How Do You Know When Your Society Is In The Midst Of Collapse?

As economic turmoil worldwide becomes increasingly apparent, I have been receiving messages from readers expressing some concerns on the public “perception” of collapse. That is to say, there are questions on the average person’s concept of collapse versus the reality of collapse. This is a vital issue that I have discussed briefly in the past, but it deserves a more in-depth analysis.

What is collapse? How do we define it? And, are some of the notions of collapse in the public consciousness completely wrong?

It’s funny, because skeptics opposed to the idea of a U.S. collapse in particular will most often retort with a question they think I cannot or will not answer – “So, Mr. Smith, when specifically is this supposed collapse going to take place? What day and time?”

My response has always been – “We’re in the middle of a collapse right now; you really can’t see it right in front of your sneering face?”

The reason these people are incapable of grasping this kind of answer is in large part due to the popular mainstream conceptions of systemic collapse. These are conceptions that are for the most part delusional and not in line with the facts. The public idea of collapse comes predominantly from Hollywood, and not from personal experience. For the masses (and some preppers, unfortunately), a collapse is an “event” that happens visibly and usually swiftly. You wake up one morning and behold; the television and phones don’t work anymore and zombies are at your doorstep! Yes, it’s childish and cartoonish, but anything less than a Walking Dead/Mad Max scenario and many people act as if all other threats are benign.

This is the driving reason why many Americans are absolutely oblivious to the economic instability that is rampant and blatant within our system the past few months. They might see the same signals that alternative analysts see, but these signals do not register in their brains as dangers.

Look at it this way; say you told a person their whole life that a tiger is a 10-foot tall behemoth with four heads that breath fire while urinating flesh-rending acid. Say you make movies and TV shows about it and they never have any experience to the contrary. When they finally come across a real tiger, they might try to pet the damn thing instead of running in terror or searching for a means of defense.

To use another vicious animal analogy, when I encounter skeptics with false assumptions of what a collapse actually is, I am often reminded of that woman in Anchorage, Alaska who jumped an enclosure fence at the zoo to get a closer picture of Binky the polar bear. These people have been made so inept when it comes to identifying threats that they will continue arguing with you as the animal takes a football-sized bite out of their meaty thigh.

So what is the root of the problem beyond Hollywood fantasies? Well, the problem is that social and economic collapse is not a singular event, it is a PROCESS. Collapse is a series of events that sometimes span years. Each event increases in volatility over the last event, but as time goes on these events tend to condition the masses. The public develops a normalcy bias towards crisis (like the old “frog in a boiling pot” analogy). They lose all sense of what a healthy system looks like.

It is not uncommon for a society to wade through almost a decade or more of violent decline before finally acknowledging the system is imploding on a fundamental level. It is also not uncommon for societies to endure years of abuse by corrupt governments before either organizing effectively to rebel, or caving in and submitting to totalitarianism.

But how does one recognize a failing system? How does a person know if they are in the middle of a collapse rather than on the “verge” of collapse? Here are some signals I have derived from research of various breakdowns in modern nations and why they indicate we are experiencing collapse right now…

The Criminals Openly Admit To Their Crimes

The surest way to know if your society is in the midst of disintegration is to see if the criminals who created the instability in the first place are openly discussing a collapse scenario or warning that one is imminent.

A year ago, central bankers presented little more than a chorus of recovery propaganda. Today, not so much. The Royal Bank of Scotland is now warning investors to “sell everything” ahead of a “cataclysmic” year in markets.

The Federal Reserve’s Richard Fisher has admitted that the Fed “frontloaded” (manipulated) stock markets into a bubble and that payment is about to come due in the form of severe economic volatility (up to 20% crash in equities).

The Bank for International Settlements, the central bank of central banks, has a track record of warning the public about collapse conditions – right before they happen, leaving little or no time for people to prepare. They have followed their habit by warning in September and December that a Fed rate hike would “shatter” the uneasy calm in markets.

