To begin with, I’m feeling more or less well today, though there might be nappage later on. (Yes, nappage is totally a word. I’m a writer and I tell you it is. Why would you doubt me?) I’m just taking it easy (aka being lazy) so I don’t get myself sick again. Ox did message me to be slow.

Anyway, we’re getting on to harvest time, mornings are cool and crisp, and I was thinking of sowing and harvest.

We’re in the part of the country that is now right down nippy mornings and evenings. But nice. Very nice. And there’s a lot of harvesting going on.

I’m not actually friends with local farmers. (Yet. I have a way of extending weird network contacts as I live in an area) but I am friends with a bunch of people keeping backyard gardens, and I’m comforted that it’s not just me: garden harvests were almost uniformely sucky, unless you had your well rigged to water a lot. (I need to get that done next year. Our well is fine, but our watering system is iffy right now.)

And I was thinking it’s just all we need, isn’t it? A bad harvest.

Then I realized even with the best harvest in the world, this is going to be a very hard winter. Because we have morons at the controls who don’t understand where money comes from and when fuel spikes as a result of their restricting supply blame gas stations and gas companies. They — I bet you — also don’t realize how gas and gas by products go into everything we make and eat. So they will be surprised, yet again, when everything spikes in price. I guess they think it’s bad luck, or a conspiracy or something.

So…. they’ll reap what they’ve sown. Unfortunately, so will we.

I suspect it will be considerably worse in the rest of the world, but I expect it to be “tight” here, and perhaps uncomfortable.

Again, I say onto thee: prepare, prepare, prepare.

The best that can happen is that you won’t need the supplies you laid in, but you’ll have it for those up and down of normal life, including being laid off, or going through a bad storm.

The worst is that you’ll need the supplies. But then you won’t starve.

…. If worse comes to worst, my family is going to eat a lot of very weird meals. We have a lot of almond meal, and olive oil. We won’t starve, but man, we might wish to.

Make sure you have an alternate means of cooking, even if it’s “just” an hibachi.

Make sure you have pet food.

If you’re on a cpap or bipap and use water in it, lay in a supply of distilled water. It’s been considerably weird, and disappears from stores for weeks at a time.

And get ready to rebuild. I expect two to five years of heck (Not h*ll. H*ll will be other countries) and chaos and then we’ll have to rebuild. And rebuild is going to suck.

Meanwhile remember that everything you are, everything you learned and everything you can do are also seeds, and there’s an harvest for those too.

Look, as I should know, when your job/way of doing business/customary means of making a living gets suddenly destroyed, you feel like you were suddenly run over by a truck, and like you don’t know how to go on.

It’s not real. It’s just how humans react to sudden shock. And it is actually a physical in many ways. This is why buying a new house you really wanted causes the same issues as losing your spouse. Your body doesn’t like disrupted routine. Remember that. It’s happening, but it’s not what it seems to be.

There’s a whole of disruption ahead: remember that. Play the scenarios through in your mind, so when it happens you don’t waste time feeling depressed or like you’re a failure, or whatever. Just pivot on to plan B. Plan C. Plan D. etc.

All of us have seeded deeply and will have a decent harvest.

If you’re one of the few who haven’t, seed now, while you have time.

Build over, build under, build around. Get ready to take the weight when everything falls on our shoulders.

Atlas would like to shrug. But since there is no Galt’s Gulch and we’re stuck here with the idiots? Get ready to take the weight, until the structure can relieve us. Minimize the damage and the death. It’s what we do. It’s who we are.


130 thoughts on “Harvesting

  1. Almond meal and olive oil? This is for lemon-infused olive oil, but you can adapt.

    Ingredients for 4:
    250 gr/ 8.8 oz peeled almonds,
    200 gr/ 7.05 oz sugar,
    130 ml/4.4 oz Granverde oil,
    5 eggs,
    the peel of one lemon.

    Mince the almonds with the sugar. Separately, put the yolks in a bowl and whip until the mixture becomes foamy and, while mixing well, add the almonds with the sugar, the Granverde oil and finally the egg whites that have been beaten stiff.
    Pour the mixture into a round mould (26 cm) and bake for about 30 minutes in a preheated oven at 200°. Serve at room temperature, topped with icing sugar and roughly grated lemon peel.

    1. Look, I’m not saying “let them eat cake”, but if you’ve got the ingredients for cake… you can make sure it’s not a lie!

