The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

Preparing For Collapse During Collapse

As regular readers know my judgment is that we are now into civilization collapse. It’s slow right now, and it will be stop and start, but it will continue and pick up speed over time.

That means that you should be preparing for collapse to get worse, including climate change and ecological collapse.

Civilizations rise and fall, that’s normal, and ecological collapse commonly happens at the same time, but what’s unusual right now is that we have a world system which is global, and thus is collapsing all at once, and we have a global ecological collapse.

So it’s going to be bad. Very bad.

Still, there are things to be done.

The most important thing is to make and sustain social ties. The people who do best in collapses are those whom other people like and need. Join a church if you can stomach it (and there are churches which come with little theological baggage, for atheists.) Make friends with your neighbours and join groups. Be liked.

If you have family you can stand or good friends, consider communal living. An extended household will often do better than a person alone or a nuclear family, being both cheaper and having more ability to take care of itself and its members.

Get some skills: basic maintainence abilities will be worth a lot: electrical, plumbing, minor repairs, etc…

Figure out a way to grow some of your own food, or set up a relationship with local farmers, ideally one that is a trade of your abilities for their food. Back in the Great Depression one friend’s father was a lawyer, and he did the legal work for a lot of farms and they kept  him fed.

Gardens are so-so. Climate change is going to make outdoor gardening very uncertain. If you can, create something with climate control, ideally a green house and figure out a way to keep it cooled when necessary. You can do this in your house too, by replacing some walls and part of the roof with a transparent material, ideally with some form of shutters. If you have a flat roof, and it’s load bearing, you can put your green house up there.

Do something about water. Lack of water will kill you faster than anything but temperature and lack of oxygen. Some sort of storage system and ability to gather rain water is one possibility. If you’re somewhere humid, dehumidifiers of the right type can produce enough water for drinking. Get some sort of purification system, something simple.

Power is going to be an issue. Solar panels have a limited lifespan and so do batteries, but they’re better than nothing. You want to be able to provide power for a couple weeks and/or during brown outs — if power will be out hours every day due to rationing, you need to be able to handle that. Some form of non-panel solar is a good idea: research heat engines and see if you can figure out how to store energy mechanically by raising water or physical objects or some other way.

Temperature control is another obvious issue, and figuring out  how to stay cool is important. As heat rises, public power will become less reliable at exactly the times you need it, so the power equation above is important.

If there are local violent authories, whether government (police/military) or non-government (gangs) make sure they like you. Become friends with their leaders if possible. As civilization breaks down, be part of whatever replaces them in certain areas. (Like in Iraq, where various militias and mosques took over.

In general, though, understand that supply chains are going to become more and more unreliable. Get the tech you need as soon as possible, and make it tech that is durable and/or easy to maintain. Buy spare parts and take training so that you can fix your own equipment, which will also make you valuable to your neighbours.

Learn how to make certain simple medicines if you can: basic antibiotics are not hard to make and the same is true of the sulfa drugs. If you can do this, you’re golden, because you’ll be able to help other people and you will be valuable to them.

Medical systems, especially public ones will become more and more unreliable and less and less available to people who aren’t on the inside. Take care of as many medical issues as you can right now. I like to joke that it’s a good thing I got cancer now, because in 10 years I’m not sure I’d have gotten care soon enough. You can’t schedule something like cancer, but you can make sure whatever problems  you have now are dealt with.

Taper off drugs you use all the time if that’s possible. For some, like insulin, you’re out of luck (but should look into how to get an alternative supply), but for many other drugs, tapering now rather than being forced to go cold turkey is advisable IF it’s medically appropriate.

Take action as soon as possible. The more money you have, of course, the easier this will be, but if you don’t have money there are still things you can do, like joining local maker clubs, churches and organizations. If you have extra money do use some of your money to prepare: money will become less valuable as time goes by.

We’re on the downward slope now. If you want to survive, or to have a decent life, take whatever steps you can.

