as you know, you're right, the conversation we need to be having is a collective conversation about like what are the threats and how do we address them? Yeah, and there seems to be a breakdown in our ability to have those conversations. And I have a theory here. They'll try out on you.
OK, I think this actually goes back to the Cold War. Prior to the Cold War, we always had a sense that our government was there to protect us there. Our government would protect us. Right. But once we develop nuclear weapons, I mean, it was it was impossible to shelter everyone from this disaster, right? I mean, I think the the early estimates that were given to the Truman administration was that it would be like the GDP of the country for an entire year to build blast shelters for everyone.
Right. So instead of doing that, what we know now and this was a conspiracy theory in the past. Right. What we know now is that the government built bunkers for themselves, but not for us. Right. And a lot of the you know, if you if there's a through line there that if you move from the Cold War into like the age of survivalists. Right. Like the 80s, you know, when you had Ted, Ted Kaczynski, the Unabomber, right.
In his cabin, he's kind of like he stands as a kind of symbol of this, like lone wolf survivalist. Right? It's kind of sort of well, but, you know, anti-government, right. I mean, there are other examples. Boatwright's the guy who ran for president on the the I think he was on the libertarian ticket. He built a community called Almost Heaven where they were, you know, he called it a constitutional community where like they were going to stop paying taxes and go off grid.
They were going to become self-sustaining. Whatever.
What you can see with a lot of those survivalists is a sense of betrayal that's manifesting in them, wanting to break away from the government and build a new tribe. Right. Because they're like, if you can't protect us, we'll protect ourselves. Right. OK. And so now we get we get to today and we've got three point seven million Americans identify as preppers. Now, they self-identified as preppers. Right. And what you hear from a lot of them is this kind of what we now interpret as a kind of libertarian narrative.
It's like, well, I'm just going to take care of myself and my family. You know, it's like I'm just going out on my own. I don't I don't trust the government, not one percent.
It's basically in the neighborhood of one percent. One percent. Yeah, I mean, it's a it's a significant amount of people I hung out with. Probably I went to half a dozen countries, I interviewed maybe 100 people, and I was just I mean, I just got to the tip of this thing, you know?
I mean, we have the most. Oh, for sure.
Without a doubt. Without a doubt. But countries know that, too.
OK, but look, if you if you contrast this to Switzerland, for instance, where they they did build the bunkers for the entire population, really. Right. For 110 percent of the population just in case visitors are in town. Why think the whole country can go underground right now, right now. Still functional? Yeah, totally.
Well, you know, I don't know.
It's funny that they're neutral, you know, like I mean, when it's working.
But that's I mean, you know, but once you've once you've prepared yourself, you've built your defenses, you're able to do that because you're like, go ahead and attack. Good luck.
Yeah, we should have known from their knives. They're preparing for it with a knife, with scissors on it and a screwdriver.
What do you what are you planning?
Yeah, but North Korea is another example. I mean, that country is essentially underground. They have fleets of aircraft inside mountains. I mean, they got like it would actually be incredibly difficult to attack that country because after the Korean War, it was essentially flattened. Right. And they learned from that experience like we've got to go underground if we're going to survive the next war.
Do we have an accurate account of what they have?
No, not at all, really. But there's a lot of there's a there's a place here in California, an institute called the the Nautilus Institute. And they do a lot of that research where they're just like scrolling around on Google Earth and trying to figure out, you know, is that event Schaff to a bunker and can we estimate the size of that thing? And it's kind of fun to dig through their website because most of it was constructed precise out.
Is that what it is.
Yeah. Mhm. Yeah. But there are telltale signs of a bunker. Can you go Google Earth over North Korea. Parts of it I think. That's interesting. Yeah, I think parts of it you can look at ultimately the entire surface of the earth is going to be it's going to be mapped out, right? Yeah.
I've actually got a friend who's been he gave he gave a paper at a conference I hosted where he was talking about measuring gravity from space. And basically you could you can measure the mass or the density of subterranean infrastructures and essentially you could see inside the earth. And so he was actually developing a theory, a theory for spoofing the gravity measurements, you know, so like you could build a bunker to look like a subterranean river.
So you look at it from space and you're like, oh, no, that's a geological form structure. Yeah. Formation. But because obviously a bunker is pretty obvious.
You know, if you if you see a giant square hole, would it be possible to spoof it by doing something that would offset whatever signal that's giving off? Definitely, yeah.
I think he had he had three theories for spoofing and that was another one and the third one.
But do the. But the Earth is already Swiss cheese. There's so much stuff underground.
I mean, before before I worked with preppers, my previous project was working with urban explorers.
I spent ten years in London breaking into abandoned buildings, construction sites and subterranean infrastructure. And we started so we started by opening manholes and getting into the London sewer system, which is quite cool. It's, you know, 250 years old.
You open a manhole and you climb down a ladder and then you're suddenly in this this Victorian infrastructure where there's there's, I think, 318 million hand laid bricks right in these and these beautiful tunnels that stretch down their gravity fed. And that's how they're cleaned as well. And there are combined systems. So it's fresh water and sewage. How old these are 18, 18, 50s. So we went down there because a lot of these used to be subterranean rivers and we were curious like what they'll happen to the rivers.
Well, they were all turning to the sewers.
So I know the sewers are actually they're not as bad as they sound.
I mean, they're beautiful. They're beautiful poop streams. I've got I've got photos on my Flickr page and Instagram, whatever.
You can go see the sewers in London. That's my photo, actually.
So that is a sewer in London. How's the smell down there?
That's actually that's a sewer in Paris. Oh, but that is my photo. There's you. There's me climbing it.
What are you doing? Why are you doing that? Climbing a construction crane. That's terrifying. Do you have a harness on or anything now. Fuck bro, don't die.
Do this thing. So look at this thing right here. This is a this is a you know, remember the Concorde jets. This is a Concorde jet engine testing facility. And we found this giant abandoned factory where they're producing the Concorde engines and snuck in there. And they later turned that into a set for Stargate.
And we found like the gate for the Stargate really slid open. Yeah.
Oh, wow. So that's London. That's a London, sir. But that's a newer one. That's a sewer. Yeah.
Oh, that's well that's fine because I mean, does you have a T-shirt on says do epic shit.
Yeah. That's over Chicago. Wow, no, Detroit, some cool photography, thanks. What are you using for these photographs?
At the time I was shooting on a Canon five D Mark three, but you know, yeah, basically I had a big DSR. Now I've got a mirrorless camera, but they're all they're all tripod shots.
That's the Queen Mary. That's amazing. These are crazy pictures. Is this some in one of those books that you gave me? Yes.
Like, look, I gave you two books. I gave you Subterranean London and London Rising. And basically that's a span of 10 years from like 2008, 2018, something like that, where we were sneaking into all of these places. We were trespassing and taking photos. That was like.
