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Collapse: the way we imagined it, and the way it was.

Collapse: the way we imagined it, and the way it was. thumbnail

 

Even those of us who could see some kind of collapse coming (the “collapsniks”) were taken by surprise by the form it took. But, as always, for everything that happens there has to be a reason for it to happen. Above: the Seneca Curve.

Collapses happen, it is a rule of life, as the ancient Roman philosopher Lucius Seneca had noted long ago when he said that “ruin is rapid” (festinantur in damnum). Yet, another rule of collapses is that they always take you by surprise. I think even Seneca himself was surprised when he received a message from his former pupil, Emperor Nero, ordering him to commit suicide.

So, even the most hardened collapsniks were surprised by the onrush of the coronavirus epidemic. I had been thinking about the collapse that the models predicted but, honestly, I hadn’t imagined it would take this form. Surely, I had in mind that some unexpected shock would have unbalanced society enough to cause it to take the fast way down, but I imagined it mostly in the form of a war. When the Iranian general Soleimani was assassinated by US drones in January, I thought “This is it.” It wasn’t. Nobody could have imagined what would have happened just a couple of months afterward.
https://www.springer.com/us/book/9783030290375
Yet, for everything that happens, there is a reason for it to happen. And there is a reason also for the coronavirus. I noted in my book (Before Collapse) that epidemics hit stressed societies after that they have reached their physical limits. The main example I discuss is that of the “Black Death” that struck Europe in the mid-14th century. It came after the great economic expansion that had led Europeans to try to expand Eastward with the crusades. But, after some initial successes, the crusades turned out to be an expensive failure. So, the Europeans found themselves stuck in a small and overpopulated peninsula of Eurasia, which they had thoroughly deforested. Famines were unavoidable, and then there came the black death. The final result was a loss of some 40% of the population — not pretty, but it had to be.

In our case, we surely are badly in overshoot, but we didn’t see major famines preceding the epidemic. On the contrary (again, a subject discussed in my book) the stupendous military-economic system we call “globalization” made it possible to bring food just about everywhere in the world, preventing famine to occur and allowing an extravagant expansion of the human population. Of course, some people are still undernourished but the world remained famine-free for nearly half a century, a remarkable success. But things are never what they look like: behind this apparent abundance, the seeds for disaster were growing.

Unlike the case of Medieval Europe, in the modern globalized world the weakening factor was not famines, but pollution. It is hard to evaluate exactly how much human health is damaged by the various forms of pollutions that besiege us nowadays. We are continuously exposed to heavy metals, carcinogenic substances, microplastics, reactive gases, and much more, and we add to it an unhealthy diet based on over-processed food grown by means of all sorts of chemicals unknown before in the natural world. That may keep us alive, but it is not good for our health. And the obesity epidemics in the West may be a consequence of this situation.

Just like in ancient collapses, a weakened population tends to decline. In our case, so far the decline was taking mostly the shape of decreasing natality. Not surprisingly, it is happening in the most polluted regions of the world. The rich West is also highly polluted and most Western populations have been going down: mortality increases, natality decreases. The decline is masked by immigration from areas of the world not yet so badly ravaged by pollution, but it is there.

At this point, would you be surprised if an opportunistic virus were to strike a weakened, geriatric population? Not at all, and you wouldn’t be surprised that the coronavirus struck first the most heavily polluted areas of the world: Central China and the Padana Valley in Italy. What’s surprising, actually, is that the epidemic is so mild. The mortality rates are projected by IHME as less than 0.1% in most Western countries. These could be optimistic projections, but surely the COVID-19 is nothing like the old black death! Outside geriatric and industrialized countries, the damage seems to be extremely limited.

What’s surprising, instead, is the reaction of most governments that, arguably, did much more damage to people than the virus itself. I was saying at the beginning that I expected a war to trigger the collapse of the Western Empire. In a sense, it is what happened. The Western Governments saw the virus as an enemy and they started a war against it using the kind of war they know best: a hybrid war based on shock and awe and economic sanctions. By shutting down their economies, Western Governments waged a war against their own citizens, especially against the poor, as always the most vulnerable when something goes wrong.

