Thoughts From The Precipice

by | Nov 26, 2018 | Headline News | 45 comments

Do you LOVE America?


    This report was originally published by Chris Martenson at Peak Prosperity

    As you already know, things are unraveling. The narratives of the past are being revealed as false and fraudulent — even harmful.

    For example, the fallacy of pursuing “ever more” growth. Growth up to a point is beneficial, but it turns self-destructive when it exceeds what available resources can sustain.

    As it is practiced, economic growth as pursued around the world today is now destructive. If we continue on our current trajectory, it will become fatal.

    It already has for an increasing scope of the natural world. Beauty is being ruined. The complex web of life is being shredded. Species loss is accelerating.

    This kind of damage is essentially permanent.

    Pollinator Collapse

    Right now insect ecologists the world over are utterly horrified by the declines in insect populations. “Crashing” is not too strong of a term.

    It’s almost as if the Rapture happened; but instead of humans, it’s the insects who were taken.

    A healthy, prudent response by a healthy, prudent culture would be to immediately ban any insecticides suspected of contributing to the problem. And to swiftly deploy a serious scientific resources into studying the issue.

    Nothing of the sort is happening in the US yet. Few other countries are, either; with the exception of France. This is really positive news:.

    France Is The First Country To Ban All Five Bee-Killing Pesticides

    Nov 21, 2018

    With bees on the endangered list and the terrible consequences that will come to pass if they become extinct, France has taken a drastic step in an attempt to save the population of pollinating insects.

    As reported by Organic Consumers, the European nation has decided to ban all five pesticides that scientists believe are responsible for killing bees.

    Both beekeepers and environmentalists have praised the move, but others, including cereal and sugar beet farmers have issued stark warnings about the move instead. They have warned that their crops could well be left defenseless against harmful insects aside from bees that destroy their produce.

    Just recently, the European Union ruled to ban three of the five neonicotinoid pesticides — clothianidin, imidacloprid, and thiamethoxam — but France decided to put a blanket ban on the two excluded by the EU’s ban as well, thiacloprid and acetamiprid. The ban from the European Union starts on December 19 this year.

    France’s ban extends to the use of all five pesticides both on outdoor crop fields and inside greenhouses.


    My prediction is that within 5 years, France will enjoy a resurgence in all sorts of insects — bees, moths, butterflies, beetles, as well as the birds that feed on them.

    If these efforts include habitat preservation and the planting of various plants that support pollinators and other insects, beauty and harmony will return to the French landscape along with better crop and native flora yields.

    Perhaps you’ve read the recent research on the process known as “co-extinction” where the loss of a small handful of species can bring about the collapse of an entire ecosystem.

    In this past week, the esteemed journal Nature conducted a review of the scientific literature on the subject, offering this observation:

    In particular, it is becoming increasingly evident how biotic interactions, in addition to permitting the emergence and maintenance of diversity, also build up complex networks through which the loss of one species can make more species disappear (a process known as ‘co-extinction’), and possibly bring entire systems to an unexpected, sudden regime shift, or even total collapse.

    (Source – Nature)

    In other words, complex systems are complex. We cannot predict what will happen when such systems are perturbed, because the results are emergent. That means they arise from the exceedingly subtle interplay of conditions which are themselves subject to all sorts of feedback loops.

    I’m personally very weirded out and terrified by the sudden loss of insect populations across the globe. I think it’s a very clear harbinger of big danger to come.

    The mature response when faced with a situation that is well outside of one’s personal capabilities should be rooted in humility and caution. If you don’t understand what the big red button on the control panel in front of you does, then don’t push it.

    Sadly, that’s not how society is reacting (so far) to this tremendous mass die-off.

    We’re currently losing species at the fastest rate than the past tens of millions of years. CO2 is now building up at an alarming rate producing unpredictable results. The climate is yet another highly-complex system with its own emergent behaviors, the impacts of which we’re only now just beginning to feel.

    So, in my eye, France is doing the right thing. Barring conclusive scientific ‘smoking gun’ evidence that A causes B which leads to C (which is almost never available by the way), they’ve combined both the direct and circumstantial evidence to justify a ban on the entire class of neonicotinoid pesticides.

    To date, while causation has not been definitively proven, in part due to the resistance mounted by the deep-pocketed companies who manufacture and sell these chemicals (which are real biocides for their broad toxicity to both invertebrate and avian species), data showing correlation between the use of neonics and pollinator die-offs has been clear for years.