So these urban explorers, they're interested in, like they see the city is kind of like an operating system, right? Like it's supposed to function in a certain way. And they were interested in disrupting that operating system and trying to sort of like get to the code behind the city. Like, we want to see the wires. We want to see the tunnels, we want to see the construction sites. We want to see how all this shit is functioning.
How is the sewage work? Yeah, exactly. When you flush your toilet, where does it go? Right. And we figured it out, you know, like I went underneath my own house and followed the pipe that came from my house into a sewer that went to an interceptor sewer that went to a pumping station. I walked the whole thing. It was super fascinating to actually figure out how it functioned. Right. So after ten years of doing this, I now have this map of London in my head that is in three dimensions.
Right. So underneath the sewers, you had utility tunnels. So gas, electricity, telecommunication, what is happening there?
Water. And that's that's me coming out of a manhole into into an electricity tunnel.
Oh yeah. That's the electricity tunnel under London. Yeah.
Well there's there's tons of them so you can just get in there and fucking chop out those wires if you want to do well you could do some damage.
Isn't that weird. It's really weird. Like someone could just leave a bomb there. Yeah, right.
And I what occurred to me over and over again is as we were sneaking in these places, that it was really easy. Yeah. And so we're again, we're all saturated by these narratives about terrorism. And people are out to get us and they're all in our cities and their sleeper cells and we're all in danger. And then, you know, we're going out like, you know, a bunch of 20 year olds with some with some keys that we bought on Amazon and just opening everything up and going into it.
Right. And it I don't know. It just it made me feel like I was being lied to.
When you talk to that wasn't what was promised.
When you talk to all these folks, how concerned are they about the power grid and how many of them believe that the future is going to be being autonomous, having some sort of autonomous power supply, whether it's wind or solar?
Well, that's that's a I mean, that's a strong narrative, right? That like the way we prep now, we couldn't have prepped ten years ago because technology is facilitating it. Right. We've got solar panels. We've got battery backup systems. You know, we've got ways of creating of going off grid, becoming self-sufficient that we didn't have before. A lot of preppers that I talked to are really concerned about a CME coronal mass ejection, a plasma burp from the sun, which happens.
That sends us it happens all the time. Yeah, the the northern lights. A borealis is. You know, coming from the sun, it's hitting the magnetic field around the earth and it's creating those lights. So in 1898, there was a there was an event called the Carrington event where there was a massive solar burp and this CME burned out telegraph lines in Canada and people in the Caribbean were seeing the borealis. Well, yeah, in New York City, apparently, people were reading the newspaper in the middle of the night by the lights that were in the sky.
So what what the preppers are telling me and actually what what I end up reading later in in both Ted Koppel's book Lights Out and also in this book by Toby Audit at the University of Oxford called The The Precipice, is that if we had a Carrington size event today, we'd be fucked. It would burn out all of our transformers. We could lose electricity, gas, pumps, ATMs, refrigeration, medical equipment and our vehicles. I mean, there's a long list of things that could get totally torched by one of these things.
And the most concerning of that list are the Transformers, because they take a couple of years to build. Yeah, they're really complicated. And, of course, like everything else, we've we've off shored their production.
So, you know, when when when we get hit with that CME and all the transformers are burned out and then we call China on what we telegraph them or what, you know, however we get in touch and we say, hey, we're going to need a 20000 transformers. And they say, well, actually, we kind of like you being in the dark ages over there. We might just not ship those.
Well, that's also medical supplies as well. When we found out how much of our medicine is actually being produced in China, that was terrifying. Yeah. Can you give us a lot of it you couldn't get in the beginning of the pandemic because of a supply chain problem?
But that's what I was talking about with, you know, we created coverts pathways, right? Right. Like, we are creating our own vulnerabilities. And this is something that we've always done since the advent of nuclear weapons. Right. Like we're we're creating these threats for ourselves.
And it's usually in the name of of economics where it's like, well, we have to make this more efficient. We're going to make it cheaper. We get offshore and we need to go the other way. And I think this is it's it's strangely one of the few things that Trump and Biden both agree on, right?
Yeah. The resistance of it is the worry that people are going to be xenophobic. Right. That's the resistance. The resistance is, hey, we should trade with these other communities and these other cultures and countries. But the reality is, if there's something that happens and we can't get a hold of anybody that's on the other side of the ocean, we need medicine. We need a lot of electronic supplies. Like how about the fact that we all have phones?
Everyone in this country has a phone. None of them are made here. That is crazy. It is crazy. It's I mean, we obviously have a good supply of them here. I mean, if the shit hit the fan, we probably hold up for a year or two. But how long would it take before we can manufacture our own cell phone here in the United States and be self-sustaining? Do we even have the minerals? Do we even have the essential minerals that you need to lithium ion all the shit that you need to make cell phones?
I mean, all the different coltan, all the all the all the different things that they need to make a lot of the electronics that we find essential for our daily lives. Do we have those here? Can we get that? We can even get them out of the ground. Was one of the things that we're doing in Afghanistan is extracting lithium and many valuable minerals. It's one of the things they're doing in the Congo right now as well. That's vises covered that Coltrane.
Right? Isn't that what it's called? A shit? They're literally it's.
Yeah, I seen those those those lines of miners, you know, going down into the pits and passing, dude buckets up.
What's fucked is they're doing it with sticks.
And a lot of places seem you're going from sticks, digging into the ground, pulling out these minerals, pulling all these elements, and then it goes into the most complicated electronics the world's ever known.
You're you're carrying these things around in your pocket. And if you could trace it back, that would be a fascinating documentary.
Like if someone even a short one, like a ten minute documentary from the moment a stick goes into the ground, breaks off the mineral where the mineral goes, you're taking these guys in Africa that essentially they're not slaves, but they don't have a lot of other options. I mean, they're kind of in a slavery like situation that those minerals go eventually they go to China, they get brought to these places like Foxconn, where they're manufactured into this, put it put into these cell phones in these buildings where these people are working 16, 17 hours a day.
Living in dormitories where it's the system is so fucked up, they have nets around the building to keep people from committing suicide because it's so common and then it goes from there to Tim Cook and he's doing this presentation smiling. And then it goes to like Palo Alto with these kids, like, oh, my God, do you have the iPhone 12 is amazing. The new zoom, the nighttime feature. And like this is this is where we are.
What does that oh, there is a documentary, Blood, Blood, Blood in the Mobile, 74 percent like this movie.
The other twenty six percent were shitting their pants. Film-Maker directly connects cell phone purchases to the civil war in the Congo through conflict minerals.
Congo minerals. Oh, my God. Ten years old. It's on YouTube, too.
