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Thread: value of money

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    East TN Smokey Mountains

    Default value of money

    another thought provoking piece from my favorite thinker - Charles Hugh Smith.
    bottom line is that the US is blessed beyond measure, but we all know that.
    lot's of prepper wisdom in his works

    I rearranged the order a bit, link to entire article at the end
    emphasis are mine
    Things work differently in scarcity: "money" buys zip, zero, nada because nobody with what's scarce can afford to give it away for "money" which can no longer secure what's scarce.

    When there's not enough energy and food to go around, who will trade what's scarce and valuable for what's abundant and worthless ("money")? The answer is no one.

    Parachute into a desert with gold, dollars, euros, yen and yuan, and since there's nothing to buy, all your money is worthless. Once you're thirsting to death, you'd give all your money away for a liter of fresh water. But why would anyone who needs that liter for their on survival trade it for useless "money"?

    Water and soil are not tradable commodities. Nations which share water resources (rivers and watersheds) have to negotiate (or fight wars over) the division of that scarce resource, but as a generality, fresh water and fertile soil can't be bought and sold like grain and oil.

    The value of a nation's currency can be understood as a reflection of its essential resources, what I have called the FEW resources (food, energy, water) which I would now amend to FEWS (food, energy, water, soil).

    If you want to identify tomorrow's superpowers, overlay maps of fresh water, energy, grain/cereal surpluses and arable land: those nations with abundances that can yield sustainable surpluses in food and energy while taking care of domestic needs will have wealth and power.

    There are two other attributes that matter: being able to defend your FEWS resources from would-be thieves and a widely shared national sense of purpose that enables shared sacrifice for the common good. Without that shared source of unity, the elites with wealth and power will grab more and more, bringing down the house around them with their limitless greed.

    Sacrifice either starts at the top or it means nothing. Forcing commoners to suck up sacrifices only exacerbates disunity and national dissolution.
    There are no guarantees that any nation will be able to assemble all that it will take to survive an era of scarcity. But some have better odds than others. Place your bets accordingly.

    Some more of my editorial comments taken from the rest of the article
    The US is the number 1 exporter of corn
    We are the number 1 exporter of soybeans
    We are 3rd in wheat exports
    Not in the article, but we are #7 oil exporter (and climbing)
    Also not in the article, but we are #& LNG exporter and climbing very fast
    Finally we are #3 in available water resources after Brazil & Russia

    So the United States is blessed with all the natural resources to remain a world power, of course our politicians can certainly screw that up, but I think Trump is likely to succeed with his America First agenda because of these resources.


  2. #2


    I've thought this way for as long as I can remember but never have put it in so many words well written to distinguish the differences between the scarcities.

    This is excellent, and thank you so much for posting this article! WWG1WGA! AMERICA FIRST! KAG!
    Making good people helpless, doesn't make bad people harmless!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2008


    T. Boone Pickens bought a huge amount of prairie lands in Oklahoma, Texas and Kansas......why?
    Those lands hold huge aquafers........of water....not oil.
    He also invested heavily in wind generators.
    Smart man.

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