This is a donor supported site, so if you value the writing, please DONATE or SUBSCRIBE


Quick Takes 5: The Year Climate Change Became Undeniable


A Basic Buddhist Meditation Synthesis


  1. NotLikeThis

    Is it possible the USA is in slow, kleptocratic decline?
    Does history show patterns in the rise and fall of nations/states?
    Are there repeating cycles of generational behavior and archetypes?
    Ǐ̴͜s̸͚̀ ̶̘͆ť̴̟h̸̬̔ḯ̴͓s̴̼͛ ̵̡̀à̸ͅ ̸͓̓s̶̺̈ȉ̶̪m̵̭͐u̷̹̐l̷̳̾a̵̳̚t̸̬̎i̴̢͘o̴̻͛n̷͉͒?̶͔̌

    I asked questions like these to family and friends 10 years ago. No one is interested. Often I’m told I’m being unpatriotic. Un-American. Weird. Their advice is to stop thinking about that stuff. Focus on something useful. Be more positive.

    Today, I believe the average American can at least smell the smoke now. But who cares? The “average” American is fat, unhealthy, undisciplined yet obedient, drugged, lacking critical or deep thinking, socially distanced, spiritually dead, out of touch with their instincts, and they are mentally barraged from a myriad of sources who seek control of your attention, money, emotions, thoughts, and life.

    The ship is sinking, but I’m paralyzed. Do I fight to keep our doomed ship afloat? Or do I laugh and enjoy the show?

  2. Willy

    As a boomer speaking selfishly, I just want to stem the tide of all this inevitable collapse for just a few more years, and hopefully even a couple more decades. I can manage the developing shit, but probably couldn’t handle at my age in my condition, a total collapse.

    I’ve seen Trump apologists or even Trumpism itself infiltrating leftist zones. WTF. It wouldn’t surprise me in the slightest if this was a direct result of our plutocrat-funded machination machine. I’d advise resisting and sticking with Biden and his Democrats, such they are. At least they seem to have the ability to feel a bit of guilt, even some shame.

    A vote for Trump could well be little different from a vote for Franco or Pinochet or Mussolini.

    In the years that would ensue during a Trump reign, you’d likely be kissing your leftist leaders asses goodbye. Anything climate-change-mitigating would be entirely in the hands of plutocratic overlords looking for profit. Even in an age where green energy is cheaper. You could be laying low for a long while with no real safe means of expressing your angst in any kind of public way. Sure, Spain, Argentina and occasionally Italy are now fairly desirable center-to-center-leftist places these days. Decent health care systems. But in Spain’s case, it took decades to get there. If you hope that Trump is gonna burn it all down, you might want to think again and consider what he actually accomplished for the common citizen, which IMO was a slow burn down.

  3. different clue


    If you are thinking of Naked Capitalism as one of those Trumpification-under-way leftist zones, I don’t think plutocratic infiltration or funding is involved. I think it is their own ideological purity-seeking and Lambert Strether’s bitterness in particular over political and possibly personal betrayals from the Democratic Party. He has DDS ( Democrat Derangement Syndrome) and PMCDS ( PMC Derangement Syndrome).
    He will end up supporting Trump in election 2024 to teach the Democrats a lesson. He has described the “Democrat Party” as a “rotting corpse that can’t bury itself” and he is committed to doing his best in his little corner of the blogosphere to help bury it.

    He would dismiss concerns of an Argentina-style “dirty war” against the “left” as defined and fingered by MAGAnons and Trumpanons like Marjorie Taylor Green as alarmist shilling for the Democrats. I think he just can’t bring himself to believe that such a thing could ever happen here.

    There will be others who contribute to a Trump victory without overtly intending to.
    Cornell West is on a speaking-truth-to-power trip and will run on that basis in 2024. If he gets votes that would never have gone to Biden in any case, it could be an interesting political temperature reading. If he gets votes that would have gone to Biden otherwise, then he could end up helping to tip the balance to Trump.

