Letter Re: Did Western Civilization Actually Peak Around 1970?

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Jim,
I wanted to comment on something that was mentioned near the end of the Utah home break-in article: The author hit on the idea that TEOTWAWKI already took place in the late 1960s. Possibly some gifted insight.

I'm a member of a regional Peak Oil group. (I originally joined this group a few years ago, in order to learn food-growing skills: You've always suggested getting with various groups, in order to learn skills), we've begun a spin off group meeting--a 'meeting of the minds' so to speak, involving predictive analysis, regarding the collapse of the current civilization.

We were all encouraged to present our own theses, with the material to support it. In my case, I presented the idea that our civilization actually peaked sometime in the early 1970s, for the following reasons ( based on the "fusion" [an MI term] of the open-source analysis of several theories, in addition to my own historical observations):

- The last manned Apollo mission to the moon took place in 1972 (we have not seriously entertained the thought of going back there since).

- Domestic US oil production peaked at roughly 9.5 mbl/d (million barrels per day) in December, 1970, and has since gone into irreversible decline (without going into detail, we now produce roughly what we once did during WWII. In other words, US energy independence is a fantasy). This includes the North Slope of Alaska, which previously peaked in the late 1980s at roughly 2 mbl/d, and now produces roughly just over 700,000 bl/d.

- Nixon's decision to remove the last aspect of the US Dollar being tied to anything tangible, in 1972 (DeGaulle wanted France's loans repaid in gold bullion. This was in part a result of the Vietnam War).

- The Arab Oil Embargo of 1973, which permanently devalued the US Dollar.

- The US withdrawal from South Vietnam, with Saigon being overrun by 1975, marking the US military's first "defeat" (For the real reasons as to why the US got involved militarily in Vietnam, I suggest Googling 'Geneva Conference': By international agreement in 1956, Vietnam was supposed to be split in half for only two years, while the country took a popular vote.)

- A lower living wage for the average US worker, since the 1970s.

There are other examples. In my opinion the best author specializing in this area of predictive analysis is John Michael Greer in Oregon, who is critical of Jared Diamond's research. (Diamond avoids the Roman Empire, and skims over the Mayan civilization). Greer has concluded that a civilization takes roughly 150 years to collapse--something akin to Winnie the Pooh being dragged down the stairs, hitting his rear end on each step, staying there a brief moment, then hitting the next one

OBTW, I'm reading "Patriots: Surviving the Coming Collapse" for a second time, this time flagging it with Post-It notes. - CPT J.E. .(A prior service 96B)

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This page contains a single entry by Jim Rawles published on November 7, 2008 8:58 PM.

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