    The subtler thing at work here is evidence that a growing consciousness is arising. One that also values non-human life and is willing to admit that science and technology have their limits.

    This is a sort of wisdom long absent from the power structures in place.

    I am personally grateful for this dawning awareness. And it’s coming not a moment too soon.

    New Money Awareness

    “Learn how to see. Realize that everything connects to everything else.” ~ Leonardo Davinci

    What do plummeting insect populations have to do with the S&P 500? A lot more than most people realize.

    To begin with, the trajectories of both over the past ten years are unsustainable.

    Both are artifacts of the human experiment of running an exponential economic growth model on a finite planet. And both will end very badly if continued at their same rate.

    Very few people are ready to accept that outlook. If insects go to zero, then in all probability so do humans. One does not simply upend a billion years of careful ecological fine-tuning and skate away unharmed.

    With a similar deficit of perspective, many people expect (and are counting on) that equities will continue to compound at 10% per year on average — forever. But these same people will stare back at you blankly if you point out that the economy is advancing at half (or less) that rate.

    How can the claims upon something sustainably grow at a faster rate than the thing itself?

    Look: the economy can’t grow infinitely, forever. It just runs out of resources at some point. Or room. Or maybe its raping/pollution of ecosytems ends up killings all the insects and that’s the trigger for collapse. Who knows?

    All we can be certain of is that our current addiction to infinite growth is a death sentence.

    Focus on Markets

    Why do I spend a lot of time focusing on the financial markets?

    Because everybody has a stake in them, even if they have no money parked there. So that’s where the trouble will first be felt by the majority of people.

    Once the trouble gets large enough and loud enough, more people will be willing to take a harder look at the more difficult issues. This is why I consider the financial markets to by a telegraphing agent for the trouble ahead.

    Part of my mission is to help protect people from unnecessary losses. We work hard for our money, our wealth, and it would be a shame to have it disappear in a flash due to inane policy errors by the central banks.

    So understanding the likely impact(s) of a painful deflation of the third and largest credit cycle — the Everything Bubble which we’re currently living through — is vitally important.

    Yes, I happen to think that we (as in humans) are currently headed for hardship. We’ve got ecological issues rapidly exploding all around us, and our collective energy policy is not progressing nearly rapidly enough to wean us off of fossil fuels — oil, most critically — in time to avoid serious disruptions to our way of live in the future.

    But those are harder issues to engage folks on. Huge belief systems stand in the way, guarding the entrance and preventing awareness for most people.

    So we begin with the markets. They are non-denominational, nonpolitical, and everybody cares about them.

    But our “gains” in the markets won’t matter in the slightest if we’ve collapsed the ecosystems along the way. Or forgot to reconfigure our energy infrastructure for an all-electric future and a complicated assortment of alt-energy devices and storage methods.

    More personally, whether or not your portfolio is larger or smaller will be meaningless if you don’t protect that wealth. The same is true if you’re not personally resilient across all 8 Forms Of Capital.

    A time of rapid change is upon us. Most people will be caught unawares because they have not taken the time to educate themselves. That’s a pity, but it seems to be a human constant throughout history.

    Please don’t be among them. Educate yourself and take smart action today.

    Thoughts From The Precipice

    As is proper for this time of the year, I’m reminded of all the things in my life that I’m grateful for. This moment. My family. Time. The support of so many readers — both those I’ve met in person, and the many I haven’t.

    The past decade of ‘free money’ issued by the central banks has given us all a bit more time to prepare, to get ready, to learn and educate ourselves as to the true nature of the many predicaments we will face in the arriving future.

    Despite my very strong motivation in pointing out the many ways our systems are failing us; I am a preservationist. And a conservationist. I think life, of all kinds, is amazing.

    I want human progress to continue. I want a better future for all of us. And I want to leave behind a world worth inheriting.

    Yes, we’re at the precipice. And while it feels like we may be in the process of tipping over, we are not yet fully over the edge. There’s much you can still do.

    Which is why in Part 2: Easy Come, Hard Go we identify which failure points in the economy/financial markets are most vulnerable and the 7 key indicators we’re monitoring most closely now that crash-risk and recession-risk alarms have started screaming loudly.

    As I’ve said, there is still much you can do with the fleeting time you have left. Educate yourself and take smart action today.

    Click here to read Part 2 of this report (free executive summary, enrollment required for full access).


