The Collapse Will Not Be Televised

Like hunger, social collapse takes a long time.

The Collapse Will Not Be Televised

Most people think social collapse happens fast.

They've seen too many movies.

No, it's slow.

The world can't produce enough diesel anymore. We can barely produce enough fossil fuels in general. We still rely on oil for pretty much everything. We need it for fertilizer. We need it to run supply chains. We need it to extract the raw resources for our solar panels and windmills.

Without it, we're screwed.

People seem to be living in a general state of dread and anxiety, with fake smiles plastered over everything they say and do. It's not because they're planning for the worst. It's because they still don't know how bad it's going to get or how fast. Nobody will give them a straight answer.

Well, here it is:

You don't need to worry about an overnight collapse. There's plenty of warning signs, all around us. Look at what happened this year. Wildfire smoke filled our cities, and then our cities flooded. In New York, water was gushing from walls and ceilings. Sewers backed up into people's homes. It was disgusting. It was gross. It was incredibly uncomfortable.

They still had to go to work.

You don't need to worry about a surprise famine.

You'll know it's coming.

All the food isn't going to suddenly disappear from the shelves. It's just going to keep getting more and more expensive. You'll have to adjust your diet, until one day you're eating beans and noodles.

You won't be doing it by choice.

You'll be doing it because that's all you can afford, or all you can find. There's going to be rashes of panic buying and hoarding along the way. Idiots are going to fill their garages with rice and let it go bad. They're going to hoard gas, without realizing that it also goes bad eventually.

You'll get to see parts of the collapse on your phone, as long as your state decides not to ban your social media apps.

Nobody is going to go on the news and tell you that society is collapsing. They're not going to report the scariest stuff. They're going to keep shifting the goalpost. You can already see it happening. The news isn't talking about limiting global warming to 1.5C anymore. They're not talking about net zero 2050 anymore. Now it's about keeping things under 2 or 3C.

Now it's 2070.

You know who owns the newspapers. You know who owns the television stations. It's the elite. They want everyone to panic just enough to support ad revenue. They don't want anyone to act on their survival instincts. They don't want anyone to demand any serious changes.

They like all of this.

The rich own our government. They own the left. They own the right. There's this thing called the Overton window. It refers to the spectrum of acceptable political opinions in public discourse. Maybe you've noticed how far to the right the whole thing has shifted over the last couple of years. Nobody talks about universal healthcare anymore. Nobody talks about universal basic income anymore. You're lucky if you're allowed to strike.

Life will get awful long before people start killing each other over the last hotdog. Rents and mortgages will keep going up. Adults with full careers will be forced to take on a roommate or even two roommates. Poverty and homelessness will rise every year. Everyone will be working two or three jobs.

Fewer and fewer people will get married or have kids. Instead, they'll opt for parasocial relationships with celebrities.

They'll get AI girlfriends and boyfriends.

They'll find it easier.

Fascists will exploit everyone's economic desperation. They'll cycle between a list of scapegoats, trading blame for political power. They'll pass evermore draconian laws while singing about their freedoms.

Consumer debt will keep growing.

Homes will sit empty. Nobody will be able to afford them. Nobody will be able to insure them. Banks won't let them go.

Child labor will make a comeback. It's already happening. The elite want 14-year-olds serving beer. They want them in meat packing plants. They're going to work kids to death, just like they worked their parents to death.

Devastation will exist on the periphery until it finally comes for them personally. Different places will deal with different problems. In a few years, cities in the west won't be able to keep up with the energy demand from everyone blasting their air conditioners. There's going to be brownouts and blackouts. Climate scientists have already told us that in places like Phoenix, a bad heatwave coupled with grid outages could hospitalize half the population.

Neighborhoods are already starting to fight over water.

Cities are already running out of it.

The militarization of the police will continue. It doesn't matter who's in charge. Liberals are funding the police now, and the police are building cop cities everywhere, even in the middle of forests.

They're getting ready.

The spectacles will be the last thing to go. As society collapses, the rich will work overtime to supply everyone with a constant stream of distraction and entertainment. They'll encourage everyone to keep eating out, shopping, and watching movies no matter what virus is spreading. A growing number of people will be too braindead and emotionally numb to resist.

The concerts aren't going to stop. The football games aren't going to stop. The movies aren't going to stop. The elite will keep all of that going as long as possible, no matter the cost. That's what convinces everyone that everything's okay. If that ended, people would have to stop and pay attention to what's happening. They would actually feel how hot it is.

They would feel the despair.

They might do something.

The elite realized something in 2020. They realized that if you allow people to feel emotions and take care of each other, it kills profits. The system of predatory capitalism is one of sacrifice. It demands cheap, expendable labor. Without that, everything starts to crumble. It's going to crumble anyway, because in the end humans are not an ever renewable resource.

The elite probably know all of this.

That's why they keep building bunkers and yachts. It's why they keep forcing everyone back to work while they telecommute. They plan to keep their distance from us. They're not trying to stop the collapse.

They're trying to manage it.

They have every intention of leveraging heat waves, floods, diseases, and crop failures to their benefit. They plan to let natural disasters do the heavy lifting of thinning out the world population while they sit back and sip champagne. Every year, they gather in places like Davos to talk about building robots to replace us, or sticking computer chips in our brains. There's no conspiracy here. It's just a bunch of people with the same general worldview.

It's called mutual interest.

It's going to be kind of like Soylent Green. It's going to be kind of like The Road. It's going to be kind of like The Parable of The Sower.

It's going to be kind of like Idiocracy.

Nobody's going to warn you.

It's just going to happen.


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