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    Collapse Is A Process, Not An Event

    How does one ‘get ahead’ during hard times?
    by Chris Martenson

    Friday, September 18, 2020, 9:01 PM

Look, I’m a systems guy.  I think in systems terms.  You should as well.

Why?

Because we’re entering a period of time when the major systems that have supported humanity are going to fail.

Or, put more accurately: they are already failing.

As just one example, our monetary system delivers outsized gains to the already stupendously-wealthy while piling up massive debts on the backs of we citizens, both born and yet-to-be-born.  The US Federal Reserve is the unelected and unaccountable body that is most responsible for have made America’s billionaires nearly $1 trillion ‘richer’ since the pandemic hit.

These next three Fed-related data points are, in a word, obscene.

The first shows that the US Federal Reserve now “owns” more US federal debt than all foreign central banks. The second shows how billionaires are getting grotesquely wealthier from the Fed’s “rescue'” efforts. And the last shows how the Fed’s record-low interest policy has resulted in an explosion in federal debt:

(Source)

(Source)

This is obscene (and infuriating!) to anyone who cares about the future.  Leaving aside the morality issues for a moment, we can at least conclude that the behaviors and values on display are thoroughly unsustainable.

Eventually spending more money than you have ends in ruin.

Speaking of spending what you don’t have, a similar story can be told about ecological overshoot and humanity’s extractive practices —  it’s akin to spending both the entirety of the interest income as well as some principal each year from our environmental trust fund.

There aren’t many resources that one can point to which aren’t in some serious form of either concerning decline or depletion, or both.  Already thousands, if not millions, of people in the American West are considering relocating because of the ever-present danger of disruptive if not life-threatening fires:

The climate refugees are here. They’re Americans.

California, Oregon, and Washington are on fire.

At least 33 people have died in recent days, and more than 5 million acres have been scorched as out-of-control blazes rage across the American West. The 2020 wildfire season in California is already the most destructive in the state’s history — exceeding the record set in 2018, which in turn beat the record set in 2017. Experts agree that rising temperatures from climate change have turned much of the region into dry kindling, ready to spark in an instant.

“This is a climate damn emergency,” California Gov. Gavin Newsom said last week.

Disasters like these displace people. Tens of thousands of fire survivors have been forced to flee their homes, and more than 500,000 — half a million — Oregonians have been warned they might soon be ordered to leave. In the meantime, many evacuees are sheltering “in an assortment of RVs, cars, and tents.” Many do not know if their homes will still be standing when they try to return, or where they will go if those houses are indeed destroyed. The fires will eventually end, but for many residents of the region, the disaster is just beginning.

The climate refugee crisis has come to America.

(Source)

I’m less certain that we can pin these fires entirely on climate change, as poor land use and fire suppression practices factor in prominently. But I’m certain that many of the afflicted people will be convinced that wide-scale annual fires are now a permanent feature of the region, and that will cause many to move to ‘safer’ places.

Once that perception is solidly in place, the masses will relocate.  Similarly, we’ll see people abandon coastal areas which are already losing battles to rising sea levels, and other areas where droughts are getting worse and worse.

However you add up the data points, they coalesce into one theme: massive and disruptive change has arrived. 

You can either ignore that reality for a while longer. Or get busy responding.

Man, It’s Hard

The hardest part about detecting collapse lies not with the data – that is clear as a bell ringing on a still morning – but with the emotional difficulty of accepting it (and then acting on it).

There’s a lot of science behind how we humans are wired to accept or reject information based on whether it confirms or refutes, respectively, the belief systems we are already holding.

Nobody desires harder times for themselves. Nobody wants to lose financial ground or leave behind a worse world for their children.

But what we want has nothing to do with the reality of the situation.

What we want is usually based on our preexisting belief systems.  If those are out of alignment with the actual reality of the situation, then our best chances for personal success lie with adjusting our beliefs as rapidly as we can.

While our brains can come up with some clever delaying tactics and can-kicking technologies, the reality is that we’re just another organism on a crowded planet, subject to the same rules as every other life form.

When we have ample resources available to us, we’re peaceful, creative creatures.  We do really cool things, like figure out germ theory and make computer chips.

But what happens when resources are tight, or even insufficient to support daily life?

Then humans act badly towards each other and become tribal, but not in a good way.  We squabble and go to war over dwindling resources.  We do this not because it’s a dominant strategy with a proven track record, we do it because of our inability to wisely recognize the resource limitations in advance and cleverly avoid them.

During such times, the elites have a noted tendency to cling ever more tightly to their relative advantage rather than yield any of towards the common good:

“People of privilege will always risk their complete destruction rather than surrender any material part of their advantage.”

— John Kenneth Galbraith

That’s what’s underway right now.  Economic oxygen is in short supply and the elites are busy hoovering up for themselves a gigantically-larger share of that dwindling air (see billionaire headline above) even as tens of millions of their fellow citizens find themselves increasingly financially strangled.

On the political side, the only true political commitment I can detect (and it’s equal in both US political parties) is to defend the status quo.  In other words, they are committed to keeping the causes of our problems fixed firmly in place.

As this all progresses, most will experience the changes as a series of shocks, perhaps coming at too rapid of a pace for some to absorb and so it will become overwhelming to them.  The emotional costs involved will make it all very hard to accept, for myself included (even though I consider myself a very fast adjuster).

As our systems continue to fail, shrink, or even collapse, the pace of the changes will continue to be emotionally shocking.  I wish it wasn’t so. Frustratingly, it didn’t have to be this way.

How To Get Ahead

The ‘prediction’ that stems from all this is not really a prediction at all but rather a simple extrapolation: things are going to continue on their current trajectories.   Collapse is underway — and it’s a process, not an event.

To protect their relative advantage, the elites will pretend the problems are difficult to address and resist dealing with them.

This means the future will consist of a larger wealth gap, greater social and political tensions, more violence, less nutritious food, fewer insects and other species, more climate change, and a hard date with future resource scarcity.  And I mean hard.

None of which is actually all that unique in the human experience. Nor is it something to be necessarily feared.

As a species we’ve faced plenty of difficult times in the past and gotten through them. But some do manage to get through them better than others.  That will be equally true this time, too.

How does one ‘get ahead’ during hard times?

In Part 2: My Personal Formula For Success I provide a no-holds-barred transparency into how I am pursuing preparing for the coming future, as well as what efforts are working most effectively for me thus far.

There’s nothing about my formula that you can’t adapt and make your own. But you do have to follow it. And to do that, you have to start using the time you have left with an appropriate sense of urgency.