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      1. Well you can start by STOPPING OVERPOPULATION. Like I said a million times, Humanity is going to die off drastically, either man can do it or nature will! Looks like both will do it and sooner than you may think….

        • We may be Dust in the Wind but you gotta admit; the trip over the edge would be one hell of a ride! What a way to go out.

          I’m reminded of the conversation at the Moroccan ambassador’s residence between the ambassador the U.S. Navy officers concerning T.R. Roosevelt’s proposal to take over Morocco in the wake of the kidnapping of Mrs. Eden Pedecaras(sp?) and her children.

          The ambassador states that “If we fail, we all may be killed… the entire world may go to war.” (prophetically, this is in 1904)
          To which the young ensign replies “Sir, if we fail and are killed, I certainly hope the world does go to war.”

          One of the greatest quotes in history

          • Ya, kinda like surfing the armaggeddon waves! Woot! Hand me another beer bro!

        • Just watched Idiocracy again…..So should you.

      2. The Sky!…The Sky!… it’s FALLING!

        Here’s the thing. The sky never falls when everyone is watching and waiting. The sky falls when everyone is saying “this time is different”…” “It’s a new paradigm”… Remember the talking heads on CNBS in 1999? Brick and mortar stores are dead. Earnings don’t mater – only “eye balls & clicks”. Forget Elon Musk. Wish him well on his trip to Mars.

        The world will go on and everyone will still buy Hersey Bars and Cokes. Invest accordingly.

        • I wholeheartedly agree with Stuart, we were all waiting for 9/11 right!

        • Quite true. I have won ticker tape parades, using this investment strategy, and am slowly teaching myself new ways to grow cola and cacao, where it would normally be impossible.

          I must have gotten all the butterflies.

          But, all the cows would give sour milk, for some people. The chickens would lay square eggs, and the bouquet would turn black, when the inconsolable pessimists walk by.

          • You should pay some attention to the negatives that surround you. Because you can ignore reality but you cannot ignore the consequences of ignoring reality. I have a lot of fun in my life but I do not ignore reality. But alas, the older I get, the less I care. Check this video out lol 😛

      3. Ya buddy, just poop out more kids and CONSUME AS MUCH AS FUCKING POSSIBLE! Thats the answer! Burn them resources like no tomorrow (and there won’t be), just satisfy your lust for more shit you don’t need and make more CONSUMERS to speed things up! Who gives a rats ass what it will be like in 50-100 years? Let’s get the population up to say 10-12 billion useless eaters, it will be a eutopia! But hey, you got your share and a lot more so party like it’s the end of the world (that YOU helped create for your kids)…..

        • The entire population of the earth can live in Texas… not so genius.. who dictates the proper number of humanity?? You?? The elites??? Moron

          • Dear devoid of critical thinking ruski, Texas is a BIG place. Now I want you to use your brain (I know it’s hard). Think about how much trash, sewage, living space, oil, copper, steel, all manner of resources one human uses up in the average lifespan. Now how big of an area would that fill? Didn’t think about that did you? Most of those used up resources are gone forever too. Think about how much contamination and pollution is created by this Texas sized population. How many square miles of land and water does it take to feed these masses? How much nuclear waste and radioactive contamination can we carry to power the masses? I know, out of sight out of mind right? The proper number for humanity (using logic and critical thinking) is whatever can long term survive without destroying the planet. Pretty simple and truthful don’t you think minimus?

        • One can find many good population growth studies on-line. The population will not get to 12 billion. It is believed by many experts to be about 9.5 to 10 billion in the 2100, and then perhaps fall off a few billion after that. Of course we can’t really know anything what will occur in 2100, but demography can be worked out pretty accurately. With the exception of Southern Africa, some Muslim countries, and southern Asian countries, the rest of world is experiencing falling birth rates, with many developed countries already below replacement rates.
          After 50 years, even China has started to allow women to have multiple children. Their population will peak out about 2040, and then start dropping off dramatically. They are only growing still because of momentum. Thanks to their one child per family policy they will not be the superpower we fear today, in thirty years they will be a nation of much older people outnumbering the young, like Japan.
          Today, five Asian nations have almost 40 % of the world’s population; India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, China, and Indonesia. Except for China, it will get worse in these countries. It has been calculated if the whole world had the population density of India there would be more 40 billion people on Earth. These third world countries, as you can see vast examples of, have almost ecologically destroyed their countries. On a huge scale in these countries they allow raw sewage to flow untreated into the nation’s waterways, entire forests are cut down, unmitigated air pollution is making air in the cities unbreathable, wildlife has been all but wiped out, and trash is dumped EVERYWHERE. They have rendered many areas uninhabitable. Yet many of these societies claim their culture is superior to the Western nations. As they immigrate en masse out of their homelands you can see many continue to do the same in their new home areas.
          The haves will continue to be the haves, the have nots will continue being the have nots.

