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Happy 7th Anniversary Doomstead Diner


gc2smFrom the keyboard of Surly1
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Originally published on the Doomstead Diner on February 19, 2019

“When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.”

 ― Hunter S. Thompson  


RE asked me to dump a few words to acknowledge the 7th anniversary of the Doomstead Diner. This is in no way like the US Government beseeching Shinzo Abe on behalf of Trump to nominate Ol' Melonhead for the Nobel Peace Prize. If you are like me, the Diner (and especially the Diner Forum) has been your virtual home away from home and the recipient of altogether too much of your time and attention for the last few years. It's become an unshakeable habit, like porn, online gambling or compulsive masturbation.

Doom blogs come and go, as does the readership and participation. Indeed, how much "doom" can one soul take before he reaches for the remote to find "I Love Lucy" reruns? The endless pessimism that comes with contemplating the end of resources, freedom, days and even humanity is overwhelming. Most "collapse" blogs attempt to predict the future in dire and sensationalistic terms. In 2007-8, sites like like prison planet.com predicted that terrible things would happen in two years. And when they didn't, said terrible things would happen two years later. (You'll recall who was elected President in 2008.) Yet they didn’t happen. Eventually, people tire of all the “end of the world is nigh” BS. One of the things that has made the Doomstead Diner different, in my view, is a foundation of optimism that underpins the regular observation of the way the wheels are coming off the wagon.


See You On The Other Side

One of the qualities that identifies successful people is optimism. Successful hunters, like successful people, never stop learning, practice their craft, cultivate a positive mental attitude, manage stress effectively, and let go of mistakes or reversals quickly. Those who succeed adapt, learn and thrive. Survivors, if you will. A modern genetic theory holds that everyone alive today is descended from those who survived a "population bottleneck," or sharp reduction, that occurred 75,000 years ago. There is controversy in the scientific community over what caused the bottleneck. One theory is that with a volcanic eruption at Lake Toba in Sumatra that blew @75,000 years ago resulting in  massive global cooling effects that may have reduced humanity to fewer than 10,000 souls, or 1000 mating pairs. The debate continues, but the timing is right. Some survived. Some always survive. It's this attitude that lies at the root of the Diner and which separates it from other collapse/doom/survival sites. Not for nothing did I first encounter the tagline, "See You On The Other Side" from RE.

I first "met" RE online in the commentariat of The Burning Platform. in late 2010-2011, as I began to become more collapse-aware. The Burning Platform is Jim Quinn's blog, and while Quinn is a gifted writer capable of keen insight and a felicity of writing style, his touch as a site admin ran to "bully."  He was not above rewriting people's comments to invert or ridicule what they said. Tough room.

JQ found god with the Fourth Turning, created by authors William Strauss and Neil Howe, and which theorizes a recurring generational cycle in American history. They described a recurring pattern of four generational types, each with a distinct collective persona, and a corresponding cycle of four different types of era, each with a distinct mood. The overlay of generational types and national moods was able to be shoehorned in a unified theory to account for all moments of Anglo-American crisis, and thus took the position of holy writ at TBP. Here's an typical example:

There have been three prior Fourth Turnings in U.S. history: the American Revolution, Civil War and Great Depression/World War II. The American Revolution preceded the Civil War by 87 years. The Great Depression followed the Civil War by 69 years and this Millenial Crisis arrived 76 years after the Great Stock Market Crash of 1929. Essentially, each prior Fourth Turning has represented a Revolution in American history…

No one knows exactly what events will transpire over the next 15 to 20 years as this Fourth Turning morphs from regeneracy to climax and finally to resolution. The mainstream media, most politicians, and self proclaimed progressives are blind to the cyclicality of history. They believe history proceeds in a linear upwards path. These are the people you see on TV talking about toning down the rhetoric, false gestures of bipartisanship, and soothing words about the financial crisis being a thing of the past. They fail to understand that once the mood of the country is catalyzed by a trigger event or events, there is no turning back the clock… Absolutely no one anticipated the extreme measures taken by the U.S. government and Federal Reserve to “Save” the country from a 2nd Great Depression. These measures have added $5 trillion to the National Debt in the last 40 months. It took 205 years to accumulate the 1st $5 trillion of debt.

And so on. In contrast, here is RE in the comment section of the same article, advancing a point of view that has been remarkably consistent from then to now:

This cycle will in the end be dominated by the effects of decreasing available energy. Complex systems will no longer be supportable, requiring a vast simplification of how our societies are organized. Nation States will progressively break up in a One to the Many devolution, first toward Regional organizations, then Local ones, finally to Tribal organization. There may be larger reorganizations in the short term, but long term this is part of a grand supercycle larger than the 80 year periodicity of Strauss & Howe Turnings. This is the end of a 1600 year cycle that began with the Fall of the Roman Empire and proceeded through Centuries of the Dark Age…

For the rest of this generation, and for generations to come the population of the world will shrink markedly, likely to less than 1% of the current population of Homo Sapiens. The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse will ride herd over Humanity as War, Pestilence and Famine bring Death to every doorstep. The Age of the Grim Reaper is Upon us Now.

Don't you love listening to the classic hits?

TBP featured a zoo full of characters who revealed their inner hunchbacks in comment-section prose:  LLPOH, SSS, Stucky, Flash, MuckAbout, AWD. Those who think that comment on the Diner Forum gets heated simply never encountered the Bessemer-furnance-like blasts that emanated from the comments section of TBP in those days. Grunts, gas and gurgles. Some, like "Smokey," he of the putative "twelve inches of swinging meat," yielding "baby batter" and "throat yogurt," were real flamethrowers.

Quinn and his TBP jackals made much of the "Free Shit Army" that was, in their minds, about to be unleashed like zombie brigades upon an unsuspecting American public to steal their savings, rape their women, and usurp their precious bodily fluids as soon as a Democrat became President. Other regular TBP features included Quinn's "30 Blocks of Squalor," depicting his commute through the poorer sections of Philadelphia to get to his job as CFO of the Wharton School, the better to blame poverty of circumstances on the poor, and the weekly "People of Walmart" photo features, guaranteed to depict the clueless at their absolute worst and provide a welcome sense of superiority to its mostly male, suburban readers. 

During those days, RE posted a regular column there, entitled the Frostbite Falls Daily Rant. Forum aficionados will note that the "Frostbite Falls" moniker has carried over into the Doomstead Diner forum. RE's writing was materially different from the other postings in TBP. Equally acerbic, equally convinced that the fix was in, equally convinced that the end was nigh, but accusing a different set of villains. It wasn't the "Free Shit Army' that was the danger, it was the crony capitalists and their hireling whore legislators. The Burning Platform was once a blog with a libertarian bent, big on defending individual rights against government encroachment, and Quinn allowed multiple POVs. But in its current incarnation, it has gone full Trump and the commentariat consists of furiously nodding bobbleheads. It is now unreadable. But in those days, RE was a (perhaps overly dramatic) voice of reason and light in a room full of discordant voices.

[What was surprising was Quinn's support for the Occupy movement in its early days. In fall of 2011, I became involved with the Occupy movement's local iteration in Norfolk, Virginia. It was really my first taste of direct political activism, and it was exhilarating. (I also met a woman who was first a comrade and workmate, and who later became my wife. So I am able to answer the question, “How did you two meet,“ with the response, “I met her in the street.“)

Occupy indelibly changed the conversation in this country. Phrases like “The 99%,” “the 1%,” changed the national conversation and the prevailing narrative forever. Occupy exposed how the 1% control our fates through the financialization of all aspects of economic and political life: the middle class drowns in loans, student debt, fraudulent mortgages, and a democracy being sold to the highest bidder, all while our environment is turned into yet another toxic asset, sold off to the highest bidder as well.

We forget how in a country deeply resistant to notions of class, where even $250,000+-per-year professionals consider themselves ”middle class”, the development of any sort of class consciousness is quite remarkable. Most Americans find it difficult to stomach the sight of the capital gains classes being bailed out and then earning obscene profits while they, or their family, friends, and neighbors, are looking for their tax refunds without success.]

In the fullness of time RE and Jim Quinn fell out for good, as a stage can generally hold only one diva at a time. So RE decided to stand up a Yahoo News group, to write in virtual exile for an audience of maybe a dozen. And then in early 2012, RE and Peter Offermann stood up the first version of  a fully-functioning blog and discussion forum, the Doomstead Diner that stands before you today. RE registered and made his first post 2/19/2012 on one of his favorite subjects, Da Fed.

Peter Offermann, the site designer registered in December 23, 2011. We remember Peter as the person who, based on photographic evidence, did "An Analysis of the FBI Video of the Road Block resulting in Lavoy Finicum's Death." He started on Feb. 19, 2012 with a series of how-to posts. I registered on February 21, and made my initial post about the trial of Occupiers arrested for obstruction of justice charges in Norfolk, in which the charges (including those against my daughter) were dismissed.


How Quickly We Forget

What things cost in 2011 :Average Cost of New House : $263,200, a gallon of gas cost $3.91, a First Class Postage Stamp 44 cents, a gallon of milk $3.39, a dozen eggs cost $1.54 and a loaf of Bread was $1.88. The price of gold per ounce in August 2011 was $1,677.95, and the average Yearly Wage was $40,925.

The Top Political Events of 2011-12 included 11 separate mass shooting events, including

  • Shooting of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords
  • Mass Shooting in Aurora, Colorado, killing twelve and injuring fifty-eight people on July 20th.
  • Mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newton, Connecticut by 20-year-old Adam Lanza, killing 26 people on December 14th, most children. Lanza killed himself before he could be caught.

Other highlights included

  • The Arab Spring
  • Killing of Osama bin Laden
  • Occupy Wall Street and the Occupy movement
  • US President Barack Obama is re-elected for a second term over Republican opponent Mitt Romney
  • Greece debt crisis
  • The shooting of Trayvon Martin
  • Rising Gas Prices
  • Supreme Court Upholds Health Care Law
  • 2012 Summer Olympics
  • Attack in Benghazi, giving Republicans a four year head start on damaging the putative Dem candidate in 2016
  • Hurricane Sandy devastates the US East Coast and kills around two-hundred people on the US Coast and in the Caribbean 
  • Curiosity Rover successfully landed on Mars

Has the Diner been a “success?“ Like most things, that depends on the definition. It has succeeded in surviving with a small but avid following that, according to data from a recent survey RE created, is much more educated than the average. It's been a labor of love, paid for out of the pocket of RE, with a few infrequent donations to help keep the lights on and coal in the server furnace. The Diner has accepted not one cent of advertiser revenue since its inception, with no plans to start anytime soon– even no "Buy at Amazon" button. 

In terms of the optimism that infuses the Diner, RE created the Sustaining Universal Needs (SUN) Foundation, a 501c3 Nonprofit corporation dedicated to developing systems for living in a low per capita energy world, with a goal to assist the transition toward local, community based support and sustainable living in a world of reduced energy inputs. SUN remains largely a notion, but it is a positive effort and a note of sheer optimism at variance with the nihilism that characterizes so much discussion about collapse.

I attribute the survival of Doomstead Diner to the single mindedness and utter stubbornness of RE. He is monomaniacal, a wolverine of a human being. Anyone who has met him in person can attest to this: as disagreeable as Rumpelstiltskin, and with a personality to match, he is often wrong but never in doubt. But he is committed to certain ideas; that no matter how severe a future spin-down, some will survive; that community and sustainable living is possible; and that free-speech should be untrammeled.

We’ve had several episodes during the seven years of Dinerdom where posters have pressed the limits of free speech, running to abuse and acts of outright sabotage. We've learned that free-speech is not absolute, even on a online forum. No one grows up in life wanting to be a board moderator, or to manage the speech of others. It’s a thankless job, but is necessary to maintain at least basic civility. A discussion board is a commons. It turns out that free-speech is not absolute, and those who post to abuse and disrupt have to be managed. 


So whither the future of the Doomstead Diner? Who can say? Those who used to speculate about “peak oil“ have found themselves made irrelevant by events. There are always new processes, and new ways to wring petroleum products out of the last bit of oil sands, as long as price is no object. The frackers have proven that, even though their capital intensive scam shows that nobody makes any money, but the wheels keep on turning as the low-interest loans keep getting rolled over and the can kicked into next year.

Looking down the barrel of “collapse,“ whatever that is, exacts its own costs; it grinds on the soul after a while. What bring us together in this virtual space is the knowledge, the feeling in our bones, that the current way of life is unsustainable. The earth has limits in terms of resources, carrying capacity, and its capacity to absorb human greed. And for a small subset of the collapse-aware, the Diner exists as a waystation of sorts where we share information, talk and/or argue with one another, and post dispatches from waypoints by which we mark another ratchet in the eventual spin down.

People who predict “collapse“ end up looking like Harold Camping or Marshall Applewhite. Which is to say, wrong. But collapse is not a destination, but a process, and one in which we are already well and truly engaged. The fact that collapse cannot be resolved in a 28 minute story arc is our own shortcoming. The best we can do to survive collapse, or any calamity that befalls us, is to create and maintain community, and to support one another as best we can. That is what the Doomstead Diner does on its best days, and why the Diner remains a destination of choice for the happy few that read, participate, and make it what it is.


Surly1 is an administrator and contributing author to Doomstead Diner. He is the author of numerous rants, screeds and spittle-flecked invective here and elsewhere. He lives a quiet domestic existence in Southeastern Virginia with his wife Contrary. Descended from a long line of people to whom one could never tell anything, all opinions are his and his alone, because he paid full retail for everything he has managed to learn.

Diner 7th Anniversary Sunday Newzwire

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Published on The Doomstead Diner February 17, 2019

 

Discuss this article at the Cooking Zone Table inside the Diner

 

This Sunday Brunch article is in a new format for me, it begins with a brief synopsis of significant Collapse newz events which have occured over the last week in a few different areas.  My partner Surly uses this format in his "Week in Doom" articles, and it is a very successful format, although he writes in greater length and more detail in his analysis than I will be doing in this Newzwire.  Normally, I could write a full Blog on any one of these topics, but I am doing the newzwire instead here, for reasons which will become clear after you finish the latest synopsis of Doom Stories.

Geopolitics

Manafort Lies, Loses Plea Deal

Image result for manafort Pauly isn't looking too Dapper these days, is he?  Having been found Guilty of lying to the FBI, he is now facing 17 to 24 years in a Federal Penitentiary.  It couldn't have happened to a nicer guy.  One of his associates was quoted as saying Pauly was going to die in prison.  The worst part of this story is that the taxpayers will be footing the bill for Pauly's room & board until he does actually buy his Ticket to the Great Beyond, or maybe Pulls his own Plug.  The best part of the story is that the Noose is pulling tighter around the fat neck of Donalditry Trumpovetsky.

 

Trumpovetsky Signs Budget Deal, then Declares "National Emergency

Image result for trump clown Even fucking Ann Coulter has turned on El Trumpo over this Fiasco, saying:

'Ann Coulter Fires Back at Trump: ‘The Only National Emergency Is That Our President Is an Idiot’

I might remind you Ann Coulter is no Liberal, she's as Right-Wing as you get, coming in slightly to the right of Mussolini.  This whole bizness is going to split the Repugnant Party and the whole gruesome mess is going to be held up by a slew of Lawsuits coming from such notables as the ACLU and the Governor of California, to name two so far who have announced their plans to file.  There will be more of course.

Besides that, the Demodopes are bound to introduce bills in CONgress to prevent His Trumpness from unilaterally repurposing funds allocated by congress, which under the articles of the Constitution has the Power of the Purse.  Many Repugnants side with the Demodopes on this issue, fearing the Blowback that comes down the line when (not if) a Demodope gets elected as POTUS.  How about a National Emergency declared to try to put a stop to Gun Violence?  You can make a better case for this as an emergency than a few Wetbacks crossing the border, which is actually way down from its Peak Years in the early 10s.

 

Heather Nauert Withdraws from consideration as Ambassador to the UN

 Image result for heather nauert Another  Blonde Hottie has  turned down the Pussy-Grabber for a prestigious position in Goobermint.   Trumpsky is not very successful with the wimmen these days, despite supposedly being a Billionaire.  More like a Billion in Debt would be more accurate.  She of course is only the most recent recruit by Trumpini to either withdraw from consideration, quit a position she/he foolishly took to begin with, or get FIRED for not being a syncophant and yes-man to His Greatness.

Who the fuck would work for this asshole?  He doesn't listen to anybody, he doesn't read any of the briefings, he only knows what Sean Hannity on Faux Newz tells him.  Then his governing amounts to firing off a dozen Tweets every morning and barking orders to all his underlings.  He a self professed  "Dealmaker" who can't make a fucking deal!  If he went on the Let's Make a Deal show with Monte Hall, he would be sure to pick the wrong door.

Who needs an Ambassador to the UN anyhow?

 

Economics

 

Airbus Dumps the A360

A huge flying White Elephant goes to its grave after just 11 years in production, following closely on the heels of the recent cancellation of the Boeing 747.  The 747 however at least lasted since the 70s when it was first produced.  The failure was baked in the cake from the beginning economically, even forgetting about Peak Oil.

There simply aren't enough people flying to any given destination often enough to pack an A380 full of passengers, which you have to do to show any kind of fake profit in that industry, which like the automotive  industry has been debt financed and gone through multiple bankruptcies and Mergers & Acquisitions over the years.  Anybody else here remember PanAm and TWA?  I actually flew on PanAm several times back in the 60s, to and from Brasil for visits home when we lived there.  I got off the #7 Flushing line of the NYC Subway innumerable times at Grand Central Station, which the PanAm building was built over.  Driving a car on Park Avenue in NYC, you actually drive THROUGH the PanAm building!  That building is also a huge White Elephant, another relic to be of the Age of Industrialization.

Image result for pan am building park avenue

 

Sears back on Life Support, "Fast Eddie" Lampert resigns as CEO

Image result for eddie lampert Sears besides being a victim of the shift from Brick & Mortar retailing to online shopping was also gutted by Fast Eddie as a Leveraged Buy Out, and in its latter years was more of a REIT than a retail establishment.  Sears has been on the road to Bankruptcy for the last decade, but is one of those "too big too fail" entities so the banksters kept lending more money despite the fact the company never showed a profit in the whole time.

In this latest attempt to keep this corpse breathing, Fast Eddie proposed to "save" Sears and "save" Jobs by buying the performing assets of what is left of the company and offloading its liabilities, namely its Pension Obligations to Da Goobermint Pension Guarantee Corporation.  Another great example of  "Privatize the Profits, Socialize the Losses".

The latest chapter in this saga has Fast Eddie resigning as CEO, and Sears still being kept alive.

 

Climate Change

 

500,000 Cattle Drown in Queensland Floods

Image result for 500000 cattle die in australia flood More Pigs & Chickens may have died in the North Carolina Floods, but this was a truly devastating blow to the Oz Cattle Industry.  Beef is a huge export for Oz, sending Australian Wagyu to places like Singapore and Hong Kong where rich Traders can afford that quality of beef with pocket change.  Not such a huge export market to Japan, where they raise their own variety of Wagyu, which is even fattier than the Australian Wagyu.

These very same cattle were kept alive the last couple of years of drought by hand feeding them, and many if not most of these ranchers are already in deep debt.  Replacing these cows which cost $2000 each is just about unthinkable, particularly with the risks which Climate Change are bringing to that neighborhood.  We are witnessing the end of the era of copius consumption of beef, so if you are a Meatosaurus, get it now while you still can.

 

1500 Dairy Cows Die in Washington Snowstorm

Image result for 1500 cows die in WA snowstorm Not as huge in numbers, but equally devastating to the Dairy industry in Washington, 1500 Dairy Cows died in the recent Snowtorm they had there.  This also is bad newz for Alaska, since we get just about all our Dairy products plus most of the rest of our produce barged up here from Washington, or from Mexico.  There was a Dairy here in Alaska when I first moved here a decade ago, but it closed about 2 years after I arrived.  I suspect the price of milk, butter & cheese will be going up around here.

The only crops that grow well around here are tubers like Carrots and Potatoes, and also Cabbage does pretty good.  Just about everything else has to be grown in a hothouse.  One can only hope that when SHTF Day arrives, we'll be able to maintain some form of trade with WA, otherwise we'll be back to a diet of mostly Fish like the Inuit and Aleut of the old days.  Fortunately, I love Fish. 🙂

 

An "Atmospheric River" flows over SoCal

Image result for atmospheric river california  Fresh off their years of drought and this summer's record breaking Wildfire season, SoCal is now experiencing a train of torrential rain known as an "Atmospheric River" amongst the Meteorologists Weathermen.  What this means to a mountainous neighborhood recently denuded of trees is mudslides, rock slides and avalanches, along with a new round of "Mandatory Evacuations" for people stupid enough to still be lving in that neighborhood.  About the only place with a large population I can think of that is in a worse position as far as Climate Change is concerned is Saudi Arabia, now up to around 30M Homo Saps, up from around 1M at the beginning of the 20th Century.  Most of them are not Sheiks who will take their Private Jets and GTFO of Dodge when things get bad, they are Foreign Workers paid slave wages who will be left to twist in the wind.  In all likelihood though, the neighborhood will break out into internecine warfare before that day comes.

Internecine warfare in CA is not on the horizon at the moment, although the battle between the Goobernator of CA and Trumpini in the courts over the Wall boondoggle is just beginning.  That should provide even more Mud Slides than an Atmospheric River.

 

Psychology

A new Postal Shoot-em-Up in Aurora, Illinois

Image result for aurora illinois shooter We got a new Postal Event in Aurora, Illinois this week, this time by a disgruntled worker who was getting Pink Slipped.  Have we heard that story before?  In this case, the shooter knew he was getting the axe, and came prepared to take revenge on the spot .on his boss and whoever else in the place he had a beef with.

It also turns out he was an ex-Felon who managed to purchase the gun legally, in IL no less!  Also notable in this case is that apparently the gun was equipped with a Laser, which makes accurate shooting a whole lot EZier for anybody.  No doubt now some idiot will say "Guns don't Kill People, Lasers do" and there will be a demand to ban Lasers, which is preposterous because you can duct tape a laser pointer to any gun at all.

Is this a manifestation of collapse since we have been having Postal Events going back into the mysts of time?  It is in terms of its frequency of occurence.  The more people who are losing their jobs and feel hopeless, the more likely it becomes that one of them will decide to lash out.  So expect to see more of these events as Collapse presses onward.

 

OK, so now let's get to the reason I just did a brief overview rather than my usual in-depth analysis of any given topic for this week in collapse.  As regular readers of the Doomstead Diner know, this February marks the 7th Anniversary of the Doomstead Diner Blog & Forum.  In Celebration of that Anniversary, I decided to cook up a FEAST worthy of such an Auspicious Occasion.   I never expected the Diner would still be covering Collapse after 7 years, most blogs go around 4-6 years before the blogger suffers burnout or just runs out of new things to say.  In the last couple of years, I didn't think I would even live long enough to see the 7th Anniversary of the Diner.  At least not from this side of the Great Divide.

Image result for 4 horsemen of the apocalypse So, I have been engaged for the last few weeks practically full time preparing, cooking and videoing  the various dishes  I have chosen for the "4 Courses of Apocalypse" Diner 7th Anniversary Dinner, which actually still is not finished.  So there is still time to join us Inside the Diner to enjoy the full meal with us and discuss Collapse around the dinner table.  Definitely better than the conversation you will get at Thanksgiving Dinner with your Climate Denying family or the July 4th BBQ with obese friends & relatives discussing MLB Batting Averages and Strikeouts, and betting on who will make it to the World Series.

Producing the videos for this Celebration Dinner gave me a NEW Brainstorm!  I would create a NEW product for the Diner, a Cooking Show where the chief subject of conversation while cooking would be some of my favorite collapse related issues, Homelessness, Food Pricing & SNAP Cards, Emergency Preparedness, Prepping, Bugouts, Food Transportation & JIT Delivery, along with many other topics as well.  In a sense, it is a visual version of the Audio-only Rants I used to do on the Diner Soundcloud Channel.  The internet has over the time period we have been running the Diner morphed from mainly a Reading medium to a Visual one as Bandwidth and speeds have increased.

I had a request also Inside the Diner to re-publish more of the archived Audio Rants, so here is one from 3 years ago, the War on Cash I & II. As relevant today as it was back then:

All the archived Interviews and Rants can be found on Diner Soundcloud.

The Diner also runs several other websites as well, there is Diner YouTube, Diner Facebook, Diner Twitter and the Diner Reddit Newzchannel, r/GlobalCollapse on Social Media.  Whatever is your choice of ways to use the internet, the Diner has a product for you! 🙂

So, if you didn't guess by now from the video in the Header or the Feature Photo, the main topic here for today  is the new Cooking Zone of the Doomstead Diner, starring as Chief Cook & Bottlewasher the Crippled Cook of Collapse, RE. 🙂

The Cooking Zone is a work in progress, I am not a professional photographer or videographer.  The closest I came to that was as the Photography Editor for the Columbia Spectator back in my College years.  For the rest of my life, I was just an amateur hobbyist.  I never did any videography until the digital cameras came out when I started making short videos of skills I was teaching my gymmies and how to teach and spot those skills.  No editing, and the vids were max about 2-3 minutes long.  This is a much more complex undertaking, requiring I learn a bunch of new skills and also invent some new ways of doing things that I know the Pros do, but I don't have the money for the equipment they use to do those tricks.

I made some mistakes with the first season of videos I did, the main one being of all the cameras I own, I chose to use the worst, oldest and cheapest of them, simply because it was the easiest for me.  Sadly, that camera which I fondly called "El Cheapo" which has been a Workhorse for 5 years since the 1st Diner Convocation in Texas in 2014 has numerous issues now, among them a faulty auto-focus, a faulty automatic lens cover, a faulty zoom switch and a faulty mode selector.  Time for Retirement for that camera!  So the new Season of the Cooking Zone will be using two of my better cameras, a JVC Sports Vidcam and a Sony I have named the Pocket Powerhouse.  It's one of Sony's line of pocketable cameras that has many of the features of DSLR Camera, along with an AMAZING 30:1 Optical Zoom!  The new season of the Cooking Zone is already looking a whole lot more Professional than the early trials.

The new Season also features an upgrade to the set I use  for Food Preparation, that is what the Header video is about if you didn't watch it.  The new set is more functional and looks more professional, and enables me to get some camera angles I couldn't get before.  You won't miss any details of the techniques used in the cook and the ingredients used in the recipes with the new set.

If you enjoyed the Rants I used to do on Soundcloud, you should enjoy the new Cooking Zone of the Doomstead Diner.  It's NOT just about cooking and recipes, that just serves as a backdrop for me to discuss issues of collapse I find important.  The recipes are real though, the techniques are real and the food is GOOD!  Although unfortunately I can't eat very much of what I cook due to a depressed appetite as one of my symptoms.  Still, I always do eat at least a few bites of whatever it is I cook up on the show to see how it tastes.

As a Bonus here, I leave you with a Trailer for the first Episode of the new Season, the Trucker Basic Breakfast.  Regular Diners know that I was an OTR Trucker as one of my many careers over the 40 year span of my working life before I became a Cripple, and the techniques I developed living in my Freightliner for 7 years are very handy ones to know if you ever have to do a Bugout from your Doomstead due to such disasters as Floods, Wildfires or Earthquakes.  We actually had a major earthquake up here on the Last Great Frontier a couple of months ago which you probably read about it.  I have been through many earthquakes over the decade since I moved here, but none of them ever really scared me.  This was a totally different experience, and it is TERRIFYING.  I moved faster than I have in a couple of years fueled on Adrenaline to get out from under my digs, which I seriously thought would collapse on my head.

Image result for anchorage earthquake 2018

You want your Bugout Machine packed and ready to go at a moment's notice, when the local Firefighters knock on your door at 3AM and tell you to EVACUATE NOW!  You don't want to be Homeless and without resources with just the clothes on your back.  Although losing your home and perhaps your life is bad, it happens pretty quick in such a situation.  Homelessness is a form of Slow Death, and has been one of my greatest fears since I became a Cripple and lost all source of income for 7 months before I finally was approved for SSI.  I was one of the "lucky ones" also, only 40% of Disability applicant for SSI are approved on the first try, which takes at least 5 months.  If you are looking at a second try another 40% are approved after over a year, but 20% are left to twist in the wind in perpetuity.  The only reason I was able to survive this period was because I had a Nest Egg, enough money to carry me through with no income for 7 months.  How many Amerikans have enough money to last for 7 months with no income?  Answer, not many.  Most Amerikans don't even have a month's worth of bills in savings to carry them through.  They don't make enough money to have savings, in fact they generally go deeper in debt every month they are alive.  Even with my Nest Egg though, there were many nights during that 7 months I had Nightmares that I would end up as a Homeless Cripple Freezing to Death on the Streets of Palmer Alaska © .

I hope you join me for a meal at the Cooking Zone as we begin this new Adventure in communicating the issues of collapse in a new medium.

 

 

What’s Emperor Trump Doing? He is Busy at Splitting the Empire in Two

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Published on Cassandra's Legacy on February 11, 2019

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What's Emperor Trump Doing? He is Busy at Splitting the Empire in Two

 

Donald Trump seems to be doing what Roman Emperors like Diocletian, Constantine, and Theodosius did long ago: splitting the empire into two halves. Trump may not have consciously decided to do that, but an Empire can only be as large as it can afford to be and the American Empire can't afford anymore to dominate the whole world.

Flavius Theodosius Augustus "The Great" (347- 395 CE) was the last emperor to rule over the whole Roman Empire. His success was probably due in large part to his habit of plundering Pagan temples for the gold he needed to pay his troops. But Pagan temples were a limited resource and Theodosius himself seemed to understand that when, shortly before his death, he partitioned the Empire between his two sons, Arcadius and Honorius. Afterward, the empire would never be united under a single emperor again.

The Roman Empire had been a strong centralized power during its heydays, but it never was very interested in creating an ethnical and linguistic unity among its subjects. The Roman authorities understood that it was less expensive to tolerate diversity than to force uniformity — a typical policy of most empires. So, the Empire remained split into two main linguistic halves: the Latin-speaking Pars Occidentis and the Greek-speaking Pars Orientis. Theoretically, Latin was the official language but, in practice, the Empire remained a bilingual entity and, during the 2nd and 3rd centuries, the Roman elite would tend to speak Greek — considered more refined and classy than Latin.

The split of the two sides of the Empire was not just linguistic, it was economic as well. The Pars Occidentis remained based on mineral wealth which, in turn, fueled the Empire's military power. The Pars Orientis was more based on commerce and manufacturing and it exploited its favorable geographical position as the terminal of the silk road that connected China to Europe. During the expansion period, the military strength of the West made it dominant but, with the exhaustion of the gold mines in Spain, it lost the resources needed to pay for its oversized military apparatus. In time, the Western Empire became unable to control even its own territory and it squandered its remaining resources in huge border walls. It collapsed and vanished during the late 5th century CE. The Eastern Empire lasted nearly one millennium longer but was never able to rebuild the power of the old Roman Empire.

Fast forward to our times, and it is clear that the American Empire is facing the same situation that the Romans were facing around the 2nd century AD. Like the old Western Empire, the American Empire's economy is mainly based on mineral resources: crude oil in particular. But, with the gradual exhaustion of these resources, the empire cannot afford to dominate the whole world anymore.

Emperor Trump seems to have an uncanny ability to understand the situation, even though he may not be an expert in Roman history. His actions are perfectly understandable in light of the plan of splitting the empire into two halves. One half (Pars Occidentis) will still be dominated from Washington, the other half (Pars Orientis) will have Beijing as its capital. The Western Part will retain the original Imperial language, English. The Eastern Part may switch to Chinese.

Consistently, Trump is planning to abandon Afghanistan and also Syria, both too far and too expensive to defend and he also was not interested in an all-out confrontation with North Korea. But he seems to consider South America as part of the Western dominion, so he is moving to take control of Venezuela. Trump is also acting to destroy the hegemony of the dollar as world currency. Apparently, the idea is that the Western Empire is safer from financial disasters if the dollar becomes the Western currency only. So, the economic sanctions enacted against Iran, Russia, and other countries are forcing the Eastern Empire to develop new currencies and financial systems independent of the dollar.

Clearly, Emperor Trump is facing strong resistance. Just as many Roman Emperors, he not completely in control of the Imperial military apparatus and a sizeable opposition is trying to maintain the American Empire alive in is most extended and expensive form: dominating the whole planet. But the direction is clear and the situation is simple: an Empire can only be as large as it can afford to be. The gradual depletion of the mineral resources and the increasing costs of pollution are making a global empire impossible.

The Globalized World Empire was a beautiful creature as long as it prospered, but it was burning the dynamite stick at both ends. The time of global dominance is gone and the Empire is now in a convulsive phase: retreat is the most dangerous military maneuver and it is best executed maintaining an aggressive posture. Which is exactly what Emperor Trump is doing with his threats of war. But it is also true that the game of chicken is the second most dangerous game known (the first is the Russian Roulette). So, the retreat of the Western Empire may not involve just a rapid Seneca Collapse, as it was the case for the old Roman Empire, but a final blast of fireworks in the form of a nuclear war which would end civilization as we know it. Not pretty, but that's the way things are.

There remains one point of contention: is Western Europe in the Orientis or in the Occidentis part of the Empire? Surely, Britain tends to remain part of the Western Empire because of its linguistic ties with the United States. But the non-English speaking parts of the former EU don't have this link and they have strong – practically unbreakable – ties with Russia as an energy supplier. So, they might become part of the Eastern Eurasian Empire.

It seems that Trump understands this point very well, too, and it is in these terms that you can interpret his lashing out at the NATO allies at last year's G7 meeting. Trump's message to the states once forming the European Union was simply, "Sorry, fellows, we can't afford to defend you anymore unless you pay us more money than you can afford to pay." In this sense, Western Europe could play the role of Britain and Dacia during the 3rd and 4th century CE, abandoned by the central Roman Government and left to fend off by themselves against the barbarian invaders. Who knows? History rhymes again and we might even have a new King Arthur.

