Friday, November 29, 2013

urban jungle


URBAN JUNGLE

Globally, most of us live in cities.  Even in third world crap holes ( which will of course quickly include the US, minus warm weather in December ), you go to the city for a job or for food.  Centralized agriculture isn’t just a force that wiped out American farmers.  And now that the whole globe is dependent on natural gas derived fertilizer and long distant grain transportation, of course we are running out those fuels that made that infrastructure possible ( running out of AFFORDABLE fuels ).  And you don’t replace a centralized system with a decentralized one when you are out of money, out of resources and out of time ( overpopulation ).  Urban areas are now way overcrowded.  They were overcrowded before Peak Oil in 2005 ( if you discount Unicorn Glitter Fuels from production, we have already gone over to the right of the bell curve ), only sustaining populations on petroleum grains.  You can’t suddenly go back to smaller cities fed by green belts surrounding the urban area, each self-sustaining.  You have the current population eating on unsustainably high per acre yields that can’t be reproduced by hand using current demographics.  Organics CAN yield much higher than mechanical farming, but only after the soil is reconditioned and kept healthy ( a historic abnormality ).  The good news of course is that the long term trend is your friend.  People are not going to go in the opposite direction of the money.  The cities have the money, money equals food, people move to the city.  If you can swim against the current, you win in the end.

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Now, I’m not talking Nirvana here.  Living in the rural areas has its own set of problems.  All I’m saying is that the cities will get more crowded, more dangerous and more expensive.  Which means rural land, although NOT prime farm land ( if I wasn’t worried about race wars and a second Yankee invasion, I’d live in the South, restoring worn out land ), in the long term, will be all things being equal, a little less of all those things.  Everything will get more expensive and more and more shortages will be the norm, given that urbanites are using their economic mastery to bid for what is left.  But they certainly don’t want crappy land out of the way.  I’m not saying you will be perfectly safe in the country, just safer.  And you won’t be able to live like city-folk.  That takes too much money ( if you try for the slick magazine way of country life, you are just city type Yuppie scum with a garden and chickens ).  I’d say, devolving from the car driving Wal-Mart shopping American way of life is going to be one of the few doable bright spots on our way towards collapse.  Yes, my gloriously loyal minions, here is your once a year optimistic article.  Enjoy it while you can.

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16 comments:

  1. Lord Bison of the Great Basin and King of Coiffure;

    Because you've tempered my strategy with cold brutal realism, I sincerely wish that after the massive die-off that you and the spouse will be able to re-locate to the Southern United States, where you can perform soil rehabilitation with generous amounts of rotted 'organic-mattter' to build up the levels of phosphorous, potassium, nitrogen and sulfur. As I've been saying for years, I don't want some expensive funeral, with paid mourners and bad music, I want to get mulched into some high quality compost and literally come back as a messload of Swiss Chard, or Silverbeet if your savvy. Organic Immortality a great concept for the resource depleted future.
    Keep keeping it real James!

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    Replies
    1. I'd love a Viking funeral, but given the lack of trees and water here, I'm sure the bastards will put me on a platform to mumify ( after the birds peck out my eyes and junk ).

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  2. Hey Mr. Bison,

    I have a question, and I don't know how to ask questions except to leave a comment.
    Why do so many folks focus on an economic collapse leading to social collapse? (thats the question) If we look back in history there was never a society that collapsed because of their economy. It was either relationships with their neighbors (which America kind of sucks at) or Food issues. Now seeing as we rely on oil for the transport of our crops or import than there is that part of the conundrum. Seeing as how a failing economy = less funds to purchase oil or even to import than that does equal a social collapse. Alongside the food importation there is the problem of drought (if gore warming trends are right) and fossil aquifers going dry but, nobody talks about that. (I guess they are either uneducated or too damn scared of the reality of dead grain lands) And the pessimistic calculations for the aquifers going dry kind of lines up with Oil production drying up which ALSO lines up with gore warming drought. Interesting yeah? Enough rambling I've gotta finish a paper.

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    1. In one aspect you are correct. Economic matters just make all other issues worse. Rome was buying off enemy armies, paying for grain imports, armies, etc. Why? Because the resources/soil were contracting. So they bought their way out of the problems. At first. Then they had to hyper-inflate. Economics, democraphics, soil depletion. Just like us. Weeeee! If I'm not mistaken, the north aquafer is okay, if polluted by fracking. The southern end is already toast. I myself focus on economic collapse as primary, and that is because it is already happening. Go back to all the articles "3pc2" for my last book on the subject.