    Then there are all the cardboard replica foam-rubber Leninists who think ” the worse things get the better they are.” Lefto-accelerationists will try getting Trump elected in hopes of blowing American society into little pieces in the vain belief that they, the Lefto-accelerationists, will be the ones to seize power in all the chaos and excitement. But they won’t. There is an AR-15 gap between the Lefto-accelerationists and the Conservanons which is too big to ever reduce.

    I think that Naked Capitalism, the various Foam Rubber Leninists, Cornell West, and etc. may be said to have an Underpants Gnome theory of revolution or liberation or whatever. That’s named after the Underpants Gnomes in a South Park episode. The Underpants Gnomes are stealing all of Cartman’s underwear and they explain why:

    The Naked Capitalism Underpants Gnome theory of Revolution and Liberation is this:

    Phase 1: Get Trump ( or another Republican) re-elected.
    Phase 2: ?
    Phase 3: Revolution and Liberation!

  4. Bill

    Good advice as always.
    I would recommend people look at the following website –
    as it is excellent and you can down load the books. The keeper of the site is very approachable and I have had conversations via email with him several times over the years. There is, I believe, a method to make insulin on the site, but remember diet and exercise can greatly influence your health.

  5. Troy

    People won’t “see” the collapse in action. They’ll still be living their lives but death rates will climb, and they’ll feel the hard times financially but to paraphrase Pratchett describing something very large: it’s so massive, it can’t be seen because it’s in the way.

    The rich may move and they’ll become a rare sight in certain areas. Maybe they’ll move north but a great many people will stay in place and die or just disappear. Maybe they’ll have melted or evaporated.

    People will feel something is fundamentally wrong. They cast about, looking for reasons or something to blame, and sometimes they’ll be right. But many, many people will want someone else to do something about the problem. And so long as the Merchants of Doubt are still out there doing their thing, the things that will for the most get done will be the wrong things. The right things will require revolution, but revolution won’t happen until all other terrible options have been exhausted, and recycled and tried again a few times. Revolution may come too late.

    The sensible advice right now is to just hunker down, maybe move somewhere safe-ish. To be honest though, where is safe right now? Every place on Earth is developing its own type of social and ecological disaster. Places we may have thought previously safe may become unlivable due to some unforeseen change.

    Like Ian says, all we can do is develop the communities around us to the best of our abilities. That’s it. That’s what little we can do for ourselves. Hopefully, it’s enough for many of us.

  6. GlassHammer

    1. Give random small gifts to your neighbors, it shows you care about them but it doesn’t make them feel like they owe you a huge and inconvenient debt.

    2. When you start improving your health don’t neglect balance and flexibility. It’s not fun to injure yourself because you lost your balance and fell despite having more than enough strength to complete the task.

  7. GrimJim

    Absolutely indispensable reading.

    History does not repeat, but it sure as hell rhymes.

  8. CarlostheDracul

    I haven’t had time to keep up with those good folks at NC, but if they are preferring Trump to Biden, it doesn’t really bother me. The Dems have a symbiotic or dialectical relationship with the far right, and the more we elect Dems, the more likely Trumps are, so getting invested in those outcomes are enough to make you lose your mind.

  9. Soredemos

    I’ll admit I refuse to mess with electrical, but plumping is easy. Ludicrous easy usually. After my last $1500 plumping bill (and that was the low bidding local plumper; the national chain plumper wanted twice that) for what was maybe $400 of materials, going forward I’m just going to do my own unless it’s something truly major. At worst you’re screwing things together and sealing (don’t bother with teflon tape; it sucks, just smear on pipe dope), and at best you’re working with PEX. If you have copper, rip it out and go with all PEX (PEX A for the foolproof expansion fittings, PEX B with crimp will work well enough as well). Yes, plastic pipting, it’s what you want. Better living through chemistry, unironically.

  10. Willy

    So if Lambert is correct, we all need to hit bottom along with the junkies. Maybe I’m being a bit selfish, but I never quite understood the thrill of hitting bottom. Seems overrated to me. Me, I’d rather hang out with the ‘some are junkies but not all crowd’ (D), instead of the ‘everyone’s always wasted all the time crowd’ (R).