Well, it's on YouTube, too. It's from Denmark. Blood in the mobile. Well, they go a lot of my ideas.
So they're not bad ideas, but they're already. But let's do. Don't you you let's have already been done. Let's go to the other end of it. Have have you ever been to Thirty Fifth Street in Manhattan. Yes. Where they're breaking down all the electronics. So there's, there's a on this one street, there's a whole bunch of warehouses that are sort of back to back where people are getting all this, all this stuff, TVs, cell phones, whatever, and they're taking it all apart and trying to get those those minerals out of right.
So it's like a kind of not recycling, but reuse of some of these things. Deconstructions. Yeah, I, I met this this amazing artist, James, both or a couple of years back, and he had this crazy idea, he said he said, I want to go to Thirty Fifth Street and just gather shit from the street and build a boat from it like, like whatever. He could just call, you know, and, and then he wanted to take it to the source of the Hudson at Lake Tear of the Clouds and paddled the boat back to Thirty Fifth Street and then put it in a dumpster.
And fly back to England, the dude is better hobby, he did it. Why would he do did it, dude? Always the time, he said. Well, you know, paddling. It was a you know, about engines. It was a it was a commentary and reuse and recycling and waste.
And I why would he put it in a dumpster after he's done it? A perfectly good boat.
It's true. Yeah. Does that have to be there. But I for it I went with him for the last week of the thing and it was fucking hilarious. He was just constantly sinking like at first year. At first we were trying to bail out his boat. We had like I was in the safety boat and we're going alongside him and I'm trying to, like, bail out his boat with a cup because everything everything that we were using had to be found.
So I, like, found this like broken Big Gulp cup from 7-Eleven. I was like trying to bail them. They couldn't seal it properly. Well, he he he tried, but it just he got tired, you know, he was paddling all day and then he would get out at night and then he had to find the shit to fix the boat might say to go find some kind of sealant or find a piece of Styrofoam to keep him floating or whatever it was over there.
Yeah. Oh no, that's not it.
That's that's I think I think that often is homemade boat from Red Hook. I think that was a previous time.
I think that was a previous iteration of the project. And then he was kind of kind of refined it. It's a weird project, man. Yeah. It was a really weird project. And what's even weirder is he decided to do it in the middle of winter.
So in the beginning he was like breaking through the ice at the source of the Hudson to get to get this homemade boat through the thing. But I kept like we had some hairy moments. And in that week, what's going on in that guy's personal life?
Well, now he has a kid and his partners. Like, you're never doing anything like that again.
Yeah, that seems like it's probably a distraction element. There is his actions. Yeah.
It's probably distracting himself from some other things, but I really admire his, you know, ability to take on that notion of kind of reuse and waste and what should be done with all of these materials. I mean, it's. Yeah, yeah.
Well, we certainly have an issue with that. I mean, we certainly have an issue with landfills. Our solution is stuff those things into the ground. And the real problem with landfills is, you know, we talk about the release of greenhouse gases into the environment and the negative effect it has.
One of the biggest sources of greenhouse gases is landfills that I mean, they're finding when they did this, they did like sort of a survey of like I forget how they did it, but they did it, I believe was a satellite where they looked at the earth from the sky and tried to say, OK, what where are these gases coming from and what's the primary source of these gases?
And they thought there would be they thought it would be cattle ranches, you know, that these cattle were giving off methane and they found a no, it's not. Doesn't even compare to landfills like landfills are just a disaster because it's all this biodegradable shit that's stacked on top of each other and it's just rotting.
So it's rotting in this one area, concentrated, and it just just goes up into the sky.
Yeah. We've got a family member that actually works. He he does environmental monitoring for landfills. And he yeah, he was telling me that they got a call at some point on this one landfill that that there was a it was it was smoking. And so he drives the landfill.
And sure enough, like all of the all of the crap at the bottom of the landfill that had been compressed to compressed over time, had turned into a liquid and then had turned into a gas. And it sort of ignited somehow. Yeah. And so there he had to inject something into the landfill to basically put out this subterranean fire. Right. And if I mean, if there's any better indication of how we fucked everything up, it's a it's a it's a subterranean fire.
Yeah. Well, waste is a is a great method of destruction. And it actually you can take that back to the Native Americans. They would do buffalo jumps, you know. Oh yeah. Jumps. Yeah. And when they would they would corral these buffalo and chase them off the side of a cliff and when they would land in these great big piles they were rock and then they would they would combust, they would just burst into flames. It's I don't understand the the whole mechanism behind it, but it's really common that they would find these buffalo jumps.
And because of the fact they were all rotting together in this great big pile, something would ignite and they would burst into flames.
And so a lot of these cliff sides where these buffalo jumps are scarred and charred with just blackened soot and everything from these buffalo just eventually catching on fire because, you know, they have no preservation back then other than drying it. And, you know, when you're talking about hundreds and hundreds of Buffalo. Really, there's not much they can do to preserve all the meat, so there's a tremendous amount of waste involved in this method of hunting.
Yes, but no, it's definitely a myth that, you know, Native Americans were at one with their environment and they weren't happy.
I mean, they were you know, when when you need to eat. Yeah. You're going to you're going to drive on our buffalo off a cliff, you know, and you might only use three of them.
But there's two ways of looking at that, though. There's you could say, oh, it's very wasteful. But also animals have to eat, too. Coyotes have to eat, bacteria has to eat it. Nothing really goes to waste.
Yeah. You think if coyotes couldn't figure out how to how to corral those buffalo off the cliff, they wouldn't do it because they certainly would.
But the thing is that it is wasteful in terms of the human being killing the animal. Do they use all that animal? No, they don't. But I think Native Americans looked at it very differently than we did. I think they had a greater understanding of this whole cycle of life. And even if you leave, if they shot a buffalo and they took whatever meat that they could carry and left, that the rest of it there, hundreds of pounds of meat, that meat would feed so many different animals, so many bacteria, it would eventually go into the ground and feed the soil.
It's only wasteful in terms of the direct relationship between the person that killed the buffalo and did they consume that buffalo. But any animal that gets killed in the wild does not go to waste.
If someone shoots a deer and they maybe they hit it and it only hits one long and this deer can go a mile and then dies and they can't find it well that they wasted that deer while the person who shot that deer does not get to eat that deer. That is a problem, but it's not a problem in terms of the wild. The wild will consume that deer 100 percent. There is no question whatsoever there is no waste. It will find a way to not only that, the soil will absorb it, animals will find it, crows will circle.
That's one of the ways people find carcasses is like birds circling over carcasses. You know, let's say you fall. If someone's looking for someone that, like, went missing, it's one of the things they look for. They look for buzzards or crows or birds flying in the air.
So these American Indians that did this in our eyes, they wasted all those animals. But in their eyes, probably not. They probably looked at it like we're staying alive.