________________________________________

Was the fall of the Western Roman Empire a Seneca Collapse? Yes, by all means it was. Look at this:

 

From Taagepera, Size and Duration of Empires, 1978 — the vertical scale is in million square miles

See also "Can Donald Trump be the last world emperor?"

And you may also be interested at how Theodosius's daughter, Galla Placidia, managed to keep the Western Empire together even without plundering temples. The story is here.  

Note also that I used the term "understanding" but that doesn't mean that Trump consciously understands the deep reasons of why he is doing what he is doing in the sense of moving intentionally to the splitting of the empire. He is simply reacting to the stimuli he perceives and he moves accordingly. (which is, BTW, what we all do!!)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Adapters Movement- In Four Parts. Part II- Acceptance

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Published on the Doomstead Diner on February 14, 2019

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With your Host, Category5

(This was originally written as one article. Peer reviewers have asked me to break it down into 4 parts. The 5th part will be the complete article presented as one)

Part I can be found here- https://darkgreenmountainsurvivalresearchcentre.wordpress.com/2019/01/26/c5-defines-the-adapters-movement-in-four-parts-part-i-introduction/

 

Continued…

So, the first major Defining Principal is…

ACCEPTANCE

Acceptance is the final stage of the Kubler-Ross stages of grief. Wikipedia says, “The Kübler-Ross model is popularly known as the five stages of grief, though more accurately, the model postulates a progression of emotional states experienced by terminally ill patients after diagnosis. The five stages are chronologically: denial, anger, bargaining, depression and acceptance.”

Our society and life support system ( The environment, economy, resource base and social bonding ties) is the terminally ill patient. Most folks in our society are in the first four stages. A simplistic analogy would be, the majority of the population are in the Denial Phase. Many people still know an apocalyptic future is coming but because it is not affecting them, they intentionally try not to look at it. They look with suspicion or mockery or fear at anyone actually doing something about it. Once this is shaken and people are seeing their lifestyle threatened, mostly those on the political Right, people swing into the Anger phase. Scapegoating, threats, shootings and bombings follow, weaving complex conspiracy theories in an attempt to bring their shattered inner world under control. People say they have been “Red Pilled” but they have only “Woken” from one control system and don’t realize they are now in the second control system, using The Matrix imagery. This is where a lot of new and inexperience preppers find themselves. An insightful fellow that I dont remember the name of, mentioned that for those that wake up into the second Matrix, that is where they will meet all the Adolf Hitlers. Though not exclusive, those on the political Left and the techno progressive utopians are in the Bargaining phase. They think we can solve all this with the right governmental modification. They think we can solve all of our problems or we can solve technological problems with even more technology. See my discussion on declining EROEI in a previous articles.   Now for those of us that have been doing this for A LONG time, we may find ourselves slipping in and out of the Depression phase a lot. (I just want to point out here that we already have the necessary technology to get through this and we have had it for a very long time. Hundreds of years. It’s just not the the answer that people want to hear. In fact, people reject it as unacceptable)

Acceptance means staring the reality strait in the face and actively deciding to move forward. Either to get on with the job of Living in a fundamentally changed world or getting on with dying.

In the conversation with Farmgal that started all this, it started with her sharing that she had shared my Windapult article with her readers… and 7 readers promptly unsubscribed to her. She laughed because she gets me. She then shared about recent death threats she has received. She asked “Have you been noticing that as all these disasters are happening, Denialism is increasing with it” (and I don’t just mean global warming deniers though they are a prime example). I replied, “People’s identities are wrapped up in their excuses. As reality slaps them in the face, they will not change their minds and confront their excuses. Instead, like a drug addict, they will DOUBLE DOWN on their dose. All truth goes through three phases. First, it is ridiculed. Then it is violently opposed. Then it is accepted as self evident. The NEXT phase is the “Violently Opposed” part.

I previously posted this but it is worth bringing back for a second read because of the context of this post.

12 reasons why people refuse to address the idea that we’re headed for near-term societal collapse

(Press on that to go to article. This is from the fellow that independently came up with the term, “Deep Adaptation”)

Another more recent article of the psychological side of Acceptance is here.

It’s all in your head: dissonance

(You will have to cut and paste this title into your search engine as it will not allow us to link) Though worth the whole read, the part of it I want to emphasize is as follows.

The people I talk to aren’t idiots. On the contrary, they can keep two thoughts in their heads, they’re able to see that two courses of events can be parallel, that what creates prosperity also erodes what it’s based on. That situations can be ambiguous — alternately symbiotic and parasitic. And yet I can’t talk about this. The discomfort is too great.”

“There are people who choose the doomsday narrative because they feel it’s a more correct description of reality. The price they pay is to some extent no longer being able to take part in society. It’s impossible to be happy about your colleagues’ foreign holidays or consumption. You can no longer view increased growth as something desirable and natural. The things that form the foundation of your interaction with other people no longer function. For these people, playing along means a betrayal of themselves. But speaking up makes them so difficult that those around them can’t stand to have them near. There are also many people who wholeheartedly live the progress narrative, who reject every threatening signal or feel confident that every threat can be conquered, just like everything else that once stood in the way of progress. But the majority of us live with our heads down, trying to find a way to avoid the discomfort.”

“When I began to write this essay it was winter. An unusually late, cold and snowy winter, following a period with an unusually high amount of rain. Now, as I finish the text, an extreme heatwave has just finished. Around me people are talking worriedly about the heat, only to go back in the next instant to discussing their holiday plans and renovation projects. We move in and out of these two major narratives, but never stop in the place where they meet. We don’t stop in the dissonance.

MrsC5 sent that article to me because this has been her experience over the last few years. She has started to avoid old friends because there is simply nothing realistic to talk about anymore. Friends are dropping her because she is too difficult. We find ourselves longing for people that actually “Accept” so that we can talk about the practicals of day to day adapting. For me, This has been the loneliness of my entire life. Superficial friends that I keep light hold of. MrsC5 is the first Keeper.

This effects every aspect of LIFE. How we spend money. Our views on employment. What vacations not to take. What vacation destinations to take for education. What news to view. What objects to own. What skills to learn. How to act. WHERE TO LIVE.

That has been a big one for me. I kept moving from place to place trying to find a suitable destination where Adaptation was feasible. It was a lonely road. I certainly appreciate having found it. Now to build roots.

So, what is acceptance. Lots of preppers say, “It’s not a matter of if. It’s a matter of when”. But if they really were in the Acceptance phase, it would be obvious because of their radically altered lifestyle. If a person is living in an unsustainable city or in an unsustainable location or practicing an unsustainable lifestyle, while just collecting stuff, there is clearly a disconnect. Denial.

Adapting is not the destination though. I dont expect people to have it all together before they can call themselves an Adapter. We certainly haven’t. But it is the path. And it starts with Acceptance.

Some preppers will say, “Prepping is like insurance. I hope I don’t have to use it but it is there if I do”. Unfortunately, we are not on the same page. We are not even playing in the same ball park.

These are the unavoidable disasters of our time. The reality we must face.

-A fundamentally destabilized climate that We All caused, that potentially will end the human race. That is happening NOW. Not some future event and is happening far faster and far worse than we allow ourselves to face.

-A fundamentally unstable Economic, life dependent base, teetering on the edge of collapse that Can Not fix itself. It must simply play out. This will not happen all at once, everywhere… and it will not be evenly distributed.

-A fundamental decline in resources that simple belt tightening or technological advance Can Not solve. The low hanging fruit has already been picked. The big money in extraction and Energy Return has already been made with nowhere left to go but down. And we have become totally dependent, to stay alive, on an ever increasing need for more resources that are simply in decline. This will continue until it is no longer economically viable to extract… and then IT WILL STOP.

-A fundamental Fracturing of social bonds, inter dependencies and social cohesion. From the family level to the community level to the state level  to the international level. The Hobbesian war of all against all. That Is Not a future event in a post apocalyptic world or Something to expect when the SHTF. That is what we have NOW. It has only been kept in check by the tolerance that comes from abundance where peoples lives are not directly threatened by resource and economic sharing and has, in the past been moderated by religious discipline, Charity and social institutions.

So,  the Acceptance Principle starts with acceptance that Anthropomorphic  global warming is real and it is A Lot worse than we have allowed ourselves to face. As I write this, (at the time of writing) the California fires are still beyond control. They are trying to find the bodies now. We have already forgotten about Florida, Puerto Rico, or Fort McMurray. We don’t even pay attention to Peru, The Dominican Republic, the Northern Mariana Islands, etc. etc. etc. Climate change deniers may have trouble using the Adapters moniker and there is not much I can do about that. It is a Cult and you can’t argue with cultists. You can systematically  go through each of their arguments and junk science and who wrote it and how much they got paid by which corporations or their hired ad agencies or professional spin doctors, and it does not matter because they simply can not hear it. To do so would shatters their Self Identifying Mythologies. An addict must hit rock bottom first. Before that happens, they usually double up their dose, embracing the most ridiculous conspiracies. You would be amazed how many people think all the disasters are caused by the Jews using supper technology blue beams, to take over the world and usher in the antichrist and all the palio-climatologists around the world (in countries that hate each other) are all part of a global satanic conspiracy to cover up that the earth is actually cooling and we are going into an ice age, and all the dead people are crisis actors. It is an addiction and it is best to look at it that way. As things get worse, I expect to see MORE of it. Not less. And people will be murdered for disagreeing with them.

We cant even begin to discuss The Triage Principal until we are well into Acceptance. And to be clear, Triage means Abandoning California, Florida, parts of Spain, northern South America and I can’t even speculate how far the next Dust Bowl will stretch.

Global warming of a few degrees may even sound nice on a cold day like today. But the reason it is cold today is because (at the time of writing) heat is pushing cold air out of polar regions towards us. Since the fall, we have been getting about 2 storms a week. Acceptance for me means I have to think about wind barriers, strengthening structures, increasing insulation, improving drainage, removing combustibles, ground moisture retention, adding storm proof greenhouses for season extenders, Accepting warming will also push unseasonable frosts and lethal cold snaps or lethal humidity and heat towards me, etc.

In the same way, we also have to look at Economic Dependence. These issues are not separate.  Preppers often focus on one issue while denying the others (often as a conspiracy). We have been through the biggest Economic Bubble in human History. Even with minor fluctuations, most people can not picture it all falling apart, even temporarily. It’s been growing for so long that it almost seems steady state and the natural order of things. If I were to say, “The worst Economic contraction in human history is about to happen and is happening as we speak”, most people have no reference point for this.. It seems crazy and alarmist. The realm of conspiracy nuts. Of political extremists.

All bubbles burst. That is the nature of economic bubbles.

Still, you may notice, I rarely use the term, “Economic Collapse” as is frequently used. I usually say, Economic contraction. A stock market crash or sell off is not a collapse. Hyper inflation is not a collapse. A “Bank holiday” or closure and stopping or limiting  withdrawals is not a collapse. These are all common occurrences. They happen all over the world.

Resource Depletion. Once again, people jump through incredible mental hoops to deny this, decrying anyone pointing it out as being part of a satanic conspiracy at worst, or uneducated Luddites at best. They celebrate each new reported fossil fuel “discovery” as proof. At the moment, fuel prices are at record lows because of a temporary glut. People can’t wrap their heads around that it is because oil companies were simply pumping as fast as they can, often much lower grade quality that can barely be called oil, often losing money while doing it, producing fuels that no longer provide society with economic excess energy return capital and a decline in consumer growth due to economic hollowing out when the pendulum swings back into high fuel costs. How people can not see that when you use something up, it is then gone, is beyond me. And it ain’t just fossil fuels and its many byproducts. It’s potash, copper, rare earths, uranium, soil nutrients, top soil and aquifer water itself. ETC. ETC. Even pollinator insects. That is an extinction level event on its own, right there. I live surrounded by wood lots, much of it on its seventh cutting. There is nothing Forrest like about it anymore. It is now just one great big mega fire waiting to happen.

Social Destabilization. It’s been going on for so long that people now believe it is the natural order.

In Dmitry Orlov’s 2013 book,  The Five Stages of Collapse, he talks about, in Stage Four, “Social Collapse. Faith that ‘your people will take care of you’ is lost, as local social institutions… run out of resources or fail through internal conflict”. In Stage 5, “People lose their capacity for ‘kindness, generosity, consideration, affection, honesty, hospitality, compassion, charity’. Families disband and compete as individuals for scarce resources”.

If we can take a mental step back and look, we are sort of already in stage five.

 

So the first Action Principle is…

LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION

If someone was wanting an original thought to define the adapters movement, something that makes it different from the established prepping or survivalist movement, this principal separates the wheat from the chaff.

I certainly won’t be the first person to talk about Strategic Relocation. It is a common theme, whether it is relocating to the Idaho or Montana Redoubt for political or racial reasons, finding a Bug Out Location, buying a farm, moving to “The Bush” or moving to a homestead and starting a permaculture farm.

Nicole Alderman pointed out that there are levels of preppers and survivalists. From those that have “3 days of food and flashlights and are prepared to adapt to a small power outage.” to those that have  “ taken a wilderness course, has cool gear and can ID some edibles…knows how to make a debris shelter and a bow and arrow and has backpack camped ” to those that “have some tactical tools, a month of food, and some guns“, to those “who have a garden, maybe some livestock and are trying to learn old-time skills.” to those at “bunker level! They have a buried shipping container filled with guns and freeze dried food and MREs and lots of money spent on all this cool stuff”. (personal note. Never bury a shipping container) ” They all start out pretty similar, and similar skills are revered, but they diverge at the higher levels, because of their differing values and priorities.

I see that less as levels and more as the progression of prepper/survivalist thought. The degrees of commitment. Almost all of them are heading towards “I must get some land”  (except for the backpack batman bush ninjas). It’s the end goal. Most don’t make it that far. “I must get out of the city” is as far as they get. After interacting with hundreds of “Preppers” on and off line, reading the posts, books and comments of thousands more, I have found myself thoroughly disappointed with the caliber of 99% of them.

Many of them think they will survive…. and that they are morally superior to non preppers, simply because they call themselves a prepper. It sounds silly when I put it that way, doesn’t it? But that is the vast majority of preppers. The shear contempt and dehumanization of non preppers, while they are so minimally “Prepped”. Even if they have accumulated tens of thousands of dollars of stuff.

Well here is my “Original or Feasible” thought. If you have made it though the Acceptance phase, taking into account those four unavoidable disasters, Climate Chaos, Economic Contraction and Dependence, Resource Depletion and Social Destabilization,  it would seem to me that your FIRST “Prep” or Adaptation would be to go outside and begin making a clear assessment of, if where you are… has any future. If the answer is NO, then you must begin the long process of examining areas that stand the best chance as these changes occur and begin the processes of moving there.

You will want to start this NOW. Not “After the collapse” or “When the shit hits the fan”. This is your first action or prep.

The rest is just fluff and self masturbation with sexy gear and camping trips until you get this one thing worked out. Your tens of thousands of dollars of preps will actually be difficult and expensive to move and that money might have been better used getting you into a location where sustainability is actually viable. A place of  increased safety. Your stuff may even keep you from moving. Its counter intuitive but your preps might kill you. I suppose you can pawn them for pennies on the dollar when you lose your job and need to pay rent so the state doesn’t take your children. Not a great long term plan. A refugee can only carry so much.. We have to stop calling this the romantic or patriotic sounding Bugging Out, and start calling it what it is. Being a Refugee or self made homeless person.

At this point, I want to introduce you to Irv Mills.

Irv shares the doomershere with me and is regularly presented at the Doomstead Diner. I also noticed he was my 50th subscriber. That is not quite true. I piss off a lot of people that unsubscribe. It’s a badge of honor. I don’t regurgitate the regular prepper prejudices, creating an echo chamber. I tell people what they need to hear. Not what they want to here. They may go away… but the seed will remain rattling around in their brains.

Irv is also a person that, independently started using Adaptation as a better discriptor than prepping. He recently wrote a 4 part series that started with the title ” Preparing For Collapse”… then changed title. His words…

“The title for this series of posts started out as “Preparing for collapse”, but in my last post I immediately went into a rant about how I see a hard, fast, world-crippling collapse as pretty improbable. What I’m observing instead is a slow collapse that has already been happening for several decades and will continue for several more, albeit with much the same end result as a fast collapse. KMO, one of my favorite podcasters and a follower of this blog, suggested a better title would be Responding to Collapse, and that’s what I’ll be using from now on.”

Soooo… a lot of these radical changes I am presenting are not so radical. Others are coming to the same conclusions, independently. It ain’t just me acting all narsasistic. Others have hit the same wall. People have been accumulating the same knowledge set and the transition of thought was an organic change. All change goes through 3 phases. As mentioned before, First it is ridiculed, then violently opposed, then accepted as self evident.

What does Irv Mills have to say about Adaptation, Acceptance and Location?

“things will be much worse in some areas than others and if you are clever you can arrange to be where you’ll miss the worst of it.”

“This is already starting to play out in some parts of the world where things are getting bad enough politically, economically and/or climate-wise that many are leaving in desperation. I am talking about places like the Middle East, North Africa, Venezuela and to some extent even Puerto Rico… As the numbers of refugees mount the welcome they receive gets less enthusiastic…A timely move, before things get serious, can put you on the right side of things.”

“So, you’re looking for a place that is, and will continue to be:

  • well above sea level

  • not at the top of a bluff overlooking the sea that is being gradually eroded away

  • not situated so as to take the full brunt of tropical storms

  • not in the floodplain of a river

  • not in a desert or semi-desert that relies on water from fossil aquifers that are being depleted faster than they are replenished or rivers fed by glacial melt water

  • not subject to hot season temperatures or heat waves that are not survivable if the power goes out or you can’t afford air conditioning

  • receiving enough rain to allow for agriculture

  • with a growing season and soil that will support agriculture”

(I love the succinctness of this. I would have droned on and on on each, especially  fossil aquifers and rivers fed by glacial melt. I would add, avoid any place with a dam upstream or heavy industry that use chemicals, upstream of your water supply)

“In addition to the problems caused by climate change, the other two main concerns of this blog (resource depletion and economic contraction) are going to see most of us becoming quite a bit poorer, and not relying on anything that uses much energy, including shipping things in from far away. Most of our own food will have to be grown locally”

“I’ll be talking about coping with the challenge of finding and fitting into a community that can survive under these conditions. For now I’ll just say don’t assume that collapse will relieve you of the necessity of earning a living in the growth based capitalist economy. It’s going to take a long time to switch over to a low energy, low consumption, non-growth economy and in the meantime, most of us will have to keep a foot in both worlds, and initially mainly in the currently existing world. So any plan for a move will have to take into account the necessity of earning a living where ever you go. You may well find that the pressure of earning a living pushes you in the opposite direction from what collapse related planning would indicate is best.”

“The good news is that there are many rural areas where:

  • adequate energy can be had locally in the form of firewood which can be cut by hand

  • potable water can be accessed from already existing wells that can be converted to hand or wind driven pumps and surface water that can be used with fairly simple filtration or treatment

  • sufficient food for the local population can be grown on existing farmland within walking distance of town, without fossil fuel powered machinery”

“Sure, it will require some degree of advance preparation and a willingness to adapt our lifestyles, but it is all quite doable. This is not the case in the city, where local resources for self-sufficient living are simply not available.”

“When I speak of rural areas, let me make it clear that I am talking about small towns of a few hundred to a few thousand people, surrounded by farmland, not isolated farmsteads. It will take more than a single family or two to make this work. Indeed isolation is one of the most debilitating conditions that you can find yourself in as a human being.”

(Yup. I agree. I live on a secluded farmstead. More than most, I know its shortcomings and dangers. Its counter intuitive.  You should move towards people. Not away from them. It may not be an option though. Many will only be able to afford land that others don’t want, at which point you have to think more like a fortified frontier post. Seclusion does not provide you with safety. Quite the opposite.)

“This is more than just a matter of getting out of the cities before things get really miserable there. It’s going to take some time to get set up where you are going and to become integrated into your new community. (C5 addition-Multiple years if not decades) At the moment, people are still leaving small rural towns to find work in the city, but the day will come when that flow reverses. You want to be seen as a relatively old hand in your small town when that happens.”  (C5 addition- many rural areas have already reached collapse. Its a buying opportunity. People want out. This is how we have a large farm, instead of a shack. More so, old, small farmers of Boomer age are giving up, retiring or dying without an heir willing to bankrupt themselves continuing farming. Industrial farming doesn’t want the small farms. It is counter intuitive but move towards collapse. Just don’t expect a traditional wage when you get there. Expect to be resented for a long period)

“Your remote location should ensure you won’t be overrun, (and) that a manageable number of refugees show up. Your aim should be to treat these folks as well as you treat yourselves and, without abusing them, to turn them into a resource rather than a burden. You will be switching over to a lifestyle where people are needed to replace automation, so that shouldn’t be too hard.”

You can find more from Irv Mills here.  http://theeasiestpersontofool.blogspot.com/

Thank you Irv. You saved me a lot of time awkwardly re writing the same thing. I would have droned on and on more about each point. We are going so far on our doomstead as to create low tech housing for urban refugees because we know we will need them…or we will FAIL.

I would like to add more to Irv Mills work. When considering the long term viability of a location, the new Rain Bombs and flash floods must be factored in. Not on a flood plane is the important one but there is more to that. You cannot be near anything that is a water flow area. A nice gully with a trickling creek becomes a water, mud and debris channel when a years amount of water shows up in 24 hours or all the snowpack melts in a week. You have to ask whether the ground you are on will stay in place or other ground is now heading toward you. You will want to ask if your road way will channel water towards you like an artificial river. You will need to know everything upstream from you like, is there an industrial feed lot, where a breach in a manure lagoon will send it into everyone’s well water. As with the Romaine lettuce,  E. coli O157:H7 outbreak, diseases associated with feed lots can include poop related infections, antibiotic resistant super strains of bacteria and even spread or mutate viruses, including jumping to humans.

My only critique of Irv’s work would be to point out that much of the agricultural land around small farming towns is entirely based on central irrigation practices, Diesel heavy machinery reliance and imported heavy chemical fertilizer input as well as toxic pesticides. In most cases, the soil is already dead and simply a sponge for fertilizer. Much of it was nominal land to start with, only made viable by the not so Green Revolution (oil revolution) (Hang on. I need to add in, The new same “Green Revolution” of solar and wind is the same oil revolution. No oil, no solar and wind power). Any interruption in these inputs  will cease to make them viable. More so, there are very few farmers left and the ones that are left are geared to industrial agriculture. They don’t have the skills to switch back. Any attempt to would mean they couldn’t pay their debts and would lose their land to banks as is happening now. Also keep in mind that a farm is not a magic supply of diverse food. In most cases, it is monoculture. Farmers get their food from the supermarket like everyone else. Rarely do they have their own truck gardens. They are too busy and in most cases they have already lost the skill set or it was lost with the previous generation.

I want to bring in Farmgal here for a horror story she faced.

She shared, “Four years ago, I got a call from a fellow garden guru who asked if I would go on a farm consult. I knew the new land owners as they had bought lamb from my farm over the years. So I said I would love to. Who does not want to see the start of new permaculture based farm. We did soil samples, hiked around, looked things over and talked about what they wanted.”

“Skip ahead three years and Hubby and I went for spring visit. They wanted to show us what had gotten done. LOTS of work was done. It was  by the book. There were hugelbeds, raised beds and so much more.. and it was all under producing and or dying or had died. I walked around with a puzzled look on my face for a couple of hours.”

“They were doing everything right, but if they truly had to live off their garden/land, they would be in trouble and they had spent thousands on setup and plans, they had added compost, created compost, they had deep bedded. They had plants that I had gotten at the same time on the same buy in that were producing in some case hundreds of pounds and had made many babies, where on their land, they were stunted things if still alive.. Finally I looked at the edge of a garden bed and smiled as I found some “weeds” that would be good eating”

“Finally I called in the big guns, I put in a request for a Skype call to Becca in the states and we went over it. It clicked for both of us when I said, the land will not even grow enough “weeds” to feed them.. and my hubby who had been listening said, did you notice that the top of the gentle swale’s while struggling were still alive, where the downsides were dead, did it truly click. Four years, that land had never seen a spray.. but before that, it was hay land for 25 plus years… and that land was still “poisoned”… and they can have up to a ten-year recovery time.”

“TEN BLEEDING YEARS.. so much for the idea that we can just take over crop land and add compost, add permaculture gardening principles. Even in their raised beds with imported soil and imported wood chips used as soil cover, they would get a good first year, a poor second year and they were having enough leaching on the lower areas that they could have death in the 3rd year! Think about that. The movement of the water in the pasture was enough to kill off a well created RAISED BED. If food is life… this was death.”

“At least we had a plan for them. You see they have lots of bush land and that land is uphill and never been sprayed. The idea was to use their clean bush as the compost builders.  I pushed hard to grow on the edges as that was the only place in our walks that we had some natural wild foods growing. When we sat down for a visit late fall after their first summer with this knowledge, they were pleased to tell me that indeed the edges will produce food when planted, that they moved over to planting on the higher ridges, off set from the way the water drained from the biggest hay field and they had been able to get returns. They also admitted that they thought about selling the land and moving to a different farm that didn’t have this issue as it would be a long coming six plus years to correct this issue.”

“The moral of the story? We can read it in the books. We can have the knowledge. We can have the seeds and the skills to make it but the soil itself can hold the failure. How many years will it be that the water movement though those hay fields will still limit their ability to grow the plants of their choice.”

My moral of the story. Just because you are surrounded by farmland or even purchase a farm, doesnt mean it can sustain the local community or even yourself. It can require years of work, not to grow food… but to grow soil.

That gets us to our first Minor, Sub Principal.

SELF SUFFICIENCY IS A MYTH

 

To be continued, next episode


Bonus Reads- To be edited out later- At the time of posting, one more lethal Polar Vortex is happening. For half a decade now, I have been warning folks that this is the new abnormal now. To understand why, go here-  https://theconversation.com/how-frigid-polar-vortex-blasts-are-connected-to-global-warming-110653

For those that need to understand why solar and wind electric power will not save us and why any “progressive environmentalist” should be outraged, go here- https://www.versobooks.com/blogs/3797-end-the-green-delusions-industrial-scale-renewable-energy-is-fossil-fuel?fbclid=IwAR0WAxZ7kW3chPtpMpVGN5CX8I_9ivaxw4cSgwGPXu-C_qkdS_wEm6AR7cI    A must read.

______________________________________________________________________

This is where I usually pass the hat… but stick around for a bit and continue reading.

This took my all… and it did mentally burn me out some. I really reached deep. I did consider putting it behind a pay wall… for about 15 seconds. This is meant for the world. The most valuable “Tip” you can offer me here is for you to share this post. Re post it. Spread it around. Talk about it with people. If not, this has been a big ol’ waist. It dies in the dustbin of the internet.

I should also mention Farmgal gave me an ear full. She wrote, “STOP IT! LOL.. you are allowed to find a way to charge for your work! Yes, I fully agree that the principles and the overall needs to be free (with a request for give the tip) but this was a shit load of work and you have the right to value your time, your knowledge and your words.”

So, there you go. The paypal link is at top of the page where it says, “Giving Just the Tip”.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7 Years of Collapse Dynamics on the Doomstead Diner

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Published on The Doomstead Diner February 12, 2019

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2019 Collapse Survey still OPEN

Survey now @ 648 Submissions

Get your Opinion Counted  before you Go Extinct

 

Today, February 12, 2019 marks the exact day the Diner was loaded to the internet by our erstwhile partner and Chief Software Architect Peter when he put it up for testing.  Actual ongoing full operation of the Diner didn't begin for another week or so though.  In any event, our Celebration of the continuing work of the Diner to educate people about the ongoing Collapse of Industrial Civilization is a continuing affair through February and today I will start by publishing one of my videos from the new Cooking Zone of the Diner, where we celebrate also the great cornucopia of food we here in Amerika are still able to acquire at reasonable prices, at least if we ourselves have not yet completely fallen off the cliff and are at least eligible for and receiving a SNAP Card, generously provided by JP Morgan Chase to their considerable profit from this progam.  The video up at the top of the page here is one of the first I made in this series, which has morphed and grown over the last month into…well…a MONSTER which is consuming a huge portion of my increasingly limited awake time. lol.  There are numerous other videos to view if you are a Foodie, available either on the Diner YouTube Channel or the new Reddit r/CookingZone channel.

When I began this journey investigating Collapse in 2007 after the collapse of the investment bank Bear Stearns, by NO MEANS did I think that over a decade later I would still be writing on the internet and analyzing the causes and effects of a Civilization Collapse.  Nevertheless, here I still am, although not in the greatest shape physically or health speaking a decade later.  While the civilization around me collapses, my body is collapsing at an even greater rate of speed, although fast as things are going now since Trumpofsky was elected as POTUS, this is a tight race to the bottom.

The Diner has seen its ups and downs over the years since 2012 when it actually was launched after I had issues on my Reverse Engineering Yahoo Group with automated censorship by Yahoo Bots of some of my posting to that group, which was a small congenial group of people  including myself, Peter & Surly who remains together with me (after numerous fights and disagreements about…almost EVERYTHING! lol).  Just about all the other original Founding Fathers and Mothers of the Diner have drifted away over the years, although I catch some of them online occassionally Lurking and reading the posting.

The Diner itself in 2018 had its biggest year ever in terms of Page Hits to the Diner Forum, 11,528,568 of them to be exact.  That is more even than what I consider our Peak Years on the Diner in 2014-15 when there were numerous Blogs up on the net concerned with the topics of Collapse, and we did numerous interviews and round table discussions with other Collapse Pundits like Ugo Bardi, Gail Tverberg, Steve Ludlum, Jason Heppenstall, Nicole Foss, Tom Lewis and many others discussing the issues and progress of Collapse.  The Video discussions are in many cases still relevant today (especially to newbies to collapse) and are all still available to view on the Diner YouTube Channel.  Also still available for listening to are all the interviews (and RANTS! lol) on the Diner Soundcloud Channel with such notables as Guy McPherson, Dmitry Orlov, Paul Chefurka, Ray Jason, George Mobus, John Michael Greer and again, many others.  I will include here what I consider the very best of them, our interview with David Korowicz, the Irish Physicist who authored the paper "Trade Off: Financial system supply-chain cross contagion – a study in global systemic collapse" which is a concisely written paper much shorter than the typical Collapse tome like Joe Tainter's "The Collapse of Complex Societies"  and well worth the read.  However, while David is very concise with his written prose in an academic paper sort of way, not true when you talk to him.  lol.  David is an Irishman with the Gift of the Blarney, and he can TALK.  We went on for literally HOURS with this interview, which I actually did sitting in my car outside an Internet Cafe here on the Last Great Frontier of Alaska with Free Wi-Fi, while my co-host Monsta did his portion from his home in Jolly Old England.  If you haven't listened to this interview before, it is well worth a listen to now still.  You can listen while you are stuck in traffic on the morning commute or while you chop wood for your Doomstead.  Multi-tasking!

In the intervening years since then, many of the other bloggers and collapse pundits have either quit entirely or greatly reduced their output in terms of blogs/month and word count.  As for me, I "Keep on Truckin", which I intend to do until the Internet Goes Dark, I Buy My Ticket to the Great Beyond or the Men in Black show up in their Ford Escalades to escort me off to Gitmo.  Well, as long as my fingers still keyboard reasonably well and I can stay awake anyhow.  lol.

Parenthetically, unfortunately I am going to have to close off the comments on the WordPress blog at least temporarily due to a massive problem I am having with SPAM at the moment.  However, the Diner Forum where all the really good in-depth commentary generally occurs remains live and active and relatively SPAM free (crosses fingers).  You are welcome to drop in there to leave your commentary and hopefully become a regular Diner and join us in our daily discussions of Collapse issues.

For now, I will leave you with one more video from the Cooking Zone, which starts out as a video on preparing Mushrooms to go with your Steak dinner, but morphs by the end into a RANT against the Internet Trolls who seem to follow me wherever I land on the net.  The price of popularity I suppose.

Collapse 2019 Survey: In the Words of the Kollapsniks

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Published on The Doomstead Diner February 3, 2019

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Survey still OPEN

Survey now @ 648 Submissions

Get your Opinion Counted  before you Go Extinct

We have begun the rather long and tedious process of digesting all the data accumulated in the 2019 Collapse Survey, which is to say the least COPIOUS.

Of interest to me first here was what Kollapsniks themselves had to say about how they thought about all these things in the Open Answer question at the end.  For this type of question, you can't really do a Quantitative Analysis, it's a Qualitative  impression that you get from reading the answers.  I was interested to see who took the questions seriously, and who just wrote snarky comments?  What websites did they come from?  If you read through these comments, you can figure that out for yourself and it is no surprise to me at all of course. lol.  Still, there are quite a few worthwhile and thoughtful comments and thoughts sprinkled in between the snark.

Here then, in the words of the Kollapsniks themselves is the story of the Collapse of Industrial Civilization as it will play out into the future.

