The world as we know it today is a far cry from the utopian visions of the past. I’m a kid of the 1980’s. While President Ronald Reagan had his flaws, he was the first role model outside my parents I paid attention to. It was an era of hope, economic turnaround, prosperity, and a shift in how the political parties were viewed by their constituents. In today’s global climate, I miss having a Reagan to look up to as a naïve kid who knew nothing about politics. I’m going to try not to make this political, however.
With the ever-increasing threats of climate change (the climate is always changing, I’m not a green advocate), the threat of man-made pandemics (call me silly if you like, to me Covid-19 was a man-made epidemic, right wrong or indifferent), and political unrest (I think we all see and have experienced some of this), it is becoming increasingly clear that we are living in the decline of modern society. I just read the book “The End of the World is Just the Beginning.” I honestly believe Peter Zellen, the author is spot on, and will be reading this again soon, just to remind myself of some of the points he made. My belief in the decline is manifested in a variety of ways, from economic instability to the breakdown of social norms we see on the news.
The following are nine signs where I believe we are living in a pre-apocalyptic society, a world that is quickly unraveling around us. From a crumbling infrastructure, man-made disasters such as the East Palestine, OH train derailment (as well as others), to a fear of the future, these ten signs are unmistakable harbingers of an age that is on the brink of disaster. As preppers, I think it is time for us to take action and ensure that our future is one of hope, not of dread.
Rising Economic Instability
The first sign that we are living in a declining modern society is the increasing economic instability we see coming out of the post Covid-19 “Epidemic.”. From the 2008 financial crisis to the current “pandemic recession,” the global economy has been on a rollercoaster ride for the past decade trying to make heads or tails of itself with countries struggling to realign themselves into prosperity. This economic instability has been further compounded by the rise of technology and automation, which is replacing many low-skill jobs and further exacerbating income inequality. As a result, many people are living paycheck to paycheck, unable to save or invest for their future.
Globally, economic instability is further demonstrated in the growing number of people living in poverty. Inflation all over is exponentially growing across all products and services, and In many countries, the gap between the rich and the poor is growing ever wider, with the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer. The middle class is disappearing. Lower middle class economic inequality and those struggling to make ends meet is one of the drivers of social unrest and unrest in many parts of the world.
The economic instability is also reflected in the increasing number of homeless people in many cities around the world (think, San Francisco, Nashville, Los Angeles, New York City, Austin, etc). This is not just limited to cities. Cities are simply where they are most visible as the homeless tend to congregate like a dysfunctional leaderless tribe. Homelessness is a direct and indirect result of the middleclass economic inequality and lack of access to resources. Indirectly, there are those that have made the decision not to go back to work and have lowered their financial class with the belief the government will continue to help them with handouts. The lack of access to resources, in turn, leads to further economic instability, creating a vicious cycle that is difficult to break.
Increase in Social Unrest
The second sign of a declining modern society is the increasing social unrest. From protests in the United States to the demonstrations against political corruption in Latin America, people around the world are taking to the streets to demand change, many times when asked to articulate what they are looking for they cannot articulate. This social unrest is a direct result of the economic inequality and lack of trust in government.
This lack of trust in government is further compounded by the growing number of authoritarian governments around the world. From Russia to China, to unpopular decisions made by our own President of the United States, authoritarian regimes are gaining power and clamping down on what they believe is dissent by those seeking liberty and personal sovereignty. This, in turn, has led and will continue to lead to further social unrest and unrest in many parts of the world, including here are home in the US from time to time..
The increasing social unrest is also reflected in the rise of other extremist groups. Dare I say from white supremacists to religious extremists, these groups are taking advantage of the social unrest to spread their messages of hate and violence where they can. This, in turn, leads to further divisions in society and a further breakdown of social norms based on a few interactions by a few people within the greater protesting groups. Their activity can spark mass riots and violence with little coaxing.
