Poor Man Survival
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A Digest of Urban
Escalation: Recent events suggest mounting economic danger
A common refrain from people who are critical of alternative
economists is that we have been predicting crisis for so long that
"eventually we will be right." These are generally people who don't
understand the nature of economic decline. It's like an avalanche that builds
over time, then breaks and quickly escalates as it flows down the mountain.
What they don't grasp is that they are in the middle of an economic
collapse right now,
and they just can't see it because they have been acclimated to the presence of
Economic decline is a process that takes many years, and while you
might get an event like the market crash of 1929 or the crash of 2008, these
moments of panic are nothing more than the wreckage left behind by the great
wave of tumbling ice that everyone should have seen coming far in advance, but
In 2022 the job of warning people is far easier than it used to be
because we are well past the midpoint of the process of decline. But believe it
or not, I still get people today who claim that alternative economists are
"doom-mongers." The power of willful ignorance is truly amazing. It's
enough to make a person blind to stagflationary crisis, supply chain
disruptions, quickly inflating prices, stock market carnage, bond market instability,
record consumer debt, and international conflict.
At this point, I think if a person can't see the dangers ahead,
they are probably a waste of time and space and are destined to be buried in
the ice; there's nothing that can be done for them. For now, I'll be focusing
on the people that are awake and aware and try to give them a sense of what
point in the collapse process at which we find ourselves.
In the past month there has been a considerable uptick in economic
and geopolitical activity that suggests we are entering a new phase, and not
surprisingly it's all accumulating right before we hit October. Here are the
events that I find most concerning:
The European Energy Crisis
This is an event that I have been predicting since the Russian
invasion of Ukraine and now it is upon us. I wrote about it extensively in a
recent article, so I won't rehash all that information here. What I do want to
point out is the complete lack of planning on the part of European officials to
deal with the threat.
Russia has now completely cut off natural gas supplies to Europe,
which represent around 40 percent of all EU energy resources. Europe's
benchmark natural gas prices spiked by 28 percent a week ago, on top of already
existing inflation. Oil supplies are also in steep decline for Europe and the
EU government has pledged to cut what's left of Russian oil imports by the sea
at the end of the year. But they have offered very little in the way of
solutions to the energy supply problem.
There has been talk of increasing imports of alternative resources
from other nations, but the EU is already buying up around 75 percent of all
liquid natural gas from the U.S. and OPEC oil producers have indicated they
will not be attempting to increase production anytime soon (probably because
they can't due to inflation in operation costs). There is no backup energy
resource for Europe. It doesn't exist right now. They will try to buy up
whatever coal, oil and gas they can find on the market driving up prices even
more for other countries but still come up short, which means people are going
to freeze this winter.
The best case scenario is that it is a mild winter and people
barely scrape by with minimum heating. But industry is going to suffer, and
many manufacturers are going to cut production (which means more stress on the
global supply chain).
Core Inflation Is Still Rising
As I warned last week, inflation is continuing to rise despite the
Fed's continued interest rate hikes, giving the central bank even more
ammunition to justify higher rates into extreme economic weakness.
The latest CPI print showed an increase to 8.3 percent and was a
shock to markets that universally expected a drop. This is the nature of
stagflation, even with falling demand prices continue to climb or remain high
for extended periods. The stagflation even of the 1970s lasted for a decade
until the Fed jacked rates to 20 percent and then everything crumbled in the
This doesn't mean that rates will get to 20 percent this time;
they don't need to. All it would take is a Federal Funds Rate of around 4-5
percent to crash our current QE-addicted system. A 75 bps rate hike is now
widely expected at the next Fed meeting this month, with some predicting a 100
bps hike. This would put us close to crash territory for markets and for
employment, though I think we still have well into 2023 before unemployment
really starts to spike.
Putin's Meeting With Xi
As I write this, Vladimir Putin is set to meet with China's Xi
Jinping and the nature of the conference is not clear. There are obvious points
of agreement such as China's continued purchases of Russian oil and other
commodities, as well as the ongoing plan to build a pipeline to China by 2025.