And the the the great earth has a use for all this. It's going to figure out a way to make all this. It's going to feed something, yeah, that makes sense. Yeah, I think we just have this idea that, like, if you shoot an animal, you should eat that whole animal and you definitely should. But their their idea was this.
I mean, we have to think I mean, I got really, really obsessed with Native Americans over the last year and I read seven or eight books on them.
And the what the world was like before the European settlers came was this spectacular but incredibly brutal environment.
These tribes, what they did to each other was fucking horrific.
And there was no there was no quarter given. There was no surrender, no one ever surrendered. That's the thing about the tribes Indians that the Europeans couldn't understand.
There was they fought to the death because they knew that if they were captured in their world, if if a tribe was captured, they were tortured to death in the most horrific way.
So they knew that that was coming. And they wanted they gave no quarter and asked for no quarter. They fought to the death. And it was something that the the early American pioneers and soldiers found incredibly remarkable. They're like these people. There's no there's no give up in them at all.
Like they thought of these encounters as a fight to the death. Always either they retreated or they fought to the death. There was never surrender. There was no white flags. They didn't even understand the concept of it. Cannibalism was rampant. I mean, it was multiple tribes, different tribes all across the country.
Whether it was I mean, there's different different tribes. The Nez Perce had a history of this, a bunch of different tribes who hate each other.
They would claim they would kill other tribes and eat them. I mean, it was it wasn't what they primarily ate, but it wasn't uncommon.
And it was because there was a sense that if you ingested somebody's body, you would also ingest some of their power, right?
Yeah, a lot of craziness that there was one story about this guy who was in love with this woman and he killed her husband and Aitor and then married or killed her husband, ate him and then married her.
Well, I mean, it's interesting to think about, like, here's a thought experiment, right?
If we know that, we know that. That that war wasn't won by soldierly techniques, right? It was won by disease, some of it was.
But but they I mean, the up until the Comanche's, it was it was catastrophic for Native Americans.
Right. The disease that ravage all these communities. I mean, you can actually see it. There was something on the BBC recently that you can actually see a change in the climate based on how many people were exterminated, mostly by disease. Yeah, when when Europeans arrived in, it's like 90 percent in 90 percent of the population. Yeah. So, I mean, it's an interesting thought experiment to imagine what would have happened if the disease wasn't a factor.
Right. If that would that war have just raged on for, you know, forever, you know, how would they have carved out I mean, but I don't know.
There was really changed. It, though, was the Colt revolver and then the repeating rifle. Those two things changed it incredibly, because the barrier between Western settlers and conquering the West was the Comanche because they were the first tribe that really understood warfare on horseback, which is kind of ironic because they didn't like the horses were introduced into North America by the Europeans, but they used to be native to North America.
Horses were actually Irig. They originated in North America.
And then they were exterminated here. Yes. Yeah, they were.
We don't know why. We don't know what happened. And this is part of the hypothesis that goes along with the extinction event that happened somewhere around where these core samples indicate that there's asteroidal impacts. It's really fascinating stuff. And there's a great well, there's there's a bunch of great books on it. But there's a guy named Dan Flores who wrote about all these different he wrote a great book about the coyotes, too, called Coyote America. But he wrote about how all these these Native American horses were eventually they found their way to Europe, they found their way to Asia.
And so, like all the Mongols astep tribes, all the ones that the road horseback, those horses originated from Native America. But then they were exterminated here some way. They don't exactly know how, but then reintroduced by the Europeans, then the Native Americans are taking over the horses and figuring out how to do combat on horses.
And they figured out how to do it far better than the Europeans and independent of the European, independent of even the Asians, like the Mongols and the twelve hundreds had spectacular horse horse riding abilities and the ability to fight off horseback.
But Native Americans appear to have figured out how to do it independently because the people who introduced the horses here, the Europeans, didn't know how to do it. So they didn't know how to fight off horses.
They would get off their horse to shoot their musket, and the Native Americans would run up on them and fill them full of arrows because they figured out how to shoot literally an arrow a second. They had this spectacular technique of holding their arrows in their fingers so they would have their left hand where they were holding the bow and they would hold their arrows in their fingers. And just one after the other, they had like a fistful of arrows and just go one hour or two hours, three hours, four hours.
And they would just shoot like an arrow a second while these poor bastards from, you know, Spain or France were trying to pump their muskets and put a lead ball in there and they just fill them up full of arrows. It's really crazy shit.
Can you imagine the panic as you're trying to stop the ball? Yeah, just fucking then you know, they're going to scalp you, too.
So they killed they literally they couldn't get past the Comanches because the Comanches were the ones who figured out how to do this. And they were a nomadic, really primitive tribe with very little artwork, no songs, no stories. They only ate meat. They only they lived off of buffalo.
And they took over a giant chunk of the West all through Texas, Oklahoma. That was all the Comanche. And everyone was terrified of them. What's really crazy is Mexico set up. The Settlers is a fantastic book about it called Empire of the Summer Moon. But Mexico set up the settlers.
They said, Hey, my friend, come live over here. We'll give you plenty of land.
They wanted a buffer between them and the Comanche. So they allowed all these people to think it was OK to build these settlements. And they built these settlements and the Comanches slaughtered everybody. And then they had to figure it out like, holy fuck, this is a desert, a dangerous goddamn place, because they were used to these East Coast agrarian Native Americans, these these ones who, like, they had set up agriculture and they they didn't ride on horseback.
They didn't do battle on horseback. They did everything on foot. And the Comanche were doing everything off of horseback. And they have thousands of horses. And all of their wealth was determined by how many horses you had.
And so they were this incredibly warlike tribe that everyone was terrified of. All the other tribes are terrified of them.
And they dominated this one chunk of the country and no one could pass them. They literally couldn't get through them. It's amazing history.
Yeah, it's I mean, it's incredible to think about what we. What we never really perceive are all of the political factions, right, and the nuances and all the difficulties, because we tend to think about it in these kind of again, these binary terms. Right. It's like, oh, the settlers are coming in and they have opposition from Native Americans. But of course, they were all at war with each other and they had different alliances.
And, you know, things were shifting.
I mean, I think that's where the that's where the the archaeological archaeological record is really interesting because it starts to reveal these things. Yeah. But it also reveals more mystery. Right. Like like there are things that we dig up that we can't explain. Right. And there there's no oral history for.
Well, I'm thinking of I went to this site in in the in the Yucatan to loom.
Oh, have you been there? I've been in Yucatan. Yeah, I've been to Chichen Itza.
I'll call Foxo. Tulum is on the coast like, you know, just over from Chichen Itza. And what you find are these like incredibly elaborate structures that are built there.