      4. A very thoughtful essay, well written. Very New Agey. One particular line in it I find disturbing is this one:

        “But those are harder issues to engage folks on. Huge belief systems stand in the way, guarding the entrance and preventing awareness for most people.”

        One of those belief systems ‘holding back’ the New Agers is always us Christians and our carefree use of the earth as an ever renewable resource. Shame on us for believing in an unexaustable God. We Christians have done very well with our traditional lands, look at the beauty of North America and Europe, despite our controlling those areas for hundreds of years. Compare that to the lands of the heathens, arid deserts.

        What the problem has been is that we Christians shared too much of our blessings with heathens, letting them in power over us.

        We Christians won’t always be around for the new agers to kick around, some day soon you guys can have the planet to yourselves, we’re are going up in the rapture.

        • So uhhhh, go forth and multiply has no limit or consequences?
          Ever renewable?
          Thanks for making me blow my beer out my nose.
          Do much critical thinking?

          • And I have never “re aligned =religion) myself with any man made BS control system. I still have what I was born with (natural law) and won’t be re-aligned away from it. My god is better than your god crap. Do some research and THINK, the MAJORITY of evidence is we were put here by aliens long ago. In fact there is proof of aliens steering and developing man waaaaaay before jesus (no proof he existed). PROOF vs. NO PROOF. What became of the billions of people that never heard of the buybull? Are they all in hell? There is obviously a cosmic intelligence that created life, man just made up shit to gain wealth and control through religion….

            • First cause?

              • First govt.

                • If you believe in order, cause, and effect, which was the first.

                  • Cause.

                    • But then cause makes the effect which results in order. The hegelian dialectic.

                    • cause=problem

                    • If information and structure tend toward disorder and chaos, over time, all information is generally derived from a higher order. A natural order would have derived from a supernatural order. Life from life, and consciousness from consciousness.

            • We already have excess labor. And please explain how they would increase the carrying capacity of the finite planet.

              • I don’t know about the larger picture…but I do know we can produce one hell of a lot more corn, soybeans, etc. on each acre of land than we could even 20-30 years ago. Since then, every house has gotten at least one PC on average, every person a cell phone, etc. Quality of life has shot through the roof.

                But what goes up is likely to come down sooner than later I guess.

              • If you are more of a Cornucopian than a fatalist, who imagines some preset limit, then, most of the Earth has never been cultivated, and most of the inventions have ever been invented.

      5. I wouldnt worry about the loss of a few insects … DARPA is making some new ones.

        • Skynet is COMING!

          • Here are a few of my thoughts from the precipice…
            Man has never been free and never will be. The world here is a school in cosmic learning. Either you pass or you do it again. Man has always proven to be the most destructive, warring, greedy, power mad, easily swayed, stupid, no better than apes, suicidal, self destructive assholes imaginable! Can you think of a worse species? Well can you? I just hope to move on in my cosmic journey well away from this place. Perhaps I have failed in the realm of service to others but I just can’t help someone who doesn’t really deserve it. I have a lot of love and empathy for animals because they have no choice in their lives. I suppose a lot of humans don’t either but when it comes down to it, it is the parents fault. The law of nature doesn’t affect humans since they have medical treatment, etc. enabling them to live long lives and have shitloads of kids (consumers). In the animal world they are limited to what nature will provide naturally and survival of the fittest. In the human world it is the opposite. Since the oil age began the population has exploded 5-6 fold! Before that man was somewhat limited by natural law also. This isn’t going away, man will seal his fate and take this wonderful, beautiful planet with him. I feel for the plethora of life that abounds here. Man is killing it in ever increasing lust for death and destruction. People do not even think about the consequences of their actions, they just consume as much as fucking possible and throw away their trash without a care in the world. If you stand back and really look at what is happening on this planet, it makes you want to just exterminate mankind for his ignorance and selfishness and greed. I had a good life full of challenges and wins and losses and some freedom and fun. To bad the upcoming generations will never have that. I will fight for me and my loved ones, the sheep can and will F-off. Tears for the earth and it’s wonderful life…. the middle finger for man….

