Farming and the Collapse of Complex Societies


  Meanwhile down on the farm………….I will try to do a little farm blogging as time permits. Last week was not a good one as we lost 2 lambs to Clostridium Perfringens, a killer of lambs who aren’t vaccinated. Clostridium lives in the soil. One variety causes Tetanus as well as food poisoning.. We are down to a 2 month supply of forage and will need to resupply in case of a national lockdown.  WE still have 2 feet of snow on the ground making storage and movement a struggle.I am not confident of nationally  secure  supermarket food supplies and it wouldn’t surprise me to see the military get involved to deliver food. I have long said the dense cities are at great risk of supply chain issues and social unrest. Desperate people do desperate things and martial law is not out of the question. Our armed 2nd amendment citizenry poses a real danger of blood in the streets. We here in flyover country will probably see a delay in clusters for a while( I hope) but if we let the tourists come that bet is off. Local gossip is the national parks will be open with no fees.  This could be very bad for our gateway communities. Many of our locals here are ignoring pleas for social isolation and if this continues the next cluster is nigh. Our hospital is woefully unprepared. They claim they are fully prepared. Nurses there have told us they are short masks, gloves and gowns. They have a  screening tent out front of the ER but no  electrical power. Bring your own flashlight. We can do corolla tests here but Labcorp sends it to Cheyennne and it takes 7 days for results. With cases and deaths doubling every 3 days in Europe right now, 7 days is too long to be of value. We are holding up fine psychologically and get out every day for walks and exercise but rarely see any others and keep our distance if we do. My hip replacement was cancelled 16 hrs before I was to go under the knife and I am  still limping around. I have no hope that elective surgery will return any time soon and who would go into a hospital now? My dad used to say: ”Stay out of hospitals. People die there.”  I expect that a tourist shi__hole like Jackson will suffer economically and the service people will drift away soon. Most people here are hoping for a short lived downturn but I am unconvinced. I think this is the great inflection point I have been blogging about for many many years. This country and much of the world is following an unsustainable economic and social/environmental model working too little at productive jobs, traveling too much, using too much energy and getting too little exercise. We eat too many low nutrient high fat and high salt foods, become too fat and waste our lives away staring at the absurdities of those blue  screens and antisocial media  getting ever more lonely and isolated and ultimately angry at our sorry existence but not knowing why. The neoliberal economic community of academic and government economists have finally been revealed for what they have always been: deluded high priests and viziers staring at their invented models, issuing deliberately manipulated statistics to cover up the real underlying pathology of inequality and resorting to glorifying the magic of  financialization where money is made in vast amounts by a few elites weaving their algorithms into computer fabric to make  money trading paper money. It does appear to me that if the Federal Reserve and Treasury continue with their paper money printing we will not be short of toilet paper in the future. Right now the government is following the same model used 12 years ago rescuing banks and corporations who made colossal bad bets and missteps as the big boys were privatizing their profits and socializing their losses. There is simply no justification to rescuing the airline industry or the cruise industry because of their impending bankruptcy. The executives will depart millionaires  but the airplanes  and boats and the gates will remain ready to  be restarted  with their debts liquidated when/if air /boat traffic demand returns with new management and rehiring  former staff. The best thing that could happen to the planet is for this consumptive globalized supply chain economy which has long utilized Ricardo’s system of comparative advantage circle the drain and head down to the septic tank so we can get busy building a new model that is better aligned to human and planetary needs. Will this happen? Not if the elites have anything to say about it in which case we just move up the collapse date. Stay safe out there everybody and BACK OFF!


Published by Rendezvous Mountain Farm

I was born in Cascade county Montana and raised in a dozen Air Force SAC bases. I attended Holy Cross,West Point and UNC in Chapel Hill(MD"71). Army doc in the last years of the Viet Nam fiasco. My wife and I live in a log cabin I built from standing dead lodgepole trees we cut from Shadow Mountain and regional local timber in 1976 . I've done a dozen different jobs including construction, boat building,magazine writing and commercial fishing and retired from the Emergency and Operating Room in 2004. We manage a small diversified organic farm including leased land which totals about 40 acres in the Jackson Hole valley. We raise a variety of livestock which includes some heritage breeds of animals and poultry. We grow most of our food and forage. Our land is irrigated from Granite Creek and the Snake River and we raise and bale our own organic hay. We supplement with food collected from Jackson Hole Food rescue which is mostly dairy, bread and past date vegetables and food from the grocery stores and restaurants.

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