Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: Structuring Prosperity for Yourself and the Nation

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Alex Szczech's picture
Alex Szczech
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Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: Structuring Prosperity for Yourself and the Nation

Is anyone familiar with Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: Structuring Prosperity for Yourself and the Nation? He details many of the topics covered in the Crash Course -- peak oil, resource depletion, financial insolvancy (national + personal). He has posted a free abridged version of the book on his website: http://www.oftwominds.com/Survival/survival-plus-free.html

Highly recommended.

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Re: Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: ...

Alex,

     Thanks for posting this. I'm familiar with the author, but not this work. I skimmed over it, and it looks like a keeper - beautifully written. I'll be reading this tonight.

Thanks, Mike

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Re: Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: ...

Thanks Alex, this looks interesting. I read his blog occasionally, but I missed this. Here is a small clip from the cited work that I like:

When Consumerist Gods Fail

It is important to recall the context of the current Depression: the U.S. has consumed trillions of dollars of goods and commodities in exchange for rapidly depreciating paper. Once credit/debt cannot be created exponentially, then consumption will fall in line with surplus production.

The marketing/advertising complex will still be flooding every nook and cranny of the nation and its media with messages to consume, but if few have surplus money and credit then it follows that few will have the means to buy, regardless of the persuasiveness of the millions of messages.

Thus it is not that the false god of consumerism will be toppled but that it will be abandoned--in many cases, most sorrowfully--by believers and adherents who no longer possess the surplus cash to offer the consumerist god.

The key factor in a consumerist-based identity is that someone profits by selling you an identity, character and sheen of status.

The idea that what you wear, drive, tattoo yourself with, load on your iPod, etc. has zero bearing on anything meaningful about who you are and what you value is subversive sacrilege of the highest order.

If "my stuff" is no longer "me," then who and what am I? And indeed, what can I sell you if all you really need to be "yourself" and happy is friends, minimal shelter, unprocessed food, homemade music, a library and an Internet connection and spiritual communion/worship? How much profit can I make selling you a used guitar, a DSL connection and a bag of carrots?

It boils down to this: when you run out of money, you switch religions from Consumerism to one of the good old spiritual standbys.

The known sources of happiness require little to no consumption:

1. health

2. friends

3. free time to pursue interests

4. spiritual communion/worship

5. exercise/sports/play

6. gardening

7. meaningful work (unpaid qualifies)

The experience of well-being has been so derealized that the sense of deprivation experienced at the loss of fine dining, Caribbean cruises, season tickets to the games, etc. is itself suspect.

We might even speculate that the experience of genuine happiness and well-being has largely been forgotten, or perhaps is an unknown sensation to media-numbed "consumers."

Since sustaining the simulacrum of consumerist "happiness" will cause much misery as the consumerist economy slides to oblivion, we might profitably ask if the happier choice wouldn't be to jettison the entire artifice of consumerist "happiness." Upon reflection, it was never real happiness after all; it was only a means to reap immense profits. 

 

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Re: Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: ...
JAG wrote:

Thanks Alex, this looks interesting. I read his blog occasionally, but I missed this. Here is a small clip from the cited work that I like:

Since sustaining the simulacrum of consumerist "happiness" will cause much misery as the consumerist economy slides to oblivion, we might profitably ask if the happier choice wouldn't be to jettison the entire artifice of consumerist "happiness." Upon reflection, it was never real happiness after all; it was only a means to reap immense profits. 

Mmm.  Noice.  Excellent thoughts post-Turkey-feastage and on the day of the Black (Friday) Blitzkrieg.  Gonna haveta peruse this (soon as I finish "The Fourth Turning"...which is also most excellent).

Viva -- Sager

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The 4th Turning
SagerXX wrote:

Gonna haveta peruse this (soon as I finish "The Fourth Turning"...which is also most excellent).

Sager, you and I must be on the same wavelength. I'm listening to "The Fourth Turning" audiobook right now. Pretty amazing take on all things generational in nature, though I'm still in the 3rd Turning section of the work. Its a little hard to follow in the audiobook format. Can you breakdown the generation titles for me? I think they go something like this:

  1. G.I.
  2. Silent
  3. Boomer
  4. Thirteen

Its very confusing, can you help clarify?

Thanks in advanced...Jeff

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Re: The 4th Turning
JAG wrote:
SagerXX wrote:

Gonna haveta peruse this (soon as I finish "The Fourth Turning"...which is also most excellent).

Sager, you and I must be on the same wavelength. I'm listening to "The Fourth Turning" audiobook right now. Pretty amazing take on all things generational in nature, though I'm still in the 3rd Turning section of the work. Its a little hard to follow in the audiobook format. Can you breakdown the generation titles for me? I think they go something like this:

  1. G.I.
  2. Silent
  3. Boomer
  4. Thirteen

Its very confusing, can you help clarify?