The former Chief Economist of the BIS now says the economy is in worse shape than it was in 2008 and is headed for a larger fall.

What happened between last year and this year and why are these internationalists suddenly so forthcoming about our economic reality? The fact that central bankers are the cause of our current collapse leads me to believe that such admissions are designed to deflect guilt. If they put out a few warnings now, they can then later claim they are prognosticators rather than culprits, and that they were trying to “help us.” Beyond that, the reality is that our situation was just as dire in 2014/2015 as it is today; the difference is that now we are about to enter a new phase in the ongoing collapse, a much more detrimental phase, but still a phase of a breakdown that has been progressing since at least 2008.

The Fundamentals Break Through The Manipulation Barrier

Governments and central banks do not have the capacity to artificially create demand for goods or a supply of well-paying jobs in a crashing economy. What they can do, though, is hide the visible problems in supply and demand with false numbers.

I examined such false economic statistics in great detail last year in a six-part series titled “One Last Look At The Real Economy Before It Implodes.” I will not cover them all again here. I would only point out that recently the fundamentals of supply and demand have begun to break through the deceit of manipulated numbers, and this is a sign that the collapse is about to move from one stage to the next.

With global shipping and trucking freight in steep decline, with retail inventories in stasis and current oil consumption falling to levels not seen since 1997 despite a larger population, the mainstream can no longer deny that consumer demand is crumbling. If demand is falling dramatically, then the financial system is in the middle of falling dramatically; there is simply no way around this truth.

Stocks And Commodities Become Violently Erratic

Let's be clear, if stock markets represent anything at all, they are merely lagging indicators of economic instability.  Stock markets are NOT predictive indicators of anything useful.  Therefore, any person who does nothing but track equities each day is going to be completely oblivious to the bigger picture behind the economy until it is too late.  They will be so mesmerized by the green numbers and red numbers and lines on minute-to-minute graphs that they will lose all sense of reality.

Violent swings in stocks are a sign of a financial system that is at the middle or end of the collapse process, not the beginning.

It is also important to note that extreme shifts in stocks and commodity values to the upside are just as much a signal of instability as shifts to the downside.  For instance, if you witnessed the recent 9% explosion in oil markets and thought to yourself "Ah, the markets are being stabilized again and nothing is different this time...", then you are an idiot.

Of course, the next day oil markets lost almost all of the gains they made the day before.  And this is how markets behave when they are about to die; they expand and implode chaotically each day on nothing more that meaningless news headlines rather than hard data.  This heart attack in equities inevitably trends downwards as the weeks and months pass.  Keep in mind, equities are down nearly 10% from their recent highs, and oil is down approximately 50% in the past six months.  Every time there is a dead cat bounce in stocks skeptics come out of the woodwork to call alternative analysts "doomers", yet they are nowhere to be found when markets come crashing back down.  They are not looking at the overall trend because their short attention spans hinder them.  Again, extreme swings in markets, whether up or down, are a sign of progressing collapse.

Deterioration Of Cultural Values, Heritage And Identity

I have written extensively over the years about the Cloward-Piven strategy; a strategy used by collectivists to destabilize social systems by dumping overt numbers of foreign immigrants into the population without demand for integration. This process has been obvious in the U.S. and Europe for quite some time, but only now is it peaking to the point that collapse is seen as an inevitable result by the public. Europe is worse off than the U.S. in this regard as millions upon millions of Muslim immigrants are injected into the EU’s already dying body; immigrants that intend to transplant their culture from their own failed societies rather than adopting the values and principles of the societies that have invited them in.

Natural-born Americans and legal immigrants with aspiration of integration appear to be fighting back against the Cloward-Piven strategy with some success by holding onto traditional American values despite being labeled “barbarians” and “racists.” Illegal immigration, though, is still completely unchecked.

In the EU, the long campaign of cultural Marxism has made natural-born Europeans perhaps the most self-hating people on the planet as well as the most passive and weak. Organized opposition to massive immigration programs in the EU should have taken place years ago. Now it is far too late, and the European system is finishing a social implosion which should have already been obvious to average citizens.