Deterioration of Infrastructure
The third sign of a declining modern society is the deterioration of domestic and global infrastructure. From roads and bridges to water and sanitation systems all over our country, many of the world’s infrastructure systems are in dire need of repair. This is due to a lack of investment in infrastructure projects by those that are supposed to be responsible for their upkeep, which has resulted in a deterioration of public services. These are first and second world problems for sure, however, being born with running water, electricity, heating and cooling, and a roof over our respective heads, we’ve become accustomed to those services that we pay for monthly and depend on them. If you are looking for one specific example, I can point to the water infrastructure in Detroit.
The lack of investment in infrastructure is further compounded by the increasing number of natural disasters we seem to see. From floods to earthquakes, these disasters are causing widespread destruction and disrupting the lives of millions of people. This, in turn, leads to further deterioration of infrastructure and further economic instability because the rebuilding phase can take so long to accomplish…
The deterioration of infrastructure is also reflected in the growing number of power outages, not to mention increased attacks on the power grid we barely hear about here in the US. From California to India, power outages are becoming increasingly common, disrupting businesses, schools, and homes. Even here in NJ I have noticed more brown outs and minor power outages than we have experienced in the last 5+ years. This, in turn, leads to further economic instability and disruption to daily life, especially when many of us continue to work from home. I often say, if everyone in our neighborhood decided to buy an electric car, we’d blow out the transformers because our grid is so aged and fragile. We’d black out the entire neighborhood for at least a week.
Lack of Trust in Government
I know, I know, I try not to be political. I’ve avoided it forever. It is even in our terms here. That said, I believe the fourth sign of a declining modern society is the lack of trust in government. From the United States to the Middle East, many people are losing faith in their governments due to corruption and mismanagement. This lack of trust is further compounded by the increasing number of authoritarian regimes, which are clamping down on dissent and suppressing democracy, as mentioned earlier in this post.
The lack of trust in government is also reflected in the increasing number of protest movements around the world. From Hong Kong to Chile, people have taken to the streets to demand change from their governments, sometimes not so successfully. This, in turn, leads to further divisions in a society and a further breakdown of social norms, which creates more stress.
Another lack of trust in government is also reflected in the increasing number of cyberattacks countries and large institutions are experiencing. Wars will be partially fought with zero’s and one’s going forward. Cyberattacks, in my humble opinion, are one of the largest infrastructure threats we face going forward. Imagine a cyberattack shutting off the power grid, water, or natural gas flow to your home, and for days or weeks the institution or government delivering these services cannot figure out how to defeat the hackers. From ransomware attacks to data breaches, cybercriminals are taking advantage of the lack of trust in government to target individuals and businesses. This, in turn, leads to further economic instability and disruption to daily life.
Growing Divides Between Social Classes
The fifth sign of a declining modern society I can identify is the growing divides between social classes, as mentioned above. From the rich to the poor, the gap between the haves and have-nots is growing ever wider. Home prices are still inflated, the average SUV is $40,000 — $75,000 depending on the appointments you are looking for, food prices are up, and people are making decisions to hold onto what they have or eat less, or lower quality less expensive foods. This is due to a number of factors, including the increasing cost of living, the lack of access to resources, and the growing income inequality. Grant Cardone (if you follow him) once said, that the “single digit millionaire is now the middle class.” I believe it. While I am not bitching, living in New Jersey is expensive, and it’s all relative to how much money you make. My parents are retired and have an exponentially lower income than I have, and they work to manage every penny. And I mean EVERY PENNY. That mindset (and this is another blog post altogether) is part of a mindset that both helps and hinders prosperity and increases the divide.
The growing divide between social classes is further compounded by the increasing number of people living in poverty (based on the poverty level scale). There are many people who make really good money with large families that eat that income up the day the paycheck is cut, making the relative savings divide huge by comparison their neighbor that may make a similar income with fewer family members. In many parts of the world, poverty is rampant, and unavoidable based on ones geography with millions of people living without access to basic necessities such as food, water, and shelter. This, in turn, leads to further economic instability and further divisions in society. I could go on about how instead of investing in green technologies here at home, employing solar in a 3rd world country to create electricity, move water, provide light, heat, and other amenities may ultimately be more important than worrying about it in second and first world country. Lifting those out of poverty with today’s advanced infrastructure technologies should be a priority. Not the infrastructure off the cost of NJ killing the whales and dolphins washing up on shore every week…
Increase in Pandemics and Disease
The sixth sign of a declining modern society is the increasing number of pandemics and diseases. From the current pandemic (err… epidemic) to the Zika virus, diseases are becoming increasingly common around the world, both man made and naturally occurring. This is due to a combination of factors, including the breakdown of public health systems, the lack of access to healthcare, the increasing number of people living in poverty, wider spread fast transportation, etc.
