While many see it as a pastime exclusively reserved for the ultra-religious, and for paranoid eccentrics who wear tinfoil hats and have sheds full of canned food, preparing for doomsday is now a trend sweeping the super rich communities of New York, Silicon Valley, and beyond.
Larry Hall, CEO of The Survival Condo Project, spent nearly $20 million refurbishing a missile silo in Kansas to the standard of a luxury resort, selling on all 12 apartments for $3 million each. He is not alone in taking advantage of the ample business opportunities this craze provides, with similarly pimped out bunkers appearing all over the world, boasting luxuries such as pools, spas, theatres, games rooms, gyms, shooting ranges, climbing walls, and even indoor dog parks for those who can’t bear the thought of leaving their pets behind in an apocalypse. On top of this, many have invested in motorbikes, p
rivate jets, and helicopters to transport them to safety, as well as extensive security to keep the rest of us out of their decadent safe havens.
Steve Huffman, CEO and co-founder of Reddit, recently claimed to have undergone laser eye surgery solely to avoid the ‘huge pain in the ass’ that would be getting hold of contacts lenses during the apocalypse. He cites having a scene from the movie Deep Impact filmed near his high school as one major source of his paranoia, confessing ‘every time I drove down that stretch of road, I would think, I need to own a motorcycle because everybody else is screwed’. One can only imagine the trauma of having such a disturbing movie filmed so close to where he received his privileged education. For those under the impression that Steve is concerned only with his own survival in the upcoming apocalypse, you can sleep soundly knowing that he does believe ‘being around other people is a good thing’, even predicting that he would be ‘a pretty good leader…or at least not a slave, when push comes to shove’.
It’s not only Steve who’s opened up about his apocalypse plans, with over half of all Silicon Valley billionaires allegedly having invested in some kind of preparation. Former Yahoo executive Marvin Liao has taken archery classes in a heroic attempt to protect his family against any angry mobs of poor people they may encounter once the revolution begins, and a head of a successful investment firm, who wishes to remain anonymous, claims to be so concerned about climate change that he keeps his private helicopters gassed up at all times.
Astonishingly, these doomsday preppers have been criticised by some for being excessively lavish, delusional and self-centred. However, former Facebook project manager Antonio García Martínez defends them, suggesting they are actually amongst the most intelligent and insightful members of our society, as only ‘people who are particularly attuned to the levers by which society actually works understand that we are skating on really thin cultural ice right now’. When you consider the statistics, it does become evident how well attuned these people are to the major problems our planet faces today. It is predicted that around 40% of the total wealth of the world’s billionaire’s could provide the whole planet with renewable energy, but why bother investing in this technology when you can just buy a helicopter that burns three times more fuel than a car? A mere 2.7% of their wealth could irradiate poverty, but why help close the wage gap when you can hire security to keep poor people away from you? These people truly are the inspiring, innovative thinkers that will survive the imminent apocalypse and go on to forge a better tomorrow.
(Image courtesy of Vivos)