Open Discussion Of Totalitarian Measures

When corrupt leadership moves from quiet totalitarianism to more open totalitarianism, your society is in the FINAL stages of collapse, not the beginning of a collapse. The U.S. in particular has been slowly strangled with subversive legal directives and political policies ever since the so called “War on Terror” began. However, there are now multiple signals of a much deeper and open tyranny in the works.

A few recent examples stand out, including Barack Obama’s insistence that the office of the president has the legal authority to issues executive orders that affect constitutional protections such as the 2nd Amendment. As many liberty movement activists are aware, there is absolutely no constitutional precedent for the use of executive orders and such powers are not mentioned anywhere in the document. They were simply created out of thin air to be used by the federal government and sometimes state governments to supersede normal checks and balances.

While numerous presidents have issued executive orders, including some that were outright tyrannical, like Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s unconstitutional internment of Japanese Americans into concentration camps, George W. Bush and Barack Obama have been the most subversive in their bypassing of the Constitution. Obama, in particular, has tried to hide the number of executive actions he has taken by issuing hundreds of “presidential memorandums,” which are basically the same dirty play by another name.

These actions have been progressively setting the stage for the removal of checks and balances entirely in the name of crisis management. They are so broad in their nature and vague in their definitions and applications that they could be interpreted by federal authorities to mean just about anything in any given situation.

If executive actions are not scary enough, corrupt politicians are now becoming blunt in their demands for dominance. Two Republican Senators, Mitch McConnel and Lindsay Graham, are calling for unlimited AUMF-style (authorization of use of military force) war powers to be given to the president. Such powers would allow the president to project U.S. military forces anywhere in the world for any reason without review or time limits. This includes the use of military forces on U.S. soil.

The rationale for this is, of course, the threat of ISIS. The same group of terrorists the U.S. government helped to create.

And finally, if you want perhaps the most nonchalant admission of future tyranny in recent days, check out former General Wesley Clark’s call for “disloyal” Americans to be placed in internment camps through the duration of the war on terror, a war that could ostensibly go on forever.

One could argue that all of these measures are meant only to deter “Islamic extremism.” I would point out that government officials could have stemmed that tide at any time by enforcing existing immigration laws, or, by stopping all immigration for a period of years until the problem is handled. Instead, they have allowed open borders to remain, and have even imported potential terrorists while focusing Department of Homeland Security efforts more on evil white guys with guns.

If we accept the violation of the constitutional rights of any group of citizens, if we allow the concept of "thought crime" to become commonplace, then we leave the door open to the violation of our own rights someday. And that is how tyrants trick populations through incremental collapse; by applying despotism to a claimed dangerous minority, then expanding it to everyone else.

America is sitting near the end of the spectrum in terms of economic collapse and in the middle of the spectrum in terms of social collapse.  While more violent events are certainly gestating and are likely to be triggered in the near term, we should not overlook the reality that collapse is happening in stages all around us.  This process gives us at least some time.  All is not lost yet, and the steps we take to organize and prepare today will affect how the collapse process unfolds tomorrow. People who continue to ignore the outright evidence of collapse based on false assumptions of what collapse should look like are only preventing themselves from taking proper action until it is too late. Make no mistake, our system is dying. We cannot allow our false perceptions of this death to cloud the reality of it, or our response to it.

 

 

 

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0
What else can one say...
written by shutupnsing , January 27, 2016

E for Excellent!
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You are right. Collapse has been all around us for years!
written by David Haggith , January 27, 2016

We crashed to a global economic collapse in 2007 (and finally all knew it mid-2008), but people feel we escaped from it because of trillions of dollars of free money given to banksters to raise the stock market. It's amazing what anesthesia you can provide to the suffering when you have the power to create TRILLIONS of dollars out of thin air.

