Viable Economy #4

This is my fourth rant on a viable global economy.

Since I posted the third rant on December fifth, I have been listening  
to your responses and studying Dmitry Orlov (suggested by Joe Truss)  
and Johan Galtung (suggested by David Beatty).

Orlov argues that the collapse of many aspects of our world is now  
inevitable and that the current financial collapse is just the  
beginning. For details go to the article Joe suggested at 
. Also see Orlov’s earlier work, especially on the reasons why the  
collapse may be harder for the USA than it was for the USSR at 
, the article titled “Closing the Collapse Gap”. While the collapse is  
inevitable, Orlov argues, the aftermath is up to the choices we make  
now and he remains hopeful that we will emerge with a better world.

Galtung discusses the  “US Republic” which is widely admired and  
emulated around the world and contrasts that with the “US Empire”  
which is massively evil and hated around the world. He lays out the  
dynamics which are causing the decline and fall of the US Empire. He  
argues that while this decline and fall of the US Empire will be  
painful, the US Republic may well be, if we are wise, in much better  
shape afterward than it is now. See 
  for details (suggested by David Beatty)

I came to the conclusion that our world is about to change radically  
and will do so within the next couple of decades, i.e. very quickly.

My previous rant suggested that we try to do two things:
1. Convince every national government to get a Council of Systemic  
2. Get Obama’s ear on the regulation of the global economy.

I now believe the second goal is pointless. The global economy is  
going to change so radically that there is not much point in thinking  
about a regulatory system for it until we see what actually emerges  
from the ruins of the current arrangements.

This is not to say that we should all retreat to our own caves and  
simply try to hide from the avalanches bearing down on us. Rather,  
great catastrophes also pose great opportunities. We need to seize  
these opportunities.

1. Governments at all levels are going to be in unprecedented  
situations and therefore will be in desperate need of a Council of  
Systemic Advisors. We should push hard on this for not just national  
governments but for government generally (another way to say this is  
that government at all levels is going to need System 4 more than ever  

2. If Orlov is even close to right, there will be a much-expanded role  
for relatively small, local units. These might take various forms such  
as self-help associations, co-ops, or neighborhood councils. Whatever  
the form, these will be important to help people cope with the  
collapse of the old ways of managing commerce and the relative  
impotence of national and state governments after that collapse. It  
will take some time to invent new mechanisms for commerce, public  
security, etc. Obama’s background as a community organizer may turn  
out to be critical here. He, more than other national politicians,  
probably has some feel for what groups of ordinary citizens can  
accomplish. We should begin now to think about how to prepare and what  
could be done by our national governments so that the transitions are  
as effective as possible and the inevitable human suffering of those  
transitions is minimized.

I invite your critiques and amplifications of this argument.

Barry Clemson

PS. Can anybody think of a good reason why I shouldn’t sell my entire  
stock portfolio? And, what should I replace it with?


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