The situation is dire – globally. Things can unfold very quickly, as we’ve seen in just the last 30 days. Think back to February and you’ll realize the fragile state of our global economy and geo-political climate. It’s possible that, with Japan and Libya, we are very close to a turning point on a variety of different levels, none of them good.
We have yet to understand exactly what the implications are for the ongoing disaster in Japan. In addition to the toll the Tsunami and nuclear crisis has and will take in lives, Japan’s status as the third largest economy in the world makes the possibility of an acceleration of the greater depression that much more likely. Hundreds of billions, if not trillions, of dollars are at stake. We saw what the initial shock did to stock markets around the world. They have since recovered somewhat due to central bank intervention and massive amounts of liquidity infusions. One small misstep, however, can reign terror across the entire global financial sphere.
With the events in Egypt and the most recent action against Libya, we saw oil prices jump significantly. How much higher can oil and gas go before the American consumer buckles, like they did in 2008? Couple that with the expansion of military operations in the middle east and the uncertainty of where current operations in Libya are headed, and we have a dangerous mix of economic and geopolitical calamity.
Additionally, we cannot ignore the state of the domestic US economy. Despite what many believe to be an economic recovery, the data suggest things are getting worse, not better. The US government and Federal reserve have to take on more debt and print more money just to keep the system afloat. Any deviation would lead to an almost immediate and utter disaster.
In his latest Woodpile Report, Ol’ Remus creates no illusions about what any prudent individual should expect:
Unfortunately, mean ol’ Mr. Reality has entered the building and he’s of a mind to put the pursuit back into the pursuit of happiness, which also means he’ll delete free-fo’-nothin’ from the list of inviolable human rights, betimes. Have a care, Mr. Reality moves fast. What’s impossible today is probable tomorrow and accomplished fact the day after. He knows the tipping point is in the rear view mirror. He knows we’re living amongst airborne rubble-to-be. For those who are paying attention his warnings have gone from background beeps to full-on flashing red lights and screech alarms. For those waiting for a ‘breaking news’ alert and “some sort of announcement” here’s the metric equivalent from Chris Martenson at chrismartenson.com:
It is with a heavy heart that I am now issuing the highest level alert to my readers than I haveÂ to date… The nuclear meltdown has led to a market meltdown. Market breaks can quickly lead to supply shortages and other unpleasant realities… The problem with these fast-moving situations is that everything shifts from beneath your feet and events fundamentally change so quickly that you do not have time to adjust properly before the next insult arrives.
Article, Alert: Nuclear (and Economic) Meltdown In Progress
Mr. Martenson goes on to say, “a market rout is on… Food, water, medical kits, shelter, cash out of the bank, and all the rest should absolutely be in place at this time. Get the basics done. Now.” This may be an understatement. Most intend to remain where they are. If they don’t have deep preparations by now it’s probably too late. Good intentions and crafty calculations count for nothing, only preps count and only serious preps count for much. Thinking about doing it, knowing how to do it, making plans to do it isn’t the same as doing it. Only doing it is doing it. Those planning to self-evacuate either have a prepared and provisioned bug out destination and proven, robustly redundant means to get there or they don’t.
It’ll buckle all at once, with historic finality. In weeks, not months.
In May of 2010 we saw what a single day “flash crash” looks like. Imagine that on a global scale, without any sort of late-day market recovery. To anyone paying attention, the events that took place when the stock market dropped 1000 points in less than two hours should have made it crystal clear just how susceptible we are to mass financial panic and sell offs. The same can be said of the stock market panics that ensued the Monday following the Japanese Tsunami.
What’s happened this year in the middle east was on no one’s radar as 2010 closed (save maybe those who seek out alternative news and commentary). Within three months, the entire region has exploded into rage, revolution, war and uncertainty.
From one day to the next a large portion of Japan was destroyed, 350,000 people were displaced, and their economy and stock markets decimated.
As recent evidence suggests, black swans can, indeed, play out in months and weeks – sometimes days and hours – and have a profound impact on every person on earth.
One can choose to cover their eyes and deny reality and the natural cycle of things. One can attempt to push it back with a pitchfork. But nature will always take its course.
Are you prepared to weather the coming storm?
The what, how, and when are inconsequential, really. The only matter of importance is how prepared you are when nature unleashes its fury.
Cover your basics first. As mentioned by Chris Martenson and Ol’ Remus, food, water, medical kits, shelter, and some type of monetary unit of exchange should be the absolute top priorities right now.
Highly Recommended: For insightful commentary and resources visit Woodpile Report, updated weekly.
Also visit ChrisMartenson.com for contrarian opinion and essays on a host of topics including the economy and wealth preservation.