There is also strategic cooperation which is evident in the recent naval
exercises between the two nations around Japan and Taiwan.
The timing of the meeting is concerning to me because the prime
season for a potential Chinese invasion of Taiwan is fast approaching (October
is the best month for naval movements to avoid typhoons). China would not
necessarily need to commit to a ground invasion, either. They could simply cut
off all import/export trade from any source other than China and starve Taiwan
until they accept unification.
There is also the issue of Ukraine and arms sales. With the amount
of propaganda coming from Ukrainian Intelligence and NATO, it's hard to say
what is actually happening, but I suspect Russia is changing strategies and
repositioning to missile and artillery bombardment of infrastructure, including
power grids and water. This is a tactic that Russia has avoided for months
(until this week), which is surprising because one of the first measures taken
by the U.S. during an invasion is to eliminate most key infrastructure (as we
did in Iraq). You would think Russia would have done the same, but perhaps they
were saving that scenario for winter when it is harder for Ukraine to cope.
This would make Ukraine essentially unlivable in the coming winter
for most of the population. Putin may be seeking to ensure China remains a
steady economic partner should geopolitical pressures increase. They may even
be making a deal of mutual support: China takes Taiwan while Russia makes
Ukraine a resource wasteland and they each support the other economically when
NATO counties try to impose sanctions on China. We probably won't know until
October, but the timing of the meeting should raise eyebrows.
If the manure is about to hit the fan in Taiwan along with
Ukraine, then diplomatic and economic ties will be severed and western access
to China's manufacturing will be cut. This is a problem for China's economy,
certainly, which may be why they have continued their mass COVID lockdowns well
after every other government has abandoned them. Could this be practice for
civil controls in an impending war environment?
China's global dominance in imports/exports gives them
considerable economic leverage in trade, however. Also, their vast holding of
U.S. dollars and Treasurys could be used as a weapon to damage or destroy the
dollar's world reserve status. If China invades Taiwan this year, then all bets
are off. The economic decline will move swiftly from that point on.
There are many other trends that factor into the crash
environment, but the above factors are the most recent and hold the biggest
potential for causing a domino effect globally. The question that always arises
is "what can we do about it?" Not much in terms of prevention. What
we can do, though, is prepare locally to weather the storm. This means stocking
necessities before they rise even further in price or become non-existent,
becoming a producer and learning a valuable skill for survival in a depleted
economy, and organizing with people locally who are on the same page to create
security and alternative trade opportunities.
Hopefully, the people who are aware will rise to the challenge and
organization will be extensive because the worst-case scenario would be great
masses of completely isolated people all vying against each other rather than
working toward mutual security. Even in a slow collapse scenario, this is a
problem in terms of rising crime; so, plan on working with others if you want
to avoid inevitable third-world conditions.
To truth and knowledge,
Editors' Note: The term "good as gold" exists for a reason. But none of the elected class will tell the truth: that the United States government caused the decline of its own currency... which is why I do recommend you read this report I put together so that your retirement savings won't get caught up in the precipitous decline. I believe it can help you prepare for the worst financial threats and deceptions America now faces.
When inflation is this high, a
recession always happens...
It happened in the early 1980s.
And it happened every other time inflation rose above 5%.
The reason is the Federal
Reserve. It needs to raise interest rates in response. That's the central
bank's primary tool to fight inflation when it gets too high.
Specifically, in times like
this, the Fed raises the "federal-funds rate." That's the overnight
lending rate between banks. And importantly, it influences all other interest
The thing is, it's not pretty
when the Fed goes to work. When inflation is in the 8% range like today, the
Fed needs to hike rates higher. And that's painful for stocks...
22 Basic Skills You'll Have To Learn After The Collapse
In the event of a major collapse, there are a number of skills
that most people will need to relearn in order to survive. If you would like to
get a head start on mastering the skills you will need to know following a
major disaster, check out these basic skills that most people will be forced to
learn after the collapse.
1. Animal Husbandry - Growing a garden is a
great way to put food on the table, but if you want more than a vegan diet,
then animal husbandry is a skill that you will need to know...
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