Seeing as Chris Martenson's Alert blog post has a heavy focus on developments within Japan itself and the nuclear plant meltdowns, I thought it might be a good idea to create a separate thread devoted to discussing the potential economic ripple effects likely to affect those outside of Japan, and also what actions we have taken or are taking in response.
So to sum up Chris' three areas of immediate future concern in his Alert blog article, we have 1) A potential banking crisis, 2) Critical shortages of who-knows-what, and 3) A sharp decline in GDP and business activity. So looking at the near-term impacts at the most basic level, here are three of the biggest ones:
1) Impacts on overall financial mobility. We're talking the potential for limited or no withdrawals or transactions with our bank accounts, limited or no access to financial vehicles and investments, and delays in normally regular and prompt payments of any type (paychecks, dividends, payments from customers, etc.).
2) Impacts on availability of goods and services. Anything from not being able to repair your car (ex: both our vehicles are Japanese models) and getting the latest Apple iGadget (oh no! anything but that! ), to shortages of petroleum products and manufactured parts critical to our infrastructure.
3) Impacts on our income. If we're employed, perhaps we can expect our employers to (further?) cut our hours, pay, benefits, or even our positions as they struggle to adapt to reduced revenue. If we're employers, perhaps we may find our own business revenue slashed dramatically for any number of reasons (you can't get a critical part to produce your goods, your costs double, or maybe just nobody's buying much anymore).
So let's discuss these and any other potential impacts, and how we have already prepared or are planning to compensate for these difficulties. I'm betting if we compare notes most of us will find things other people have thought of that we overlooked.
Thanks for reading and participating!
In light of the recent developments in Libya and the airstrikes now underway, here's an important aspect of #2 of the original post that I think bears mentioning....
2a) Shortages of manufactured components and goods for military use. While really a subcategory of #2, I thought it worth highlighting due to the big geopolitical implications and the potential impact to our nations' servicemembers. Depending on how much inventory is available, in the coming months a wide host of nations may encounter shortages of certain replacement parts and manufactured goods for their militaries. This becomes even more relevant considering the increased military activity expending and using up more goods and products than they would in peacetime. The more complex the military equipment (as is often the case in Western militaries), the more likely it is to suffer in some way from the loss of some Japanese manufacturing.
As for preparation or adaptation plans, most I imagine would be limited to those in the service or in government and some of which may be too sensitive to mention here. But on the civilian side, one thing we could prepare for is the military getting priority in the distribution of certain goods that have dual civilian/military use. Automotive parts may be a biggie, as might be components and replacement parts for computer systems and electronics.
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