As a result, people haven't experienced the suffering the Great Recession would have already brought to us, but what they are blind to is that the anesthesia wears off when the free money wears out, and the free money couldn't be sustained forever. Since it was unsustainable and is only effective as long as it continues and since no other measures were taken while we had the benefit of that anesthesia, we are now sinking back into the deep belly of the Great Recession as great money-printing experiment slowly unwinds. The pain will be greater than it would have been if we had taken advantage of the last seven years to right our wrongs; but we did no such thing. We kept walking on two broken legs because we could feel no pain.

That's why it was so predictable that people would start to see the collapse as soon as the Fed dropped it's remaining free-money program. Now we are entering the Great Unwind of that pseudo economy -- the second dip of the Great Recession.

What's amazing is to see who Americans are so easily giving up their constitutional rights and to see how the banksters who created this mess did far more than get away with destroying all the economies of the world through their greed. They were publicly rewarded with vastly greater wealth than they had prior to the Great Recession.

--David Haggith
http://TheGreatRecession.info

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That pretty much sums it all up
written by Frequent Reader , January 27, 2016

Excellent article as always
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Here for the truth
written by Diane D , January 27, 2016

Brandon tells it like it is.

If 100% of all Americans were asked to read this article:
10% can't read.
79% would have no comprehension of what is written.
10% would understand but take ZERO ACTION to prepare to protect themselves and their loved ones. Shame on parents of young children. Also this group includes most folks who identify themselves with the liberty movement. Talk is cheap.
1% would understand and take action accordingly.

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'Collapse' Readings
written by Steve Bull , January 27, 2016

I have been 'studying' the idea of collapse for the past few years. History shows that every civilisation/society reaches a peak of some kind and then 'collapses' (and 'collapse' need not be sudden and can be a slow but persistent decline in numerous facets of sociopolitical and sociocultural complexity).

While normalcy bias and denial play a large role in most people acknowledging a society's decline, some of the indicators are recognisable. As Carroll Quiqley states in his book, The Evolution of Civilizations: "The Stage of Decay is a period of acute economic depression, declining standards of living, civil wars between the various vested interests, and growing illiteracy. The society grows weaker and weaker. Vain efforts are made to stop the wastage through legislation. But the decline continues. The religious, intellectual, social, and political levels of the society begin to lose allegiance of the masses of the people on a large scale."

I would suggest the following books for those interested in the topic:
1) The Collapse of Complex Societies, Joseph Tainter
2) Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed, Jarid Diamond
3) The Five Stages of Collapse, Dimitry Orlov
4) The Long Emergency, James Howard Kunstler
5) The Long Descent, John Michael Greer
6) The Evolution of Civilizations, Carroll Quiqley

http://olduvai.ca

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Great Unwind indeed
written by mungo , January 27, 2016

All great upheavals are the destruction of cultures- the way people think and act. The American Ethos (Free thinking, free will, and Christian) is public enemy #1 to the NWO.

Historically America is the last visage of the age of Enlightenment sparked by Reformation - the freeing of the minds of men. The must destroy all facets of the culture that breeds men of morals and free will.

"Ideas are more powerful than guns. We would not let our enemies have guns, why should we let them have ideas?"
Joseph Stalin

It isn't complicated, it is calculated,
& yes, it is by design.

*
Mega Kudos Brandon for the poignant illustration

*

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0
...
written by justanobserver , January 27, 2016

As Brandon says it is right there in front of our collective faces but we do not want to see.

And the illusion of prosperity is all that is needed for enough of the people to make sure they refuse to see.

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getting rid of the media whores in a collapse
written by poisetong , January 27, 2016

if the system collapses the first people to go must be the media elite whores who have been carrying the water for the demoncratic party for a very long time. They support the demon party using various methods of deceit, lies , cheating, falsify data, they make things up just to keep the democratic party a float. these people must be the first to be removed by any means necessary and permanently.
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Brandon Smith
...
written by Brandon Smith , January 27, 2016

@poisetong

Don't forget about all the media whores working for the Republican (Neocon) party, too.