        1. Last year our local food bank handed out a box of cake mix and a can of frosting with every Christmas box and after, as long as the supply held out. (The frosting went first).

  2. Fleet Lord: “How is the Harvesting Going”?

    Nervous Advisor: “I have good news and bad news”.

    Fleet Lord: “So give me both sets of news”.

    Advisor: “We’ve gotten all of the planetary elite but so far the elite aren’t worth the trouble of collecting. Even worse, the harvesters are encountering much more intelligent humans who are successfully resisting being harvested. Even more terrible, at least one group of these resisters when told that we have their leaders thanked us for taking their leaders.”

    Fleet Lord (growing angry): “Why didn’t the observers warn us about this planet and what do my advisors suggest we do?”

    Even more nervous Advisor: “The observers don’t understand what’s happening and many of the senior observers are killing each other in their ‘discussions’. As for what to do, if not for the Ancient Ones’ Commands forbidding killing off lesser beings, we’d suggest destroying this species. As it is, as humiliating as it sounds, we should leave this system as fast as possible and hoping that they don’t follow us home.”

    Fleet Lord: “Leave all of the observers here and let these humans punish them. And we’ll leave as fast as possible.”

      1. Sounds good to me. Was reading a Cook’s magazine article on the difference between real and imitation vanilla. Their take: for baked goods, imitation is fine, and cheaper. For uncooked dishes, real vanilla is better. FWIW.

        1. When vanilla got too spendy a few years back, $SPOUSE switched from real vanilla to almond extract for her raisin cookies. Tastes just as good, in my opinion.

          1. I have noticed that unsweetened almond milk has a distinct vanilla flavor to it but I never thought about almond extract as a substitute for vanilla extract. I’ll have to look for it next time I go to the market. Thank you for the suggestion.

          2. AFAIK, rum makes a decent vanilla extract substitute…

            Don’t know whether that would be less spendy or more, though…

        2. Decidedly NOT for everyone, but I am told that one of my great grandmothers “used anise like normal people use vanilla.” Evidently I was one of a very, very tiny minority who liked her cookies.

          1. Umpteen years ago, I had some anisette and rather liked it. A few years later, I got a shot of akavit, thinking it would taste of anise. WRONG. Caraway. Oops.

            Grampa Pete liked akavit, but us younguns (and our mothers) would get some Cherry Kijafa at Christmas dinners. Haven’t had CK in a long time, though I miss lingonberries more.

      2. I learned just the other day that there is a grower in Hawaii that will sell you “green” unprocessed pods, that still have live seeds (so long as you have them shipped express).

        If I ever get that greenhouse built… Lord know, I have the heat, I’d just have to provide the humidity. (Plus hand pollination, yech. One more thing that will probably be sitting on the bucket list when I kick same.)

      3. Believe it or not, you know where my wife and I found affordable “grade B” vanilla beans for making extract?

        Etsy of all places. Got enough beans for two half gallon mason jars of extract from there for under $40

  3. I have recently spent a lot of time in NW Oklahoma and SW Kansas.
    There isn’t much of anything in this area except farming, ranching, and oil.
    I have seen a lot of crops that are being cut and baled instead of harvested. Farm reports on local radio confirm harvests are poor all around. Winter wheat planting is behind due to low soil moisture, as well. I understand this area is among some of the areas hardest hit by drought but it is by no means isolated nor unique.
    Farm reports on radio also discuss the ongoing cattle sell-off due to increases in forage and feed. Apparently, this year is 5% ahead of last year in number of cattle sent to market, and last year was already 5% above the 5 year average. There is concerted effort not to overwhelm the system and crash the price, but cattle prices are trending downward. Ranchers are cutting deep to just their “rebuilding” herds. Estimates are that it will take 3-5 years to recover herd numbers.
    Energy companies have increased their maintenance budgets for facilities in operation, but I’m not seeing new drilling rigs everywhere like during the last oil boom (2012-2015). A check of historical numbers from the Baker-Hughes Rig Count confirms my anecdotal evidence: we haven’t even returned to the number of active rigs before Covid, and somewhere less than half as many are active as during the previous boom. The industry isn’t ramping up production when they are told there will be no more gasoline fueled cars 10 years from now. There’s no 20-30 year payoff for new infrastructure.
    Take “prepare, prepare, prepare” on the strongest advisement. Things that have been in plenty for our entire lives are about to get scarce and dear.

