Big Thinkers: Orlov's Book and Current Events - Part 1

352
Thu, Sep 5, 2013 - 12:47am
The Sky is Falling! Or is it?
Dmitry Orlov’s 2013 book “The Five Stages of Collapse – Survivors’ Toolkit” is required reading. I do not say that lightly. It is a must read; do not delay. It is here:
and there are reviews posted for those inclined. I am not doing a book review. I am trying to pin down a realistic time-line, and the markers of same, in order that we all can prepare accordingly. Nothing I have read to date is as well analyzed, or presented, so for that, I am in awe. But, naturally, I have my own thoughts as to the reality that all five stages of collapse actually occur. So, this is Part I. Part II will be next Wednesday, as it all should make more sense as the Syrian situation unfolds.
From the introduction of the book through the afterward, the book is mesmerizing both in its insightful analysis, and its use of examples. It is full of humor, too. While I quarrel with the constant references to global warming–I am not a believer in that theory at all–the book is simply astonishing for its clear, yet compelling, observations. Oh, did I mention that Mr. Orlov was born in Russia, having moved to the United States as a teenager? Or that Mr. Orlov is an engineer with skills in many fields including high energy physics research, e-commerce and Internet security? Or that Mr. Orlov traveled back and forth to Russia repeatedly to observe the Soviet collapse during the late 80s and mid 90s?
All of these facts cement his credentials for me, and makes this book such a compelling read. I find it extremely important that we examine Mr. Orlov’s prism through which he views the world, because he alone seems to have the unique insight to have synthesized a world view based on personal experience as well as his education and obvious intellect. One can quarrel with his conclusions, but they are based on solid facts and experiences completely foreign to me that is for sure. Hence, I absorbed the book in rapt fascination, and I now look at the world events with a nod to the possibilities that Orlov’s predictions are accurate.
Mr. Orlov was born in Russia during the Cold War era. It is fascinating to think that he then left Russia and moved to the United States, where he then got to play video games, listen to Western pop-culture music and watch Hollywood movies. Certainly he had a taste of hard living in Russia, compared to the easy life in the United States. This had to have played a huge influence upon young Orlov.
Then, as the communist experiment began its death spasms, Mr. Orlov’s family and friends and he himself were there to witness them all to include the collapse. Personally, I remember being in an airport in Alabama at the time watching CNN showing images of the Soviet Union collapse on the video monitor. It was unbelievable, shocking–I was a former soldier, inculcated to hate the evil empire, they were the enemy dammit!; yet, my plane still showed up and left on time and I got to my destination. No one seemed to mind, or notice, and life just went on.
So, it’s not like the collapse of the fiat system in general and perhaps the USA in particular will be any life altering universe changing occurrence, although it will probably feel like that to many who are directly, initially affected. No, what Mr. Orlov writes about is a steady progression of a decaying, deteriorating, behemoth of a system, which announces its deterioration in measurable, meaningful ways. It is no mystery, nor should it be.
Anything which by definition that is unsustainable will come to an end. There is no sane person presently arguing that the current fiat system is sustainable. So, the fiat system will end, and the question then becomes what will it look like when it does start to end? Can the eventual collapse be stopped mid stream, like a magic stick save? How will we know the collapse is upon us? If the collapse is gradual, then how long will it take? What should we expect, at any given point in time, then, along the collapse continuum?
Mr. Orlov provides all the tools to reach conclusions and answers for all of these questions in detail and with examples from history. He adroitly describes an orderly process marked by five discrete stages of collapse, not all of which necessarily must occur, but which stages will occur in progressive fashion should efforts not be made to stave off the final, ruinous, back to the Stone Age collapse.
Those five stages are, in order, (1) Financial Collapse; (2) Commercial Collapse; (3) Political Collapse; (4) Social Collapse, and finally, (5) Cultural Collapse.
Without taking too much time to restate history, we all pretty much know that the financial collapse is occurring as we speak, with the first hint and outward manifestation of financial collapse occurring in 2008 and continuing ever since. Here is what Orlov says about Stage 1, the Financial Collapse: “Faith in business as usual is lost. The future is no longer assumed to resemble the past in any way that allows risk to be assessed and financial assets to be guaranteed. Financial institutions become insolvent; savings are wiped out and access to capital is lost.” [p.14].
At this point, I firmly believe that the financial collapse is ongoing just as described, and accelerating. Understand that the process of the ongoing deterioration of the system is a gradual marginal process, and that there is no definitive point in time when there is at one moment a blissful, peaceful feeling that everything is perfectly fine, and then at the next moment there is sudden chaos and anarchy with rioting in the streets and images of roving bands of thugs streaming across our televisions. Instead, the financial collapse will continue its progress marginally, inexorably, step-by-step until such time as there is a commercial collapse. This is a completely different viewpoint I had when I first came to tfmr. I initially felt that collapse was IMMINENT!! Grab the weapons, food, water and gold/silver, time to bug out!
Well, I was dead wrong. Stupidly so. But how could I have been so misguided? Was it gullibility? Madison Avenue marketing? Human nature normalcy bias?
Whatever. Only now, I see things in a different, more analytical light, thanks to Mr. Orlov’s writings. Make no mistake, though. It is crystal clear that the Financial Collapse is ongoing, right now, leading soon enough I believe, though gradually to Stage 2, Commercial Collapse.
Understand that Santa told everyone to get out of the financial system. Cyprus banks initiated the bail-in. The ground work has been laid out. It is all legal and all the details worked out. Plenty has been written about the pending stealing of funds on deposit at banks, retirement accounts, name it. Look at what is happening in Argentina. If those Argentinian bond holders are stiffed, then that supposedly valuable New York paper is not so valuable now, is it? All of this is coming to pass as predicted, and the signs are obvious to anyone who wants to look.
The fiat system is broken. Risk assessment is now based on predicting the words of the Fed bankster in charge, then front run on huge computers to shear the sheep of fractions of pennies. The worlds’ unregulated derivatives dwarf the world GDP. A small hiccup will destroy the entire scheme, overnight. We are there.
This leads us to Stage 2, the Commercial Collapse. Orlov says this: “Faith that the market shall provide is lost. Money is devalued and or becomes scarce, commodities are hoarded, import and retail chains break down in widespread shortages of survival necessities become the norm.” [p.14].
It sure does not look like this Stage yet to me, but it sure seems damn close, too. But, by looking closely, the Syrian situation is telegraphing the proximity of when this Stage will occur. Many, many commentators have weighed in about Syria, and how the whole military situation, the bombing, the invasion, the troops really point in one direction;
The US President, a laughing stock, says at one moment that Syria crossed a red line, but now tries to wiggle out from under his own words, like a hack criminal defense attorney arguing for leniency for his recidivist client. The Syrian distraction is just that, a ruse. The real reason, they say, is resources, namely, gas pipelines to feed the industrialized world in general, and to perpetuate the governing structures of some middle east countries. So does this not seem to point towards the imminent arrival of Stage 2? Soon enough we will know.
Believe what you want to believe, but the next Stage, Commercial Collapse, knowing it is upon us, preparing do deal with it and live through it, is damn important to survival of us regular folks that is for sure. It is also after this Stage that I believe that a concerted effort to become politically active and strive for limited government will have the biggest effects.
So, for now, I leave you with this Part I and invite comments, criticisms, and the like. Try to focus on Orlov’s definitions of the first two Stages.
Next week I will dig into Stages 3-5, and evaluate details as well as strategies for rising up and making a difference for Stage 3. I would not be doing all this analysis if I did not believe that there is a possibility for real reform during Stage 3. So, I am not totally a doomsday believer I once was, but things sure look grim, so don’t let up on the preparation effort that is for sure.

