Despite my occasional disparaging word towards Glen Beck, by and large he is pretty entertaining once he gets up a head of steam about something ( unless he suddenly veers into Bible Thumping mode ). Last night he got going on the lies disguised as statistics on the unemployment rate. Which is where the entertainment part came in, as I always am tickled pink when someone just now learns that the government is dishonest and seeking ways to destroy you. Wow! Talk about slow learners. I mean, Rain Man learned the best place to buy underwear long before that and he ain’t the sharpest marble in the bag. An inbred dog dumped on his head at birth and fed crack cocaine can be taught toilet training quicker than that. The government is all about humping you, and not in a good way. They won’t buy you flowers and dinner, wine and dine you. No, they knock you over the head, tie you up, wait until you regain consciousness and then violate you anally without lubrication. How does someone reach middle age without learning that lesson? How sheltered do you have to be? Anyway, our little buddy Glen is flabbergasted that the roles of underemployed folks are not included in the statistics. As he breathlessly explained, if the numbers of Americans unemployed and underemployed combined are approaching that of the Great Depression, we are serious trouble. I didn’t catch why he thought this, I only listen when I have the long afternoon drive to the town next door ( well, Spring Creek THINKS it’s a town but I think the Yuppie humps suffer from delusions of grandeur, kind of like Oklahoma thinks it’s a real state compared to Texas [ no offense Okkies, you’re great people, but you do seem to have a misplaced identity crisis with your southern neighbor ] ), but I imagine that since the retail sector is most of the economy, with 25% unable to afford to buy anything than that must mean the economy is in more trouble than admitted. Me, I just see this as a natural downward progression and inevitable.
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Then, that evening The Arch Druid Dude is talking about almost the same thing. Druid Dude wouldn’t admit to a fast collapse if he was bubbling away in a stewpot, but he nonetheless does have valuable insights most of the time. Inevitable, in an economic contraction, your purchasing power declines. You are able to buy less and less. Hence, it makes more sense that one of you in a marriage or modern equivalent of shack-ups NOT work and become a homemaker. If fuel and food continue their inevitable climb it follows that the less food you need to buy and the less commuting you do, the better off. While right now the benefits from a one income household are more intangible ( less stress, better child raising, etc. ) than a clear cut economic advantage, but that is bound to flip-flop soon enough. I understand that you bitches think working for The Man makes you independent and all empowered, but you’ve just traded one master for the other. And with the decline in energy will come the decline of your power. Petroleum is the only thing keeping you from inequality, and that has a short time left indeed. Now, saying that doesn’t automatically disqualify you from being the household breadwinner. I wouldn’t want to be the guy surrendering my testicles and putting on an apron, but realistically speaking in today’s job market a lot of time the female is more likely to land and/or keep her job. Sad, but what are you going to do? If I were a guy and I couldn’t work but my wife could, I guess a giant amount of sucking up would be in order and I’d start pursuing the cookbooks for crockpot meals and reading up on raising chickens.
I’m not disparaging housework. Like the Druid, I understand how vital it is once petroleum no longer does most of it. If you aren’t earning money, how else are you going to heat your hovel other than by gathering firewood? How are you going to have clothes other than have a spinner and weaver making them? Who will cook everything from scratch when there are longer any grocery stores? The main thing we should take away from this is that as the economy continues to contract, more and more of us are going to be unemployed. But let’s not focus on that because God forbid you might have to think about living beneath your exalted station in life that incorporates SUV’s and mortgages. But there is a very good possibility that your family unit is going to be underemployed by an uncomfortable margin. One of you might lose their job, or both of you might have their hours cut. Prepping for the collapse isn’t just about caching MRE’s in your concrete bunker next to your arsenal. It is also about recognizing when you must downgrade your expectations. And a very unreal expectation is that you can continue to earn a large salary. Between inflation, corporate downsizing, government employment being slashed or eliminated and other already established trends, odds are good you will be making far less than you expect very soon. So not only is it suicide to put off eliminating debt, or keeping the spouse employed, it is stupid to delay stockpiling. I know it seems impossible to simultaneously pay off the house and credit cards, go from two salaries to one, stockpile for the collapse and go from a moneyed household to a self-sustaining one, but it isn’t about lack of resources as much as it is about lack of will making the hard choices.
You can walk away from the house and the car and the job in the city, declare bankruptcy and sell all your geegaws on E-Bay and Amazon, pay cash for junk land and earn a casual income which takes care of all your needs with surplus. You just need the will to make the change. But you won’t. You’ll wait for downsizing and pink slips, and be homeless. And divorced, with a alimony enforced by jack-booted thugs if you work or not. And all your geegaws were long ago sold to pay the last house payment or two so you have no resources. You’ll get to the same place one way or another. It is your choice if it is voluntary and under your control ( a little pain now or a lot later on ).
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