But then at just at the end of this, whatever whatever this place was in this this Maya settlement, they started building this really Janki wall around the thing, you know, and it's like it doesn't it doesn't conform to everything else that's happening on that site. And we don't know. And these people disappeared. We don't know what happened to them, right, but one of the theories that I heard is that it was it was a virus, right?
That it was it was it was disease. Right. And if you don't know what it is, what do you do? You're like, well, it's something attacking us.
We're building a wall.
You know, these people showed up and we're not, you know, and so that's one interpretation.
But I thought I thought about this with the bunker builders to right that like all of these factions and nuances and people with different ideas about how to combat the dread that we're all feeling right now.
And then if you were like if you were an archaeologist in 100 years and you excavated some of these bunker sites, you would find these I mean, incredibly different sites. You know, places where people are growing, where they're building kind of off grid communities, places with sniper posts. And then you would find these subterranean condominiums and then you would find, you know, the the shipping containers filled with Bible buckets, whatever. Right. You'd have all these different iterations of people responding to the current situation.
And I guess that's like I always kind of held this in my mind as I was touring all of these doomsday communities. Right. Is that there's like there's a future interpretation of these that I'm elucidating now. Right. Because a lot of these communities don't like let people in.
You know, they don't want people telling these stories. Right.
So it did feel like I was writing through a historical moment. And and that's before the pandemic. Right? Like, I started this book in twenty seventeen. By the time the pandemic hit, I mean, some of the some of the quotes in the book were utterly prophetic. I mean, actually disturbing. I had I interviewed this guy in West Virginia at a place called Fortitude Ranch, Drew Miller. He's got a PhD from Harvard, super smart guy.
And his plan is that he's going to build a kind of a bunch of retreats around the country. And so you buy into the idea of fortitude rants like a timeshare. And then if a crisis hits, you can retreat to any of his sort of campuses, you know? And I sat down with him to have lunch at one point and he said to me, you know, what people don't understand is that we're overdue for a pandemic. And when I was editing the book, I so I had forgotten this quote, right, and I saw it again and I went, Oh, shit.
And then I met this other woman in Tennessee that runs a survivalist store out there and they've got like space and in the in Smoky Mountains National Park, but they would retreat to either where they're they're planting secret groves in the forests out there so they can retreat to their fruit trees if if things go wrong and not so secret now.
Well, yeah, she and she and she told me, I know all the all the park rangers can be out there. The hell is that orange tree, you know?
But she told me at one point, she said, you know, 20/20 is going to be a wild ride. Buckle up.
Wow. You know what? I kept reading these quotes as I was editing the book. I was like, God, this is so weird. It feels like I've never I've studied history. I've studied archeology. I've never had a sense of living through historical moment quite in this way. Right. A lot of this are experiencing this in the midst of the pandemic. Like we know people are going to be. I mean, if we still exist in 100 years, we're going to be writing about this and thinking about this and interpreting it in more ways than one.
Right? Yeah, but I mean. But imagine the remaining civil unrest. Oh, yeah. There's so much going on. And then the Pentagon saying they have recovered UFOs.
Oh, God, you read up. I read all that's terrifying. They've recovered Krafts in quotes not of this world yet. What.
Yeah, which is stock in that bank. That's where we're going next.
That is what we're going. I mean, I wonder if why they're saying that to us. I wonder if they're preparing us for some inevitable encounter and they want to give us like a slow drip of information to get us accustomed to the idea so that we don't go into full shock, because obviously this pandemic has thrown us into a lot of shock. George Floyds murder brought us into a higher level of shock, it appears, because of civil unrest in this demand for a change in our culture and the way we communicate with each other in the way law enforcement works and the way government works.
There's so much chaos right now and there's so much so much division then boehme aliens.
I mean, it just seems like the nuttiest fucking year of all time. Yeah.
I mean, we're all we were all sort of preparing for the election, but look at that quote.
And Popular Mechanics, Pentagon has off world vehicles not made on this earth. That is a quote from the Pentagon. That is fucking bananas. I spoke to Commander Fraser on this podcast, who was the the Air Force pilot. Air Force or Navy is Air Force pilot, that fighter pilot who chased this Tic-Tac UFO.
The weather was moving erratically the way it went from 60000 feet to one feet above of above the surface of the ocean in a second. They have no idea what the fuck it is, a U.S. Navy pilot, he came on the podcast and described it, this rock solid individual military man, lifelong, totally trustworthy, has no other history of crazy stories. This was this is they tracked it on their weapons systems. They they found this thing doing things that defy the laws of physics and their understanding of propulsion systems.
They like, what is this? And then the people in the Navy were saying, we've been seeing these things like every couple of weeks. We don't know what they are. So when they scrambled this jet and these these other jets came back to support him, they were all trying to decipher this. Like, what is this like? What what are we dealing with? And this was, what is it, 2007, when that happened for 2004.
So he's been, you know, holding onto this information, trying to figure it out for 16 years. And, you know, people kind of laughed and made fun of him, but there was no other stories like this from him.
And then there was some stories from the East Coast.
And then a couple of years ago, The New York Times released a story about these things, these credible accounts of UFOs. And now finally, the Pentagon's like, yep, I don't want to tell you.
We'll check this out. Larry Hall, the guy that was building that that underground condo in Kansas, he's now building a second one, by the way. I asked him how he made the decision to dump ten million dollars into this thing. Like what? You know, is that just a business plan? You know, did he did he model that out?
And he said, oh, no, he it turns out he used to be a a contractor for the Department of Defense and he was working on projects for them. And he said, I saw some things when I was working there. That made me very uncomfortable. And that's why I'm building the bunker, and I heard that from more than one prepa. I mean, there were a few there were a lot of people that I encountered who had worked for the government either directly or as contractors who had seen things that disturbed them that, you know, caused them to start prepping.
And so, you know, I did want I mean, at the beginning of this project, it was like.
You know, it seemed like it just seemed interesting, culturally, culturally like that kind of a weird thing. And, you know, I want to get to know these people and know what makes them tick.
And by the end of it, I was severely disturbed, like, you know, because because they they do seem credible to me, you know, and it makes it forces you to reinterpret what they're doing as as rational. Right. You know, like these are I kept saying to people, these are these are rational people responding to an irrational world. Like the problem is not them and what they're doing. The problem is the context in which is driving them to.
Well, the problem is our interpretation of them. Right. The problem is this knee jerk reaction where we want to generalize and put people in this category.
Oh, you're a prop.. Oh, I know what you are. Well, you're not just a human being. You're not nuance. You're not a unique individual with your own ideas and life experiences, not your pepper puts you in that box.
Oh, you're a Trump supporter. Put you in that box, you know. Oh, you're. Oh, you think Biden should be president no matter what.
Let me put you in that box like there's there's things that we do with people because it's too hard to really have an open mind and not take into account all the various possibilities of behavior and ideas that you could expect from a person.
