When the Sh*t Hits the Fan

Written By Christian DeHaemer

Updated May 15, 2024

It's often said that we are nine meals away from anarchy.

This is true. Many years ago, I was in Paris interviewing a wind turbine business, and one of those French labor strikes was going on. It seemed that the farmers were being mistreated in some way, and the truck drivers stopped work in solidarity.

For the first day, it didn't matter so much. The eggs were sold out, so you had a croissant. The second day, there was a baguette. But that night, you noticed that many of the cafes didn't open, and the ones that did had a limited menu.

The next morning, the store shelves were depleted and people were getting testy. A small store on the next block had been broken into. It was at that point that I made a hasty retreat back to civilization.

I mention this because in this day and age, people don’t believe it can happen here, meaning the United States. But when you take into account the growing debt load and perverse leadership, it doesn't take too much imagining to see a world in chaos.

It wasn’t too long ago that Minneapolis was a paragon of civility and culture. Now the downtown has empty lots where businesses used to stand.

The San Francisco Chronicle published the following map of downtown San Francisco showing empty stores:

Empty stores

Don’t expect these areas to bounce back next year. There are still burnt-out blocks in Baltimore from the 1968 riots. That same year, Detroit had the highest per capita income in the United States, if not the world — and that city still hasn’t bounced back.

Many people believe the last 80 years when the U.S. was the sole arbiter of global free trade and international rights was an aberration and that historically we descend into war and depreciation when the last people who remember the last big war die out.

We are at that point now. China hasn’t had a real war since the 1950s. In the rest of the world, the World War II generation is all but gone. There are fewer people out there saying, "Let's not get too hasty, sonny."

The point here is that one ought to have a plan. You should consider buying a house in a rural place where you know your neighbors and can stock up some food. You should seek a foreign passport and take some classes with the civilian-based, government-sponsored Community Emergency Response Team (CERT); it will give you a badge. Get an orange vest and a hard hat. These will get you through roadblocks and out of the city.

Furthermore, you should have some hard currency, such as silver coins. A man I met in Argentina said he would buy up bags of cheap gold rings to use for bartering after the sh*t hit the fan. South Africa sells 10-carat gold rings. When you are at the street market, they only assess that it is gold, not how much gold.

And, as always, stock your safe with physical gold coins and your larder with whiskey.

All the best,

Christian DeHaemer Signature

Christian DeHaemer

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Christian is the founder of Bull and Bust Report and an editor at Energy and Capital. For more on Christian, see his editor’s page.

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