 

20. ​On what website did you find a link to the 2019 Collapse Survey? 40. ​You may add your own comments and projections for Collapse in 2019 and beyond here
   
Reddit r/collapse Upcoming stair steps in the ongoing collapse: 2019 financial crisis, ~2025 global peak oil, ~2030 peak natural gas, ~2035 global average temperature anomaly of 1.5C.
Truth Dig (Chris Hedges) Smoke weed everyday
Reddit r/collapse People have the capacity to change things, but there's little hope that people will make meaningful change until things become visible on a level that directly impedes their day-to-day existence, at which point it'll probably be much too late. My main question is whether or not those who survive the collapse are able to build a new society that learns from the mistakes of ours.
Doomstead Diner Keep up the good work in 2019, best wishes for happiness in the darkening clouds of collapse!
Reddit r/collapse I have flown. It is not every year. Three times in my life return.
The Burning Platform Things are not getting better. Things will only get worse and they're getting worse at a quicker pace. We, Humans world wide, are in trouble within the next 2-5 years.
The Burning Platform The spectrum of subversive activities against the American people continues. Television, newspaper, radio, and mainstream media online outlets are relentlessly skewing and twisting information a particular way. Our people will need to recognize the threats to their health are constant and on multiple fronts. Long term power outages, interrupted services, and contaminated foods will be an increasing challenge in everyday life in the future.
The Burning Platform We are a morally bankrupt society
The Burning Platform You don't define or ask for a definition of what collapse is, in my opinion
The Burning Platform Slowly increasing collapse to 2025. Dramatic increase to 2030. Beginning of truly dire effects of climate change. Period of disease, violence starvation to 2070. Gradual adjustment to new circumstances. All varying in timeframe by area of the world.
The Burning Platform The future is the Left isn't stomped on: https://theamericansun.com/2018/12/16/pissearth-2025/
The Burning Platform Grab your ankles!
Ugo Bardi's The Seneca Effect FB group The most practical, lowest-tech renewable energy technology wasn't even on your list! Add solar thermal and passive solar buildings, FFS.
Facebook. I look forward to seeing the results.
Feedly Civil war and dissolution of the USA. Diversity + Proximity = War.
The Burning Platform TPTP are trying to take us into a planned collapse in 2019 to bring in Chaos and implement their NWO. Trump is trying to stop them and with God's help, the Deep State will end up in jail. The Super Grand Solar Minimum starts in a couple years and will be worse than the Little Ice Age; it will be a trial of Mankind almost like that of the Dinosaurs.
The Burning Platform Economic depression by 2020
The Burning Platform I am an unemployed Ph.D. I have been seeking full time employment for over 6 years. I survive through a combination of low paid part time jobs and public assistance. The welfare system is dysfunctional. The government is corrupt and dysfunctional. American corporations are corrupt and dysfunctional. I do not hold out a lot of hope for the future of the U.S. This country will collapse like the Soviet Union. However, the American people, unaccustomed to real hardship and lacking a sense of communal cohesion, will not fare as well as Russia did when it collapsed. There will be violence and bloodshed. The elites may launch a nuclear war rather than risk potential revolution.
The Burning Platform big problems ahead
The Burning Platform Economic reset
The Burning Platform You may have regional issues. But beyond open revolution things should stay fairly calm globally. Could be chaotic in localities.
The Burning Platform the human race is a virus
Reddit r/collapse I believe it is impossible to guess when we will go extinct
Reddit r/collapse I believe that progress on reducing starvation and malnutrition will be undone by famine and ecosystem collapse, particularly fish stocks. It may lead to mass migration in 5-10 years time.
The Burning Platform Peak prosperity website
The Burning Platform Better have some preps
The Burning Platform Collapse is U.S. and Europe specific
The Burning Platform bullshit
Doomstead Diner Your questions seem pretty biased towards "normal" people. Your ranking questions REALLY need a "stop here" option! Other questions sorely need an "other" option, such as #39, which I simply can't relate to — I have no investments, but can last indefinitely on the food I grow.
Reddit r/collapse I submitted part of the survey yesterday but got cut off in the middle due to accidentally hitting the "done" button. You should be able to tell which one it was by the similarity of the answer about nuclear. The POTUS candidates and the websites in the middle rankings will be different because I am unfamiliar with some of these and ranked highest and lowest by what I'd heard of.
The Burning Platform Balkanization of the USA with local/regional civil unrest.
face book link? Economic collapse seems inevitable but after a period of hardship with perhaps some chaos people will reorganize and be much more self sufficient.
Doomstead Diner You don't understand the term net worth. The question above references cash reserves, not net worth.
Doomstead Diner TV dinners are never a good choice
economic undertow Severe depression in 2019. Followed by lack of recovery due to resource depletion followed by war.
Our Finite World (Gail Tverberg) I believe initial collapse will be a financial one caused by  falling net energy. B. W. Hill has a believable model for one… or Dr. Morgan's SEEDS model. Broken supply chains, empty gas tanks and store shelves leading to a root hawg or die  Mad Max scenario. Get your sand rail and assless chaps ready now. Good luck…I need a drink.
The Burning Platform  
Doomstead Diner In the western world: lower living standards for most (taxes, food and energy costs), corresponding increase in petty crime (e.g. theft, trespass), more heavy-handed actions by state enforcers against the public, more corporate crimes and corruption without accountability. Cheers.
Doomstead Diner Reason Colin Powell write-in is order is needed, and I don't think he's a puppet of the elite. (am dual citizen/Canada; in US as grandkids are here)
Was sent a link I am honestly anticipating a more realistic "zombie apocalypse" in which some aggressive disease destroys the bulk of humanity. I'm betting on a mutated rabies or superflu.
Doomstead Diner What source of energy can provide the needed met energy? If it’s not nuclear fission or fusion then it’s nothing.
Economic Undertow (Steve Ludlum) They had it coming, they had it coming, all along. As you have been there, as you have seen it, we'll have all just done the same.
Reddit r/collapse Most of the questions have a built-in assumption that collapse is a reality….that's not a good survey approach and skews questions and answers.
Reddit r/collapse A staircase of tipping points that we never recover from as things get progressively worse.
Reddit r/collapse 12 years til apocalypse
Doomstead Diner Interesting too us focused as usual. Net worth question not enough categories.
Reddit r/collapse Here's hoping for a better one. Question 24 has all of it happening at once; we're ranking in minutes and not years.
Reddit r/collapse collapse is 'things getting very bad for most people ' , more dystopia / hardship that the elites will be able to avoid.
Reddit r/collapse A continued slow decline. The markets look shakey but at too hard to predict on any short term absis.
Reddit r/collapse humans have raped the earth and all its creatures, what can I say…
Our Finite World (Gail Tverberg) Most likely collapse will be slower than we suspect – my guess is collapse has already started (started in 2008) and will last 100+ years. I don't expect to retire though (I'm 31).
Where is Economic Undertow? Impoverishing the masses is simply conservation by other means. Wish the Breeders would…. STOP! But it ain't gonna happen. Collapse will be sudden and suck. At that point – I quit! No more electricity – gas – hot water – sewer or water….. and I think people forgot…. the diseases from the past will ravage populations when the sewage system quits…. https://theplumber.com/plagues-epidemics/ And besides – where I live – Ra(t)cine WI – it's gangbangers, Section 8, Single Mothers, and overpaid/compensated and early retired Gubbermint workers. Low slave wage paying jobs – lots of potential workers – but none who want to work. Lots of homeless – and Illinois keeps sending up more Gangsters for us to arrest – incarcerate – and provide free room and board for – with mighty expensive prisoner guards. I can make it check to check – and I live cheap! As for the Fox-Scam – it's all a Politicians lie: https://concernedracinecountyresidentsjustsaynotofoxconn.wordpress.com/2018/11/17/will-foxconn-lift-up-se-wi-or-lead-to-its-collapse/
Reddit r/collapse Die off
Doomstead Diner Human slave labor?
Doomstead Diner Monetary system Collapse is the most immediate threat, but monetary reformers are raising awareness about the banks’ debt-based money supply creation monopoly, and the simple solution of debt-free money issuance that can prevent monetary Collapse. The nutjobs in Washington could start a nuclear war. The pharmaceutical-industrial complex is already setting the stage for mass disease via poisonous vaccines. The aquifers are being pumped dry so water will be in short supply even before we run short of oil for energy. Climate change is happening, but not from us emitting CO2. A solar or cosmic event could annihilate us, before any of the man-made catastrophes have a chance to do it. Meanwhile in China, the people are feeling prosperous and optimistic because they live in a rising society while we live in a declining society.
Doomstead Diner It is a good time to be old(65). The insects are rare as are the migratory birds. My garden becomes less productive each year. Friends and family are dying of cancers and autoimmune diseases. The weather in South Carolina is bizarre. My hope is fading.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) In 2019, we'll see increasing global unrest, a massive global recession, a couple new conflicts overseas, and one or two catastrophic climate-related disasters.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) As Niels Bohr is credited with saying: Making predictions is hard, especially if they're about the future.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) yup
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) Nuclear weapons in the hands of despots during tumultuous energy scarce times is IMO the highest impact risk, aside from the slow grinding flywheel effect from climate change
Reddit r/collapse We are screwed.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) Collapse unlikely in 2019 (absent nuclear war) but certain before 2050.
Doomstead Diner The american centric aspect of this survey means a lot of it does not apply to my circumstances. I've seen on the doomstead site but needed to sign up to participate so I'm glad that Ugo posted it here.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) Elect Sam Carana! http://arctic-news.blogspot.com/
Reddit r/collapse Wish there were more opportunities for jobs to report on collapse or work to solve the problems. Also wish people would organize more and try to bring down the system that’s rapidly killing the natural world. This is the only planet we know that harbors life and were killing it.
Reddit r/collapse Good luck, homo sapiens is fucked
The Burning Platform I live on a small working farm and strive for self sufficiency daily. I have no debt and believe in hard assets, outside the Banksters as much as possible. My world view is Biblical. I'm a well armed clinger to quote the Petculent One.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) 2025 to 2030 probable range in my opinion. Many steps to collapse takes time. See a succession of regional collapses with migration, much pain and suffering, starvation, disease and violence. Sorry.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) believe gradual but bumpy decline in living standards
The Automatic Earth (Roel Mueller) The 1st world is in for a rude awakening,
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) I can't spend to much more time on projections for Collapse. I've run through pretty much all the scenarios I could over time, and the only thing of which I'm absolutely certain is that our current thermo-industrial civilisation is in ICU and about to flatline.
I work with other people in my community to try and find ways to leave something to work with for the people who will inherit whatever is left. A Buddhist text suggests that bodhisattvas live always with "their own death hanging like a pendant on their forehead." While I wouldn't call myself a Buddhist…I try to do that.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) Looks like we are in an early stage of this collaps. But I guess that we have to expect more and more chaos in the years ahed…
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) Question 24 is hard to rank because the triggers are contingent and most of those things are interrelated. The kinds of problems we face are much easier to predict that the timing.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) Humans may have pockets of life remaining after the climate destroys the ability to grow food but these will slowly decrease until there are no more people.
Doomstead Diner I plan to eat stupid people when things get bad; The only truly renewable resource…
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) We won't have long – the many religious zealots, big business types, insane idiots, uneducated, stupids are making terrible decisions that will curtail the future for all of us all too soon.
Doomstead Diner REDUNDANCY is the only way to succeed in nature. The most resilient animals have a variety of ways to do the same thing (eg: omnivores, amphibians), whereas niche animals are done when the niche is gone. Humans may yet manage to build a bridge across this huge cavernous hole we've dug ourselves BUT only if we build into a new system the most REDUNDANT ways to do EVERYTHING all of the time, in every area of our lives.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) The collapse of global energy use is very likely to remove the danger of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming.
The Burning Platform Markets remain volatile. Downsizing continues in businesses and eventually (within a few years) in government at last. Housing equities will drop as millions upon millions of boomers' homes flood the market when they retire and debt-ridden millenials, sans children and/or spouses, can't afford them. War is inevitable somewhere as the MIC fights to keep their coffers full–one of these wars will eventually put us near a WW3 type decision. The FSoA need to quit poking the Bear–eventually it will have had enough and quit taking "the high road" and retaliate or join the fray. Weather will be as it has been for thousands of years, cold spells, warm spells, floods, fires, hurricanes– if the solar minimum is as "Grand" as some predict, it may get much colder and food shortages as well as diseases may become larger issues than currently.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) Political, financial, social, cultural collapse is well under way as far as I can tell
The Burning Platform Hopefully, the Deep State goes down to a crushing defeat in 2019 as TINVOWOOT
Economic undertow I am hopeful that further financial chicanery can keep BAU going for a while longer. Once the jumbo conventional fields go into accelerated decline (likely 5-7% per annum), I think BAU is done.
Reddit r/collapse It can only go worse from here. Capitalism can't find a way out of the hole it has dug all of humanity into.
Economic Undertow Collapse is slow and ongoing. Things will get worse in 2019 but it isn't the end yet. Would love to see more states legalize cannabis!
Economic Undertow I expect a continued erosion and slide toward collapse.
The Burning Platform 2nd Great Depression is due. Followed by ww3. Non-nuclear conflict, until possibly its very end. New global order arises after. Sometime before 2100, another religious war – Christians et al. Vs sharia imposing Muslims.
Face book link? Society will survive until the weather patterns change enough to significantly reduce world-wide food production. People who live off the land might be able to survive for hundreds of years.
Our Finite World (Gail Tverberg) None
Truth Dig (Chris Hedges) Collapse is now. Ongoing. I think Dimitry Orlov said- It's just not evenly distributed yet. There are NO solutions except individual adaptation. Our capacity for organization and consensus decreases daily. Those with the most invested in the ongoing omnicide also have the most guns, bombs, missiles, and the predisposition to use them, being straight up psychopaths. They will actively and effectively challenge any attempt to turn collapse around. There is no guaranteed strategy for survival.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) Should be a rebound after first wave mass population drop collapse but worsening climate change will see a nuclear war
Reddit r/collapse This shit is making me depressed
Doomstead Diner It's definitely tough for older Americans to find employment especially in high tech.
Truth Dig (Chris Hedges) My main concern used to be environmental collapse, but the rapidity with which politics has replaced religion in the psyche of the average citizen of the "advanced nations" leads me to believe that something like a Holy War between the barely distinguishable factions of postmodern centrism may destroy large parts of the human race before total ecological collapse. I vacillate between fearing this outcome, and embracing a nuclear war premised on the narcissism of small differences as the only true hope for whatever remains of humanity in its wake. The most likely future that I can imagine is one that resembles the Black Mirror episode "Metalhead," in which automated systems of property defense have hunted mankind to extinction, and the last living human will die at the hands of machines in the name of the great god Property.
Truth Dig (Chris Hedges) A great or lesser depopulation seems likely. A re imagining of our specie will be necessary in any case.
https://www.economic-undertow.com/ I take history is my model and note that even after the Roman empire had clearly failed and become something entirely different many people hadn't gotten the message. We may be in the same trajectory, yeah everything will eventually be different and poorer and even, by current standards, post apocolyptic but they won't know and I will be gone by at least a few decades.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) "…slowly, then all at once…"
Reddit r/collapse everday feels hopeless and i struggle with suicidal thoughts knowing that i will most likely be collapse fodder.
facefart I can't last indefinitely on savings but I have over 3 years of savings. 10+. I'm lucky, not smart, clever, or ruthless.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) See Margaret Atwood's MaddAddam trilogy.
Reddit r/collapse This survey was way too American centric to bother trying to answer everything. And those ranking questions are impossible on phone.
Reddit r/collapse Keep up the good work and the discussion. There's a lot to be said. I've gotten past the worst and try to live a life of excellence knowing that stuff is going to get worse, while I still invest and save and work hard toward a future that may not arrive, I also work toward self sufficiency and farming and prepping for whatever happens down the road.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) I think we will face hard times and a population decline, but my thinkings on collapse are inflected by reading works by the likes of Joanna Macy, Charles Eisenstein, and Bayo Akomolafe. That is, I believe there is emergence and renewal in crisis.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) Question 27: There could be pockets of more advanced technology co-existing with much lower levels on average for quite some time. I expect something like a new feudalism to arise, perhaps with some legacy technology of an unpredictable nature. Question 39 doesn't have enough options. Who knows whether Social Security will be available in 20 years, and at my age anything (bad) can happen. I can't live, or last indefinitely, but at my age I don't have more than a couple decades left at best, and I can probably survive anything short of a major catastrophe for 20 year or more if I live that long and if my health holds out. (I'm old enough to retire, lucky enough to have a job, and too pessimistic to quit).
I think I'm mostly in agreement with Michael Greer in my view of the future. In my opinion the date of collapse or substantial decline is totally indeterminate at this time. Probably very serious, probably irreversible problems will arise by 2050; most of the world will be in an extremely distressed state by 2100, but with a few pockets of some affluence remaining, and probably nothing like "total" collapse until 2200 or later. After that is anyone's guess. Depends on how many bad (or less likely good) decisions are made in the next 25 – 30 years, or whether there is nuclear war or a major pandemic. When things get bad enough those with enough to lose may allow change and probably have enough collective power to keep the human race going at a much lower technological level, though probably too little too late. Things are still salvageable, but we are quickly running out of time to make meaningful adjustments.
Our Finite World (Gail Tverberg) Not in 2019 but it's effects will be visible for public in te fall 2019
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) Stop the growth of the world population …. immediately
The Automatic Earth (Roel Mueller) Since you reference a large variety of blogs worldwide , you could be less US centric. eg regions.thanks for the blog list. The sorting function while cool was a PITA. I tried but it wasn't the the final I wwould have chosen.
Reddit r/collapse A long boring and slow collapse provided we do not nuke ourselves.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Capitalism continues to push BAU for as long as the masses allow it.

 

Basically, we run ourselves into the ground with hubris, and denialism.

 

Things are bad in developing nations.

 

For the developed world, things get truly crazy in the 2030's

Doomstead Diner Too many mooks. They need to be exterminated. This will happen. Then we can go for the stars, our destiny.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) There is too much we don't know, how much accessable, affordable fossil resources are left?, will we bumble into nuclear war?, will we be overrun by illegal migrants?, will our crops soon fail leading to mass starvation?, will the ecosystem fail because we have destroyed too much of it?
The oceans are dying, birds, whales & other sea life is being starved to death with bellies full of indigestable PLASTIC, the O2 level is declining even as the C02 & methane levels are rising, insects are a keystone species, I see very few insects or spiders any more & Swallows don't breed here any longer.
We are in deep doo doo!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

(BTW, I don't have a TV, radio here is almost non existent, we only have a small, local news paper twice a week. The internet is my main source of "news". I have no debt, no loans, no morgage, no children BY CHOICE, no family, all debts are paid up each month. "Voting" for corrupt politicians in fake, rigged "elections" is a waste of time. )

 

Americans are so dam IGNORANT & too many are STUPID, people here actually BELIEVE that there is an invisible "man" in the sky who "made" everything only 6000 years ago! No wonder we are doomed to collapse!

 

There are too dam many of us & more are on the way, without affordable OIL, we will not be able to feed 7.6 billion humans & oil is going away & those who believe that oil dependent "renewables" can replace oil are IDIOTS!
I wish they would stop pushing "renewables" as the solution to our overpopulation, energy, pollution & excessive demand delema, "renewables" are just another way to PROFIT from fossil resources.
What is needed is #1. BAN ONE USE PLASTICS, take down most dams, FORCE a drastic reduction of the human population, forced birth control/sterilizations as needed,( you can't reason with believers.) a drastic reduction in our use of fossil resources (rationing) & the training of millions of organic farmers & farm workers, break up mega factory "farms", we need to stop eating fish, eat less meat & stop buying stuff we don't actually NEED, ban clear cutting of our forests, end hunting & trapping, ban meat eating pets except working animals like sled dogs & cats to keep down pests in the barn. The young need to relearn the old ways of living on the land in in ballence with nature & our resources.

 

We will collapse & I do not expect us to reach that 10 billion, probably not even 8 billion, the few survivors if any, will have a tough time surviving in a world getting hotter each year with more droughts, more floods, more nasty weather of all stripes & diseases we can no longer treat or cure (diabetics are also doomed.) & with billions of desperate people migrating & struggling to survive any way they can.

 

Got a recipe for "long pig" the new "sustainable" meat?

 

Even worse than the stupidity & ignorance of most 'mericans are our stupid, greedy, IGNORANT RULERS who are still calling for more dam GROWTH!
Growth is the problem not the solution.

Reddit r/collapse  
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi)  
Economicundertow Log-log power law makes prediction difficult and imprecise. Collages will happen, it's the size of the Avalanche that is uncertain!
Economic Undertow Good survey but politics = irrelevant
economic undertow likely to be a rolling worldwide collapse due to economic, cultural, climatic, environmental, social and black swan catastrophes in unknown order, likely happening simultaneously at the present time.
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) http://www.lulu.com/shop/risa-bear/starvation-ridge/paperback/product-21383506.html
Doomstead Diner great survey!
Doomstead Diner the decline of the Roman empire was not obvious at the time – historians will decide the actual collapse year – assuming any are left alive !
surplus energy economics no comm
Reddit r/collapse Economic meltdown 2019~2020
Societal collapse by 2040
Reddit r/collapse I think we'll see some widespread social unrest in the U.S., probably with protests, maybe some riots and some military or militarized police response to them. There will be more and more homeless people, and we may see a sharp uptick in deaths from suicide, overdose, exposure, and starvation/malnutrition. We'll also see more murders by extremists, probably against people of color. It's possible we'll see a whole region or city fall under martial law if something significant happens, like L.A. running out of potable water. I think it's unlikely we'll see a total breakdown of rule of law in 2019.
Reddit r/collapse Collapse is slow and ruthless. The upper and middle classes must live on far less now or live on next to nothing in a few decades.
Reddit r/collapse short term societal collapse may lead to the freeing up of important resources which can lead to a technological rebound, that with optimal outcomes may see our survival in one form or another into the 22nd century. however this is unlikely
Reddit r/collapse Just pull yourself up by the bootstraps and get yourself into the parasitic ruling capitalist class so you can crush the dissenters with highly militarised police while you live luxuriously off the backbone of human suffering and misery.
Reddit r/collapse Nothing about diet or how much we are individually contributing (or not) to this mess? We'll see the rise of veganism as environmentally necessary, better for personal health and as the public comes around the obvious morality will creep into the spotlight. Still, this is all way too little, too late. But really, if you eat, drive, fly, have children, etc: what is your excuse and how do you excuse these evils while preaching any sort of moral high ground (ie: "I recycle but could never stop driving, that's taking it too far")
Reddit r/collapse 1) Interesting, but what's the point, really? 2) The survey questions and requests that allow for no "other response" are often too limited or leading.
Reddit r/collapse bumpy ride up ahead, mainly politically and economically
Doomstead Diner, but the link was bad so I accessed it from Economic Undertow  
Our Finite World (Gail Tverberg) Fun to speculate about, but unlikely that anyone will see it coming in the exact form it will take…
Reddit r/collapse born to die world is a fuck yeeet
Reddit r/collapse I'm afraid that a lot of people who have never really known true hardship, like starvation, is going to feel it these coming 20 years. That is going to kickstart a lot of other processes, like with everything else on earth.
Reddit r/collapse Low tech is the future! Negative growth economy!
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) Peak oil 2021-2, terminal decline of oil output recognized 2025 as it approaches 5%/yr. Rolling series of financial crisis as debt collapses throughout the 2020-2030 timeframe. The baseline scenerio of "Limits to Growth" will be surprising accurate.
Doomstead Diner collapse is 100% certain when is 100% uncertain
Cassandra's Legacy (Ugo Bardi) I believe a perfect storm of environmental stressors will be the proximate cause for collapse (i.e. Sixth Mass Extinction, Over-Population, Deforestation, Ocean Acidification, Coral Bleaching, Over-Fishing, Oceanic Dead Zones, Poaching, Desertification, Water scarcity, Resource Scarcity, Invasive Species, Emerging Diseases/Syndromes like Colony Collapse Disorder, White Nose Syndrome, Chytrid).
Economic Undertow The Car is the greatest threat to humanity.
Reddit r/collapse Many reasons for collapse in this survey that asked for ranking are relatively equal in probability of happening my estimate, but are also intertwined with each other, so once one happens the others will follow behind.
Doomstead Diner it's not looking good…

 

 

 

My Alien Revelation

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Published on The Doomstead Diner on January 2, 2019

Discuss this article at the Collapse Narratives Table inside the Diner

by Geoffrey Chia, January 2019

The following narrative was telepathically transmitted to me in the form of dreams, by an alien historian named Angel Moron from his home planet three million light years away. Moron the historian took me to a cave where he showed me gold plates inscribed in alien script which he translated into English for me. Unfortunately the gold plates mysteriously vanished after that. I found Moron's appearance remarkably human for an alien. He found my appearance remarkably yuman for an alien.

PART 1: In which the most urgent threat to life on planet Dearth is identified:

A long, long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, there was a nondescript planet called Dearth which orbited a nondescript star called Sol. The planet was called Dearth because there was a dearth of intelligent life to be found there. This was amply demonstrated by two facts: first, the apex predator species of that planet were furiously destroying their environmental life support systems in the frenzied pursuit of short term greed. Second, those idiots hubristically called themselves Homo Smartypants. Such absurd irony was lost on everyone apart from the very few true sapients among the populace. Some of the sapients, called scientists, had conclusively proven, using irrefutable evidence and reason, that their species, also called Yuman Beings, had evolved from ape like creatures three million years ago and that all of them, without exception, derived their sustenance from the natural environment, without which they would perish. These facts were conveniently ignored or forgotten by the apex predator nation on that planet, which (not ironically) called itself the Un-tied1 States of Amnesia or the "exceptional ones". Most Amnesiacs believed that Homo Smartypants were created supernaturally six thousand years ago by a bearded man on a cloud and the source of their intelligent trousers was a magical apple eaten by the first smartypants woman (who at the time lacked pants, intelligent or otherwise).

Allied to, perhaps even controlling the Un-tied States, was a small country across the ocean called Brian, where, some said, lived and died a Messiah two thousand years ago. Others however said he was not a Messiah, he was just a very naughty boy. Brian was called the original homeland of the Juice, because they grew lots of oranges there. Not all Juice-ish people were Brianists, indeed many among the diaspora of the Juice opposed the violent creation of Brian seventy years ago by the murderous expulsion (nowadays called "ethnic cleansing") of existing Arid inhabitants who had lived there many generations. They were called Arids because their land was very dry. Secular Juice who were non-Brianists (such as Choam Nomsky and Klaomi Nein) were considered fair minded, righteous and decent Yumanists by the sapients. They were considered traitors by the Brianists. Original ownership of that arid real estate was hotly disputed. Divine right of possession was claimed by religious Juice because they said they were the "chosen people" of the one true imaginary God, who had promised it to them. So it was written in their Holy Book, which was somehow conveniently derived from that very same imaginary God. It was such a convincing story, not self-serving at all mind you, that you simply had to take their word for it. Of course, the Brianists had absolutely no proof for their claim, only very intense, very insistent repetition, backed up by nuclear weapons.

Both the US of Amnesia and the Brianists were deadly keen to bomb the country of Eeran, which had lots of Spice2, an incredibly valuable transport fuel and major source of wealth, that they wanted to control. The US used relentless propaganda to deceitfully slander and demonise the Eeranians as terrorists, even though in reality it was actually the US which, by repeatedly funding and arming fanatical extremists in their proxy wars, had promoted and empowered the worst terrorists in the world.

Anyhoo, the campaign to bomb Eeran was rightly seen by the rest of the world as perfidiously insane and morally despicable. Among the most deranged chickenshit armchair warmongers was an Amnesiac named John Bolturd who sported a flamboyantly bushy Yosemite Sam moustache, as befitted an outlandish cartoon villain. He would have been laughably comical had he not been such a dangerous turd. Bolturd had been appointed to his position by the Amnesiac in chief, an orange syphilitic conman named Ronald Gump.

What would be the consequences of criminally bombing Eeran for no fucking reason whatsoever, apart from greed and stupidity? First, Eeran would respond by mining and blockading the Straits of Hummus, a strategic chokepoint, preventing the export of much needed Spice to the rest of the world and causing global economic collapse. Second, Eeran, acting in legitimate self defence, would launch retaliatory missiles against Brian. Third, this would lead to further bombing of Eeran by Brian and/or the US of A. Fourth, the empire of the Rus and the empire of Xanadu3 who sorely needed Spice, would, bound by their security treaty, come to the aid of Eeran. Things would rapidly escalate with the use of tactical, then intercontinental nuclear weapons, causing the quick extinction of Homo Smartypants, along with most other life on Dearth. All because a tiny number of unelected4, racist, bigoted, criminally insane, lying fuckwits such as John Bolturd, egged on by their counterparts in Brian, had hijacked US foreign policy.

So what actually happened to planet Dearth? That was, you remember, a long, long time ago.

 

PART 2: In which the only feasible solution to protect Yumanity from nuclear Armageddon is devised, with all ethical implications considered:

Enter a US gazillionaire named Franklin Delankin5 Rankin. FDR was one of the very few sapients among the Amnesiacs. He was determined to do good in the world, almost as a penance for a guilty conscience. FDR's mind boggling fortune was not accumulated by him personally, it was inherited entirely from three previous generations, from a family that had engaged in dodgy banking, ruinous usury and money laundering. The Rankins were joined at the hip to the military industrial complex and had funded both sides of every war for the past 100 years. FDR's family were composed entirely of black sheep, however he himself was an aberration, the only white sheep in four generations and, as it turned out, the greatest shame of the Rankin dynasty. FDR showed no inkling of any dogooder tendencies when young, being a quiet, observant, reflective lad, who watched how his elders operated and learned the tactics of predatory capitalism and murderous plunder with growing revulsion. He developed increasing contempt for the lavish indulgent lifestyles enjoyed by his peers, a privileged minority with an overweening sense of entitlement, while 95% of the world's population lived in hunger, insecurity and hardship. He spent much of his time reading philosophical tomes, especially the teachings of Siddharta. The first overt sign that things were not “right” with FDR was his marriage to a social worker named Elinor with whom he eventually had 3 children and 8 grandchildren, all of whom they schooled in the principles of yumanistic ethics. As a champion of the poor, the oppressed and people of colour, Elinor was a terrible influence on FDR. FDR bided his time when growing up, pretending to be a loyal tribe member, until his inheritance was absolutely confirmed, following which he went about dismantling the entire rancid Rankin empire to fund projects to alleviate poverty and disease afflicting the most disadvantaged people around the world. His relatives were appalled by his bleeding heart behaviour which was bleeding away their family fortune. To them he represented the most vile creature imaginable: a class traitor. They made many attempts to assassinate him, one which caused the loss of his legs in a bomb blast, leaving him wheelchair bound. Shortly after, FDR redoubled his bodyguards and intensified his security detail. FDR surrounded himself with carefully vetted, like minded leftist socialist types who exhibited absolute loyalty, not so much to him personally (he despised yes men), but to the higher common values and goals they shared: the promotion of social justice around the world and the opposition to illegitimate warfare and arbitrary murder of innocents, perpetrated by the rapacious robber baron class that FDR had been born into. Those in FDR's inner circle trusted one another implicitly, having weathered many trials and tribulations together. They were a tight knit, tight lipped group of confidantes. Every last one of them would, in a heartbeat, die for their cause and for each other, in their fight against Evil in the world and in their mission to alleviate the suffering of the downtrodden.

Having spent the past three decades of his life in philanthropy, FDR turned his mind to the greatest immediate threat to life on the planet: that of nuclear Armageddon. He was a problem solver who looked for solutions. In his experience, problems could only be solved by addressing the underlying causes. He engaged a multidisciplinary research team of sapients who used evidence and reason to analyse world issues. They demonstrated conclusively that it was just a tiny group of fuckwits known as the Neoconartists (John Bolturd being a particularly foul example) who were behind the worst mayhem, violence, murder, injustice and destruction in the world.

war orphans: a regrettable externality but necessary requirement of the Neocon business model  AKA “freedom and democracy”

Despite the Neocons attempts to demonise other parties as aggressors6, it was just the Neocons and only the Neocons alone, who were insane enough to consider a “winnable” pre-emptive nuclear strike and to trigger global thermonuclear war by way of their swaggering, blowhard, reckless brinkmanship. Hence the only option was to neutralise them. How could that be done?

FDR looked at the activities of antinuclear campaigners over the decades, people he admired immensely such as Dr Celen Haldicott, whose tireless efforts unfortunately amounted to exactly nothing. Clearly persuasion, reason and logical arguments, combined with plaintive emotional appeals, whether directed towards politicians or to the general public, did not work. Democracy no longer existed, having been hijacked by vested interests whose highly profitable (short term) business models were based on environmental destruction and perpetual warfare. The world was now poised at two minutes to Armageddon, as described by the clock of the Bulletin of Atomic Sapients. Drastic action was required urgently, failing which, yumanity was toast.

After thorough, meticulous analysis, FDR's sapient research team concluded that it was impossible to disempower or remove the Neoconartists by legal, peaceful and non-violent means. All the legal, peaceful and non-violent avenues for change, the checks and balances, had been completely dismantled by the corrupt “masters of the universe” (bankers, corporatists, arms dealers, etc) over the past few decades. Furthermore, there was no time left. The only feasible way to defuse the risk of imminent nuclear extinction was to eliminate the Neoconartists. Being a circumspect thinker however, FDR consulted a close confidante, a professor of ethics named Seter Pinger who was asked to look at the situation from all angles. Was killing always a crime? By engaging in targeted assassination, would that make FDR as bad as his foes? As a lifelong non-violent Yumanist, would the adoption of violence to achieve his goal make him a hypocrite?

Professor Pinger addressed the last question first in a roundabout way. One of the greatest existential threats to yumanity was global warming from Spice emissions, factually proven by overwhelming scientific research dating back a hundred years. However the existence of GW was vehemently denied by the Neocons because it damaged their business model. Hence they called the scientists liars, fraudsters, hoaxers and all round bad people. Many scientists responded by calling the Neocons themselves liars, fraudsters, hoaxers and all round bad people. In the “fair and balanced” Pox News, the scientists were portrayed as being just as bad as the Neocons because both sides were using ad hominem attacks, which made the so-called objective scientists hypocrites. Such criticism caused many scientists to temper their language and retreat to the dry citation of facts and figures, which had a soporific effect on the general public. This was a mistake by the scientists and a victory for the deniers because it enabled the latter to continue to slander and libel the scientists unopposed, while the scientists were cowed into fighting with both hands tied behind their backs. By definition, the scientists were not using ad hominem attacks, because objective data had proven that the Neocons were indeed telling lies and were therefore truly liars, fraudsters, hoaxers and all around bad people. The scientists were merely employing accurate description and were calling a spade a spade. The Neocons, by slandering and misrepresenting the scientists, were the only side using ad hominem attacks. The researcher Aomi Noreskes who wrote the book “The Merchants of Denial” actually castigated the scientists for not attacking and denigrating the global warming deniers strongly enough and for failing to hold the deceitful Neocons to account.