So it's this really normal thing that we do when we generalize and we like to do that. It makes the world simpler for us, makes it we like things binary one or zero. We like good or bad. We like that proper.
Oh, look at this dummy. Meanwhile, they're right about a lot of shit.
And if that guy really did work for the Department of Defense and really did see some things, and then when it comes to UFOs like Bob Lazaar, who's another guy who's been on this podcast, he's a guy that in 1989 did the story with George Noory in Las Vegas, where it was an investigative report. We said, listen, I work for area for I was back engineering UFOs. I was a nuclear physicist for Los Alamos Labs, and they hired me to go to Nevada.
They flew me out to the middle of the fucking desert to work on something that's not from this planet. And they were like, oh, you're so crazy. That's so crazy. That's so ridiculous. Meanwhile, 30 years later, babies are just put up a post on his Instagram, go to United Nuclear, Bob his Instagram.
This guy has been dealing with this story and this this ridiculous story for 30 plus years and people said he's crazy, like the government does not have UFOs. They don't have something that came from another planet. That's crazy. How would you keep that a secret? But this guy has been talking about it forever. There he is right there. Finally, after waiting 30 years, the government admits to possessing alien craft. Time will tell what happens next. Personally, I doubt that will disclose much more and wouldn't be surprised if they issue a correction and say their statement was an error.
In any case, I never thought I'd see this day. Thanks so much to all of you that supported me throughout these years. On another note, this is the only social media account I have no Facebook, Twitter, etc. There apparently lots of impostors out there. So he's United Nuclear Bob on Instagram. And I went to dinner with him and then I had him on my podcast to talk to him for three hours and I found him eerily credible.
His story has never changed. Over 30 years, I've been telling the exact same story.
I can't I can't say that I know things that have happened for true, that 100 percent no no lies at all, that I was a part of that I can't tell you 30 years ago. I can't I'm not good at. I'll fuck it up. Go. Oh, yeah. Mike said that. Oh yeah. I forgot that happened. First I would fuck up the order of events.
He's been insanely consistent and he's legitimately really intelligent.
Like when you talk to him, he's he's an absolute comprehensive understanding of science and of elements. And one of the things he talked about in 1989 was this thing called Element 115. That back then was really only theoretical. They didn't even know Element 113 or 115, rather, was real until 2013, 2013, a particle collider detected it. So they proved that it's an actual real thing. When he was talking about a stable version of Element 115 that they used to bend gravity and propel these vehicles.
He described how the Tic-Tac UFO that Frazier saw in 2014 worked. He said it would turn sideways and then jut off at insane rates of speed. That's exactly what Fraser said. That's what they have video of these things doing this. They have the tracking systems of these fighter jets trying to explain what these things are and why they move the way they move. Well, this guy's been talking about it since 1989. It's bonkers, man. It is bonkers and that the Pentagon comes out in 2020 and tells us that this is a real that they really have crafts that they've recovered that are not of this world.
That was their statement, like maybe they're fucking with us. Maybe they said that because they want to influence the election.
Maybe they said that because they want to take our our attention, maybe like, hey, what's the best way to stop all this fucking chaos and all this global unrest, all this civil unrest that you're seeing or people trying to burn down courthouses?
How about we tell them the aliens are coming?
Yeah, that's classic Orwell, right? Like you, you create the other over here and then and then everyone consolidates to confront that thing.
I would be lying if I said I understood any of how they operate or how they disseminate information or why they do it, why they do it in the order they do it. But if I was in charge, if I was Trump, I'd make a fucking press conference about the aliens. I tell everybody, please settle down there.
Come and baby. I mean, he did a thing was sun.
It's really weird. It's like one of those weird interview shows.
It's it's clunky. It's clunky in a few ways. His son interviewed him on YouTube and it's clunky because his son's not that good at it. And it's clunky because they have this strange relationship where, you know, his dad is the president and he clearly has a great reverence and respect for his dad. So there's not a there's not a balanced conversation. But when they're talking about UFOs, he he says, I've seen some very interesting things, but he wouldn't talk about it.
Hmm. Have you ever read The Black Swan? No. It's a great book by and I think his name's Talib. And he basically his theory is that human beings spend all of our time justifying things that have already happened and sort of explaining them away. But those things before they happened were totally unexpected.
So he calls them Black Swan events. Is this Nassim Taleb?
Yeah, that's right. OK, yeah. Yeah, I know who that guy is. Yes. Mathematician, right? Yeah, he's a mathematician. Yeah. Yeah.
So so he has a theory that, you know, we kind of unexpected events are inevitable. Right. When they happen we're all shocked by then. Q The pandemic for instance. Right. And then afterwards we say actually we knew this was coming. We can totally explain this. Yeah. And then we always make the mistake of preparing for the disaster that's already happened. Yeah. I mean, that's just human nature, right? As you think. Well, how do we how do we fix the thing we just dealt with.
Right. Rather than thinking about how do we how do we prepare for the impossible thing that's coming next?
I don't know.
I don't know how we get people to do that collectively or even push the government in that direction. You know, to think about the possibility of an MP in these transformers being burned out or to think about like what the social, political, economic, you know, fallout is from alien contact. I mean, how do you even you know, how do you even start to work through those things? And when you do, inevitably people say you're a conspiracy theorist, you're crazy.
You can't you can't talk about you can't go down that road.
Right. But what's the harm in just running the thought experiment? The harm is just modeling it out.
Well, people the people are scared of ridicule because they can be devastating to your career. I mean, if you're not self-sustaining, if you're not if you if you're not autonomous. Right. If you if you have some real connection to an institution and your reputation relies on the respect and trust of your peers and you say something that's really outside of the norm and you can just and if there's some sort of conflict and additional conflict regarding your work, they can just dismiss you based on that.
It's very dangerous.
It's very dangerous to say things if you have any other if you have a job where maybe you work for your university, but you don't have tenure, if you write for a newspaper and there's a lot of work people that also write for that newspaper and they're very critical of the way you dismiss certain things that are taken into it.
Just the part of the cultural Zygi guys today, it's real dangerous because in this day and age, everybody's fucking scared. Yeah.
And people will turn on you. And if they turn on you, it can be devastating to your career, you know, and sometimes people will say certain things that are controversial or that would be the end. That will be the end of all of their hard work.
And there's other people that relish in that they relish in dismissing you by one particular misstep or one one controversial perspective, whether it's about aliens or viruses or masks or the immune system or politics or anything or the fake news or whatever the fuck it is, it's like people are always looking to step on.
The other person is climbing up, it's crabs in a bucket instead of uniting and sort of working it out together and embracing the ethic of community and of understanding and of of compassion and companionship and the fact that we are we really we should be very rarely attacking and almost always trying to understand each individual perspective. And we don't do that right now. We're scared. There's just social media has put us into this weird position where it's so easy to attack, so easy to be attacked and so attractive to pile on.