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    2. Arguably, economics is not a great term to use for a lot of past society's problems. Demographics (declining population) and some bad luck seem to have done in the Western Roman Empire. The United States would have some of the same issues but we generally allow enough immigrants in to keep our population growing, or at least in balance.

      There have been societies where economics were a major factor in their collapse (Both the American and the French Revolution for example), but when you look closer, there are generally some other serious factors involved or the society would be able to work it out.

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    3. "Why do so many folks focus on an economic collapse leading to social collapse? (that's the question) If we look back in history there was never a society that collapsed because of their economy."

      Because for the first time in human history, all of the world economies are linked to one another. Digital money, having no true value, is being use to keep running the failing economies around the world.

      Because almost all money used now is fiat money.

      Just because something hasn't happened before in history, like using 2 nukes to win a war, doesn't me it can't.

      And like Bison said we have all the rest heaped onto that.

      Plus, 90% of the population doesn't farm anymore.

      What is coming now, is going to be a first in being truly world wide and how huge the kill off will be.

      MICoyote

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    4. It is dangerous to say never. The French Revolution was caused by a series of crop failures leading to famine in the country and food cost inflation in the cities. Most historians will tell you that the 1917 Russian revolution was caused as much by famine in the cities as failure in the war against the Germans.

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    5. And serious food issues ushered in Hitler

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  3. Hemp aint pot
    It is illegal to grow any sort of cannabis, though I have heard that you may buy cannabis indica aka pot aka marijuana at any schoolyard, pool hall or street corner.
    If you are dumb enough to plant hemp (cannabis sativa) to make food, clothing, ethanol etc you may come to a bad end. You may die in a hail of machinegun bullets and have your house burned down on you ala Waco. The SWAT team made an honest mistake. They said, " Oops. Thought it was pot, but it's not. Sorry about that," and swaggered away snickering and guffawing. Well, hey. They said they were sorry.
    EPA worries night and day about soil and water pollution. Does EPA know that 50% of pesiticides and insectides produced are used on cotton , whereas hemp needs none at all? Like, do all those tons of insecticide affect soil and water?
    I hesitate to think that OPEC, and those with vested interest in wood pulp and cotton offer cubic money to the incorruptible, honourable ladies and gentlemen in congress to maintain the ban on growing hemp in USA.
    The U.S. is the only industrialized nation in the world that does not allow hemp production.
    http://open.salon.com/blog/formermayor/2009/06/30/only_us_says_no_to_hemp_production
    Ron Paul wants to cancel the ban on growing hemp.
    http://www.hemphasis.net/Fuel-Energy/fuel.htm

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  4. http://www.thespringoflife.net/hemp.html
    Hemp (Cannabis sativa) – Hemp immediately makes us think of drugs. But there is no need for that! Marijuana is made from a different plant of the same family. Hemp contains such a tiny amount of THC (the psychoactive chemical found in marijuana) that it has no negative effects on humans. Hemp is actually one of the most healthful plants ever known to mankind. On top of that, it lends itself to the production of paper, cosmetics, building materials, textiles, non-toxic diesel fuel, paint, varnish, detergent, ink, lubricating oil, etc. Hemp is an unpretentious plant that can be grown in many climates.
    History: Hemp has been known to mankind for at least 10,000 years. A piece of hemp fabric has been found that dates back to 8,000 BC. Throughout history, whole populations have survived off hemp seed in times of famine. Chinese and Ayurvedic medicines have prescribed hemp for a myriad of diseases. Hemp was grown by farmers in the United States for hundreds of years. The United States presidents Washington and Jefferson grew hemp and praised it in their writings. Hemp was a major American crop in the 18th and 19th centuries, until a man named Harry Anslinger began promoting anti-marijuana legislation around the world, causing the prohibition of hemp cultivation in 1937. During World War II, when the U.S. was short of rope, fabric, and other materials, a campaign called “Hemp for Victory” was launched. Farmers were encouraged to grow hemp in great quantities. Though this was allowed, there was no increase of marijuana consumption. Still, after WW II, hemp farming was again banned.
    Interesting facts: One acre of hemp produces as much fibre as 2-3 acres of cotton. Hemp produces softer and more durable fabric than cotton. The very first pair of Levi Strauss jeans were made of hemp. No pesticides, fungicides, or herbicides are needed to grow hemp, while 50% of the world’s pesticides, fungicides, and herbicides are used to grow cotton. One acre of hemp produces the same amount of paper as 2-4 acres of trees AND it is much better in quality. Hemp paper stays intact for hundreds of years. The first ever printed Bible was been printed on hemp paper. Hemp can be used to make sturdy, resistant, and environmentally-friendly fibreboard and plastic. Henry Ford made a whole car of hemp in the beginning of the 20th century.
    Rich in: Hemp seeds are not intoxicating. They contain a very high amount of essential fatty acids that we need for optimum health. Hemp seeds contain omega-6-fatty acids, omega-3-fatty acids, gamma linoleic acid; 25% of high quality protein with all essential and non-essential amino acids; 20-30% of carbohydrates; dietary fibre; phytochemicals; the minerals phosphorus, potassium, magnesium, calcium, iron, and zinc; vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, C, E, folacin, and biotin; carotenoids; and chlorophyll.

