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The hope certainly is obligatory. I haven't read a single book on peak oil or climate change or other such problems without some (quite often seemingly shoehorned) bit about how somehow everything will be okay if just A, B or C is done post haste.

Vernon Bush

You know, you can prepare for whats coming.... it won't be impossible to survive and even come out, if not great, at least OK and with some degree of happiness. Takes a firm decision to do so and a firm will to get ready in a serious manner.




Just in time for this weeks theme...

" ... Building the future: Does robotics hold the key to building a generation of innovative young Ugandans who can find solutions to some of the country's technology problems? "



I'm with this guy; I really do not see the technological advances creating what it takes to survive this: common sense and reasoning. That is what has been abandoned then replaced with smart phones. "What's ya doing?"...."Oh nothin"...."just chillin"... taking place while you are at everyone else’s beckon call cannot possible be better than a busy tone on the end of the receiver because guess what? "I'm busy!" And I'll say that the majority of these calls that clog once unfettered air waves are entirely unnecessary and are basically needless grasp for attention from the self-important status of owning a cell phone. After all, you’ve so many free minutes and all…Seriously, I see people on a treadmill in the gym having long, drawn out conversations about squat that almost always end with “I’ll call you later” for round two of a nowhere dialog about absolutely nothing.
Now don’t get all pissy and say “it isn’t so because just the other day I had a bulge in my right groin and was able to immediately call my Dr’s answering machine and leave a message” because I am not saying these phones are useless, all I am saying is if you use one of these technologically advanced tools, there is an extreme addiction to using them for broadcasting stupidity and dumbness that never use to exist.


Also, suddenly on this timely topic, ahem, P.K. has a cute graph of supermarket productivity and computer manuf productivity vs ~the last 30 years timescale ... and a blurb about some other clueless highly-respected expert blaming the govt for the lack of progress in non-computer innovations.


John Theodorou

I'm not saying this will happen anytime soon, but if things really do start going downhill—a genuine collapse...

Dave, what's your best guestimate for when all this goes down?


Kunstler is really a very thoughtful and insightful individual, and I very often agree with his viewpoints.

But the very best thing about him is his ability as a wordsmith. He is absolutely one of the best writers in America today. A fine accomplishment all of its own, and the one he will be remembered for.

Bless you Jim, for cranking out some of the finest journalism of the last 50 years.


Technology, like energy will only be for the richest among us, as well as basics such as food and shelter. It's already going that way. I also believe it will get guerilla ugly fast wtshtf and I too, probably will not be a survivor. I still think about the effects of the aftermath hurricane Katrina on humankind, the violence, the cops running away, the drug addicts going nuts and murdering doctors holding out with their patients in the hospitals, the "RULES" about not being allowed to go to safety across a damn bridge. It will be a desperate, dark place this United States. The doomer survialists will kill each other trying to hang onto to their stashes, many people will die off in great numbers due to lack of medication, the police will turn tail and run or become madmen in charge. Nah, I don't want to see it unless there is a group of altruistic, hardworking, smart, strong, naturally healthy people who want to break away from the rest of the states. Although some may say it's a purely utopian pipedream, I believe only in the low tech, sustainable, Ecotopian way of life.

Anywhere But Here Is Better

...if things really do start going downhill—a genuine collapse—I certainly don't want to be around to see it.

The question is, when does one stop paying life assurance premiums?

Mike Roberts

I'm currently reading Jim's book (not far to go) and haven't yet come upon hope. The term "minimize suffering" is pretty vague. At worst, it can mean that though there will be a lot of suffering, there is a chance that such suffering can be made less than it otherwise would be. I suppose it's likely that some people in some localities will be able to do a bit better than others when they accept what's happening and respond as best they can. So I'm not sure Kunstler is offering hope (though I haven't quite reached the last 14 pages). The only real quibble I have with the book, so far, is that on one occasion, he implies that there is a possibility that humans have not been the prime driver of climate change (though definitely have damaged the ecosystem in other ways), though that was only one phrase.

I've also read World Made By Hand and it's mostly a good read (with a weird bit towards the end). I'm not sure if he sees the world turning out like the book but it's certainly a possibility, at least in some places (apart from the weird bit).

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