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How A Country Dies

Tyler Durden's picture


Orighinally posted at Economic Noise blog,

A country dies slowly.

Those living during the decline of Rome were likely unaware that anything was happening. The decline took over a couple of hundred years. Anyone living during the decline only saw a small part of what was happening and likely never noticed it as anything other than ordinary.

Countries don’t have genetically determined life spans. Nor do they die quickly, unless the cataclysm of some great war does them in. Even in such extreme cases, there are usually warning signs, which are more obvious in hindsight than at the time.

Few citizens of a dying nation recognize the signs. Most are too busy trying to live their lives, sometimes not an easy task.  If death occupies their mind, it is with respect to themselves, a relative or a friend. Most cannot conceive of the death of a nation.

A Country Dies Slowly First

For those interested, signs or symptoms precede death for a country often as they do for a person. There is a pattern that involves the following:

1. The Economy

Economically, people become poorer. It becomes harder to feed a family. Economic growth stalls and then reverses. Work opportunities decline. Disincentives to work rise as government tries to ease the burden on the unemployed and lower skilled. These efforts require more revenues which means higher taxes or debt financing. Disincentives to create jobs are magnified by attempts to address the problem. Higher taxes and other burdens are imposed on the productive making work less attractive.

The response should not be surprising. Capital flees first. It goes to areas where adequate returns are still available. Jobs are created but not in the host country. Finally a “brain drain” begins. Talented people leave the country for places that offer greater opportunity. In the case of the US, to escape US taxes these people must renounce their citizenship. Citizenship renouncements are currently at the highest levels in the history.

The flight of capital, both real and human, further  lowers standards of living. Signs of stagnation become more apparent. They may begin as seemingly benign as roads which have too many potholes. “For rent” signs are seen more frequently. Classified job ads  decrease. “Going out of Business” sales are no longer marketing gimmicks.

Initially, people dig into their savings or begin to borrow in order to retain their standard of living. Most believe it is a temporary situation. Eventually bankruptcies increase. Strip or full malls close. Large areas like Detroit become close to uninhabitable.

These conditions characterize the beginnings of the decline. As the decline continues, things get much worse.

2. The State

The State is threatened by a decline. Generally it moves into full pretend mode. Three behavioral traits characterize its behavior. The State must convince citizens:

  1. things are not as bad as they seem.
  2. the State is not responsible for the situation.
  3.  the State must do more (grow bigger) in order to solve the problems.

Statistics issued by the State are fudged to convey a false image of well-being. Government spending soars in an effort to juice reported economic activity. Much of the spending is unproductive in terms of providing things that would have otherwise been bought. It is also counterproductive to a proper functioning economy as price discovery is disrupted and consumer and investment decisions are based on false signals.

Incentives are  provided to encourage people to live beyond their means.  Debt appears nearly free and readily available. Bubbles occur and then burst. New bubbles are necessary to replace old bubbles. People and businesses are encouraged to make imprudent decisions, all in the attempt to make the economy appear better.

The State has one objective and that is to remain in power. Laws and regulations  multiply at ever faster rates. Tyrannical rules and legislation are passed under the pretense of protecting the people against some threat. In reality, these laws are passed to protect the leaders against the public when they finally understand what has been done to them.

“Bread and circuses” increase to divert peoples attention from the developing problems. Dependency increases reflecting an attempt to placate the masses. A “wag the dog” war or crisis is often used as a means to rally the public against some phony enemy.

3. Society

Society becomes coarsens as this process progresses. People increasingly are unable to provide properly for their families. Some desperately turn to unethical behavior, even criminal acts.   Common decency declines.

The regulations imposed from above reduce the sphere of voluntary interactions between people. The government decides more and more what you must do, when and how you must do it. What you can say comes under attack. Finally how you must live is increasingly determined.

Free markets are slowly replaced by a command and control ordering of society. Coercion displaces freedom as the coordinating force for society. People increasingly do what they must rather than what they want.

Interest groups, i.e. politically preferred constituents, created in good times don’t demand less when there is less available. The inability to meet their demands creates political strife and eventually civil problems. Honoring their demands divides society even more. Not honoring demands may produce rioting and civil unrest.

Societybecomes increasingly divided in terms of the “makers” and the “takers.”  As the takers grow in numbers, the makers shrink in numbers. Soon the parasites overwhelm the productive. Society collapses at that point.

Are The People Aware?

The United States, the once beacon of freedom and wealth, shows advanced deterioration  in all three areas above. The rate of deterioration is accelerating. To paraphrase Ernest Hemingway’s response to a bankruptcy question:

How did your country die? Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.

Do people understand what is happening to them and their country? I suspect they are not aware of the full consequences. Most people are not trained to think in these terms, nor should they be. For most of us, it is a chore to get through each day. That is true of the dullards and the brilliant, for most of us end up at levels that tax our abilities.

People sense there is something wrong even though they may be unable to identify what that something might be. Many probably believe that whatever is happening is temporary, sort of like an economic slowdown that reverts back to normal. For them, it is tighten the belt until the good times return.

The results from a recent Gallup poll are interesting and illustrate the increasing dissatisfaction:


Numerous observations could be made regarding many of these institutions. All have decreased in favorability. Gallup was definitive in this regard:

The current 7% of Americans who place confidence in Congress is the lowest of the 17 institutions Gallup measured this year, and is the lowest Gallup has ever found for any of these institutions. The dearth of public confidence in their elected leaders on Capitol Hill is yet another sign of the challenges that could face incumbents in 2014′s midterm elections — as well as more broadly a challenge to the broad underpinnings of the nation’s representative democratic system.

The  poll is not a direct measure of the health of the nation. However, it provides a very negative composite of public satisfaction.  People know they are unhappy even if they don’t know the cause of their unhappiness.