    1. I’m seeing pumps being brought back into operation down here, but they are all on private land, not far (as the pipeline runs) from refineries. Ditto the herd numbers and the wheat. If cotton wasn’t irrigated, it’s not there. Sorghum did well, and some feeders are switching to that as much as is possible.

      The next few years are not going to be fun.

      1. We get more rain than you, if not by much, and the cotton’s no better here – it was left standing in the no-till, and plowed under elsewhere, but not harvested. Sorghum was getting baled instead of harvested. Cattle… feedlots are full, as herds are reduced.

        1. Well, Pima cotton may make up at least some of the shortfall. We’ve had a lot of rain here this growing season. (I say “may,” because the rain needs to quit, which it hasn’t yet – I’ll believe it when I drive by fields and see the nice fat rolls sitting out there.)

        2. … what do they do with the baled sorghum?

          isn’t that the kind of thing you could feed to the cattle if you aren’t harvesting (presumably for human consumption)?

          1. It’s baled to use as rough fodder, the sort of extra food you give cattle in the pasture. The farmer gets less money per bound than if you can harvest it and sell it by the bushel as feeder-cattle food (think feed lots) or for human consumption (sweet [low tanin] sorghum varieties.). Wheat or corn [maize] is the preferred crop, sorghum is a back up crop because it tolerates hotter, drier weather, and baling sorghum is a semi-last-ditch way to make some money off of the field.

            1. Makes sense.

              I am remember a story that my mother told me, about a drought in the midwest back when (somewhere in the 60’s to 80s timeframe) and the ranchers were going to have cull their herds.

              Well, farmers up in the Northwest, it seemed, grew a bunch of hay as cover crops, but didn’t do much else with it. Hearing somehow about the rancher’s problems, they sent out the word that if the ranchers wanted their hay, they could have it, if they’d just come get it.

              Apparently much amusement ensued about ranchers saying it’d been years since they’d bucked bales (The farmers had the hay in square bales, as they didn’t have the machines – or any reason – to make the giant circular bales). Mom mentioned something about the railroads getting in on the transport too.

              And the herds didn’t have to be culled.

              … I suppose our supply chain are so tight even in that respect that it would be difficult to do that same thing again…

    2. And meanwhile the usda (pronounced uz-duh) and their sycophants are cheering about record harvests.

        1. It’s interesting to watch. They have it down to a science.

          Last year we also had record harvests. Since the initial reports they have repeatedly “adjusted” their estimates (estimates? For last year? Yup.) until now we probably have something close to the real numbers. But no one pays attention to the adjustment reports.

          They count anything still standing in the fields as legitimate harvest, as well as anything destroyed by weather and what farmers report as silage. Until the market moment is past, then they adjust.

          1. Just like the government growth, GDP and inflation reports…they get adjusted later in a negative direction…

            1. Just like Aleksandr Zinoviev described, all the statistics are corrupted to the point of absolute uselessness. (Still remembering his presentation to the UIUC Slavic Department back in the late 1980’s).

      1. There was cartoon sometime in the 1950’s or maybe early 1960’s showing some Ag. Dept. of something and every building, every container overflowing… and one guy crying to another, “…and it looks like we’ll have a bumper corn crop, too!”

        Now, if one is to have an agricultural problem, better that kind.

        1. Farmers are never, ever happy. If harvest is bad, well, it’s bad, even if prices per bushel or ton are magnificent. If beef prices go up, well, “people will stop eating beef and demand will drop.” If it is a good year, “well, prices will drop and we won’t break even.” Several Midwestern farm wives assured me that if farmers didn’t whine, they’d explode.

            1. And for similar reasons.

              They really are dealing with trying to jump around on an unstable platform where there is at best severe damage, and usually lots and lots of death, in every direction.

              If you don’t pay attention to all the things that can go wrong– and make noise when it gets too close to that risk-factor– you’re going to go off the edge in that direction.

              Modern farmers (and modern American military) have a much, much bigger area for non-disaster, but we also cover a sufficiently larger area with sufficiently diverse needs that in any group, you probably have people whose area really is near disaster.

