Preparedness – Why Ken’s Wrong

Preparedness for impending disasters, real or imagined, seems to be a big preoccupation for Ken Wheeler. Find out about his hoarding and bug-out behaviours and the odd attitude that seems to underlie them.

Since the end of World War II, a loosely organized coterie of people fearing an impending outbreak of civil disorder has existed in the United States and elsewhere. They’ve had various names over the years, including retreaters, survivalists and preppers.

Followers of this worldview share a few things in common. They’re overwhelmingly white, anti-establishment, politically right-wing and heavily armed. Also, their visions of disastrous unrest never materialize.

Their activities emphasize self-reliance, stockpiling supplies, owning remote wilderness retreats and learning suvival skills. Not everyone who’s interested in disaster preparedness is a violent fanatic, but observers have always noticed a strong undercurrent of firearm fervency within the prepper movement.

“What They Want Is a License to Open Fire”

As the New York Times columnist Neil Genzlinger put it, “What these folks want most of all is not to protect their families — the standard explanation for why they’re doing what they’re doing — or even the dubious pleasure of being able to say to the rest of us, ‘See, I told you the world was going to end.’ What they want is a license to open fire.” 

For quite a while now, Ken Wheeler has been promoting ideas around firearms proficiency, self-reliance, stockpiling supplies, and gaining wilderness survival skills. He lifts his ideas from fake experts like Don Stephens, Howard Ruff and John Ramey, the founder of the group “The Prepared,” from which we get the term “Preppers.”

The Angry Photographer has also bought into the prepper approach to personal finance. He advocates amassing land, non-perishable food, gold, silver, ammunition, marketable skills and even vodka, since these will be the new currencies once the economy has gone to wrack and ruin.

Cabin in the Woods and Parcels of Unserviced Land

To that end, the Theoria Apophasis host has bought himself a cabin in the woods and acquired other parcels of remote, cheap, unserviced land. He’s also been building small solar arrays so he can go off the electrical grid.

Ken Wheeler’s propensity for gadget hoarding has him collecting a wide range of devices for things like food preservation, water purification, lighting fires, providing light, and his naive vision of living off the land.

Ironically, the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office recently served Kentucky Ken with a civil summons for a long-forgotten, unpaid, $5,000 credit card bill. Since he’d tied up all his savings in land and gadgets, he couldn’t come up with the money to pay it.

Tied Savings Up in Land, Couldn’t Pay Unexpected Bill

We all run into unexpected expenses from time to time. Most of us prepare for this kind of “rainy day” by setting a few months’ salary aside or arranging a line of credit.

Despite all the far-fetched disasters for which the Theoria Apophasis host had prepared, this foreseeable, everyday setback caught him totally off-guard. He doesn’t seem to realize that emergency plans should be realistic, emphasizing likely contingencies over improbable scenarios.

An acquaintance knew about his gadget hoarding tendencies and took pity on Ken Wheeler’s financial plight. This neighbour picked through Kentucky Ken’s hoard of high-priced, superfluous widgets and took just a few off his hands, easily bailing him out for now- not exactly an independence-based or long-term solution!

Delusions of Impending Catastrophe

Why does the Angry Photographer devote so much time and energy to prepare for such extreme upheavals while overlooking routine risks? He seems to experience delusions of impending catastrophe.

The Theoria Apophasis host insists he’s not a “Chicken Little.” Instead, he says he simply has a gift for “situational awareness” and “keeping his head on a swivel.”

He claims to detest being labelled a prepper, apparently because of the term’s connotations and not because he rejects prepper values. He challenges his critics to prove conclusively that no apocalypse is on the way, imposing an impossible standard of proof onto those who contradict him.

Two Decades Have Passed Without Predictions Coming True

Ken Wheeler reports that he’s been aware of the coming catastrophe for the last twenty years. The logical fallacy that two decades have passed without any of his predictions coming true seems lost on him.

In his videos, Kentucky Ken has cited the ideas of a conspiracist named John Coleman. In his self-published 1991 book, The Story of the Committee of 300, Coleman writes, “The Committee of 300 is the ultimate secret society made up of an untouchable ruling class, which includes the Queen of England, the Queen of the Netherlands, the Queen of Denmark and the royal families of Europe.

“These aristocrats decided at the death of Queen Victoria, the matriarch of the Venetian Black Guelphs that, in order to gain world- wide control, it would be necessary for its aristocratic members to ‘go into business’ with the non-aristocratic but extremely powerful leaders of corporate business on a global scale, and so the doors to ultimate power were opened to what the Queen of England likes to refer to as ‘the commoners.'”