The increasing number of pandemics and diseases is further compounded by the rising number of antibiotic-resistant bacteria, since we’ve been using antibiotics where we can in many different facets of life. They are used for infections in humans, cattle, poultry, etc. These stronger, more resistant bacteria are becoming increasingly common, leading to the spread of deadly diseases that are difficult to treat quickly. This, in turn, leads to further economic instability and disruption to daily life.
This is also reflected in the growing number of food-borne illnesses. From E. coli to salmonella, food-borne illnesses are becoming increasingly common, leading to illness and death in many parts of the world. This, in turn, leads to further economic instability and disruption to daily life. The question becomes, did 36 million chickens really have to die? I could put on my tin foil hat for a moment, and start speculating (beef prices, poultry prices, etc.) but I suspect we’re already on the same page. So I will leave it at that.
Wait a minute, stop yelling at your computer screen. I’m not a tree hugging greeny. I promise.
However, the seventh sign of a declining modern society is the increasing environmental degradation. I believe, as humans we have “some” impact on the environment. China, the worlds worst polluter of air quality, does not seem to be slowing down. They are building more coal mines than any other country in the world. From the destruction of the Amazon rainforest to the melting of the polar ice caps (this is my Al Gore impersonation), the environment is in a state of crisis depending on who you ask.
The increasing belief in global warming (I am of the opinion the climate has been changing on its own for millions of years, or wait, is that a fact?) and environmental degradation is further compounded by the increasing number of extreme weather events. And if we’re talking weather events, I wonder how the hydrochloric acid that was released into the atmosphere by the burning liquid in East Palestine, OH will affect everything? No environmentalists have even commented on that yet. This and more events like this, are what to me will affect the environment… Not to mention the Nukes that the Russians keep threatening to use… This to me is the environmental degradation we really need to be concerned with, especially in the short term.
Imagine for a moment WW III with tactical nuclear weapons used by the superpowers. Now imagine how the Jetstream carries particles of nuclear radiation and fallout globally because the superpowers think it might be okay to have extended use of tactical nuclear weapons for a prolonged period of time. No Bueno IMHO….
Technology Taking Over Daily Life
Go outside and play with your friends. Get outside, it’s a nice day. Go play in the woods… These are all things I used to hear as a child, and are some of my fondest memories. No iPhones, no Internet. Hell extended communications was your mother calling outside at dusk because dinner was ready, and you heard her from a quarter mile away… Which brings me to the eighth sign of a declining modern society. And it is the increasing prevalence of technology in our daily life. From smartphones to virtual reality, technology has become ubiquitous in our lives (first and second world problems again). This is due to a combination of factors, including the increasing affordability of technology and the increasing number of tech companies that seem to pop up overnight with some new application that helps you be more productive, save time, waste time, and become more depending on the device you are using. I mean, this isn’t being typed on a typewriter for a newspaper. It’s on a laptop with MS Word, and going to be posted on the Internet… The very thing that is helping to kill our society as well as enable it…
The increasing prevalence of technology in daily life is further compounded by the increasing number of digital services. From online banking (essentially a requirement today) to streaming services (YouTube, Vimeo, Rumble), to Connected TV, which is essentially dropping cable TV and using an Amazon Firestick or Roku device. You’re utilizing the Internet. Digital services are becoming increasingly commonplace (Amazon Alexa, smart TV’s, Smart Watches, Etc)., leading to a further breakdown of traditional models of communication. This, in turn, leads to further economic instability and disruption to daily life. Imagine the Internet going down on your 6‑Year-old and they cannot get to YouTube Kids? Holy $#!&, there would be a meltdown.