This confusion and distrust always  precedes the death of a nation.


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Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:27 | 4882871 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

The US has a ways to go....

The UK is the frontunner, at least Italy can feed itself...

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:32 | 4882885 magnetosphere
magnetosphere's picture

japan will give the brits a run for their money

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:38 | 4882904 max2205
max2205's picture

You are only alive as an adult for about 30 years (30-60) then old age hits

A limited time to effect events as most of your time is spent trying to stay afloat or get ahead.


A blink of an eye in grandest terms.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:42 | 4882917 COSMOS
COSMOS's picture

I dont know about dying slowly.  The federal govt has sure bought a lot of ammo to make sure lots of people die quickly when the time comes.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:57 | 4882936 jbvtme
jbvtme's picture

we are going from post industrial to trans human in a flash. no thought, no planning, no theorizing or contemplation. two hundred years ago we lived. today we survive (thanks chief joseph). this is not the usa's problem. it's happening planet wide.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:11 | 4882987 jbvtme
jbvtme's picture

btw...during what period was this country ever great? indian genocide, slavery, exploitation of immigrants and factory workers, trashing the environment, wars, wars, wars, assassinations, political intrigue, debauched media, brainwashing in schools, fake moon landings, pedophelia, socialism, darwinism...there is barely a spiritual bone in the body of this wretched country ruled by reptilian reprobates spawned from the bottom of the gene pool who have floated like excrement to the top of the food chain. we have trashed this planet. i pray the mother ship shows us no mercy!

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:15 | 4883000 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture


There is a lot of blood on damn well near everyones hands...

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:37 | 4883092 whotookmyalias
whotookmyalias's picture

A country dies by allowing greed to create a fiat currency and its citizens becoming self absorbed.  Cliff notes version.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:41 | 4883104 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

You got it half right, sortof...

No one was going to tell the American people that they couldn't have their oil.....

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:33 | 4883235 Monty Burns
Monty Burns's picture

This article purports to discern trends that cause/indicate a country's impending death and then applies them to the USSA.  But it's not convincing.  Seems to me that he takes what he sees what's happening to America and then retrofits this into a general theory of national death.  There's no evidence from other countries which allegedly went through this transition.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:43 | 4883274 Vampyroteuthis ...
Vampyroteuthis infernalis's picture

People increasingly do what they must rather than what they want.

Sorry to break it to you, but this has always been the case for the poor and lower classes.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 04:41 | 4884810 MeMadMax
MeMadMax's picture

@ Monty Burns.

Yes we do.


Mon, 06/23/2014 - 10:14 | 4885380 TerminalDebt
TerminalDebt's picture

We need to find those 35 govmint workers that have confidence in Congress and take away their government money.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:34 | 4883240 whotookmyalias
whotookmyalias's picture

The average American doesn't give a shit who runs the country, who lines whose pockets, and what the real economic outlook is.  They will bitch, but they won't do anything about it other than convince themselves voting for a slightly different colored wolf makes a difference.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:26 | 4883386 Dutch
Dutch's picture

A country dies when the ability to forcibly take things from one person, and give them to another, is effected by force by the "authorities", and people are brainwashed into thinking that it is normal and just. The "takers" get aggressive and the "makers" skip out.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 23:53 | 4884594 RECISION
RECISION's picture

States, Nations and Societies fall when there isn’t anyone left who is interested in fighting for them any more.     (link to: Recision)


Some people are productive.

Those who are not, will prey on them…

In one way or another.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 00:40 | 4884651 Anusocracy
Anusocracy's picture

Because for millions of years survival benefited from having enough functioning warm bodies. It didn't matter if they were killers and thieves - as long as they were good at killing, or stealing from, members of a neighboring tribe.

Now, with 7+ billion people and the tribes all jumbled together, most decent people can't overcome that totally unnecessary survival adaptation and exclude all the savages from society.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 05:45 | 4884845 conscious being
conscious being's picture

When I was a kid growing up in the USA (We did not call it the Homeland back then) war movies and shows were on all the time.

Taking at gun point, as long as the taking happened outside the big px, outside the Homeland, was advertised as a noble profession.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:46 | 4883118 Omegaman2211
Omegaman2211's picture

Not mine.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:30 | 4883230 Omegaman2211
Omegaman2211's picture

You do not get to refer to anyone else here as a troll.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 19:08 | 4883951 teslaberry
teslaberry's picture

and this is the great question of ethics. 


no HOUSE , let alone GREAT HOUSE, let alone moreso CITYSTATE, let alone moreson EMPIRE was built without some form of agressive violence, at the very least as a miscalculation of the necessary amount of force to use to keep other agressors at bay, by projecting an image of strength by shanking another city or nation state to look tough, or to teach them  a lesson. 


the larger the empire the more violence, almost by necessity. 


so no empire can ever be considered an ethical entity. and yet somehow----the idea of stopping world war through global government remains an appealing fantasy about mankind taking the necessary steps to end fighting. 


it seems that the more we try to stop fighting , the more we fight, no?

but if accepting war is unethical, and the pursuit of peace is an unthethical lie making the outcomes of war even more violent, than is 'peace' in itself a paradox?

the paradox of peace. we had to burn the village down to save it.

there is no such thing as peace, there are men with ideas of utopianized systems of order seeking to have their vision imposed upon many people, and of course, all of these utopias are apparently devoid of violence. that does not make them peaceful utopias.

brave new blablabla.....

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 00:50 | 4884664 Anusocracy
Anusocracy's picture

Government is the symptom, the people who enable government are the disease.

The problem is that they can't understand that.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 08:52 | 4885101 Weisshaupt
Weisshaupt's picture

" "It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!""-Upton Sinclair. 