Professor Pinger then highlighted a recent atrocity in the news: the brutal assassination by dismemberment of journalist Jamal Ghashokki, ordered by the petulant despot Mahmoud Bone Sawman. What made that act a despicable crime? Firstly the victim was innocent of any wrongdoing, he was merely doing his job reporting news. Secondly, that crime was motivated entirely by the tyrannical self serving agenda of Bone Sawman who wanted to halt Ghashokki's criticism and send an intimidating message to other journalists. By the way, that murder was also an example of the worst ever botched cover-up of all time, lacking any subtlety or any plausible deniability, unlike the more covert, measured manoeuvrings of Pladimir Vutin, leader of the Rus.

If FDR was to commission the targeted assassination of Neoconartists, would that make him as evil as Bone Sawman and Vutin? Actually, no. Unlike those tyrants, FDR would be eliminating known murderers and warmongers, not killing innocent journalists. Furthermore FDR was not driven by any self serving motivations but by the protection of Yumanity and civilisation. Furthermore, no non-violent alternative options were available.

Next, Pinger described a school assignment given to all children in Brian at the age of thirteen. It was a rite of passage. They had to write an essay titled “What would I do if I could travel back in time?” Those who submitted bland narratives such as “I would have dinner with the prophet Isa and discuss the meaning of life” were invariably failed by their teachers. Only one type of answer could ever earn an “A” and it was this: “I would go back in time and kill Shitler”. Essays were graded according to how creative they were in arranging Shitler's demise. Shitler was of course the historical leader of the Nutsy party that governed the nation of Germs eighty years ago who launched a global war that killed 50 million people worldwide. In particular, he methodically exterminated six million Juice in death camps. Killing Shitler then would have been a crime according to Nutsy law at the time, however the Nutsies were a bunch of self serving thugs who had contrived a so-called legal system which was unjust, immoral and bogus. Their laws (eg. institutional racism and legal protection of racists – akin to the Crim Joe laws of the Southern US) were not legitimate because they could not pass any tests of natural justice, which were determined by the universal common standards of ethics. Those standards were summarised by two complementary principles found in all moral codes everywhere throughout all the known universe, throughout all of known history. They were the Golden Rules: do unto others as you would have others do unto you, and do not do unto others as you would not have others do unto you. Nobody in the modern world 80 years after the global war would, in retrospect, regard killing Shitler as a crime, indeed, quite the opposite. It was clear that the Juice themselves, in particular the Brianist Juice, considered the murder of a mass murderer to be a righteous and ethical act.

So killing was not always a crime. But would killing Shitler before he provoked war, before he proved himself to be a mass murderer, be a crime? As such, would killing the Neoconartists before they actually provoked global thermonuclear war, be a crime? Fortunately this was not an ethical conundrum because the Neoconartists had already proven themselves to be mass murderers. They were on the record of having perpetrated numerous invasions and wars based on lies which had caused the deaths of many millions of innocents. The fact that the US legal system had not brought the Neocons to justice simply proved that their so-called legal system was unjust, immoral and bogus, indeed, criminally negligent and complicit in war crimes.

But was not this very argument, that it is ethical to murder a murderer, one of the justifications the Neoconartists themselves used to kill Sodom Hussein of Eeraq? That the killing of Sodom, a proven murderer, was an ethical act by the Neocons to prevent him from murdering more innocent Eeraqis? Taken in isolation, perhaps. But knowing the big picture, absolutely not. Such devious, distorted, cherry picking of facts was typical of the Neoconartist liars. Firstly the Neocons were completely disingenuous. They were never remotely interested in protecting innocent Eeraqis, as evidenced by their previous imposition of sanctions which had killed more than half a million innocent Eeraqi children and their previous bombing of Eeraqi civilian infrastructure. Irrefutable facts had shown that the only reason for the US to invade Eeraq was to control that country's Spice. Secondly, if one's goals are to protect innocent lives and to minimise yuman suffering, then real world utilitarian ethics must be adopted. In messy reality, it is impossible to protect every single innocent life and there is never a perfect option. If the choice lies between preventing a million innocent civilian deaths caused by US invasion (which led to the destabilisation and collapse of Eeraq) and preventing a thousand deaths caused by Sodom (who however had kept Eeraq stable and functional, thus benefiting the vast majority of the population), then without doubt avoiding invasion is a thousand times superior. This consideration was the same as deciding about a medical intervention: if the adverse effects of an intervention are a thousand times worse than the disease itself, then obviously the intervention must be avoided and one must adopt some other form of disease management. You do not chop off a person's head to remove a mole on their forehead (unless you are a Neocon looking for an excuse to kill that person).

There was no doubt that FDR's aim was to protect and preserve innocent lives, as evidenced by his past three decades of philanthropy. What was at stake here? What did Yumanity stand to lose if the Neocons were allowed to continue their outrageously belligerent behaviour and provoke global thermonuclear war? All of civilisation, every single Yuman life on the planet, all future Yuman generations, all Yuman achievements in art, literature, culture, music, science, indeed all knowledge, would be wiped out forever if the Neocons were allowed to pursue their insanity to its inevitable conclusion. Compared with any theoretical ethical objection about killing a handful of proven murderers, the choice was an absolute no-brainer. Ultimately however, the biggest motivation driving FDR was his determination to ensure the future survival of his children and grandchildren on a planet which was not a seething radioactive wasteland.

 

PART 3: In which Yumanity miraculously escapes near term nuclear extinction

What transpired next was a mixture of rumour, innuendo and conjecture.

This much however we do know: in the year that followed, the worst Neoconartists mysteriously perished in a wide variety of ways. Some died in their sleep, some apparently committed suicide by jumping off buildings or bridges or by overdosing on prescription pills or illicit drugs. Some died in road traffic or aircraft accidents. One character shot himself in the head. Twice.

The prize for the most memorable mode of departure belonged to John Bolturd. He had a number of private fetishes little known to the public, one of them being pica (the ingestion of dirt), a recognised medical condition. He had a penchant for scoffing up all manner of fecal detritus. On the occasion of his death he was found in a toilet having apparently choked on a clump of bovine excrement. Every year since then, on the anniversary of his death, a person or persons unknown regularly delivered this engraved plaque by drone to his cemetery plot:

Here lies John Bolturd who was true to his name:

He died while bolting down a turd.

He lived by spewing out bullshit and died by choking on bullshit.

May he rest in piss.

The son of Moron the historian wrote an essay about Bolturd's death for his school assignment and received an A+.

The following is Angel Moron's unsubstantiated opinion about what actually happened, which however he was unable to prove, lacking any objective documentation:

In FDR's efforts to increase his personal security team, he recruited more than just bodyguards. In the interviews conducted by his staff, they encountered many ex-military personnel who were bitter at the system for having betrayed them. Many had been deployed overseas when they were young, trusting and naïve, believing they were going to spread democracy and freedom around the world and were going to help those in need. Instead they were forced, under duress from their superiors7, to commit acts of brutality and oppression against the local populations, even to torture and murder innocent people including women and children. Such atrocities shattered their images of themselves as good people and fomented self loathing. After their return to the US of A, many committed suicide from guilt or embarked on mass shootings followed by suicide. The remaining survivors slowly worked through their psychological trauma to eventually understand that they had been hoodwinked by the crooks in charge of the system to commit war crimes to benefit those very crooks. They realised that the system was rotten because it had been distorted and perverted by those at the very top, who were rotten to their core. Many disillusioned, skint ex-service personnel were not just looking for employment. Above all, they were looking for redemption, for some way to hit back at their manipulators, to do serious damage to those psychopaths who had lied to them, exploited them and forced them to commit horrific atrocities. To seek vengeance and closure for their foreign victims and their families. Among those returned personnel were many skilled in electronic surveillance, intelligence gathering, covert operations and even with special knowledge of poisons, explosives and alternative methods of killing.

Speculation: were they recruited by FDR, not particularly for his own protection but for a wider purpose?

Whereas foul play could never be proven in any of the deaths of the Neoconartists, the manner of their deaths looked like classic examples taken from the assassination handbook of the Central Intelligence Administration. The Neocon deaths were spookily reminiscent of those which befell foreign leaders who had stubbornly refused to do the bidding of the US of A and then conveniently perished in “accidents”, to be quickly replaced with compliant Amnesiac puppets. They were the very same assassination tactics the CIA taught would-be foreign tyrants in the “School of the Amnesiacs” at Fort Lemming, Borgia. Many historians deemed it poetic justice that the Neocons appeared to have been killed by the very same methods the Neocons themselves had used to kill others. Some considered it Divine Retribution.

Of course, that was all just rumour, innuendo and conjecture.

With the Neocons out of the picture, more moderate voices were able to take over US foreign policy and the risk of global nuclear war subsided. Furthermore, the US administration finally admitted that global warming was real and was a major problem and they might, someday, possibly consider the theoretical idea of discussing non-binding emissions caps with other nations. At some future date.

Regional conflicts did break out around the world in the decades to follow, but no party was ever insane or reckless enough to be the first to push the nuclear button.

 

PART 4: In which ecological overshoot results in the massive die-off of Yuman beings, but complete extinction is avoided by advanced planning

FDR was well aware of the Limits to Growth, of the multiple threats to yuman survival posed by nuclear warfare, overpopulation, rampant overconsumption, resource depletion, global warming, pollution and ecosystem destruction. Having greatly reduced the risk of the first factor8, FDR set about devising strategies by which near term yuman extinction could be avoided, taking the advice of his scientific team. He realised it was impossible to save everyone and billions would inevitably die in the coming decades, but if just a few thousand were able to survive through the population bottleneck, Yumanity could eventually re-establish themselves on the planet in the long term. One key measure was to robustly preserve multiple independent (non-electronic) archives of all yuman scientific and cultural achievements that could outlast the entire duration of the upcoming dark ages, which would probably be several thousand years. Script engraved by laser on gold plates with marine grade stainless steel backing was one method.

FDR knew that the long term projections for global warming were catastrophic, perhaps a 10 degree Centigrade global average temperature rise over the next century, which would render almost the entire planet uninhabitable. By sheer dumb luck however, planet Dearth just happened to have a massive continent in the South polar region, currently ice bound, which would eventually thaw and allow for livable ambient temperatures. The biggest challenges would be coping with six months of darkness per year and with superstorms fed by heat energy. Despite those issues, he knew that 70 million years ago, when the global average temperature was indeed around 10 degrees higher, plants and large animals thrived on that south polar continent (which had not moved significantly over time, unlike the continental drift of other land masses). Hence yuman survival there was technically possible. The tricky question at present was how to go about mitigating against the massive ecological and climatic upheavals which were now proceeding thousands of times faster than had ever occurred in geologic history.

There was one other major consideration, perhaps the greatest of all. If yumanity did manage to live through the critical period of the next several thousand years (which was how long it would take for carbon dioxide to draw down and for ecosystems to recover) it would be necessary to ensure that future yumans never again endanger the life support systems of the planet. This would require restraints on yuman population and consumption, closed loop utilisation of resources and most important of all, elimination of psychopaths from the population should they arise once again to threaten yuman survival.

The details of how yumanity coped are a long story best left for another time.

  • transcribed by G. Chia via telepathy from an alien historian, January 2019

FOOTNOTES:

  1. Some preferred to use the term un-hinged rather than un-tied

  2. There were five different types of Spice, each with different energy levels: Scary, Sporty, Ginger, Posh and Baby. They had their heyday many years ago, hence by the time in question, Baby Spice had long passed peak production, was facing a decline in EROEI and was now renamed Old Spice.

  3. In Xanadu did Kubla Khan, a stately pleasure dome decree,

Where Alph the sacred river ran,

Through caverns measureless to man,

Down to a sunless sea

      • S.T. Coleridge

  1. Not elected by any democratic, fair, transparent process anyway. Elections were rigged by the GOP (Gas and Oil Party) using corrupt tactics to install corporate compliant candidates and create an illusion of democracy which was believed only by stupid people.

  2. You may quite reasonably ask, “what the hell kind of a name is Delankin?” to which I respond “what the hell kind of a name is Delano?”

  3. Facilitated by their media whore Rabid Murdoch and his pestilent team of talking heads on Pox News

  4. Soldiers who defied orders would face the following consequences: court martial, dishonourable discharge, blacklisting against future employment, hence inability to earn any future income, hence inability to repay their college student loans, hence default of their debts, hence seizure of their family homes by the banks, hence ending up homeless and destitute. The senior officers made those consequences of disobedience abundantly clear to each new cohort on the first day of their foreign deployment and cited several examples of former defiant recruits whose lives (and the lives of their families) were ruined “with extreme prejudice”. Entrapment of young people into debt slavery was a highly effective strategy to ensure their obedience to authority.

  5. His approach was almost clinical, akin to saving the life of a critically ill patient in an intensive care unit. Numerous threats faced the patient, but priority had to be given to the most immediate and urgent issue, in this case nuclear extinction. Certainly other matters such as global warming were potentially fatal threats, but GW would take longer to unfold to its full extent. It was inappropriate to focus exclusively on the “slower burning” threat, if the more urgent threat was going to kill the patient immediately.

 

 

This Week In Doom Feb. 6, 2019


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Originally published on the Doomstead Diner on February 3, 2019

What you’re seeing and what you’re reading is not what’s happening.” ― Individual-1  

“The party told you to reject the evidence of your eyes and ears. It was their final, most essential command.”                                   ― George Orwell, 1984


After two years, the constant drumbeat of incessant lying emanating from the White House is taking a toll. Having surpassed 8,000 lies in office, Individual-1 has managed to numb the news-following public into wholesale stupefaction. But it's all part of a conscious plan to control each day's news cycle, sow doubt, and discredit reporters of objective fact, including members of his own administration.

Last week Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats presented a summary of espionage and cyber threats from Russia, China and other foreign actors during congressional testimony. The published Worldwide Threat Assessment report (written in straightforward, accessible prose, and worth reading), outlines the greatest threats to the US for espionage and cyber-attacks. Little surprise that foreign governments will act in their own self interest, and at the expense of the US as when necessary.

CIA Director Gina Haspel, FBI Director Christopher A. Wray and other top officials joined Coats in a discussion that covered a wide array of national security challenges, including cyber attacks that will aim to disrupt the 2020 presidential election and the continued threat posed by the Islamic State and other terrorist groups.

Coats, speaking on behalf of the assembled officials, gave a global tour of national security challenges, focused mainly on Russia, China, Iran and North Korea.

He said that North Korea was “unlikely to completely give up its nuclear weapons and production capabilities,” which the country’s leaders consider “critical to the regime’s survival.”

Putting his assessment at variance with that of Individual-1, and the Tweets subsequently emanating from the Fox News-infused Oval Office and the alternate reality zone in the mind of the occupant. 

Without forgetting for a moment the roles that US intelligence agencies have played in repression at home and regime change abroad, all for the benefit of US corporate interests, the threat assessment is a clear description of the US's primary international rivalries, and nothing in it was surprising if you follow the headlines. None of the officials affirmed a security crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border, where Trump may yet declare a national emergency. 

Cold water was repeatedly thrown on the White House’s more imaginative views, such as the claim that the US and North Korea will achieve a lasting peace and that Kim's regime will ultimately give up its nuclear weapons.

Glossed over by most media, during a week when temps in the midwest and east broke well below freezing, was the mention of how Russia and China are capable of launching cyber-attacks that could disrupt electric grids and gas pipelines in the US.  Even Rachel Maddow noticed and interviewed Rebecca Smith, who covered the story for the Wall Street Journal. Maddow asked,

“What would happen if Russia killed the power in Fargo today? What would you do if you lost heat indefinitely as the act of a foreign power on the same day the temperature in your backyard matched the temperature in Antarctica?”

As to Russia's cyberdiddling, it has been known for some time that Russia has been probing our grid. On March 15, the US government released a report describing a massive Russian hacking campaign to infiltrate America’s “critical infrastructure” — things like power plants, nuclear generators, and water facilities. The Russian incursions reported in March were more for observation than sabotage, but as we've seen, the Trump administration's response to Russian impunity has been to lift sanctions on close friends of Putin.

When the report was released last June, Energy Secretary Rick Perry told lawmakers she that Russian cyber-attacks are “literally happening hundreds of thousands of times a day,” and warned that the Department of Energy needs an “office of cybersecurity and emergency response” in order to be prepared for threats like this in the future.

None of this sat well with Il Douche. For the last two years we've had a president who fundamentally does not believe in democracy, with no loyalty to either the Constitution or the traditions of American governance. This week, he demonstrated a visceral contempt for the work product of the intelligence community, oblivious to the fact that many of the conclusions in the report had already been publicized by his own government.

 

Trump maintains his power via Republican control in the Senate, where any impeachment proceeding would be tried. And no matter what they may say privately, Republican Senators are well aware of the fact that Citrus Caligula runs at 90 per cent approval among Republican voters, who make up 20 percent of the population but 100 per cent of Republican primary voters.

Little by little, the media has been figuring out how to deal with Trump's incessant lying, a different thing from the spinning of any previous administration. Greg Sargent explains:

The key point here is that Trump is not engaged in conventional lying. He’s engaged in spreading disinformation.

According to cable news fact checkers, zero per cent of new wall are being built. Zero. Previous administrations might emphasize favorable facts and cast them in the best possible light, but Trump repeats blatantly false statements, in hopes of wearing down the fact-checkers and creating a wholly new reality for his neo-fascist base. And after two years, that day may have arrived.

And vis a vis his wayward intelligence chiefs, Trump summoned them for a meeting, then reported that they had been misquoted (even though the proceedings were broadcast live.)

When you consider that Trump's grip on power is secured by the 35 percent approval rating he manages to maintain, via his 18 per cent of true-believer Republiconfederate neo-fascists, and a large number of low-information/Fox News-watching voters, you understand the importance of "winning" the daily news cycle. And if that takes making outrageous fact free statements, at least you have them talking about you. It works day in and day out because the media can't resist taking the bait. And never forget that when a thoroughly disgraced Richard Nixon prepared to board the helicopter, he maintained a 28 percent approval rating. And this was before the repeal of the Fairness Doctrine, which consequently enabled Fox News.

Google "Trump" and the phrase "without evidence". Just recently you'd have gotten Trump, without evidence, accuses James Comey of lying to HouseTrump, without evidence, says Arizona 'bracing' for surge of immigrantsPresident Trump Claims Without Evidence That Most Federal Employees Impacted by Shutdown Are DemocratsTrump claims without evidence that new migrant caravan is forming, and so on. Similar phrases will yield similar results: Trump rages at Twitter with baseless claim that it is tampering with his followers because of political bias. When you realize what the agenda is, each baseless lie and fresh outrage seems less an assault on truth and more a part of a consistent strategy to deny the notion of an objective reality made of verifiable facts.

Disinformation is the lure. Don't take the bait.


Surly1 is an administrator and contributing author to Doomstead Diner. He is the author of numerous rants, screeds and spittle-flecked invective here and elsewhere. He lives a quiet domestic existence in Southeastern Virginia with his wife Contrary. Descended from a long line of people to whom one could never tell anything, all opinions are his and his alone, because he paid full retail for everything he has managed to learn.

Doomstead Diner 7th Anniversary First Breakfast: Boiled Eggs for the Deplorables, Demented and Dimwits

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Published on The Doomstead Diner February 3, 2019

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Visit the new Cooking Zone of the Doomstead Diner

 

Amazingly for many reasons, the Doomstead Diner Blog & Forum has been perking along here for 7 years this February, and in celebration we are holding a 2 week long Pahhhty.  For this party, I am Chief Cook & Bottlewasher, my role on the Diner Forum.

There is of course much I could write on the progress of Collapse through 2018 as I have witnessed it from my perch on the Last Great Frontier of Alaska, the ever escalating geopolitical conflits, the ever shrinking economic pie, the various climate related disasters that escalate in size and cost every year, the social problems of increased drug use and overdoses, the mass shootings…there is no shortage of Collapse topics to deal with in any given week.

Of all of them though, I don't think here in the FSoA (Fascist States of Amerika for those of you not familiar with my acronym) there is any better example of Collapse than the election of Donaditry Trumpovetsky and the ongoing political Clown Show going on in Washington, from Goobermint Shutdowns to Border Walls to trade disputes with the Chinese to Taxation disputes to the Student Debt Time Bomb… the list goes on and on here.

At the center of all this mayhem here in the FSoA is the POTUS who got elected not by a majority of the population but by a majority of the "Electoral College", a system devised originally by the "Founding Fathers" to prevent the lower classes from running amok, and since refined with a lot of gerrymandering of districts designed to make sure the rich stay rich and the poor stay poor.  The Founding Fathers of course were the Aristocracy of the new "United States", they weren't the Indentured white servants, black slaves and certainly not the indigenous people, who were being exterminated as quick as possible.  Even to do that though, the rich have to co-opt at least some subset of the poor population to get elected, and the ones they use to do this are the poor white working class of Amerika, setting them against the other large population of poor people we have in this country, the Black, Brown, and Latino population.  The politics have morphed into politics of a racial divide rather than an economic divide setting one group against the other for their increasingly more meager slice of the great wealth pie that used to exist, but is now rapidly dwindling away with the supply of cheap fossil fuels.  In the words of Jay Gould:

Image result for jay gould quotes I can set one half of the working class

So, in my Cooking Video explaining how to properly Boil an Egg, I didn't do a send up of El Trumpo himself, but rather of the folks who voted him into office.  Hope you enjoy it, along with the many other foodie vids I am currently producing for the new Diner Cooking Zone show.  You will NOT enjoy it of course if you were one of the folks who actually DID vote for Trumpty-Dumpty. lol.  Perhaps though it may encourage you not to make the same stupid mistake twice.  One can only hope.

Brexit: No Reverse Gear for the EU

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Published on 22 Billion Energy Slaves on January 20,  2019

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Brexit: No Reverse Gear for the EU

 

 

 

 
The daily Brexit spectacle in this country grows ever more surreal. Since Theresa May had her EU leaving agreement ground into the tarmac like a discarded cigarette butt by MPs last week, and then narrowly avoided a vote of no-confidence launched by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, the complexity of the situation has exploded exponentially.
 
Politicians have had the best part of two years to find a solution to walking away from the European Union, which is what a majority of people voted to do, but now find themselves set back to square one. This time however there’s only 10 weeks left on the clock, which perhaps explains all the headless chickens running around.
 
Politics at the national level is usually mostly froth and can be safely ignored while more interesting pursuits are followed – after all, during the good times, aren’t politicians merely surfers catching the waves of popular opinion? Remember, these are the good times, for now.
 
But then there are times when serious underlying stresses in society and the economy have built up to a point where they threaten to cause devastating earthquakes. This is when politicians are put to the test – and usually found wanting. You expect them to solve serious national problems, but all they can do is spout platitudes and sound bites. It’s as if they are simply not designed to do the right job – like buying a dishwasher and expecting it to heat your dinner; what you get instead is a blocked outlet pipe and no dinner.
 
The political and social phenomena that arise at these times of stress have two aspects, that is they are both important and unimportant at the same time. I see them as being ‘unportent’.
 
Brexit, for example, is unimportant at face value. It is simply a country reconfiguring its trading arrangements into a more efficient format from the point of view of its people. True, there will likely be a period of adjustment when some prices of goods will be higher and some services could be unavailable, but demand and supply will iron out these problems in the medium term, like they always do. These are minor issues; Europe isn’t physically going anywhere, Britain isn’t going anywhere either, we’ll still be able to drink French wine and eat Italian cheese and go on holiday to the Alps … what’s the problem?
 
In fact, compared to the real crises of out time, such as the insect apocalypse, decaying infrastructure, mass mental breakdown etc. Brexit is hardly even worthy of consideration. Of course, the media have ways of amplifying the trivial and ignoring the important, so the whole situation may seem like a catastrophe if you get your information from those sources, but that doesn’t actually make it so.
 
At the same time, while it may not be important from a whole systems point of view, it can be important to the people within the system affected. For instance, given that the EU is both undemocratic when it comes to the important policy decisions, and a consolidator of centralised power, it matters a great deal to Brits whether or not their children will be conscripted into some future Euro army and forced to fight Russia for its resources at the behest of ‘chicken hawk’ politicians in Brussels, Paris and Washington.
 
Thus the whole Brexit saga is both unimportant and important at the same time i.e. unportent. I suspect unportent things will crop up with greater regularity as humanity continues to slide down the depletion curve of easy-to-get at energy sources.
 
Governing parties not fit for purpose?
It’s curious that Europe has seen the rise of a wave of new populist parties either swept into power, or finding themselves in prominent positions in coalitions over the last handful of years, and yet Britain still clings to the two-party tribal warfare system.
 
Italy has the 5 Star Movement, which is now forms a partner in government, and Germany has the AfD (Alternative for Germany) which has stolen support away from Angela Merkel, while Sweden has the Sweden Democrats, which were just yesterday denied a place in central government despite coming within a whisker of doing so. All of these so-called populist parties are derided in the mainstream media and described in varying tones of invective. 
 
It’s true that most of them are right-wing, driven primarily by concerns about unchecked immigration, but there’s no particular reason why they couldn’t be left-wing populists (apart from the fact that left-wing parties are currently preoccupied by issues of ‘social justice’ and are unable to coherently formulate policies that people might vote for). 
 
Britain, of course, has UKIP (the United Kingdom Independence Party) whose raison d'être was to force a vote on leaving the EU – something it can be said to have achieved. But due to the ‘winner takes it all’ system of democracy over here it was never destined to achieve great power. Instead it merely managed to exert enough political leverage to shift the Conservatives away from their cosy relationship with big business and extract the promise of a referendum. The fact that David Cameron thought British voters could be railroaded into voting to remain in the EU turned out to be a critical error on his part.
 
But, for the main part, British people are either Labour or Conservative voters, and these two parties have enjoyed a joint monopoly on power for over a hundred years, if you set aside the National Government of the inter-war years.
 
America is in a similar situation, with the Republicans and the Democrats the only two parties worthy of consideration for the majority of voters. While the two-party system gives an advantage in terms of stability, it is looking less suitable in the modern age with all its myriad power struggles and fragmented constituencies. Indeed, perhaps there's some kind of Anglo Saxon ‘two tribes’ mentality playing out here.
 
So what gives? Both parties in both countries are internally conflicted, with the neoliberal element in each having had the upper hand for the past four decades, which coincidentally I’m sure, is the same time period over which the financialisation and globalisation of the world economy took place.
 
During this period, money has dominated politics, because parties could woo big business with the promise of rewards in the form of contracts, reduced regulation and a lower tax burden … just as soon as they got into power. They could easily do this because, once in power, governments in industrialised countries have had the privilege of being able to create money out of thin air without somehow having to earn it.
 
This worked well, up to a point. After conventional oil production peaked in 2005 and the real economy stopped growing, it became an awful lot harder to service all the debt that had been built up, leading to the financial heart attack of 2008. Since then, the global economy has been kept alive as ‘first responder’ central bankers performed CPR and mainlined dizzying amounts of ‘money’, i.e. debt, into the languid white arm of the economy in the hope that the corpse would get up off the floor and start walking again. So far, apart from a few twitches and convulsions, it’s still lying there.
 
With dismal growth, the spoils of financialisation and globalism have become a lot scarcer. Those with access to what remains are fleeing to their citadels and pulling up the drawbridge behind them, while the vast majority of us are left as ‘tax donkeys’, working two or three jobs and dealing with hidden inflation, punitive regulations and reduced prospects. Life just ain’t the same as it used to be.
 
Instead of an easy life we get Donald Trump, Brexit and the Gilets Jaunes – all manifestations of ‘the people’ of industrialised countries trying to claw back some of the wealth and resources they feel are theirs. Can't we just back up a little and go back to simpler systems that redistribute the wealth a bit more evenly?
 
It turns out, however, that there is no reverse gear in over-developed financialised economies. They are built on the concept of exponentially expanding economic growth – something that is neither possible nor, arguably, desirable. To stop growing is to die and consolidation of financial power is a one-way kind of thing. 
 
Perhaps this is why the political classes are doing everything in their power to overturn Brexit and to impeach Trump and fob off the Gilets Jaunes with delays to tax hikes. They may well be successful in all of their attempts but it doesn’t change the dynamic forces behind the scenes that led to the popular rebellions in the first place. As one Gilet Jaune protester succinctly put it "We don't want Macron's crumbs, we want the whole baguette."
 
But are ‘the people’ right?
Most people in these damp islands have a vague and confused idea about the EU. Like Marmite, you are supposed to either love it or hate it. Those in favour of it generally have a ‘rainbows and unicorns’ vision of a benign distant force for good that occasionally arrives on our shores to disgorge its cornucopia of cash, and give our crooked politicians a well-deserved kick up the backside. Others have the polar opposite view, imagining Brussels to be a nest of villainous meddlers who spend day and night concocting schemes to straighten bananas, ban toasters and forbid the use of feet and inches.
 
The truth, of course, lies somewhere in the middle. Yes, the EU has had some success in forcing Britain to clean up its beaches and make it easier to study abroad, and the last time I checked there were still bent bananas in my local grocery store being sold by the pound.
 
Fans of the EU also like to point to various initiatives and projects that are funded by the bloc, claiming that these would never have been undertaken without EU funding. While this may be true, many of these projects could be considered ‘white elephants’. Not long after the EU has built them, cut the ribbon, erected their large blue “This project was funded by the EU” signs and buggered off, it’s usually the local community that is forced to pay for their upkeep and eventual decommisioning with their local taxes.
 
One such example is an industrial heritage mining site near where I live in Cornwall that was part-funded by the EU and given World Heritage status when it opened in 2012. Not only have I never visited it, I’ve never even heard of anyone visiting it, and looking at its website today the ‘Latest Happenings’ section hasn’t been updated in nine months.  Its Wikipedia page is four sentences long (by comparison, Cambodia’s Angkor Wat entry has 8,000 words) – to be honest, it’s not even very good at being a white elephant.
 
However, mention the EU to some of the locals around here and they won’t talk about prestige projects like the Heartlands Heritage Mining Centre, they’ll talk about how Brussels devastated the local fishing industry and destroyed their children’s future. They will tell you how an army of trucks awaits at the docks at dawn each morning to load up the contents of the fishing boats and immediately ship it off to continental Europe, while their own families are forced to shop at Poundland and eat frozen fish fingers. It’s narratives like this that may have had a hand in Cornwall’s decision to vote ‘No’ in the referendum, although they were roundly mocked for doing so, called ‘stupid’ and other less than pleasant names.
 
The kind of disconnect between two entirely different versions of reality throws a sharp light on the struggle between the winners and losers in the globalised economy.
 
As I finish off writing this, it’s Sunday morning and the newspapers are saying that a group of MPs is planning either to sabotage the Brexit process and keep the UK in the EU, or to push through some kind of dismal deal that will effectively sell off the country for a fistful of euros. It would be a mistake to do so. The forces that have been unleashed are not about to meekly get back into Pandora’s box and agree to shut up.
 
EU elections are coming up in May that will likely see a populist right-wing ‘anti EU’ bloc forming at the very centre of political-power, and with Eurozone industrial production and growth plummeting it won’t be long before Europe enters a steep recession – and by then it won’t be just France that goes up in flames. To try and prevent this, ECB president Mario Draghi is doing the only thing he knows how to do – cranking up the money printing press – just in time to feed the thousands of moribund ‘zombie’ corporations dotted across Europe that can only survive if free money is hosed their way. 
 
The banking industry isn’t looking too stable either, with German banks – led by Deutsch – losing most of their value, Italian ones already starting to implode and Denmark’s biggest bank implicated in one of the biggest money laundering scandals in banking history …
 
 
Meanwhile, EU figureheads Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron are both spent political forces, the latter unable to show his boyish face in public, preferring instead to address the hordes of angry left-behinds from his golden Élysée Palace. Italy’s deputy PM, Matteo Salvini, is openly trolling permadrunk EC President Jean Claude Juncker, and Hungarian pariah PM Viktor Orban is the kind of political ghoul who must give the Euro power elite nightmares.
 
Will the UK be able to break away from this sinking ship in time before the acrid smell of smoke from burning capitals wafts across the English Channel to London, polluting the rarefied air of the political bubble in Westminster? Perhaps the smell will simultaneously put the virtue-signalling Islington Guardianistas off their flat whites and the money-grubbing City speculators off their glasses of Chablis?

 

 
Who knows, stranger things have happened.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Adapters Movement 1 – In Four Parts

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Published on the Doomstead Diner on January 30, 2019

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C5 Defines The Adapters Movement- In Four Parts. Part I- Introduction

“Survival does not go to the fittest, the strongest or the biggest. Evolutionary Paleontology shows this over and over. The same can be said for the human history of empires. Like the Brontosaurus or T-Rex, this may run for a while but then it hits an evolutionary dead end when rapid change to the ecosystem comes.

Instead, evolution and survival goes to the most adaptive.”    C5

With your host, Category5

(This was originally written as one article. Peer reviewers have asked me to break it down into 4 parts. The 5th part will be the complete article presented as one)

 

I needed to start this post with a soundtrack. One of those cheesy, sappy 70s songs, that taken out of context makes a great backdrop for a horror film… or in this case, a post apocalyptic story.

For those that have been reading my works, here at the The Dark Green Mountain Survival Research Centre, since the beginning, I have alluded to something called The Adapters Movement or being an Adapter, that what we do is Adaptation. I tell people, I am not a Prepper anymore. I am already Prepped. What I am now is an Adapter. I am ADAPTING my life NOW to the Apocalypse That Has Already Arrived.

I have said, this theoretical Adapters Movement Does Not Exist. But that it needs to happen. It coming into existence would fill a hole in our culture and solves a problem.

But in saying the Adapters Movement does not exist….. well, that might not be true anymore.

A few people have heard the term. More so, a few people have started using the term. It’s now out there.

