Cowpoke suggests that if you plan to go somewhere, there is no time like the present to get on with it. My wife and I decided to get out of the city (Phoenix AZ area) 4 years ago – took a year to figure out where to go and 3 more to get partially settled in — and that was without having to check in to a full time job. we still have a couple of years to really get settled and reasonably self sustaining. Each step requires the physical change and then more time to figure out how to live it. Even though I spent much of my childhood years living off the grid, in a remote community, growing our own food etc. the mental change to leave the TV behind, ease back to once a month to the stores, learn to enjoy each other along with the sunset and the chickens & horses again is a major challenge for many — at least it is for us.
The good part is that we wouldn’t go back to the city even if the economics reversed and everything was back building the "American Dream"
The time may be now to embark on a wonderful adventure, and perhaps the most fufilling part of your life. !
No more time clocks for me
Here is where I found things strange for me. I finished my professional degree & worked for some Hospitals & other large Corporations. Then I went to work for myself. I seemed to have it all, new sports cars, boat, nice big home etc. The good thing is all this stuff was & is paid for.
What surprised me was when I was visiting a family member that had moved to Costa Rica. I could not get over how these native people had fun with very little. It was all about family there & not so much about material & work. They laughed more than I & had a great sense of well being. Sometimes these natives would catch me thinking about stuff (like what I had to do when I got back home, too many worries). They would laugh & say don’t worry be happy.
Simple people can teach us far more than many think.
The people I know in Central America tell me the Great Depression never bothered them at all. They will be far less affected than us because they don’t need heat or air and food is no problem at all. Oil will be an issue but not as bad as Cuba’s situation with the former Soviet Union collapse IMO.
My observation in Central America is that the Governments are a joke with what they provide so people are already very self reliant. This is not like our system where so many people have become a ward of the welfare state & what it provides them for their vote. This is where people have failed themselves with their own lazy ways. These will also be the people that will be most effected when the freebies are cut off.
One Dr from Switzerland told me just a few days ago you will not like what is coming believe me. He said I grew up with socialism & it is not fun. People here do not understand what is coming. He said at least in Europe they know what parts of socialism work & how to implement that. He said our country will have to most likely learn the hard way. Why we are even heading down this road is beyond me but it is the big wheel that appears to have all the momentum.
All I have to do is go to a mall & see so many young people with a big flabby arm as big around as my thigh having to get in their BIG SUV with all this junk they just bought, That tells me there is something very wrong here. The ones I talk to could careless about what is really going on in the world other than whats on American Idol & who does the coolest Tattoos in town. Really pretty pathetic.
I always had to laugh when people from other countries would come to visit me in the USA. They were always so polite & humble but they couldn’t help but ask me why are people so big & ROUND here???
We need to fail here to get our act back together & get a real sense of true purpose IMHO but hey thats just me.
By the way, if somebody can find a rich Russian, we can all quit worrying about collapse ………….
It is August. In a small town on the South Coast of France, holiday season is in full swing, but it is raining so there is not too much business happening. Everyone is heavily in debt. Luckily, a rich Russian tourist arrives in the foyer of the small local hotel. He asks for a room and puts a Euro 100 note on the reception counter, takes a key and goes to inspect the room located up the stairs on the third floor.
The hotel owner takes the banknote in hurry and rushes to his meat supplier to whom he owes E100.
The butcher takes the money and races to his wholesale supplier to pay his debt.
The wholesaler rushes to the farmer to pay E100 for pigs he purchased some time ago.
The farmer triumphantly gives the E100 note to a local prostitute who gave him her services on credit.
The prostitute goes quickly to the hotel, as she owed the hotel for her hourly room use to entertain clients.
At that moment, the rich Russian is coming down to reception and informs the hotel owner that the proposed room is unsatisfactory and takes his E100 back and departs.
There was no profit or income.
But everyone no longer has any debt and the small town people look optimistically towards their future.
I know we are supposed to be serious and on topic, but ………..
"The Fatal Shore : The Epic of Australia’s Founding" by, Robert Hughes offers a great deal of insight into what governments and people are capable of in times of desperation. Transportation truly was a dark chapter in the history of a civilized nation. How could a system of justice become so perverted that children are sentenced to a 10,000 mile journey in the hold of a ship for stealing vegetables? How could the "rule of law" be used as a disconnect to clear the conscience of a society willing to "do away with" a portion of the population? The history of collapse or even near collapse is not a pretty one but maybe the "creative destruction" that Alan Greenspan talks of applies to civilizations as well as economies.
The hotel owner takes the banknote in hurry and rushes to his meat supplier to whom he owes E100.
Later . . .
the rich Russian is coming down to reception and informs the hotel owner that the proposed room is unsatisfactory and takes his E100 back and departs.
