I am starting this thread in hopes of stimulating a conversation about when the 'Great Keynsian Experiment' will end, and more specifically, how your personal view of this question structures how you prepare. Because let's face it: if you think we will see a currency collapse sometime next decade, your approach for being ready for that event would be VERY different than if you think it will collapse next week. In short, your view of how dire things are structures your 'decision tree' and dictates your strategy.
Let me explain why I am putting this out there- I have seen any posters at this site and others, whom I have great respect for based on their other writings, often say cryptic things like "better get your stuff together cause we don't have long", or even make direct predictions like "we have four or five weeks, tops". And I totally understand the mindset behind doing this- most of us are procrastinators and the more dire we think a situation is, the more likely we are to get off our lazy butts and start preparing. Nothing wrong with that, but I think people do themselves a great disservice by adopting a "world is ending next week" mentality. Here's why- many of the best preps are long-term projects that take some time to develop. An imminent doomsday mindset may keep you from taking on things that, ultimately, you would be very glad to have.
Check out the picture below. I took this yesterday and if you look very carefully you will see four different projects of mine that I would never have even started if I really thought the end was near when I began them.
The chickens are the newest- got my pretty ladies as little fuzzballs in February, when the buzz at ZH and other places was 'Greece is the first domino and watch them all knock each other over in a sovereign debt default extravanganza'. I built the coop over the winter, while gold and silver were exploding and some claimed the dollar was dying right before our eyes. If you look carefully to the left of the coop you will see my first big 'food production' garden, put in in the spring of 2009 when the trillions in porkulus spending and QE were exploding the deficit to no obvious end, and real unemployment was pushing 20%. Finally, to the left and right of the coop you will see plumb, apple, and peach trees. I was planting these in 2008 during the dark days of the financial crisis, when Wall Street firms were dropping like flies and it looked like economic apocalypse was upon us. Fruit trees that take 3-5 years minimum to start producing was a real leap of faith at that time, but I cannot tell you how glad I am that I took the 'long view' back then.
And I guess that's my point- if you get totally caught up in a "The End Is Near" mindset, you will likely not take on projects which will take months or years to develop. If the end really IS near, then short-term is the way to go. But if the great unwinding takes awhile, realize that you are costing yourself opportunities for developing long-term assets.
So how long do we have?
Best of luck, all! - Pining