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Wednesday, September 13, 2017

end of era


END OF ERA

We all hate that dingus that talks about how he walked uphill both ways mowing an acre of lawn with a rotary mower in July for a quarter.  Dude!  You keep getting cost of living increases in your Social Security-you know, that retirement scheme where you get paid back what you paid in in like three years and then live another ten or fifteen after that while sucking down free medical care, while I’ll never see a dime of all my money, you greedy creepy little humpstick-and yet you think you ain’t getting enough to live on and don’t want to pay me $3 to mow the lawn even though your quarter and my $3 both pay for the same movie ticket although mine actually buys less since I don’t get a double feature, and I end up mowing your damn lawn for $2, with you supervising and just go screw yourself, okay?  Actually, no, I take that back.  Thank you!  Thank you for teaching me at a tender age that working hard for crap wages sucks and I should beware that my whole life.  Not that it helped for thirty-four years, I just kept working harder and harder for less and less, thank you declining empire.  But at least I was never as shocked or surprised after that.

*

Isn’t that the worst part of getting screwed?  When it comes as a shock?  Leaving a longtime girlfriend that hates you isn’t as bad as leaving the wife you thought was going to grow old with you.  Knowing the bastards at work have it out for you isn’t as bad as thinking work needs and loves you and that suddenly handed you a pink slip.  I think that is the worst part of our ongoing collapse.  You know bad things will happen, but that isn’t enough to prepare you for the shock when something does, because you only were aware of generalities rather than specifics.  We all know the oil is running out and as more dwindling energy is devoted to getting energy out of the ground so other industries are going to fail.  But we didn’t see it coming when the medical industry went from 20% inflation a year to 200%, or when our insurance costs tripled and our deductibles quintupled.  Detroit cars were crap prior to the industry bail-out but we didn’t expect the quality to drop even further, exponentially.  We won’t be ready for when Amazon closes its doors ( if you rely on them to store your movies or books, beware ), or when Wal-Mart declares bankruptcy.  We SHOULD, but we won’t.  We SHOULD be ready for our military to suddenly out of the blue face a major defeat, but we won’t be.  Surprises are like that.

*

It comes as a surprise to us when two hundred year old gun companies suddenly deliver crap quality firearms.  Or when suddenly fifty year old war surplus weapons are no longer cheap.  When Conex containers go from $800 to $3,000, we are astounded the cheap ones are no longer available.  Why it is no longer possible to buy a house for two years wages.  Why you can’t find cheap used travel trailers anymore.  Why the regular dentist used to charge you less than what the “free clinic” does now.  Knowing the trend is easy, adjusting it the details are not.  We are still fighting the logic of Retail Quality Decline, which started at one place and then spread like wildfire.  We still rail against the pioneer ( curse you to Hell, Wal-Mart! ) and are astounded at the copy-cats ( why have you forsaken me, Home Despot? ).  We look at an entire industry, the bankers, who cheat and steal and get a government free pass to do so, then act shocked at one company in that industry ( Wells Fargo is cheating and lying and charging customers for phantom accounts! ).  Granted, we aren’t AS shocked as folks who never saw the trend, but it is still painful, isn’t it?

*

We know the next show we go to in the theatre has a 90% chance of being a giant turd with no plot or character development, nothing but explosions and fast cars, or gunfire.  Or guns with gunfire.  We still go to the movies.  Or, if we don’t, we still take our chances with RedBox, don’t we?  As a quick aside, do you think you’ll ever have to liquidate assets to survive financially?  I’ve been telling you to sell now, as folks won’t have the extra money soon.  But here is another reason.  Sell those crap quality turds now, because people still think all this low quality high cost stuff has some value.  We are all in a loop of denial and wishful thinking, unable to divorce ourselves from the consumer economy but are left with few worthwhile items to consume.  And of course this really sucks because prepping is in large part stocking which is buying.  I mean, it is all well and good to say “skills over stuff”, and that is true to an extent, but man is a tool using monkey and you need tools.  And tools are NEVER about just skill unless you make them out of stone.  You still need to join the marketplace to buy tools, or the materials to make them.

*

Decline net energy and a broken and dysfunctional economy are already rearview mirror occurrences.  And we still are shocked and surprised when that lesson is underlined every day.  At this writing, I have no news on the petrochemical industry in south Texas.  But I’ll wager, if there was severe damage, not all of it will ever be fixed.  Not because the CEO’s are smart enough to know their future input supply is in decline, but because they are smart enough to know their declining profits are going to force them to keep the involuntary reduction in product as a de facto reality.  The prices will surge on reduced supply and then gradually fall in price as the declining demand due to wage destruction continues.  Related, how many fast food places will close shortly?  Quality reductions and staff reductions are already New Normal, so how long before overcapacity starts its Grim Reaper willowing?