They want thier citizen snacks.  They don't care who is held at govt gunpoint to provide them ( and it could never be them, could it?)

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:21 | 4883019 cpnscarlet
cpnscarlet's picture

A Vapid statement to say the least.

For your standard, nobaody and no country was ever great. And on the scale of perfection, you're right (there's a theological statement there). But if you DO expect perfection when humans are involved, you will be a bit dissapointed, then greatly dissapointed. Think about that when the shoe is on the other foot and some being (and He won't be on some mothership) will be judging your lack of greatness.

And if you really think the moon landings were fake, you're depriving yourself of an opportunity to be proud of one of the greatest things mankind ever did. I pity you in your cycnical ignorance of a true endeavour with a great success.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:30 | 4883041 jbvtme
jbvtme's picture

the moon landings were filmed in stanley kubrick's studio. you're a bit behind the times, fratboy

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:43 | 4883112 RevRex
RevRex's picture

One of the "DREAMS" FROM MY FATHER" that Obama often thinks about is how to kill off America as quickly as possible.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:15 | 4883177 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

Have you heard the term Hedgetard?

People that post shit like you just did are known as Hedgetards...

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:26 | 4883211 SilverCoinLover
SilverCoinLover's picture

Hedgetards! Love it! I feel much better now.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:26 | 4883214 jbvtme
jbvtme's picture

you're in a battle of wits unarmed, goatboy. indian genocide, slavery, political assassinations, exploitation of workers...ease my misguided mind.  what has this country done that would define it as being great? (gotta go out for a couple.  take your time). why didn't russia go to the moon? or anyone else for that matter?

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:08 | 4883341 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

Because they couldn't....

Now run along Hedgetard....

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:56 | 4883464 BLOTTO
BLOTTO's picture

I think its because the Russians commodore64 computer wasnt working as well as the US...

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 16:15 | 4883501 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

Wasn't that the Commissar64?

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 08:58 | 4885114 Weisshaupt
Weisshaupt's picture

So go on and give us an example of a "Great Nation" -
I understand that criticizing others lets you feel some personal sense of moral Superiority, and that is the reason you do it. But your inflated ego aside, what would you laud as an example of a "Great Nation"?

If no Nation is great, America is hardly exception in this regard, correct? Of course, you are probably the sort that thinks "if only I were in charge, I would bully, persecute and slaughter them into being Great" - because the self-righteous totalitarian despot is the hallmark of the left.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 06:03 | 4884852 conscious being
conscious being's picture

Flakmeister - I checked the link and I'm shocked to say I agree with you.

Yes the moon landings were fake.  Many holes in the story, but the link is a disinformatin hit piece that starts out takking about 1943 Nazi flying saucers!?!  Didn't we bomb the bridges at Toko Ri with a couple of those?

Do us all a favor Flak and stop yourself from taking the ad homonim approach.  Do it for the Hedge, Flak.  You'll be doing your part to improve the Hedge experience.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 09:01 | 4885121 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

It's called acccountability in a "public" forum, one reason why this country is fucked is when people say bat shit crazy things that are hardly called ever out for it...

In case you haven't noticed, I restrict using the term to matters of science denialism and the like. There are still plenty of whackadoo sites where they can discuss can faked moon landing, creationism, AGW denialism, Tesla free energy, abiotic oil and bask in the resulting echo.... 

Not here though...

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 09:08 | 4885137 Ghordius
Ghordius's picture

Flakmeister... thanks for that


                      "Everybody ought to be entitled to his own opinion. But not to his own facts"

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 10:40 | 4885486 detached.amusement
detached.amusement's picture

As usual, get on to your agw jackoff fantasy hoping el nino will save some face for the models and everyone just tunes you right the fug out.  I'd like to get you to just say you will eat your hat (you dont have to include the metal and plastic) when the sham's finally done and there's nothing not even hot air or bad model assertions for them to stand on and they finally admit there was no real justification for the AGW crusade in the first place.  (I'm all for cleaning up actual pollutants, mind you.) 

You can upload it to youtube and post it here on ZH for everyone's entertainment.  Condiments optional.


Mon, 06/23/2014 - 12:11 | 4885831 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

May 2014....

Hottest May on record....

I'll order some crow for you, if you like...

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 06:15 | 4884861 Crazy Or Not
Crazy Or Not's picture

I LOVE "Hedgetard" - one for Urban Dictionary perhaps? Certainly added to my vanacular.

This article and the ISIS execution of the hangman of CIA (gone rouge)  Mid East henchman.... reflects perhaps a new hotting up to the next phase of the game.

For the Buckling of Europe we may have to wait til the first frosts of winter and us Europhiles start to choke on our Gaz(prom) bill.....which after being rinsed though the "blame game" machine will coral the mainstreamers ever onwards to battle with Ronald's massing "evil empire".

Notice the current use of the "military advisor" box.
Siezure of IT gear from RT by Israel.
We are going Dark.
I will say no more for now.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:23 | 4883202 SilverCoinLover
SilverCoinLover's picture



You'll probably reply saying you're not a flat earther...I don't care, you still believe what they believe regarding the Apollo program. Guilt by association rules.



Mon, 06/23/2014 - 06:26 | 4884867 conscious being
conscious being's picture

Put up or shut up.  See comment to Flakmeister above re. Ad homonim attacks are useless.  Like yelling fighting words in an echo chamber.

Now, did you know that the lunar lander cockpit was framed in ... mylar ... plastic sheets!?!  Lack of dust on lander, landing pads in photos, no real protection from solar radiation for humans or the rolls of film.  Which is the real reason nobody is going "back".  Nobody's going to Mars either for the same reason.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 06:46 | 4884871 conscious being
conscious being's picture

BTW mr screaming all in caps above - did you know that NASA SOMEHOW LOST ALL, YES ALL THE ORIGINAL, ANALOG APPOLLO MOON TAPES??