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Nation of brats
written by Charms , January 27, 2016

After coming back from overseas all I see is a nation that's getting ready to get its ass handed to it. Not everyone of course! Apathy is everywhere, I use to wonder why third worlds happened, now I know. This is becoming too much, we (military)all concur and watch this nonsense as if we're watching Idiocracy the movie. Good luck you guys, without logistics collapse is gonna suck.
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silver-gold coin question
written by hoist the bs flag , January 27, 2016

Can anyone give 20th-or 21st century examples of economies that used silver (coins specifically) and/ or gold after an economic collapse? Be it deflationary or hyper-inflationary. How were the coins used? Who excepted them and how were they "valued" in terms of purchasing power and what government responses or reactions happened in relation to the use of them? thanks.
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Brandon Smith
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written by Brandon Smith , January 27, 2016

@bs flag

I believe people used gold and silver coins after the collapse in Argentina from 2001-2002. Though, most people had far more access to jewelry. They bartered PMs throughout the crisis. Gold and silver remained highly valuable.

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0
money
written by helot , January 27, 2016

It depends upon what your definition of 'economies' is. I.e. a black market economy?

While not coins, I read about the use of paper thin sheets of gold used by the locals who fled when Saigon fell at the end of the Vietnam War. The local
s went into the hills of the Hmong where the use of those paper thin sheets of gold had a history of perhaps thousands of years.
I read a fairly in-depth article about it online somewhere, I've since lost the link, and haven't found anything substantial about those times.

I've read a couple of articles online about the use of gold coins after the Soviet Union fell. I didn't keep the links. I seem to recall the coins were used to get food and transportation to safety when no other currency was accepted.

If you search 'FerFal' I'm sure he mentioned the use of gold coins in Argentina after their economic collapse.

And of course there's numerous examples of desperate people digging up and using gold nuggets in Zimbabwe after their recent hyper-inflationary episode. A nugget is just a spherical coin with no markings, isn't it?

I imagine all of those articles are still online, it's just a matter of finding them and the rest of our questions will be answered without me writing a book.

Anyway, why do you ask?

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Presidential "edicts"
written by Beany Boyd , January 27, 2016

Communist and liberals are overrunning the Constitution. They don't like that it prevents them from issuing edicts.

Edicts that bring oppression to the citizens that often bring ruin to a country and drives it to poverty and hardship. There seems to be no political process to an edict. It just comes from the whim of a dictator.

That is why the Constitution forbid edicts from any one person.

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soviets experiences
written by PeterKa , January 28, 2016

http://statelesshomesteading.c...rspective/
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0
...
written by ? , January 28, 2016

Chaos,

If this was a free market economy where inflation, unemployment, and gdp were not massaged to make the filth shit in the white house (or the next one) look good

where silver and gold are crashed by the movement of paper created by wall street (when real demand by state sovereigns and individuals is literally having government mints and smelter operators running as fast as possible to keep up)

where oil busted a move higher last night on the rumor of Russian/Saudi cuts in production and then crashed when that was denied

your nonsense might be worth considering.

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0
...
written by ? , January 28, 2016

Chaos,

And the Russian website is not pulling your chain?

Wow, I did not know that all truth flows from Russia.

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thanks
written by hoist the bs flag , January 28, 2016

@ helot...research purposes. thanks...you too Brandon
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Quick Question
written by jenningsbryan , January 28, 2016

If the central banking establishment announces that an interest rate increase will crash the stock market, why don't people ask them WHY they're raising it? I really don't speak financial-ese at all. But that seems like an obvious question. What is forcing them to raise it despite foreknowledge of the disastrous consequences?


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Brandon Smith
...
written by Brandon Smith , January 28, 2016

@jennings

You would think that would be the obvious question, but then again, mainstream economists have different brains than the rest of us...

I don't know what garbage answer the fed would give the public beyond "recovery", but I can tell you the real answer: The fed is raising rates because they WANT the markets to crash in a controlled manner. This is the only answer that makes sense.