      6. This is not an article. It’s an ADVERTISEMENT!

        So we can “purchase” Part 2.

        No thanks.

        No thanks to all CM articles.

      7. Here’s a different look at the precipice. ht tps://

        • “The lives of so many are a meaningless march of misery and mindless repetition of daily chores. There is an overwhelming cloud of sadness permeating the lives of the masses as our repulsive culture, built on fulfilling desires, consumerism, selfishness and greed, ultimately results in delusional, disappointed and desperate human beings.

          Quinn explains the collapse of cognizant civilization as arising out of “social indoctrination” and the organized programming of children via the disastrous public education system:

          Our society did not become so ludicrous, misguided and defective overnight. It has been decades in the making. And it can be attributed to the purposeful effort by those in control of the government in destroying our educational system and replacing it with a social indoctrination system. Children are no longer taught how to think, but how to feel. Children are being raised by the state as nothing more than cogs in the machine.

          Children who question authority or do not act in a subservient manner are immediately diagnosed with ADD and drugged into submission. The public-school system doesn’t want high performers, critical thinkers or anyone questioning their government mandated orthodoxy. The ruling class (aka Deep State) wants controllable, malleable, non-thinking automatons to do the menial low paying jobs, buy cheap foreign crap with their credit cards, and be dependent upon the state for their miserable existence.”

          “Today’s human children are cognitively retarded compared to the children elephants. They are less intelligent than child dolphins, and they are less compassionate than chimpanzees. Most of today’s children have less survival instinct than a newborn dog, deer or armadillo. The youthful masses of modern society are trained for mass indoctrination and obedience by a sick, authoritarian society where every individual is a slave to their electronic device that tells them what to think and feel.”

          DAMN GOOD ARTICLE! We ARE screwed….

      8. Throughout all of nature, throughout all of time, everything is either growing or dying.

        If you’re not doing one, you’re doing the other whether you know it or not.

        Sustainability is imaginary, all things are constantly moving one direction -toward growth or death, toward generation or extinction- at all times.

        • Well then by looking around and doing some basic math one would come to the conclusion humanity is marching to extinction.


      10. The decline of the insect population as well as higher species is likely due to events like the massive and perpetual release of radioactive isotopes from Fukushima which continues to this day with no signs of EVER ENDING.

        But there are also natural forces like the emmisions from volcanic eruptions and activity.

        Then all ecological niches have predator and prey and human agriculture selectively fosters some species and human encroachment through covilization competes with other species habitats.

        Who cares if snail darters die? Not me but hopefully not sequoias or ancient bristle cone pines.

      11. There will be no “fixing things” for a sustainable future. There is no such thing. Human nature drives the species to procreate and consume until everything is used up. Like yeast in a petrie dish.

        Who is going to volunteer to have less and suffer more for the “good of the planet”? No one. Everyone will believe in their own fairy tale and their own “right” to consume over everyone else. Because (enter whatever reason you believe in).

        It’s called survival and everyone will look out for themselves over any other.

        Renewables and sustainability are pipe dreams. Humans will continue to consume and destroy until they go extinct.

        Much as we bitch about what the DC government does to others, we should perhaps back all their foreign adventures for resources so we can have the best of the last of them. Perhaps we should back all the bankers who are providing ZIRP loans to underwater oilcos so the oily keeps flowing even at a loss and for keeping all the plates spinning as long as they can.

      12. I’m also very concerned about the weird insect population decline. Where I live in the mountains (its a trailer park which they built by carving out a piece of the national forest!) but when I first arrived I had horrible time with all the insects!! Spiders everywhere through out the house and fleas and gnats– even in winter@! the only way I could eat was to constantly fan my food to keep the gnats away!! that was 4 years ago. Now, its almost impossible to find a spider in my place!!! What the heck happened?!! Only see a gnat occasionally– no big deal. No fleas now. and the spiders which used to cover every corner and under anything you picked up– they ARE NOW GONE!!!!

        • I think all the spiders are at my house this year. Every time I clean up a few cobwebs, others seem to appear.

      13. This has all been engineered. Agenda 21, Agenda 30, eugenics… the list goes on and on.

        • Mother Nature will likely have the last laugh.

      14. Nature and Civilization cannot coexist. One has to go in order for the other to exist. Make your choice (just remember, you’re part of Nature!).

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