Did you know that?

Look it up.  Its true.

They're in a box some where ... with LOIS LERNER'S HARD DRIVE.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:33 | 4883239 TheReplacement
TheReplacement's picture

And all of the astronauts, ground crews, mission control crews, and management kept quiet until they died. 

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 01:40 | 4884721 Real Estate Geek
Real Estate Geek's picture

. . . and the Soviets.  Riiiight.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 07:06 | 4884876 conscious being
conscious being's picture

"kept quiet until they died. 

Interesting that in a post-Snowden world, you still want to use that argument.

How many kept quiet about pervasive NSA spying on the American people in breach of the 4th, for decades ... until they died?

How many actually knew what was going on?

As far as those that did know, like the Appollo astronauts, where is Neil?



Mon, 06/23/2014 - 07:51 | 4884949 jbvtme
jbvtme's picture  one small step for man or was it a mis step

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:07 | 4883338 RafterManFMJ
RafterManFMJ's picture

One thing I dearly love about all the original video and audio "Moon Landings" video.

NASA claims they lost them.

"We put them by the toaster oven, then when we went to get them, damn, they was gone!"

I actually find it funny at this point all the ridiculous bullshit we get fire-hose fed. I find it funnier that the average rube doesn't even have the framework to sift the runny .gov shit for the occasional kidney stone of truth.

Nor do they care.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:16 | 4883357 Dick Buttkiss
Dick Buttkiss's picture

OK, let's move on to something that was both real and staged:

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 16:44 | 4883542 BLOTTO
BLOTTO's picture

How does one believe anything spewed by the illuminati controlled mainstream media after 9/11?

Not only did 9/11 put series doubts on anything significant 'they' tell us presently - it puts past events even more in the spot light about the true nature of them when the stories were already flawed in some way in the first place.


How do you not believe the official 9/11 story by the government, but believe their version of the moon landing, Titanic, ww1, etc...?

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 17:51 | 4883744 cpnscarlet
cpnscarlet's picture

Now it's Kubrick? Oh, that is rich! Some people will believe anything - whether it's government propaganda or trailer-park conspiracy theories.

So how did the retro-reflectors get on the moon?

LRO just radio backed some data. The message is "You're an A-hole".

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 06:58 | 4884892 conscious being
conscious being's picture

Great scam.  Here's how it works.  You don't need no reflectors!!

Shoot the moon with the laser and the photons bounce back.  Voila!


Mon, 06/23/2014 - 09:05 | 4885124 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

Yep, sure thing, whatever...

Tue, 06/24/2014 - 22:05 | 4891797 Abbie Normal
Abbie Normal's picture

The lunar rover is the real smoking gun.  Despite NASA's explanation at the time, there is no way that a ladder-frame based vehicle fit inside the already cramped lunar module and then was assembled on the moon -- unless the lunar module had Tardis-type storage capabilities.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:42 | 4883109 Omegaman2211
Omegaman2211's picture

Perfection is anarchocapitalism.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 20:48 | 4883394 Dick Buttkiss
Dick Buttkiss's picture

Anarchocapitalism is without doubt the least marketable term for a stateless society that one can imagine.  It has about as much chance of being accepted by the general public as a return of this product:

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 08:18 | 4885004 ChiefToledo
ChiefToledo's picture

In 2000 I spent 2 weeks in North Korea overseeing a delivery of grain. America didn't seem so bad after that. In fact, it looked great!

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:19 | 4883194 Smegley Wanxalot
Smegley Wanxalot's picture

The good thing about all that ammo Uncle Sam will kill us with is that we wont have to see society decline.  In the empty mind of a bureaucrat, they are doing us a favor.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:37 | 4883253 whotookmyalias
whotookmyalias's picture

It's not as bad as you think. They are switching to lead free ammo.



Mon, 06/23/2014 - 11:33 | 4885664 DanDaley
DanDaley's picture

It's called killing with kindness.  If you have to get shot by the government, and you do, you can feel good about it.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:02 | 4883325 TVP
TVP's picture

" Millions of Americans will be slaughtered in the streets by their own government after being labeled “terrorists”.              Don’t think it will ever happen?             Neither did the people of Ukraine.             And that puppet government is not some strange foreign entity in a far-away land. " -

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 06:03 | 4884855 Eirik Magnus Larssen
Eirik Magnus Larssen's picture

One has to love the irony.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:10 | 4882984 LostandFound
LostandFound's picture

Japan, then US, then UK

Although the worst we will see, will be in the US, the greater you are, the greater you fall. 

These will be extremely sad times for many people, i wish people would wake the fuck up.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 18:52 | 4883903 Seer
Seer's picture

UK?  It doesn't have any resources, AND, it's a fucking island!

Toss out all the paper shit and look at it from a phyisical resources standpoint.  Comes down to US, Canada and Russia; these are the top three resource-endowed countries on the planet.  Yes, they're all burning through the resources, but when the NWO/OWG goal/plan blows up the bottom of global trade falls out and it'll then be pretty much every county existing on what it has.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 16:37 | 4885537 Loose Caboose
Loose Caboose's picture


Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:14 | 4883174 PGR88
PGR88's picture

Japan will be around long after the USA is spent, broken up or disappeared. The Japanese present dysfunctional government and political system may change, but the people, language and culture will remain whole as a very distinct and independent nation. The presently dominant elites of the West consider the Japanese "xenophobic," but in fact, the Japanese are built to last.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:43 | 4883272 MrPalladium
MrPalladium's picture


Multiculturalism decreases trust and cohesion and will hasten the demise of what we euphemistically call "Western Civilization".