Farmgal gave me a phone call from a few Canadian Provinces over. She said, “The reason I called is because I was talking with a colleague and we discussed the Adapters Movement. Next thing I knew, she wanted to hire me to come in and teach a course on the adapters movement. Dont worry. I am going to give you credit as the person that came up with it. The problem I am facing is that Im not sure what to talk about”.

I told Farmgal we would work it out together. More so, I would reach out to some others. Wisdom comes in the council of many.

One person responded, “Which brings me to this idea of a new label. That is in essence what prepper was. It was folks tired of the survivalist label who wanted a label with less baggage. Now prepper has a new set of baggage, mostly due to the horrible “reality” TV show. But how long before this new label Adapter becomes corrupted by elements that don’t represent the intention but take over due to being the loudest voices?”

What I am NOT doing here is sticking a flashy new label on an old radioactive product. What I am doing here is starting over from scratch and putting in clear checks and  balances and boundaries so that it cannot be co-opted. Clear, defining Principals will be its base so that old Preppers, Survivalists, conspiracy peddlers, Racist or Christian Reconstructionist militants ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Christian_reconstructionism ) cant just start saying “I guess we are called Adapters now”. This is exactly what we saw happen to the Preppers movement somewhere around 2008.

This will be less of the entertaining style folks have gotten used to here. It will be long. A short thesis. Being that a new “Movement” can not be all about me or what I am doing to adapt, I am bringing in 3 independent and experienced voices to act as a sort of Peer Review. You can think of them as a Board Of Directors or Council of Elders. To put checks and balances on myself  I will be giving them 100% authority to EDIT, critique or even ADD input. Once again, Wisdom comes in the council of many.

First Council position, since she brought it up, will be Farmgal. Long time Moderator at the Canadian Preppers Network. Seed breeding Specialist. Permaculturalist. Food Specialist. Animal breeder. And all round “Smartgal”.

Second Council goes to Nicole Alderman. Moderator, Master Steward  at Permies.com. Permaculturalist. Homesteader. Prepper. One of the reasons I have brought her in is because I have observed that she is very good at self criticizing her experiences and her reasonable long term thinking. I’ll have her soon for a full interview.

Third Council goes to Doc Michael from Apocadocs. Part of the reason for this is his Transition Town experience. A second reason is because he had to abandon his homestead and  Community Supported Agriculture business a few years ago. This had to do with age, injury, health and financial issues. I bring this up because he has deeper experience in things that can go wrong with good ideas and the things rarely talked about on this subject. Even more important Michael has known me personally for several years… so he knows my personal quirks and the man behind the blog. More so, he can hold me to account. Openness and Accountability is one of the “Principles” I will be presenting later.

All three of these folks, I consider actual Peers. A lot of the more well known preppers out there, I do not.

Now, I had high hopes for the preppers movement. Back in the day, it was more of a skills sharing movement. It was more about people digging up hard to find information and spreading that knowledge around. It had become very Inclusive. Anyone could become a prepper. Strangely, this would become its downfall. It was the Wild West.

It would be tempting to start this discussion about becoming an Adapter by just calling it Advanced Prepping. I realized that would be a huge mistake. That would just let the advanced rot fester under the surface. Better to cut the root and plant something new. I had seen some online prepping forums, facing the chaos, institute strict, “No politics. No religious proselytism. No conspiracy theories”, but unfortunately it was already too late. People took this as limiting free speech and went off to the darker web, congregating in echo chambers where extremism festers and the angry try to out compete others there for status and social advancement.

The recent swath of Extreme Right, hate and racial mass murders and assassination attempts is no surprise to me, whatsoever. They simply did what they said they were going to do.

But before we can talk about Adapting, starting something new with checks and balances and defining principles, first we have to talk about the the history of the preppers movement. The simplest definition of a Prepper is “Someone who prepares” for some future event. There is a lot to say in a defining title. It could be, “some one who prepares for war” as much as “someone who prepares for the next ice storm” or “someone who prepares in case they get lost in the woods. But at its core, prepping is a word focused on some future event.

Let’s look at the word “Survivalism”. “Someone who intends to survive” an event. One of the creepiest things I hear from Survivalists, and a clear warning sign, a point at which I wont let them get to know me or any of my friends, is those 5 toxic words, “I’ll do anything to survive”. The more self deceiving version of this is, “I’ll do anything so that my family survives”. That way a selfish and dangerous, predator douchebag, or “The Purge” type of person can spin theft and murder into some kind of  martyr  morality high ground… instead of being an antisocial criminal. This is the type of person that will say “It’s Survival of the fittest” and focus on WROL or Without Rule Or Law. These folks mainly have a lot of guns and combat gear, or at least they have given themselves moral permission to embrace their baser instincts. It will probably take a sucking chest wound or seeing a family member with the side of their head missing or the inside of a jail cell before a person like this sees the error of their ways.

On the flip side of this is the person that won’t make even the most rational and modest preparation or Adaptation to a changing world by saying, “If it is going to be like The Road Warrior, I don’t want to SURVIVE”.

Others have seen the problem associated with THAT word. There was a sub genre that said they were Survivor Thrivers.  Call me a pretentious Gen-Xer but that term was just far too dorky sounding to ever be a rallying call. Nor was it chopping out the underlying rot.

Here is another reason why words matter. Have you noticed a lot of Survivalism is about Bushcraft. The Boy Scout factor. Building traps. Staring fires. Building lean-tos or debris huts. Primitive hunting and fishing. This can follow the path of either pioneer inspired, black powder and trappers or First Nations, “primitive Survival”. The Fake Indian factor. This is all somehow important to the “Bug Out” phenomena. The term “Bug Out” is the dead give away. A military term. Pre-prepping days, if someone was interested in “Survival”, generally the only books they would find with that title would be about, “Wilderness Survival”. In many cases, that would include Ex Military guys teaching, “Survival, Escape, Evasion and Resistance”. There is that word again. “Survival”. Survivalism  evolves from Boy-scout to Militarism. From squirrel traps to human traps, bomb making, improvised guns, lock picking and break and entering. Camouflage and hiding. Tracking, stealth and assassination.

All of this then becomes very interesting for those who’s main focus is “Race Survival” or eliminating Other races. Or Christian Reconstuctionists with plans to make their countries a Theocracy/ Theonomy (if not by the ballot box, then by the cartridge box)  and others with fear based conspiracies.

The Military man then becomes the most important person to learn from. This fills up the survivalist world with alot of ex military guys that are offered a position of importance and the opportunity to only be around other military guys that have been through what they have been through. Now days, most people teaching about survivalism or prepping won’t get any real respect unless they give their rank and “service” history, or will be attacked and belittled for not having it.

Now, I cant be the first or only person to point out what should be obvious. Can I? That they have nothing to teach about Actual Survival. NOTHING. At least nothing practical. Well, maybe if they learned electrical engineering or if they were a mechanic in the motor pool. Maybe. But the level of baggage, and cult like brainwashing and trauma doesn’t appeal to me in the slightest, when considering group association. In fact, they are often a clear and present danger.

Some of you long timers out there will chuckle when I bring up the Survivalist Show and Tell moment. You know what I am talking about. That moment when some survivalist guys get together and decide to show off something cool they have. Now, consider me there in that bunch. I pull out a U-Bar for breaking sod and soil and hand it to the military guy, explaining why this is in the top ten “Preps”. The military guy is handling this big awkward garden tool and his brain is shorting, sparks behind the eyeballs. Then I go Full Shock and Awe. “Come check out this awesome SHTF, apocalyptic extension ladder so I can clean the creosote out of my woodstove chimney. It’s #6 on the list of the most important survival items to own”, at which point the military guys head explodes and the headless corpse attacks me. I don’t fit into his world view and am thus, an existential threat to his self identity and place in the world.

I recently checked into Wikipedia for their history of Survivalism. I was there to pass on some info about the early influences of Reconstructionists, Racist groups and the Militia Movement in Survivalism. All that info has now been edited out of Wikipedia. I was shocked. Someone came in and completely “White Washed” it. What I was less shocked about was that Wikipedia had lumped Survivalists and Preppers under the same title saying they were the same thing. I had already seen them edit out the history of preppers. In many ways, it is true. Now days, preppers and survivalists are pretty much the same thing. Not so in the past. Preppers were a reaction to the excesses of the survivalist movement, in the same way as Protestants (protesters) were a reaction to the excesses of Catholicism. (FYI. I’m not picking on Catholics here)

As I have mentioned before, first use of the term “Prepping” in reference to the subject matter came from the Foxfire book series. I suppose I am foolish to think modern preppers or survivalists are already familiar with these books so here are some links.

https://www.foxfire.org/shop/category/books/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foxfire_%28magazine%29

For those of us that grew up with the Foxfire book series, You will already know it was a documentation of historical Appalachian homesteading practices.

Foxfire Vol. 1  (14 mb)
Foxfire Vol. 2  (18 mb)
Foxfire Vol. 3  (17 mb)
Foxfire Vol. 4  (14 mb)
Foxfire Vol. 5  42 mb)

The earlier prepper movement was much more of a homeschooling movement. Arguments were less about politics or gun culture and more about childhood education methods. Though mainly a christian movement, it was not exclusive. I guess folks that grew up with the sunday school hymnal of “Jesus loves the little children. All the Children of the world. Red and yellow, black and white, all are precious in his sight”, were less inclined to hate and exclusion. (I wish I could still say the same today but no)

With this inclusiveness, now-days it’s not unusual to find Black preppers or even Gay preppers, and more and more you find preppers moving towards Permaculture. The permaculture movement, turns out, is now filled with preppers, prepper light or prepper friendly folks, even if they disagree with the prepper movement.

Now, part of the reason I have taken you through this short history lesson is that as I intend to define The Adapters Movement, or to START The Adapters Movement, my deliberate intentions are to make it Exclusive. Not to exclude any group… but to intentionally make it difficult to use that name.

A guy in an apartment with a gun and a few boxes of MREs, obsessing about conspiracy theories on the internet wont be able to say he is an Adapter. A Field and Stream, hunting and fishing person with a seasonal cabin and a quad, wont be able to say they are an Adapter…, unless they have much more backing up the claim. A suburban housewife, planing for an ice storm or earthquake with a week of food, flashlight and a generator, definitely not an Adapter. A city guy into camping trips, justifying it as “Bug Out Training”… where to even begin with that one not being an Adapter. I put out a whole 5 part series on that. https://darkgreenmountainsurvivalresearchcentre.wordpress.com/2017/06/23/c5-presents-the-fallacy-of-bugging-out-part-i-by-survival-acres/

Most importantly, a Survivalist in a large truck, clutching the Bible, the Constitution, a copy on Ayn Rand and The Turner Diaries,( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Turner_Diaries )  unable to tell the difference, won’t be able to say, “I guess we are called Adapters Now. What ever. And by the way, we are better than Adapters… and we are claiming the name as our own” as happened with the preppers movement. You will be able to look them strait in the eye and say “The 80s called. They want their Booney hats, Fu Manchu mustaches, 1911’s and Soldier Of Fortune magazines back. You say you are an Adapter? Prove it Buzz Light Beer. If you are not practicing the Adaptation Principles, written down by the Adapters Movement founders, go play plastic survivalist man somewhere else.

The question then follows…. What is the Adapters Movement

Instead of breaching the subject to traditional preppers or survivalist, that I thought may be too trapped in their own ways of thinking to consider a complete tear-down and rebuild from the ground up, I decided to reach outside of the box a bit. I presented this job to folks over in the permaculture world for public debate as I knew they would be (to some degree) more outside of the box thinkers. My guess was that there would be less “self identification” to feel threatened or feel attacked buy a complete tear down of a system. Less “I Am a”…prepper or “I Am a”…survivalist or “I Am a”…Christian, where self identity and direction can be mixed up. Less PREVIOUS INVESTMENT and The Self to defend.

There was some real push back… and a few harsh words… but on the whole, my query was overwhelmingly greeted with enthusiasm, thoughtful participation and  several people went out of there way to thank me for bringing this up and taking on this labour.

I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised. Like going into a book store and finding out the post apocalyptic fiction section has been moved to current events.

Though it may seem like a nothing issue and easy to dismiss, one person wrote about their discomfort in the regular use of Apocalypse. You will notice that I use that term to describe our predicament more than other terms though it comes with inherent religious overtones. Sometimes Collapse does not do. Collapse from what to what? Banks closing or limiting withdrawals? Is that a collapse? Not really. That happens periodically in history. Life goes on. Generally, when I use SHTF or WROL or TEOTWAWKI, I am using the term sarcastically. Even mockingly. I use Apocalypse often because its a better discriptor and what we are facing is truly Apocalyptic. The commenter rightly  pointed out that most people read Apocalypse as the end of the world. The term means Revelation. The truth is Revealed.

Now, I am fully aware of this, being the wordy fellow that I am. It’s a subtle joke in my writing. Apocalypse is the moment the veil has been pulled back and the truth is exposed. It’s the moment people see that they have followed a lie, their suburban middle class lifestyle was a false god, weeping and nashing of teeth to follow. But it is not the end. When people use the term TEOTWAWKI or The End Of The World As We Know It, They generally only see The End Of The World part. I jump up and down waving my arms to point out the As We Know It part. This may seem a strange place to start my description and principles of The Adapters Movement, but it is good to point out, folks from other countries often point out and criticize that what North Americans call prepping is simply just called LIFE in most of the world.

And now the veil is pulled back and the truth is revealed of why I chose that incongruent piece of music to start this article, with the lyrics…

-“We’ve only just begun… to live…. So many roads to chose. We start out walking and learn to run… Sharing horizons that are new to us. Watching the signs along the way. Talking it over, just the two of us. Working together, day to day, together. And when the evening comes, we smile. So much of life ahead. We’ll find a place where there’s room to grow. And yes, We’ve just begun.”

The Adapters Movement- Pinciples and Directions

At its core, Adaptation is about living. It’s about Life, today and tomorrow. I wrote at the beginning of all this, “I tell people, I am not a Prepper anymore. I am already Prepped. (I am not living in the future) What I am now is an Adapter. I am ADAPTING my life NOW to the Apocalypse That Has Already Arrived.”

This may seem like a Don Quixote like jousting of windmills, so it was good to hear from others. One replied,

“your quest resonates with me.  Your observation that the apocalypse has already arrived and that we are living in it resonates with me.  Of course, as with anything else in this oddly-globalized world, it’s far from evenly distributed… Nor will it ever be evenly distributed…  But every time I turn on the news the horsemen are getting closer to my house.”     (I should ad that Malibu California is burning today.C5)

Another wrote, “It is more and more an apocalyptic place we live in. I agree. Maybe almost post-apoc. Communication is key… With communication comes information to save lives. Most people take it all for granted that we can talk to anyone anywhere, but what do they speak of?”

Still another wrote, “Wow, so many good thoughts on here! Thank you for starting this! My health crashed HARD in1996, I lost my health, my career, my friends, my money, everything. I am living the back side of SHTF…Anyone who has read my dumpster diving threads will know how I coped with a lot of that. I learned to adapt. I’m GOOD at adapt. I had to be. I KNOW I will have to adapt again at some point…What I’m doing with my life right now is putting into place what I wish I had the first time the world crashed around me, using the currently available resources to set up a life that doesn’t rely on needing that. I beat the rush! But hey, I have experience points now! I know more of what doesn’t work. “

To keep this all from becoming just a C5 love fest, I thought I would add a detractor. She wrote, “ your presentation reads like a Youtube motivational or real estate commercial.  Your aggressive dismissal of everyone else out there who is not using your vocabulary is a turnoff.    I got tired about half way through so I’m out. …and if spirit doesn’t give me enough to survive then, so be it.”

Well, I cant please everyone and I don’t make any attempt to. And clearly one of my defining principles is that I can’t save everyone. See Triage. Another Detractor wrote,..

“It appears this new “Adapters” movement can be simply defined by three traits: 1) We are not like survivalists or preppers . 2) We have a name for our movement but no original or feasible ideas/concepts to base a movement on. 3) Our defining group characteristic is our mutual desire to mock and ridicule survivalists/preppers”.

See my comments on people that would have there personal identity wrapped up with their self identifying titles, previous investment and actions. Now, lets move on to some of those “original or feasible ideas/concepts to base a movement on.”

So, the first Major Defining Principal is…

ACCEPTANCE

 

To be continued, next episode


Bonus reads that I will edit out later. I started writing this, mid October. Since then, many others were catching up with my thinking, often using the exact same words.

https://www.peakprosperity.com/blog/114741/collapse-already-here?utm_campaign=weekly_newsletter_373&utm_source=newsletter_2019-01-26&utm_medium=email_newsletter&utm_content=node_link_114741

 

http://www.doomsteaddiner.net/blog/2019/01/22/collapse-its-already-here/

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2019 Collapse Survey: The 500 – Politics & Economics

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Published on The Doomstead Diner January 27, 2019

Discuss this article at the Survey Table inside the Diner

 

Notes from RE:

1- This installment of the survey uses the latest set of charts & graphs with 541 Respondents.  This is the set that respondents who left their email addys will receive in pdf document form around the end of January.  If you are interested in doing statistical aanlysis on this data and cross-correlating some of the questions, like breaking down the responses by age or income level or education level, contact me here on the Diner via the Contact Page.

2- Of the 3 parts to this series, this is the one which led some folks to consider it too Americentric, because of the questions on the Amerikan Political Clown Show.  However, even here this only makes up a few of the questions and most of them are generally applicable anywhere in the world.

No parts of this study may be used on commercial websites that use Advertising or sell Merchandise such as the Author's books, or which have Paywalls without the expressed consent of the Doomstead Diner and the Sustaining Universal Needs Foundation.  None of the charts and graphs may be altered in any way or the copyright and logos removed from those charts.

The Survey remains OPEN at this time.  Responses keep dribbling in and I don't want to leave anyone out of the final Tally.

Now, on to the charts from the survey.  For today, we look at the Political & Economic Questions.  I'll make a few brief comments beneath each chart.   For further analysis and discussion, visit the Survey Table inside the Diner.

 

Survey still OPEN

Survey now @ 636 Submissions

As you can readily see, if the whole country was composed of Kollapsniks, Trumpovetsky never would have been elected, and we wouldn't be in the pickle we are in now.   Some other kind of pickle likely, but not such a BIG PICKLE🥒 so fast!  Since they are better educated than average, most Kollapsniks easily saw through the lies that El Trumpo was pitching out on the campaign trail, so blatant and obvious it's hard to imagine how almost 50% of the population of the FSoA voted for him (he didn't win the popular vote).  However, if you ever sat in a cab and listened to Rush Limbaugh rant over the airwaves, you might have some clue as to how this occured.

Also obvious, the people who didn't vote for him in 2016 aren't going to vote for him in 2020, assuming the Repugnants are stupid enough to nominate him again, which they probably are.  The question here on this go-round is how many of those 14% "It Depends who runas against him" folks will find someone else to vote for this time around?  That of course depends on who the Demodopes finally nominate, which remains a big question mark.  Also who a 3rd Party Libertarian candidate might be.  If the Libertarians got Ron Paul to run on their ticket, this would totally suck the wind out of Donalditry's sails.  That however is an unlikely scenario at the moment.

Amongst Kollapsniks, Joe Biden seems the most likely to get the nomination as of now.  He has the Veep & Senate credentials and long years of political hacking under his belt.  However, he's also pretty old and likely doesn't hold much appeal for the new wave of younger voters becoming politically energized by their ever downward spiralling economic opportunities and upward spiralling college costs and student loans.  Coming in at #2 on the Hit Parade here is Beto O'Rourke, fresh of a narrow loss to Ted Cruz in the heavily Repugnant state of Texas.  Beto demonstrated amazing fundraising ability for that campaign, shattering all records.  He's got charisma and youthful vitality, and has been favorably compared to the heros of the Demodope Party even after 50 years, John & Robert Kennedy.  However, he is thin on Goobermint experience with only a couple of terms as a CONgress Critter from El Paso under his belt.  Liz Warren shows in 3rd Place in this survey, and will definitely capture the Wimmen's Vote in this horse race if she gets the nomination.  However, many people view her as "too liberal" to draw any support away from Trumpovetsky.  In 4th and out of the money so far is Bernie Sanders, who really should have had the nomination in 2016 if it hadn't been stolen by Killary Klinton.  He's got a big following still and also is a proven fundraiser.  Like Joe Biden though, he is getting long in the tooth, although he still seems to have a lot of energy for political fighting.

Joe Biden comes in again 1st for the one who would make the best POTUS if elected, with Liz Warren in 2nd this time and Bernie Sanders 3rd.  All 3 have Senatorial experience, which probably is why they get the nod     in this question.  Beto-O'Rourke comes in tied for 3rd with Bernie in a very tight race there.  One does have to remember in all of this though that so far Liz Warren is the only one who is a definite candidate, and also that a Dark Horse might emerge in the long run to the White House.

I put up this chart in the prior article on Demographics, but I thought it a good idea to repeat it here for reference purposes against the other political questions.  The same things remain true, Kollapsniks are migrating away from the traditional Repugnant & Demodope Parties and now identify themselves with other political self-definitions, generall more polarized and further to the Left or Right.  There are also an ever growing number of Fascists, Communists and Anarchist in the mix as the population becomes increasingly radicalized.

On this topic, the Economic issues come out in top place, and I agree with that.  Economic Collapse is the proximal problem faced everywhere these days and is what is driving all the political instability and increasing bellicosity pushing toward War to solve the problems, which it won't of course.  The Migration "crises" in the FSoA is a manufactured crisis by Trumpty-Dumpty to satisfy his legion of Deplorables who he promised a REALLY BIG WALL to, which he ain't gonna get.  They'll be lucky to appropriate enough money to maintain their current fencing around the major foot traffic migration border towns in Texas, New Mexico, Arizona and California.  El Trumpo needs this distraction though, so he keeps pumping it.

Out of the money in 4th Place is the ongoing Climate Crisis, which you wouldn't know if all you read is r/collapse where for those Doomers it's the #1 Problem because we're all gonna DIE when the Oceans drown all the coastal cities and all the farmland dries up to.  Both are problems of course, but neither one likely to happen next year, so it doesn't present a political crisis at the moment.

This statistic changed a lot over the first 300 or so submissons, edending on which website was dropping on the most submissions.  It got as high as 70% feeling the Repugnants would retain control over the Senate while The Burning Platform was making most of its submissions, but whittled down to around 50%, where it has been hovering since around the 450 mark in responses.  In fact at this point none of the percentages change very much no matter how many more people respond, which is why it's a significant statistical sample.

This battle is almost more interesting than the POTUS battle and very difficult to make a prediction on.  Lots of gerrymanderingdone by the Repugnants over the years making it very difficult for Demodopes to win in many states.  Also interesting is the scenario where Trumpofsky got reelected but both House of CONgress were in Demodope hands.  I would expect an impeachment to follow that shortly.

I also went over this one in the Demographic overview, but since it's a Political question I felt it belongs here also for reference.  Unsurprisingly, Kollapsniks who frequent the web get most of their information from there, either the Alternative Newz sites & Blogs or the MSM which is now mainly online rather than in Newzpaper format.  Does anyone have a subscription to a Daily Newzpaper anymore?  There's another job lost to the internet, Paperboys!

This also explains the vast gulf in attitudes between Kollapsniks and the hoi polloi.  If you surveyed there, I am sure TV and Talk Radio would be in the top spots.  Like computers, people follow the rule of "Garbage in, Garbage out" also.  Not that all internet newz sources are all that great either, and readers to tend to gravitate toward sites that provide them with Confirmation Bias, extending on both sides of the Political Spectrum to quite extreme views.  Although it seems to me anecdotally that there are more  Extreme Right Wing websites than Left Wing ones.  I don't have any numbers to back up that impression though.

9 – Write-In Candidates for POTUS

 

Bernie Sanders greg hunter Lewis black Shaquille O'Neal
Ajamu Baraka Henry Rollins Mark Warner Stacy Abrams
Al Gore Jake Tapper Martin armstrong Stephanie Kelton
Alexandria Ocasio Cortez James Hansen Michael Mann Stephen Colbert
Amy Kobucher James Mattis Michael Parenti Stephen King
Andrew Bacevich Jeff Flake Michelle Obama Steve Ludlum
Andrew Yang Jeff Merkeley Mike Enoch Steven Pinker
Angelina Jolie Jerry Brown Mitt Romney David Stockman
Angelo D'Angelo Jesse Ventura Robert Mueller Ted Cruz
Ann Coulter Jill Stein neil degrass tyson Ted Lieu
Arnold Schwarzenegger Jim Carrey Nikki Haley Tulsi Gabbard
Chris Hedges Jim Jordan noam chomsky Tom Cotton
Chuck Schumer Jim Quinn Mike Pence Tom Fitton
Colin Powell John Darnielle Penn Jillette Tom Hanks
Cornel West John Michael Greer Vladimir Putin Tom Kratman
David Duke Jon Huntsman, Jr. Ralph Nader Tom Steyer
Derrick Jensen Jordan Peterson Rand Paul Tucker Carlson
Dr. James Hansen judge napolitano Richard Heinberg Warren Buffett
Dwayne johnson Katherine Hayhoe Ron Paul Yves Smith
Elon Musk Kayne West Rosa Luxenberg  
Gail Tverberg Kim Kardashian Russell Brand  
Garrett Hardin Kristen Gillibrand Paul Ryan  
Gerald Celente Larry Hogan Sam Carana  
glenn beck Lawrence Kotlicoff Scott Walker  

 

As you can see, there's quite a selection of write in candidates here.  Eliminated from the list are Dead People, Cartoon Characters, Selfies, Nobodies & I Don't Knows.  Also nominations for people who are already on the list of choices, and Trumpovtsky who is likely to be on the Reugnant ticket.  This question was for the Demodopes ticket.  Also some non-US citizens like Russel Brand were written in, but they couldn't be elected even if there were enough write-ins for them.  I left them in the list anyhow though.

A Dead Heat (pun intended) here in this race, and it kind of depends on how you look at the question.  In the long run it doesn't matter since Industrial Civilization will Collapse regardless who is in office.  It does matter though in the more near term,because one Party is going to make sure the Rich get Richer and the Poor get Poorer as Collapse progresses, and the other party might distribute out the rapidly shrinking pie of planetary wealth a little more evenly.  I'm sure you can figure out which party is which here on that score.

In any event, the political setup here has a limited lifespan, once the monetary system collapses it is destined for the scrap heap, and what will come after it is a Known Unkown.

Similar to the question of whether it makes a difference if you vote in a Demodope or a Repugnant to office, this depends on how you interpret the question.  Voting isn't going to stop Collapse, but then neither will Revolution.  However, in either of those cases if you can make some change to the status quo, the downhill slope could take different routes.  One might go on the Downhill, straight down the hill full blass with no Gates, the other might take a Slalom back and forth and slow down the descent some.  Another Known Unknown is what is the best choice to take here.

Most Kollapsniks don't see too much difference between Demodopes and Repugnants, but 2/3rds of them would participate in Street Demonstrations for Political Change of some kind.  Street Demonstrations amount to "Revolution Lite", people will come out in favor of this without necessarily advocating for Revolution.  However, since the effectiveness of Street Demonstrations these days is questionable, it's really just a precursor to Revolution as the demonstrators don't get the changes they are looking for from this type of political action.  In the words of JFK:

Image result for jfk those who make peaceful

Unsurprisingly, the vast majority of Kollapsniks would prefer Revolution to a continuance of BAU.  However, I'm not sure how many of them think through what the consequences will be and the amount of Death that will come with it, quite rapidly.  I also suspect this distribution varies a LOT by the Socioeconomic position of the respondent, whether they are low income and struggling to survive or high income and still living the fairly cushy lifestyle that goes with that.  It probably also is dependent on the position and level of education of the respondent, I suspect the Drs have a different distribution than the HS Grads.  However, I haven't yet parsed the data to verify that.

This is a gratifying result, considering the Hopelessness pitch that Dr. McStinksion dishes out from Nature Bats Last.  If it's all hopeless, why bother with any Political Action?  Just Party like it's 1999 until you are one of the Dead People!  Don't bother to Prep Up, that's a Waste of Time too!  In fact, don't bother to get out of bed, that's another waste of time.

Extinction isn't a guarantee, nobody has a Crystal Ball on this.  A population Knockdown is likely, but even that isn't guaranteed, and you can't peg an absolute timeline to that either.  Meanwhile, you ned to figure out what to do with yourself and how to stay alive just as long as you can.  That is of course as long as you prefer the alternative of living to dying.

This again is a result I agree with, Economic Collapse is going to preceed a complete Climate Collapse by quite some time, and wreak much more havoc in the near term when it hits in full force.  Think of it like a Global Tsunami, it will wash over every aspect of life and the resultant Death Toll will be in the Millions if not Billions.  We're going to need to get these problems resolved before it even becomes possible to address the Climate Collapse issues.  Whether that can be done on any kind of large scale is an open question, though IMHO one with a likely negative answer.

You can however make changes to your own life that can help you survive as the climate collapse progresses.  You location is a primary one, if you live right on the coast in Hurricane Alley, this is not a good choice of places to live.  Building in resilience is also a good choice here, living rurally off-grid and growing at least some of your own food better than sticking to BAU in the Big Shities to make a big paycheck.  Most important of all is to develop COMMUNITY, going it alone is a sure ticket to the Great Beyond when TSHTF.

 

Next week, I'll present the many write-in answers from survey respondents on the problems they see as important.  Untiil then, have another good wee as we observe the Collapse of Industrial Civilization here on the Doomstead Diner.

Collapse? It’s already here.


That-Was-The-Week-That-W-That-Was-The-Week-473964gc2smFrom the keyboard of Surly1
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Anthony Freda

Originally published on the Doomstead Diner on January 22, 2019

The future is here. It’s just unevenly distributed.”

–William Gibson


UPDATE January 27: On Friday Jan. 25 Trump had signed a three-week stopgap bill to reopen those parts of the government shuttered through February 15. Democrats are happily spiking the ball in the end zone, but as the reliable and prescient Dahlia Lithwick writes in Slate, the utterances of Trump, Lara Trump, Wilbur Ross et al may have played as clueless out here in the cheap seats,  but served to reinforce traditional Paul Ryan small government talking points, where every social calamity can be addressed via a bake sale or barn raising.

It’s too easy to say that the enduring lesson of the shutdown is simply that Trump and his plutocrat Cabinet are hilariously clueless about how most of us live. The real story is much more grim: They are also trying to other us against one another, positing government workers as unpatriotic if they decline to work for free, and lazy for being unwilling to put the president’s interests ahead of their own.

Government workers have bought a brief respite from further financial calamity for a few weeks, but there is nothing currently on the political horizon that indicates we won't be right back here in three weeks. At least Trump won't have to face the specter of plane delays in and out of Atlanta for the Super Bowl. (Had he interfered with the High Rollers getting their footbaw on, they'd have been burning crosses on the White House lawn on Monday.)

And nothing changes the central thesis of the article: that the mass of Americans are two-three paychecks away from the economic abyss.


Within the Diner much discussion revolves around understanding the various vectors of collapse: fast collapse, slow collapse, Seneca cliff, plague, Carrington/electromagnetic pulse event, climate catastrophe,… how will collapse overtake us?  This screed's purpose is to suggest  that collapse is already here.

Testifying to Congress in the Clinton years, Fed Chair Alan Greenspan explained the success of the boom economy he led as based on what he called “growing worker insecurity,” and thus created the notion of "the precariat." In Greenspan's terms, when working people are insecure, they are unlikely to make demands. Good for business, good for investors.

 Noam Chomsky summarized:

… If working people are insecure, if they’re part of the precariat, living precarious existences, they’re not going to make demands, they’re not going to try to get better wages, they won’t get improved benefits. We can kick ’em out, if we don’t need ’em. And that’s what’s called a “healthy” economy, technically speaking. And he was highly praised for this, greatly admired.

We should have expected nothing less from Greenspan, a member of the inner circle of Ayn Rand, Satan's vicar on earth. The current government shutdown, wholly created by the Orange Shitgibbon, now reaches its fourth week and reveals a new layer of precariat. Look around– over 10 million federal workers, with supposedly middle class jobs, find themselves playing insulin- or groceries- or rent- roulette. 

Like most Americans, federal workers live paycheck to paycheck, and have to scramble to meet their obligations. Since Individual-1 has a long and ignoble history of stiffing people who worked for him, this shutdown might have been expected. Yet the wall, that fetish object of the right, might have been advanced by legislation at any time over the last two years. Yet it was not, for the simple reason that most border state Republicans realize it's an idiotic thing to do with billions of dollars, and don't want any part of it. Only after the Democrats took control of the House did "the wall" rise to the level of "emergency."

That the rich get richer and the poor get poorer seems baked in to American life. "Middle class" means today that you're poor, but without a meth habit. In spite of the fact that we're told that the economy is strong, with unemployment at all-time low, most Americans do not have as much as a paycheck in savings and cannot withstand a major unplanned expense. Aside from the fortunate few who maintain an employer-supported 401(k), fewer workers have adequate savings for retirement. 

The functional cutoff point for being middle-class is whether the family has health insurance. Meaning real health insurance, as opposed to those predatory options that cost $600 dollars a month with $5000 deductibles, rendering them useful only in catastrophe.

One step, one inch at a time..and all by design. The squeeze on workers has been incremental and has unfolded over time, enabled by politicians who have dutifully passed the legislation handed them by the donors who own them. All leading to a pervasive sense of helplessness, and a collectively inability to imagine fixing what's broken: not only the flawed distribution of income, but larger issues like climate change. Complicated issues require long-term thinking, which is difficult to entertain when the wolf is at the door and you're figuring how to "stretch" your insulin to stay alive for the month.

A second generation of workers unable to save, living from paycheck to paycheck, and living in fear of uncertainty of the next missed paycheck comprise a new level of "precariat." Now swollen by 10 million federal workers, and sustained in part by spontaneous eruptions of generosity in the form of food pantries and relief efforts in evidence all over the country.


Two articles made similar points: that collapse American-style is already in progress and well on its way, the culmination of decades-long trends. The #Trumpshutdown brings those trends into relief.  