Click here to read Part 2 of this report (free executive summary, enrollment required for full access).

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46 Comments

  • Fri, Sep 18, 2020 - 10:53pm

    #1
    centroid

    centroid

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    centroid said:

    what's in the trunk of the car? apart from that we need more leaders with a science background. if women want inspiration just look at Maggie Thatcher and Angela Merkel. in australia we have "Scotty from marketing" announcing 2 more gas projects. After listening to Saifedean Ammous, (i dont agree with his theories on fossil fuels, but his other stuff on hard money , i love), i'm not convinced that democracy works any more and that we would be better off with monarchical government and a hard money standard. both tend to push planning/thinking out to the long term. thanks for another great article Chris. i'm about to watch your vitamin D video.

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  • Fri, Sep 18, 2020 - 11:01pm

    #2
    MKI

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    Systems

    Good post.

    Collapse is underway — and it’s a process, not an event.

    I very much agree nearly any collapse is a process - first slowly, than all at once. However, I remain extremely agnostic about anyone's predictive ability in a complex system like our natural world. So: when I can accurately predict the future in the shorter term, or meet somebody else who can, I'll become more open to believing in the predictive power of a theoretical collapse.

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  • Fri, Sep 18, 2020 - 11:44pm

    #3
    cicerone

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    Yeah. Butt.

    At any time in history, has a subsistence farmer with a shotgun been able to hold back the destructive political/economic/military tide washing over the land? I'm not anti-shotgun or resilience, but "rape and pillage" is a cliche for a reason. Fortified large scale political entities are the answer, not isolated homesteads. In other words, PP is peddling security theater. Change my mind.

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 3:16am

    VTGothic

    VTGothic

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    19

    Really?!? That's it? That's the choice?

    C'mon. Is that the only alternative scenario you have to the current status quo? You think some poor schlub on an "isolated farmstead" will not survive Big Military, but some fortified redoubt will? Dude, that fort is the first target in the region.

    (Is "isolated farmstead" even a thing - outside of Montana, I mean? This ain't the old West.)

    How about I spot you your Big Military Gone Wild scenario, 'cause obviously you're right about that. I'll say only this: that's one very good reason to also plant a food forest of perennial foodstuffs that can take care of themselves. If Big Military rolls through and keeps going, there's still survival rations during the rebuild. Of course, if Big Military comes to stay, things are more difficult, but that forest is still not pointless to survival.

    But how about some different scenarios? How about Big Military doesn't go wild? Or, what about the period between now and when Big Military goes wild, if it does? What about short-term or interim supply chain breakdowns? What about finding a family of climate refugees from the west coast wandering down your country road this winter, looking mighty desperate? What about if your neighbors are among the first to lose work as the economy fails? What about your own family in economic distress? What about any number of scenarios other than Big Military Gone Wild?

    In all of those, a functioning farm is a help. Even a serious suburban backyard garden and a few food forest plants in the corner can make the difference in very many ways.

    Tell ya what: during this year's late spring-early summer shortages and rolling outages of food at the local grocery stores I was completely untouched. Nothing in my life changed. Why? Because I always have a deep larder, dry goods storage, and a greenhouse in addition to vegetable fields, and I have near neighbors who grow good organic beef, chicken, and sheep. Short of Big Military campaigning through my quite rural neighborhood, we can live outside the fragile economy and doubtful supply chain as a mutually-reinforcing community forever. Very many of us don't even need utilities piped in.

    In addition, we do happen to have a lot of hunters around here, with some mighty fine weapons. And they're used to moving quietly and blending in. I would not rule out their ability to wage a guerrilla campaign if Big Military got to thinking it could write its own rules on our backs. You don't have to win a guerrilla campaign, you only have to cause the other side to decide the price of their win is too high.

    Now maybe if you can convince your whole county to fortify against the state or federal government, just maybe you'll be big enough to withstand your state government's militia. But you still ain't surviving the determination of the local branch of the US Army and/or Air Force. Some scenarios are not winnable; that does not mean no scenarios can be improved or tamed.

    Hell, if I listen to you, there's finally no point making any preps of any kind. Might as well pack a bag and wait for FEMA to come cart me off to some safety center, and hope I don't starve while waiting for rescue from that increasingly thread-bare operation. And forget about even thinking of being able to provide resources to my neighbors and family. Might as well all roll over and die.

    Or, what the heck, I'll tilt at windmills. If nothing else it's good healthy exercise today, and I enjoy it as a lifestyle. So, I'll go ahead and make the preparations I can make while I can, so that I'm in better control of my life and circumstances if SHTF than I would be if I didn't, and so that I can help others from a half-full cup, and so that I can work from a position of strength with my neighbors to harden our community when the current structure goes soft and starts disintegrating.

    Here's the thing: if the local community calls a meeting to figure out how to work together to survive, some will show up with skills and resources, others will arrive with nothing but empty hands. Who do you think gets to sit at the grown up's table and make plans? I want a say in how that conversation goes, because when all else is said and done, I care about the humanity of our relationships with each other and I want our community to evolve through hope and charity, not devolve from fear and the reactionary impulses fear engenders. The very last thing I want is for us to all throw up our hands and not try 'cause, who knows?, the big old Army might come stomping through any day now.

    Beyond all of that, even if nothing big and bad ever happens and all of us on PP are deluded, there's this: my grown kids know that if their personal lives get hard (just as if everything does collapse) this is their Plan B. There's room, there's food, there's resilient infrastructure, there's scale-up abilities, and there's even a succession plan they all participated in developing, and approve. If I do nothing else, I leave them an ark of tangible wealth. They can live and thrive here if they choose, or if they must. So I will die contented.

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 5:25am

    #5
    Nutgrower

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    Forest management: the new BS

    Its makes my blood boil when I hear that the way to save the forests of the West is to "manage" them more. As a lifetime outdoor enthusiest and a invasive plant specialist for the State of Oregon I have worked in every nook and cranny of this wonderful state. Millions of acres of forest land in Oregon are under so called "management" whether they are part of the large private timber holdings or the National Forest/Bureau of Land Management systems. Take the time to obtain maps of our national forests and see how extensively roaded they are.Take the Willamette National Forest, the countries greatest timber producing forest next to where I live for example. This one forest alone contains 3.000 miles of forest roads. The motto for this forest historically was "a billion board feet or bust" And they achieved that. Currently 17,000 acres of timber sales are being layed out for sale in one Ranger District alone. (thats my daughters job by the way and part of my salary). Add this up with all the activities in the Deschutes, Umpqua, Rogue, Ochoco, Wallowa Whitman, Hood and more and you got a lot of forest management going on. Funny the most fire resilient forests are often the older forests, the most burnable are the younger ones. Weyerhauser's tree plantations have burned very nicely during this current event. Climate change, for all its originating factors is the number one variable driving the current events.So if you want to continue to drink the "forest management" cool aid, go ahead. All I can say is when you hear that term, follow the money, its what its often about. Thanks for listening.