      2. I mean, that can be true in some places but not others. Despite our ongoing drought, my garden is going gangbusters – has been for months. We’ve gotten so much produce that I can’t keep up. Our fruit trees (the ones that didn’t freeze during flowering) have outdone themselves, and my experimental tepary bean patch is thriving. This is not to say that the farmers have fared well in my area, but at least their yield seems to be better than last year. Don’t believe all the news – bad or good. The truth is usually somewhere between two extremes.

        1. The Zucchini and Cucumbers are overflowing locally this season, at least based on the overflow we are getting from neighbors and hubby’s golf buddies (we don’t have garden or fruit trees).

  4. I just turned four score and four today. Rain and snow predicted for tomorrow and I’m just about done with my gottagetdone’s before the snow’s a foot deep and won’t be gone until after April. I felled, cut, split and stacked around 4 cords of firewood this summer after building an open pole barn/shack to protect the firewood and keep it dry.

    Nope, not bragging or boasting, just reminding you young whippersnappers with less then 80 years under your belts, the easiest way to assure a job doesn’t get done is telling yourself and believing you can’t do it because of age or whatever. So! Plow, plant,weed, water and harvest.but pace yourselves and include relaxation.

    Enough sage advice to you youngsters, I gotta go out and tarp my sailboat for the winter! 🙂

    1. Happy Birthday!

      May your winter be mild, your wood be plenty, and no bears come to visit!

    2. The Reader wishes you a very Happy Birthday! And he hopes that if he makes it to your age he is as active.

    3. Thanks for all the birthday wishes guys, they pleased and surprised me.

      Especially as I wrote my comment to natter and nag each and every one of you/us; no excuses, no yea buts, no can’t do that because, get out there and save the world even if your contribution is simply doing what’s necessary to get you and your’s through the coming winter! grin.

      & yep I get the boat tarped for winter and still had enough energy left to blow out 84 candles on the birthdaycheery pie made by my savage teenage granddaughter and her faithful delinquent sidekick.

  5. I am literally about to close on a house in the next week. My brain is in panic mode, trying to convince me I’ve made a mistake. Bringing up every possibility for disaster, all the previous disasters that resulted from me not shooting myself in the foot to avoid being blamed for not hitting the moon.

    The fact is, this time next week I should have three acres and a house, with plants coming to go in the ground. More coming next spring, if we survive that long. If not, I will turn my new house into a nursery and be able to plant seedlings next spring.

    Tree seedlings (apples, pears, peaches, chestnuts, plums, almonds, cherries) will go in the following spring.

    I refuse to listen to the “you can’t” voice, and if I miss the moon at least there’s no emergency room visit because I shot myself in the foot.

  6. I feel bad for the vendors at the local art show this weekend. It was nearly dead. I wandered by. I’ll stop again tomorrow. But I put $74 in my tank today (Gas climbed about sixty cents a gallon between one tank and the next.) and I just don’t feel spendy.

    1. We went to a community fair and market in Cibolo yesterday – lots of vendors, crafters and small merchants and the place was jammed with people. First time it had been held in three years. I wasn’t feeling spendy, but my daughter was.

  7. I’m making sure to stock up every time I go to the store by buying an extra two cans of stuff of anything. Immediately ordering my medications. I’ve got something like a year’s worth of multivitamins and such.

    And, seed dispensers as needed.

      1. I’m trying to convince my family to do a dumpster run so we can clear out enough space to stockpile a little more stuff. Not Mormon-crazy “have enough of everything for a year,” but if we can live for a month on what we got stocked, I’ll be happy.

      2. We have a lot of LDS around here. A year’s supply ain’t crazy if you can deal with it. FWIW, it costs me a minimum of 3 gallons of gasoline to do grocery shopping. So far, it’s weekly but if we had to, we could do all right.

        1. Arggh. Yesterday, Gas Buddy indicated that gasoline in Flyover Falls was $4.39 a gallon. Today, the same stations are running $5.19. The Subie gets 50% better mileage than the pickup. Can’t see using the truck any more than I absolutely have to. Pity; it’s comfortable.

          And Kate Brown is pushing “Green Energy”. Is that the same shade that meat turns when the refrigeration craps out for too long?