    Because if you’re big into giving speeches about the evils of addiction it seems that nobody on the always-wasted side is gonna be listening much. So it’d be smarter to keep pushing them down so they can hit bottom to then realize the error of their ways?

    According to a friend of the guy in that video, after a brief heroic battle as a “Neighborhood Hope Dealer”, he’s dead.

  11. Bill

    I have just read an estimate of the amount of gold and foreign currency various countries have. It put China at 3+ trillion and USA at about 0.7 trillion. Has anyone seen a recent figure for USA gold as I believe this has not been updated since the 1950s or 1960s and was something like 20,000 tonnes but might not be correct now. Does this mean the USA is nearer collapse than they want us to know?

  12. Willy

    With most fittings these days being lower tolerance cheap Chinese-made, the plumber’s trick now is to wrap the teflon tape 3-5 winds on the male side and then dope on top of that and inside the female end. Seriously, do both. Otherwise, you could be coming back to a leak the next day. Sucks to redo especially if you’re doing a hybrid plastic pipe-brass fitting system inside a wall. But if it’s just a fixture, sometimes they’ll self seal over time.

    CPVC is easy but has a half-life of 25 years or so especially in thermal expansion zones like attics. Copper will last if you keep your water heater maintained. If it’s allowed to corrode you’ll be getting little flakes of ferrous sitting atop copper inside the horizontal sections of your potable, causing galvanic corrosion.

    And no, I’m not a plumber. Mine quit the business so I had to learn since I could never find an adequate replacement who wasn’t wicked expensive and under severe time pressures from his boss.

    Wiring is easy by comparison unless they guy before you was an asshole. In those cases it’ll be difficult. Such as when the do-it-yourselfer house-flipper cuts all the box wires to only 2″ long because he was too cheap to pay the $1 extra for larger boxes so he could fold the code length 6-8″ long wires inside neatly. But at least code-compliant box extenders are cheap if he also nailed all his in way too shallow. If you find you’ve got knob-n-tube in your old house behind old school plaster… fun times ahead.

    If you’re rich you’ll watch This Old House where the boys will show you how to supervise tradesmen, ever since Bob Vila quit teaching the far more practical previous generation how to do everything themselves.

    And finally, try and avoid all the “luxury” crap being sold today. Stuff like large format tile showers, stone-whatever countertops, and composite decking with aluminum handrails require serious specialized prep-work to look right and function properly. Not to mention the resale value will be a bit less during an End of Days scenario. For example, the new copper-laden pressure treated lumber they’ve mandated after some kid licked the old arsenic impregnated stuff and got sick, is far more hostile to weakly galvanized steel and especially aluminum. Stainless and some kind of isolation membrane will become your best new hidden extra cost friends.

    It might be best to stick to what Bob Vila did back in the days when America Wasn’t Neccessarily Great But Way The Hell More Practical. Before the dark times. Before guys like I posted in my previous comment started popping up everywhere. Come to think of it… forget everything I said and just become a drug dealer.

  13. Soredemos


    Never done both. Just used dope. No leaks.

    There’s no reason to use CPVC. I had a section of that that I ripped out and replaced with PEX the same time the last of the copper went. Copper is a stupid nightmare to work with, needing a freaking blowtorch (a new thing is crimpable copper, but seriously just use PEX). Fixtures should all be connected to the pex with self-sealing compression valves (and spend the literally cents more and get the quarter turn ones, not the 360 turn ones). The only metal piping left is the 18 inches from the water heater to the PEX because it’s against code to connect PEX directly to a heater.