Why American Collapse Is Only Just Beginning (Not Ending)

Umair Haque describes Six Megatrends That Will Shape the Future, in terms readers of this website will recognize. He is not optimistic about summoning the political will to address the needs of ordinary people (working healthcare, higher education, safety nets, or retirement), because even  though those are what most Americans want, their efforts will run headlong into the waves of organized money marshaled to make sure such solutions never happen.   

The average American’s plight is so desperate that people in other rich countries can scarcely comprehend it. Dying from a lack of insulin? The elderly working at Walmart? Less than a week’s pay in savings? It sounds like a dystopian film, not reality. Yet this points to my second megatrend. American incomes have been flat since the 70s — but all the while, the basics of life, all the things above, from retirement to healthcare, have grown in price…

 

 

Authoritarians don’t need a majority — they never have, and that is foolish myth promoted by American intellectuals. It’s enough for fascists and tyrants to capture perhaps 30–40% of a nation to take over its institutions, norms, and future — because that 30% is like a wrecking ball, that can be used to intimidate, bluster, threaten, and bully (as long as the rest is split). That fringe, lunatic 30% now controls America wholesale — not just making any kind of progress not just impossible, but demanding wholesale regress: banning books, taking science out of schools, putting fundamentalist religion into public life, and so forth. That is my fifth megatrend, authoritarianism, and I am sorry to have to tell you that it will not stop with this President — it will continue, gain strength, and shape America for the foreseeable future…

…my sixth megatrend: ignorance. It is not just American economics, politics, society, and culture which have failed — at a deeper level, American thought has failed. Its intellectuals cannot explain decline, its pundits predict it, its gurus understand it, or its leaders fix it. That is because American ideas became ideologies — capitalism, individualism, aggression, cruelty, rationalism, selfishness, greed — which are all obsolete now.

Normalcy bias keeps us underestimating the breadth of financial stresses on our neighbors, and blind to the human toll of living with collapse with the wolf at the door. We become numb to the overwhelming despair, rage, and anxiety of living in a collapsing society. Many have responded to our neighbors' need with spontaneous outpourings of relief for the affected. But such decency can only deflect the trends of larger American society that is increasingly broke, and as unable to keep its promises as it is to maintain paved roads.


Daisy Luther's article, Here’s What an American Economic Collapse Could Actually Look Like, is worth the read. 

Image result for what american collapse could look like

When we think of “economic collapse” we think of the desperation documented in places like Venezuela or Greece. Starvation, lack of medical care, and waves of suicide by people who simply can’t cope: an apocalyptic breakdown that is immediately visible.

Here in America, Luther also notes collapse is gradual, It will seem like it’s just individual families having a hard time, with money problems out of our hands. The shutdown illuminates a financial divide getting larger. Expenses that are normal will soon become luxuries. How much of a stretch is it to imagine that no one will afford to pay their utility bills? 

Jefferson County in Alabama is the state’s most populous county and also its poorest. One of the poorest of those poor areas is Birmingham, Jefferson County’s largest city. Here water and sewerage bills have quadrupled in the last 15 years and with combined sewerage and water bills coming in at around $300 a month, this leaves the same amount out of the average social security check of $600 a month to cover everything else, food, clothing, and all other utilities. Low paid workers, of which there are many fare no better.

Many people have opted to buy drums of water from petrol stations rather than pay their ever increasing bills. They use these drums of water for drinking, washing and in their portable toilets which can be seen dotting back yards across the area, the modern version of the outhouse. They pay a fee to a sanitation company to remove the waste. It’s cheaper than letting the city take care of it.

Rather than expecting single vectors of large scale catastrophe, look closer to home.  Take a clear-eyed look at the decline that’s already at hand, then consider our options in a world where only rich people can afford electricity, running water and food all at the same time. As we remember that the average American lifespan has decreased for the third consecutive year, and that many fellow citizens find themselves living hand to mouth in a developing nation.


Two existential threats shadow these observations and pose existential threats to humanity:  the threat of nuclear war, with us since 1945. and environmental catastrophe, obscured by a propaganda system that tries to convince people that climate change is just a liberal hoax.

We find ourselves slipping bit by bit down the trajectory John Michael Greer has titled the Long Descent—the process by which every previous human civilization has ended in a dark age. Not something that can be stopped or reversed; merely observed as it unfolds. The normalcy bias noted above tells us that this is as bad as it can get— right? That things cannot possibly get much worse —  and at every juncture, we will go on being painfully wrong.

Collapse is not at hand in America. Collapse is here.


banksy 07-flower-thrower-wallpaperSurly1 is an administrator and contributing author to Doomstead Diner. He is the author of numerous rants, screeds and spittle-flecked invective here and elsewhere. He lives a quiet domestic existence in Southeastern Virginia with his wife Contrary. Descended from a long line of people to whom one could never tell anything, all opinions are his and his alone, because he paid full retail for everything he has managed to learn.

Knuts 4 Knives – Dagger Disease

youtube-Logo-4gc2reddit-logoOff the keyboard of RE

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Published on the Doomstead Diner on January 20, 2019

Spoiler Alert – The Bowie Knife Wins

 

2019 Collapse Survey Still OPEN.  Get your opinions counted before it closes!

Discuss this article at the Doomsteading Table inside the Diner

 

I'm taking a break this week from doing more survey analysis on the 2019 Collapse Survey to cover a favorite Prepper Topic of mine, KNIVES!  I am a sufferer of DD, Dagger Disease, listed in the DSM V as BOD, or Blade Obsessive Disorder.  I am not the only sufferer of this malady here on the Diner, C5 also is a victim of this psychological dysfunction.  Recently he wrote an article detailing some of his issues, which I published on the Diner this week.  I decided I should expand on the topic some, since although our syndromes have quite a bit in common, there are also significant variations in the etiology of the disease in both of us.  More on that in the main body of the article below.

Far as the Survey goes, I've been at that project for over a month and I needed a break.  However, we still have a good deal of analysis to do, and I will get back to it likely for next Sunday Brunch article.  Next article will be an overview of the Political Sewer we find ourselves in, not just in the FSoA but all across the globe in both the "rich" 1st World Industrialized Nations as well as their Slaves mired in 3rd World poverty.  Results on this portion of the Survey come in quite as interesting as the Energy questions and the Demographic breakdown  The Survey remains OPEN at this time, so you can still get your opinions counted in the final tally if you take it.

Now onto the topic for the day, KNIVES!

RE

 

As tools go for the Prepper, there is nothing more important than having a good knife.  Eustace Conway or Cody Lundin might be able to survive out in the wilderness without a knife, but about nobody else could.  Even Eustace said it would be a lot easier with his knife.

Knives along with the Hand Axe are our oldest tools, dating back to just after we came down from the trees to overrun the Earth with our Biomass.

Related image

Image result for stone tools knife axe

In the intervening time, Knife Technology has substantially changed of course, the biggest change coming from the development of Metallurgy around 10,000 years ago, the same time period where Homo Saps left the world of the Hunter-Gatherer to become a Sedentary Agricultural Civilization.  Also around the same time the Wheel was invented and warfare became much larger in scale also.  I have written on this topic in the past, all these things are closely intertwined in the "progress" of Human Civilization.  Today though we are just focusing on Knives, the most basic form of a bladed tool.  I'll go into more about the history of knives and the development of derivative bladed tools in an article in the future some time, if I stay above ground long enough to write it anyhow.

Anyhow, in his recent article, C5 put on display some of his collection of knives, which is quite impressive overall.

collection 3

collection 2

Do you notice something in common about most of these blades?

They are almost all BIG.  Make that HUGE in some cases!

This because besides suffering from BOD, C5 also has a severe case of BMD, Big Man's Disease.  C5 measures in around 6'3", and for him a blade needs to big and hefty for it to be worthy of respect.  In fact, people with BMD generally only respect other things and people that are also big. However, on the Diner, C5 comes in rather average to small in height.

Diner Lucid Dreams tops the stratosphere rolling in at 6'6".

Diner Roamer comes in at 6'5".

Diner Surly comes in around 6'4".

Diner Eddie sniffs the thin air at 6'3".

Diner K-Dog also around 6'3"

(heights listed are all visual estimates, I never took a tape measure to this)

Left to Right: RE, Eddie, Haniel, Lucid Dreams, Bertie.  The two Tall Guys are the ones standing.  The 3 Small Guys are the ones relaxing reclining against the Dome.  Photo taken at the first Diner Convocation at Monolithic Domes down in Texas in 2014.

Now, if we were assembling a Basketball Team, we would be doing pretty good, at least at the Collegiate Level anyhow.  A little small overall by NBA standards, but really we only need to recruit one 7 Footer from China or Nigeria to fill the role at Center, and we could be competitive there too.  This of course is assuming we all were young and healthy and in our Prime athletic years of course, not the disfigured Cripples some of us are today. lol.  LD and Surly at Power Forward.  Why do I put Surly at Power Forward even though he is not as tall as Roamer?  Because Surly is not just tall, he's a BIG man in many senses of the word (he has to be pretty big to put up with my bullshit all the time. lol).  You run into Surly trying to drive to the basket for a layup, and it would be like hitting a brick wall.  Two people in that collision, and one of them is going down, and it's NOT Surly.  Really he belongs on the Defensive Line in the NFL with the Purple People Eaters of Alan Page, Carl Eller, Jim Marshall and Gary Larsen, not in the NBA on the Diner Team, but we're assembling a Basketball Team here, not a Football Team.

Where does RE fit in on this team of Big Men?  I am the Diner small man, coming in at 5'7" before I started shrinking due to my spinal problems.  So I would probably be the Manager of the Team.  Small men often fill this role.  For instance, both Julius Caesar and Napoleon Bonaparte measured in at 5'7" along with RE.

Image result for julius caesar   Related image

Alexander the Great came in a Meat Package even smaller than that, measuring in at an even 5'0".

Image result for alexander the great

If all it took to be Competitive in the survival game over the Millenia, small men like myself would have been bred out of existence in the distant past, but that didn't happen because there are many advantages to being small.  For instance, you fit way better into Compact Carz and Airplane seats!  I get a good chuckle every time I have a Big Man sit down in the seat next to me on the Jet as he tries to wedge himself into the seat with his knees about an inch away from his chin.  lol.  If we ever are to get off the Earth and colonize the Final Frontier of Outer Space, it will be small men who do it, we fit better on Rocket Ships also and consume less resources

However, I wouldn't be happy just managing the team, I wanna Play Ball too!  So RE would take the role as Point Guard in the back court as ball handler, stealer and fast break man and passer to the Big Men.  The role played by Calvin Murphy, along with "Tiny" Nate Archibald , two of the best guards in NBA history measuring in at my height of 5'7"..

Do you know at one time I could stuff a basketball?  Who says White Men can't Jump?  Back in HS playing after school ball on the courts of Stuyvesant Town which was right across the street from Stuyvesant, my HS, I decided I need to learn to stuff the ball.  What a great sure fire method of getting 2 points!  I was always jealous of the Big Boys who could do this so I set myself the task of being able to do it also.  At the time Stuy Town was owned by Metropolitan Life, they went Bankrupt in the 2008 Financial crisis though.

Anyhow, it took me most of my Sophomore year to be able to do this.  Besides having to get some serious altitude off the ground when you are my height, I also had the problem my hands are too small to palm the ball.  About the biggest ball I can palm is about Volleyball size.  So I had to develop the technique of carrying the ball palm up while flying to the basket, then turning it over right before I stuffed it.  I needed a decent run up for this, I couldn't do it from standing, so it only happened a few times on a fast break when playing full court, which wasn't often, mostly we played 3-on-3 man half-court B-Ball.  It was a great thrill for me the few times I pulled it off.  Everybody was suitably impressed, including the girls watching the game. 🙂

At one time I could also do Standing Backflips. That's me on my Honeymoon in the central square in Nice at the right pulling off this stunt.  My wife also could do it.  How many of the Big Men here were ever able to do that?  Not many if any I would wager.  There are many reasons why  gymnastics is for the world of the small, many biological and physics reasons for this, I won't go into it now.  At any rate though, the skills you develop in that sport serve you very well in many other disciplines in the world of sports and in the Martial Arts.  Unfortunate I became a Cripple in my dotage here, it would have been a great challenge combatting the Zombies with my Knives and my athletic skills of yesteryear.  Oh well. 🙁

So now we get to see my collection of Knives along with C5s.  I come from a different world than he does in the Land of Blades, I come from the Cooking end of it.  We're the Panty Waists of the Knife World, not only do we Eat Quiche, we make it too!  However, among knife experts, there is probably nobody better with a Blade than a Japanese Sushi Chef, not even Surgeons are generally this good

I am not this good of course, but I'm not too bad either.  Back when I worked at Capsuto Freres, slicing, dicing, chopping and deboning the various meats that rolled in for the main chefs to cook up was my primary job.  I wasn't one of the lead chefs, I worked "on the line" of 2nd and 3rd level chefs in the kitchen.  I wasn't a culinary school graduate, no Credential here for me.  The Head Chef was a friend of mine though from when I was working on Wall Street and would spend copious amounts of money ordering up the meals they served while I wined and dined the Twyla Tharp dancers, and he got me the job when I walked away from that life as a future Master of the Universe Bankster.  So here below is my main selection of Knives I use regularly when cooking nowadays:

Working our way down the line here from Left to Right, the biggest knife I will use with any regularity is the 7" Meat Cleaver.  It's not as long as the 10" Chef's Knife next to it, but it is substantially thicker and heavier.  It's big enough to whack through any bones I ever have to deal with, anything bigger they whack through it with a meat saw at the Butcher shop and do a much cleaner job of it.  If I am doing this rather big job out in the field, I use a Hacksaw, not a Knife.  Or I would just hack it apart with a hatchet.  I don't see any need for a really BIG Knife when cutting up a mammal carcass.  The 10" Chef Knife is a great Utility blade in the Kitchen, you can do most normal tasks with it if you keep it sufficiently sharp.  It's a little bigger than most professional Chefs work with though, the standard there is usually an 8" Chef's Knife or a Santoku design for the Japanese.  Your wrist doesn't get as fatigued when doing a lot of slicing, and the smaller knives are generally more maneuvarble.  These days because I generally only prepare small portions for myself, I usually work with a 5" Santoku as my Go-To Knife.  I keep this one wicked sharp, you could shave with it.  I would never do that though, I have razors for that task.

The 11" long blade is a Slicer, which you use for such tasks as slicing up your Thanksgiving Turkey for a nice presentation on the Table before that traditional Pig Out event of Mass Consumption, or for nicely thin slicing a fillet of Salmon for Gravlax or of Cold Smoked Nova Scotia Lox for your Bagel.  The smallest blade there I use is a Paring Knife, good for things like coring Apples or getting the seeds out of Green Peppers before you stuff them with pork sausage, mozzarella cheese and marinara sauce. Yum!

You'll notice that I don't keep my kitchen knives in the typical Butcher Block style countertop organizer sold with many knife sets, this because I bought most of my knives individually over time and also because I like the portability of the roll up carry bag I have for them.  This is the type of bag Culinary School students use to carry their tools to school every day, where you are often required to have your own set of knives and the instructor will come around and test them for sharpness as well.  Besides Knowledge, there is nothing more important in the kitchen than having the right knife for the right job, and that it is honed to the right level of sharpness for that job also.  You do NOT hone a Meat Cleaver to the same degree of sharpness as a a slicer, filet knife or even a Chef's Knife.  You'll dull the blade after 2 or 3 chops through even smaller bones like chicken legs.  You want a medium level of sharpness here, most of the work gets done by the mass you are moving and how fast you chop.

One Blade you do NOT see in this collection of Kitchen Knives is the Bowie Knife I have pictured with the Carrot at the top of the page.  This because of course about NOBODY uses a Bowie Knife in the Kitchen, and frankly I can't see any reason for them at all unless maybe you are Crocodile Dundee going Mano-a-Mano with Alligators in the Aussie Swamps of Northern Queensland.  Or maybe if you are Kwai Chang Caine in a Knife Fight with Sam Starr the Half-Breed in a Louisiana Bar over a Cajun Queen.

The fact is that up until just recently (like 2 weeks ago), I never owned a Bowie Knife in my whole life, not even in the Hunting years.  I never could see a good reason for such a knife.  For skinning and boning and quartering up a carcass, a 4-6" blade is plenty.  If you are the Field Farmer type, for bigger tasks something like a Machete is going to work better, and for some smaller tasks something like a Bill Hook will work better.  For something like cutting grasses and grains, you'll want something with a longer handle like a Scythe.  Where does a Bowie Knife fit in here?

The reason I now own this Bowie Knife is in fact not the Knife at all.  I ended up getting that basically for FREE as a Bonus here.  The reason I bought it was for the SHEATH.  LOL.  I was out shopping on the net looking for a Belt Sheath for my 10" Chef's Knife, and the cheapest one I could find that looked any good at all was $20.  I wanted the sheath because when you are in the kitchen in Culinary School you often need 2-3 knives handy to work with rather than stowed in your roll-up bag.  I'm hoping to go to culinary school down in the Lower 48 this summer as a late life knowledge gathering exercise and just to get better at cooking in general and have a Credential to back that up with.  Courses run about 6 Weeks in length and I could get the certificate over a couple of years, if I live that long.  So anyhow, I found this Bowie Knife ON SALE from smile.amazon.com for $29 (designate the Sustaining Universal Needs Foundation of Boiling Springs, SC as your Charity organization!), including FREE shipping since I am an Amazon Prime member shopper. 🙂  I judged from the photos that the sheath that came with this knife was big enough for my 10" Chef's Knife, which it is.  So the Knife portion of this purchase really only cost me $5 or so, half the cost of a pack of smokes!

Here's the new Bowie Knife in comparison to some of my other knives:

In terms of weight and heft, the Bowie Knife comes in roughly similar to the Meat Cleaver, both in the 450-550 gram neighborhood, around 1 lb.  Heavy knives by kitchen standards, but relative lightweights compared to the kind of blades C5 likes to buy (or make).  You could in fact use the Bowie Knife for many of the same tasks you use the Meat Cleaver for, but the cleaver is a better design for this.  It packs its mass into a shorter length with most of it directly behind the impact zone of the blade, while the Bowie knife is longer and distributes out the impact more.  You're going to have to swing the Bowie Knife harder than the Cleaver to make the same chop.

The Physics of Chopping Knives

Leyt's do a quick review of the Physics here to explain why a Cleaver is better than a Bowie for chopping up your larger pieces of the dead animal carcass for future consumption.  First the Bowie Knife:

The Knife is balanced on the scale so the Center of Mass (CoM) is right over the scale.  This keeps it from tipping either way.  As you can see, it comes in a little under 450 grams.  I shot the image from the back side of the knife so you could see about how thic a piece of steel was used to grind out this blade.  What is important to note here is that the Impact Zone, the part of the blade that contacts whatever it is you are chopping up is around 3" away from the CoM.  This will cause the blade to tip upward when you make contact no matter how strong you are although a beefer forearm and wrist joint will help some.  Generally speaking though you can't get the full force of your chopping stroke into the blade.

Now let's contrast this with the Meat Cleaver:

As you can see the Cleaver is actually heavier than the Bowie Knife even though it is much shorter in length coming in at 7" for this model.  You can get bigger ones, but I've never had a need for anything bigger than this in the kitchen.  In a Butcher shop maybe, but even there you would probably use a power saw for the really big jobs.  They're kind of antiquated until we don't have the JUICE coming out of the wall sockets anymore.  The reason the blade comes in heavier than the Bowie is because of the shape and design of it.  Thickness of the Steel is about the same, but the Cleaver is about twice as wide as the Bowie.  This shape also changes where the CoM is located and where the center of the Impact Zone is.  On the Cleaver, the CoM is further forward on the blade and the Impact Zone further back, so they are only about an inch apart.  Hardly any torque at all on your wrist when you make contact, and much less fatiguing if you got a lot of Dead Moose to chop up.  Small guys don't use brawn to get the job done, we use our brains and good knowledge of the principles of Physics. :).

About the only advantage the Bowie has here is that because of its leength you can develop more speed with it, which affects the Kinetic Energy you are delivering to the meat by a Square Law.  K.E.=1/2 MV2  where M is the Mass of the Knife and V is the Velocity it is moving at when it contacts the Beef carcass.  However, this is not that great an advantage because the Fulcrum of the swing is around your shoulder joint, which is around 2' away from the Impact Zone of the knife.  The difference here in length of the Radius is only maybe 3", or about 12.5% increase.  This doesn't speed it up all that much.

You also have to of course consider the DANGER involved in swinging around a fucking Bowie Knife in a Butcher Shop, or even out Field Dressing a Moose.  You don't wanna be anywhere NEAR the guy swinging that fucking behemoth! lol.  Comparitively speaking although also not without its own risks, the Cleaver is a much safer and better design for choping than a Bowie is, which is why Bowie Knives are not found in the Kitchen! lol.

It's even longer than the 10" Chef's Knife, and you could use it for slicing stuff up with also, although this would get tiring if you had a lot of slicing to do on your shift.  It has another problem besides this though when you buy one, it's DULL.  One of the reasons these big knives come in so cheap is the manufacturers don't put the time into the finishing process to send out a really sharp blade.  They save time and money this way, probably at least 25% of the cost of the blade.  All my cooking knives and my Damascus Steel Skinning knife you see in the photo above came straight outta da box sharp enough to use without any additional work by the new owner, although in my case I always give them some additional sharpening to really make them quality tools for Culinary School.   More on Blade Sharpening in another article at some point.  The Bowie Knife though took a couple of days of sharpening work to get it up to speed even as just a Chopping Knife.  Do NOT try doing the Tomato Test with this knife!  It's not sharp enough for that, but then I am never going to slice paper thin tomato slices with it either. DEFINITELY do not try to Shave with it, unless you want to pull the hairs out by the roots rather than cut them off.  In fact, after this little demonstration, I'll probably never use it in the kitchen again, but it was fun doing this little experiment. 🙂

Now the moment you have all been waiting for…  I put the freshly sharpened Bowie Knife up against a Carrot to do some Chopping with.  If you try this at home, make sure you keep your fingers out of the way, they have about as much chance as the Carrot had in this demonstration.  The Carrot lost the contest badly.  It was a rout.  In Slow-Mo to fully appreciate the Power of the Knife.

Wouldn't it be nice if those chops were Bankster Necks and not a Carrot?  Still, there are better knives for that task also.  A nice Katana Blade from the Edo Period in Japan would be ideal for that job.

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Responding to Collapse, Part 5: finding a small town

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Published on The Easiest Person to Fool on December 28, 2018

 

 

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In my last post I started talking about moving from the city to a small town as a way to make adapting to collapse easier, and I listed a number of criteria for choosing a small town. Today we'll be looking at some of those criteria in greater detail.

As before, credit goes to Don Hayward, Joe Clarkson from the comment section of this blog, and, new this time, to Category 5, from the Dark Green Mountain blog and the Doomstead Diner.

Looking back on the criteria I laid out last time, I can see that I should have divided them into two sections— picking a town where you can live while BAU is still working and then picking a town that will also be livable after BAU is no longer capable of supporting us. For the next while we will find ourselves living in two worlds—trying to make enough of a success of life in BAU so that we can afford to disentangle ourselves from BAU and get something started to replace it.

So, to get started, just exactly how far from the city do you need to be? I am very much a "shades of gray" guy, so my answer will be in terms of a spectrum rather than a single hard number. Here in rural Canada we tend to talk about distances in terms of driving time. I would guess that an hour amounts to around 50 miles. I live about three hours from Toronto, around two hours from many other cities to the south and east of here, and about an hour and a quarter from the small city to the northeast. I am not considering a move to get farther away, so if pressed for a definite answer I would say somewhere between an hour and two hours is a sufficient minimum distance. To be cautious, err on the long end of that range, and of course I'm not saying you shouldn't be more than 2 hours from a city. On the other hand, you may find you need to be close to a city for a while yet and accordingly place yourself at the lower end of the range, while remaining aware of the greater risk that probably entails.

Many cities are quite close together and there are whole areas where there is nowhere far enough from a city to meet my distance criteria. Moving away from your current city but toward another one clearly won't help.

By the time collapse has progressed far enough for this distance to be a real concern, transportation fuels will be in short supply, either because of genuine shortages, market malfunctions or supply chain breakdowns. Initially they will be "rationed by price" to the point where they are not affordable for most of us, or they will be outright rationed by the authorities. Then there will be intermittent interruptions in the supply. And at some point beyond that these fuels will not be available at any price. So the distance from the city would have to be covered on foot or bicycle, making it, in effect, considerably longer. That two hour drive would be a multi-day walk for most people, if they could manage to do it at all.

There are several reasons for wanting to be this far away:

  • in the city there are limited opportunities for adaptation in the face of infrastructure and supply chain failures—the resources you need are just not available locally. You need to be far enough away from population centres that the local resources can support the local population
  • there will be social unrest and civil disobedience (much of it justified) in many cities—violence that you don't want to get caught up in
  • as conditions worsen in the cities, there will occasionally be waves of refugees fleeing from them. I think the aim of people in small towns like mine should to help those refugees, but if there are too many we won't be able to help them and things will go badly for both them and us. So, we want to be far enough away that the distance acts as a filter and reduces their numbers to something manageable.
  • it seems likely that there will epidemics from time to time, especially as public health systems start to fall apart. It would be good to have some distance between you and any city that is being ravaged by an epidemic. A sort of geographical quarantine.

But the main reason you're moving to a small town is for what's there, not what you are trying to get away from.

What size of small town you should be looking for?

Zero is the wrong answer. As Douglas Ruskhoff says, "being human is a team sport." You can't accomplish much, especially in the long term, as an isolated individual or family. Even a group of a few families will find themselves struggling just to survive. In my opinion, remote, isolated survivalist compounds or even lifeboat eco-villages have little future. More people means a greater range of skills and talents and more redundancy in the support systems you need to set up.

I don't think there is much hope of retreating to the wilderness and surviving by hunting and gathering, either. There is very little wilderness left and what is left is not so completely untouched as it once was. The effect of this is to make hunting and gathering more difficult and it is, in any case, a skilled and demanding lifestyle, especially if you weren't born to it. Learning those skills, when you aren't living in a group where most people already have them, would be very challenging.

What you really need is a community that is viable now, as part of "Business as Usual", and which can adapt as collapse progresses and then still be viable under post collapse conditions.

Now I will agree that for some activities a lone individual is best, and for others 2 to 5 people is ideal. But these are specific, short duration jobs within a larger context.

At this point some of you are probably thinking of "Dunbar's number"—"the cognitive limit to the number of people with whom one can maintain stable social relationships—relationships in which an individual knows who each person is and how each person relates to every other person." That number is somewhere between 100 and 250 people, and there is definitely something to the idea. But I would say that this is more like the lower limit on size for a viable community. Larger communities are made up of smaller, overlapping circles of people who know each other in the "Dunbar" sense.

The upper limit on the size of a viable community is determined by how many people the surrounding geography can support without fossil fuel powered agriculture and shipping. Typically that would be a few thousand people, possibly as many as 10 to 20 thousand in ideal circumstances. A counter example would be Edo (now Tokyo) during the days of the shoguns, which grew to over one million people without the benefit of fossil fuels or modern technology. But these days climate change is reducing the carrying capacity of almost every area, and you must remember that the size of small towns will increase first as former locals return from the city and then again as refugees arrive. Set your upper limit around ten thousand to begin with.

So, distance and size will help narrow things down somewhat, as will the climate change based criteria I mentioned previously. But still, which town to pick?

Probably the most important consideration is connections in the community. If you grew up in a small town, if you still have family there, or even close friends, then that town has to be very high on your list of places to consider. If you have limited resources, those connections may prove vital in making your move possible.

Next, I think you have to be looking for a place where you can find accommodations and earn a living in the short run while "BAU" is still in operation. As Category 5 suggests, once you have found a likely looking small town, it would be a good idea to live there in rental accommodation for a year or two in order to get to know the place better. It takes more than a few brief visits to really size a place up and figure out how to fit in. And for those with limited resources, renting on an ongoing basis may in any case be a better alternative than taking on a mortgage you can't really cope with. In today's uncertain market, it's wise let your landlord take the risk of investing in real estate.

Financial considerations also have to be very high on your list of priorities. Eddie at the Doomstead Diner has written an excellent article entitled "Some Inconvenient Truths About Collapse Economics". He challenges the idea, common among kollapsniks, that the only things worth investing in are preparations, gold, silver and farmland. At some point in the future that may be true, but you have to have a plan for surviving in the meantime, and that will likely involve taking part in an economy that you know has a limited shelf life—even putting some of you money into conventional BAU style investments in the short term.

I'll be going into more detail on this in a future post, but some degree of preparation is a very good idea and you should spend some money on it, but not every cent you have. It is also good to have some ordinary cash on hand, and even some actual physical gold and/or silver carefully hidden where you can get at it if you need it. Farm land, while it is tempting, is currently very expensive per acre and since it comes in large chunks, likely to be out of reach for most people. Remote farms may cost less, but leave you too isolated.

When I talk about "collapse progressing", it may sound like I am envisaging a uniform run downhill, but my regular readers will know this is not the case. Collapse progresses unevenly, unsteadily and unequally. This is good news if you are thinking of moving, because there is likely some place where things are better than where you are now, especially if you are flexible and willing to adapt to a new situation. There are "eddies" in the stream of collapse, places where things occasionally stand still or even improve somewhat for a while.

I think this is very true of both real estate and employment considerations.

A great many cities are experiencing real estate bubbles today. Accommodation costs a lot to buy or rent there and the situation is only getting worse. This is less about the demand for housing and more about malfunctioning markets and people with money trying to find somewhere to invest it at a good rate of return. But since there is no real demand to justify those real estate prices they will eventually decline, and decline precipitously. The trick is to get out with your assets intact before that bubble bursts.

Aside from high prices caused by investment bubbles, there is also often a clear relationship between distance from good employment opportunities and the cost of housing. Housing in small towns away from big employment centers (which are almost always in cities) is very likely to be less expensive. So if you don't mind a longer commute, if you can telecommute, or if you can make the big leap of finding work away from the city, you will likely find housing that costs less.

But I've read that in the United States towns with more affordable housing also offer jobs that pay less, so moving there may not solve your problems. It seems to me that this will be determined by what level the minimum wage is pegged at, if there is one. So states (provinces here in Canada) with a decent minimum wage would be a good place to look for work.

Handymen and skilled tradesmen are most always in demand, as are skilled professionals. Even small towns have a few relatively unskilled jobs in service industries and there will be seasonal work in agriculture and tourism. One of the few justifiable reasons for delaying this move is to find a job to support you in your new location. Just don't make this an excuse for not moving.

I live in a small town that is in an economic eddy, being a bedroom community for a nearby nuclear plant which employs several thousand people. (It's one of the largest nuclear generating developments in the world.) This is "energy sprawl", where lower EROEI energy sources require a lot more infrastructure, and just happen to create jobs building, operating and maintaining that infrastructure in the process. So such opportunities do exist.

How you approach these opportunities will largely depend on your own personal circumstances—your socioeconomic class, in particular.

The Upper Class

If you are a member of the upper class—the "one percent"—you can do as you please, at least for the moment. But in a really serious financial crash, your wealth is likely to evaporate, and you probably don't have the sort of skills that will be needed in the aftermath. For all I care, you can jump out a fortieth floor window and end it all quickly. But if you hope to survive, you'd better be prepared to fit in and keep a low profile, among people who are likely to be resentful of the rich, who they see (correctly) as responsible for the mess the world is in.

No doubt though, you will be focusing on ways of keeping BAU rolling along and maintaining your status within it. Good luck with that.

The Middle Class

Indeed, a willingness to let go of BAU should probably be seen as the distinguishing difference between the middle and upper classes. Though currently, especially in the U.S., many middle class folk mistakenly think that if they support policies that benefit the upper class they will themselves eventually be able to ascend into that class. Of course, the upper class does everything they can to encourage that attitude, with no intention at all of benefitting anyone but themselves.

There are two traps here: one is thinking that you have much chance of joining the upper class and the other is thinking that it would do you any good if you did. If you're currently in the middle class, you likely have enough resources to respond to collapse in a fairly effective fashion. Don't miss the opportunity.

If you already own a home or at least have quite a bit of equity in it, you may well be able to sell it, buy a house in a small town and still have enough cash left over to retire early and invest in preparations. You should do this soon, before the real estate bubble bursts. If you are already retired, you can probably do the same thing and end up in better financial shape than if you'd stayed in the city.

If you are middle class but younger, you are likely working at a job that is keeping you in that class, and this will make the proposition of leaving the city much harder to consider seriously. But perhaps you can commute or even telecommute from a small town. Or find a small town with a local industry that needs people with your skills. If you are renting or have only recently bought a home and don't yet have much equity built up in it, then renting in a small town may cost you substantially less than your current rent or mortgage payments. Don't make the mistake of believing that real estate prices will keep going up forever.

All middle class people should look ahead to days of further economic contraction and consider taking a "deliberate descent" approach to life. That is, learn to live with less, so that when that is all you have left, it won't be so much of a shock. As John Michael Greer has said, "collapse now and avoid the rush." And of course, living frugally will make your resources last longer.

The Lower Class

It can be difficult to see where the line should be drawn between the middle and lower classes, so I am going to simplify things and lump everyone who has a somewhat decent, secure job with benefits, and who owns a home or is renting while saving with a reasonable expectation of being able to buy a home in the foreseeable future, into the middle class. We'll leave other assets and debts as an issue for another day.

Below that is the lower class which for the purposes of this discussion includes, at the upper end, those who have a job and can afford accommodation and a vehicle to drive to work, down through those who have to choose between accommodation and a vehicle, and may end up working but living in a vehicle, through to those who are jobless and homeless. The majority of these people, if they have a job, are members of the "precariat". That is, their job is not in any way secure and does not pay enough to make the rest of their lives secure either. If you are a member of the precariat, you don't need to be told about "deliberate descent"—you're already living it, though I would guess not willingly.