Thanks in advanced...Jeff

Oh, man.  I'm up to about page 70.  They're discussing cycles as a concept (not bikes, mind you, but recurring phenomena).  Best I can recall (from the very brief overview they give early on), it's:

Boomer
Gen X
Millenial
13 (as in the thirteenth generation since the founding of our country)...

But I can't recall precisely (been away from the book for a coupla days).  About to re-acquaint meself before going na-na tonight.  Ehrm...which is to say, before I sleep.  Let's discuss as we go, shall we?

Viva -- Sager

 

 

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Re: Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: ...

I've been following CHS's blog for more than a year now.  It's one of the few that I have in my RSS reader, including this one, The Automatic Earth, and Mish's blog.

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Re: Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: ...

Saw this thread yesterday evening...

Skimmed through the book. Hmm, interesting..... started reading...

It's noon EST now, and I am on chapter 14.

One of the BEST reads -- please don't take this as meaningless hyperbolic praise --- I have EVER read in my 43+ years of living

on this Earth.

Who is this guy? Where did he come from? And why, pray tell, are not MORE people aware of him? Holy cow. The cognitive dissonance, confusion, lack of coherency in understanding our socially interactive surroundings.... all clarified...I have downloaded the PDF, ordered the full copy (the other 160 pages) and shall STUDY this tome intensively. This book will never gross $100K (the full version), and the most beautiful part of it is that the author doesn't care. He relies on donations to keep things going.

You reach your own conclusions from the book's unfolding. That's the best part.

Pete's Book review rating. 5/5 stars.

2nd best part: It's free. The best part? Well, read it.

 

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Re: The 4th Turning
SagerXX wrote:
JAG wrote:
SagerXX wrote:

Gonna haveta peruse this (soon as I finish "The Fourth Turning"...which is also most excellent).

Sager, you and I must be on the same wavelength. I'm listening to "The Fourth Turning" audiobook right now. Pretty amazing take on all things generational in nature, though I'm still in the 3rd Turning section of the work. Its a little hard to follow in the audiobook format. Can you breakdown the generation titles for me? I think they go something like this:

  1. G.I.
  2. Silent
  3. Boomer
  4. Thirteen

Its very confusing, can you help clarify?

Thanks in advanced...Jeff

Oh, man.  I'm up to about page 70.  They're discussing cycles as a concept (not bikes, mind you, but recurring phenomena).  Best I can recall (from the very brief overview they give early on), it's:

Boomer
Gen X
Millenial
13 (as in the thirteenth generation since the founding of our country)...

But I can't recall precisely (been away from the book for a coupla days).  About to re-acquaint meself before going na-na tonight.  Ehrm...which is to say, before I sleep.  Let's discuss as we go, shall we?

Viva -- Sager

 

 

The author of the book that this thread is about quotes The Fourth Turning multiple times in his work.

Sager, Jeff. I can't pimp this work enough. It's that good.

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Re: The 4th Turning
Morpheus wrote:
SagerXX wrote:

Oh, man.  I'm up to about page 70.  They're discussing cycles as a concept (not bikes, mind you, but recurring phenomena).  Best I can recall (from the very brief overview they give early on), it's:

Boomer
Gen X
Millenial
13 (as in the thirteenth generation since the founding of our country)...

The author of the book that this thread is about quotes The Fourth Turning multiple times in his work.

Sager, Jeff. I can't pimp this work enough. It's that good.

Two things: 

A -- my list up above was incorrect.  JAG had it right.  I'm pushing near on to page 100 (after staying up late last night to read).

B -- If the MorphMan is pimpin' then I'd better get this other book.  (scurrying off to d/l the .pdf)...

Viva -- Sager

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Re: The 4th Turning
SagerXX wrote:
JAG wrote:
SagerXX wrote:

Gonna haveta peruse this (soon as I finish "The Fourth Turning"...which is also most excellent).

Sager, you and I must be on the same wavelength. I'm listening to "The Fourth Turning" audiobook right now. Pretty amazing take on all things generational in nature, though I'm still in the 3rd Turning section of the work. Its a little hard to follow in the audiobook format. Can you breakdown the generation titles for me? I think they go something like this:

  1. G.I.
  2. Silent
  3. Boomer
  4. Thirteen

Its very confusing, can you help clarify?

Thanks in advanced...Jeff

Oh, man.  I'm up to about page 70.  They're discussing cycles as a concept (not bikes, mind you, but recurring phenomena).  Best I can recall (from the very brief overview they give early on), it's:

Boomer
Gen X
Millenial
13 (as in the thirteenth generation since the founding of our country)...