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Amazing authorship
written by Content to compliment , January 29, 2016

The coherence and congruence throughout this piece is amazing. Few people have the ability to make a case so logically and logistically. Plus, tons of citations!

I don't lightly or quickly praise the writing of others. In the present case, your writing, and the weight of its content, deserve Mr. Nobel's krone. Shame about the panel of judges.

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0
Excellent
written by Sad Canuck , January 29, 2016

This is an excellent article. After my last extended stay in the U.S., which was in 2008, whilst in the process of being checked by airport security at the Denver airport, I could clearly see that the U.S. was (still is) in the process of serious changes, none of it good.

What frustrates me, as a Canadian (expat), is that it is obvious to see what is going on with the U.S., but very little people in Canada can see it happening in their own backyard. I wish more Canadians with talent, skill and insight such as yours would write articles like this. I have tried to warn friends and family, but they don't listen. To send them articles line this, I get the, well that's what's happening THERE, not seeing it's happening to Canada, too. I knew Prime Minister Trudeau would become the next leader of Canada when I heard him speak at his father's funeral. I told people, very few believed me, some saw it too. No surprise NDP in Alberta, at same time Trudeau PM. Take down Alberta, and the country goes down with it. Dark days for everyone.

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what do we do?
written by Spirit75 , January 30, 2016

Anyone know what do we do when your neighbors aren't up to speed on these things? I mean it's a whole education u have or don't and can't explain in a simple letter or face to face talk with neighbors(time and you're the crazy neighbor factor) I tried on another issue and went door to door and gave information and a way to respond to over 300 houses around my home. Only 3 people contacted me to know more and get the grievance letter I had written up for utility CEOs, state governor and the county sheriff was cc 'd in. Any suggestions welcome.
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Brandon Smith
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written by Brandon Smith , January 30, 2016

@Spirit

Start with family first. Then find a local liberty activist chapter of some kind, like Oath Keepers. Then try your church if you have one. Then, find ONE neighbor who is philosophically on board if you can. If you try to wake up your whole neighborhood at once, you'll only meet with disappointment.

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Boiled to death
written by TonyRUs , January 30, 2016

Its human nature that we have a point in time beyond which we cannot perceive change, at least, not without close attention and measurements. So, we wake up one day and realize we need a hair cut. Its the RATE of increase in temperature that's the critical factor that boils the frog in the pot. But it helps if the frog is preoccupied with play things and social commitments.

Thanks, Brandon. Your work is highly valued.

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@Brandon
written by Spirit75 , January 30, 2016

Thank you kindly for your time and efforts with this site ( I just learned of it) and your response. I do have one neighbor who is in the know and like minded/concerned. I will follow your suggestions. I do belong to a church and a men's forum. I wrote to oath keepers Ny but got no response, which I understand as they can only do and respond so much.

I've had the inspiration/ idea to walk over to a neighbor who is a deputy sheriff, to introduce myself as a neighbor and concerned father with young children to see sort of what side of the line our county sherif is on. That other neighbor had the same idea and thought to take a walk over in the spring. It's hard to catch him outside as he is not an immediate neighbor. Best thing to do? knock on unannounced or draft a letter and give a heads up that you will be stoping by soon? I'd appreciated and very much welcome your input when u have the time.

cheers!

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2 cents
written by Seen2013 , January 30, 2016

"It’s funny, because skeptics opposed to the idea of a U.S. collapse in particular will most often retort with a question they think I cannot or will not answer – “So, Mr. Smith, when specifically is this supposed collapse going to take place? What day and time?”

My response has always been – “We’re in the middle of a collapse right now; you really can’t see it right in front of your sneering face?”"

Same problem with the path trend to Authoritarianism or otherwise Bismarkian ambition of acquiring Absolute Authority.

'I'll believe it when they're going door to door'

Historically speaking, dictators picks the path of least resistance to build their power-structure's foundation before shifting to open Authoritarianism or Bismarkian Absolute Authority.
To put it bluntly, if the internet isn't working, phones are out, shelves are emptied, and they're going door to door, you're looking at post collapse not collapse.