          1. 9/23/2022
            Eugene Costco $3.99
            Eugene Division FM $4.05

            Eugene Costco $5.05
            Eugene Division FM $5.29

            9/30/2022 GasBuddy
            (Note. GasBuddy hasn’t been exactly accurate, over the last week. Gas could have dropped. Hubby paid (price) – $0.50, when he filled up Friday. One side benefit to higher fuel prices is the FM (Kroger) fuel discount grows fast. Ditto with the Annual Costco and Costco Visa rebates. *** I know, that isn’t “Better” ***)
            Eugene Costco $5.19
            Eugene Division FM $5.29

            We do not own a pickup anymore. Santa Fe’s overall averages are running ~30 mpg (2020, one hubby drives) and ~22 MPG (2019, one I drive … I do not drive far or even daily, maybe 10 total miles when Costco/Petsmart is in the drive loop, other wise 5 mile loop. Hubby drives ~50 miles round trip, golf.)

  8. Distilled water was getting tough to find, so I broke down and bought a Waterwise distiller. (waterwise dot com) They’re decidedly not cheap (mine was $370), but last a fairly long time (IIRC, the previous one lasted over 15 (20?) years until the heating plate warped.

    They have a stovetop unit (as do others on the ‘zon), but unless you’re offgrid, I’d pass. I keep roughly 8 weeks supply on hand, so do a one gallon batch every couple of weeks. If power goes out, I’d pick a sunny day and use the largest solar system, or swipe from the battery refill stash. That one is 12 gallons… (Personal preference; I use storebought distilled for the batteries and homebrew for CPAP.)

    FWIW, it’s about 4 hours to do a run of a gallon. I top off my chamber nightly and clean it once a week. YMMV.

    1. Growing up the folks kept a dehumidifier running in the basement all summer long.
      Mom would save the water from the tank to use in her steam iron claiming is was just as pure as distilled water from the store and free for the taking.

      1. It’s not ‘free’ — especially not with today’s electric rates — but it is pretty pure. Just depends on how much dust is in the air.

        Put a bucket under your air conditioner condensate drain, too. You’d be surprised how fast it fills up. Thinking about how much distilled water folks are just dumping down the drain because they don’t think about it burns my tookus.

        The HVAC system condensate drain at my ex-girlfriend’s mother’s house was leaking because it wasn’t installed right. I re-plumbed it, with proper traps and vents, ran the main condensate drain pipe under the front walk and put a standpipe about a foot high in their front yard. They could attach a hose and at least get some use out of that water by putting it on the lawn.

        Power plant cooling towers! Condensing all that steam would yield thousands of gallons of fresh water per day. Before they bungled the repairs at San Onofre and decommissioned the reactors, they were dumping four gigawatts of waste heat into the ocean. They’re still doing the same thing at Diablo Canyon. They could use that heat to produce millions of gallons of fresh water every day. Idjits!!
        People can make stupid mistakes, but only the government can force everybody to make the SAME stupid mistakes.

        1. But, but, but! The critters around Diablo Canyon are used to that heat! Using it for water generation would be a crime against, er, ecological consistency! I’m sure the Coastal Commission would put a stop to such foolishness.

          Did I forget the /sarc tag?

      2. Dad did the basement dehumidifier trick, too. Something about the Midwest means you’re gonna have some amazing moisture below ground level.

        Don’t think I’d want it unmodified for the CPAP machine, but it would have been good feedstock when I lived in San Jose and distilled tap water. The lees from a run were nasty!.

  9. If you have any planting space available, plant sweet potatoes. They have the most nutrients of any vegetable. Twice as much as the #2 plant.

    Also, I just saw this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wRT7P-VKM0k I think he says a lot of things that put a different spin on things we talk about here all the time.

    1. If you live in a drought-prone area, tepary beans are also very nutritious, and need almost no inputs. But don’t plant just one thing – plant a whole lot of different things. That way if one crop fails, you’ve got backups.

      1. Diversity, the real kind, is beneficial.
        The phony-baloney-woky kind is worse than useless.
        If it was merely useless, it’d be wasteful, but not otherwise actively harmful.

      2. I heard a fascinating talk about the benefits of regional crop variation, and why reducing the current monoculture would be a good idea. The speaker was also honest and admitted that 1) it’s not popular with a lot of people and 2) it makes planting and harvesting more expensive because you can’t do bulk if four neighbors are planting four different crops (wheat, corn, teff, barley, oats, canola, whatever).

        1. Would it be a good idea?

          Well, yes, if the drawbacks didn’t outweigh the benefits. Ah, but those drawbacks… that would be why it’s not currently done, even if it’s not the optimum for other considerations.