Welcome to Jean Raspail's "Camp of the Saints."

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:28 | 4883381 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

Remind me again why there's no difference between liberalism and conservatism?  I hear that all the time.  It's all the same my ass, the leftists are destroying western culture and political correctness has everyone brainwashed and sucking their thumb.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 19:01 | 4883941 Seer
Seer's picture

History tends to heavily discount the notion of there being some "system" (ideology) that is able to avoid collapse.

Glubb seems to miss that THE problem in common is that ALL broke down due to insufficient resources brought about by the pursuit of perpetual growth.  Within this document/writing you can see patterns that we are experiencing today- careful to note what is cause and what is effect...

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 19:27 | 4884025 DanDaley
DanDaley's picture

Thanks for the link, Seer...his comprehensive synopsis at the very end looks very familiar -especially Decadence: 


The Age of Decadence.

(e) Decadence is marked by:





An influx of foreigners

The Welfare State

A weakening of religion.

(f) Decadence is due to:

Too long a period of wealth and power


Love of money

The loss of a sense of duty.

(g) The life histories of great states are

amazingly similar, and are due to internal


(h) Their falls are diverse, because they are

largely the result of external causes.

(i) History should be taught as the history

of the human race, though of course with

emphasis on the history of the student’s own


Mon, 06/23/2014 - 01:47 | 4884731 Real Estate Geek
Real Estate Geek's picture

Until we stop them from borrowing money into existance, they'll continue to seek perpetual growth at our expense.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 23:49 | 4884588 MrPalladium
MrPalladium's picture

"Remind me again why there's no difference between liberalism and conservatism?  I hear that all the time.  It's all the same my ass, the leftists are destroying western culture and political correctness has everyone brainwashed and sucking their thumb."

You are right! There is a huge difference between liberalism and conservatism. The problem is that the politicians who mouth counserative views to get elected ultimately vote to continue the metastasis of the welfare state, wasteful imperial wars, the flooding of America with low IQ immigrants, and whatever else the oligarchs funding their campaigns favor.

It all works until a racially homogenous nation with a median IQ at or above 100 such as the Han Chinese (with a rigorous but quiet eugenics program that would have made Hitler hide is head in shame) , the ethnic Russians (with a mild and quiet pro-natal eugenics program) or the Japanese once there their population resets following the two or three generation long genetic flush of Japanese with weak reproductive instincts (following the relaxation of social pressure to reproduce that began 50 years ago) comes along and rips the American empire apart on its home turf by aiding and abetting the division of the country into several nations.

A hedge fund manager friend of mine tells me that a hedge fund manager he communicates with in Los Angeles ardently believes that if we would just give every black in Compton CA a laptop they could all be nuclear physicists. Our oligarchs delude themselves. They have no coherent exit plan and the places that they would pick to hide themselves and their wealth are some of the most porous and vulnerable in the World.

Keep your jaundiced eye. I will keep you safe!

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 18:54 | 4883913 Seer
Seer's picture

Japan's a resource-less fucking SMALL island.

The Japanese aren't breeding.  They're talking about increasing immigration in order to obtain the necessary folks to wipe their old and dying asses.

Xenophobic fucks.  Nature work trhrough diversity (only stupid, xenophobic humans believe otherwise).

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 09:37 | 4885229 Calmyourself
Calmyourself's picture

Lions always appreciate zebras who believe in diversity..  You might be thinking plants surely you cannot mean mammals..

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 11:18 | 4885622 Zerozen
Zerozen's picture

Nature works by EVOLVING diversity (making babies). Nature doesn't have some retarded multiculturalism model of diversity. That's a stupid human invention.

Nature doesn't work by having colonies of meerkats adopt iguanas and having the iguanas think they are meerkat citizens and mostly live on the backs of the meerkats (3rd world immigration into the 1st world).

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:24 | 4883380 bwh1214
bwh1214's picture

My bet is on Japan as well.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:34 | 4882892 DoChenRollingBearing
DoChenRollingBearing's picture



Bill Bonner has written of this, that one can enjoy an entire adult life, and just watch life's parade go by...

But, to do anything about arresting a national decline, that is very hard.  And the bad news is: it is people like us who must do the work.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:46 | 4882927 saints51
saints51's picture

People like us have always been the last line of defense. We are alone in the final hour.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:20 | 4883376 stacking12321
stacking12321's picture

not sure i agree, dcrb.

it's not necessary or desirable to stop it.

if you see an avalance starting, you don't go running up to it to try and stop it - you get out of its way, let it do its thing, sweep away what it needs to sweep away, and then if you're so inclined afterwards go help out the survivors and help rebuild.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:53 | 4883454 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

It's not an avalanche.  It's a ship on fire with you on it.  Putting out the fire and throwing the arsonist overboard is what needs to be done.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 16:06 | 4883487 stacking12321
stacking12321's picture

sorry, but i'm not on that ship!

dcrb was discussing a national decline - there are other nations where one can live.

the die has already been cast, events set in motion - the disaster is already unfolding, there's no avoiding it at this point, it's just a matter of mitigating the disaster for yourself and those around you.

i believe one's energy is put to better use in preparing oneself and surviving what's coming, than to try to prevent the inevitable, which can't even be done.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 16:25 | 4883531 Harbanger
Harbanger's picture

Oh you are on this ship whether you like it or not.  There's no question the dollar will collapse, it's being done on purpose and will lead to inevitable wars when other currencies collapse like dominos.  Don't expect other Nations to be safe havens.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 16:43 | 4883564 stacking12321
stacking12321's picture

i agree with most of that, except that "safe" is very much a relative term. and safety is not found in nations, per se.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 19:05 | 4883950 Seer
Seer's picture

" And the bad news is: it is people like us who must do the work."

