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Apu at the Kwikee Mart

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posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 01:07 PM
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TSHTF and the rise of Free Enterprise.

One of the assumptions of many survivalists seems to be that one day, out of the blue, the dollar will collapse and instantly cease to exist. I believe this is an unrealistic belief. Think about it.

Imagine Apu, from the Simpsons, in the wake of some kind of Coronal Mass Ejection or EMP event. All power is lost, and all electrical equipment that was unshielded is damaged beyond repair.

1. At first, people will crowd into the Kwikee Mart to try and buy all the beer and potato chips. Apu can only take cash, but sells off a lot of his inventory, especially the stuff that will go bad quickly---you know, the wieners on the roto-grill, the chimichangas in the freezer, the beer, etc.

2. As supplies dwindle, and people run low on cash, they begin to get violent. A fist-fight breaks out over the last of the slim-jims. Someone pulls a gun. A variety of things can happen. Apu can let himself be robbed, or he can break out the SKS from the cold locker (as happened in the Watts Riots after the Rodney King verdict). The immediate crisis is resolved, one way or the other.

3. Apu's brother Sanjay shows up, and helps a bit with crowd control. It begins to dawn on Apu that the regional manager from Kwikee Corp wont be driving up from Shelbyville to go over the weeks receipts. Apu realizes that he is the functional owner of that store's inventory, including the 15,000 gallons of gasoline in the underground tanks. Sanjay is worried that the dollars people pay with are really worthless, so Apu quadruples his prices.

4. Sanjay takes some money to the bigbox hardware depot and buys some plywood to cover the windows of Kwikee Mart, as well as some sandbags to build a defensible checkpoint for customers out front of the store. The manager at bigbox is still taking dollars, although prices have quadrupled.

5. Just as apu is about out of donuts and beer, a gardener arrives who wants to trade a shopping cart full of summer squash for 5 gallons of gasoline (his roto-tiller still works). Another customer who raises chickens is willing to trade a dozen eggs for 2 dozen squash. Someone else trades a bag of oregano for some squash as well. A third person trades a socket set for his squash.

6. Before he even realizes it, Apu is running a general store. So is the guy at the rival Gulp-n-Blow across the street, so is the guy down at bigbox hardware depot. Apu's store has changed pretty radically. You don't go in the store; you just arrive at the front, where Apu pats you down under the muzzle of Sanjay's HK. Apu tells you what he has. You show him what you have to trade, and then one of his kids goes into the store and fills a basket with your order. After the barter is complete, you're free to go.

Basically, in SHTF scenarios, I think that the free market will almost instantly re-invent itself, minus the economies of scale set up by transnational corporations. Most of the mega corporations will cease to exist (since they are only social constructs anyway), and the local employee will expropriate the inventory, and go into business for himself.

What do you think?




posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 01:14 PM
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What do I think? 2 Things:

1) You are absolutely correct in the theory of local trade of goods and services becoming the new currency and the norm. I welcome it.

2) You watch way too much Simpsons. As do I.

SnF



edit on 27-6-2011 by jude11 because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 01:17 PM
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I think Apu would be better served in a SHTF scenario by closing down his shop and keeping his stockpile well guarded until things take a turn for the better. Otherwise, Apu will have piles of worthless paper money and nothing to put on his table for him and his family to eat.

I've got my stockpile and under no circumstances will share or sell any of it.



posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 01:23 PM
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youre assuming apu doesnt get his head caved in trying to stop starving citizens from getting food.



posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 01:30 PM
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Originally posted by jude11
What do I think? 2 Things:

1) You are absolutely correct in the theory of local trade of goods and services becoming the new currency and the norm. I welcome it.

2) You watch way too much Simpsons. As do I.

SnF



edit on 27-6-2011 by jude11 because: (no reason given)


I agree with point 1.
Point 2? You can never have too much Simpsons.



posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 01:31 PM
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reply to post by Aggie Man
 


I wrote that part of the scenario to dramatize the fact that most people will not make the conscious choice, but will arrive at the new situation by responding piece-meal to each crisis in succession.

I challenge you to re-examine your conclusions about paper money, though.

Nazi Reichsmarks were still circulating in France in the Summer of 1946, a full year after German surrender. True, their value had plummeted, but it never reached zero. The occupation authorities and the French government of liberation bought them up to get them out of the market, paper currency rarely goes to zero.

Generally, even a weak currency has some value, but will only be used for incidental purposes, in case it collapses overnight.

Lacking a competing currency in the continental US, I think most entrepreneurs would still honor them, probably with a markup that increases constantly over time. Because unless you have a lot of survivalists in your neighborhood, chances are that there will simply not be enough gold to be used as a medium of exchange. That's one of the reasons I advocate silver, rather than gold, as a reserve in your survival plans. A tenth of an ounce of gold is a bit too tiny to trade--yet its still worth $150 this week, too much to lose if you are robbed. With silver around $40 an ounce, it is a much more convenient medium of consumer exchanges.



posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 01:34 PM
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Or, Apu decides that the money is worthless and only accepts gold and silver. I do like your notion of Apu becoming the man in charge because the corporate exec has most likely flown the coop by now.
edit on 27-6-2011 by filosophia because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 01:37 PM
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Originally posted by Meekbot2000
youre assuming apu doesnt get his head caved in trying to stop starving citizens from getting food.


Oh yeah? Check out these Korean store owners, during the Rodney King Riots in L.A., in 1992.