          1. If the cost of chemicals (herbicides, pesticides) gets much higher, than going to a greater variety of crops balances out the higher fuel cost for most regions. Note, this doesn’t include irrigation vs. dry-land and other things. The expert was from Iowa, and admitted that for 95% of the farm ground in the region, irrigation was not the necessity that it was farther west. It comes down to cost and benefit and “what will people pay for?”

            1. Absolutely. And for some things, you can get away with charging a higher premium. Marketing it as pollinator-friendly. Non-GMO. Organic. Locavore. Heirloom.

              We’ll see how the market moves in response to pressures. It’ll be surprising, though some academic after the fact will always be around to explain how it was inevitable…

              1. Theory always looks back, and unlike electrical theory, with human behavior it is more dangerous to remove the assumption of memory/strong time dependence.

                When you know what everyone did, you can update your theoretical model, and now it predicts what happened as inevitable.

                But, no one really had that information at the time, or before the time.

                Maybe it was ‘statistical’ simply from a missing information perspective, or maybe it was genuinely probabilistic. Perhaps the chaos theory, great sensitivity to minor changes in inputs, described it.

                Inevitable is easier to theorize, and discuss, so it is a common academic narrative.

                At this point, I do not see where I can go, except to babble.

  10. eh.
    I’m not where I wanted to be.
    I’d like more freedom seeds, and another dispenser or two.
    My wife ran through the stash I was going to use to buy coal for emergency backup heat.

    But all considered, it could be much worse.

    1. Honestly, I stopped using lip balm a long time ago. I just use normal moisturizer if my lips are just dry, and I use the “udder butter” lanolin type of moisturizer if they’ve gotten cracked. You can put beeswax on top of your lips too, or petroleum jelly, but lip balm is designed to make you shed skin.

  11. Can’t plant crops around here, only raise fruit trees in pots..I’m stocking up, but certainly hope it doesn’t get really bad…

  12. Those of us who do study history are still to be condemned, by those who don’t, to repeat it.

    1. I’ve rendered that down to:

      “Those who do not remember the lessons of history are doomed to repeat the mistakes. Those who do remember are doomed to watch everybody else repeat them.”

  13. And let us not forget to thank the wunderkind in Wahington whose cure for the inflation they caused is to, rather than open up the supply chain (aka energy production) punish agriculture and small business with higher interest rates. Never underestimate the Ivy League’s capacity to kill the goose and give away the golden eggs all at the same time!

  14. Nappage sure is a word and we get some serious nappage around here sometimes, but not so much lately.

  15. A link at Insty is reporting that Beijing has ordered the state banks to start dumping dollars and buying Yuan in an attempt to shore up the latter. According to the article, the dollar is reportedly unusually strong right now (despite all of the inflation?).


    1. That will get very interesting if that’s in fact what happens. Bit of caution though, the Yuan isn’t really a currency, it’s more a domestic scrip. The dollar is, effectively, the Chinese currency and the yuan’s domestic exchange rate is set by the central bank. Why they would need, or want but that’s another question, to sell IS Treasuries to weaken the dollar against the yuan is a real question. They can set the yuan anywhere they like whenever they like. They ought to be delighted the dollar is strong.

      1. Yeah, it doesn’t make sense to me. I can only assume that the link (which was quite short) left out some important details. The only obvious thing that comes to mind with the information I have is dumping dollars in an attempt to cause the price to come down. But that would presumably only be very short-term as others would like snap them up and push the price back up. And as you note, it would effectively remove most value from the Yuan.

        1. One might consider that China might be selling treasuries because their banking system is running out of money or remember that China has been “dumping” treasuries constantly over the last couple of years.

          Facta non verba. China says a lot of things.

    2. The dollar is ‘strong’ because the idiots in our government aren’t mismanaging our economy as badly as the idiots in other governments are mismanaging theirs. This is not a ringing endorsement.
      Governments can only print money; they can’t make it worth anything. They can make it worth nothing.

      1. We are the one eyed man in the land of the blind.

        Don’t give the authorities too much credit or too much blame. There are real economic, demographic, and productivity reasons for the dollar’s strength. We are all captured by this narrative of “authority.” Yes, they are powerful, yes they can do damage, but they don’t drive things. Real things do.

