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Ruminations on a dying economy

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posted on Jul, 7 2009 @ 11:01 PM
I always Enjoy James Kunstler's weekly blog entries. He's a bit on the extreme side, and known for making overy-dire predicitions that haven't panned out, but the world is slowly, sadly starting to sing his tune, at least to some extent.

He often writes on how the US position in the world after WWII gave us the enormous benefits we are still living off of...but in his view we are resting on our laurels, "running on fumes" and about to go empty. A poignent exerpt from this week's screed, based on his observations during a weekend getaway:

"Watching the summer panorama on an Adirondack lake is like reading a history of the post World War Two decades, because almost nothing on view there now existed before 1945 and we'll be stunned to see how swiftly it all terminates. The fantastic prosperity of these postwar decades killed the wildness of these once-remote lakes. Fortunes were made -- like everywhere else in the USA -- carving up the landscape and deploying graceless houses made of cheap, fabricated materials. All the diabolical genius brought to engineering the New Jersey and Long Island suburbs was eventually turned loose on the Adirondack wilderness, with predictable results. The lakes themselves, stuffed with all those sleek plastic power boats, are like the Long Island Expressway minus the painted lanes.
The American victory over manifest evil in World War Two was so total that there was no one else left on earth to compete with in making and selling useful articles, at least for a while. And it produced a middle class so well-paid that it could express itself in a vast spewage of plastic and leisure across the land. The human race will look back on this society with wonder and nausea for whatever remains of its time on Earth. For at least twenty years, though, this way of life has been running on fumes, inertia, and promissory notes. The amazing thing is that these life-extension strategies worked, especially the past ten years when there was really nothing left besides a Ponzi structure of interlocked swindles and rackets.

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