And one of the reasons why people pylon is because you want to identify yourself as the tribe that's in the good on the right side, and therefore you stand up and jump in, jump into the fray when you see anybody stepping out of line, even if they're stepping out of line with something that will in history, in the future, point to like a an actual perspective that's pretty reasonable. And in the time, it's not in the time. Reasonable perspectives right now are very dangerous.
If they are not in the norm, if they're not what we consider to be. This is a conglomeration of opinions that you have to have and you have to project. And so there's a lot of people right now they're terrified because of these newfound tools and this newfound like this is this is the real downside of council culture, right?
It's there's a lot of people that will secretly talk to you and they'll say, look, I can't say this publicly, but I completely agree with you. And you mean very brave telling the truth. But I have to protect myself. I have family. I have this I have that my job at this. And then once I'm free, then I'm going to be honest. But right now, I can't I can't jump in. We're dealing with a lot of that right now.
No, you're absolutely right.
And I mean, I'm an academic. I deal with this and I'm based at University College Dublin. You know, I have to be careful about what I say. But at the same time, because I do ethnographic research, because, you know, from the Greek, I'm a culture writer. Right. Right. Like, I'm writing about other people's perspectives fundamentally. And that does act as an effective shield to be able to, you know, spend time with people to be empathetic to their views.
You know, anthropologists have a long history of this, of hanging out with people that are committing infanticide or murder or cannibalism or whatever, and saying, look, this is their culture. This is what's happening. You know, if you don't agree with it, that's fine. But, you know, I'm just I'm past documenting. I'm documenting and I'm passing on the information. And we can we can debate it in a different forum and.
You know, the work that I've done in the past, particularly with the urban explorers, that got me into a lot of trouble, I mean, I got arrested my all of the people that I worked with ended up getting arrested because the police got my fucking notes. And I mean, it was a it was a terrible how to please get your news, a terrible situation. Well, so we I was I was going out with these urban explorers into all of this subterranean infrastructure underneath London.
And after we went into those sewer systems, then we got into electricity tunnels, then we started getting into bunkers. So how illegal is this? These are like layers under the city.
So imagine there's like, you know, five layers under the city, right? So we we go from those sewers to the electricity tolan's to the infrastructural systems, to the bunkers. And then we started getting into what are called deep level systems. Right. And they're they're they're very similar to the bunkers that the U.S. government is building here that they called they called dummies deep underground military bases. Right. We started getting into like serious critical infrastructure, like at some point.
How easy was it to get into those? It took us years.
It took us years. There's quite a lot of research. But I mean, at some point we got into what are called the BTE deep level tunnels, British telecommunications, deep level tunnels. And we were like inside the telecommunications trunk for all of the United Kingdom, you know. And at this point, we're like, you know, 100 feet underground, 120 feet underground.
We were actually we were walking through this tunnel about, you know, about 100 feet underground. And one of the explorers I was with is like, there's a there's a manhole above us. I was like, what? What do you mean there's a manhole above us? You know, we're like, we're in the deepest level right now. And we pop this manhole in and a camera swivels, you know, and stares at us like, oh, God.
And then we realized we were into some some critical shit.
So was what we it was just it was just telecommunication hubs. Right. It's just like the trunk of all of the the the the infrastructure for fiber optics and phone lines.
And they just have an exposed manhole cover and a tunnel that you can get to did we wiggled through like we wiggled from tunnel to tunnel, like through tiny crevices. We were getting into like the deep underbelly of the city. I mean, it was not it was not easy to get to. But but here's the thing. At the same time, we had been cracking all of the the abandoned tube stations, metro stations in London. Right. So we took a we took a map of the tube from 1932 and we set a map from 2008 on top of it.
And what you see are a bunch of stations that are no longer on the map. Right. That's your first clue. So there were like 40 some then. Then we started doing research and we figured out that there's got to be at least 14 stations that still have like ticket offices or platforms. Like there's something there that you could find. So we started sneaking into the tube to go and find these places, like we would wait till the train stopped at 2:00 in the morning and then we would like climb up a bridge and get onto the tracks and we'd run through the tunnels and and we were finding these stations one after another.
Incredible time capsules, you know, where there were artifacts left behind, posters like we'd find tickets on the ground from 40, 40 years old, you know, I mean, really cool stuff.
Some of the a lot of these stations were were bombed out during World War Two. But finding these is like, again, this kind of like like here's the archaeologists in my right, like we were having this visceral connection to history. We're finding the stuff that was giving us like a real sense of being inside history in material terms.
So we're we're posting every time we crack one of these stations, we post it on our blogs like, oh, you know, we've cracked marklin, we've cracked down street, we've cracked whatever. And we're all excited about it. And and like the windows narrowing. And we we get we get towards the end of the 14 stations and we're starting to think, you know. Like, the cops are surely watching what we're doing right? The British transport police and kind of know where we're going to go next because there's only a few stations left.
So we stop posting stuff. And on Christmas of 2012, we cracked the last station underneath the British Museum. It's like there's all sorts of cool stories about like there was a there was a ghost in here. It's a haunted station, whatever. But we did it.
We never got caught. So for me, this is the end of the research project.
Is there a fear of being retroactively prosecuted for this stuff? We'll get we'll get there.
Oh, so I'm done with my research project. I've written my PhD. I published my first book, Explore Everything about all of our ah, I hadn't published the book yet actually.
And I, I fly to Cambodia to work on a totally different research project. Right. Like I'm switching gears, I'm going to go do something else. And I fly back from Cambodia via Singapore and the plane lands at Heathrow. And you know, the thing is a thing and you stand up and you get your bags and then nothing's happening and they say, can everyone please sit down again? I sit down, I look out the plane and there's cop cars everywhere.
And I'm like, oh, shit. You know, I came from Singapore.
Someone brought drugs. I don't know, there's a terrorist in the toilet. Like, I have no idea what's going on. And the cops get on the plane and they're like 42, 42.
Okay. Dr. Garrett. Yeah? You're coming with us. OK, so they cuffed me. They they have me, like, retrieve my bag from the baggage claim and they take me through through passport control in handcuffs and obviously the UK government's like, yeah, we'll go ahead and keep that passport. Thank you. So they eventually charge me with conspiracy to commit criminal damage. Now, what's weird about England is that trespass isn't a criminal offence. So you can't you can't charge people with trespass unless you're in very specific circumstances.
So they tried out this charge of conspiracy to commit criminal damage because it's it's about intention. It's a thought crime. Like if I text you and I'm like, hey, did you know the bar is closed right now because the covid, you want to break in and just, like, pour ourselves a beer and you're like, yeah, let's do it. Like, we've committed conspiracy to commit criminal damage, like we've committed to the crime. So anyway, we for years were dragged through the British legal system.