    PEX A lasts, and is incredibly durable. If people are hesitant to trust plastic pipes, how about this: my imbecile parents left me a house that it turned out never had a pressure control valve installed. I finally measured it. For 20+ years the house had 140 psi of raw pressure coming into from the meter. It should be 60. It’s literally against code for a residential building to have above 80. Fixtures and toilet shutoffs are only rated up to 125. We blew up at least one faucet this way, and my parents could never figure out the problem. I had a proper pressure valve and water shutoff installed, all in a nice big valve box. I’ll also be replacing all the fixtures over time just to be safe. But here’s the thing that is my point: the PEX A with expansion fittings that is all the piping under the house leading to all those faucets is still intact. All bone dry. Rated up to 160 psi. It’s all handled the abuse fine.

  14. StewartM

    What Willy and DC said. Trumpists–and it doesn’t have to be Trump specifically, though he touches that base most effectively. Personally, I think that’s because stupid people like other stupid people and recognize them when they hear them, preferring the genuinely stupid to people like Ted Cruz (Princeton), Ron DeSantis (Harvard) or Steve Bannon (Virginia Tech/Goldman Sachs) and others who are just pretending to be stupid. And, what I mean by “stupid” is the Dietrich Bonhoeffer definition of “stupid”—a person who willfully acts in a way that damages others AND themselves. To Bonhoeffer, stupid people are more of a threat than evil people (evil people are ‘bandits’ by his system, he defines these as people who hurt others to help themselves) because evil people can be deterred from evil if the cost to themselves is too high. But stupid people won’t be deterred even by the negative consequences of their actions to themselves.

    The “Naked Capitalism Underpants Gnome theory of Revolution and Liberation” that DC describes (usually as an ‘accelerationist’ argument) has never worked in practice. The KDP (German Communist Party) tried it with Hitler rather than support even its partner SPD (Socialists). That’s because the authoritarian mindset favored by conservatives openly says things like “conservatism can never fail, it can only be failed”, and thus to them the proper response when their ideology doesn’t work when applied (as it never does) is to double down even harder, with FORCE. Conservatism and libertarian ideologies are not open to empirical refutation (in fact, they don’t accept the application of the scientific method to social systems at all). Nor are their followers generally open to empirical evidence that refutes the validity of their beliefs.

    So, what would actually happen once more rightwingers get in power and their policies fail (and we’ve actually this in practice) are ‘witch hysterias’. The anthropologist Marvin Harris explained the 16th century witch hysteria in Europe as the ‘magic bullet’ of the propertied class which deflected blame away from themselves for the problems of society (those dastardly witches are at it again!) and moreover made the PTB an indispensable asset in the fight to ‘save’ you (you could see them ‘protecting’ you every time they carbonized yet another poor woman alive). There will be a figment of truth to their accusations–there actually were ‘witches’ in the 16th century, i.e., people still practicing folk remedies and cures that predated the Christian era–but of course an old woman preparing a medicinal broth to heal a sick child isn’t doing all the enormous damage accredited to her.

    What this means is that one of the first responses to social collapse will be waves of persecution against the powerless scapegoats in society, and also very likely war. We see this in the the anthropological record–when the underlying infrastructure fails, as it likely did with the Mayan civilization, the result was war. The war will be the symptom and not the cause.

    So I think, as I’ve said before, if you are a member of a group likely to be persecuted, you should move to a place where you think you will likely be safe. That should be your first criteria. I think the ‘survivalist’ stuff is actually secondary–ultimately will be important too, but it won’t be the first point of system failure.

  15. mago

    Glad I don’t drink coffee.

  16. Soredemos

    @different clue

    This is such a goofy take on NC and Strether. I’ve never seen them offer any kind of revolutionary vision, no firm blueprint for how change could happen. They don’t have a real theory of change because they don’t see any positive path forward as politics in the US currently exist.

    And they’re right. The Democratic Party *is* a rotting corpse. Meanwhile the GOP has already been bones for more than a century, and that’s not particularly worth commenting on (you can get detailed commentary on how comically malevolent Republicans are anywhere). Anyone who thinks supporting the Dems is going to fundamentally change anything is utterly delusional.

    NC has never endorsed Trump, merely attempted to offer nuanced explanations of why some people support him and what role he’s playing in a collapsing system. I have zero expectation they will ever endorse him in the future.