"Here are some signals I have derived from research of various breakdowns in modern nations and why they indicate we are experiencing collapse right now…"

-When people stop looking for guidance and instead demands answers and solutions, they find people more than eager to supply answers and solutions.
-If you can convince the people, there are two types of people be it born to rule-born to be ruled, master-slave, and etc, and you convince everyone else you are born to rule. What does that leave them?
-Never let a crisis go to waste is promoting instant gratification and answers/solutions.

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Collapse...hardly noticeable.
written by Mr Statically Uncounted... , January 31, 2016

Watch a clock with only a hour hand and you will not see it moving.
Here in USA Abq, NM..
This year a much larger homeless population hardly noticeable.
A lot of new commercial building but most all empty, hardly noticeable.
One see say 5 stores close and one opens up, hardly noticeable.
The groc store the 99 cent sandwich became 2.99, hardly noticeable.
Help wanted signs for low wages but somehow too many applications, hardly noticeable.
More crime and the police too busy to arrest for petty stuff, hardly noticeable.
House prices languishing and competitively lower, hardly noticeable.
Gasoline much lower but prices of goods higher, hardly noticeable.
Higher paying jobs, hundreds of applications, everyone lying on their resume, hardly noticeable.
Few are doing well and showing off their nice cars, hardly noticeable.
We are in a collapse, but hardly noticeable.
Yes the collapse is all around us...hardly noticeable.

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Warning Sign
written by Prognosticator , January 31, 2016

You know your society is in collapse when Walmarts are being emptied out and/or looted.
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My own thoughts on collapse
written by NickelthroweR , February 01, 2016

Greetings,

If I may, I'd like to offer my own analogy towards the topic of collapse. It isn't, as the author posits, a lightswitch where society goes from everything is fine to zombies but a slow process.

A collapse, in my opinion, is analogous to an old car that is no longer "worthy" of being fixed.

At some point in time a car owner may decide that his old car isn't worth the cost of maintenance. Now, you can drive a car such as this for quite some time. The tires may wear, the lifters may knock, the paint may fade, the windows may have cracks, the exhaust may leak, etc but the car will continue to go down the road. Sooner or later, some catastrophic event will take the car out and the owner has to decide if he is willing to spend the $2k needed to repair the transmission on a car with bald tires, faded paint, cracked windows, etc etc etc.

This is exactly how we are today. Our educational system is the bald tires; our legal system is the knocking engine; our financial system is the transmission that no longer shifts into reverse; our political system is the worn brake pads.

Again, the car may drive for years like this but it is only one disaster away from a disaster.

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Brandon Smith
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written by Brandon Smith , February 01, 2016

@Nick

You clearly did not read the full article. I said that collapse is a process, not a "light switch"...

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whoa, pardner
written by Pogo , February 02, 2016

Brandon - you might want to look at Nickelthrower's comment again. He's agreeing with you: "It isn't, as the author posits, a lightswitch..." [but a process].


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Brandon Smith
...
written by Brandon Smith , February 03, 2016

@Pogo

Perhaps I am misreading. Is he saying that I "posit" the idea that collapse is a light switch, or I posit the idea that it is not? Maybe he will clarify...

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History repeating
written by EEWM , February 03, 2016

It's hard to see what's going on when you're distracted with the task of being a "good German".
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so now what?
written by Cam123 , February 03, 2016

So what do we do to protect our families? Buy gold coins? Stock up on food? Others will take (at the point of a gun), what they need from anyone else who has it....


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Hemmingway on Bankruptcy
written by Bill Jones , February 03, 2016

Gradually, then suddenly.
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Brandon Smith
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written by Brandon Smith , February 03, 2016

@Cam

Google "Alt-Market Solutions". I have written dozens of articles on how to prepare and respond to a crisis.

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really now
written by sarahc45 , November 11, 2016

you had me at "foreign immigrants". then I stopped reading altogether.
Europe as a continent is a million times better than US, you're a failing country

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