Mad Max

The Human Extinction Survey

SURVEY SUBMISSIONS TO DATE: 277

Off the keyboard of RE

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Published on the Doomstead Diner on May 17. 2015

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05-24-human-extinction

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human-extinctionEarly on when I began my journey into the World of Collapse, probably the biggest and most contentious issue that got kicked around on the Collapse forums and blogs was whether the monetary system would collapse in Hyperinflation or Deflation.  In fact here on the Diner itself this remains one of the most popular threads, with more than 30 pages of posts at this point.

Lately however, the Doom community has become more Doomerish, and what is being kicked around now is whether Homo Saps are bound for Extinction, not in some long distant future but in the Near Term.  In fact, some folks like Guy McPherson of Nature Bats Last are predicting this Extinction Level Event will occur as early as 2030, only 15 years down the line from present day.  Obviously, if you are in the process of going Extinct, the monetary issues pale before that one!  LOL.  For the purposes of this survey though, we will consider anything under a Century as "Near Term".

In an effort to get a better clue on what people think will occur here (and WHEN!?) as we move along the Collapse Highway, I worked up a little Survey utilizing yet another of the numerous Plugins I have installed lately to spruce up the Diner before I Buy My Ticket to the Great Beyond TM. 🙂

Before you take the Main Survey, if you haven't done so already here on the Diner, you may want to place yourself in on our Taxonomy of Doomer Types Survey.  If you have already done this survey before, don't do it again, it will skew the results.  I haven't got a way yet to stop Duplicates out by User.  I don't want to require email addys or any identification for these polls, as I think that would discourage readers from responding to them.

I came up with this taxonomy back in my days Blogging on The Burning Platform with Jim Quinn.  I had just 2 categories for it back then, now I am up to 4 with it.  Here's the old table though for some descriptions.  This goes back to 2011 BTW.

Topic

Doom Lite

Full Doom

 Dollar & Monetary System  We can fix the monetary system and rehabilitate the Dollar if we STOP PRINTING, feed Helicopter Ben to the Lions, Slash Spending, allow TBTF Banks to FAIL, Incarcerate the Criminal Banksters and use Precious Metals to underpin the currency.  The monetary system cannot be rehabilitated by any means, there will be a complete collapse of ALL Fiat money and financial instruments and commerce will for quite some time be mainly Barter.  PMs will only retain value in areas where there is a surplus of basic commodities.
Inflation, Hyper-Inflation, Deflation, Stagflation, DICK UP YOUR ASSFLATION WTF CARES ANYMORE?  WE ARE TOAST NO MATTER HOW IT COLLAPSES. WTF CARES ANYMORE?  WE ARE TOAST NO MATTER HOW IT COLLAPSES.
Energy To resolve our Energy problems, we must IMMEDIATELY begin building more Nukes, Drill Baby Drill for more Local Oil and build more Hydro Plants and Wind Farms, and eventually pick up the slack from lost energy from Imported Oil sources. Lost Energy from depleted Oil is Irreplaceable and it is far too late to stop an extensive Power Down throughout society which will halt most of our Transportation methods and bring down the Electrical Grid.  Our only choice is to prepare for a Low Energy footprint in the future.
 Goobermint  We can fix Da Goobermint if we Vote Out all the scumbag CONgress Critters and replace them with Honest Politicians who cannot be Bought who all demonstrate the Wisdom of the Founding Fathers and abide by the Constitution.  Said new Goobermint will be made much smaller with fewer Regulations and less Taxation, allowing Commerce to revive as the Free Market takes over.  Da Goobermint is inherently unfixable and corrupt and cannot be rehabilitated via the Ballot Box.  Only a Revolution can remove the current power structure, and the results of a Revolution will likely bring a new Goobermint as bad or WORSE than the current one.  The failure of the monetary sytem and energy systems will eventually render all large scale Goobermints unable to function, with the power vacuum filled by local Warlords and Dictators in most places.
Jobs We must stop the offshoring of Productive Jobs and rebuild our Manufacturing Base in order to build an export based Mercantilist economy with a Trade Surplus. The Industrial Model is FINISHED, even if we could rebuild Factories here in the FSofA, we wouldn’t have the Oil to run them anyhow, and there won’t be anyone here or abroad who could afford the products we build with them anyhow, because of the upward spiraling cost of energy measured in EROEI.
 Immigration  We must Seal the Borders and deport all Illegal Aliens and get FSofA Citizens to work at all the scut jobs at below Minimum Wage they currently fill to reduce Unemployment and reduce the liabilities of Aliens who are soaking up free Medical Care in the Emergency Rooms of our Hospitals.  We can TRY to seal the borders and deport the Illegal Aliens, but they will just be replaced by more home grown Citizens who are falling off the economic cliff and will be just as big a drain on the Medical System.  Besides that, at least on the Border with Mejico,  it will likely create an ever growing Shooting War with a Tsunami of Wetbacks seeking to escape an even worse situation in Mejico.
 Imperialism & Foreign Wars  We must STOP trying to be the World’s Policeman, bring all our Boys & Girls HOME and reduce the outrageous COST of maintaining the Big Ass Military.  As soon as we STOP running all our Imperialist adventures, we will basically be CUT OFF from the Foreign Oil still making its way across the Sea Lanes to our Refineries.  We also will crash just about the only type of “productive” thing we build here anymore, which are the Weapons of War and we will bring back a whole new crew of people to put on the Unemployment line.
 Free Shit Army & 30 Blocks of Squalor  We must end all transfer payments, all Welfare, Social Security and Medicaire which are all unfunded Liabilities we cannot afford.  Former Welfare recipients will be FORCED to go back to work and become Productive Citizens rather than Useless Eaters.  Old Folks will rely on their Savings and their Extended Families to take care of them in their dotage.  The minute we knock down all these social support mechanisms is the minute we turn into Egypt or Libya or all the rest of the 3rd World countries where the people with Nothing Left to Lose go BERSERK.  We don’t HAVE jobs these people could do, even if they were qualified to do any job, which they are not for the most part.  Most Old Folks have no savings, and the Extended Family died back in the 1950s for the most part.  The Medical Industry as a whole would COLLAPSE without Goobermint input, putting the Doctors, Nurses and Medical Records folks on the UE lines also.