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 7:56am

    #6
    MAV

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    no-holes-barred

    The phrase is actually no holds barred.  Referring to wrestling.

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 8:14am

    Thors Hammer

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    That's the (only) choice?

    Let me describe another scenario---one perhaps no more improbable than Kuntstler's World Made by Hand.

    ---The USA becomes even more culturally and politically fragmented, tending toward a simmering civil war and continuous conflict.

    --- The national government has lost all moral credibility and political legitimacy.

    --- The era of US financial hegemony ends with the US dollar being replaced by gold backed inter-currency swaps.  The clear victors: Russia and China, who had the foresight to accumulate most of the world's gold and engineer the collapse of the US dollar as the world reserve currency..

    ---The USA sinks into third world economic status, having lost the ability to print dollars at will and to manufacture hardly anything of utility.

    --- The world wakes up  to the fact  that the US military has no  ability to threaten anybody and extract their national wealth for the Corporations as they have always done.

    As the USA fragments into culturally homogeneous blocks,  the region of Cascadia declares it's political independence.  The knee-jerk US reaction is to warm up the bombers for a shock-and-awe campaign  to coerce the separatists back into line as has always been national policy.

    The long experience of the Cold War with the Soviet Union and the Sanctions War with Russia has shown that  the only effective counter to an enemy determined to conquer your country is MAD-- Mutually Assured Destruction.   Fortunately for Cascadia it chose to seize the entire Trident submarine ICBM weapons system based at Bangor WA on the day it declared independence.  In one stroke the US military's ability to deny Cascadia's independence was neutered and the new country freed to go its own way into whatever future it can  create.

    Cascadia: The world Capital of Water----- Northern California, Oregon, Washington--- eventually united by treaty with British Colombia.

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 8:30am

    #8
    T-Storm

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    The immoral Federal Reserve

    More irrefutable evidence of the Federal Reserve Bank’s sins and immorality. Thank you Chris for relentlessly exposing the bad individuals and institutions that continue to be the root cause of the decay and fighting in our society today. History proves with certainty the negative effects on society that are associated with inflating and printing away the fragile fiat green paper. Does the Federal Reserve expect a different outcome? Or are they deceiving and bribing the US citizens? I am 99% sure that the answer is the latter. It is time for their reign of terror to end and restore an honest money as the backbone of society.

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 8:49am

    #9
    2retired

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    2retired said:

    Entropy, entropy, how you torture me. The history of castostropic fires in the northwest over the last (say 1000) years, shows a regularity,  and an inability of humans to change these events (while now living there). Is it any different than living on top of a volcano (Montserrat or Stomboli), or living next to the pacific (tsunami & earthquakes) and storm surges (me) + fires. The BC coast is littered with remnants of small cities, villages and homesteads that have returned to "virgin" forest (my passion was for years seeking out these sites), and for a test (the largest US naval base outside the lower 48 in WW2, now invisible).

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 8:57am

    Thors Hammer

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    Thors Hammer said:

    Hi Nutgrower

    I grew up within three miles of the point of origin of the Holiday Fire that destroyed the 150,000 acre watershed of the most beautiful river I have ever known.  I was  a wildland fire crew with the McKenzie ranger district during my university years. One summer we had a vague smoke in the high alpine that we could never locate by flying it. As the time to go back to university neared, the district fire ranger asked to requisition a couple horses and me to go put it out.  He was turned downed since it was near the end of the season.  I went back to school, a strong East Wind came up, and the smoker burned 127,000 acres including the Hoodoo Ski Area.

    I've "managed" most of the timber in the Upper McKenzie area, driven the roads, built trails and burned slash piles.  As the most productive stand of old growth Fir in the country I'm sure it has been "managed" to a far greater extent  than when I was there.

    However, in the Oregon Cascades the fall East Wind is a force of nature beyond anybody's ability to control.

    ps:  My handle, "Thor's Hammer" comes not from illusions of grandeur, but from a distinctive rock formation across from my home farmstead.

    ps2:  If you are a Nutgrower you may know my old high school ski buddy, Joe Goodpasture, owner of the large filbert orchard just across from the surviving Goodpasture covered bridge!

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 10:16am

    #11
    Chris Martenson

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    Forest Management is not the New BS

    Not sure why you took exception with what I wrote, but here it is again:

    I’m less certain that we can pin these fires entirely on climate change, as poor land use and fire suppression practices factor in prominently.

    Note the use of the word "entirely" and the phrase "poor land use."  It's an incontrovertible fact that people are building homes in places that tend to burn, new forest growth or old.

    As more homes are placed in those combustible spots, we're going to have both more fires and more damage.  Why more fires?  Because you have to run power lines to those homes, which are apparently a fire hazard, and sometimes the idiots in those homes hold gender reveal parties that utilize fire-starting explosives.

    As well, forestry management does come into play because, well, we do tend to use lumber.  Because of this it means that you aren't going to have all old-growth forests everywhere.  But even if you did, the ancient fire scars in old tree ring patterns say "fires were a routine part of life" and were to such an extent that various tree species made fire a part of their life strategy (e.g. thick bark on redwoods, and pine cones that only open up after a fire, etc).

    Regardless, as long as people are using lumber trees are going to be cut, and now forestry management factors in hugely.  Any regrowth needs to be thinned.  That's management.   You can manage it aggressively and well, or not at all and poorly...either way that's "management."

    From what I'm reading, both PGE line maintenance and the forestry management practices in some areas are sub-standard and could be improved.

    So, yes, it's definitely a factor and not "BS" as you say.

     

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 10:26am

    #12
    Tonya McKinney

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    “Good” Will Prevail In The End

    I love being prepared but I am an optimist and we will find new solutions and it will all work out in the end without our society collapsing. Most of us do get along, most of us are not rioters or socialists and just want peace.  When I was in college, a professor showed slide after slide how we would run out of a lot of natural resources before the year 2000. None of that happened because of new technology. We will find a way out of this.  The late 60’s early 70’s our nation felt like it was collapsing, then the pendulum swung the other way.  Such is the way of life!! Stay optimistic!!