Human hubris.  THE issue is growth- perpetual growth.  If one is striving to produce more and more then, by default, one is actually doing more harm than good.

People really ought to understand the exponential function.  Math idiots can down-vote me, but that doesn't absolve you of your math ignorance (and, really, here in an economics blog you don't know what the exponential function is and what it means for growth?).

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 11:04 | 4885575 Almost Solvent
Almost Solvent's picture

Exponential function is an absolute bitch!

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:46 | 4882923 agent default
agent default's picture

" Italy can feed itself" 

You  make an interesting point in terms of the European South.  The Mediterranean countries are certainly self sufficient in many aspects.  They could really do without all this central banking nonsense and keep going, without turning into hellholes for the sake of the Euro or some other central banking scam.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 22:52 | 4884454 TBT or not TBT
TBT or not TBT's picture

Yes, people living in what we call Italy are blessed with good weather for agriculture, BUT, will those people be Italian?   No.  Their demographics are terrible.  But they have plenty of African immigrants who know how to get their women bred and keep them that way.  

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 11:22 | 4885633 Zerozen
Zerozen's picture

You must be thinking of England or France.

Italy has hardly any Africans, and they're generally despised. As times get harder, they will become more despised - when there's less to go around, people suddenly aren't friendly any more.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 13:04 | 4886035 trader1
trader1's picture

so are you one of those people that doesn't consider mario balotelli an "italian"?

what does it mean to be "italian"?

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:34 | 4883078 Carpenter1
Carpenter1's picture

One word for you:



The UK won't go without taking a few with it, and those few will take another few........

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:36 | 4883249 TheReplacement
TheReplacement's picture

They won't take Mexico down.  More like Mexico is waiting there already so they don't have to suffer a decline, which is nice.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 19:51 | 4884059 Uchtdorf
Uchtdorf's picture

I'm in MTY, MX, on business right now and just yesterday I was thinking that many Mexicans will suffer when the economy crashes, but not nearly as much as their northern neighbors.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 19:06 | 4883956 Seer
Seer's picture

Globalization is dead.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 22:53 | 4884458 TBT or not TBT
TBT or not TBT's picture

Last time it died was in 1914.  

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:40 | 4883103 Omegaman2211
Omegaman2211's picture

The sooner the better.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:25 | 4883209 Jack Burton
Jack Burton's picture

UK is in full pretend mode right now. Printing pound sterling and BoE buying guilts. They pretend to be having good economic growth, but it is all a real estate bubble, much of it from foreigners seeking a UK safe haven as nations around the world melt down. "Help to Buy" in which government pays your downpayments also boost property prices. Government policy is built around Housing as the main Uk economic factor and the Financial Engineering and Banking in the City of London is seen as factor number two. When finance capital has a crisis, and it will, the UK sinks like a stone!

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:38 | 4883255 TheReplacement
TheReplacement's picture

Gather all the rats in one location and poof.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 21:16 | 4884242 Dick Buttkiss
Dick Buttkiss's picture

Well, if you mean this location — — consider it done.

By its own hand.

And soon.

Just don't get caught up in the poofing.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 18:21 | 4883817 BigJim
BigJim's picture

The UK is - along with NYC - ground zero of the ponzi. The Fed will bail out the UK... until it can't.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 19:09 | 4883967 Seer
Seer's picture

The "bailing out" will mean actual PHYSICAL resources.  As the USD continues to lose its hold as reserve currency the Fed becomes more and more powerless.  UK will be on its own: we'll see how much gold those bankers have stuffed away.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 10:40 | 4885485 Oldrepublic
Oldrepublic's picture

The real religion in the Uk is the worship of House prices

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:22 | 4883373 Down to Earth T...
Down to Earth Thinking's picture

@ Flak meister 2871  But you are discounting or not considering the many outlier events ? And one will tip it all over . Perhaps sooner than any realize. Nobody here can actually account for all the outlier evenst now present and simply waiting for the right circumstance to arise.

The end and reset has already started, but few grasp it because of cog dis and normalcy bias so present in our society, and yes even here at ZH !

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:28 | 4883395 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

The US does not die until the USD loses convertability into imported oil...

What happens then is anyone's guess, I see it splitting like a ripe melon. YMMV....

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 07:24 | 4884913 Tall Tom
Tall Tom's picture



Stop being a bitch. The USA is also well able to feed herself you lying,  fucking cunt.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 10:02 | 4885337 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

No one was questioning that....

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:33 | 4882872 AlaricBalth
AlaricBalth's picture

Most people are unaware because the State wants it that way.

"Never again will you be capable of ordinary human feeling. Everything will be dead inside you. Never again will you be capable of love, or friendship, or joy of living, or laughter, or curiosity, or courage, or integrity. You will be hollow. We shall squeeze you empty and then we shall fill you with ourselves.“ – George Orwell

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:46 | 4882926 NidStyles
NidStyles's picture

That is the perfect sociolist man by definition. Nothing but a shell of automation.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 22:56 | 4884468 TBT or not TBT
TBT or not TBT's picture

We were promised long term funemployment.  Not emptiness.   Pelosi lied, people got empty inside. 

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:00 | 4882958 Al Huxley
Al Huxley's picture

Orwell really had a way with words - he leaves absolutely no room for hope or optimism in that book.  I read 1984 a long time ago, and the message stuck with me, but it wasn't until I reread it quite recently that I remembered the truly soul-crushing picture he paints.  Anybody who hasn't read it, you really should read it - if nothing else, at least you'll recognize and understand the gradual evolution of the society around you.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:28 | 4883399 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

Huxley was closer to what has really happened...