No doubt it is somewhat presumptuous on my part, as a relatively "fat cat" middle class guy, to offer advice to lower class people. Though I did grow up on a small family farm in a family that was just barely middle class at best. And my kids have certainly spent their share (and more) of time in the precariat. But I don't really have a lot of experience at being poor and when I have problems, I am accustomed to using money to solve them. For people in the lower class that’s rarely an option.

Nonetheless, I have a few things to say that I hope may be of help. Lower class people are, I think, farther along the collapse road than the rest of us, and may well be less bothered as things fall further apart—it will all just be more of the same shit to them. Psychologically they are quite resilient but, materially speaking, they have very limited resources to deal with specific problems as they arise, and in that sense they will be harder hit. So, for lower class people, the need to get out of the cities is no less, but the challenge of doing so may be greater.

Many of the problems faced by people in the lower class come from the degree of isolation in which they find themselves. I think there are great possibilities for small groups of disadvantaged people to get together and share housing, food, transportation and so forth. Sadly, we have largely forgotten the skills for getting along in such circumstances, or have been convinced by those who are in power that such skills are worthless. The neo-liberal approach of using money to mediate all relationships between people leaves us at the mercy of those who control the money and that of course is exactly what they want. I think there is a lot of potential in various sorts of co-operative ventures to break out of this trap.

I've been doing a bit of reading at Sharable, a website that "aims to empower people to share for a more resilient, equitable, and joyful world". This is essentially what I am talking about here. It would certainly be a move in the direction of the adaptations we'll have to make down the road in order to succeed in small isolated communities.

Well, I think that's enough for now. Next time we'll continue with this, looking closer at criteria for choosing a small town as place to live as BAU goes further downhill and we can no longer rely on it completely for the necessities of life

C5 Says, I Like Big Knives And I Can Not Lie

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Published on the Doomstead Diner on January 16, 2018

roadway

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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With your Host, Cabin Fever Category5.

I am SOOOOOOOOO Bored. I really hate winter…and there is not thing one I can do about it. I’m just not a winter guy. I’m also suffering some severe writers block.

All the snow had melted away since my Happy Snowed In Day post. https://darkgreenmountainsurvivalresearchcentre.wordpress.com/2018/11/22/c5-snowed-in-for-the-winter-and-the-snow-plow-pocalypse-end-day/

It came back with a vengeance last night. This is our drive way this morning. I’m glad I was able to push through it with the newish Subaru Forester or we would have been stuck till spring. I’ll have some cutting to do. Thus the post.

I’m Lying. I’m Just bored and in writers block…but that is an excuse to put up a BS post for entertainment only that was already floating around in my head and just required some photos. I pored some warm water on the internet receiver, antenna thingy to melt the ice off it for this. It’s not my usual type of post. Jesus on a snowplow. Who needs to hear another survivalist talk about knives.

Yawn.

Who am I kidding. It was really just an excuse to post this.

I’ve watched that dozens of times. Always makes me laugh.

I was trying to send a photo to The Diner and it wouldn’t load…. so I decided to to show some of my collection of sharp and pointy things and this would be the easiest way to do it. I have been collecting for years.

These are a few of my home made one of a kinds.

home made

The lowest quality is the makeshift Gladius that was the result of other bored winters. Its just a piece of pig iron I shaped with a file. It used to have a dog scull on it and was part of a two sword set that got rented out for movie props. I figured my art collectables weren’t worth keeping anymore, Apocalypse and all that, so I fired it in the wood stove with a hair dryer, dropped it in water then oiled it for the blackened finish that I like. It barely holds an edge but it is worth knowing in the improvised sword category. It will cleave. My next attempted will be done with a car leaf spring. Straight out of the book, Dies The Fire. A recommended read

The post apocalyptic, bearded ax started as a broken, rubberized  splitting ax handle. Having it say, “Warning- Wear Safety Glasses” was for dark giggles. I ground down the head from a different broken ax.

A friend was so impressed with the Ontario Knife Co, tactical Machete, one of my finest, beloved possessions, that he tried to recreate a primitive version. It didn’t work very good, so I re worked it and fired it into what you see above. This hangs on the woodstove and splits all my kindling.

While the camera was out…I got carried away. Soooo bored. Plus I needed to do some dusting and organizing of the knife shelf.

collecttion 1

I started out in life as a small knife guy. Still am. I made fun of “Survivalists” with Rambo knives. Still do. Most real work gets done with small knives. Besides work related jobs, I can easily open arteries in 6 places near the surface, with a 2 inch blade. I trained for that. It changed later in life when I wanted to be able to take an arm off that was reaching for a gun. Now days…and alot of what we will be talking about this year, I need to be able to cut through 2-3 inch branches. You can visually tell, which blades gets the most use. My beloved Ontario SP8, 10in machete. Biggest blade in the smallest package. I cut the head off a sheep with this baby. It gets in tighter spaces than a hatchet.  The only problem was the useless saw on the back. I eventually ground it off with a sander. It had to go because I use this as a draw knife for stripping bark. You also couldn’t Baton with it, for splitting large wood. It can now. OKC needs to re make this classic chopper without the saw… and just for me, one inch longer.

There is a , That’s not ten inches, joke in there somewhere but I’m getting nothing.

The one beside it is my daily carry around the farm. After the other one, I find it a bit lite. But visitors sure notice it right away.

Now lets go bigger.

collection 2

Some day, the bullets may be gone. Heck. Some day the guns may be gone. I wanted one quality sword to hand down.

collection 3

Always the showman. Post apocalyptic chic. Accessories make the man.

Not so much.

For a woman or smaller framed man, The rapier in one hand, the bayonet in the other, is a good house clearer.

What is the quickest way to to a persons heart? Straight through the fucking rib cage.

That leg bone sword was another of my creations and has been used in a couple episodes of The Outer Limits. It always gets a lot of attention when I wear it strapped to my back for SCA events. Its really just a big pointy stick.

This was only supposed to be a Me So Bored, BS post to keep me from doing this. Cabin Fever. Long winter to go. A house full of weapons. What could possibly go wrong.

Luckily, there was plenty of food in the pantry.

I can see that I will have to come back to this post another time, With actual Knife Related adaptation techniques. It will probably be “I Like Big Knives And I Can Not Lie- Redux- Addendum”. Same article… but with more info.

I hope you enjoyed the tour.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2019 Collapse Survey Results – The 500: Who are the Kollapsniks? – The Demographics

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Published on the Doomstead Diner on January 13, 2018

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Notes from RE:

1- Although the title says 500, I actually took this snapshot of the Stats when the numbers were between 430-435.  They are now at 558 as I publish this article.  I chose 500 because it sounds good and it's right between the 300 of Thermopylae and the 600 of the Light Brigade.  Percentages haven't changed much with the additional submissions since the snapshot was taken.  We will no doubt add quite a few more respondents with this article since I am leaving the survey open for the time being.  460 respondents marked the point at which the survey gained a 99% Confidence Level with a 6% Confidence Interval for a population size of 100,000, but more is always better when it comes to surveys.

Respondents who added their email addys will get a pdf of the survey results right around 500, depending when I take the snapshot.  More in depth analysis can be done with the spreadsheet, you can parse the numbers with that.  Contact me on the Diner if you are interested in doing a more detailed numerical analysis and have verifiable background with which to do it.

If you use the results of this survey in any academic papers or documents, please reference the Doomstead Diner as the source in your footnotes.  Also please inform me through the Contact Page on the Diner if you are going to use the survey or its charts and graphs in this way, or on you blogs if you have one.

No parts of this study may be used on commercial websites that use Advertising or sell Merchandise such as the Author's books, or which have Paywalls without the expressed consent of the Doomstead Diner and the Sustaining Universal Needs Foundation.  None of the charts and graphs may be altered in any way or the copyright and logos removed from those charts.

The Survey remains OPEN at this time.  Responses keep dribbling in and I don't want to leave anyone out of the final Tally.

2-  Most of the questions don't tally to the full 430 or so when I took the snapshot.  This because all respondents don't answer all questions.

3- Statistical Significance:  This is always a bone of contention with any survey.  How significant is it really?  How big is the population you are surveying?

It's tough to estimate exactly how many people were surveyed here across all the websites, but I'm putting the Outer Limit at 100,000.  r/collapse has the largest circulaton with almost 90,000 subscribers, but many of them no longer participate or read the sub anymore.  Also unlikely that in 2 weeks all the currently active redditors saw the links to the survey.  All the rest of the blogs and forums are much smaller, so 100,000 seems like a good outer limit here.

At this level of population, the Survey comes in with a 99% Confidence Level and a 6% Confidence Interval, IOW it's very significant for this size population.  It's likely quite accurate in its numbers.  Caculations done with the Survey Calculator on SurveySystems.com.

4- Question Structure Complaints:  Once again with all surveys, complaints come in with the way the questions are structured and what the answer choices are.  In this case I tried to give as many places for a free form write-in response as possible.  Many respondents took advantage of this and I will publish their responses in follow up articles or Inside the Diner in the Surveys thread.

5- "Americentric" Complaints:  Specific to this survey, several complaints came in that it was "Americentric", which really is not true.  There are a few questions specific to the Amerikan Political Sewer, but most of the questions are applicable to Kollapsniks who live anywhere at all.

 

Thanks to all the Kollapsniks from all websites who dropped in their 2 cents on this survey.  Special thanks to the following 7 websites which contributed the bulk of the opinions (sites with >5 Repsondents):

 

#1- Reddit r/collapse with 168 Submissions

#2- Cassandra's Legacy with 121 Submissions

#3- The Burning Platform with 98 Submissions

#4- The Doomstead Diner with 68 Submissions

#5-  Economic Undertow with 16 Submissions

#6- Our Finite World with 13 Submissions

#7- Truthdig with 7 Submissions

 

Each of these websites has a somewhat different readerhship, I'll make some general observations here from my time participating on all of these websites  as a (rather prolific, lol) commenter and TROLL. Before Admining my own site, I was a first class annoying troll in the commentariat of NUMEROUS websites, I can't even count them all anymore.  I was BANNED from most of them. lol.

 

#1- r/collapse: Like the rest of Reddit, r/collapse is dominated by social media freak Millenials.  Their education and knowledge of the problems we face is very diverse.  Some are well read up, others are fucking clueless idiots.  Their numbers are HUGE, dwarfing any of the single collapse websites.  Their Political viewpoints vary from the far right to the far left, leaning more toward the left.

#2- Cassandra's Legacy:  Prof. Ugo Bardi's Blog.  He teaches Physical Chemistry at the Univeristy of Firenza in Italy.   Ugo is a member of the Club of Rome and participated in the original Limits to Growth study done int he 1970s.  The website is LOADED with Academics with Ph.Ds.  It's one of the reasons we have such a high education level recorded in this survey.  Ugo and I collaborated on many video discussions of Collapse Issues which can be found on the Diner YouTube Channel.

#3- The Burning Platform: Run by Jim Quinn, a CPA who handles the books at the Wharton Biz Skule in the Ivy League.  A Baby Boomer who denies he is a Baby Boomer, for whom the 4th Turning by Strauss & Howe is the Bible of Collapse.  Very Right-Wing/Libertarian leaning website, with quite a vocal commentariat.  I praticipated on that site for a couple of years and wrote numerous contrarian articles there.  It was very entertaining. lol.

#4- The Doomstead Diner: My Doom Website, established in 2012 by myself and my co-Admin Surly and our Code Jockey tech designer Peter.  The #1 Go-To Website on the net for Collapse Newz.  Generally Left leaning politically, but we do have a few contrarian Libertarians who chip in their 2 cents as well.  A very contentious commentariat, not a place for the meek.  Don your Fireproof BVDs before you sign in. lol.

#5- Economic Undertow: Run by Steve Ludlum, aka Steve from Virginia.  An economic technical site with a very different from mainstream analysis you can get anywhere else, and usually right on the mark.  Steve also collaborated with me on many videos.  A relatively apolitical website.

#6- Our Finite World:  Run by Gail Tverberg, a former professional Actuary who does many charts and graphs to illustrate her POV on the energy problems we face.  OFW has become increasingly Doomerish over the years, although the site has little political spin at all, just some very vehement Nihilists.  Gail also collaborrated with me on numerous discussions and videos.  No discernible Political Spin to this website.

#7- Truthdig:  Chris Hedges website.  Chris is a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and an unabshed Socialist with a Capital S.  He himself does have a net worth in the $Millions$ though. lol.  He's a fabulous speaker and does great interviews as well.

 

Now, on to the charts from the survey.  For today, we look at the Demographic Questions.  I'll make a few brief comments beneath each chart.   For further analysis and discussion, visit the Survey Table inside the Diner.

 

Survey still OPEN

Survey now @ 558 Submissions

 

This was one of the more interesting (and colorful!) Doughnut charts on the survey.  The Political Spectrum from which Kollapsniks come is quite diverse, that's why the chart is filled with so many colors.

Of interest first is how few Doomers identify themselves as either traditional Demodopes or Repugnants.  The overwhelming majority of Kollapsniks are fed up with BAU in Washington (and their more local legislatures) and are abandoning these parties in droves, although on both sides of this artificial divide they mostly still do vote for one candidate or the other, because in the FSoA 3rd Party candidates simply can't win and just end up being spoilers for one side or the other.

Where most of them have migrated to in their thinking though is either to the Democratic-Socialists (best exemplafied in the FSoA so far by Bernie Sanders) or the Libertarians (best exmplified in the FSoA so far by Ron Paul and his Heir-Apparent Rand Paul).

More interesting to me than this were the number of respondents who identified themselves as either outright Fascist or Communist.  7% in total in this snapshot, holding fairly steady with the combined total now at 8%.  Communists lead Fascists 5%-3%.  I am fairly astounded though that this large a segment of the population will identify themselves outright with either political system.  Both have received tons of bad press over the years since WWII, and in Amerika most people would rather be "Better Dead than Red".  Kollapsniks take on these beliefs I think because they are so thoroughly disgusted with BAU and only see a major revolution as having any chance at actually changing things.

 

A pretty much expected result here, but quite different I think from the general public.  My sense there is they get most of their newz and political beliefs from the TV and from Talk Radio shows.  Every time I jump in a cab the driver has Rush Limbaugh squawking away and I have to sit through that shit for an hour long ride to Anchorage for my latest MRI or CAT Scan.  I gotta start carrying my noise-cancelling Bose Headphones.

About nobody gets their newz at the Barber Shop or Bar anymore, but go back to the days before Radio & TV, this is where people got together to discuss the newz of the day.  I think people were a little more politically savvy back then, although that is just a feeling, no numbers to back that up.

 

This is an EXTREMELY common topic on r/collapse, with quite vehement opinions exressed quite often when the topic comes up.  There is a large cohort of people who think NOBODY should have kids, it's "wrong to bring children into a World in Collapse".  Why bring a new life into the world just to condemn it to a life of pain & suffering?  Also, the clear problems we have with Population Overshoot say we gotta reduce the total population of Homo Saps if we expect the planet to remain Habitable and ourselves not to go Extinct in the Near Term.  However, how is the population of Homo Saps not go Extinct unless SOMEBODY has children?

Here is where the plurality of respondents believe your financial means should determine whether you can have children or not.  That is essentially the viewpoint of the Eugenics believers of the early 20th Century, followers of Margaret Sanger who felt poor people should be Sterilized.  This of course was taken up by the Nazi Party and Adolf Hitller in Germany as well.  Why should reproduction be only for the rich?  How many very successful people came from poverty, raised on rural farms to bootstrap themselves up to wealth and success?  Should their parents not have been allowed to breed them?

Roughly half of the Kollapsniks are Married, but if you add in those who have a Life Partner or many Sexual Partners to this, that is the clear majority.  If you parse out this data by age group though, you will see that this also represents the older demographic.  Younger Kollapsniks are not so often coupled up.  Many reasons for this, often discussed in the Sociological trends discussions Inside the Diner.

Similar to the Marriage question, it is mostly older Kollapsniks who have children.  The number with replacement level or below is the majority, which does match with statistics showing that  Industrialized Nations are shrinking in self-procreated population (although immigration still makes up for that deficit in many if not most of those countries).  You could parse this one out by Income distribution, but I haven't done that as of yet.  I suspect the people who have larger numbers of children also have larger incomes, but that might not be true.

I was surprised that roughly 1/4 of Kollapsniks consider themselves "Optimistic" about the future, considering all the incoming evidence that things will just be going from Bad to Worse over time here.  This attitude is what I labelled as "Doom Lite" a few years back, and IMHO it's the result of Normalcy Bias.  We've always bounced back from crashes before, right?  We came back from the Great Depression bigger and stronger than ever!  After Rome Collapsed it took a few hundred years of Dark Ages, but we got the Reformation and Scientific Revolution!  I personally think "this time is different".  I don't think we're going to rebound, at least not in the forseeable future anyhow.  Perhaps some Plateaus and Dead Cat Bounces along the way down, but this is basically one long downhill slide we are on now.  Apologies to John Michael Greer, but it's not "slow & catabolic".  It's moving along quite rapidly now, and getting faster all the time. So I dropped myself in the "Pessimist" category.

The Nihilist category is a whole other ballgame, and while still relatively small it grows all the time and is quite vocal on Collapse websites as well.  This cohort of people is absolutely mired in Hopelessness and in many cases actually HOPES for the Extinction of Homo Saps, the sooner the better.  Don't bother arguing with these folks, it's a complete waste of time.

Here is a result I REALLY did not expect, and it took me some time looking at the data to figure out why the Diner came out #1 on the Hit Parade of Collapse Websites.  The reason is the algorithm the software uses to determine rankings.  It's not just how many Doomers rank you first, it's how many 2nds, 3rds etc you get from them.  Really low rankings from someone bring your totals down.  So many of these websites cancel each other out, Doomers who read The Burning Platform don't read r/collapse, and vica-versa.  The Diner gets high rankings from its own readership, and middle level rankings from everyone else.  In the totals, it comes out on top! 🙂

DOOMSTEAD DINER.  #1 FOR DOOM ON THE NET!

Unsurprisingly since BY FAR r/collapse has the widest circulation, they turned in the most submissions.  Of course, I do participate there myself and plugged the living shit out of the survey over there, which didn't hurt either.  lol.  TBP was in 2nd for a while, but the cohort of Acaademics from Cassandra's Legacy ended up trouncing them when Ugo put up the survey on his blog also.  The Diner rolled in in 4th place, out of the money. lol.  Significantly, without being listed in the main choices, Steve Ludlum's Blog of Economic Undertow came in 5th with 16 write-in ballots.

This split actually has moved up some, now with 14% of Internet Kollapsniks registering their gender as Female.  Either way though this matches earlier surveys we have done where the number always comes in between 10-15%, regardless of the Collapse Website you look at.  Why this is so isn't certain, and I asked this question in an earlier article on this topic.  It's not like wimmen are scarce on the net overall, you find them all over the place on the Cooking websites and the Homesteading sites as well with Gardening tips and so forth.  They seem to avoid the real heavy duty Doomer websites though.

Another very colorful Doughnut chart here, with Kollapsniks quite widely distributed around the FSoA, and throughout the rest of the World as well.  15% of responses came from non-FSoA citizens living elsewhere in the world.  Some of the other countries and regions represented are:

 

Australasia
Australia
Belgium
Canada
Central America
Egypt
EU
France
Germany
Italy
United Kingdom
New Zealand
Oceania
Spain
Sweden
Turkey
Mongolia

Some folks here identified themselves as coming from a given region such as Oceania rather than a specific country.  Particularly true of people living in the EU.  Regardless, it was a fairly wide distribution from around the Globe.

 

Like the Gender issue, I wrote previously about the Religion issue, specifically how few Muslims particpated in the survey given there are over 1B followers of Islam on the planet.  Many of course do not have internet access as their countries get Bombed Back to the Stone Age by the FSoA.  However, many have migrated over the years to the FSoA and Europe, so you would figure a few more would show up.  Their numbers still hover around 1% though, and are actually below Pantheists, Panentheists and Unitarian-Universalists, all spectacularly tiny religions.

Far as Kollapsniks go, the majority identify themselves as either Atheist or none, as in no religion at all.  I find it hard to imagine how anyone can have no belief system at all, everybody believes something.  Even if you believe you can't believe anything, you believe something. lol.  Christians are the other really large category, no surprise there since Christianity is the major religion of Western Industrialized nations, and they did a pretty good job of converting a lot of Chinese to this religion too.  However, nobody from China listed themselves as from there in the locations question.

This is one of the more astounding results from the survey, since it is so far above the level of education in the population at large. 3/4ths of Kollapsniks have a Bachelors Degree or higher, with 13% at the Doctoral Level. In the general population, less than 1/3rd of people have a Bachelor's Degree, and less than 2% Doctoral level.  Generally speaking, Kollapsniks are very well educated people.  An interesting data parsing here would be to see if attitudes about energy or extinction vary significantly by education level?  I haven't done that depth of analysis yet though so I can't tell you.  It's rather time consuming work, and I'm not sure I'll ever get to it.  Just getting out the basic data is taking me a month of time here.  If anybody else wants to parse the numbers, CONTACT me on the Diner and we can discuss it.

Another fairly colorful chart, since Kollapsniks seem to be quite well distributed across the economic spectrum, with the majority between $20,000-$200,000, the working poor to the high Upper Middle Class in the FSoA. The Survey did pull in 3  1%ers  earning between $500,000-$1,000,000 and 2  0.1%ers with an income >$1,000,000.  Who are these folks?  How about making a TAX DEDUCTABLE Donation to the Sustaining Universal Needs Foundation (a 501c3 nonprofit Charitable Organization) to help us expand our work educating people about Collapse and building Sustainable Communities?  CONTACT me on the Diner if you can help us financially.

Somewhat surprisingly to me ZERO respondents to the survey identified themselves as Homeless.  It's surprising because I know there are several Redditors on r/collapse living and working in some of the more expensive cties like Seattle and San Francisco living in their Stealth Vans.  So these folks either didn't respond to the survey or they don't consider themselves Homeless, their Vans are their homes.  I'm not surprised there are no respondents from people who are so far down now already they are sleeping rough.  They don't generally spend much time on the internet and aren't real concerned with the greater scope of Collapse.  They have their own personal collapse to deal with.

It was brought up Inside the Diner that how much money you have around to pay your monthly bills isn't really a great measure of Net Worth, and that is somewhat true.  However, in order to have months or years of cash around or assets to liquidate, your net worth has to be pretty good, and/or your expenses very low.  I had to manage for 7 months with no income whatsoever when I first became a Cripple.  A combination of low monthly expenses, no debt and a good sized nest egg I put together over the years enabled me to do this.  Here in the FSoA, 60% of people don't even have 1 month of savings to handle emergencies or loss of income.  Kollapsniks do substantially better than this typical percentage, both because they have higher incomes in general than average and because, well they are Preppers & Doomers expecting things to crash any day now. lol.  Part of Prepping Up for Collapse is having a Stash of Cash for SHTF Day and getting out of debt.  Trimming your expenses to the bone and living a low consumption lifestyle also are important aspects of being ready for Collapse to arrive at your doorstep, which it will at some point.  Collapse is…

…Coming Soon to a Neighborhood Near You.

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DD-World-Turmoil

 

Collapse Something or Other …

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Published on the Economic Undertow on December 25, 2018

 

Discuss this article at the Economics Table inside the Diner

 

The Christmas present nobody wants sits under the tree: a worldwide finance crisis along with an establishment that appears to be coming apart at the seams.

The status quo is unraveling from all sides, at the top especially, where managers cannot conceal their panic:

 

 

 

Oops!

“Every banker knows that if he must prove he is worthy of credit, however good might be his arguments, in fact his credit is gone.”

— Walter Bagehot

 

The government marshals its forces of borrowing in order to prop up the lenders as per usual. Yet, the lenders have been propped up for years. The bosses demand lower lending rates even as these same rates are at- or below historical lows. What more can be done and to what end? The rates and props deployed during and after prior crises have contributed to the immediate peril as well as everything that has led up to it. There is no cure to be had in additional doses of the same poison that currently looks to kill us.

By questioning whether lenders are worthy of credit the Secretary sinks his own battleship: “Every banker knows …” well, perhaps not. He inadvertently reveals truths: that lenders are vital but are also vulnerable. Vital in that our economy does not pay its own way, it cannot. The industrial economy is reductive rather than productive: its primary ‘good’ is entropy. Business relies on the continuing increase of bank money to draw future resource capital toward the present. Without the lenders and the credit they provide the modern, industrial economy stalls then comes undone. If our economy could meet its own expenses out of cash flow it would do so. What the Secretary admits without doing so directly is our economy cannot afford itself.

That we cannot afford our economy is its immediate vulnerability. Asymmetries within the lending regime such as maturity mismatches make it fragile. The regime depends on a marginal agent or class of agents that sets conditions for all the others. Keynes notwithstanding, a certain level of borrowing restraint, something short of universal borrowing has little affect on the system as a whole. But, some percentage of economic agents must borrow with a fraction of that borrowing deployed to service and retire existing debts. Small leaks- or water over the top of a dike will not damage it but one small leak too many will wash the dike away. In the same way, a small percentage of non-performing loans or defaults is tolerable to the system, a portion of lender reserves and equity is set aside to resolve these as they appear. Then, there is one default too many for whatever reason … this is disaster! The ‘capital’ structure of the lender is upset; this calls into scrutiny the capitalization of all other lenders that are similarly situated. Uncertainty is rapid and corrosive, given time it widens into a self-amplifying spiral of insolvency. This is what occurred in 1929 and 2008 and what looks to be underway right this minute.

Compounding the problem, the marginal borrower is impossible to identify or for immediate institutional convenience is disregarded. The tiny leak with the potential to destroy the dike can be one of any (very large) number. Globalization has rendered the marginal agent opaque; official denial and central bank happy talk permits known problems to fester. The marginal borrower can be an individual or a firm, or a class like Chinese peer-to-peer lenders, Italian footwear manufacturers or Spanish residential real estate speculators and the banks that supply these with funds. Eventually, all of them together become marginal. Structured finance operates outside the reach of policy makers at the same time are tightly bound to all the others by way of swaps, corresponding- and exchange lenders, counterparty agreements, derivatives-based hedges and money markets. Like a flood, marginality propagates outward, with the ‘new’ marginal borrowers becoming major banks, dark money pools, bond- and derivatives market makers, national governments and foreign exchange. In any event, agents cannot be compelled to borrow and in a crisis refuse to do so. Insolvent, zombie-like walking dead firms which continue to borrow/lend in the aggregate are lethal to the regime: they can only offer the (fraudulent) appearance of a cure while delaying the inevitable reckoning. Accounts cannot be overdrawn indefinitely, it is impossible to borrow out of debt. “If something cannot go on forever, it will stop,” says economist Herbert Stein. No amount of marginal borrowers can rescue a system that is foundationally bankrupt.

… this is after hundreds of trillion$ have been borrowed around the world already. The simple fact of the trillions suggests the managers are inept and perhaps insane. Our debts have grown beyond human scale, even the billionaires all together cannot hope to retire them, in fact their borrowings have contributed significantly to the total. Along with their managers, these stupendous debts fade to irrelevance in the practical sense; they can never be repaid. They are empty claims against resources that have long since been converted into useless waste. Machines that are dependent upon credit for their very existence cannot repay, certainly not labor which is feeble; which is otherwise depreciated, subordinated and oversupplied.

This is all part of the current crisis, it may indeed be its entirety. Whether the markets are repricing (in)competence, (in)solvency, systemic bankruptcy or perhaps all of the above; it is too soon to tell.

Figure 1: What is our over-extracted world worth? The underlying problem is resource stripping and its consequences. If that is being priced in right now we are in big trouble. Chart by TFC Charts (click on for big). The current crisis could not be predicted as was the oil price plunge in 2014, but it was inevitable nevertheless. Our economy requires cheap oil to run but the cheaper oil is exhausted, what remains is unaffordable. Low cost credit has offered the (fraudulent) appearance of a cure … but it has only delayed the inevitable reckoning.

A few years ago, the oil price that triggered crises was over $100 per barrel. We have been creeping toward a crisis for the past several months at $80 per barrel. Time and waste leave us less wealthy than we pretend to be …

Figure 2: Compare the likely crisis price suggested a few months ago. We clearly cannot afford $75 oil, higher prices are out of reach. At the same time, the drillers cannot stay in business selling their product below cost. What is common = access to credit which turns out to be the means by which resources are allocated. The customers are broke.

“Take an online survey and answer all your own questions!”

2019 Collapse Survey Results: The 500 – Energy & Technology

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Published on the Doomstead Diner on January 6, 2018

 

" Remember this day men, for it will be yours for all time."

Discuss this article at the Survey Table inside the Diner

 

The Charge of the Light Brigade

I
Half a league, half a league,
Half a league onward,
All in the valley of Death
   Rode the six hundred.
“Forward, the Light Brigade!
Charge for the guns!” he said.
Into the valley of Death
   Rode the six hundred.
 
II
“Forward, the Light Brigade!”
Was there a man dismayed?
Not though the soldier knew
   Someone had blundered.
   Theirs not to make reply,
   Theirs not to reason why,
   Theirs but to do and die.
   Into the valley of Death
   Rode the six hundred.
 
III
Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon in front of them
   Volleyed and thundered;
Stormed at with shot and shell,
Boldly they rode and well,
Into the jaws of Death,
Into the mouth of hell
   Rode the six hundred.
 
Image result for charge of the light brigade
 
IV
Flashed all their sabres bare,
Flashed as they turned in air
Sabring the gunners there,
Charging an army, while
   All the world wondered.
Plunged in the battery-smoke
Right through the line they broke;
Cossack and Russian
Reeled from the sabre stroke
   Shattered and sundered.
Then they rode back, but not
   Not the six hundred.
 
V
Cannon to right of them,
Cannon to left of them,
Cannon behind them
   Volleyed and thundered;
Stormed at with shot and shell,
While horse and hero fell.
They that had fought so well
Came through the jaws of Death,
Back from the mouth of hell,
All that was left of them,
   Left of six hundred.
 
VI
When can their glory fade?
O the wild charge they made!
   All the world wondered.
Honour the charge they made!
Honour the Light Brigade,
   Noble six hundred!
 
 

 

 

 

 

Notes from RE:

1- Although the title says 500, I actually took this snapshot of the Stats when the numbers were between 430-435.  They are now at 535 as I publish this article.  I chose 500 because it sounds good and it's right between the 300 of Thermopylae and the 600 of the Light Brigade.  Percentages haven't changed much with the additional submissions since the snapshot was taken.  We will no doubt add quite a few more respondents with this article since I am leaving the survey open for the time being.  460 respondents marked the point at which the survey gained a 99% Confidence Level with a 6% Confidence Interval for a population size of 100,000, but more is always better when it comes to surveys.

Respondents who added their email addys will get a pdf of the survey results right around 500, depending when I take the snapshot.  More in depth analysis can be done with the spreadsheet, you can parse the numbers with that.  Contact me if you are interested in doing a more detailed numerical analysis and have verifiable background with which to do it.

If you use the results of this survey in any academic papers or documents, please reference the Doomstead Diner as the source in your footnotes.  Also please inform me through the Contact Page on the Diner if you are going to use the survey or its charts and graphs in this way, or on your blogs if you have one.

No parts of this study may be used on commercial websites that use Advertising or sell Merchandise such as the Author's books, or which have Paywalls without the express consent of the Doomstead Diner and the Sustaining Universal Needs Foundation.  None of the charts and graphs may be altered in any way or the copyright and logos removed from those charts.

The Survey remains OPEN at this time.  Responses keep dribbling in and I don't want to leave anyone out of the final Tally.

2-  Most of the questions don't tally to the full 430 or so when I took the snapshot.  This because all respondents don't answer all questions.

3- Statistical Significance:  This is always a bone of contention with any survey.  How significant is it really?  How big is the population you are surveying?

It's tough to estimate exactly how many people were surveyed here across all the websites, but I'm putting the Outer Limit at 100,000.  r/collapse has the largest circulaton with almost 90,000 subscribers, but many of them no longer participate or read the sub anymore.  Also unlikely that in 2 weeks all the currently active redditors saw the links to the survey.  All the rest of the blogs and forums are much smaller, so 100,000 seems like a good outer limit here.

At this level of population, the Survey comes in with a 99% Confidence Level and a 6% Confidence Interval, IOW it's very significant for this size population.  It's likely quite accurate in its numbers.  Caculations done with the Survey Calculator on SurveySystems.com.

4- Question Structure Complaints:  Once again with all surveys, complaints come in with the way the questions are structured and what the answer choices are.  In this case I tried to give as many places for a free form write in response as possible.  Many respondents took advantage of this and I will publish their responses in follow up articles or Inside the Diner in the Surveys thread.

5- "Americentric" Complaints:  Specific to this survey, several complaints came in that it was "Americentric", which really is not true.  There are a few questions specific to the Amerikan Political Sewer, but most of the questions are applicable to Kollapsniks who live anywhere at all.

 

Thanks to all the Kollapsniks from all websites who dropped in their 2 cents on this survey.  Special thanks to the following 7 websites which contributed the bulk of the opinions (sites with >5 Repsondents):

 

#1- Reddit r/collapse with 168 Submissions

#2- Cassandra's Legacy with 121 Submissions

#3- The Burning Platform with 98 Submissions

#4- The Doomstead Diner with 68 Submissions

#5-  Economic Undertow with 16 Submissions

#6- Our Finite World with 13 Submissions

#7- Truthdig with 7 Submissions

 

Each of these websites has a somewhat different readerhship, I'll make some general obserations here from my time participating on all of these websites  as a (rather prolific, lol) commenter and TROLL. Before Admining my own site, I was a first class annoying troll in the commentariat of NUMEROUS websites, I can't even count them all anymore.  I was BANNED from most of them. lol.

 

#1- r/collapse: Like the rest of Reddit, r/collapse is dominated by social media freak Millenials.  Their education and knowledge of the problems we face is very diverse.  Some are well read up, others are fucking clueless idiots.  Their numbers are HUGE, dwarfing any of the single collapse websites.  Their Political viewpoints vary from the far right to the far left, leaning more toward the left.

