What Do We Do With America’s Laid Off Work Force?
Things are looking more and more ominous for the average American worker. Sure, the stock market may bounce back during this expected price fluctuation. Peak Oil peeps have long predicted a volatile and rocky road in the stocks as the descent from Peak Oil’s plateau begins to quickly head downward.
Just wait until OPEC announces in September whether or not Saudi Arabia can puke out some more oil from their aging fields. If they still have spare capacity, the market traders will wet their pants and the smoke and mirrors credit economy will continue the show for a while longer. If, however, no new oil can be added to the market, then we have reached the end of cheap everything. And since Americans are living on a borrowed future, having financed our homes, cars, boats, and just about everything based on the assumption we’ll be able to make money to pay for them, here’s my question: What will people do when money runs out?
– If you work in sales, what will you do when no one is buying?
– If you create stuff, what will you do when no one is buying?
– If your paycheck depends on people’s insurance or the government, what will you do when the money pool runs dry and budgets are cut?
We are seeing it happen right now. Foreclosures, bankrupt people and companies, added stress levels, reduced spending…. the halting of the wheels. Sure, you may still have some credit left from that home equity mortgage, but it’s still borrowed money. Unless you are already super-rich and out of debt, in all likelihood you will be caught up in the massive economic train wreck and life as you know it will drastically change. You won’t be eating out at restaurants as much (Peanut butter goes a long way), your business will be fighting tooth and nail to cut costs and verify Return-on-Investments, and unless you are contributing to making money – you will probably be let go from your job.
What do you do with a nation full of unemployed people, especially as the price of food and transportation keeps increasing?
It’s a conundrum. Mother Nature doesn’t care about money, her economics are based on exchanged services (it’s called symbiosis). Animals and ecosystems working together to make the wheels of life turn, you know?
Humans can do the same, of course. Professionals with skills and trades can barter – hey, ‘I’ll fix your fence if you fix my daughter’s tooth’ kind of thing. No money needed.
But bankers don’t understand that kind of logic. They just understand if you can make the payment on time. At some point, these two different worlds are going to have one hell of a showdown.