Here we are, my first post on this new blog. I figured I should start with the topic that led me to creating a space like this in the first place, and that is with one simple realization. America could possibly be on the verge of collapse. No this isn't going to be some crazy conspiracy theory blog, it's just that, historically speaking, most collapsed societies fall only a few decades after they achieve their peak power. If America's peak was, in fact, the 1950's right on through the space race, than we are in (roughly) the area where most societies begin to see their decline. And there are plenty of people who think America is in decline. But a decline and a collapse aren't the same thing. A decline can be reversed, until you start rolling too far down the hill... and then you collapse.
Now it is possible America is going to soldier right along and continue being a beacon of power and prosperity (I rolled my eyes as I typed that), but the writing has been on the wall that we may be entering an inevitable implosion that many empires before us have all faced. American infrastructure is crumbling. The political process is far too slow and too gridlocked to enact any meaningful change. The people have been divided into two classes of the super rich and the lower, peasant class. Legislators can be bought by super powerful corporations that change the laws to benefit the corporations.
These things are unsustainable. All these problems and we haven't even broached the subject of the skyrocketing national debt and the generation of young people already crippled by the cost of education. So, if a collapse is on the horizon it is very possible we are already in the midst of it and we don't even know it yet.
What will an American Collapse look like?
This is kind of a tricky question to ask. I am not sure it could ever go the way of, say, the U.S.S.R. and dissolve. I think the United States will remain a country, simply because the rest of the globe is too reliant on the American economy. So, even if the government slows and stagnates and our infrastructure crumbles, it behooves most major global markets to prop us up in the same way we propped up the big banks after the housing bubble burst. That said if the collapse has already begun or is about to begin, then we will (probably) know within the next 15 years.
There is a good chance that the American Collapse will be relatively gentle and slow as apposed to violent and abrupt. And that is nice. It gives the people time to adjust and will save the people from bloodshed and embarrassment. But, even a slow and steady descent into fledgling mediocrity could throw world economies back into another depression like state. While China takes over as the worlds stable economic power and America takes a back seat a ripple effect will spread to all nations that relies on America for change.
It is important to note that there is nothing wrong with being an average nation. Many 'average' nations lead us in ways we continuously deny, especially when it comes to human rights issues. Canada's healthcare, police forces in England and Germany, gun laws in Australia all are superior to what we have in America today and those are issues we refuse to even talk about!
We in america have been beating our chests about being so great for so long, that many nations have zipped right passed us while trying to better the lives of their citizens. That is the cost of pride and arrogance, you refuse to acknowledge (or perhaps become blind to) the areas that need improvement.
A slice of humble pie might just help us change things for the better... and that is really what I want to talk about. How could we change things. Instead of running around in fear of what a collapse of our economy and society would bring, lets look at the opportunities that could present themselves.
A New Social Contract
In America the social contract has kind of run a muck. The agreement the individual enters into when joining a society is a handing off of power to leaders who promise not to use it to harm their fellow man. That power is given by the people to the government. What has happened over the last 50 years in America is the free market (left unregulated) has given a lot power to some of the people within the whole in the form of money. Those who gained a lot of money then began to use that money to LITERALLY purchase much of the power given to the government for themselves, thus allowing them to gain more money and more power.
The wealth gap in this country is growing and it will continue to grow faster and faster until we decide to end it (assuming the collapse doesn't happen). In a new America how will we decide to enter the future? We may be the generation that gets to answer that question. What will the new American Constitution look like? These questions, when asked, will be treated by some as treasonous or even heretical, but perhaps they are important questions to ask.
In my opinion we shouldn't be trying to write a constitution for the second generation of America. I believe we should start trying to write the first constitution of the whole of the Empire of Earth. Perhaps, the citizens of this hypothetical new America can be the first humans to set aside the rule of creed and country and push for the end of the Nation-State. Perhaps, if the right elected officials are chosen following an American collapse, we can be at the forefront of remodeling the world. If a global society could happen it would need to happen in stages and over time. I will outline those ideas in part 2 of this post, coming sometime in the near future. until then... Be the Salt of the Earth.
P.S. If you actually read this, I am amazed. I want to thank you and I hope you take the time to berate me in the comments or reach out to me on Twitter.