China

 China will succeed long term because they are net creditors, have most of the Industrial infrastructure and have more Science and Math geniuses studying at Elite Universities.  China is TOAST because of outrageous Population Overshoot, a depleted Water Supply, insufficient arable land and insufficient local supplies of remaining Fossil Fuel energy.

 

FINAL

SOLUTIONS

 Boomers should be EXTERMINATED  Pigmen should be EXTERMINATED

 

The latest Compact Description of each of the new categories is below, and you can go HERE to take that Survey if you have not done so already.  However, don't navigate away from this page until you take the Survey below, which is much more comprehensive.

Tell Us How you Categorize Yourself

Cornucopian: You believe current problems are temporary and Homo Saps will eventually go Star Trekking
Doomer Lite: You believe we will have a Greater Depression, but eventually rebound from it
Full Doomer: You believe Homo Saps will undergo a massive Population Knockdown but will not go Extinct in this century
Uber Doomer: You believe Homo Saps will be extinct by the end of this century
 
Now, onto the Main Extinction Survey itself!
 
survey-saysAll questions in the Surveyl are Optional to answer, in fact even taking the Poll is Optional!  You're not required to leave any identifying information if you don't want to.
 
It may not appear to you that the form submission worked, because I haven't got the feedback page working yet.  However, trust me it does work! I tested it. I'll publish the Survey results after I get enough reasonably literate responses to it.  If you choose to write a really LONG answer to any question, I highly recommend that you compose it in a Text Editor on your own computer and Save It there before copy/pasting it into the Submit Box and hitting the Submit Button!  Just In Case.
 
There are Text Areas for each question, if you wish to explain your reasoning for your choice.  You are also encouraged to join us in the Diner Forum for discussion of these choices.  You can also use the Blog Commentary below for further discussion and explanation, although that will not go into the Published Survey Results.
 

the-apocalypse11

RE

The Dollar-Oil Nexus

Commentary below from Steve from Virginia from the Economic Undertow and RE  of the Doomstead Diner on the Dollar-Oil Nexus thread posted on The Automatic Earth by Ashvin Pandurangi.