        The reason the dollar is strong is that there are not enough credit worthy borrowers with good quality collateral. Unless we get very lucky, we’re heading for a deflationary collapse,

        1. Unless we get very lucky, we’re heading for a deflationary collapse,

          What do you make of Peter Zeihan’s* argument that, as China gets more hostile and more unreliable, the necessity of rebuilding our industrial plant in the US is going to fuel structural inflation for the next 5-10 years?

          (* yeah, I know, I’m bring up Zeihan again. I don’t think he’s a guru, he’s just new to me and I’ve been watching his videos and he seems reasonably convincing.)

          1. I like Zeihan because he passes the intelligent man test: the true test of an intelligent man is how much he agrees with me. That said, I think he has no more idea about the timing than I do, and I’m terrible at timing. Still, he talks about the things no one else will, like demographics. They’re all lost in illusion and extrapolation of recent curves with huge doses of hopeium. If he were less apocalyptic, we wouldn’t know about his analyses so I pay no attention to his predictions and a lot to his analysis,

            I do think China will collapse, I do think the US will have to rebuild its industrial base as China collapses, though I don’t think it will be as much as Zeihan does since there are still pools of workers in Asia and Africa. I’m not sure there will be inflation in prices as a result though RELATIVE prices will likely be higher in the US. In the intermediate term, I’m looking at deflation and, unless we’re very lucky, a deflationary collapse.

            Once the Ukraine thing wraps up and the prices of the involved commodities settle down, there will be gluts — all shortages are followed by gluts. Couple that with demographic collapse and you have deflation. However, the real deflationary collapse will come from the banking system, as it always does. The collapse will come via the Chinese banking system, though Japan and Europe are giving them a run for their money. Hell, even the bloody Swiss are at it.

            I think this is all imminent since things are breaking all over but predicting the event and the timing of the event is more or less impossible.

          2. I find his argument of wage inflation driven by boomer retirement and no one to replace them more compelling (where “compelling” == “matches my observations”).

            I’m seeing it here. There was an article (I forget where) about South Dakota minimum wage going to $10.75. Fast food is hiring at $17. EVERYONE is hiring. There are no people.

            Unlike Denver, there are young people working everywhere. Buying alcohol at non-liquor stores is annoying because most of the cashiers are not allowed to touch it due to their age.

            1. Inflation is change in the supply of money. Prices are a function of supply and demand. Zeihan only talks about prices and with prices only supply. I think demand will drop faster than supply. As demand for goods drops, the demand for labor drops too. In this case you have an absolute decline in population and shifts in the composition of demand. Simply put, what one buys differs over one’s life .

              This leaves aside the fact that we have a global economy and the rest of the world isn’t looking at demographic shifts but demographic collapse.

              I suspect that health care workers will be able to demand fairly high wages while people in new construction will tend to suffer. Investments that depend on growth, like stocks and commodities, would tend to lag.

              I’m writing here about long term tendencies and, as Keynes, immoralist that he was, said, “in the long run we are all dead.” the markets are still a mess because of the lagging effects of lockdown and the current effects of war on key commodity prices. Nothing in the markets should surprise us now as I suspect we’ll see it all over the next couple of quarters.

              Like I said above, I like Zeihan’s analyses, a lot. His conclusions, his timing, and his alarmism not so much.

  16. I think we came through the storm OK; apparently better than Raleigh. The City of Oaks had not a few trees down blocking roads and sometimes taking power lines with them. Apparently not much past that; it downed on me Friday evening that it could only be so bad since local TV had one reporter apparently doing a play-by-play on a Duke Energy crew cutting up one tree. Then again, it was a very large tree—it squashed three cars. The reporter kept calling it a “century-old tree.” I didn’t see it since I was listening to the simulcast on the radio but methinks he was short by fifty to a hundred years. That was apt to be TWO hundred year-old tree.

    Florida, we can all agree, drew the short straw on Ian.

      1. I strongly suspect that Pelosi’s following down the same mental health path that Biden is. She’s just not quite so far along, and not as obvious yet. It probably helps that she’s not under the camera as much as Biden is.

        1. The difference is Pelosi is an alcoholic drunk, self destroyed. She is just as far along. But like you said, she isn’t visible as much.