    ..........more...
    http://www.thespringoflife.net/hemp.
    You are more than welcome to copy it. But You are requested to add my name - Eve Juurik- and my website address - http://www.TheSpringOfLife.net - to the article. All the material is copyrighted. Thank You!
    Please also see
    http://open.salon.com/blog/wayne_gallant/2008/11/08/romancing_the_stoned

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  5. Heres another topic of practical advice for you-
    How to pre cache supplies on the cheap without buying all the expensive stuff that all the other prep sites say you need to get (3 layers of mylar bags, 12inch PVC tube 12 feet long, hack saw, 250 peices of tubular scrap steel to bury in the area near your cache to throw off metal detectors, GPS receiver for bury coordinates to put into your Mac Book pro autocad mapping system, etc, etc.)
    How do you Hide, Preserve, and Maintain a resonable cach while minimizing losses due to theft, pests, flood, misplacement, or other factors?
    I know people say it isnt rocket science. But I also know lots of people who buried something only to never access it again in usable condition. Or to have it dug up by accident by the gardner/ construction crew/ etc..
    I know your devious and penny pinching mind can come up with a reliable reasonable plan for planting a diversity of preps in prepositioned locations in a manner that can maximize utility and minimize losses.
    So how about it?. Now during the frozen season here in the great white north is the time to plan such things for the next warm seasons advent.

    Oh Yeah!- And taking into account the season/weather and secrecy of retrieval should be part of any caching ....

    -Grey

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    1. I recommend "how to bury your cache" by Eddie The Wire ( I might be slightly off on title or author ). One of the few books from Paladin both affordable and not a rip-off. I don't think I could top his advice.

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    2. Or was it "how to bury your goods"?

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  6. The whole food conundrium. Food Historically has never been as cheap as it has been in our time. Food could quadruple in price and it would be still cheap(though its still to dear for many in the world and they starve to death). There is a lot of slack that could be taken up in the whole food pipline before there would be mass starvation. 30-40% of food is waisted, that could easyily be cut to something like 10% without to much pain. Millions of us are overweight, so in otherwords we are eating to much. restrict the diets of all those fattys out there and that's another big food saveing. Feeding grain to live stock, particularly rumniants like cattle is a really ineficaint use of resources. Beef production wouldn't drop by to much but the overall food supply would be greatly increased if cattle were raised on pasture and the grain was fed to people. There is a lot of superfless pets out there that are consumeing a lot of calories that could be done away with before mass starvation would become rampant. North America is a major food exporter which means there is a lot of surplass out there. Food production could probably drop to 25% of its present production and there probably would still be enough to go around without a lot of starvation. Come a collapse, there undoutabley will be a lot of starveing people out there, but it will be more of a food distribution problem(at least at the start) than a food production problem.

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    Replies
    1. Waste is built into the supply chain. I don't know if you can change that pre-collapse. During collapse, not enough time to change? Might be an article. Africa routinely starves amidst plenty because of distribution issues. We could do the same giving the right set of circumstances

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  7. How-To Survival Caching, Part 1: The Mindset and What You Need to Protect
    http://preparedforthat.com/survival-...-need-protect/

    Not bad.

    MICoyote

    ReplyDelete