The Grand American Collapse Approacheth - James Howard Kunstler

Zenaan Harkness zen at
Fri Jul 21 19:01:03 PDT 2017

The Grand American Collapse Approacheth

James Howard Kunstler -

The author is a prominent American social critic, blogger, and
podcaster.  He is known for, among other things, a series of science
fiction novels describing life after the collapse of modern society,
an event which he believes is quite possible, as you can tell from
this article.  He has a new novel out about the counter-culture
movement in the late '60s.  If you like this author's work, please
consider supporting him on Patreon.

18% of the US economy is complete BS, consisting basically of 'health
care racketeering.'

For all his blunders and stumbles in his first half-year as President
(cough cough), Donald Trump seems to have more lives than
Schrödinger’s Cat. Or maybe it just seems that way. Or maybe he isn’t
really there at all (like the news these days). Maybe Trump only
represents one comic probability in an infinite number of universes
of probability, both comic and tragic. I begin to understand why the
folks in Hollywood are having a whack attack over the chief
executive: you can’t storyboard this bitch; it’s like leaving The
Three Stooges on their own in a sound stage to re-make Gone With the

But then, you begin to wonder: is Russia really there, or is it, too,
just another figment of possibility? Don’t try to figure that out by
reading the oracular observations of The Washington Post. These days
Russia seems to be at once everywhere and nowhere, like the Devil
north of Boston in 1693. For example, this fellow Jeff Sessions. Have
you noticed that his name rhymes with Russians? Hmmmm. And wasn’t he
caught chatting with the Russian Ambassador at the very same
convocation of Republicans that picked notorious colluder Donald
Trump to stand for President? That’s enough of your damn evidence
right there!

Yes, things are passing strange in the world’s greatest democracy
these days. To me, seeing the thing through an historical lens, it’s
looking more and more like the Salem Witch Frenzy meets the French
Revolution with a spin of quantum confusion on top. Right now we’re
in the first phase, sheer political lunacy. Beliefs have become
ungrounded from the facts of life. The guy whom fate or a prankish
deity put in the White House doesn’t even fit the template of the
world’s most infamous heads-of-state. I’m sorry to dredge up old
Adolf, but really, Hitler himself seemed to have a much firmer idea
about what he was doing than Trump does.

The ObamaCare reform fiasco looks like a tipping point toward a
strain of toxic political paralysis that might literally kill the
government as we’ve known it. Over the many months of debate,
congress never even got around to raising the salient issue: that the
18-or-so-percent of the economy “health care” represents consists
largely of outright racketeering. Well, they sure blew that one. The
major parties are disintegrating before our eyes, despite the seeming
sense of decorum that senators present on TV. The public may seem to
be mentally on vacation, snoozing on the beach in the midsummer
doldrums, but something vicious is in the wind offshore.

I’d actually go further now than the “soft coup d’état” scenario that
has Trump run over by the 25thamendment. It will happen, of course,
but it will not satisfy anybody. Mike Pence will prove to be as
ineffectual and unpopular as Trump, and he will be drowning in
financial and fiscal problems, and he will get no help from the
legislature in resolving any of it, and before too long there may be
a general in the White House — or attempting to run things from
someplace else, if he can. The whole nauseating spectacle will be
attended by violent popular revolt of region against region and tribe
against tribe in a great civil explosion of long-suppressed angst.

Too many nasty forces are vectoring in on the scene to overthrow the
dream state America has been languishing in. Most of them involve
money (or “money”) and the questions of how can we possibly keep
paying for the way we live in this country, and who exactly has been
fobbing off with the former wealth of every rusted and busted
community in the land? It’s going to start in the stock and bond
markets and it will be soon. And then the US Treasury will destroy
the dollar trying (again) to save the banks. And the bank accounts
will be frozen. And the loans will stop being paid. And the SNAP
cards are going to stop working, and pretty soon the just-in-time
deliveries to the supermarkets, and the resupply to the gas stations,
and there won’t be much that Mike Pence can do about it. He’ll be
shoved aside and the military will have to try to restore order in
the land. When they do, it will not be the same land we sang about
back in the fifth grade.

Up in a cloud somewhere over Ohio, maybe, Schrödinger’s Cat will be
gazing down on us, grinning.

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