#2- Cassandra's Legacy:  Prof. Ugo Bardi's Blog.  He teaches Physical Chemistry at the Univeristy of Firenza in Italy.   Ugo is a member of the Club of Rome and participated in the original Limits to Growth study done in the 1970s.  The website is LOADED with Academics with Ph.Ds.  It's one of the reasons we have such a high education level recorded in this survey.  Ugo and I collaborated on many video discussions of Collapse Issues which can be found on the Diner YouTube Channel.

#3- The Burning Platform: Run by Jim Quinn, a CPA who handles the books at the Wharton Biz Skule in the Ivy League.  A Baby Boomer who denies he is a Baby Boomer, for whom the 4th Turning by Strauss & Howe is the Bible of Collapse.  Very Right-Wing/Libertarian leaning website, with quite a vocal commentariat.  I participated on that site for a couple of years and wrote numerous contrarian articles there.  It was very entertaining. lol.

#4- The Doomstead Diner: My Doom Website, established in 2012 by myself and my co-Admin Surly and our Code Jockey tech designer Peter.  The #1 Go-To Website on the net for Collapse Newz.  Generally Left leaning politically, but we do have a few contrarian Libertarians who chip in their 2 cents as well.  A very contentious commentariat, not a place for the meek.  Don your Fireproof BVDs before you sign in. lol.

#5- Economic Undertow: Run by Steve Ludlum, aka Steve from Virginia.  An economic technical site with a very different from mainstream analysis you can get anywhere else, and usually right on the mark.  Steve also collaborated with me on many videos.  A relatively apolitical website.

#6- Our Finite World:  Run by Gail Tverberg, a former professional Actuary who does many charts and graphs to illustrate her POV on the energy problems we face.  OFW has become increasingly Doomerish over the years, although the site has little political spin at all, just some very vehement Nihilists.  Gail also collaborated with me on numerous discussions and videos.  No discernible Political Spin to this website.

#7- Truthdig:  Chris Hedges website.  Chris is a Pulitzer Prize winning journalist and an unabshed Socialist with a Capital S.  He himself does have a net worth in the $Millions$ though. lol.  He's a fabulous speaker and does great interviews as well.

 

Now, on to the charts from the survey.  For today, we look at the Energy & Technology Questions.  I'll make a few brief comments beneath each chart.   For further analysis and discussion, visit the Survey Table inside the Diner.

 

Survey still OPEN

Survey now @ 534 Submissions

 

I found it pretty hard to believe that roughly 1/4 of Kollapsniks characterize their attitude as "Optimistic", given all the evidence coming in here nowadays.  However, hope springs eternal even amongst Doomers.  I voted in the Pessimist category.  The Nihilists are still a fairly small but very vocal community, led by such pundits as Dr. McStinksion from Nature Bats Last.

The plurality of Kollapsniks think that Renewables can provide enough energy to maintain the technological lifestyle, at least for a smaller population of Homo Saps anyhow.  I fall into the Pipedream category, I don't think most of these techno-gimmick solutions will work for any more than a few decades at best.

Here most Kollapsniks feel we should put the bulk of our resources into developing Solar Photovolataics.  An oversight here, I didn't include Solar Thermal (stuff like Stirling Engines) which might have a longer lifespan overall than photovoltaics.  I'm down there at the low end favoring putting our resources toward biomass and animal power.  It's going to take quite some time to breed up a population of horses again sufficient for even a reduced Homo Sap footprint on the planet.  Developing biomass is good for the environment also and doesn't require complex factories or machinery to use.

Given the disasters of 3 Mile Island, Chernobyl and Fukushima, it's hard for me to understand how anyone can be in favor of Nuclear Energy.  And those disasters (along with smaller ones at reactors you don't hear about) happened during GOOD TIMES, when we have some resources to throw at the problem and try to contain it.  The spent fuel waste continues to pile up with no solution to that in sight.  Thorium Reactors and Fusion Power are both Pipedreams of the technogimmick Futurologists, they don't exist in practical working form anywhere.  It's time to give up on this Planet Killing system and decommision the plants while there is still time.

This one truly astounds me.  Even today, more than 1/5th of Kollapsniks buy into the Star Trek Futurology Mythology and think we will leave this planet to set up colonies on Mars and Beyond.  We can't even set up a self-sustaining colony in Antarctica, and it has air, water and suitable gravity for Homo Saps!  The "Space Station" we have up is decades old and is just a bunch of glorified RVs hooked together in space.  It's no 2001 Big Wheel in the Sky.  We don't have a propulsion system that is going to drive us through Interstellar Space and then be able also to land on and take off from any planets we migt find out there.  Yet this whole meme continues to be sold by dingbats like Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos, who waste $Billions$ in debt money and Wall Street keeps funding them!  It's just preposterous and the stuff of childhood fantasies.  Grow UP people!  The Human Race was born on this planet and it will die here at some indeterminate point in the future.  Live with it.

These questions were covered in The Human Extinction Survey, which we ran a couple of years ago here on the Diner.  However, attitudes do change as time goes by and Collapse progresses, so I included a few questions on the future of Homo Sap and when we might go Extinct in this survey as well.  It's always a popular topic in the commentariat of Collapse websites.

In this particular iteration of the question we do have 2 complete Fanatics who think the entire population of Homo Sap will be DEAD by next year.  These are the acolytes and True Believers of Dr. McStinksion on Nature Bats Last.  Sorry folks, the only way you get 100% Dead People by next year is if the Earth collides with a Planet Killer Asteroid.  You need 100% for Extinction, 99.99% just won't do here.  Even full on Thermonuclear War couldn't do it, nor could a Supervolcanic Eruption.

Only slightly more rational is the cohort that thinks we'll have Extinction by 2030, there were 7 of those responding to the survey.  Again, you just can't get an extinction that fast, there will still be some habitable neighborhoods even under the worst projections for climate change by 2030.

2050 to 2100 starts to get more rational, but in neither case will I be alive that long, so after about 2040 (really, if I make it to 2025 that will be miraculous) it's irrelevant to me when Extinction arrives.  Not so for some younger and healthier Diners of course.  In the meantime though while you are waiting for the last Homo Sap on Planet Earth to expire, WTF do you DO with yourself?  Are you going to just throw up your hands and give up?  Pull your own plug and commit Seppuku?  What?

I put in my vote for In the Year 2525, because that was what was prophesied by Zager & Evans in 1968, 50 years ago.

This is one of my favorite Collapse Questions, because my own opinion on this has changed over the years of observing and writing about Collapse.

When I first began in 2007 on the Peak Oil Forum, my opinion was we could stabilize at a 19th Century level of technology, with stuff like Steam Engines and Railroads.  At the end of my years there but before I launched the Doomstead Diner with my Comrades Peter & Surly I was back to the 18th Century, prior to the invention of the Steam Engine.

My estimates have continued to retreat in time however, to the point now I don't think anything is truly sustainable beyond Stone Age Technology.  There is only a small cohort of submitters who agree with me on this estimate, 2% or 9 submitters in total.  I have numerous reasons why I have come to this conclusion, too numerous and detailed to expand on here.  If you are curious to discuss it, drop in at the Survey Table inside the Diner and I'll be happy to explain the rationale for this.

Stone Age Tech really isn't so bad though, when you consider what Stone Age people were able to accomplish and how long they lasted before the discovery of Metallurgy and Ceramics and before intensive Agriculture began for them in their neighborhoods.  The Polynesians who explored the breadth of the biggest Ocean of them all, the Pacific, were Stone Age People.

Image result for hokulea

Don't you wish you were the Navigator on that first Cat-Rigged Sailing Canoe that made it to the Big Island of Hawaii when it was still pristine and unspoiled?  When I shut the eyes of my crippled body, that is where I am, on the deck of that boat with Mauna Loa off in the distance.

This is another of those stats that is incomprehensible to me if you at are at all familiar with the history of the growth of Homo Sap population and when it started to max out in some neighborhoods.  In Europe at the time of the Plagues, the population leveled off with a Global Population estimated at around 600M in that era.

Image result for global population table

After that of course, the New World was discovered, Native Inhabitants of that location systematically exterminated and then came the discovery of Fossil Fuels and how to apply them to Agriculture with Industrial Farming apparatus, Fertilizers and Pesticides, rapidly increasing the doubling rate for the Homo Sap population inhabing the Earth.  However, how much of that population is truly sustainable once the FFs have run out, not to mention the depletion of topsoil and aquifers and the pollution left behind here?  If that number was 1B even with all the Best Practices Permie techniques and hydroponics and aquaculture I would be flabberghasted.  I lowballed my estimate at 10M to 100M.  Maybe more than that, but I expect an Undershoot to persist for quite some time in the aftermath of the Collapse of Industrial Civilization.

One of my favorite categories from this survey, because it is so far over the top.  The typical distribution of education levels in the FSoA comes up with around 30% with a Bachelor's degree or above, and around 2% with Doctoral level education sheepskins.

Image result for educational attainment in the us

Doomers however come in with about 3/4s (73%) of them with a Bachelor's degree or better, and an astounding 13% with the coveted "Dr." preceeding their name and letting everyone know you are an important and smart guy who gets paid a lot of money to sneer at nurses and any other staff below him on the hospital hierarchy list.  I'm not a big fan of Credentialism in general, and frankly I haven't found "Dr."s to be any smarter than the population at large, and often enough dumber.  However, this is an amazing statistic, demonstrating that in general Doomers are much better educated than the population at large.  Does that make them any more prescient?  Only time will tell on that score, but it does lend gravitas to the survey.

One of the more common critiques you get if you are a Doomer aware of the Climate issues with increasing CO2 levels is if you use an Internal Combustion Engine car for your transportation.  Cries of HYPOCRISY are heard throughout the Commentariat of the Blogosphere!  Well, the stats show that said doomers are in fact "hypocrites" in this regard, with 2/3rds of them using carz as their primary mode of transportation.  Does this in REALITY make them hypocrites?  IMHO, no it does not.

The fact of the matter is if you live inside Industrial Civilization in most places besides a few Big Shities with decent Public Transit systems, you simply can't get along or make a living for yourself without driving a car.  Even Public Transit though burns a shit load of fossil fuels, ever consider how much energy it takes to keep all those subway trains running in NYC 24/7/365?  At 3 AM sometimes I would get on the No. 7 Flushing Line and there would be NOBODY else in the train car, one of maybe 7-10 of these huge hunks of metal in the whole train.  How efficient a use of energy is that?

People who drive Teslas, Volts and other EVs consider themselves "Green", but of course they also use electricity which is generally produced by burning fossil fuels.  The amount of energy contributed to this so far by Solar PV is marginal right now.   Besides that, the manufacture of photovoltaic cells takes energy and is the source of quite a bit of mining pollution as well, so you can cross yourself off the list of Greenies if you are driving one of these overpriced hunks of metal, glass & plastic around.

You pretty much have to work down to the level of the Amish with a horse drawn carriage or use a bicycle all the time to be anywhere near "Green", and this just isn't practical for most people.  Doomer or not, aware of Climate problems or not, we're mostly going to continue driving carz until we just can't anymore.  How far off that day is remains an open question of course.

Concommitant with owning a car and using it for your transit needs is how many miles do you actually DRIVE that car every week?  There's quite the range here as well amongst Kollapsniks, from the very low end of <10 miles/week (93 respondents/25%) to the high end of >1000 (3 respondents/1%).

For the low end folks, I suspect they are retired/crippled folks like me who don't have to commute to work anymore.  Even if you only live a couple of miles from your workplace, you're going to drive more than 10 miles/week.  Add in those trips to the Food Superstore to pick up a bottle of milk you forgot on the way home or a six-pack of Sam Adams Boston Lager, you're easily over 20 miles for the week, and that's just the weekdays.  On the weekends you gotta chauffer the kids around to their various activities and play dates.

For the high end folks clocking in at over 1000 miles/week, if that is just for commuting purposes I feel truly sorry for these folks.  5 days/week they are stuck in their car for two 100 mile journeys across the Interstate and through traffic, taking a likely minimum of 2 hours each way.  There's a great way to spend your time walking the earth! (or in this case, sitting & periodically rolling).  Some might also be professional drivers though, like taxi drivers or truck drivers.  When I was trucking, an average week would see me on the road for around 2500-3000 miles.

Needless to say, all this driving burns a LOT of Fossil Fuels, but at the moment it is pretty much unavoidable, for most people living inside Industrial Civilization.

Finishing off with the scurrying about Industrialized Homo Saps do each year is the issue of plane travel, another one which leaves you wide open to Hypocrisy criticisms if you are a self-proclaimed Greeny.  Here the critics have more validity, since about nobody really NEEDS to fly around in jets all over the world, even to do bizness.  There is little you cannot do via Teleconferencing these days, but even Dr. McStinksion flies across the globe to give lectures to his acolytes and let them know they are all hopelessly DOOMED.

In our survey, the plurality of Kollapsniks don't fly at all, at 38% (141 Respondents).  Another 44% only fly once or twice a year, I fit in that category weighing in for an average of once a year.  Some years I don't fly at all, other years, two plane trips but overall it's about once a year.

Then you have the cohort of Jet Setters getting molested by the TSA Goons 3-6 times a year.  For the most part in my Guesstimation, these are the upper middle class and moderately rich people who take several vacations every year to Snorkel in places like the Virgin Islands and to Ski the Deep Powder in the Rockies.  These people are now starting to burn some serious amounts of Jet Fuel.  Finally you have your filthy rich people who are flying anywhere from 7 and up times a year, who knows maybe even in Private Jets.  We have a couple of respondents in that category here, more on that next week when I chart out some of the demographics of Kollapsniks.  If you just look at the folks from 7 & Up flights though,  they burn more fuel than the whole cohort of people flying once a year or less!  One rich fuck can put a shit load of carbon into the atmosphere every year, no problem.  It's chump change for these folks!

Can we/will we stop the flying around before TEOTWAWKI arrives?  Also unlikely.  It's not quite as built in to the culture or as necessary as the driving is, but it's close especially for people at the upper end who have high maintenance lifestyles and have come to expect this freedom of travel to far flung places.  I personally do not feel guilty when I board a jet plane to haul my crippled ass down to the Lower 48.  That's just how it goes in the waning days of Industrial Civilization.  Everybody Knows.

See you again next week here on the Doomstead Diner for more fun Stats about Kollapniks.  Coming Soon to a Laptop Near You.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Responding to Collapse, Part 4: getting out of the city

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Published on The Easiest Person to Fool November 21, 2018

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Responding to Collapse, Part 4: getting out of the city

 
A cold and windy day on Lake Huron

In my last post I talked about the economic contraction that is being caused by declining surplus energy and the collapse which that contraction, combined with the effects of climate change (covered in the post before that), is likely to cause.

My conclusion was that we will have a good bit of adapting to do and it will be much easier to do in rural areas than in the cities. So I advised that, if you currently live in a city, you should be considering a move to the country. But I didn't go into much detail about this moving and adapting and now I intend to remedy that. I should give credit in advance to my friend Don Hayward for sharing with me his thoughts on the subject, and taking part in many good conversations that have allowed me to clarify my own thoughts. Similar credit is due to "Joe", from the comments section of this blog.

It will no doubt be obvious to my readers that I am figuring this out as I go along. Whether I've got it right is, of course, open to discussion. I also reserve the right to change my mind as I learn more.

In a post some months ago I expressed the opinion that the reduction in our impact on the planet following a major financial crash would be mainly a matter of drastically reduced levels of consumption, particularly in the developed world, and that there would not be a major reduction in population at that point. After considerable reflection, I have to say that especially in large cities, the combination of climate change and supply chain interruption following a global financial crash will lead to greater loss of life than I had previously thought. Of course it is hard to predict, but I think this will lead to an actual reduction in population, perhaps by a few billion people.

I still believe that planetary resources will still be sufficient to fuel some sort of recovery as we rebuild the virtual organizational systems lost in the financial crash on a smaller, more local scale. But if we don't learn to live sustainably, that recovery will see us plowing through the remaining resources and there will be another crash, an agricultural one, mainly effecting the more populous areas and reducing the population to a few hundred million. One thing I am pretty sure of is that the predictions of a world population of 9 to 10 billion later this century are not going to pan out.

I am still expecting a slow and irregular collapse. Even without the localized catastrophes that will no doubt happen, the contracting economy will lead to a slow crumbling of industrial civilization.

But now let's return to our scheduled programming, so to speak. The question for today is what sort of adapting am I talking about and why do I think it will be easier in well chosen rural areas?

For most people the hardest thing about collapse is facing up to the end of progress. Adapting to this big change in how we think about the world, and our lives in it, is challenging. But it can be done, and most of the effort takes place inside your head. So it doesn't much matter where you are for that part of the process. It does help if you have a supportive family and community around you, though of course that is true of anything you try to do.

But once you've decided that life is still worth living, you're faced with the many practical issues of staying alive in a collapsing world.

For most of us, staying alive means taking part in the economy—having a job or collecting a pension or the proceeds of investments, so as to have the money needed to procure the necessities of life. Since the economy is contracting fewer jobs are available and many people are unemployed, or "under employed" at best. Pension and investments are under some stress but not doing so badly, though a financial crash would certainly change that.

At the same time, in many locales, housing is getting more expensive and the ranks of the homeless are swelling with the unemployed and even the working poor, many of whom are living out of their vehicles.

That contracting economy also means that less money is being spent on maintaining infrastructure, which is gradually decaying as time passes. And in an effort to keep the economy growing, regulations intended to protect the environment are being repealed and efforts to cut back on the release of greenhouse gases and reduce climate change are being abandoned.

This means that what were once minor inconveniences will grow into catastrophes. Here is a brief and probably not complete list of such events:

  • The degradation of the natural environment due the load placed on it by the human race, mainly manifesting as climate change, ocean acidification and various other pollution related problems, as well as degradation of the environment due to resource use and habitat destruction.
  • Failures of the physical built human environment, mainly infrastructure— water supplies, the power grid, and transportation and communication infrastructure.
  • Failures of the virtual built human environment—economic contraction, financial crashes, failure of the credit systems which make commercial enterprises possible and have largely replaced cash for individuals, breakdown of governments as economic contraction starves them of financial resources, degradation of the fabric of our communities, social unrest, and war.
  • In some sense food is at the intersection of our natural, built and virtual environments, and as such, we can expect there to be problems in production, processing and distribution of food. These will lead to famines in many cases.
  • It also seems likely that there will be an increase in severe epidemics. I am not as well informed as I'd like to be about this, but it seems that hunger, poor sanitation and crowding in slums and refugee camps will be contributing factors.

So, we are going to find ourselves poorer and adapting to getting by with less. Less energy, less stuff and less stimulation, to borrow a phrase from John Michael Greer. This will mean a significant reduction in our level of comfort and convenience but given the high level of consumption in the developed world, there is quite a bit of room for this sort of adaptation. I think there is good reason to believe that many of us will survive, find a livelihood and maintain a sense of self worth even with drastically reduced consumption of energy and material goods.

When it comes right down to it, the bare necessities are energy, food and water. All three are going to be in short supply as collapse progresses over the next few decades, and those shortages will frequently lead to crises. The term "necessities" implies you can't adapt to such shortages, at least not in the long term. All you can do is try to be where they are less severe.

Cities rely on supplies shipped in from other locations. Before fossil fuels, the largest cities had populations of one million or a little more, and that only in ideal circumstances where water transportation made it possible to bring food in from a large enough surrounding area to feed that many people. Cities today rely on complex infrastructure powered by fossil fuels to supply their inhabitants. They will be in deep trouble as collapse progresses.

On the other hand there are many rural locations where:

  • adequate energy can be had locally in the form of firewood, which can be cut by hand if necessary
  • potable water can be accessed from already existing wells that can be converted to hand or wind driven pumps, or surface water that can be used with fairly simple filtration or treatment
  • sufficient food for the local population can be grown on existing farmland within walking distance of town, without fossil fuel powered machinery
  • the population is small enough that organizing such alternate arrangements will not be impossibly difficult to do when it becomes necessary.

This is the essence of why I think we will have a better time adapting to collapse in rural areas. Yes, it will require some degree of advance preparation and a willingness to accept a less affluent lifestyle, but it is all quite doable. As always, what I am recommending here as a viable response to collapse will only work if relatively few people follow my advice. But somehow, I don't think that will be a problem.

The standard trope in discussions of collapse and in collapse fiction is that the most extreme sort of catastrophe happens very quickly, widely and early in the process of collapse. Things break down pretty much completely over a period of days, and people are left thirsty, hungry and freezing in the dark. The sort of perfect storm it would require to have all this happen at once all across even one city, much less a whole country or continent is pretty unlikely in my opinion, though it does make for exciting stories.

After this fast and drastic collapse it is assumed that there will be roving hordes of hungry people leaving the cities to engage in looting and other violence in the countryside, leaving a trail of destruction behind them. But we should bear in mind that, even in the unlikely event of such a collapse, people can't walk far on empty stomachs, especially when they aren't used to walking much at all. Thirst and hunger are debilitating and in a fast collapse most people, caught unawares and unprepared, would not think to head out until they were already in pretty desperate shape. If this really were to happen, what you would end up with is piles of corpses along the sides of the roads, gradually thinning out as you get farther out of the city.

But of course, that is not the way I see it happening at all. Long before things have broken down completely, economic contraction will leave fewer and fewer people with jobs to keep them in the city. At the same time, infrastructure and supply chain failures will become more frequent and more lengthy, providing the nudge that people need to get them moving. First there will first be a trickle of people leaving the cities, mainly those who left the country to find jobs in the city in the recent past. Later on, there will be a wave of refugees leaving the cities following each new disaster.

While governments still have the wherewithall to do so, many of these people will end up in refugee camps. But as economic contraction eventually starves governments to the point where they simply don't have resources to do much of anything, those camps will stop being serviced and people will be left to their own devices, both in the cities and in the camps. And by the time things have broken down completely, there will only be a few people left in the cities.

The actual facts about how people respond to disasters paints a very different picture from what most people expect. There is a deep human need to come together in crises to take care of each other. And contrary to the horrific picture of typical reactions painted by the "disaster mythology" (especially points 2, 3 and 4 in that article), in fact communities often do come together to help themselves in the most extraordinarily positive ways. This works best in communities where people already know each other and where things haven't broken down to the point where there are hostile factions that are basically at war. And of course, it requires at least a minimum of the resources needed to keep people alive (energy, food, water). These resources are far more likely to be available outside the cities.

It has also been suggested, that when the financial sector crashes, the commercial sector must fall apart too for lack of working credit arrangements, and with catastrophic results. I don't agree—even a worldwide financial collapse will hit some areas harder than others and will proceed, as I have said before, unevenly, unsteadily and unequally.p>

From personal experience in agriculture and the power industry I would predict that the people at the workface in critical industries will simply refuse to set down their tools when the results would be disastrous, just because banks are no longer doing their part. Alternate credit arrangements will be set up, involving handshakes, records kept on paper and promises to straighten it all out after the dust settles, rather than let people freeze and starve in the dark if there is any alternative at all.

Make no mistake, I don't mean to suggest that "Business as Usual" can continue on after a major financial collapse using jerry rigged credit arrangements. But there is a vast distance between BAU in all its glory and complete collapse where everything quits working. There is a lot of inertia in the systems which we most need to keep working: the power grid, industrial agriculture, the various systems by which fuels, especially diesel fuel, are distributed, and transportation and communication. This sort of thing will mitigate to a degree situations that would otherwise be thoroughly catastrophic.

So, anyway, you're going to move to the country, to position yourself where surviving collapse is the more doable.

The first thing to decide is when you should make this move. Many people, who live in sheltered circumstances, don't realize that collapse has already been happening for quite a while and that parts of many cities are already nicely along their way in the process of collapse. And it appears that we are in for another financial crash that will make things much worse. You want to leave well before your personal resources have become so depleted that you can't make the move successfully.

So this is more urgent than you might think. Still, I'm not suggesting you leave in a panic today. But do start preparing right away, and leave as soon as you can do so in an orderly fashion with a workable destination already arranged. You don't want to end up in one of those camps. Nor do you want to end up as one of a large wave of refugees arriving in a rural community, especially if that community is unprepared for you arrival, as will likely be the case.

This is more than just a matter of getting out of the cities before things get really miserable there. It's going to take some time to get set up where you are going and to become integrated into your new community. At the moment, people are still leaving small rural towns to find work in the city, but the day will come when that flow reverses. You want to be seen as a relatively old hand in your small town when that happens.

One of the challenges of the slow and uneven collapse that I am predicting, and which has indeed been going on for several decades now, is that there is never going to be a day when you can say at bedtime, "yep, industrial civilization collapsed today." Looking back years later it will be more obvious that collapse has been happening, but still hard to pin down a specific date for when it happened, even in any one location.

If you are at ground zero for one of those catastrophes I listed, there will usually be somewhere else where things are better and you can go as a refugee. But waiting to be a refugee, or worse yet a victim of catastrophe, is exactly what I recommend you don't do. As I have said before, the only real choice you have is to be part of the influx of refugees or to be among of those who are welcoming that influx. I would say that the latter role is very much preferable. A timely move, before things get serious, can put you on the right side of things.

But where to go? In the second post in this series I identified a number of criteria for selecting a new location, based on avoiding the worst effects of climate change:

  • well above sea level
  • not at the top of a bluff overlooking the sea that is being gradually eroded away
  • not situated so as to take the full brunt of tropical storms
  • not in the floodplain of a river
  • not in a desert or semi-desert that relies on water from fossil aquifers that are being depleted faster than they are replenished or rivers fed by melt water from disappearing glaciers
  • not subject to hot season temperatures or heat waves that are not survivable if the power goes out or you can't afford air conditioning
  • receiving enough rain to allow for agriculture largely without irrigation
  • with a growing season and soil that will support agriculture

Now based on the need to get out of the city and find a location where adapting to post-industrial collapse conditions will be easier, we can add a few more criteria:

  • far enough from the city to avoid the worst of what's going to happen there and so that the waves of refugees will be largely spent and small in number when they arrive at your location, and to be isolated from epidemics as well
  • in a small town (a few hundred to a few thousand people) or on a farm near such a town
  • where the surrounding agricultural area can support the local population using low tech, sustainable agricultural methods
  • where there is still some standing timber, mainly for firewood, but also for all the many other things that can be done with wood
  • where the ground water or surface water is potable or can be made that way with simple filtration
  • where you have connections in the community, or where you can make those connections with some work hard
  • where you can initially earn a living or set up to live off your savings/investments/pension

There are a few things that such a community needs to be prepared to do and you should work toward being in a position to encourage that preparation. At some point the trucks are going to stop running. You'll need to get by on local resources.

  • Many small towns have a water treatment plant that relies on chemicals that are shipped in on a "just in time" basis. A stockpile of those chemicals and/or a plan for moving to an alternate source of potable water will be critical.
  • You will need a plan to feed the populace when the grocery store shelves are empty, using local farm products, so that people don't panic and start helping themselves to, and in the process destroying, the stock and crops on local farms.
  • It will only be a matter of time until your connection to the power grid fails. Firewood, wood burning stoves, lanterns and so forth will be in short supply and you'll want to be prepared.
  • While perhaps not quite so urgent, some thought should be given to how welcome refugees. This is on humanitarian grounds, if nothing else. A community that is willing to drive refugees away at gun point, will eventually be willing to treat its own member just as harshly. Your remote location should ensure you won't be overrun, that a manageable number of refugees show up. Your aim should be to treat these folks as well as you treat yourselves and, without abusing them, to turn them into a resource rather than a burden. You will be switching over to a lifestyle where people are needed to replace automation, so that shouldn't be too hard.

It would be excellent if the existing authorities were aware of what's coming and had plans to deal with it, but I should think that is pretty unlikely in most small towns. Better to get to know some of the locals, particularly farmers, well enough to be able to get together with them and organize what's needed when the time comes. If you set a good enough example, others will follow.

More on that, and other practical considerations, next time.

 

Knarf plays the Doomer Blues

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Doomstead Diner Daily February 20The Diner Daily i [...]

Quote from: Surly1 on February 19, 2019, 10:34:50 [...]

February 20, 2019QuoteReality Now delivers the lat [...]

Quote from: K-Dog on February 15, 2019, 08:01:48 P [...]

Environmental campaigners say Samir Flores Soberan [...]

The world of doom is having very lean pickens thes [...]

I was there in '66 when the old man worked at [...]

Too bad. I was in Boston exactly once, in 1985, wh [...]

Video capturing the heartbreaking moment when a tw [...]

You're probably right. And so is JHK. LOL. [...]

Quote from: Eddie on January 21, 2019, 09:28:37 AM [...]

The Iditarod, "The Last Great Race on Earth [...]

Quote from: Eddie on February 06, 2019, 08:06:11 A [...]

Good. Now treat him decently, even though he disag [...]

http://www.youtube.com/v/38AYeNGjqg0In the Sp... [...]

Print on Card Stock or better still Glossy Photo P [...]

Alternate Perspectives

  • Two Ice Floes
  • Jumping Jack Flash
  • From Filmers to Farmers

But We Need the Eggs Re-posted from Epsilon Theory   Ben Hunt of Epsilon Theory is one of those rare [...]

About That Liberal Media.... By Cognitive Dissonance   Charts and Info from Business Insider   I dis [...]

Perhaps It’s Time to Believe the Impossible By Cognitive Dissonance     "Alice laughed: "T [...]

The Essence of Control Is Its Concealment By Cognitive Dissonance   For thousands of years “control” [...]

There Will Be Blood…and Many More Lies By Cognitive Dissonance   I suppose if we randomly stopped pe [...]

Event Update For 2019-02-18http://jumpingjackflashhypothesis.blogspot.com/2012/02/jumping-jack-flash-hypothesis-its-gas.htmlThe [...]

Event Update For 2019-02-17http://jumpingjackflashhypothesis.blogspot.com/2012/02/jumping-jack-flash-hypothesis-its-gas.htmlThe [...]

Event Update For 2019-02-16http://jumpingjackflashhypothesis.blogspot.com/2012/02/jumping-jack-flash-hypothesis-its-gas.htmlThe [...]

Event Update For 2019-02-15http://jumpingjackflashhypothesis.blogspot.com/2012/02/jumping-jack-flash-hypothesis-its-gas.htmlThe [...]

Event Update For 2019-02-14http://jumpingjackflashhypothesis.blogspot.com/2012/02/jumping-jack-flash-hypothesis-its-gas.htmlThe [...]

With fusion energy perpetually 20 years away we now also perpetually have [fill in the blank] years [...]

My mea culpa for having inadvertently neglected FF2F for so long, and an update on the upcoming post [...]

NYC plans to undertake the swindle of the civilisation by suing the companies that have enabled it t [...]

MbS, the personification of the age-old pre-revolutionary scenario in which an expiring regime attem [...]

Daily Doom Photo

man-watching-tv

Sustainability

  • Peak Surfer
  • SUN
  • Transition Voice

Non-stick Pans and Sticky Memes"We have, through accident or design, structured the human ecology into a zero sum game, where [...]

Dancing with Ulysses"While it is yet unknowable if humans have the capacity to actually reverse climate change, a s [...]

Sargon and the Sea Peoples"For hundreds of years, stories of marauding Sea Peoples were told to frighten children."  [...]

Burning Down the Wall"Put a CARBONATOR-500 in a village in Honduras and you reverse the migrant caravans."Recen [...]

What can you do to prepare when you can’t?"A split vortex sending waves of cold into North America, Europe and Russia is what a warmer oc [...]

The folks at Windward have been doing great work at living sustainably for many years now.  Part of [...]

 The Daily SUN☼ Building a Better Tomorrow by Sustaining Universal Needs April 3, 2017 Powering Down [...]

Off the keyboard of Bob Montgomery Follow us on Twitter @doomstead666 Friend us on Facebook Publishe [...]

Visit SUN on Facebook Here [...]

To fight climate change, you need to get the world off of fossil fuels. And to do that, you need to [...]

Americans are good on the "thoughts and prayers" thing. Also not so bad about digging in f [...]

In the echo-sphere of political punditry consensus forms rapidly, gels, and then, in short order…cal [...]

Discussions with figures from Noam Chomsky and Peter Senge to Thich Nhat Hanh and the Dalai Lama off [...]

Lefty Greenies have some laudable ideas. Why is it then that they don't bother to really build [...]

Top Commentariats

  • Our Finite World
  • Economic Undertow

The difference between optimists, pesimists and realists is as follows: - the optimists see one aspe [...]

The peculiar and distinctive character of our civilisation is the destruction of the age-old agricul [...]

I would be inclined to date our civilisation from the beginning of the general use of coal-fueled ma [...]

Wow, it is great everything is free and all government services health, housing, education are high [...]

As some one who has spent years trying to figure out what the limits to growth are. let me say that [...]

Peak oil definitely happened for gods sake. Just because it isn't mad max right now is no indic [...]

@Volvo - KMO says he made some life choices he regrets. Not sure what they were. And I don't th [...]

I think KMO went on to do a bunch of prep, counting on peak oil coming soon. That didn't pan ou [...]

Here is a really good post on farming and meat eating from theautomaticearth: https://www.theautomat [...]

RE Economics

Going Cashless

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Simplifying the Final Countdown

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Bond Market Collapse and the Banning of Cash

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Do Central Bankers Recognize there is NO GROWTH?

Discuss this article @ the ECONOMICS TABLE inside the...

Singularity of the Dollar

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Kurrency Kollapse: To Print or Not To Print?

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SWISSIE CAPITULATION!

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Of Heat Sinks & Debt Sinks: A Thermodynamic View of Money

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Merry Doomy Christmas

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Peak Customers: The Final Liquidation Sale

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Collapse Fiction

Useful Links

Technical Journals

The wood rot decay of structures and buildings in Norway represents high costs. This paper reports t [...]

Since 1850, the rise in global mean surface temperatures (GMSTs) from increasing atmospheric concent [...]

Strong cold surge events (CSEs) are some of the most distinct winter weather events in East Asia, im [...]