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TJeffson
Sep 6, 2013 - 2:18pm

@argent re debt

The debt is money. It doesn't matter if it has passed thru the economy or not. For every dollar bill out there (including those that are electronic digits) there is a "dollar" worth of US debt. The money is the debt. Whenever debt is created, money must be printed (paper or electronic) to "buy" that debt. If the debt is written off, then the money supply must shrink. At least that's how I've learned about US Debt and the US Dollar and fractional reserve banking.

If I'm completely off base, then someone correct me, by all means.

Sep 6, 2013 - 2:16pm

I still don't understand why the bankers would want to

crash the US economy. Why is that their goal?

Which is it?

The United States government is doing what it can to provoke a war in the Middle East, and the Russian president has promised to retaliate.

In the end, I do not believe that this has anything to do with Syria whatsoever, it is about creating a hot war with Russia, and it is a war that our government intends to lose.

As I updated my current running thesis a couple of days ago, ( the United States government is carefully considering every action, and designing it to have the worst possible outcome for the United States),

this war will be no different.

Analyzing the markets by running the numbers is a completely pointless pursuit.

When you look at the bigger picture, and the current psychology of the psychopaths in charge, it starts to paint a clearer picture, losing a hot war to Russia will probably crash the US economy, and that is not an unintended consequence.

