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Payback periods and mindsets............

Post in 'The Boiler Room - Wood Boilers and Furnaces' started by BoilerMan, May 27, 2013.

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  1. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    Norwegian, I have thought much about the not only the US economy but also the macro economic conditions world wide since the beginning of the run-up back in 2003-2004.
    To say we were busy during those years would be an understatement but even while it was going on red flags were popping up in my head. What I was seeing all those new houses and McMansions sell for and knowing the financial condition of many of the people who bought them just made me wonder what in the world was going on.
    Young families with practically zero credit history getting 100% loans for houses that were in the $300K range just didn't add up. Especially when I knew their household income was maybe around $40K in a good year.
    You could just see it was a house of cards waiting for the right economic wind to blow it all down. Where was all the money to finance those homes coming from? How did the owners ever expect to pay off their house? In hindsight we can all see it was nearly criminal level activity by the banks, absolutely ludicrous mortgage and finance laws being passed by our lawmakers and a total failure of basic math on the part of the buyers.
    The basic assumption was that housing and other property values would go up continually and everyone would make money. Unfortunately as you have pointed out, history tells a different tale. Nothing goes up forever, nothing continually expands without destroying what it is founded on. In fact, the only thing that grows continually once started is commonly called cancer.

    But these are all things that we know and some of us fell victim to. I got taken to the cleaners in 2007 for over $50K when the GC/builder of a $1.4 million "spec" home went belly up. Still recovering from that.............

    The question in my mind is how the current economic experiment will ever be resolved. Again, as you have pointed out, history tells us that endless money printing and devaluation of fiat currency always ends in disaster. Many lawmakers and our own Federal Reserve seem to think they can manage things in a way that, to quote one economic writer, "This time is different".
    I don't see how it can end any differently than it has in the past.
    I suppose it would just be conjecture but how do you see things "ending"? A gradual unwind over what will seriously take decades or an Armageddon event?
    BoilerMan likes this.

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  2. dogwood

    dogwood Minister of Fire

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    You know Karl, I agree with you 100% as well. I wonder what will happen when the oil does run out, and some of the effects of the planet warming start hitting us harder here in North America, and what might happen if global warming precipitates an ice age. I was listening on PBS to a panel of scientists talk about the current effects of global warming. I was struck by one scientist from Banglaesh describing the dramatic shift in climate there. If I remember correctly, he said there has been a twelvefold inrease in flooding there over the past ten-twenty years or so. I know there are seas and large bodies of water drying up in Asia and North Africa. On a local level I've seen flowers in the median strip of I-81 blooming here in Virginia around Christmas time.

    I have no idea if the weather and seemingly increasingly severe storms and tornadoes here over the past few years are caused by the planet warming, but distinctly remember hearing ten years or so ago on a PBS show about climate change where that exact forecast was made. Another scientist I was listening to on the news said the ice pack is melting so quickly now that the climatic processes set into motion are irreversable at this point.

    When I was a kid I remember learning in school that my birthplace, New York City, was the third biggest city in the world with a population of eight million. Now there are some 20 million people in that same place, seven cities in the world bigger than that, and thirty-seven cities now with over eight million people. When you add all this up we are in some deep you now what. I just hope it doesn't take something catastrophic to straighten this mess out, but nature does have its ways.

    Mike
  3. Frozen Canuck

    Frozen Canuck Minister of Fire

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    [quote="heaterman
    I suppose it would just be conjecture but how do you see things "ending"? A gradual unwind over what will seriously take decades or an Armageddon event?[/quote]

    With the runup in population & the increase in total consumption with that runup. Very badly indeed.

    One thing we have to admit, though we may live in a democracy we really dont control much at all, corporations control most governments worldwide regardless of structure of said govt. Corporations serve one thing in the last 40 or so years = shareholder value = more money = growth at any cost.

    Given this insatiable need for growth & the money that comes with it well basically we are going to drive the horses right over the cliff. Wont be a slowdown, will be large corporations eating small ones as the opportunity for real growth disappears. When real world limits are imposed on growth that will be the only avenue available to them for growth = consume those around you.

    Basically the old chinese saying of the snake eating its tail will happen. Not too sure what happened to the snake but I am willing to bet it wasn't good. Maybe choking to death on ones own waste would be a more apt analogy.

    One thing I have absolute faith in is human nature = greed. We have been killing each other for the other guys stuff since we began. If you think you can stop big oil think again, when we choke on the air & cant drink the water they will still be chugging along as long as someone somewhere is willing to pay them the going rate & yes I live very near to the oilsands I guarantee they wont stop until the oil or buyers for the oil are gone.

    Honestly at the rate we are going I dont see how we make it past 9 billion without some serious poop hitting the fan. Cant remember his name but one american general (I think) when asked what he saw as the greatest threat to american security answered "climate change", he was right after all what does any nation do with 500 million climate refugees? Or more!

