Survivalist GOP Rep.: You Should Probably Avoid Cities

| Tue Mar. 15, 2011 3:35 PM EDT

Maryland GOP Rep. Roscoe Bartlett is a child of the Great Depression, Nancy Pelosi's date to this year's State of the Union, and a member of the House Tea Party Caucus. As Alexander Carpenter points out, he's also something of a survivalist:

In a series of clips from a documentary called Urban Danger available on YouTube and 3AngelsTUBE, Congressman Roscoe Bartlett (R-MD)...shares his fear of impending threats to America and advocates that people move out of urban areas...

In the context of his surmising about the threat of living in urban areas, Bartlett states in the video that there are two strains of smallpox, one is the U.S. and one in the "Soviet Union".

You can watch the documentary online here. Urban Danger's official site takes pains to note that the film is not "survivalist," but rather a guide to "finding practical solutions to problems we face today."

Those problems, however, are dire: One speaker warns that American cities are about to experience something "a lot worse than what happened in New Orleans," suggesting that the situation could be Biblical in nature; the congressman, for his part, floats the possibility of of biological warfare, alleging that terrorists may have already obtained the aforementioned Soviet smallpox. "A storm is coming, relentless in its fury," the narrator explains. "Are we prepared to fight it?"

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"It's a really patriotic thing to do," says Bartlett, on migrating en masse to rural areas. "As a member of Congress, I'm concerned, I would like everybody to do this. I would like everybody to have a year's supply a food. I'd like everybody to have some plans so that they can make do if any one of these emergencies occured. It's going to be easier to do that and you avoid the problems of civil unrest if you are out of the cities and in the country."

The next speaker is more blunt: "We need to get out."

In the film, Bartlett shows off the trap door that leads to his basement as well as the fresh-water pump system he installed himself ("if you're not familiar with root cellaring, you really need to get yourself familiar with it"). Other speakers offer tips on canning fruits, jams, and salsas; huckleberry picking is suggested as a good way to pass the time. For most of the folks interviewed in the documentary, faith plays a central role in their decision to light out for the territory.

Sarah Posner has much, much more on Bartlett's history.

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