Friday, March 5, 2010

The Hidden Hoard

I just got done reading a small snippet on the blog by Michael Ruppert. Ruppert is one of the most known "doomers" around, and I'm eagerly awaiting his documentary "Collapse" to be released on DVD. Other than that, not very familar with his work. I took out his book "Crossing the Rubicon: The Decline of the American Empire at the End of the Age of Oil" and honestly didn't get that far into it. For one thing, it was huge and it seemed to go all over the place.

Anyway, he is apparently reporting from Greece. I look at Greece as a potential "canary in the coal mine", as far as how dire economic conditions are impacting the finances of sovereign countries. There are a few significant differences between Greece and the U.S., though. Their safety net and public sector are much more vibrant than ours, at least they were. Here, if "austerity measures" were imposed, there wouldn't be that much left to take away, other than Social Security or Medicare.

He did say something that interested me, though, and in which I agree:

Notice how the unions are arguing that the government is lying, meaning that there really is a hoard somewhere that someone is actually withholding. That's Old Paradigm thinking and it's very dangerous because the unions will rally their members with promises that cannot possibly be fulfilled. And by the time the union members see that they were lied to, it will be too late to do anything except fight, starve, and die.

The same could easily happen here, not just with untold monetary wealth but with energy. I just read an article in Newsday yesterday that gas could spike up to $3.50/gal. in Long Island by the summer. This is not due to speculation or gouging people, so much as it is about long-term energy supply problems affecting this country, as well as the rest of the world. But ask the average American his or her beliefs on the high cost of driving your car, and the surrounding costs of food and other supplies as a result, and they'll tell you that it's price speculation, or the oil companies are fucking us, or it's Washington, or the environmentalists, or some other phantom scapegoat. As Ruppert says, all this is "Old Paradigm thinking."

The energy question, as well as the jobs question, can lead to maniacs (Sarah Palin being just the most prominent example right now) being elected, with promises to "drill, baby, drill" in America for oil, or to somehow bring the well-paying jobs back that were long since exported to the east and south. And as Ruppert said about the Greece labor unions, these would be promises that can't possibly be kept.

The only way for us to survive and thrive is to let go of our dreams of expansion and limitless growth (which is impossible on a finite planet with limited resources, anyways) and take on dreams of a more realistic and scaled-down scale. The economy that is coming, I predict, won't be so much about jobs and money, but on the favors that each of us can do for each other.


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Anonymous said...

Jeff you are a moron. Get a job where you don't have to think because ranting is all you are good at and people don't like ranters in the workplace. Find small problems or make small promises to yourself and execute on them. Stop thinking BIG. Dumbass

Jeff said...

Hey, douchebag,

You contradicted yourself. I either don't think, or I think "too big". Which one is it? If you don't like the content of my posts, please feel free to let the door hit you on the ass, and don't come back.

Of course ranting is part of what I do. This is a blog, after all; I'm not writing a novel or a graduate thesis. Having said that, I try to make my posts as thought-provoking as I can. So again, if you don't like it, tough shit. There are literally tens of millions of blogs for you to visit, or better yet, you can make your own.