This is a trick. How could the Russian get his E100 back? He couldn’t.
*****This is a trick. How could the Russian get his E100 back? He couldn’t.*****
Yes he could….The room is no longer needed. The hotel refunds and loses but everyone else is out of debt. I think we can just lose the Austrian Model and Keynesian economics and go with the Russian Prostitutional theorum……
Trick or not, the Russia Theorem is about as good as what we have.
Alternatively, maybe a Jubilee year of debt forgiveness would work as well
PickertyCat – I agree it doesn’t pay to focus on the negative and to give it power. Prepare for the worst and hope for the best is still good advice. If the worse holds a choice between disaster and coping then isn’t it best to choose? Thats how it seems to me.
They will pay the price; the unprepared. Trouble is you can’t tell what the future may hold and you may prejudice your options by judging others now. Maybe it will be your neighbour who pulls you from the train wreck. Our systems insulate us from real experience of each other. Everyone has value and it is IMHO essential to recognise that it is so even if you are unable to recognise a specific value at one time in one or more people. Whos fault is that?
The reason other cultures seem to be more balanced and to have more fun is that they can’t escape each other and so learn to live together. They often have no where else to go. We on the other hand can cast each other out of our lives on a whim and do. Even family members are cast out by some. Its the same reason people eat too much and take a vehicle rather than walk. Why we watch TV instead of talk or play and why we surf the net. The same reason dogs lick their testicles.
Our way of being is about to become a hindrance to our survival so we must change it. In our new future the person who knows how to cure our unbearable pain may be that ‘fat slob’ we wouldn’t give the time of day.
Don – I agree that you shouldn’t pre-judge and dismiss people offhand. Everyone has their skills and value, and you do need to take a reasonoable amount of time to discover what they are. Unfortunately, some people don’t have the will to use their skills or share their value, and the time will come when you have to weigh whether their potential value costs too much. You may end up realizing that you just lost someone who you now need, but their will to survive was too weak for you to have continued dragging them around and supporting them. A good analogy is a specialized tool that is heavy, bulky, and takes up a lot of room in your toolbox. Yes, it might be the absolute best tool for a particular job, but can you afford the space and effort to keep lugging it around with you if it doesn’t do anything else or is prone to malfunction?
The reason other cultures seem to be more balanced and to have more fun is that they can’t escape each other and so learn to live together. They often have no where else to go.
Yikes! That sounds like my definition of Hell! If I couldn’t escape other people and go off on my own for a large portion of the day, I’d likely go postal and someone could be grievously injured. (I think most introverts would agree) I’d also argue that this kind of densely populated over-socialization may be the cause of community breakdown in our culture… when people are always on top of you, you start to insulate/isolate yourself for self-protection. There is a limit to the amount of "togetherness" humans can tolerate. Your tolerance level appears to be much higher than mine, which is fine as long as we both realize and accept that neither way is the only way.
I get the feeling that you think I’m a harsh and judgmental wench… but I’m really not. I’m an Idealist, and I would desperately love to help everyone and have everyone be happy and cooperative. Unfortunately, my life experiences have taught me that I need to temper my generous nature with a healthy dose of pragmatism or else I end up damaging myself. I am, myself, one of those people who most people dismiss offhand — I’m female, I’m socially awkward, I’m a geeky nerd, I’m a dreamer, and I’m a bit OCD. And yes – I watch TV and surf the Net more than I talk to my neighbors because this is about the only form of interaction that I find comfortable. Oh yeah, I used to be fat, too, and I’m sure someone will allways consider me lazy. I am a freak and a social outcast, and have been all my life…I’m not prone to prejudice because I now what wearing that boot feels like.
I think many of the "everything will be business as usual" people out there will experience a dramatic shift in priorities once they see the writing on the wall, or rather as they smack face-first into the wall. It’s not as though they are all stupid (ok well I admit SOME are) or lack useful skills and knowledge, it’s just that they were either unaware of the problems coming or refused to acknowledge them until the changes knocked them on their butt. Some undoubtably will refuse to adapt to the new situation and, at best, will eventually become a new impoverished underclass entirely dependent on the state, and as many here have said there’s nothing we personally can do for them. But the others who are just late in "waking up" will start looking around for ways to adapt to the changing situation, and I think most will realize that the solutions won’t be as easy as asking for handouts. I think we’ll be of great help just by being good examples, and for the most part won’t require much more of us than answering some questions and giving pointers as they struggle to catch up and adapt. There will undoubtably be some looking for handouts or to take advantage, but we’ll have to resign ourselves to practicing ‘tough love’ and tell them no and to provide for themselves. And for some of us there may be more extreme examples of those taking by force, and it’s worth preparing for that… but at least it’s much more likely that will consist of burglars and thieves stealing chickens or siphoning gas, not ‘the horde at the gates’