So, what are we going to see? If the coronavirus was unable to substantially reduce the human population and the consumption of resources, the lockdown may well succeed at that. If it doesn’t, don’t worry! The ecosystem is going to solve the overshoot problem for us, one way or another. We may not be able to predict the details, but not the final outcome. For sure, we won’t stop viruses with such silly ideas as wearing face masks and living in Plexiglas cages.

It is the great cycle of life  — it is the way the universe works. It already happened and it will happen again. And so, I leave you with a modern interpretation of the Medieval Theme of the “Danse Macabre” or “Totentanz” by the Italian singer Angelo Branduardi. Sometimes, death seems to be winning the battle, but it never does. What would Death do without life?

I am Death and wear a crown,
I am for all of you lady and mistress
and I am so cruel, so strong and harsh
that your walls won’t stop me.

I am Death and wear a crown,
I am for all of you lady and mistress
and in front of my scythe you’ll have to bow your head
and walk to the gloomy Death’s pace.

You are the guest of honor at the dance we are playing for you,
put your scythe down and dance round and round
a round of dancing and then one more,
and you’ll be no longer the lady of time.

Cassandra’s legacy



47 Comments on "Collapse: the way we imagined it, and the way it was."

  1. SocialRevolutionComing on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 1:00 pm 

    Death is a deliverance from life. Life is just pain and misery. This is why we have low birth rate through the whole world. Thailand that is part of the Asians tigers also have a low birth rate. Interesting comment on this video and way life is not worth living. Pause the video and jump directly to the comment section.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KYOQ5XMsbIk

    The Danish Physicist
    il y a 7 mois
    The polyanna propagandists are panicking, people are beginning to realise the true horror of this cycle of addiction we are caught in!

  2. SocialRevolutionComing on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 1:09 pm 

    Italy and Whites Western nations have a inverted population pyramid. We are starting to see the effect of having a large population of old people. This will overwhelm the health system and crash it to the ground.

    https://www.populationpyramid.net/italy/

    We have multiples systems now crashing all at the same time. Peak oil, low net energy available, inverted population pyramid with a lot of old people, global cooling, food shortage and so on.

    I see a possibility of the Whites race extinction. It is possible that Whites people in Nordic nations, like Sweden, Finland, Canada will be lock in place during Winter because of total supply chain collapse. Whites people won’t be able to immigrate south because they will lock down by snow and because of the lack of snow removal.

  3. whoa supertards galore on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 1:25 pm 

    SocialRevolutionComing on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 1:09 pm

    Italy and Whites Western nations have a inverted population pyramid. We are starting to see the effect of having a large population of old people. This will overwhelm the health system and crash it to the ground.

    SUPERTARD
    you can use muzzie lovin high english to solve problems that were created by muzie lovin high english

    lern (sic) from (((supertard))) einstein:

    “Problems cannot be solved with the same mind set that created them.”

  4. doludup on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 4:04 pm 

    “The ecosystem is going to solve the overshoot problem for us, one way or another.” Can say no more.

  5. whoa on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 4:18 pm 

    i want to try muzzie ck but i don’t have money. instead of givine me money so i can ty muzzie ck they make fun of me

    they say i wait for welfare check. mean

    i don’t like mean ppl

  6. asg70 on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 5:29 pm 

    “we won’t stop viruses with such silly ideas as wearing face masks and living in Plexiglas cages.”

    No, we have vaccines, something people forget because we don’t have one yet and we’re so damn impatient about it.

  7. makati1 on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 6:04 pm 

    Not everyone wants a vaccine, asg70. My farm caretaker’s son was vaccinated when he was 3 years old and is now basically a vegetable at age 12. It destroyed his sight, impaired his hearing and stopped his mental progress at age 3. He will be a liability for his family as long as he lives.

    Vaccines kill thousands. Maim many thousands more. But you will not read that in the news. They are nothing but money grabs and the suckers vaccinated are the guinea pigs who die to prove whether they are safe or not. But then, Bill Gates, The Vaccine Pusher, wants to cull the population so he can have more.

    Nature will provide immunity, not some for profit lab.

  8. makati1 on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 6:10 pm 

    asg70: “… the Philippines’ mass dengue vaccination program—implemented with undue haste—not only killed children but provoked protests, criminal investigations, indictments, revocation of the vaccine’s license in that country and a plummeting of parental confidence in vaccine safety from 82% to 21%.”

    https://www.globalresearch.ca/dengvaxia-disaster-twenty-years-making-what-will-happen-rushed-covid-19-vaccine/5710949

    I’ll take my chances with the virus, thank you.

  9. JuanP on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 6:14 pm 

    Mak, looks like a storm is coming your way so be alert.

    https://www.tropicaltidbits.com/storminfo/94W_gefs_latest.png

  10. asg70 on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 6:15 pm 

    makati1 on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 6:10 pm

    asg70: “… the Philippines’ mass dengue vaccination program—implemented with u

    everyone pls respect supertard madcat. he may croak any day of the corona

    wish him well and love muzzzies harder

  11. croaking supertard mak on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 6:17 pm 

    JuanP on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 6:14 pm

    Mak, looks like a storm is coming your way so be alert.

    https://www.tropicaltidbits.com/storminfo/94W_gefs_latest.png

    thank you superatard’s supertard sock juanP
    yes, supertard madcat may croak due to the force of nature too

  12. whoa on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 6:18 pm 

    Mak, global research is a nutter site please refrain from using it on our forum

  13. SocialRevolutionComing on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 6:19 pm 

    so tru whoa so tru

  14. makati1 on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 6:43 pm 

    Ah! Davy’s sock puppet deniers are out in force today! Too bad you all live in the COVID-19 Police State with no freedoms left and a crashing food supply system. Awww! Too bad! NOT!

    Yes, we are moving into the typhoon season just as the US is moving into the hurricane season. So what? How are those flooded fields in the mid West doing? I read that there may be another bad year for US farmers, on top of their suicides, COVID-19 and droughts.

    As for dying, we all do. I have had 75 good years, but I expect many more. I want to watch this fiasco play pout to the end of the US as a 1st world country. Don’t you?

  15. official real whoa on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 6:52 pm 

    whoa on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 6:18 pm

    Mak, global research is a nutter site please refrain from using it on our forum

    above is not me obv

    its super green goat intel operation

  16. Ghung on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 9:28 pm 

    ……eats his cheap little frozen pizza thinking it’s pretty good even if it doesn’t really qualify as food. Must be the extra cheese.

    Thanks again, Ugo!

  17. Duncan Idaho on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 9:35 pm 

    “It’s a bit like the good old boy networks that stifle American state governments and allow Jesus freaks, Ayn Rand acolytes, child molesters and anti-vaxxers to run the place”

  18. Duncan Idaho on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 9:50 pm 

    JARED KUSHNER APPOINTED HEAD OF NEW
    STRATEGIC DISINFECTANT INITIATIVE

    https://vvattsupwiththat.blogspot.com/2020/04/white-house-launches-strategic-virus.html

  19. makati1 on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 9:54 pm 

    I’m an anti-vaxxer Duncan. There was a time they might have been safe. When the testing took years, not weeks. Now, it is a matter of $$$$ and fuck the serfs. If some die, the pharmaceutical corporations are immune to lawsuits, thanks to a lot of $$$$ passing to the Congressional whores. You can play Russian Roulette with a shot, but I will abstain, thank you.

  20. real whoa official on Mon, 27th Apr 2020 10:45 pm 

    supertar
    im also anti vax but i can’t expalin eradication of smallpox
    perhaps tard research will reveal other explanations than vax?

  21. FamousDrScanlon on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 2:34 am 

    So Mak, you’re saying that Bill Gates is greedy and wants to kill off his customer base.

    Bill Gates, one of the richest men in history because he captured more customers than the competition now wants to get richer by killing said customers with vaccines. Depopulate the world of his customer.
    Sounds like you really thought that one out.

    I’ve been listening to these retarded hysterical depopulation conspiracies for over 40 years and I can only think of 1 day in all those years where deaths exceeded births (by 10,000) & it was an act of nature, not BillGatesDeepStateAgenda21. The 2004 tsunami in Indonesia that killed 230,000 souls and it probably was over a 3-4 day period, but I’m feeling generous.

    I guess none of you depopulation conspiracy clowns can read a population growth graph (hockey stick) and have never stumbled across that worldOmeters web site with that crazy population clock.

    Don’t feel too bad Mak, contradictions are as regular as clockwork in a great many conspiracies. Sadly, uncritical thinkers lack the wherewithal to spot them. Not your fault. It’s mostly a matter of genetics, not education.

    Anyhoot, give a shout-out on the very first, break even, population day. Still adding approximately 220,000 souls, births minus deaths EVERY_FUCKING_DAY, so y’all have a ways to go before it’s up for any serious discussion with the adults.

  22. Davy on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 7:36 am 

    “Next In COVID-19 Tyranny: Ron Paul Warns Of Forced Vaccinations & “Digital Certificates””
    https://tinyurl.com/y8zk24er zero hedge

    “Right now, governments and private industries are working to rapidly develop and deploy a coronavirus vaccine. Microsoft founder Bill Gates, who is a major funder of these efforts, has suggested everyone who receives a vaccine be issued a “digital certificate” proving he has been vaccinated. Dr. Anthony Fauci, whose record of wrong predictions makes him the Bill Kristol of epidemiology, also wants individuals to carry some proof they have been vaccinated. Proponents of mandatory vaccines and enhanced surveillance are trying to blackmail the American people by arguing that the lockdown cannot end unless we create a healthcare surveillance state and make vaccination mandatory. The growing number of Americans who are tired of not being able to go to work, school, or church, or even to take their children to a park because of government mandates should reject this “deal.” Instead, they should demand an immediate end to the lockdowns and the restoration of individual responsibility for deciding how best to protect their health.”

  23. REAL Green on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 7:49 am 

    “they should demand an immediate end to the lockdowns and the restoration of individual responsibility for deciding how best to protect their health.”

    So true Davy-Juan. So true.

  24. REAL GREEN HYPOCRITE on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 8:00 am 

    Why am I a habitual liar and hypocrite? How do I get cured? Are lying and hypocrisy a terminal condition in my case?

    HELP!!!

  25. JuanP on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 8:01 am 

    “they should demand an immediate end to the lockdowns and the restoration of individual responsibility for deciding how best to protect their health.”

    who knows and who cares juanPee who cares and who knows juanPee. One thing is clear I am Mr. the virus ain’t shit but it brought the world to its knees so that tells you how stupid I am.

  26. JuanP on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 8:04 am 

    I am a habitual liar and hypocrite. I am psychopathic and have a multiple personality disorder in which lying comes naturally. I am untreated and choose to be that way because of the freedom. My anger and stalking come from jealousy and chronic depression that makes me furious when I am confronted. How do I get cured? Are lying and hypocrisy a terminal condition in my case? Yes they are!

    HELP!!!

  27. a few words of thanks on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 9:11 am 

    thank you for your support and love supertards
    please love the green goat if you can love supremacist muzzies

    you read all about muzzies getting millions to defend self in court and the 4 billion of jizya in germany per month

    you can get generic prescription drugs for penny on a dollar too if you’re a muzzies. but if you’re a non muzzie supertard, you can’t get it even if you pay a lot of shekles for it.

    thanks for loving muzzie

    ramadan mubarak! if a muzie allah akbar and go for your neck, he only being affectionate. this is actual advice so don’t blame me. i didnt’ say it

  28. asg70 on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 10:05 am 

    “Not everyone wants a vaccine”

    I SEE DEAD PEOPLE

  29. real whoa official on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 10:17 am 

    supertard, do you see the future with mandatory shots, a dozen, two dozens?

    thank you for lovin supremacist muzies, you can add lovin mandatory shots

    asg70 on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 10:05 am

    “Not everyone wants a vaccine”

    I SEE DEAD PEOPLE

  30. asg70 on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 10:40 am 

    i want vaccine damnit!
    I want 3 dozen shots and i want it deliverd by a low pay dotheads. the original dotheads are supremacist muzzies.

    yeah, it’s jsut a sign of devotion to his marriage, nothing else like al zawahiri

    very soft and cuddly muzzies

  31. claes on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 10:44 am 

    Ugo Bardi is still trying to sell us the “seneca curve”. His academic renomme is probably dependent on it, so “please buy it”.

    Civilisations starts and ends in so many ways that it’s hard to define their precise trajectory.
    Some starts fast and furiously, like Alexander the great”, or “Djenghis khan” or the Portugal/spanish south american venture.
    The “seneca curve” doesn’t account for those civilisations.
    Some civilisations end abruptly and others just fate away.
    The Mayans ended because of an abrupt climate shift.
    The roman empire fated away, although the eastern roman empire lasted another 1000 years.
    The “seneca curve” is just one possibility out of many when it comes to the rise and fall of empires.
    You can’t generalise the fate of empires from one “seneca” curve.

  32. real whoa official and mindless on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 10:47 am 

    superturds, do you see the future with me in an institution?

    I hear voices

  33. Duncan Idaho on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 10:54 am 

    “If you ain’t a gardener, you ain’t gangsta”

  34. claes on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 10:56 am 

    If you really want to know how empires rise and fall, you should look at this little pamflett.

    http://people.uncw.edu/kozloffm/glubb.pdf

    It’s only 28 pages, but still has the core of how empires rise and fall. Good readings

  35. Supertard and muzzie comment maker is a cocksucker on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 11:18 am 

    durka dirka mohammad was a paedophile asshole worse than jew filth like Harvey Weinstein!
    Like all good muslims they are paedophile enablers and the lowest form of life.

  36. claes on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 11:39 am 

    Muhammad started an empire around the Mediteranian, and it didn’t collapse.. it just slowly shrank… untill today when it’s rapidly expanding all over Europe.

  37. soft and cuddly muzzies on the prowl on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 11:52 am 

    ah, this sounds like very soft and cuddly muzzies

    claes on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 11:39 am

    Muhammad started an empire around the Mediteranian, and it didn’t collapse.. it just slowly shrank… untill today when it’s rapidly expanding all over Europe.

  38. soft and cuddly supremacist muzzie bombathon on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 11:53 am 

    https://www.thereligionofpeace.com/pow/Ramadan-Bombathon-2020.jpg?11911

  39. claes on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 12:04 pm 

    Exactly “soft and cuddly”, we couldn’t agree more.

  40. REAL Green on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 12:28 pm 

    “I am a habitual liar and hypocrite. I am psychopathic and have a multiple personality disorder in which lying comes naturally. I am untreated and choose to be that way because of the freedom. My anger and stalking come from jealousy and chronic depression that makes me furious when I am confronted. How do I get cured? Are lying and hypocrisy a terminal condition in my case? Yes they are!”

    So true Davy-Juan. So true!

  41. JuanP on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 12:30 pm 

    I hear voices and I am a habitual liar and hypocrite. I am psychopathic and have a multiple personality disorder in which lying comes naturally. I am untreated and choose to be that way because of the freedom. My anger and stalking come from jealousy and chronic depression that makes me furious when I am confronted. How do I get cured? Are lying and hypocrisy a terminal condition in my case? Yes they are!

  42. REAL Green on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 12:35 pm 

    So true Davy-Poodle. So true!

  43. claes on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 12:36 pm 

    My deep wish is that the great powers of the world would be so weakened by diseases, pollution and lack of raw materials, that they just couldn’t survive.
    Unfortunately that would leave the gates open for all the small local fascistic powers, and that is probably just as bad.
    So what do we want? Global fascism or local fascism. It’s either or.
    Democracy is just about half past dead

  44. real whoa official on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 12:58 pm 

    we have a muzzie lover

  45. claes on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 1:10 pm 

    Cull the herds, and cull them thoroughly. Let there be so few left that the otherwise thinking can find a place to be with out having the envy or the prejudice of the main stock.
    Keep the sheeples in their pens and let the eagles fly

  46. SocialRevolutionComing on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 3:03 pm 

    I cannot post MarketWatch link because my comment does not appear on PeakOil.com,
    probably has a scam filter.

    If they keep the food supply chain on, electrical grid on and energy supply chain on on, they can continue that COVID hoax indefinitely or until they are ready for their one world government is ready.

    From MarketWatch.

    Trump to sign order to keep meat-processing plants open
    Published: April 28, 2020 at 3:47 p.m. ET
    By Robert Schroeder
    94
    President Trump reportedly plans to use Defense Production Act to order meat companies to stay open
    President Donald Trump speaks as he meets with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis in the Oval Office of the White House on Tuesday. Getty Images

    Email icon
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    TSN
    +5.37%

    President Donald Trump on Tuesday said he would sign an executive order on food supply, as the U.S. was working with Tyson Foods during the coronavirus pandemic.

    The order, reports the Associated Press, is meant to stave off a shortage of chicken, pork and other meat on U.S. supermarket shelves because of the coronavirus. The order will use the Defense Production Act to classify meat processing as critical infrastructure to keep production plants open, the news organization reported.

    Speaking in the Oval Office with Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, Trump said the order would address what he called “liability problems” in the food supply chain.

    Meat-processing plants have weighed the risks of prosecution if they are blamed for spreading infection during the pandemic, as Indiana University’s Todd Haugh recently wrote. Tyson TSN, +5.37%, for example, suspended production at an Iowa pork processing plant due to an outbreak among employees of COVID-19, the infection derived from the novel strain of coronavirus.

    “We’re working with Tyson, which is one of the big companies in that world,” Trump said.

    Now read:Meat shortage looms as coronavirus shuts packing plants, leaving farmers with tough choices.

    SMALL-BUSINESS SPEECH

    Trump gave a speech Tuesday on the Paycheck Protection Program, the small-business loan program that came under scrutiny after some large companies were allowed to receive aid. He called demand “extraordinarily high,” after the program resumed lending Monday morning.

    Last week, the Treasury Department said PPP wasn’t intended to help public companies “with substantial market value and access to capital markets” and gave such companies until May 7 to return funds.

    Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said on Tuesday that the administration will audit small-business loans above $2 million, as he warned of criminal liability for companies who improperly received government cash.

    The emergency-loan program for small businesses — which is designed to prevent layoffs during the coronavirus pandemic — had been closed since April 16, when it ran out of its initial $350 billion.

    The PPP allows companies to have their loans forgiven if they spend money on payroll and benefits.

    Now read:Emergency loans for small businesses ‘flowed to areas less hard hit’ by coronavirus, study finds.

    Sign up for Trump Today and more MarketWatch newsletters.

  47. Russell Seitz on Tue, 28th Apr 2020 6:58 pm 

    To what degree was the present oil debacle prefigured by the abrupt swerve of the Energy Crisis into the Oil Glut?

    Just as $100 crude made deep formation play investments plausible, 10 buck Brent bids fair to yank the magic carpet out from under the subsidized rise of solar energy.

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