  17. Trendar

    I’ve tried constructing various simple water filters, and I’d like to try building this very cheap desalinator, which is easy to build at home:

  18. Willy

    @ Soredemos,

    The water main in my area was being worked on and they forgot the regulator. A lot of residents had fun stuff like sudden leaks and water heater relief valves blowing. Pex A sure is fast for new construction but I have yet to try it. Seems all the rage for plumbers these days. If I’m seeing it used for even simple bathtub valve replacements where there’d been copper or other previously, it probably means that plumbers old and new are prefering it and whatever-adapters in all cases, instead of having to lug around all the other pipes and equipment. Maybe it’s more than just another quickie fad. One thing I’ve avoided in any closed situation is push-to-connect, that quickie fad for the prosumer class. If I can see it or if leaks wont matter much like in a garage then I’ve used it. But as a general rule I don’t trust new things. Not with our Ivy League legacy MBA retards managing damned near everything. CPVC was a bad fad IMHO, and is thankfully on its way out. If it’s time-tested proven and practical then I’m good. Maybe in a “Preparing For Collapse During Collapse” world, Pex A expando-tool skills and hooking-up-to-whatever-the-hell-kluge-you’ve-inherited skills might be a good one-size-fits-all thing. Leave the heat shields and specialty wrenches behind.

  19. Willy

    @ Stewart M

    One problem I’ve had was trying to grok stupid people. For most of my life I assumed I was one of them (having been emotionally abused as a child by Dunning Krugers). I was always humbled by all there is to know, was highly deferential to self-advertised age, education, experience and wisdom. I often capitulated to the highly confident well spoken, assuming there had to be some hard knocks reasons behind that behavior.

    Then I had a couple epiphanies. Stupid people can’t acknowledge when they’ve done stupid while smart people can. Stupid people don’t have the emotional wherewithal to know when something is beyond their means. They just say or do dumb stuff and screw up badly, then engage in whatever kind of mental defense they need to avoid any sense of guilt, contrition, fear and loathing… so they can keep their emotional and social status boats floated. Smart people have the ability to face humiliation head on, then use whatever pain they feel to fuel the learning experience they’ll need to do better next time. Intelligence probably has more of an emotional component than something like ‘synapses firing more efficiently’.

    The second epiphany was that manipulators can spot stupid people and become good puppetmasters. There’s the old adage, “salesman love the buyers who won’t do their homework”. Manipulators know who won’t do their homework and take full advantage. They also know who does do their homework and have strategies for keeping them down. Our current GOP seems far ahead of the Dems in this regard. And Trump is even further ahead of that, assuming that he didn’t stumble upon some principle where stupid people admire stupid people who still “succeed” despite all the stupid they do.

    For the left to get ahead, we might have to better understand the stupids. There’s a lot of them out there.

  20. Soredemos


    PEX isn’t new is the thing. It’s been used in Europe for fifty years. It’s only (relatively) new in the US.

    I’ve actually used two of the push-to-connect fittings, to join old PEX under the house with new PEX going up to the metal water heater pipes (the old pipe was janky copper. One was a corner piece with a 90 degree bend doing the work of a straight piece because that was just what the lazy, cheap plumber had in his van that day twenty years ago. Ridiculous. It’s all straight and orderly now). So far they’ve held up as fine as any other connection method. If they were to go bad they’re super easy to get to.

    A long term project with the house is essentially to de-kludge it. Make everything standardized and easy to access and work on. How things should have been from the start.

  21. StewartM


    I wasn’t being that profound (though the Bonhoeffer quadrant of:

    “Smart people” — people who make life for themselves better and everyone else;

    “Bandits” (evil people) — people who make their life better at the cost of making the lives of everyone else worse;

    “Helpless people” (victims) — people who make everyone else’s lives better but at the cost of making their own life worse;

    “Stupid people” — people who make everyone else’s lives worse while also making their own life worse.