The increasing prevalence of technology in daily life is also reflected in the growing number of cyberattacks. From ransomware attacks to data breaches, cybercriminals are taking advantage of the increasing prevalence of technology to target individuals and businesses. This, in turn, leads to further economic instability and disruption to daily life.
Fear of the Future
I am pretty sure the ninth sign of a declining modern society is the fear of the future. It’s one of my favorite topics. We’re preppers. We prep because we have a fear of the future for lack of better vernacular. We watch what is happening, speculate, and prep and hope for longevity in the event of the zombie apocalypse. People around the world are becoming increasingly fearful of the future. This is due to a combination of factors, including the increasing number of disasters and the breakdown of social norms, and the decisions the elected officials are making on behalf of their constituents. Sometimes I think common sense has just damn gone out the window.
From Russia to China, authoritarian regimes have gained momentum and power and are clamping down on the reach for individualism, sovereignty, and freedom. This, in turn, leads to further divisions in society and a further breakdown of social norms as people make decisions on how they need to live.
The fear of the future is also reflected in the increasing number of people living with lower financial means. They worry about how to feed their family, keep a roof over their heads, and keep them safe. I fear for the future of my daughter in the economic and political climate we are living in.
Hope for the Future – What Can Be Done?
Despite all the signs of a declining modern society, there is still hope for the future, I think. From the renewable energy farse to the false global cooperation (great reset) concept, there are a few solutions that can be implemented to ensure that our future is one of hope, not of dread.
The first solution is to invest in people that understand people, their beliefs, their desires, and to help lift them out of the chains they feel they are held down by. By investing in people, we can reduce our dependence handouts that chain us to the ground. Give them the ability to build their own futures, and I believe people will rise to the occasion. I may be wrong, and I am sure I am wrong about a cross section of the domestic and global population, but I believe the majority of people will dig ditches if they want to dig ditches for a living, and get paid for it.
The second solution is to invest in infrastructure. By investing in roads, bridges, utility, and other infrastructure projects, we can create jobs and bolster the economy. Where is the money going to come from? Good question. The government is spending like drunken sailors, especially in the Ukraine at the moment. I don’t have all the answers, but believe in the reduced size of government, and let the private sector sort it out. If the private sector could work with local and state governments, coordinate appropriately, I believe we would have a stronger infrastructure.
The third solution is to invest in health and wellness. Not public healthcare. Not universal healthcare. A person’s health is their own responsibility. I believed that 30 years ago, and I believe that today. I don’t expect two new hips paid for by the government (really the public) because of my arthritis. I expect to pay for that myself, at some juncture. I’m not talking pandemics, epidemics, etc. I am talking personal health in good times and bad. You have a compromised immune system, take appropriate care. You have diabetes that can be altered with diet, change your diet.
The fourth solution is to invest in education. By investing in quality education, we can ensure that everyone has access to the resources and skills they need to succeed in life. Not this equity stuff. This could be the 10th sign of a declining modern society. Today’s educational platform in public schools is concerning at the very least. The best you can do is question what your children are being taught and help to realign them in the right direction with your own words of wisdom. The indoctrinators have figured out how to get new recruits via young impressionable individuals and plug them into their collective. Our children are individuals and need to be taught such, as well as history, and how to avoid repeating it in the future.
These signs in our declining modern society are unmistakable. We are on the downslide… Our society peaked years ago, and now we’re sliding slowly in decline. From economic instability to social unrest, the world is quickly unraveling around us, and to a 6‑year-old, it all appears “normal” since they’ve never known anything different. We need to teach them to be different. To be better. To be like Reagan, in my humble opinion. It is time for us to act and ensure that our future is one of hope, not of dread. we can ensure that our future is one of hope, not of dread. Continue prepping. Continue staying prepared. Continue learning, and continue to be who you are. Dare I say get involved in local politics, school boards, etc. It is how the difference is made at the grass roots level. At least this is what I am seeing. Will it be a fight? Will it be stressful? I am sure it will be. I leave you with this, and as they say, “All that is needed for the forces of evil to triumph is for enough good men and women to do nothing.” If society is going to fall, let it fall with us trying to make it better.