Monthly Archives: August 2011

No fun.

Well, congress voted and passed that deficit thing. I guess we don’t all get to enjoy the coming econopocalypse any time soon or soon enough. I was more than a little looking forward to it. Not that I’m ready for it, but then I’ve decided that there’s no such thing as ready for it.

I’ve been thinking, and yes this is on-topic for this blarg, about the coming civilizational failure. What form will it take? How long will it take once it’s begun? I looked back in my head a few short centuries ago to France and Spain after the fall of Rome for an example. There haven’t been too many Western societies that have really fallen apart in quite the same way so this is the only example I could find.

The Roman empire didn’t fall apart in one day. It rather trickled apart, piece by agonising piece, one little bit at a time, over the course of a couple of centuries. There never was any date you could definitively point to and say,¬† “this is the day that Rome fell.” It lost out one village at a time, one person at a time, one opinion at a time. It likely took decades for some people to realize that Rome just wasn’t Rome anymore, and that the Roman way of doing things was, well, still there. People didn’t wake up one day and say “hey guys, have you noticed that we aren’t Roman citizens anymore?” No, they went on about their business as usual for generations. Then business as usual gradually changed to not include Rome anymore.

Is that the way it’s going to be for us, too? Are we collapsniks planning for a future event that’s just not going to happen? Or rather, it’ll happen, but are we preparing for an event that’s going to putter along so slowly that it’s just not going to bring any satisfaction to anyone whatsoever? What’s different about us that we can do in one day what took the Roman empire a couple of centuries to accomplish, namely, to fall apart? Is oil and the lack of it going to do us in? Will we find a substitute in time before the world’s affordable oil reserves are used up? (Note that “affordable” is the operative word). Are we going to run out of money or will there be a revolution? I think nah on the revolution, there are too many people doing just barely well enough to keep that from going down… and besides, American culture is just too damned complacent to really get angry about anything not spelled out with crayons on the nightly news.

So. There. I think the worst-case collapse scenario is what’s going down. It’s gonna happen like Rome – too damned slow to be worth talking about at the time.

That means that there won’t be a free-for-all of exploration amongst the survivors to find the way of living that works best for them. We’ll all be thinking that everything’s fine and dandy and that things are just the way they are and that it’s useless to resist the status quo and that the way things sit now is the way they’re supposed to be and any deviation from it must be somehow antisocial and destructive.

But maybe I’m just angry. I dunno. Doesn’t matter.

I know I don’t have too many readers. But still I wonder if I’m not the only person out there longing to get out from in front of the computer and out into the real world. I know that the only way to do it is to do it, but I wonder if the best way to help the coming collapse along is to be a pioneer of it? Do like the hippies and drop out?Anyone who has done this before in history either¬† didn’t leave much behind, or if they did, we no longer have any record of it. It would be nice to have a guide.

Oh can we, please?


Could I assume I’m not the only one disappointed by this? Not only did the US not default, it set itself up for business as usual through 2013. I can’t be the only person who was genuinely looking forward to the impending collapse. I was feeling like a spectator in the Restaurant at the End of the Universe, watching the show from the edge, and rather hoping that we’d all go over so I could let go of the rails, lift my arms to the sky and yell “WWHHHEEE!!!!”

Perhaps I’ve become a tad cynical about the system that anyone reading this will find themselves born into. Perhaps. The first few months of a collapse would suck, but the rest – that might have been a different story. I say “might have been” because now we don’t get to take the ride over that edge. At least not now.

I have the feeling that the US running out of money would somehow make my inability to get financially ahead OK. Maybe I’m wrong on that, but my aversion to the capitalist dance is making me more and more nauseous as I get older. I’ve been increasingly drawn to gifting, simplification, and mutual support, as in a tribe.

Therefore I must care because this news means I don’t get to try it.