For those that didn’t get the office memo, the world ends on December 21, 2012. Or at least that is what many believe an ancient Mayan calendar is predicting. I first heard this prophesy a number of years ago while exploring the vine-covered ruins of this Mesoamerican culture in the jungles of Guatemala. Like many, I wondered how a civilization 1,000 years in the past could predict future events to that degree of accuracy, but 2012 seemed like a long time off then. Guess what, it isn’t so distant in the future anymore!

Why and how the world is going to end depends a lot on whom you ask. The list of possible natural disasters includes massive earth quakes, tsunamis, super volcanoes, solar storms that fry our electrical grid and our computers, global warming, global cooling, and just about anything else that would totally ruin your day.

So maybe a wise person should make a few preparations just in case. Even the American Red Cross will tell you that every family needs to have a 72-hour “BOB” (bug out bag) packed. But these basic survival kits are notoriously light on firepower. Who among us thinks that the normal rules of society are going to hold things together long while the world ends? Which brings us to Stag Arms’ answer to this problem, the 2012 Executive Survivor Kit.

What’s Inside

Naturally, the heart of this large grab-and-run Model 1700 Pelican case is a collapsible-stock Stag Arms Model 2 AR-15 rifle with LWI POD QUAD rail system and integrated bi-pod. An EoTech 517 Holographic Red Dot optic sight comes standard with the rifle. Also included in the kit are a Stag Arms Field Repair Kit, OTIS AR-15 Cleaning Kit and Silent Sling, two 30-round magazines (blocked to 10 rounds where required by local restrictions), Gerber MP 600 Multi-Pliers, Gerber Omnivore LED Flashlight (with batteries), dual purpose human/pet first aid kit, one military MRE Field Ration and 60 rounds of quality ammo (the evaluation rifle was shipped with PMC 55-grain FMJ-BT.

Left-Handed Rifle

One difference between the kit I had on loan and the standard model is that I requested a Stag Arms Model 2L left-handed model. I grew up on M16/AR-15 platform rifles, starting with an “XM16” back in 1968 going through Airborne Infantry training, followed by at least four more variations of the M16 while I was in the service, and several AR-15s in civilian life. No rifle feels as natural to my hands as an M16/AR-15. While I’ve always fired the rifle from my left shoulder, the controls are normally considered right-handed. The only problem I really ever had were some civilian loads in early AR-15s frequently smacked me in the forehead with their brass. For the most part, later rifles corrected the problem with the “bump” behind the ejection port.

Handling the Stag M-2L, I now realize I have been working under something of a handicap on the safety. In one of those “do as I say, not as I do” situations, I can tell you the SOP for the five-man Ranger teams I served on in combat was the point man carried his rifle safety off/full-auto. The other four men carried their rifles safety off on semi-auto. Yes, I know that defies all the carved-in-stone safety rules. It was simply more important that we put lead on target quicker than the other guy could react. It also meant I never had a reason to worry about a right-handed safety that much. Had this left-handed version been available to me, I might have reconsidered that SOP, as thumbing the safety off would have been an instinctive action on the way to my shoulder.

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