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 11:28am

    #13
    Mysterymet

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    Big military

    Guys, please understand the military of the USA is made up of citizens of the USA. They are your neighbors, relatives, coworkers etc. the US military is not one monolithic entity. Military members are not mindless robots. They are ordinary people that do a job their country asks of them. However, if called upon to hurt citizens there would be a definite rift in the military and “Big Military” would fragment. The national guard and reserve force straddle the divide between the military and civilian worlds. Being part of the communities they serve, they would be much less likely to abuse the civilian population than people imagine when they put forth these scenarios.

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 1:04pm

    Barbara

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    The military might be

    Since our communities are so divided, with hate and toxicity on both sides, I'm not sure if the military is part of "the people" any more.  Which people, living and working where?  I might say well, the national guard is part of my local community right here.  But so are the local police and so are the pretend "demonstrators" here engaged in vandalism, looting and intimidation.
    We can't form a community these days.  So, who will the military fragments side with?  Would we simply have an endless cycle of provocations on both sides, like Portland has seen?  It becomes harder and harder for rational heads to prevail as violence increases.

    As a society, the US has found it impossible to reach a consensus on unacceptable behavior.  The left claims words are weapons [they are] and then proceeds to use those weapons to intimidate anyone who disagrees with a left position.  So, is there really NO DIFFERENCE between you making a crude sexist joke at my expense and you placing your hands on me?  Well, sorry "me-to"s -- there's a big difference.
    Many on the right have claimed there are no peaceful protestors, just criminals, anarchists and vandals, hiding behind some fancy rhetoric.  They want violence to be met with force, regardless of the level of the infraction or the escalation implications.  Again, is there really no difference between fire-bombing a car or building with people inside and a spoiled brat throwing a single rock while calling the police names?  On our rational days, we know there is a difference.

    "The people" can't decide from what the military/police should be protecting us or what "protective" behaviors are acceptable, under what conditions.  How can we possible expect military units to know what to do if they're ordered to take action against the local population.

    Maybe a positive action would be to get to know the commanders of your local military and national guard units.  If calmer heads in the community are familiar to them, we might be able to intervene to de-escalate violence.  Our local politicians were supposed to be this restraining force, but in our politically hostile world, we can hardly expect restraint from them if large parts of a local population refuse to recognize a politician's authority.  And I'm not talking about young, radical demonstrators refusing to respect political authority or KKK units running around with AK's.  With the inept responses to Covid, larger and larger numbers of people are losing respect for local political authorities, and it's not just extremists on both ends.  At least around here, responsible, thoughtful people in the middle 2/3 are getting disgusted with the stupidity at the local and national level.
    Of course, most mistakenly blame the "other side" for the problems - not a good sign for a peaceful resolution.  And most of the military has a side also.  You probably think the military's side is conservative, but I know many sophisticated, thoughtful career military people who have ended up more middle of the road.

    I hear more and more thoughtful people remarking that this election cycle has a high probability of ending in violence, since both sides have set the expectation of "tampering" and the looser will invoke that instead of admitting that nobody, especially in their own party, wanted them on the ballot in the first place.

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 2:03pm

    #15

    Mark_BC

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    Mark_BC said:

    I just cut my vacation short by a few days due to the smoke enveloping British Columbia from fires in the US. I couldn't see any views of majestic mountains. YOU RUINED MY VACATION!!!!! lol.

    I was exploring the backroads and wilds of the Chilcotin. Gawd it's beautiful up there, not necessarily in-your-face grandeur, but nice pastoral / wilderness expanses that go on for hundreds and hundreds of km. I'm lucky I live here, I could easily get some homestead land in the middle of nowhere and disappear. Except I have no money. It would be nice if pet rock prices went up more, then I could do something useful before the reset happens.

    Regarding forest management, it all depends on the particular forest. Some forests like Douglas fir tended to burn more frequently with less intensity so that the big trees survived. With our fire suppression activities we have let them get choked out with unchecked growth and become dangerous ticking time bombs.

    On the other hand, much of central BC is lodgepole pine which instead tends to burn less frequently in massive catastrophic infernos. This is a natural process but our previous fire suppression has allowed a lot of stands to reach maturity which then makes them vulnerable to mountain pine beetle. It seems that climate change may also be contributing as the cold winter temps needed to kill off the beetles are less frequent now. So if you look on Google Earth you'll see massive expanses of harvested forest with roads everywhere. This was to salvage the trees that had died from the beetle and were a major fire risk. Now they have been clear cut and new forests started.

    In my opinion the true evil against nature in our forests is not from poor forest management (although the extent of clearcutting in coastal rainforests was a disgrace), but selling off forest land for rural real estate. Even though it may look pastoral and pretty, this is a permanent destruction of natural forest with major impacts on wildlife and invasive species introduction. By contrast, a 10,000 hectare barren clear cut represents prime wildlife habitat and will soon revert back to a new forest stand with all the access roads deactivated and reverting back to nature.

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 2:08pm

    planfortomorrow

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    planfortomorrow said:

    Yep! BOB

     

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 3:47pm

    #17
    centroid

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    centroid said:

    i like it when chris quotes things like we each have about 200 slaves working for each of us every day and just how much it would take to reduce oil use. it would be good if you had links to these facts and the supporting material so we can copy and paste them into, in my case the local government media outlets. thanks

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 4:26pm

    Thors Hammer

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    Forest Management is not the New BS

    Hi Chris:

    I'm in accord with your statement that forest management is one part of the fire picture in the California and Oregon wildfire future.  In some locations it can be pivotal, and in others like the Willamette National Forest it has little significance for  the fire landscape. You are incorrect that "any regrowth needs to be thinned"  --- impossible and against good reforestation practice in a huge Douglas Fir forest like the Willamette---but very useful in a pine forest  like that which grows in  the foothills above Bend.  (Grown from a small town 12,000 to a city of 150,000 by virtue of Californication)

    When I first  heard that  the fire which destroyed the McKenzie Valley had started at Holiday Farm I recalled bucking hay bales for $3 per hour as a 14 year old kid. And I immediately knew that  the fire was human-caused because I'd never see a lightening strike in the valley floor in 20 years of growing  up there and fighting lightening fires in the surrounding mountains.  As it turns out the fire that wiped out the town of Blue River was caused by inadequate electrical line  maintenance exactly like the one  two years ago in Paradise California. Americans, being the individualistic and profit-centered people they are, learned nothing actionable from the Paradise disaster.