*

Right now, a good portion of our economy, the 70% devoted to consumption, is propped up with cheap credit.  All the profits in decline are enough to pay interest on old loans and enough new loans to stay in business at a loss.  When the bankers see any kind of trouble, probably from the derivatives market, all that credit evaporates ( there will still be credit for the fracking industry, of course, but not for whole sectors of the consumer economy ).  And, surprisingly, that huge upsurge in unemployment is going to take you by surprise.  We all know the Oil Age is in decline and soon to die, yet are still shocked and dismayed when another indicator appears.  We are shocked when there are shortages such as rice or eggs or antifreeze or ammunition, blaming centralization or the current president, ignoring the energy supply equation ( energy that the banking sector needs and isn’t getting enough of, to explain most of our economic contraction ).  Just like I knew the next job would pay even less and be offered by even bigger incompetent greedy whores, and yet was still shocked and stressed when it happened.

*

Very soon, I would wager that your job disappears along with most of the consumer economy.  Whole chains will disappear,  even if that store had no competition in your town.  It is time to think about NOT consuming as much in the future.  It is time to assume that you don’t have a decade or two left to prep.  Again, I understand no one ever really stops prepping as far as stockpiling goes.  Even those at it for decades still see deals now and again and can’t stop case buying.  But the question is, are you MOSTLY done stockpiling?  Do you have the basics?  Every one of you can afford the BTN Basics.  Three years of wheat is still only about five months worth of cell phone plans, and even if it is a bit more the drop in ammo prices even out the whole thing.  2008 Redux is NOT all that far away.  Don’t look at it like ten years on means we have another decade, look at it like you can’t believe the reprieve has lasted this long.  That was Baby Jesus giving you a second chance.  If you refused to take it, I wouldn’t count on another miracle.  If you square yourself away now, you’ll still be shocked when the economy does crash again, but at least you won’t be sorry.  You KNOW this is the logical conclusion to a trend.  Now ACT like you know it.

END ( today's related link http://amzn.to/2etD1v6 )
 
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25 comments:

  1. "Skills over Stuff" is actually false. You might be a super gardener but you will starve if the caloric count is not high enough. The guy whose only cooking ustensil is the can opener, but has large amount of food stocked, will survive instead.

    Also, the "Zero-Skill Approach". If the super gardener dies, all the rest dies with him as the whole setup was critically centerted around that guy. A Zero-Skill Approach is set up for 10 year old children. Nobody is critical. Extremely resilient plan.

    This also eliminates all the specialist stuff like long-distance shooting, FLIR scopes (I had to include these as part of the non-written rule here) or elaborate canning.

    Your children will specialize according to the new situation, which cannot possibly be anticipated. Maybe jury-rigged drones will be a thing, substituting Calories with Watt-Hours for patrol duty. Or it might not be a thing at all.

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    1. What we need is to return back to a simple peasant existence when tools and skills were all basic, easily transferred and trained?

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    2. This is a plan, however it's not the best plan. It's the first plan you can set up for your 10-year old child in the envent you'll die soon after the lesson.
      Yes it takes years to master agriculture, but a peasant is by no means a master, actually many were quite stupid and quite sloppy too.

      Once your child grows older you might want to specialize him on a higher value level. But we have to remember that anything relying on written knowledge or information is very time-intensive and will not yield fruits for the first ten years. Reading & writing was at minimum a craftsman knowledge (often his wife was trained instead of him, and had to do the accountancy chores).

      We all take school for granted but it is mind-boggingly expensive (State expenses : 8500 EUR per pupil per year in Middle High School in France). In my experience home-schooled children are a mixed bag, with a few chances of having healthy, comprehensive knowledge and much more chances of unbalanced, ideologically-tainted, sometimes faulty knowledge and practices.

      Teacher is actually the dream profession in developping countries because it is equivalent to wealth and tremendous value-generation. It is also a very specialized, niche job, that next to no survivalist thinks about.

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    3. Teaching is also a energy surplus era occupation, yes? I don't think it will survive too much longer, definitely not last into the Dark Age ahead.

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    4. Another great reply Ave.

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    5. The worst thing this rotten assed gov't did was to hijack the public indoctrination system as it is at the base of ALL societal ills nationally and internationally.

      Simply put, people have programmed to be non thinking herd members, and they have learned it well.

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    6. Did they ever highjack it, or was it always under their control? At most, they just increased their micromanagement.