But I can't recall precisely (been away from the book for a coupla days).  About to re-acquaint meself before going na-na tonight.  Ehrm...which is to say, before I sleep.  Let's discuss as we go, shall we?

Viva -- Sager

 

 

I'm also reading this at the moment and am finding it an excellent read.

Here's where we are this Saeculum:

Prophet: Boom Generation 1943-1960
Nomad: Gen X or 13th Generation 1961-1981
Hero: Millennial Generation 1982-??
Artist yet to be born

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Re: Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: ...

Just bought The Fourth Turning, on Amazon.

Thanks for the tip guys. Anymore?

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Re: Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: ...

A recent interview with Charles Hugh Smith in which he elaborates on the concepts presented in the book: http://www.dangerousminds.net/index.php/site/comments/charles_hugh_smith_surviving_the_next_20_years/ 

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Re: Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: ...

 Related to the themes of Survival+  but more compact

 A great article by Cathy McMahon on energybulletin.net ,   26 things you can do...

 I've done quite a few already.. for example making foods from basic ingredients.

 Last week I managed to make soup from scratch (I'm a cooking noob... *blush*)  - can't believe how well it turned out !

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Re: Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: ...
plato1965 wrote:

 I've done quite a few already.. for example making foods from basic ingredients.

+! Plato,

I've been busting my rump lately learning how to cook from my bulk pantry ("old school"). So far so good.

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Re: Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: ...

Alex:

A recent interview with Charles Hugh Smith in which he elaborates on the concepts presented in the book: http://www.dangerousminds.net/index.php/site/comments/charles_hugh_smith_surviving_the_next_20_years/

Alex, Thanks for the vid. Nice to see him speaking in person. He must live down in the Phoenix (AZ) area since he talked of the Fountainhills get-together and their strangley out-of-place man-made fountain which shoots a plume of water 560ft into the sky:

Nothing like Dubai, but still unsustainable.

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Re: Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: ...

 Be ready for the fact that people will think you are different . ( We ARE )  

  Children and Adults are still social beings  ,you will need to try to find some people with  a similar lifestyle.   Especially pre-teens and teenagers, they  will have struggles with being labeled weird .   You will need to strengthen your own family unity to withstand the differences.    Think of your friends now. ....how many meals do they eat at home?  How many  have game nights or family evenings at home working and playing together ?   

   Our circle of friends  do plan special evenings where  we all come together and  the children play their instruments ,sing, or act out little dramas for us then we have snack or meal( everyone has to eat ) and  then the adults talk while the kids play simple games like Capture the flag .    What I am telling you is that you do not have to spend a fortune on entertainment , tennis lessons,running to every sport event , and such . The kids as well as adults so much enjoy a simple evening together .

 We also have moms night out once in a while  . Here we can talk of things we are struggling with , organizational things ,child discipline ,( you know solving the problems of our little world .)  Dads don't seam to need the evening out so much as they need a quiet one in .   We at our house try to keep the noise down to a dull roar when dad comes home so he can leave the stress of the world behind , we do not hit him with all the problems first thing in the door .

 Last night we all had refresher of loading and firing the guns .  Again probably not something the kids would want to go to school and share . But if your small group of close friends are of like mind it is ok for the ten year old boys to discuss hunting and trapping at the gatherings.  How many 16 year old girls can say they are excellent marksmen and sit in a tree stand at the crack of dawn ?  See  again where the importance of like minded fellowship comes in .   You will need social activities and your children definitely will because they are not secure in who they are or who they will become .

 I hope this comes across to make a little sense .  The back to the basic simpler lifestyle is a big adjustment .   You will come up against some resistance and there is much to consider and plan for .   Some wives at first  will bulk at making their own soap ,and teens will have a royal fit about using cheap shampoo that you have watered down .    So save the expensive bottles and they will not know for a while and you can give them time to adjust slowly so no one goes into shock .  We are just selfish / self-centered people that do not want to have to give up anything . But you will see  making simpler choices now will help in the long haul .

 Well here I go on and on and many of you are not even ready to make these changes .   If you are so lead start with just a couple small changes at a time.

 Everyone is different  some of us can only see trying to protect our own families and the tiny part of the world in which we live.  Even dreaming of the huge changes that need to be done are beyond us.   But maybe just a few families at a time ??  I am finding you do not have to go find people .. they come find you .   You will be different  and they are either ready to join or they are not .  But do see the advantages of having a support group .

 

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Re: Essential reading -- Charles Hugh Smith's Survival +: ...

... following the thread!!!

Best,

Paul

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