Cites Discredited Book The Story of the Committee of 300

Although there’s no evidence whatsoever that these supposed Venetian Black Guelphs or the Committee of 300 exist, Ken Wheeler has bought into Coleman’s claims that, “Committee of 300 corporations, banks, and insurance companies operate under the unified command covering every conceivable matter of strategy and cohesive action.

“The Committee is the ONLY organized power hierarchy in the world transcending all governments and individuals, however powerful and secure they may feel themselves to be. This covers finance, defense matters and political parties of all colors and types.” (emphasis original)

Retired UK Colonel Barry Turner of the Royal Engineers has thoroughly reviewed The Story of the Committee of 300, challenging Coleman’s supposed intelligence credentials and pointing out countless factual errors and unproven allegations in a video interview here. Summing up his analysis, Colonel Turner concludes that, “Quite frankly, I think it’s a load of drivel. It is insupportable as a refence document.”

“Frankly, I Think It’s a Load of Drivel” – Colonel Barry Turner

The Angry Photographer cherry-picks current events through a lens of paranoia. His confirmation bias interprets events based on his apocalyptic, conspiratorial worldview of a “planned collapse” or “reset” of society.

The Theoria Apophasis host gets the word “reset” from the title of a book by the World Economic Forum’s Klaus Schwab and Thierry Mallaret, COVID-19: The Great Reset. The book’s central thesis is “that core values of inclusivity, solidarity and trust are strong determining elements and important contributors to success in containing a pandemic.”

These values don’t sit well with Ken Wheeler, because he falsely believes that the non-existent “Committee of 300” controls the World Economic Forum . He also thinks that including those who are different, solidarity with strangers and trusting one another are naive and foolish principles that will only get you killed.

Views Trusting One Another as Naive and Foolish

Schwab and Mallaret suggest that the pandemic might result in a societal reset that narrows the gap between rich and poor, substitutes solidarity for competition and values stability over growth. Such a world sounds disastrous to the Angry Photographer, and he declares he will never comply with such a societal reset.

This belief in preparedness for an imminent boogaloo also seems to stem from Ken Wheeler’s belief that he’s an unappreciated genius who’s made several revolutionary discoveries. In their diagnostic manual DSM 5, the American Psychiatric Association specifically describes false beliefs exactly like these as classic symptoms of a condition called Grandiose Delusional Disorder. Readers can judge the relevance of that observation for themselves.

Unfortunately for him, neither people around the Angry Photographer in real life nor recognized experts accept his outlandish views. As a result, he receives a great deal of scorn and ridicule when he shares his odd ideas with others.

Scorn and Ridicule When He Shares Odd Ideas Publicly

Imagining a dystopian future seems to be a psychological defence mechanism. The vision of a society that has fallen apart in which his ingenuity and vastly superior knowledge give him the last laugh seems very gratifying and vindicating for the Theoria Apophasis host.

Another driver of Ken Wheeler’s preparedness proclivities is his conspiracist temperament. He doesn’t trust authority figures like doctors, scientists, teachers or the health officials who make rules about the pandemic like social distancing, masks and vaccines.

The Angry Photographer tells his viewers that all governments are inherently evil and controlled by a hidden, sinister cabal. Parroting John Coleman’s 30-year-old false claims, he seems to believe the pandemic has been a government plot to enslave the masses, except for Ken Wheeler, of course.

Believes Pandemic is Government Plot to Enslave Masses

The Theoria Apophasis producer claims to fear the rise of a totalitarian government in the United States that will take away everyone’s liberty. He also seems to fear a foreign invasion by an evil empire and one or more staged natural disasters to conceal fiendish plots.

It doesn’t seem to be clear, even to Ken Wheeler himself, what form the looming societal collapse will take. Apparently, the “Committee of 300” is orchestrating some form of cascading infrastructure failure to hide the true goal of their cunning plan for a repressive new world order.

In preparation for all this, the Angry Photographer maintains a “bug-out bag.” He tells his viewers that it contains over $2,800 worth of gear whereas a typical deluxe survival kit costs less than $200.

Maintains a”Bug-Out Bag” Containing $2,800 Worth of Gear

Ken Wheeler can barely lift this bag, and he says it takes four hours to pack or unpack. Fake expert to the end, he brags that “I can honestly say that there’s nobody on this Earth that has a better go-bag.”

Apart from a few sensible things, like a first aid kit and some ready-to-eat meals, the bug-out bag reflects the Theoria Apophasis creator’s penchant for gadget hoarding. It includes numerous unwieldy but impressive-looking combat knives, military-grade water filters and massive reels of industrial-strength cordage.

The enormous canvas pack also contains several portable stoves with naphtha gas canisters, primitive fire starting kits, sacks of dried seeds, surgical tubing, shortwave and weather radios, headlamps, multiple hand-cranked and battery powered flashlights, cases of assorted batteries, battery chargers and lots and lots of camouflage.

