Sunday, September 2, 2012

The Coming Long Descent

"Learning and practicing such skills can't be left until the first wave of crises hits, however. An astonishing number of people in the industrial world, especially in the educated middle class, have no practical skills whatsoever when it comes to growing and preparing food, making clothing, and providing other basic necessities. An equally astonishing number are unable to travel any distance at all by any means that doesn't involve burning fossil fuels. Most can't even light a fire to keep warm or cook food without matches or butane lighters from a distant factory. Critical skills such as practical ecology, organic gardening, low-tech medicine, basic hand crafts, and the like need to be learned and practiced now, while there's time and leisure to make beginner's mistakes."

This reminds me that Ortega y Gasset regarded America as a nation of barbarians covered over with a thin hyper-technical veneer (see Revolt of the Masses).

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