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Time to Transition


April 14, 2014 – Alex Smith, of Radio Ecoshock, recently conducted a thoughtful interview with Dr. David Korowicz of Dublin.  Honestly, the adjective hair-raising would be far more accurate, in light of the fact that Korowicz dares to examine, in all its particulars, how the world as we know it will come apart at the seams.  He calls it rapid collapse.

Korowicz begins by studying a micro version of global collapse, that is, the economic disaster suffered by his own country of Ireland almost six years ago.  He believes that the Irish were able to put the pieces back together, at least in part, because Ireland is a small country where people feel personally involved with the day-to-day running of national matters.  This engenders societal trust, and a feeling that, with effort, things can once again be made right.  The Irish economy is broad-based, with a manageable level of poverty.  Since poverty is a leading cause of corruption, problems like nepotism, bribery, and tax avoidance didn’t need fixing.

On a broader scale, the world has become extremely interdependent, with many countries importing increasing amounts of food and energy.  In the wake of globalization, nations aspiring to developed-world status eagerly take on more and more debt, while at the same time encouraging their populations to want and expect all the material benefits enjoyed by richer countries.  Self-reliance has gone by the wayside.  Awareness of escalating vulnerability seems lacking, though as individuals it seems highly unlikely we would willingly turn over our food supply to unknown others.

Along with our increased dependency on far-away suppliers goes an inability to guard even that most essential element of modern civilization, electrical supply.  Easily disabled by either climate chaos or terrorists, even the United States is unable to keep its grid secure.  Vulnerability is further exacerbated by just-on-time delivery of food, medicine, building and repair supplies and tools, and other extremely valuable items.  As if all this weren’t enough, our continued demand for faster and faster service makes the whole system wobble a bit as it attempts to maintain a precarious balance.

Here’s what Korowicz thinks: we’re primed and ready for economic failure.  He believes the banks are headed for collapse, that we are currently enjoying an all-too-brief hiatus from reality (though the poor and waiting-to-be-poor unemployed would tell him different).  New currencies will be tried, most will fail, credit will completely dry up, and at that point the supply chain will stop functioning.  With only enough of everything to last a few days, the results could be horrific.

At some point, sad to say, global warming will also enter the picture, with further challenges to our high-speed, interdependent way of life.  Korowicz believes it is inevitable that, for a time, cascading failure will demoralize unfed millions.  Millions who have grown a great deal poorer.  Governments will no longer be able to help their distressed populations.  Pandemics may enter the mix as well.  Those who can will have to relearn how to survive. 



With thanks to radioecoshock.org.

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