    I find very useful. )

    Mind you, this is not necessarily tied to educational attainment. You can be highly degreed but also stupid. So you’re right, there is an emotional component in this (maybe related to what we call ‘wisdom’, the ability to see past the immediate consequences of one’s acts and think of the possible unintended future consequences, which is probably the chief failing of stupid people).

    By contrast, a ‘smart person’ is smart because he realizes that not ‘winning’ 100 % now just because he can is not a good long-term strategy; a more stable outcome is to ‘win’ yet still give the ‘loser’ enough to still feel pretty happy about the arrangement. I’ll leave it to you to figure out what kind of decisions our current Ayn Rand form of capitalism thinks as acceptable.

    With Trump, I think he actually is stupid (in both the Bonhoeffer and ordinary meaning of the term). Paradoxically, I think that’s why his base loves him. Think of the guy who always stridently and confidently enters an argument, and tangles with a smarter guy who knows his stuff, and loses badly. The result is often not “gee, oh I was wrong” but a burning resentment about those “smarty pants” people. I’ve heard Rush Limbaugh railing against those ‘thin as rail scientists”, which is this sentiment weirdly coupled with body self-loathing.

    These people think the proper job of those in intellectual pursuits is only to create more technological toys for them but never publish anything that challenges the current power structure or their privilege. Stupidity is also reinforced by an educational system that generally before college that teaches both information that doesn’t challenge any social ‘truths’ and moreover teaches knowledge almost as revealed truth rather than the result of a long process of questioning and figuring things out, and that even the best knowledge can always be upset or modified by new findings.

    So–are we more stupid now? Do Bonhoeffer’s definitions describe some innate component of human personality and behavior, or are they malleable? I think it’s a combination of both. I do believe, though, that in an economy where (Ayn Rand) you grab as much as you can right now (i.e., so-called ‘rational behavior’) and the future be damned does feed the ‘bandit’ behavior (and with bandits come victims) and also stupid behaviors. To change it you have punish and disincentivize short-term grabbing and favor a long-term perspective by favoring long-term rewards.

  22. different clue


    I read once a folk-tale. It goes like this . . .

    A passing stranger observed the townsfolk making fun of the village idiot by playing the following game . . . . they would offer him a nickel and a dime and say “you get to keep the one you pick.” And he would pick the nickel every time. ” Ha Ha . . . what an idiot.”

    The passing stranger finally asked the village idiot why he picked the nickel every time. ” Because if I picked the dime, they would stop playing the game with me.”

    Such a smart village idiot, when you slow down and observe the bigger picture over time.

  23. Jessica

    I strongly disagree with the notion that NakedCapitalism will ever support Trump. What they support is understanding why something like half the country supports him. (Plot spoiler: It is not because that half of the country is idiots or a***les.)
    In Weimar Germany, the Social-Democratic Party (SPD) was not the partner of the Communist Party (KPD). The Weimar SPD was the faction of the pre-war SPD that broke its pledge to oppose the coming war and supported Germany in WW1. The KPD was the faction of the pre-war SPD that came to oppose the war. During the German Revolution, the SPD hired proto-Nazis to murder the leadership of the KPD. Not friends.
    The KPD did not try in any way to use Hitler to prepare the ground for revolution. The KPD was fighting the Nazis in the streets for years, including gun battles (more losing than winning, given who the police supported) .
    I am sure that when they were sitting in Dachau for years and years, many of the leftists regretted not forming some kind of more successful united front against the Nazis, but that is Monday morning quarterbacking. I don’t think anyone understood how successful the Nazis were going to be at turning partial power in the national government into full power over a lot more than the government.
    Stewart M, I agree that anyone likely to be a victim of persecution should make getting to some place safe from such persecution their number one priority.
    Willy, I strongly disagree with your take in Naked Capitalism and that only Trump and his kind represent a threat to freedom in the US. It is the Democrats who have the US in a proxy war with a peer nuclear power and the Democrats who do their best to suppress discussion of the class war from the top that Trump pretends to be the solution to. But thank you so much for the info on Pex piping. I am showing that part to my boyfriend, who does most of the plumbing at our place.