    Over the decades since I grew up there the McKenzie Valley gradually filled up with private homes hidden in the woods along the river.  Virtually none were designed with any thought of surviving the wildfire that reduced them to smoking piles of rubble.  And its not  as if designing for survive-ability is rocket science or very expensive.  Over the years I have proposed such houses to clients and met  only rejection because they didn't look like the homes of the neighbors or score high enough on the MC-Mansion scale.  I've finally come 180 degrees in my beliefs from wanting to design homes that will survive anything Nature throws out and provide shelter for future generations to believing that homes built in woodlands should combust  as readily as possible and disappear into the earth in the hope that  another silly human will not come along and try  to plant  themselves where they don't belong.

     

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 4:26pm

    mememonkey

    Status: Bronze Member

    Joined: Nov 01 2009

    Posts: 140

    16

    Optimistic Realism

     

    I love being prepared but I am an optimist and we will find new solutions and it will all work out in the end without our society collapsing. Most of us do get along, most of us are not rioters or socialists and just want peace.  When I was in college, a professor showed slide after slide how we would run out of a lot of natural resources before the year 2000. None of that happened because of new technology. We will find a way out of this.  The late 60’s early 70’s our nation felt like it was collapsing, then the pendulum swung the other way.  Such is the way of life!! Stay optimistic!!

    Tonya,

    The implicit assumption in your post that optimism as a strategy is a superior approach to  dealing with life’s challenges is well founded.  This has even been proven empirically.

    However I believe you are fundamentally incorrect that technology will somehow save us from the predicaments that frankly, are themselves the result of technology.

    Technology that is both a function of and that has allowed humans to exploit fossil fuels and massively overshoot and degrade their natural resource base.

    At their core, our industrial social, economic and political systems are incompatible with the natural limits of the planet.

    Your appeal to techno fixes also ignores the diminishing returns on complexity inherent in the equation.

    Your argument that your professor was wrong on his timing of resource scarcity predictions and therefore some how proves that we are not ever going to run out of our resources or reach critical debilitating bottlenecks is built on several nested logical fallacies.

    Indeed one  can make a strong case that the social and economic disruptions  we are currently seeing increasing exponentially are at their core,  a function of running short of the master resource, oil.  Specifically  as manifested in the rapidly diminishing EROI

    In a complex adaptive systems timing is hard to predict. Phase changes and end states, not so much.

    Think of an avalanche.  One can guage the snow amounts and conditions and accuratey predict that an avalanche is almost inevitable but it’s hard  to predict the timing unless the ski patrol is loading and aiming their avalanche guns (or the Fed is Turbo charging their printer) and it’s of course  much easier to predict that the snow will be at the bottom of the mountain when it’s over

    So does this mean the end of human civilization?  Probably and hopefully not but the potential exists as we can likely survive the monkey’s with bulldozers dilemma  but monkeys with hypersonic nuclear weapons is more problematic.

    But likely soon and certainly within most of our lifetimes there will be massive disruption to life as we know it that can only be classified as an acute phase change in the ongoing collapse of our current social systems and institutions.

    Which as Chris points out is a process (to which I’d add is also a function of location) and one which, if you’re aware of our overarching predicaments, we are currently in.  Indeed if you take the historical  view, encompasses the 60’s and 70’s turmoil you referenced.

    On an individual basis, optimism is indeed an important and integral strategy to adapting and surviving the emergent  chaos.

    However blind optimism or techno hopium as a panacea to our predicaments  is counterproductive to those goals and has the effect of constraining positive actions and adaptations you might otherwise undertake if you had truly internalized the scope and significance of those predicaments.

    Writ large, these collective delusions have theoretically prevented our civilization from making necessary adjustments and potentially a transition to sustainable steady state systems without the massive pain and disruptions that are headed our way.

    I think Chris and Adam’s approach embodies an optimal  approach of optimistic and informed adaptive action in the face of realistic understanding of the true nature of our collective predicaments and serves one better than a Pollyanna perspective.

    You might want to revisit the crash course or watch it if you haven’t yet.  Your form of techno optimism looks naive  in the face of that data and analysis.

    Also I would recommend reading Overshoot by William Catton, The Collapse of Complex Societies by Joseph Tainter and for an ‘optimistic’ perspective on our collective journey down the back side of Hubbert’s curve read The Ecotechnic Future by John Michael Greer.

    All of which might reframe the context in which to deploy your admirable personal optimism.

    mm

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 4:51pm

    Thors Hammer

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    Replying to Big military (#13)

    Citizen soldier army?   You've got to be kidding.

    Why do you think the draft was abandoned and replaced with a mercenary force recruited from the poor and unemployed?  Wasn't it because too many white pipsqueak officers were fragged in Vietnam?  The George Bush bunion exemption was always available for the sons of Those Who Really Mattered, but it is always safer to recruit bright  potential drug lords from among the Black and Brown and train them to be great soldiers than to rely upon the flaccid sons of the white middle class for your officer class.

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 5:36pm

    Mark_BC

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    Mark_BC said:

    I agree. Technology hasnt improved the declining eroei, it has simply allowed us to chase resource deposits with a lower eroei. Also consider that the reason the US continues to be able to consume so much is because of the reserve petrodollar status. It is importing and consuming the rest of the world's resources.

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 5:52pm

    agitating prop

    agitating prop

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    Tonya McKinney

    "Most of us are not rioters or socialists."  Every country in the civilized world is socialist, Tonya. Where 'ya been?  I'm a Canadian democratic socialist and damn proud of it!

    Our worst fear is ending up like the US where it is super easy to convince people that socialism is BAaaad. And people protesting police murder of black people are 'rioting.'

    In the minds of many Americans police murdering black people is okay, but police asking white people to mask up is putting the dear things on a slippery slope to Auschwitz.  Completely idiotic.

     

     

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 6:20pm

    Mysterymet

    Mysterymet

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    I know some military people too. I have served with them.

    I don’t need to get to know the members of my local reserve unit because I have already known them for years. I myself am center, lean conservative. Many of the people I have served with are the same way. There are military members of all political leanings but MOST (70+%) of the ones I know from the units I have been in lean right or slightly right. Could other units be different? Sure, other units could be different. Personally I do NOT mix my politics with my service. I have served presidents of both parties. Its about the country. As far as what communities. Every community in the country probably has at least a few serving reservists or guardsmen in it. You might not realize it but the guy or gal delivering your mail, repairing your car, flying your airliner, delivering your baby or, teaching your children might just be a reservist or guardsmen. I believe in the constitution. You want to find out what military reservists or guardsmen really think first hand? Join up. We are always looking for good people. Someone has to take my place when I retire shortly.

    my views are my own and in no way represent the official views and positions of the US military.