          1. Yeah, rumors about DiFi started circulationg a bit back. Unfortunately, the fact that she decided to reverse her decision not to run in the last election means that those rumors might just be attempts to smear her in revenge for her run (a lot of people were looking forward to getting her seat). And she’s not on camera very often, so it’s difficult to evaluate her.

    1. We took some damage to the RV. It was interesting Friday, what with all, the rocking. Damage at least temporarily repaired and the area as a whole did fine.

  17. Cannot believe no one has put this up yet:
    Throughout history, poverty is the normal condition of man. Advances which permit this norm to be exceeded — here and there, now and then — are the work of an extremely small minority, frequently despised, often condemned, and almost always opposed by all right-thinking people. Whenever this tiny minority is kept from creating, or (as sometimes happens) is driven out of a society, the people slip back into abject poverty.
    This is known as “bad luck.”
    Lazarus Long in Time Enough For Love by RAH

    1. The Reader foresees an epidemic of ‘bad luck’ in the next couple of years. He wishes he didn’t.

  18. My garden didn’t do so well either, but I think the pests were the biggest problem, followed by my own lack of planning / prep work. I did learn that chickens love tomato cutworms.

    I may try a few “cool season” crops such as root veggies, broccoli and even lettuce because hey why not.

    1. Chickens like all sorts of crop pests — snails, slugs, caterpillars, potato bugs. Just exclude them from your garden as soon as the vegetables start to look like food.
      Nietzsche: “That which does not kill us makes us stronger.”
      Primitive Man: “That which does not kill us is lunch.”

      1. Oh yeah, I have to watch them when they get into the tomatoes near the coop, because they’ll pull off just-barely-pinkish goodies and run.

        I’ve thought about getting some guinea fowl for more pest control but they’re so loud.

  19. Don’t worry. Once the disloyal farmers have been dealt with, the harvest can be salvaged by sending people from the big cities to work the fields. Everything will be fine and Marxist utopia will ensue.

  20. Devolution (of government) and decentralization will drive the center of mass to localities. Supply lines will shorten and being close to sources will become a huge advantage. Special identities will become meaningless when everyone is impoverished. History will not be kind to the scoundrels.

  21. Harvested a huge batch of okra this morning. Lost a few pods to ants which have been a pain this year. Will need to treat again and get more pest control while civilization still exists. Need one more batch for seeds for next year.

    Didn’t plant a fall garden this year, health issues and too demand for time from the employer. Will just stock more cans and stuff while it’s still available. 😦

    I’m lucky that my job is recession resistant, but like all, it isn’t Ragnarök resistant. In the case of the former I’ll be working all I want, hard part will be burnout prevention.

    In case of the later, the existing home owners, business owners and good renters know each other and out number the local riff-raff. Biggest problem is too much access to the neighborhoods. But a few locals that own the heavy equipment rental outfits say they can blockade the key intersections/bridges if needed.

        1. Natural selection. “That doe was selecting from MY garden and MY roses, so naturally she had an accident and fell into my freezer.”

          Pest control and accident prevention. And public health, reducing the likelyhood of the diseases common among overpopulated ungulates.

  22. So they will be surprised, yet again, when everything spikes in price.

    Oh, you sweet summer child. They won’t be surprised. This is intent. They might be surprised by the response they get (one could hope), but that prices spike and the economy crashes? No. That’s no more surprising then when I turn the key and my car starts.

    1. Ah. You’re thinking of the democrats of yesteryear, the ones who thought “the worse the better.”
      BUT we’re dealing with their brainless offspring. I swear to you half of them really think their policies will bring about utopia and are baffled when they don’t.

      1. No, I’m thinking the political class not the hoi polloi (and for this purpose Gropey Joe and Heels Up Harris are “hoi polloi”–it’s their handlers I’m thinking about). They’re perfectly willing to burn it all down so long as they get to rule over the ashes.

  23. I read this post and find it very interesting. I live in a senior residence I have a induction hot plate along with a hot air fryer, i have stocked up on distilled water. Do any of you have suggestions on else I should be looking at. I don’t trust the management here to take precautions for emergencies like these.

    1. Rice and beans. I dislike them, both separately and together, but buy them because they store forever and just require boiling water to make.

    2. You might want to look into stocking some survival food canisters. They don’t take much space so you could probably store 6 months work. Like beans and rice, you just need boiling water and you can’t get full nutrition from beans and rice. On the other hand they are a lot more expensive.

Comments are closed.