  24. Jessica

    “Stupid people” — people who make everyone else’s lives worse while also making their own life worse.
    Stewart M, long ago I read a theory that civilizations decline when there is a shift from bandits to stupid people shift or from bandits whose own gain balances out the loss they impose on other to bandits who create massive loss but for only small gain for themselves. As an example, stealing is zero sum in a narrow sense (though enough of it has a negative impact on social trust), but killing someone for a small amount of money creates a tiny amount of gain for the killer but a massive loss for the killed.
    The same theory also said that the percentage of assh**es was absolutely fixed. The author even gave a number, though I forget what it was. I think around 6%. He claimed that even if you created a new sub-group specifically excluding assh***es, you would still wind up with a group that had the same proportion of assh***es.

  25. different clue

    Here is a article-link plus thumbnail commentary on the article being linked to in today’s “links” post at Naked Capitalism. I will copy-paste it right here.

    ” Saudi Arabia extends oil production cut even as US gas prices hit nine-month highs CNN. While Saudi Arabia generally wants higher oil prices, MbS does not like Biden, so if oil prices are high in the runup to the election, IMHO the impact on the Biden campaign would be a welcome side effect. ”

    Now . . . when Yves Smith refers to ‘the Biden campaign’, does she mean ‘the Biden campaign’ to be the DemPrez nominee? Or does she assume that he will be the 2024 DemPrez nominee? Because if that is what she is assuming, then the text of her comment would have to mean that she would consider the impact on the Biden campaign’s being a “welcome side effect” to mean being a ” welcome side effect” on Biden’s 2024 Presidential Election campaign. But I don’t know for sure from the literal text of the language if she is referring to Biden’s campaign to get re-nominated or his campaign — if renominated — to get re-elected.

    So since I can’t be exactly sure which of those two meanings she really means, I can’t say for sure what outcome she is hoping for. So I can’t say for sure that this is the sort of non-endorement endorsement ( in the spirit of Nixon’s non-denial denials) that Naked Capitalism wants to get away with stealth-giving Trump while trying to claim otherwise, that is what it smells like to me.

    So I continue to think my analysis of Naked Capitalism’s attitude to Trump continues to have predictive power. And I continue to predict that Naked Capitalism will do everything it can to get the Democratic nominee defeated and will spin Trump every way it can as being ” not as bad as” the Democratic nominee. And if Trump gets elected, Naked Capitalism will gloat over the Democrats’ loss.

    Events will prove me right or wrong. If events prove me wrong, all-y’all can laugh at me as much as you like.

  26. B. Good

    @different clue

    “So since I can’t be exactly sure which of those two meanings she really means, I can’t say for sure what outcome she is hoping for. So I can’t say for sure that this is the sort of non-endorement endorsement [etc.]”

    Geez, do you agonize over every other sentence you read in trying to figure out whether it puts the Biden Campaign in a positive or negative light? You seem to be so pleased with yourself when you call anyone who disagrees with your political position stupid, yet you are obsessed with every nuance of what someone who does disagree said.

    I think Trump has made most (all?) democrats literally lose their minds. You think any collapse can only happen if people don’t vote for Biden next year? Gee, that’s too bad for you kid, you must be living in a real hell. It’s also too bad Democrats don’t even ask for votes anymore (it’s always a matter of what us voters MUST do), I’m sure they’d get a heck of a lot more when the chips are down.

    Sorry because you’ll frown, but there’s no way in hell I’ll vote for Biden. And you know what kid? Even if you get real sad and say a bunch of mean things, as you obsessive types inevitably do, you won’t change my mind.

  27. different clue

    @B. Good,

    Yes, but is my analysis wrong? If it is, then Naked Capitalism will not end up giving Trump their implausibly-deniable non-endorsement endorsement by election time. And my prediction will be proven wrong.

    Time will tell.

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén