Wednesday, September 4, 2013
Carrying Capasity - Stress, Hope and Pride
Let's continue on with the musing from yesterday. As we are all aware of no one lives in a vacuum so the rather bleak look at two people surviving on their own which at first seems impossible actually begins to brighten as we add in other factors.
One must never under estimate the power of stress and how it brings out the imagination, motivation and resilience of humanity. As many very knowledgeable readers know there are literally thousands of untapped or uncommon resources out there we could and will use in a pinch. From picking Dandelions and other wild greens to the beloved family pet, hunger will change your feelings and offer up sources you cannot even imagine while sitting all comfy at your computer screen.
A factor I don't think many people really consider these days however is that everyone of us will have a marketable skill even if we place little to no value on that skill right now. Basic labor and the intelligence to follow directions and work as a team will become the major selling points in a total grid down situation.
Many writers today like to paint a picture of anarchy or a zombie apocalypse. A world filled with roving bands of looters and cut throats preying on the weak. The initial panic may in fact bring that on, especially in urban areas but I do not give credit to that attitude as being the default setting of humanity. If it was then we would have never built civilization to begin with. Certainly it is there and something that will have to be dealt with but the costs and longevity of that type of life is it's own balancing act in the end.
As should be obvious from yesterday's post nature herself almost assures that cooperation and team work will be the traits that flourish. Not some type of collectivism or primitive socialism but a community of individuals who learn to work together. Even someone who may think they have nothing to offer maybe surprised. A lookout who doesn't complain and can peel potatoes would be just as valuable in a survival situation as a mighty hunter in my opinion. If not more so. You might be thinking to yourself that anyone can do those things and you are right but keep in mind we are now looking at a world of slim margins and no machines. Three people now become necessary in one area to support an extra person in another area.
Remember that phrase. Slim Margins. Because it opens up a whole new (old) way of doing things and places a certain amount of value on every member of a community many of which are marginalized today due to automation and cheap energy.
Everyone will have value and those who can be trusted and have a sense of common good and community will be worth their weight in beans.
Now your next question maybe where in fact would these traits find a market. Well the answer is more than likely much closer than you think. As the cities have grown the rural areas have shrunk in population however one needs look no further than the current situation in Greece to see what makes this trend reverse. And reverse it shall.
If you think figuring out how to provide for even two people is a daunting task in a collapse situation imagine the farmer who is now looking at millions of dollars of useless equipment and thousands of acres to plant without even a horse to do it with.
Trust me here 9 out of 10 farm workers these days have as little knowledge or skill of what it takes to survive in a grid down situation as your average stock broker. Well that maybe a bit harsh as they more than likely have a clue but they are on the same experience level I imagine. If there is any industry on the planet that will suffer monumental changes it would be farming in a world without cheap energy coupled with our phrase "Slim Margins".
Within the first year there will be plenty of openings for those with a can do attitude and a willingness to work. Even on my relatively modest immediate acreage I could easily add another family of three in a grid down situation and that's without even looking at the other 300 or so acres further out that would be under my control as well.
So here is our next reality check. I have seen this one in action so many times and it will be the number one deciding factor of whether a person survives a collapse or dies a horrible death of hunger. Pride. There will be many who will refuse to even contemplate a life of labor or work tied to the land. Those petty dictators we see as supervisors in warehouses and offices across the urban landscape today. The many office workers taking up air conditioned space in government agencies who wrinkle their noses at anything rural. Some of these people will never submit to work they believe is beneath them. They will ridicule the very thought of planting a cucumber and laugh at anyone harvesting their own wheat.
Survival maybe hard but those with too much pride and no ability to see reality it will be impossible.
Keep Prepping Everyone!!!!