Or:

The talk of war is a direct result of the power they [the Fed] hold over the government, there isn't even any rational thought on display at the highest levels anymore, we will only get what the bankers want.

The bankers want war, and they will get it.

At this point, the debt is irrelevant, everyone knows it won't be paid back, but the price of that debt has already been paid in a surrender of national sovereignty of every Western nation.

How will the Fed benefit from crashing the US economy and aiding in the surrender of national sovereignty of every Western nation?

Nana
Sep 6, 2013 - 2:11pm

Wow

Awesome, awesome thread!

The truth is going main stream more and more, day by day.

BTW- last night we were watching the military channel which included HAARP, the space fence, Teasla, Chemtrails, X-37 and more.

Vindication is priceless......

argent rampant
Sep 6, 2013 - 2:08pm

XTY - RE: "Old Shyppes"

This is the type of old ship I am more familiar with. The last of the "Tin Cans". Served in two of these, one based in Japan, the other in Portland, OR, which is about seven hours from the Pacific ocean via the Columbia River.

No poop deck, but a low, rockin' fantail where it could be hard to keep your feet, especially at 35 knots!

Bollocks
Sep 6, 2013 - 2:01pm

What is the MATTER with some people???

The woman obsessed with gnomes

They are loved and loathed in almost equal numbers, but for one woman there's something very special about the humble garden gnome.

Ann Atkin holds the world record for the largest collection of gnomes and pixies, with over 2,000. They are now housed in a gnome reserve, which is open to the public.

But to make sure the gnomes don't get scared by the invading humans, Ann provides visitors with optional gnome hats.
--------------
Forget about Syria. This is serious shit.
Just 30 secs of the video here is enough: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-23971978

tyberious
Sep 6, 2013 - 2:01pm

As John Stuart Mill

As John Stuart Mill wrote:

The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not sufficient warrant.

Patrancus
Sep 6, 2013 - 1:55pm

I"m afraid

the US may be due for another one of these, which I believe could very well be part of the Obummer playbook

https://myfivebest.com/the-greatest-military-defeats-in-u-s-history/

and if it would become a reality, it might then very clearly be the end of the petro dollar.

tyberious
Sep 6, 2013 - 1:55pm

Dirty Dealing on Syria in Washington

armstrongeconomics.com / by Martin Armstrong /

September 6, 2013

The only key Arab nations supporting Obama are Saudi Arabia and Qatar and that is all about the pipeline blocked by Syria. There are even rumors that the Cyprus event was used to cripple Russians and cut-off their eventual access to a huge gas field there yet to be brought into production. If the Russians gained control of that, then they would really have a stranglehold on Europe.

Credible sources keep pointing to a massive cover-up surrounding Syria – Benghazi Connection. The United States has literally trashed the region with its crazy foreign policy run by people who are truly clueless about the region and the religious conflicts. They messed up Iraq, Egypt, Afghanistan and now Libya is in chaos yet the press will not report that in the USA. The British Independent wrote:

Special report: We all thought Libya had moved on – it has, but into lawlessness and ruin

The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff of the United States, General Martin Dempsey, backed by his Joint Staff generals and admirals, has stood his ground between a rushed and politically incoherent President Obama who has been intent on launching a military attack on Syria while Congress was on vacation. Some have claimed Dempsey lied to Congress over the Benghazi affair stating the troops were sent to Tripoli when they were needed in Benghazi. However, Dempsey may have been out of the loop altogether accounting now for his stand against Obama and Syria – not again.

READ MORE

murphy
Sep 6, 2013 - 1:53pm

Re Syria

As an aside. I don't make a habit of writing my congress people but I did so. I made myself crystal clear how against military engagement I was. I even enclosed some ZH articles as well as Stockmans latest.

From the Ohio Dem senator I got a letter that said absolutely nothing regarding his stance. From the Repub senator I got one that said Obama's stance was wrong. We do need to intercede (militarily) and to make sure our money is going to the right factions. (hmmm)

The big surprise was from the repub congressman. I actually got a phone message that I didn't return. Then I got another call today from the DC office. Went out of his way to say that the congressman will be voting against any military action. I actually think that the peoples voices may be heard on this issue. Might be worthwhile for those of you who are so inclined to write congress.

For those who are interested, great article.

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2013-09-04/david-stockman-end-american-imperium

argent rampant
Sep 6, 2013 - 1:43pm

Responses

@Bollocks - You're hysterical (I mean that in a good, Yank way)!

@Daystar & Fix - Good points. May be the correct answer.

@TJeffson - The money created by that debt has already passed into the economy. I don't see that writing off the debt would reverse that.

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