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 22:54 | 4884461 Semi-employed W...
Semi-employed White Guy's picture

Yes, but over the last couple of years, Orwell is starting to catch up.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 07:29 | 4884918 Tall Tom
Tall Tom's picture



This is no Brave New World, you bitch.


This is an Orewellian nightmare.


Just when are you going to be honest enough to admit that you are a woman?

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 19:12 | 4883981 Seer
Seer's picture

Dr. Albert Bartlett's non-ficiton works are a LOT scarier.  Can't beat the numbers.  Math, the exponential function, has had our end(s) dialed in from the get-go.

Another great non-fiction work is that from Sir John Glubb (quick read):

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 20:38 | 4884148 TuPhat
TuPhat's picture

The club of Rome did that math years ago.   According to the numbers the world ended about 1995.  The equations didn't lie but people came up with new rescources and changed the variables.  Some of us will change and survive in spite of the math.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 00:17 | 4884622 Flakmeister
Flakmeister's picture

You may heard of it, but you  certainly didn't read it...

1995? You are making shit up...

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:28 | 4882874 -.-
-.-'s picture


Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:30 | 4882880 ejmoosa
ejmoosa's picture

And yet your Congressman and your Senator are more likely than not to win reelection because you are more likely to vote for them than to vote for real change.


More than likely, You are the problem.


Join the the growing minority and vote against ALL incumbents.  

I'll work to get mine gone and I hope that you do the same.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:56 | 4882952 Chuck Knoblauch
Chuck Knoblauch's picture

Look past the ideology.

It's only used to differentiate between 2 products.



Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:01 | 4882964 Al Huxley
Al Huxley's picture

Unfortunately you can only choose between Kang and Kodos.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:04 | 4882970 ejmoosa
ejmoosa's picture

Are there no third party candidates on your ballots?




Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:35 | 4883084 Al Huxley
Al Huxley's picture

'I believe I'll vote for a third party candidate'

'Sure, go ahead, waste your vote HA HA HA'

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:29 | 4883400 ejmoosa
ejmoosa's picture

You mean like those wasted votes for McCain and Romney?  


You know how you can tell those were wasted votes?  The Republican Party thinks you liked those candidates, and have insisted on offering you more of the same going forward.



Sun, 06/22/2014 - 19:18 | 4883999 Seer
Seer's picture

You're assuming that you KNOW the problem- YOU DO NOT.

"The chief cause of problems is solutions."  -- Eric Sevareid

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 11:58 | 4885770 DanDaley
DanDaley's picture

Great quote by Sevareid.  


Works like this: The Democrats so-called Great Society, War on Poverty, bussing, set-asides, affirmative action, and all other preferrential protected-class solutions would not have been needed (or even thought to be needed) if they hadn't fucked everything up for blacks in the first instance by creating segregation via the 1896 Supreme Court case Plessy vs Ferguson. Then, of course, the Republicans have to run too, us too! Makes you want to throw up.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 21:35 | 4884275 Al Huxley
Al Huxley's picture

I'm guessing you didn't catch the Simpsons Halloween episode years back.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:43 | 4883113 Omegaman2211
Omegaman2211's picture

Why would anyone even bother voting in the first place?

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:19 | 4883195 Bad Attitude
Bad Attitude's picture

Voting can still matter in local elections, even if the federal elections are non-competative/fixed/rigged.

Forward (over the cliff)!

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:29 | 4883224 Omegaman2211
Omegaman2211's picture

Only for local measures. Voting for a person is never worthwhile.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:41 | 4883268 TheReplacement
TheReplacement's picture

Hmm, what could a person do about that? 

Gee I dunno Andy.  What could a body do?

Well Barney, an intelligent individual could maybe consider the possibility that there is an offhand chance that HE might be the one to run.

Now, who is part of the problem?


Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:31 | 4883405 stacking12321
stacking12321's picture

or, one could choose to recognize that the act of voting gives an air of legitimacy to a broken and illegitimate system.

the state is an institution of violence and coercion. it sees people as its property.

i won't vote in any "democratic" process, as democracy is a method by which the majority enforces their tyranny over the minority.

if it's not voluntary, then it's not right, and i won't participate in it.


Sun, 06/22/2014 - 16:36 | 4883554 beaglebog
beaglebog's picture

Really surprising to see so many ZHers advocate participation in the "democratic system".



V  iolate

O  thers

T  hrough

E  xtortion

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 07:30 | 4884923 conscious being
conscious being's picture

HE might be the one to run.

Like Ron Paul and get harrassed and double crossed every step of the way, while your supporters are subjected to special IRS attention.  Or like Ross Perot they have a lot of questions about your daughter's upcoming wedding and what might happen.

If voting changed anything, you wouldn't be allowed to do it.  TPTB ain't going away via the ballot box.

You're kind of the status quo cheer leader these days, aren't you?

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 19:16 | 4883995 Seer
Seer's picture

Sorry, you're trying to solve a problem that you don't understand...

Ideologies, despite what the frothing "free-trade" "capitalist" flagwavers here (the ones who so dead certain that this is all a failure brought about by "socialism"), are of no meaningful determinate of eventual failure.  Scan above for my link to Sir John Glubb's paper on the collapse of empires: 3,000 years worth of failed empires.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 14:46 | 4883281 Monty Burns
Monty Burns's picture

you are more likely to vote for them than to vote for real change.


But how do you vote for real change in America?  You're presented with a choice between Red Pill Tweedledum and Blue Pill Tweedledee.  The Real And Permanent Government rules on regardless.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:35 | 4883412 stacking12321
stacking12321's picture


you vote with your feet.

detach from the system, avoid anything having to do with the government. engage in voluntary-only exchange. avoid dollars, use gold, silver, bitcoin. grow your own food. find other like-minded people you can work with.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 15:23 | 4883383 Down to Earth T...
Down to Earth Thinking's picture

#4882880    me too !