Kit Contains Numerous Firearms and Ammunition

Although he’s oddly coy about it, one gets the impression that the kit also contains numerous firearms and related ammunition, which seems to explain its weight and wildly exorbitant budget. This outfit might make sense for a team of army rangers parachuting behind enemy lines, but it’s not what emergency management experts mean by a go-bag.

Kentucky Ken’s inclusion of firearms tends to confirm Genzlinger’s impressions of trigger-happy survivalists. The YouTuber behind Theoria Apophasis displays enormous satisfaction describing his readiness to open fire to defend his property against the hoards unleashed by society’s imminent breakdown.

In the type of run-of-the-mill emergency for which a sensible household might keep a go-bag, Ken Wheeler’s massive duffle would be virtually worthless. His demonstration video shows that he couldn’t carry his enormous pack for more than 10 metres if his life depended on it.

Superfluous Gadgets Paid for His Remote Cabin in Full

The Angry Photographer is fond of saying that “redundancy is God and diversification is divine.” This attitude led him to hoard so many superfluous gadgets that selling only half of them paid for his remote cabin in full, and an associate could rescue him from a $5,000 debt by buying just a few of the remaining items.

In addition to his hardware gadgets, the Theoria Apophasis host maintains a hoard of non-perishable food items. He claims to have enough food stocks in place to last him for at least eighteen months.

Ken Wheeler never misses a chance to endorse a prepper product called Mountain House Meals. He denies any affiliation with the company, so one wonders why he endorses their specific brand with such zeal.

Never Misses a Chance to Endorse Mountain House Meals

The Angry Photographer also encourages his viewers to amass huge quantities of honey, claiming it never goes bad. The truth is that the best-before date for raw honey is about two years, and it’s even less for processed honey.

His Long-Term Survival Food List & Accessory Items publication is a fountain of similar disinformation. For example, he encourages readers to hoard apple cider vinegar for its medicinal properties. It has none.

Also, while insisting he’s a teetotaler, the creator of Theoria Apophasis’s food list encourages readers to hoard alcohol, especially vodka. In his view, vodka will become the new currency during the coming apocalypse.

Encourages Readers to Hoard Alcohol, Especially Vodka

Since Ken Wheeler doesn’t drink, presumably he plans to exploit this weakness in others in his post-apocalyptic fantasy. Sadly for him, in a world with no governments or revenue agencies, anyone would be free to ferment or distill their own alcohol.

Moonshiners could also to sell or share their booze at very low prices. No governments would mean no sin taxes to inflate prices and limit alcohol abuse.

Besides, alcohol is a luxury, and it’s the first thing people forego during a societal collapse. Kentucky Ken seems to have swallowed 1990s-era Russian urban legends about vodka being all-important in a crisis.

Thinks Disaster Preparedness Will Make Him Indispensible

The Angry Photographer seems to think his disaster preparedness will make him an indispensable and independently wealthy warlord the moment the SHTF (shit hits the fan). And yet, for two decades now, that moment has never come. There’s no reason to think it ever will.

It’s hard to tell if Ken Wheeler genuinely believes all this paranoid propaganda. He may share it with viewers to draw a certain impressionable demographic to his YouTube channel.

The Angry Photographer’s videos on this topic are by far his most popular performances. Although YouTube rules prohibit him from monetizing prepper videos directly, they’re irresistible subscriber bait to grow future ad revenue and foster donations.

Subscriber Bait to Grow Ad Revue and Foster Donations

Sincere or not, his approach to disaster preparedness is based on logical fallacies propagated by fake experts. It could even be dangerous if the wrong people took his survivalist, vigilante message to heart.

Ken’s Evidence

Doomsday Prep
Doomsday Has Its Day in the Sun
The Three Ways Doomsday Preppers Will Die
Survivalism and the Survivor Mindset
The Prepared
Long-Term Survival Food List & Accessory Items

Published by David Morton Rintoul

I'm a freelance writer and commercial blogger delivering content services to selective business to business marketing clients. I have extensive experience in content creation, technical writing and training, working as a consultant and later in management roles with many of Canada's most successful organizations. Specialties: Content Marketing, Social Media, Technical Writing, Training and Development

2 thoughts on “Preparedness – Why Ken’s Wrong

  1. Ken have been positioning himself as a man who can handle the rigours of life and the breakdown of society. I take this with a pinch of salt, especially in light of this 2018 gem where 6 hours was enough for him to flee. Link here – I was tempted to point this out but he he would probably delete it as he does with most contrary opinions. I did wonder if the was highlighted whether he would delete it so I took the precuation of downloading a copy.

    Liked by 1 person

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