Letter Re: The Real Threats

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Hi HJL,

I realize that the writer of this article speaks from an area of professional focus, but we actually have more realistic threats. Also, I agree with your italicized comment about nuclear war. Europe was not nearly rendered uninhabitable, due to Chernobyl. Even if we thought that a nuclear war was non-survivable, not giving-up or quitting is the essence of being a survivalist. Also, terroristic “dirty bombs” are way overrated, and as the author of the article stated himself, most of the casualties would be from public perception and the mass panic.

As a collapse theorist myself, I would define the most likely threat at this point being a collapse of the U.S. dollar, as our current global fiat currency system is hitting its expiration date (since 1971, anyway). In regards to the entire span of civilized human history, we are now in uncharted territory, in the area of what we call money.

Also, even the resources that indirectly represent money are being depleted: Conventionally-extracted oil, fresh water, topsoil (the killer of previous civilizations), et cetera. These shale plays within the U.S. have made the U.S. production profile chart skyrocket, and we may even hit the all-time U.S. oil production peak of 10.013 mbl/d, set in October, 1970. However, these individual wells are expensive, and hit their peaks, and subsequent decline relatively quickly. Not to mention the costs to operate these wells. Has anyone wondered why gasoline prices have not come down, even with the record production? In other words, this parabolic rise will go negative, at some point: See this chart

Granted, we now only import 1/2 (as compared to 2/3) of our oil, but this is primarily due to economic demand destruction, since 2008.

However, what I really fear are the knock-on effects: Wars over what is left, et cetera. (Does anybody wonder why the U.S. government is pushing on Russia right now? It’s due to the fact that they produce as much oil on any given day as Saudi Arabia, not to mention other vast resources. Also, countries that cease to become oil exporters, such as Egypt, are going to lose it, as they lose revenue.

I highly recommend Richard Heinberg’s The End of Growth: Adapting to Our New Economic Reality. This is the century where everything basically peaks, then goes into decline. Cheers, Jerry

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