The above graph is adapted from Limits to Growth, Revisited. It is not a hard and fast prediction, but rather the product of a model with 40 years of high correspondence with developments. We are, at present, at the top of the growth curves, many of which have already begun to plateau. Slopes of decline do not factor in such worst-case scenarios as widespread urban- or domestic nuclear facilities collapse consequent to economic collapse.

I've added the shading and 'crossover' circle' (coincident with 'peak everything') to indicate my best guess as to the high probablility zone for global, economic collapse, triggering the onset of TEOTWAWKI.

I fear a hard landing... no 'reboot' or 'transition' to a lower functioning economy. I urge high priority preparation now.

I've got a short glossary of terms at the bottom of this page... if you come across an unfamiliar term, please scroll down and check it out.

Information I'm including or pointing to doesn't mean I necessarily agree with it. Rather, I've found it to be stimulating and worthy of consideration. I'm sure you'll exercise your own judgement... we're nothing if not independent! 8)

Saturday, January 28, 2017

The Farmer is the One Who Feeds Them All

If you'll only look and see, then I think you will agree
That the farmer is the man who feeds them all.
-- American Folk Song

The Farmer is the One Who Feeds Them All

In prehistoric times, there were few known urban centers of 2,000 persons or more.

Recently, we passed a milestone marking the half-urban world. More than half of us now live in urban centers ranging from 2K persons to mega-cities in the tens of millions.

At the height of the Roman Empire, there were fewer people alive than now live in the U.S., alone. For every person alive then, there are around 25 persons alive, now.

At the founding of the U.S., around 90% of the population were farmers.

Today in the U.S., between 1 and 2% are farmers. Of these, virtually none are subsistent, organic farmers, meaning they are reliant on fossil fuels, fertilizers, purchase of seed stock and markets.

Globally, traditional farming skills, means, lands and infrastructure has been degraded or wholly lost.

Climate change - whether or not it is anthropogenic - is making serious inroads into agricultural outputs. Top-soil loss, salinization, fresh water depletion, introduced and resistant pests are increasing their toll. All threaten worse.

For the first time in human history, agriculture broke the hunter/gatherer mode of life, and we grew dependent on the farmer.

A series of green revolutions has vastly increased the farmer's efficiency, but also their dependency on non-farm goods and services.

For the first time in agricultural history, we depend in unprecedented numbers on the production of one or two among a hundred of us, and therefore the uninterrupted flow of those same goods and services.

What's more, the chain of transmission of hard won organic agriculture technologies has been broken and all but lost. Modern farmers across the first world have lost the ways and means to grow non-hybrid food in quantity. Seed stock is not available in quantity; fossil fuels empower every aspect of modern farming.

In the third world, farmers retain more traditional, low tech skills, but rely on ever more inputs from the global economy to manage their crops.

Should the inter-dependent hubs fail - energy, transport, finance, IT/communications, water/sewage... failure of one takes down all - so does the supply of critical, agricultural tools and materials and the markets for whom their assets and production is geared.

Should any of the conditions fail that allow the few to feed the many...

What happens in the mega-cities? The cities? The towns? Who will feed them? What will they eat? What will they do?

What might 3.75 thousand million desperate people do?

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- Dave Z