NYCJunta.com was down for almost a week, for what reason I’m not sure, but I think I’ve finally managed to solve the mysterious problem. Where the login page was supposed to be, there was instead a custom “404- Page Not Found” dead-end but with a Japanese cartoon image and a link to, I assumed, the Pokemon fan site that hacked into the Junta’s webquarters.
The confusion that enveloped me was similar to what I feel while reading another report about the wall that the country has hit at full speed, the economic trainwreck, the fiscal hurricane blowing our roofs off and running them across the fields. Wealth has been wiped out in large swathes. Uncertainty reigns. Information pours out from the media in droves and we are bombarded with tales about how bad things are.
While the large majority of Americans are confident things will eventually look up – and include me in that group – isn’t worth wondering about the possibility that it won’t get better, the small chance that the good ol’ American experiment could actually be ending? Granted, I think it’s a very, very slight chance, and not very likely to occur. But consider: resting assured that the very unlikely would never happen is exactly what caused this mess in the first place.
It’s not exactly about the U.S. collapsing; it’s about our society breaking down by degrees. What would 20% unemployment look like? What about 50%? Today my co-worker was complaining about something and said if things get any worse, people will… they’ll—
“What?” I asked him, really wanting to know. “What will they do? Riot? Loot?” He didn’t have an answer. A lot of people are looking for answers, though. Are we being hyped up by a too-broad flow of numbers, words and ideas, or is Jim Sinclair – holed up on his 38-acre farm, shotgun at the ready – wise to keep the fuel and water tanks full at all times? Are you long on gold?
It’s doomsday times, with hardly a scrap of good news anywhere. The cover story of this month’s Atlantic features a piece on how things might shake out in post-crash America. This is the sober version. For a more breathless vision of the future, turn to the delightfully named “ClusterFuck Nation”:
At the risk of confirming my critics’ dumbest charge — that I am a “doomer” — the mandate of clarity requires me to ask: to what state of affairs do we expect to recover? If the answer is a return to an economy based on building ever more suburban sprawl, on credit card over-spending, on routine securitized debt shenanigans in banking, and on consistently lying to ourselves about what reality demands of us, then we are a mortally deluded nation. We’re done with that, we’re beyond that now, we’ve crossed the frontier and left that all behind, and we’d better get our heads straight about it.
And as if we didn’t have enough to worry about, Earth narrowly missed a flying asteroid last week.
The Junta is looking to convene a meeting to discuss the potential collapse of the system, and what effects it might have both on America’s position in the world, and on her own internal workings. Will the classes realign themselves now that debt-fueled consumption is no longer possible? For example, might less middle-class families decide to send their kids to college, with tuition going ever higher?
Start thinking about it, and let others know who might like to join us. The meeting will likely be in mid-April, at a decidedly downtown location – something that resembles a fallout shelter, perhaps?