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 6:36pm

    Mysterymet

    Mysterymet

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    The poor are actually under represented in today’s military

    https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/01402390.2019.1692660?src=recsys&journalCode=fjss20&journalCode=fjss20
    https://brandongaille.com/27-intriguing-us-military-racial-demographics/

    https://www.cfr.org/backgrounder/demographics-us-military

     

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 6:45pm

    #25
    nordicjack

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    My share

    My share of the deficit is about 300k for my family of 3.    I am dumbfounded where the money has gone.   Being that local governments should take care of the basics  of law enforcement and elementary schooling,  There is not much for fed to do.   Yeah they do stuff like regulate insurance, agriculture, medicine etc... But the a lot of  it is MILITARY..and the crazy homeland security fear agenda.   and even that is little in comparison.    I am sure a lot goes to incarcerating people for petty crimes that cost a lot more to society than the crime. ( they spend time locking up small timers not big-timers because its easier,  I can cite examples here ..  )  And then you have the welfare roll , its pretty big , but at the end of the day, I dont see 300k for my household over the last 20 years.  ( most( almost all ) of this debt is in the last 20 years )  This doesn't include another 300k paid in taxes over the last 20 years.   And yet I  do not see many new interstates , universities, airports and other critical infrastructure.    Highways are over-crowded and  as are universities( much harder to get accepted - all florida public universities are now greater than 4.0 on average acceptance )   Not a lot of new hospitals. Bed count per capita has fallen continuously for 60 years to less than 1/2.   Our own medical schools do not produce near enough Drs..as we need.  Most are foreign educated now.

    This is far from the american dream.   People get out school and pay student loans for decades.   And no matter how much money you make its never enough.   Retirement  seems impossible.  Paying your children's education seems impossible.  Responsible middle america cannot afford more than one child..   While those in low-income have many to get handouts. ( they incentivize socialism and laziness ) You must choose whether you are tax payer or hand-out beneficiary.   The former is getting too hard. So, hard normal people have to find scams to cheat and steal.  Most people that have money did it by taking advantaging of someone either illegally, or at minimum, unethically and immorally.

    You must tax the money where it is and balance the budget.  However , I do not see this happening any longer.  That opportunity was missed about 12 years ago.  I think we should all pay are taxes with play money like the gov't has loaned and given us.

    I do not see a solution to the problem.   failure is evident.  And considering how long ( less than 20 years ) to get really out-of-control,  I do not think we will be years from disaster , rather we will be only months.  This pandemic is enough to push it over the edge.    Its not a bad thing - it has to happen.   There will be no federal reserve in 5 years. there will be now US economy in 5 years.  There will likely be no US in 5 years.   Someone better start writing policy and come up with a contingent government.   I do appreciate that Dr Martenson has focused on your own responsibility and resilience and prosperity.   But at the end of the day, we will eventually need to work together to survive unless the world population is cut by 75%..

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 6:53pm

    ao

    ao

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    9

    laughter is good for the soul

    Agitprop, thank you for that amusing post.  It came close to provoking a full on belly laugh.  But I think it may be more fittingly placed in the Definitive Humor Thread.

    I'll contribute my own bit of humor as well.   Enjoy!

    How many Socialists does it take to screw in a light bulb?

    Just one, but when it inevitably fails, they will be sure to inform us it wasn't a real light bulb.

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  • Sat, Sep 19, 2020 - 9:11pm

    nordicjack

    nordicjack

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    0

    you noticed lumber prices?

    Yes lumber is up about  200% in last year mostly since the pandemic.    It wont come down.  By the time supply gets better,  inflation and other factors will cause higher prices.   It makes it very hard to sell or buy a home at the moment.  But it would be easier if you were coming into the market the first time rather than flipping.    Housing market is in short supply.   Would seem to be hard to buy,  but even harder to sell and buy, if you get out  too cheap  to move into something else , you could be in a lot of trouble.

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  • Sun, Sep 20, 2020 - 12:25am

    SagerXX

    Status: Gold Member

    Joined: Feb 11 2009

    Posts: 462

    3

    VTGothic

    That post was f***ing beautiful.  Mahalo.

    Viva -- Sager

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  • Sun, Sep 20, 2020 - 1:21am

    planfortomorrow

    planfortomorrow

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    planfortomorrow said:

    Barbara, we will be too busy overseas somewhere, say Venezuela fighting to "help" the citizenry but our motivation will be control and the free flow of the largest oil reserve in the world right outside our back door. The military gets called upon to unite the country behind a favorable cause. So, I am NOT  on the side of filling our streets with our son's and daughters to fight with us for the removal of 4 out of every 5 chickens I may have, or half of my lambs and turkeys. We have been down this road many times before and we only need to prepare ourselves from ourselves. There is evil everywhere and it will be unrestrained, even within our own family's. Folks that never seen this coming will want what you have because they can do the math. They see you have abundance so will offer you " 5 cheeseburgers tomorrow for one cheeseburger today". Good Luck, and remember," the only fear you have to worry about is fear itself".  I am very generous but, I do feel it is fair to expect that work I must do that I need help on can be made whole by those I help and in return help me. Especially in a family as large as mine. I cannot feed 127 people and these are my Sisters, Brothers, their kids and their kids. I would love too but I can't. Besides, most all have thought I am paranoid and silly. I am but I'm right to do what I'm doing and besides, I love every second my work around our small but productive piece of land (12 acres, mostly Oak trees and Maple, Pine trees, etc... Now, I have been getting more and more attention of late as they (family members) are waking up. I started a new area to grow another garden not because I will need it but because it gives me more capital for what I believe will be as good as Gold in the not to distant future. I wish you the very best luck and contentment that you can gather. Peace

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  • Sun, Sep 20, 2020 - 11:18am

    #30
    nordicjack

    nordicjack

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    Who do you think our military is made of?

    I know a lot of people are worried about the military mission in this dooms day scenario.  What part they will take , or literally what will they take from you.  I assure, when things melt down enough , and they will - there will be no US military.   As ex military.  I know where the back bone of our military manning comes from.    Its your average inner city minority and your rural gun loving homesteader.    None, which will ever take arms against their own by any type of force.   They will lay down and roll-over surprisingly quickly.  The  US military will be useless against its own.   Completely and utterly useless.

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  • Wed, Sep 23, 2020 - 11:53pm

    #31
    WG_Burton

    WG_Burton

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    History of Central Banking and the Enslavement of Mankind

    Babylon, Sumeria, Rome, Spain, Portugal, Spain, France, Netherlands, South Africa, Germany, Britain, the US, now China.