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    7. Schools (elementary level) used to be run by the local town or county or parents. Then the state and federal governments got involved - first by offering money $>$ then 'guidelines' now the federal just tells the schools what they need to teach ages, grades, standards, etc. So some of both but it used to be under LOCAL control 100% and local funding 100% and teachers were paid less than the postmaster but more than the ditch digger (usually) but also had restrictions on allowed behaviors...

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    8. However, being compulsory, schools under any level of govt control were never pure. The type of control might have shifted but it was always indoctrination.

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  2. To answer the topic proper, it seems to me this is only a continuous degradation of what still exists. It can only go so far. I like that you used movies as an example. JJ Abrams is the poster child of "killing the milk cow", he seriously damaged the Star Trek franchise, but that franchise was quite unequal in itself, then it destroyed the Star Wars franchise (which didn't tolerate abuse as much, being the civilisational icon that it was) and then made the "Star Trek Discovery" series genetically unlivable and doomed to be still-born.

    Yet we can still somehow afford the time to watch it on TV or movies. it's crap but we still have that option open.

    What I do seriously fear is when they suddenly want to destroy us for no reason, like they did in Argentina in december 2001 for instance. Or Greece in 2014.

    Then large parts of the economy collapse simultaneously. The media will still picture those areas able to purchase the same as before, in pure Soviet/DPRK fashion, but in reality there is nothing to buy because the whole area is not economically viable.

    I remember the kiosks in Russia, fortified like Mad Max Territory, you're only able to trade through a small opening. The armoured cash transfer vehicles where completely Mad Max, high perched on large buggy wheels, very MRAP-like.

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    1. I love today's armored car guys. 50% above minimum wage, and half the time all alone. As far from safe and secure as you can get and still have issued insurance.

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  3. Jim I didn't comment yesterday but I have never seen you with a higher comment count. I love todays post you seem to have bounced back and skewered every subject that you thought drove your #s down. Classic Dankin style. I have been a follower since almost the beginning. I personaly think you give a good picture of what frugal and basic prepping should focus on. Keep on with what you do . The future is not glitter and unicorns and people need a voice that says so.

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    1. I was worried the article was too off topic, that no one would like it. I almost thought about adding another article ( my aborted book on the dozen best books of PA, one chapter ). Glad I didn't. The minions keep proving contrary :)

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    2. "never seen you with a higher comment count" - You missed the really old days. The one's before moderation. Total chaos. LOL

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    3. Never on topic, but they were great fun. Like ZeroHedge used to be ( didn't they sell the site? If so, it would explain the more retarded articles and less retarded comments. Course, tards can be fun to watch.

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    4. ""never seen you with a higher comment count" - You missed the really old days. The one's before moderation. Total chaos. LOL"

      Those where the days. Wonder what ever happened to Black Dog and the guy who thought James lived in Africa. :)

      Idaho Homesteader

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    5. I have my sneaking suspicions Mean Minion is the African picture guy. A connection back our beginnings here in Blog Land.

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  4. In what I like to call "The Event" I often wonder about the exchange of goods: silver, carrots, ammo, whatever. It seems to me that such exchange requires a safe, a stable environment. What keeps one from just seizing the other guys goods? What would such a Fair look like? Who would provide security.

    I have a piece of silver, let's say and want to trade it for a pig. How would that work on the ground? How would value and price be established?

    Just wondering. It might not be simple. Would it even be possible?

    Any opinions?

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    1. That's actually an easy one. Hosted on Kings ground with his security. Of course, he gets a cut.

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  5. You'd better watch out Lord Bison :-)

    http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/09/13/national-park-service-looking-people-kill-bison-grand-canyon/

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    1. You'd think they'd let the Indians do it. Kind of rubbing salt in the wound.

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    2. Prezactly. In Puget Sound, the only people who kill a protected endangered orca are the local indian tribes. Bob Satiacum and his brothers in power boats with a .50 cal bolt action cannon is what it takes to safely do one of those beasts in. I'd be more enthused to see the "natives" take on a killer whale pod with canoes and spears for a fair fight.

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    3. Course, natives also forced a herd off the cliff. Oops! Species extinction ( well, more likely Prehistoric Gore Warming, but probably a bit of both )

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  6. As an aside - I read your blog at work during smoko. The computer I'm using is retarded and I can't post replies for some reason.

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    1. Does it use the latest Microsoft OS? The NOL had hers upgraded and it seems pretty HAL, taking over from the human all the time.

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I must moderate-trust me. You don't want to see what happens otherwise. Sometimes it takes awhile to respond as I only check two or three times a day. No N-Bombs, nothing to get me libeled. Otherwise, have at it. If you criticize me, make sure to praise my hair first.