“Bye Bye America” – Part 2

You can’t, with any hope of retaining much in the way of credibility, say on one day “Bye Bye America” – a story of societal collapse – and on the very next day say “Is America Really Collapsing?” – another story of societal collapse with a note of hope at the end.  Yet this is exactly what Umair Hague has done in his follow-up piece on Medium.

He outlines in some detail just what, or some of what, societal collapse means, defining it as “a process of going from function through dysfunction to malfunction, a journey, in other words from one system state to a higher entropic state. An intrinsically one-way process – you can’t unscramble an egg.

Having then outlined four ways that America is in collapse, namely: Political Collapse, Social Collapse, Economic Collapse and Eudaimonic Collapse (you’ll need to read the article) – and this is not by any means an exhaustive list of the possible ways in which a society can fall apart – Hague then goes on to talk about the generally accepted view that a collapse is in essence ‘unstoppable’ as not applying, or – “is not the case with societies”.

What is it with doom-writers not being able to face up to the inevitability of what they clearly see coming up for sections of humanity?  They never seem to be able to abandon hope and think clearly on what to actually do in the aftermath of the events of which they tell.  Always looking around for any tiny speck of hope.  It’s nuts …and facing reality takes courage, not to mention – some sort of plan.  But not a plan which merely hopes to stop the unstoppable in its tracks and back it up to some earlier point in its prior path, based entirely on the good will and enthusiasm of the very people who set the unstoppable train of events in motion in the first place.   Such a plan could aptly be described as ‘pure folly’, whether applied at the purely personal or at a local, national or truly global level.

Now, just a final point.  I was thinking of, or trying to come up with a precedent for the type of social recovery (the ‘minor miracles’ he spoke of previously) of which Hague and other writers are so keen to have us believe.  One might think of post-war Germany or Japan as examples of such, arising from the utter destruction of that time to become major societal economies in the modern world.  However, the ruination of those particular nations in the middle of last century was not specifically or directly a result of societal collapse, moral, social, political or any other -wise.  The destruction of those nations was in each case not as a result of a decay of the central core of the nation, its peoples – those remained essentially, morally, spiritually, etc., intact throughout the ordeal of the forced collapse of their material and economic national structures through acts of war.  Two things then were central to their phoenix-like rise from the ashes.  Firstly the central core of national pride, the people themselves, and secondly they could call on the developing availability of world resources which came fully into prominence, profligate prominence from that time until today.  It was entirely a point-in-time thing, employed alike by many nations around the world to rebuild themselves at the same time.  The likes of which had never been seen before and sadly, after less than a century of complete and obscene global madness during which the world ‘partied’ in a once only orgy of digging things up and using them, it will never serve as an option for humanity to enjoy again.  At least on the same scale – the scale of rebuilding nations into any form of structure we would today recognise as being the equivalent of modern society.

So, there we have it, believe it or not, won’t make any difference.  Undoing collapse today can never return us to any resemblance of yesterday. There is no point starting something you can’t finish.

Someone should tell that to Donald Trump …and all other national leaders who continue to seek the elusive ephemera of ‘economic growth’ or ‘growth and jobs’ or simply ‘jobs, jobs, jobs’.

America is on the way down.  Basically, we are all on the way down.  The West, being for so long standing on the upper rungs of the ladder, will feel it the hardest when there are no more ladders to climb over the shoulders of other people.  A level playing field should look the same to everybody.

 

 

A Little Q & A

Which country is the world’s largest oil producer?  Saudi Arabia.

Which country does every other country, including the US, rely on for the oil to keep the engine of economic growth chugging along Saudi Arabia.

Which country is responsible for keeping the price of oil down at or below the cost of production for the last few years?  Saudi Arabia.

Which country’s oil exports have been declining by 1.4% every year for the last decade because it needs constantly more oil for its own domestic consumption?  Saudi Arabia.

Which country’s cash reserves have been falling by $12 billion a month in the past year which means they will soon have reserves too low to any longer be an attractive investment?  Saudi Arabia.

Which country will be unable to export any oil sometime in the next 15 years?  Saudi Arabia

Which country will soon be in the grip of its very own civil uprising?  Saudi Arabia.

Which country(s) will also very soon experience their very own rapid economic decline because of all of the above?  Every country.

Is that clear?  Seems clear to me.

Are you ready?  That one is not for me to answer.

This post inspired by: The collapse of Saudi Arabia is inevitable

See also: Saudi Arabia has withdrawn as much as $70 billion from global markets to plug its budget deficit

System Thinking and the Informal Vote

George Monbiot, an author, political commentator and a columnist for The Guardian UK, occasionally gets things right and I have to agree with much of what he says in this article presented by the Permaculture Research Institute Australia.

I felt I should comment on his piece by relating why I voted informally (mostly due to lack of ethical choice) at the recent Australian Federal Election and you can read that in the article’s comment section. My action drew some criticism from some who questioned why I hadn’t at least voted Green. I felt that I had to reply to these criticisms with some further clarification and I repeat what I said in my second comment here:

I didn’t intend to reply to any comments referring to my previous comment but I suppose I shall have to now in order to clarify my opinion.

1. If I were to vote in the election, that would imply that I support the current system, which I don’t, because it is leading us down the wrong path and operates only in the interests of the system. The system depends on our complicit support and, without that, it would die.

2. If I vote, it doesn’t really matter who I vote for since political power and government is a meaningless facade to give the illusion that ‘free’ people really do have choices.

3. Ethics and politics just don’t go together. There are no truly ethical political parties, and yes, I have in the past supported the Greens.

4. Any party that advocates continued economic growth and prosperity (debt) as opposed to de-growth and simplicity does not possess the sort of vision that is needed to rightly direct the course of nations or the world.

5. Central government has not served us well and in fact only became necessary as society became ever more complex and the powerful realised that they would need some way of controlling the populace by blinding them with the illusion of liberty and happiness while indebting them to the system and extracting from them the ability to accumulate real wealth (not debt-based) and with it the power to direct their lives in ways that might be truly meaningful or to become rebellious. We need to see that we are trapped in, and to escape from, that snare.

6. The only government that is truly necessary should exist at the local community level and should exist solely to help organise the community resources, not suck those resources out of the community. This is the situation we are going to end up with no matter what happens in the future, if we end up with any sort of society at all, so this is where we should concentrate our efforts. We can no longer afford to support central government at any level from city through state, national and regional to the whole world.

That is why I cast an informal vote.

To the end of that last sentence I would subsequently add “…and will continue to do so until such time as the system is replaced, collapses or self-implodes, or I am rendered incapable of exercising freedom of choice on this material plane, whichever should come first.

Finally, just a note on the history of informal voting in Australia.  In recent times, informal voting went from a low of 3% of votes cast in 1993, increasing every election to 5.55% in 2010 except for a slight dip in 2007.  In the 2013 election, as yet unofficial figures put it at around 6% of votes.  I think it could be argued that as time goes by, more and more people are becoming disaffected by the process and outcomes of Australian democracy and this is also borne (yes, that is correct spelling) out by the number of people, especially the young, who do not register as voters even though entitled to do so. The number of unregistered voters currently stands at around 1.5 million as I understand it, or around 10% of possible voters.  It will be interesting to see how both of these trends progress into the future.