I look at the economy, and the ‘recovery’ we’re having now (which is really only being propped up by the petrodollar* and quantitative easing*), and wonder what will really happen in the next few years if/(but really) when things get wild.
Where will our prosperity come from when our money is worth a lot less? Well, the real truth is that we won’t be ‘prosperous.’
What will happen when oil hits peak and suddenly we pass the halfway point of getting oil? We’ll run out of it faster b/c consumption is already faster than ever, it gets harder to get oil out after the halfway point, which makes it more expensive. Gas, as you know, is linked to every other price tag, nearly anywhere. The petroleum products that fill our homes like toothbrushes, carpets, nail polish, soap, shoes, anything plastic, and on and on will be too expensive to buy b/c…they’re a petroleum product.
Derivatives (and poor bank loans) were the bubble that burst in ’08 that started this recession. Well, it’s not over. That bubble was a 700 TRILLION dollar bubble, of which we’re still trying to chase down the drain, but there’s still tons of them out there now from my understanding. As a nation, we make only 14.6 trillion (and that number is fudged by a couple trillion). So you can get a scale on how big that gap is. In my view, hyperinflation, and near collapse of the dollar is inevitable.
America can handle a lot of stuff, but I think we’ve built our mansions on quick sand. That won’t work no matter who you are.
So what needs to happen? Well, I don’t think anything can stop the storm that’s coming to America’s economy, but I think that industry needs to be reclaimed in America. When we can’t afford the ‘basics’ b/c they’re made out of petroleum, how will we build our homes? Timber? There’s only so much. Siding and synthetic materials all come from petroleum products too. If you can’t afford to have materials shipped b/c gas is $12/a gallon, then how will you get the anything there anyway?
Natural building is the best concievable answer I can think of. It’s building with earth, and local materials. It’s stronger, cheaper, sustainable, approachable, keeps a steady temperature without air conditioning, and just plain awesome compared to conventional building.
I personally prefer earthbag building b/c of it’s speed and ease of learning. You can learn more at http://earthbagbuilding.wordpress.com . But I think that this industry is exactly what America will need in the next 20 years. We used to have innovators, thinkers, and industry of our own.
There will be more and more abandoned/foreclosed homes that are built out of junk, too expensive to heat/cool and are in unsafe areas that no one will want to live in. It’s already happening! But America isn’t ready to take a bite out of the natural builder’s apple yet. It’s too ‘exotic.’
But just you wait America, when you can’t afford your stick built playhouse, but you can afford a stronger, more beautiful, learning experience like an earthbag home, you’ll change your mind. It will be a great business model in the near future, in my opinion.
In a few ways I’m excited about the future, b/c it will open the minds of many Americans. Industry, American products, and American pride can be brought back to our nation when we have so many people who feel “entitled” that the government should give them everything.
*petrodollar: The U.S. dollar being used as a reserve currency, being traded at every single oil transaction. I.E. Germany buys oil from Pakistan. Germany changes Euro to dollars, Pakistan changes dollars to Rupee’s. Without this, our dollar is worth a LOT less.
*quantitative easing: The Federal Reserve prints money from thin air. (more money = less worth)