Re: FPC: The Dollar-Oil Nexus 4 hours, 48 minutes ago #3186

After being confronted with that critique, a few of the Freegold people implied that they agreed with most of what Keen/Minsky have to say, but thought the debt deflation theory was incomplete, in terms of how central authorities can make sure the Mother of All Deflations never really takes off.

First of all, Fisher implies the (offhand) reflation strategy without going further. Leijonhufvud doesn’t offer any strategies at all! (Why should he?) However, (Free)gold folks’ awareness of nuanced (sensible) economic arguments never seems to emerge from their arguments. It seems to me that the monetary gold arguments were all made — and settled — by Wicksell and Bagehot a hundred and ten or so years ago.

Part of the problem is the absence of conventional ‘solutions’. Our dilemma lies within the inter-temporal balance sheet beyond the reach of monetary policy.

Almost no (as in zero) conventional economist makes reference to energy or resource inputs. Herman Daly equates money capital with resources (and Charlie Hall and Robert Costanza) but equilibrium economics is built around unlimited substitution. This is a dead end.

A conceptual problem is that we are at the beginning of post-industrialism. Nobody can figure out what ‘Post Industrial Society’ is going to look like or how it will function. Some think virtual reality (Kurzweil), others think ‘hunter-gatherer’ (J. Hansen) and still others a steam-punk version of modern Detroit (Greer). Human extinction is not out of the question: how does modern industrial economics factor all of these different possibilities and others beside?

Brand X economist: “Don’t blame me!”

In this context, the gold-money argument presumes a specific post-modern industrial economic society that functions/trades a specific way … a society that has conveniently forgotten Bagehot (and have never bothered to look up Wicksell). This is argument in a vacuum: not a real argument at all.

What does come next? Hard to say but the constant will be ‘less.

Re: FPC: The Dollar-Oil Nexus 1 hour, 28 minutes ago #3188

steve from virginia wrote:

In this context, the gold-money argument presumes a specific post-modern industrial economic society that functions/trades a specific way … a society that has conveniently forgotten Bagehot (and have never bothered to look up Wicksell). This is argument in a vacuum: not a real argument at all.
What does come next? Hard to say but the constant will be ‘less’.

Well stated Steve.

Overall, it is a conceptual problem.  The tendency is to accept axiomatically that even though the Fiat will crash, Homo Sapiens will continue to hold the same things valued and pursue “trade” in more or less the same manner.
This may however be one of those Roads that is a One Way Street, or even a Dead End One Way Street.

On the assumption (hope) it is not DEOWS, where will we go from here?  What happens once we reach the end of this road?
It’s all speculation, because insofar as we know (unless Atlantis really had an industrial culture before) we are breaking new ground here.  Nobody knows what a Post-Industrial world will look like.  Though of course there is no shortage of speculative Imagery out there from Mad Max to the Children of Men.

Personally, I think there will be a “Scavenger” period during which the flotsam and jetsam of the Age of Oil gets repurposed to keep stuff like the Railroads still operational for a while.  I don’t see a great future for money during this period, though if Goobermints of some sort hold together you may have some for a while.  You definitely cannot have functioning “Money” without functioning Goobermint.  After that it’s just barter, even Gold Coins are just Barter Items.  To make them “Money”, you need a Stamped Value placed on them so they are always worth the same thing inside a given trading system.

Money requires a SHARED AGREEMENT system between all in the society on the relative values of things.  When that breaks down, when some people no longer value a McMansion at all and others place preposterous Numerical Values on them, you have Mark to Make Believe  which no longer makes any sense at all.  That really is the problem here now, relative valuations based on the monetary system are not reflecting reality.  In fact, McMansions are WORTHLESS, and so are the Carz.  Helicopter Ben cannot MAKE a McMansion worth anything, he can only print Bills.  Even if he gave you a Billion of those Bills, there still would be no reason to trade them for the McMansion.

Our Value System is changing, MUST change because the Oil which powered this value system just isn’t there in quantity enough to keep the engine running, not on a Global basis anyhow.  Now we have to figure out how to value everything we still do have in the ABSENCE of Oil.  That is quite a challenge.

RE

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