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:33 | 4882886 Magnix
Magnix's picture

Im looking at several properties in Costa Rica to move in....cant wait to get outta of this shithole!

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:05 | 4882973 graneros
graneros's picture

Costa Rica 1 Italy 0  That shocked a bunch of Italians. 


Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:13 | 4882991 CH1
CH1's picture

PLEASE - rent a house there for 6 months before committing to a move.

You don't know till you go.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 16:21 | 4883518 RafterManFMJ
RafterManFMJ's picture

I'd shack with J Willie for those 6 months; perhaps you could help man one of his AAA* emplacements to pay your keep.

*Anti-Alien Artillery

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:15 | 4883001 lincolnsteffens
lincolnsteffens's picture

You had better bring hammer, nails and barbed wire with you. You will need to nail everything down and put razor wire on the top of your wall. And you better not leave your property unattended for too long or you will find it gone.

Other than that, there are plenty of nice folks there.

Oh yeah, if you plan to employ someone for more than a year you had better plan on them working for a lot longer than that. Got a house keeper for a long time? They now go with your property when you try to sell it. Yes the next owner has to keep them working.

Least wise that is what I saw about 20 years ago. Better go rent for a while before making any moves.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:25 | 4883027 COSMOS
COSMOS's picture

I always said New Zealand or Australia best places.  Far removed from all the crap.  Lots of other nice islands in the Pacific Ocean.  Speaking of removed, USA is still nicely isolated and you have Alaska and Canada to boot.  All English speaking areas.  IF you go south maybe going further down to Uruguay or Chile might be an option.

I am always amazed by the number of properties on Sotheby's in New Zealand.  Lots of rich people with swanky get away places there.  Only question is why are there so many turning over?  I can only assume rich old people die and families sell the places to cash out the assets and distribute the money.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 21:53 | 4884313 UselessEater
UselessEater's picture

Australia is very expensive. Our banks are criminally insolvent which will be proven when the derivatives and property bubbles pop. Our nation is very socialist, highly regulated and you must pay, pay, pay for everything often more than once to a local, state or federal body.

Our assets are rapidly being privatized to a new level and while we export coal our electricity prices are one of the highest in the world and going up. It costs me $80AUD to fill up a family car, our supermarkets are a controlled protected duopoly contributing to a decline in food quality and variety masked by pretty packaging.

We've had tighter anti-terrorism banking laws than the rest of the world for years and accepted it, everything is via direct deposits to the bank - cheque books are redundant. Want to buy PMs? Then it must be traceable. Sport shooting? Expect 6 months for the various costly permits/inspections/courses and then deal with the transportation regulations to get to a range.

Have a pool? It must be inspected and re-licensed every two years (expect to pay for constant upgrades). Sell a 2nd hand car? Well you need to pay for a permit every 2 months. Meanwhile in high rainfall areas we have water restriction’s and taxes. Want a say in local and state planning? Expect every minority and special interest group they can conjure to have a government funded and drafted submission ahead of yours.

Various local authorities have the right to enter my property (enviro brown shirts can do a search and seizure inside my house, police often have open-warrants, and local councils keep files notes on residents). I need permission to renovate a lived-in shed (likely to be denied under new planning "laws" but if approved will be taxed as nauseam.)

Over 9% of our gross salary must go to regulated pension (superannuation), fees and regulations increase every year and you can’t touch it until you reach a certain age which increases every year as does the regulatory cost of maintaining your pension fund.

Each year our courts operate on increasing legislation that reverses the onus of proof.

Slow burn as Catherine Austin Fitts says….we have a law and a tax for everything and generations of leeches who scam the system for disability, single parent etc pensions while also speculating in real estate for tax breaks and part-taking in the property bubble; it pays to mooch. Australia is for the passive ostrich or the wealthy.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 22:55 | 4884463 Bohm Squad
Bohm Squad's picture

Wow...that's a bunch of guys should grab your guns and revol.........ohhh....nevermind.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 07:40 | 4884934 conscious being
conscious being's picture

The deal is, the real places are like fight club, you don't talk about.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 13:53 | 4883136 Ayn-UK
Ayn-UK's picture

I have a friend who has been there for five years fighting to get his property back from squatters. They have no property rights there. Panama is a much better bet.

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 10:45 | 4885501 Oldrepublic
Oldrepublic's picture

labor laws are very different in Costa Rica. Hiring at will does not exit

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 19:24 | 4884016 Seer
Seer's picture

Buy low, sell high.

Is Costa Rica low or high?

Are you white?  I'm serious.  WTSHTF any invisible US armor that you think that you might have that's protecting you is... and POOF, it's gone!

My wife is from the Philippines.  I'm safe there NOW.  I'm not foolish enough to believe that WTSHTF that that would hold...  One day the tide turns and it's "kick the American for fun" times (there's a lot more ISIS-like entities out there, xenophbic racist fucks just like a bunch of folks here, who unload on anyone they think is or "was" American): I don't support such action by ANYONE, but, I recognize reality (and I see it all forming).

Mon, 06/23/2014 - 07:46 | 4884944 conscious being
conscious being's picture

Seer - some people carry around a persona that cries out for kicking and some people are pretty dam difficult to kick. Try to be the later, not the former.

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 19:39 | 4884044 Calmyourself
Calmyourself's picture

Costa Rica, ahh yes the country where your vote really counts..

Still all in all, probably no worse than here..

Sun, 06/22/2014 - 12:36 | 4882891 ThroxxOfVron
ThroxxOfVron's picture

IF those numbers are reflective of actual sentiment: a Military Dictatorship is imminent.


edit: Commander In Chief/Executive Orders/Appointment of Czars...  We are almost there...

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!