Hunkering Down On Our Own Terms


September 17, 2011

Reading the economic wrap-up over at the Global Glass Onion has become a weekly cup of guiltless pleasure.  It’s not that I’m an economics geek or a whiz at matters financial. (Witness the monthly battle to balance my own little budget if you want proof of that.)  To mangle that trite old show biz phrase, it makes me laugh; it makes me cry; it’s a hell of a show.  And, what makes it such a guiltless pleasure is the growing certainty I come away with each week that, in all that hodge-podge collection of economic opining, not one of those economic wizards doing the opining, nor any of those opined about, have any more of a clue as to what’s going on in the economy or how to fix it than you or I do.

What a relief.  Think about it for a minute.  As the Titans at the top wring their hands and dinker with this or that while the global economy dances its widening gyre on the head of that pin, you and I are free to step back, hunker down and get our preps on.

Our leaders have already told us there will be no shared sacrifice.  Even in this year of unprecedented natural disasters, the best they offer is a choice between which programs for the rest of us they will cut in order to release the FEMA funds they hold hostage.  In a thousand different ways, they have made themselves irrelevant to our basic survival as they bicker and squabble over how best to salvage the unsalvageable in this era of environmental and climate deterioration, of energy contraction and a global economy dependent on continued energy expansion.  We are on our own.

How challenging.  Their self-inflicted irrelevance gives us a chance to explore our own creativity, utilize our own strengths, test and weed out our own weaknesses individually and collectively.  In building resilience into our own lives and communities, we choose to make their definition of survival moot.  In growing our own food, building and supporting local businesses, financial systems and agriculture, we choose to define the terms of commerce and consumption.  In working with and looking out for one another, we create the meaning of community and social safety nets and decide for ourselves the real definitions of wealth and poverty.

Such liberation.  To unburden ourselves from the constant pressure of their needs at the expense of our own.  I chose not to be afraid of the terrors they create for their economic benefit, not to need every new trinket they vomit out to sustain their unsustainable growth, not to yield to the frenzy of every new propaganda piece put out to pump up their dwindling relevance.

I’ve decided to enjoy the relief, take up the challenge and revel in the liberation of their becoming as irrelevant to me as I have become to them.  I’m kicking back, gettin’ my prep on and hunkering down for the long emergency they’ve created with their hubris. And I’m working to accept the responsibility of doing it on my own terms.


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4 Responses to Hunkering Down On Our Own Terms

  1. VaMom says:

    This is a nice, self-empowering view of things. I guess I would just add that in addition to insulating ourselves more and more from “needing” government “help” we will also need to help more of the people in our communities that are less able to fend for themselves. Just as an example, while I have always tried to give money to the Red Cross and other international organizations, I am now focusing most of my efforts a bit closer to home such as the local food bank just down the road, the collections for school supplies for needy kids, warm coat drives, and so forth. The coming program cutbacks will most likely be targeted at those least able to fight back politically. 😦

    • theozarker says:

      LOL, it really was freeing to laugh and realize they didn’ t know what to do about the economy anymore than I would if I were in their place. And I agree that we’ll need to develop our own types social safety nets locally – food banks, etc. I put some ideas up in the Community section, but even things like guerrilla gardening in parks and open spaces, maybe a couple of neighborhood goats to supply milk for families with kids, to at least get people who need help through a first winter or to just get started. The old “give a man a fish and he eats for a day; teach a man to fish and he’ll never go hungry” thing. We’ve always been a creative bunch so there are probably a million things we can do if we put our minds to it. That will certainly be needed as we head down the economic hill.

  2. VaMom says:

    Yes, I’ve often wondered why on earth anyone would want to win an election seeing as the problems don’t seem solvable!! Elect me … I’ll take the blame!!!

    • theozarker says:

      ROFL, sure seems that way, doesn’t i t? I wonder if it doesn’t take a certain type of ego to run for elected office – especially the president. And I’m pretty sure a candidate doesn’t have the insider knowledge of how bad things really are (or the realization of how little actual power he’s going to have over matters of the purse) that a president quickly learns once he’s in office.

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