And I got trapped in the UK for three years.
Well, I was they kept my passport, dude. I was trapped there.
And here's where it gets really weird is that when the plane landed at Singapore, there was a journalist from GQ who was supposed to meet us because we were going to take him into some of this subterranean infrastructure and show him all these spaces. And he's like, you know, by the time I got out of jail, like 48 hours later, I had I had all these messages from, like, you asshole.
I came I showed up at the airport and you weren't there and whatever, you know.
And I finally find this guy and Matthew Power and and he's like, are you serious? Like you got? Because we had timed it to land at the same time. Yeah. He's like, you serious? You got arrested at that moment? And he said, What about your house? I said, I've no idea.
So we go to my house and we unlock the door with these keys that the police have given me because they took down my door with a battering ram. Right. And then, you know, like put some padlocks on there that they drilled into the the door in the doorframe. And I open it up in my apartment has just been ravaged. Right. Like stuff ever. The mattress flipped over. All the cupboards are torn apart. There's like pieces of the door all over the floor and underneath all of it, there was a job contract from the University of Oxford to do a postdoc after I said I just finished my PhD.
And the journalist from GQ is like, dude, I can go home right now. I've got this story.
I don't need to explore anything. I'm done. And how did it resolve? Well, the by the time we got to court, I mean, the prosecution was just in shambles. I mean, it was a total debacle because there was no evidence that we had broken anything, you know, because there are laws you could just trespass, which is in the law.
We just trespass.
Yeah, but they spent, you know, 300000 pounds, I don't know, 400000 dollars of taxpayer money to run this prosecution. So they were going to see it to the end. And essentially, you know, they got they they confiscated my computers, my hard drives, my notebooks. And that was that was the central component of the evidence that was used to prosecute everyone. So essentially, like, I just made a deal with them, I was like, look, I'll take a hit, you know, if you like, if everyone else can just get off, you know, I'll take the hit for it.
So I pled guilty to I think it was four counts of criminal damage, which included damage to his screw from a board that I had taken off and put back on to a vent shaft.
Oh, I know. Sliding, sliding open a window. Oh, that was aiding and abetting side. Opened a window for someone to crawl through. And it was just like a list of ridiculous things. But they didn't care because they just they needed there. They needed a win. They needed a win, you know, so I gave him that. But now I've got no I've got this criminal record in England.
So when you land, you get pulled aside.
If you go to I used to I actually filed a complaint with the government and, you know, they would like severely harass me. And then when I moved to Australia, I had the same problem. Like, they had put flags on my passport. And you filed a complaint and did it go through.
And I filed a complaint and they fixed it. They took the flags off the passport. Yeah. Oh. Essentially saying, like, you know, I did my thing, you know, like, why do I have to keep paying for this. Yeah. Over and over again.
So but it was really funny when I when they when they originally gave me my passport back. So I go to court and then, you know, the judge, it's like, Dr Gary, you're very naughty or whatever.
You take your passport back. They have wigs on. Yes. Yeah. The wigs are fantastic. Really. Yeah. They still do that.
Yeah they still do that. They're really good. That's real. Yeah. Yeah. The barristers all have their wigs and they carry them around like, like a cat you know, and then they have to put it on when they're to put it on to die.
It's fucking bonkers. But so I so they give me my passport back and I and the next day I was supposed to fly to Sydney to go speak at the Festival of Dangerous Ideas. I was the obvious speaker.
And I go to the airport and the the guy swipes it and he's like. Yeah, you don't want to use this. I was like, what what does it say, what is the screen saying? He's like, I can't I can't relay that, but you should probably go and gives him a passport back and then I should probably leave the country.
No, like, you should not get on a plane with this. Like, you're going to have a problem on the other side, you know, whatever he says. How else can you travel?
Well, exactly. So then so then I missed my flight and I had to go back. I had to go to the U.S. Embassy. And I'm like, you know, I've just tried to fly with my passport and it doesn't work. And the guy at the embassy swipes that. And he says, Oh, wow.
And then he and then he gets out a hole puncher and he goes right through my passport and he says, you shouldn't use that. And then like three hours later, they gave me another passport and I flew out the next day and the passports, the new ones just fine.
But then but then I started getting stopped again. So they like, I don't know, attack the flags on their later car. I mean, it was a real ordeal.
But you know the thing. I mean, it was it was it was traumatic for me, of course, of like stuck in a foreign country and, you know, like you get worried about your income. I was worried about being they did try to deport me at some point because once you have a criminal offense, they trying operate. So anyway, I beat that down.
Do they find you like what was the ultimate judgment? Yeah, it was I think it was 2000 pounds, about 3000 dollars.
I got fined. Um, not not too bad.
Not a big deal. I made some money off the book. If not, you're going to make some now.
You know, I did I made I made all the money that I made on my first book, explore everything went to my lawyers. So I have to say were phenomenal. Like they did a great job. But it was like every time I get a royalty check, I just signed it over to them, you know, and it did seem like karma.
It was like, well, I broke all this shit and then I wrote a book. And then the money went to the lawyers and the lawyers got me off and it all kind of worked out well.
Tell everybody again the names, the books. Let's sell some books for you here. Sweet, because the book really has some amazing images, particularly the underground shit.
Yeah. OK, so so the first book that is all about my time with the urban explorers and our trespasses into the underground and also into skyscrapers and abandoned buildings that was called Explore Everything. I wrote that in that was published in 2013 and that's what it is now or everything that's got the whole story of the court glass.
Bradley Garrett not to be confused with the giant person from Everybody Loves Raymond.
I will topple his Google rankings. I promise. You're getting me close.
Subterranean London. That's your second book? Yeah. Subterranean London is the second book. So that's those are those are all of our photographs over ten years.
Amazing photographs. Two, by the way, subterranean layers of London, just spectacular shit.
And then London Rising is the third book. I'll actually scroll up there, scroll up in the sea at the top there. That's us climbing into an abandoned tube station up left, this one right here. So we're like actually one. Yeah, that's climbing into the new Crossrail that this is so weird.
But all that stuff is open.
It's not not anymore. Kind of. Kind of. Do they do anything to tighten it down after your books.
They try. OK, we got we got really good at breaking into things. I mean, you know, this is this is a skill you build.
Bradley, thank you very much. Man. This is a lot of fun. We just went through three hours, if you can believe it. Are you serious? Yeah, it's 340. Well, the time warp in here, right? It's crazy, people always say that, like, what the fuck? That is so weird. Yeah, it was a fascinating conversation, man. Very thrilling. I really enjoyed it. Thank you very much. I was a lot.
Thanks for being here, man.
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