Especially at 1:02 and following

like to youtube video
edit on 27-6-2011 by dr_strangecraft because: (no reason given)



posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 01:45 PM
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Originally posted by filosophia
Or, Apu decides that the money is worthless and only accepts gold and silver. I do like your notion of Apu becoming the man in charge because the corporate exec has most likely flown the coop by now.
edit on 27-6-2011 by filosophia because: (no reason given)


As I mentioned to Aggie Man, for Apu to only accept gold and silver, there'd have to be enough customers with gold and silver to trade.

As long as the "greater fool syndrome" hold's true, as long as someone will accept greenbacks from you later on, there's no reason not to keep using them.



posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 01:47 PM
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Nice work, I hope Apu doesn't take too much cash though. He won't be able to feed his family paper,
let alone feed Marge too.

Homer goes to his lawyer having just asked him about divorcing Marge.
The lawyer said, "I'm sorry Homer, but I can't find any way that
seeing your wife on the toilet is suitable grounds for divorce."
At this point Homer has no clue what the lawyer is talking about and says,
"I didn't say I saw her on the toilet, I said I saw her doing Apu!"

The bigger problem brewing may well be the "flash mob" robberies. These are happening now
BEFORE the SHTF, maybe it's drinks and sandwiches now but what comes next?

Link talking about this



CHICAGO (CBS) — The teenage robbery mobs are at it again on North Michigan Avenue. Some 50 young people barged into a Walgreens at Michigan and Chicago on the Magnificent Mile on Tuesday afternoon. They took bottled drinks and sandwiches off the shelves, then ran off



edit on 27-6-2011 by KaiserSoze because: 'Don't have a cow man!'



posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 03:02 PM
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reply to post by dr_strangecraft
 


If history is of any indication it will really go like this:

USD collapses (I assume this would follow a period of rapid inflation)

At the same time as it's announced the currency is "gone" the conversion ratio is released to the public: 100,000 USD per new USD.

Everyone can now go about buying their processed hotdogs and "jerky" from Apu.

The inflation period would be the hardest, but because the entire world will collapse our new currency will be relative to everyone else. It wouldn't even need to change names either.. for instance, the French Franc collapsed numerous times and had the same name for well over a thousand years. So did the British Sterling. And, so did the Dollar. They come and go like fads .. we back them differently, calculate value different, make them up entirely, combine new nations into new currencies, etc etc etc .. no one has ever "collapsed" to the point where people starved.

And frankly, most people have more to gain than to loose from a currency meltdown .. because if cash is rendered useless ......... so is debt!!



posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 03:28 PM
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reply to post by Rockpuck
 


I agree with you 100%, which is why I wrote THIS scenario based on CME or EMP, rather than a "currency collapse."

Because, as you so cogently pointed out, currency collapses don't just "happen;" they are declared by the issuers of the currency, in one way or another.


Sadly, it's a concept that the vast majority of survivalists simply cannot seem to grasp. They constantly equate economic collapse with a DOLLAR collapse, which are two different animals. I think that they get so excited over the value of gold, that they have an emotional need for fiat currency to become worthless.



posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 04:14 PM
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reply to post by dr_strangecraft
 


I agree with you then.. there will always be some form of economy, whether barter or cash, gold or food.

The survivalist are probably correct that urban centers will be the worst place to be simply because, assuming for instance an EMP attack, they have nothing to offer in the way of a barter economy. "I'll trade you that bushel of apples for this rare modern painting...."


Suburbs and rural areas would be far better off. But then again, it also depends on how long everything is messed up, and how fast we as a country can adapt. Without a line of easy communication to DC, state governments would take over and restore order pretty fast imo.



posted on Jun, 27 2011 @ 11:52 PM
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I think that in a SHTF scenario, the population of urban centers would begin to decline almost immediately, as the weak and isolated fall away from the herd. Then as the stores of food dwindled, the survivors would begin draining off into the hinterlands.

The real question would be, how quickly would market networks put food into what was left of the urban areas. After all, there would be tremendous resources in the cities available for loo..., I mean, salvage.

Think about all the warehouses of medical supplies, groceries, fuel depots, sporting good stores. And miles of copper cable, fencing, and pre-cut "firewood" in the furniture stores overlooked by looters. There'd be plenty of resources to be extracted by teams from the country, that would make it worthwhile to set up barter networks near such areas, to feed the workers who are busy loading up all the excesses of big-box retailers.



posted on Jun, 28 2011 @ 12:20 AM
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reply to post by dr_strangecraft
 


Another thing to consider though is timing! Think about this:

If there was some catastrophic event that destroyed our electrical system, like a severe solar storm or something, emp etc.. and it's in October well that's perfect. It's harvest season in the Northern hemisphere and most regions will have ample food sources to preserve, can and store. Hell the corn and wheat fields of the Midwest alone would feed the entire population for more than a year. If it's in the middle of January well ... things won't be looking good for anyone, much less people in urban centers, but even people in the woods and on the farms will be left empty handed. If it's in the spring time there are some food sources and some regions will be producing fruits and cattle at that time, but the North will still be left empty handed. Most vegetables in the North won't mature until June, and even early plantings not until late April if it's a good year or May.

If it's a purposeful attack like an EMP or something, for the ultimate havoc it would likely be in the winter. Stores would be emptied within hours. Even thinking about it makes me reconsider stocking some food away, though in my climate some UV tarps and wire would be just as useful, as I could grow year round.




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