This indispensable guide to the next 20 years of global turmoil and transformation weaves the full spectrum of disciplines--history, political economy, ecology, energy, marketing, investing, health, and the psychology of happiness-- into a uniquely comprehensive understanding that offers every thinking person practical principles for not just surviving but prospering in the decades ahead.
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1. An Overview
2. Contexts and Causes
3. Toward an Integrated Understanding
4. Complacency and Fatalism
5. The Art of Survival, Taoism & the Warring States
6. The Remnant, the Pareto Principle and You
7. Ontological Forces and Analytic Tools
8. The Politics of Experience
9. Simulacrum and the Politics of Experience
10. Legitimizing the Illegitimate
11. The Forces Behind Cycles of History
12. Squeezing the Middle Class
13. When Belief in the System Fades
14. The End of (Paying) Work
15. Interlocking Traps
16. The Crisis of Neoliberal Capitalism
17. Models of Transformation
18. The Structure of Happiness
19. Over-Reach and Inequality
20. Insurmountable Barriers to Structural Reform
21. Incentives to Opt Out, Disincentives to Protest
22. The Process of Internal Transformation
23. The Structure of Change
24. The Principles of Systemic Response
25. Applying the Principles
26. Structuring the New American State
I view this book (and all books) as an exchange of value: the author offers ideas, concepts, resources or entertainment in exchange for a sum of money (or if we were neighbors, a homemade pie, fresh vegetables, an hour repairing my bicycle, etc.)
Since I am self-supporting and do not draw a paycheck from any investment firm, university, think tank, government agency or corporation, the few dollars I earn from your purchase of the book are important, especially considering that books not promoted by large publishers are fortunate to sell a few hundred copies. If sales of this book are typical, my compensation for the year it took to write the book will be modest indeed.
The exchange value of the full-version print book ($19.95) is approximately one meal at a fast-food restaurant or two tickets to a first-run movie. The price of the ebook (downloadable) versions is $9.95, less than one small takeout cheese pizza.
It is a peculiarity of our culture that people will spend $20 for two
tickets to a 90-minute movie or on a restaurant lunch for two, yet a $20 book is
"too expensive." Is $20 for a book which might change your understanding of
society, economy and prosperity really "too expensive"?
If you cannot afford to buy the full version book, email me the contact information of your local library; perhaps they will buy one or accept a donated copy from me.
Why I created Survival+ The Primer
Reader feedback persuaded me that a 400-page book is a daunting prospect for many, and so I decided to create an Introduction to Survival+ that is only a third the length (48,000 words, 134 pages) of the full version. It is not a summary--there is simply no way to summarize 396 pages into 134 pages--but The Primer serves to introduce key Survival+ concepts and principles for a modest cost: $5.95 for the ebook or $9.95 for the print version.
Those seeking a quick read will find The Primer fits the bill. It is both a
stand-alone work and an introduction to the full version.
"I've been a big fan of Charles Hugh Smith's insights since the day I first stumbled across his Of Two Minds blog. In Survival+ , he sets out a thoughtful and provocative vision of our future that should not be missed." Michael J. Panzner , author of When Giants Fall and Financial Armageddon
With crisis comes opportunity for positive transformation: this is the central theme of Survival+: Structuring Prosperity for Yourself and the Nation which I published in October 2009.
Survival+ The Primer is an introduction to many of the key concepts of the full 140,000-word book. While it is impossible to distill all the ideas into a short primer, we can at least address these key understandings:
-- The status quo of a rapidly expanding Savior State in thrall to global cartels is heading for inevitable insolvency
-- Though the devolution and insolvency of the debt-based status quo is driven by large-scale forces, the opportunities will be small-scale and open to individuals, families and communities.
-- Though the forces at work are global, we are not powerless. As individuals, we have the power to create our own transformation.
This can be expressed very simply: we are what we do every day.
In a very real way, we "vote" for our health by what we choose to put in our mouths three times a day, just as we "vote" on which kinds of food and companies we support when we buy the food.
Every purchase we make is a "vote" for or against a high-cost, debt-serf lifestyle that serves the interests of Power Elites and cartels.
Every hour we spend "consuming" mass media "entertainment" is a "vote" in favor of passivity, powerlessness and propaganda. Every time we turn off the mass media we are "voting" for our own productivity and well-being.
Every time we offer our effort to others in voluntary social networks, we "vote" for the reciprocity and trust which are the foundations of sustainable communities.
Every vote for the incumbent politician is a vote for a doomed status quo that is in servitude to Power Elites (with rare exceptions).
Readers of my weblog often ask for a "checklist" of specific recommendations: jobs to seek, the best locales to move to, etc. But no checklist can apply to us all; we're each a unique mix of interests, talents, history and family/social networks. The only person who can sort out what's best for you is you.
What I can offer is a set of "first principles" which can help guide our analysis and
decisionmaking in the Great Transformation ahead.
1. An Overview
2. The Crisis of Predatory Global Capitalism
3. Over-Reach and Inequality
4. Insurmountable Barriers to Structural Reform
5. The Politics of Experience
6. Propaganda and the Politics of Experience
7. The Art of Survival, Taoism and the Warring States
8. The Remnant, the Pareto Principle and You
9. The Structure of Happiness
10. The Process of Internal Transformation
11. The Principles of Systemic Response
12. Structuring the New American State