    Has anyone to yet to recognize, let alone act against, the inflationary, debt-accruing algorithm that is inherent in fractional reserve banking, the destructor of currency and nation-state? https://www.facebook.com/photo?fbid=10215479626098467&set=a.2581078740917

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  • Fri, Sep 25, 2020 - 8:19am

    #32
    tbp

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    Muh socialism and muh racism

    @agitating prop
    "Most of us are not rioters or socialists." Every country in the civilized world is socialist, Tonya. Where 'ya been? I'm a Canadian democratic socialist and damn proud of it!

    Our worst fear is ending up like the US where it is super easy to convince people that socialism is BAaaad. And people protesting police murder of black people are 'rioting.'

    In the minds of many Americans police murdering black people is okay, but police asking white people to mask up is putting the dear things on a slippery slope to Auschwitz. Completely idiotic.

    Name one place where socialism has been "successful" (good for the people) for more than 1 generation. Do it, say "that wasn't real socialism", or upgrade your perspective. If you're intellectually honest you'll have to do one of the 3.

    You're buying into false narratives designed to weaponize you against your fellow citizens. Your cities are burning and you're supporting those behind it. That's what's "completely idiotic".

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  • Fri, Sep 25, 2020 - 11:07am

    #33
    agitating prop

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    agitating prop said:

    There are several examples of 'socialism' working on the planet for more than one generation --  and successfully. Western European nations, Canada, etc...all doing better than the U.S.  They are not perfect just better than end stage capitalism where all the wealth accrues to the top.

    In collapsed Communist countries, the people were always told that their ongoing  failure was due to their struggle to wrestle the last vestiges of  capitalism from their system.

    Now in the U.S. there is a similar doctrine where failures of that system are being blamed on the undermining influence of socialists and the left wing and yadayadayada.

    And looking at California, I totally get why people would believe that.  But that isn't the source of the problem.  The source lies at the federal level that taxes far too little and supports the military far too much. A crazy quilt patchwork of social  programs, with huge bureaucratic costs are offloaded onto state, county -- as a result.

    This isn't so much about socialism as it is about trying to do an end run around a federal government that funds war while ignoring things like universal health care, building and maintaining mental hospitals for those who desperately need this kind of care, etc...

    Democratic socialism that enshrines the rights of the individual, with an emphasis on personal responsibility, is the answer to the problem, not the problem itself.

     

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  • Fri, Sep 25, 2020 - 4:19pm

    #34
    Mysterymet

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    Sorry even the nordic countries aren’t socialist

    1. https://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydorfman/2018/07/08/sorry-bernie-bros-but-nordic-countries-are-not-socialist/#685f6c9d74ad

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  • Fri, Sep 25, 2020 - 4:44pm

    vshelford

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    Re 'socialism' and the nordic countries

    Forbes magazine is using a precise definition of socialism in a precise context, which is not how the talking heads use it.  I suspect for most left-leaning Americans, they're just looking for the looser and now more common usage, sometimes referred to as democratic socialism, and which Forbes, with its capitalist bias, prefers to call "compassionate capitalism".  In Canada, it means that we have collectively (democratically) set up and maintained a government-run, tax-based, single payer health care, elder care and education system which has proved to work (in my opinion) much better than the "owe-your-life-to-the-insurance-companies" system in the US for health care.  It's far from perfect, but it works well.  Niggling over terms doesn't get us any forrader.

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  • Fri, Sep 25, 2020 - 5:16pm

    Mysterymet

    Mysterymet

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    Don’t want socialized medicine

    I have very good insurance through my employer so you can keep your socialized medicine. I could get FREE healthcare through the VA but I would rather pay my copays. Socialized “Masshealth” death paneled my mother. Then they tried to confiscate he rest of her estate to pay off the cost of healthcare she did use even though she was paying “premiums” every month into that Crummy system. You can keep it. For the poor in the USA given them the VA system where people can pay in a sliding scale for income. Give the vets Tricare Insurance. Leave people with good insurance alone!

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  • Fri, Sep 25, 2020 - 5:30pm

    vshelford

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    Replying to Don’t want socialized medicine (#36)

    You're making my point for me - thank you!  I am talking about the Canadian and "nordic" systems, not the bastardized US one.  What happened to your mom is NOT what would have happened here in Canada.

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  • Fri, Sep 25, 2020 - 6:00pm

    #38
    Mots

    Mots

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    "single payer" vs "socialized medicine" is complicated

    Vshelford and Mysterymet    both make very good points
    Just because something is government dispensed "single payer" does not mean socialist or non-capitalist.  I have been to the hospital and to clinics many times in my country.  I used to work (4 years) for a major pharmaceutical company here and have asked related questions at the clinics and hospitals I have visited over the years regarding price and competition.

    We have single payer wherein the Japanese government takes money (social security payments) from each person based on their previous year's income to make sure that everyone pays into it.  Each hospital visit gets the same reimbursement, and for every service the doctors/nurses can tell you exactly the true cost of materials and treatments.  This is because they have a very active capitalist system wherein many device/materials providers are competing on price and quality.  With single payer, hospitals/clinics benefit by minimizing costs and handling many patients, who are free to visit alternative hospitals.  If you dont have insurance (and lack a good reason, they will take the real cost and triple it and bill you triple).  If you have a good reason for lacking the national insurance, they just make you pay the actual cost (which is similar to the out-of-pocket costs that Americans pay in America for the same thing.)  Because of the incentives, low cost materials/treatments combined with highly skilled workers may take the place of very expensive machines/drugs of dubious but extremely profitable value in the US.  This includes simple things like blood drawing and particularly interventions, which are only used as a last resort.
    Here is a real life example: an American nurse was bragging to me that she uses a high tech 100$ needle to draw blood that avoids pain.  Just two weeks earlier in Osaka I complemented a nurse who drew blood for me without me really noticing it, due to her skill.  The entire health checkup in Osaka, which included blood work, doctor consulation, EKG etc. was $100 without insurance and I paid cash..... as much cost as the high tech needle used by the skill-free American nurse.  I am not exaggerating.

    Even the dentists can quickly tell you the real cost of a service.  In many cases the true cost is similar to the out of pocket costs experienced in the US sick care system.

    Meanwhile, private insurance and private providers thrive for those who want more service.  In other words, I can without national insurance get a cavity filled, tooth capped etc for the same price as my out of pocket costs used to be in America.
    My point is that a single payer national health plan can be very market driven with much lower costs and better outcomes compared to the existing monopolist/hedgefund driven system affilicting the US.
    We dont seem to have death panels here and I don't know much about that.  Maybe because the doctors are in charge , and maybe because a very active private health insurance exists in competition.............

