Originally Posted by HDMe2
The walkers aren't stopping people from agriculture or rebuilding society any more than wild animals in general.
Inside the prison, for example, they were full well able to keep the walkers out and have a large are for gardening and livestock... The problem? The Governor wrecked their prison fencing. People are consistently the problem, not the walkers.
In the real world, people go to war for all kinds of stupid reasons... and we don't have zombies, as far as we know... so the theory that eliminating walkers would mean "no need for groups to go to war" is naive at best. People, like the Negans of the world, will always want to run things just because he can.
I've posted countless times.. it isn't as interesting of a story... but IF this happened in real life, once you survive the initial surprise attacks from the dead... it would be easy to bounce back. You kill all the undead you find. Stop sleeping with other people, always sleep alone in a locked room. Someone doesn't let themselves out the next day, you know you need to go in there armed and ready to kill them because they died during the night. Always cremate the dead, immediately... never go anywhere alone, always in a group so no one surprise dies and comes back to attack you later.
Then, all that is required is for people to cooperate and rebuild. But that is the toughest part. Getting people to not take advantage of the situation to mount their own quest for power. You'd be like pre-industrial revolution again in some ways until you managed to take out all the bad/power mongering groups.
The walkers, and this is true to the story Kirkman wants to tell, were never the story. They are a prop. The story is how many horrible people will wreck things for the good people, after whatever apocalyptic thing happens.
I'm not talking about some fenced in little plots. More like this:
Can you safely breed livestock with walkers around? How much grazing can you let cattle do?
When production is huge, there's no point in Negan taking 50% from every group. It would be more than he can consume or store before food spoils. So if Hilltop increases production by at least 10 fold, Negan can take 5% to get the same amount. Or he can still take 50% but he'd likely have to sell a lot of it or trade it. Or take 50% from Hilltop but much less from other groups.
And Hilltop, even if they gave up 50% to Negan of 10x production, they still have 5X the production they used to have, so they can sell/trade a lot of it.
At the same time, mortality or life expectancy increases again and you may see a boom in births, so in 20 years, you have a much bigger population, which is harder for Negan to control. Not without large weapons systems like aircraft and something better than guys with guns in regular cars.
But if he starts to commit massacres (like the Oceanside males) to keep all these groups which will have much more resources, then sooner or later, there will be revolt and the groups will combine resources to defeat him. Hell, you assume there will be war coming to WD anyways, even with zombies around and resources being scarce.
Why did barbarians, vikings and other raiding cultures stop attacking European cities? They weren't all conquered. Eventually production increased and they didn't have to try to survive by taking away resources from other tribes.