    Come to think of  it, maybe we do have death panels.  A death panel consists of a doctor-patients relatives meeting wherein the doctor explains "this is what we can do under the national health insurance" and proposes what he can do for out of pocket costs that could be billed to the patient.  This is why private insurance still exists for those who want to go beyond the normal treatments or who have particularly difficult cancer etc.
    I had this kind of death panel consultation a few years ago following a head injury.  I suggested an MRI and the doctor said that national single payer plan would not pay for that but he could do it for $300 payment.

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  • Fri, Sep 25, 2020 - 6:12pm

    Mysterymet

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    You don’t understand what “Masshealth” is

    Masshealth is state run “insurance” in massachusetts. It is closer to socialized medicine but state government run not national government run. The state death paneled my mom. I will never support socialized medicine.

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  • Fri, Sep 25, 2020 - 9:54pm

    vshelford

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    Replying to "single payer" vs "socialized medicine" is complicated (#38)

    And it seems to be very varied, too.  A Canadian citizen has very few situations where there are any out-of-pocket payments.  In every situation I have seen or heard of personally, the care you need is the care you get, especially in an emergency.  When my husband cut off several fingers in a table saw accident, he was taken by helicopter from our little island to the hand unit at Vancouver General, and his fingers sewn on again.  It took a long haul of physio to get the hand back in use, but he's got 90% use back, just a bit of stiffness where the joint was severed.  The ONLY charge we had, through both the surgery and the physio, was a nominal $85 for the helicopter ride.

    I had a severe viral infection in both eyes, and by the time the virus was under control, I needed corneal transplants.  I got them and have my sight back.  No charges.

    My dad eventually died of A-plastic leukemia.  All treatment and care that was needed was given.  No death panel and no charges.

    Our healthcare is paid for by our taxes, which are based on our income.

    You'll have to forgive us for being passionately defensive of this system, especially when it is so persistently put down for being "socialist".  I don't care what words people want to assign to it, I just know it works.

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  • Fri, Sep 25, 2020 - 9:55pm

    #41
    2retired

    2retired

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    2retired said:

    Universal medical plans can be done well or badly; unfortunately the discussion is often hostage to established interests & politics (health unions or health insurance companies). Both Canada, and the US could improve care delivery at (much) lower costs if they opted for almost any other country's plan (France, Germany, Italy, Japan that I know from personal observations). But my experience (17 years management/40 years practice) found few who would look outside their sandbox.

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  • Sat, Sep 26, 2020 - 1:33am

    #42
    ezlxq1949

    ezlxq1949

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    Death panels unknown in Australia

    I've been following these recent messages with interest. Australia's medicare system is rather like Canada's, although ours seemingly privatises more of it.

    We have a public system and a private system. The former rations out resources by waiting time, the latter by price. One can purchase private health "insurance" but it's complicated and could be a lot more efficient. We don't face the massive premiums that US residents do.

    Taxpayers pay a Medicare levy as a small % of their income, and that funds a great deal of the public system. The attitude here is that we are happy to help share one another's burdens. For us the US sickcare system is the go-to example of how NOT to do it. For our neoliberal, market-obsessed Federal government, the US system is THE goal. We're a l-o-n-g way from it, I am glad to report.

    Any Australian resident (with a Medicare card) will be treated in an emergency at no charge regardless of the expense of the procedures and regardless of income level. Years ago my brother was raced into hospital with an appendix ready to burst (he was OK). Cost: nil. A while back I spent a night in hospital in an emergency. Outcome: good. Cost: nil. Recently I had a colonoscopy as a public patient. Same-day procedure; results: all clear. Cost: nil.

    In mid-October I will be fitted with a pacemaker. My cardiologist is alarmed at my condition and was able to get me onto the public list months earlier than I was expecting. It involves the surgery and an overnight stay. Cost to me: nil. A friend of mine had his done as a private patient, with 2 nights in the hospital. Cost: $42,000. He was able to afford it because he'd been paying regularly into his health fund.

    If this is "socialised" medicine, I support it enthusiastically.

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  • Sat, Sep 26, 2020 - 3:45am

    #43
    Mysterymet

    Mysterymet

    Status: Bronze Member

    Joined: May 23 2020

    Posts: 92

    3

    Emergency rooms

    People in the US cannot be turned away from the emergency room in a hospital even if they can’t pay.

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  • Sat, Sep 26, 2020 - 6:22am

    VeganDB12

    VeganDB12

    Status: Silver Member

    Joined: Jul 18 2008

    Posts: 233

    1

    problems with US vs Canada

    VShelford-years ago, in the mountains of Quebec, I had a serious injury and got compassionate outpatient care free of charge, as an American. That was an incredibly positive experience and in retrospect remarkable as I was allowed care as a visitor.

    Many doctors support single payer (who cares who pays really they all pay much the same).  Still, our population is much larger than Canada's by almost a factor of 10 and densities vary greatly; the issue of state versus federal funding and massive opposition by the insurance industry keep us from getting to the point of single payer.  The health insurance industry is a big percentage of our index funds as well,  that is the bottom line here imho and the main reason we won't see it unless the private insurers "manage" single payer.

    Socialized medicine varies a lot from country to country imho. It means one thing in China, another in Canada, and another in the UK etc....the delays for specialty care in the UK that I hear about worry me.  The low to no out of pocket costs are awesome. Still I think applying the Canadian model here would necessitate centralized funding and planning by the federal government, to properly distribute services, staffing and funding. There are people who live to do that kind of work but they get left to collect unemployment as the for profit model gets more and more distorted with respect to providing care for patients. Sadly.

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  • Sat, Sep 26, 2020 - 6:51am

    Susan7

    Susan7

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    Joined: Feb 15 2020

    Posts: 77

    2

    Susan7 said:

    Centralized funding and planning by the Federal government is exactly why there are treatment delays in Great Britain. Having worked in government medicine here in the US, I’ve no doubt that paucity of tertiary care along with treatment delays would be the rule here. Of course, those with sufficient wealth would not be so impacted.

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  • Sat, Sep 26, 2020 - 7:01am

    Susan7

    Susan7

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    Joined: Feb 15 2020

    Posts: 77

    3

    Susan7 said:

    You got your pacemaker “months earlier” than expected? Here, you would have a wait of possibly several weeks but certainly not months. How long do you wait for joint replacements? Are you even eligible after a certain age? Many Canadians come down here for that I’m told. Many people hate the for-profit system here but while not perfect, it’s far far preferable to the expensive, rationed care of some other countries.  No one is denied care here despite the propaganda.

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