    No point in prepping, if you are one of the <2% that can sustain themselves it just means that you are going to be hunted by the other 98% because guess what.....they want your stuff. Better to move to the third world where they are more likely to share what they have & expect the same of you.
  4. jebatty

    jebatty Minister of Fire

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    I think I can safely say that I agree with the general thrust of this thread, which I understand to mean that the human race is on a collision course with Nature, that one major element of that course is population growth, and another is insatiable human greed. I would venture to say that every contributor to this discussion who has identified these or other elements of human's race to disaster, and (like me) believes that in ways big or small he or she is doing something(s) that are more sustainable and less destructive than others, that person still is consuming resources at a rate that is massively unsustainable for the current world's population, let alone there be sufficient resources for the growth in that population.

    Those of us with religious belief systems, regardless of which of the world's religions we subscribe to, are no better at sustainable use of resources than those without religious belief systems, and no worse. Hope in an afterlife works for the very poor and uneducated (unknowing), because they have nothing else to hope for or don't know better and are just struggling to survive. But for others, the "haves or knowing," regardless of how much they have, that hope is either a ticket to enjoy and exploit the ride, because there is an afterlife, or it is a hope that the answer to the question "what did you do for the least of these" is never asked, or that Grace will excuse their endless murder of starving humans and destruction of Creation on earth while those excused wine and dine away their earthly existence.

    For me the weird thing about this is that the afterlife is mostly a picture of humans or the human spirit in community and harmony with each other and all of Creation, including the Creator being, that is, a picture of perfection. And at the same time humans engage in an intentional and knowing course of action with the result of destroying Creation. This likely is a conundrum.

    One thing is pretty certain for me, and that is that a system, and life on earth is a system, always seeks balance and will sustain balance, until something upsets that balance, at which time the system becomes chaotic until it reorganizes and achieves a new balance. Whether life as we know it, and humans themselves, will be part of some future balance is an open question. Perhaps we or our successors will never need to answer that question, as it will be answered for us by an asteroid or large meteor striking the earth and ending everything, at least so far as humans are concerned.

    The cockroach neither ponders about the question or cares about the answer, as is true about most of non-human creation. The cockroach simply "is" or "is not," unconscious of its existence. The cockroach now lives in perfect harmony with its Creator and all of creation. It is in a state of perfection.
  5. Norwegian Wood

    Norwegian Wood New Member

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    Interesting that you say "economic experiment", because that's exactly what it is. This fiat currency is a 41 year experiment that has gone terribly wrong, just as anyone who understands what "money' really is has predicted.
    You are also correct that it ALWAYS ends in disaster.
    There is no possible gradual unwinding. There are several possible end games.

    An outright default by the US on its debt is one possibility, but not very likely because of the immediate consequences.
    It would be best if we just declared bankruptcy & paid pennies on the dollar, reverting to the sound money of a gold & silver backed currency, but that is not going to happen either.
    You need to understand that the bankers & politicians are sociopaths, and will not stop until they have taken everything.
    For proof of this, just look at the concentration of wealth in the hands of the top fraction of 1% of the population, and the destruction of the middle class.
    The most likely ending will be a hyperinflation, as has happened 23 times since 1913, the year of the founding of the Federal Reserve.
    You do know that the Fed is a private company that charges us to print our money, don't you? It's owned by banks around the world. The biggest con ever perpetuated.
    They have been running a Ponzi scheme of borrowing to pay debts, and it will end like every Ponzi scheme ends.

    More than likely, the Chinese will move to become a reserve currency, perhaps by introducing a gold backed renmimbi. They have already accumulated 4,000 tons.
    We supposedly have 7,000 tons, but that is probably all gone.
    If they do that, and the Saudis stop taking dollars, we are done. The price of oil doesn't matter when we pay for it with ink & paper. It matters a lot when we have to buy another currency to get it.
    For those who say the Chinese can't do this, they have too much of our debt, they will simply exchange that debt for all the WalMart & Apple factories over there.

    When the dollar collapses & hyperinflation sets in, the flow of goods will stop. Truckers don't haul for a loss, or when there is no gas.
    The cities in the US have a three day supply of food.
    I'll let your imagination take over here.

    The government is very much aware of the consequences of the end game which is coming.
    That's why the unconstitutional DHS has bought 1.3 billion rounds of hollow point, 4600 armored humvees, and 2700 light tanks.

    Not worth prepping Frozen Canuck?
    Perhaps so, but better than living in a FEMA camp.
    skfire likes this.
  6. Floydian

    Floydian Feeling the Heat

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    Wow, lots of really good stuff in this thread!

    Jim, thank's for sharing your thoughts-very well put.

    Some of you all may find this interesting and relevant to the discussion. I really like some of this guys work.



    Noah
  7. skfire

    skfire Feeling the Heat

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    Petrodollar
    Back line economic data justification of historical conflicts under false pretenses(as always in history)

    Norwegian wood is right on.

    "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."
    Arthur Schopenhauer.

    Problem is we have been conditioned as citizens, ergo as a society, to accept without critical thinking and analysis, through decades of engineered dumbing down via media & "education" practices.

    The end stage where truth becomes self evident is historically the ugly end phase and where people find themselves helpless and in danger of enslavement or elimination.

    Founding fathers knew well and practiced this principle by framing this republic..not a democracy, but a Republic.
    So currently we continually allow these rights bestowed to us by the Fathers, to be decimated and in turn we do become pawn/drone like, absent of critical thinking and analysis and live life as dictated by an elite minority.

    This conversation is way off boilers...but time times dictate the subject.


    SK
  8. Norwegian Wood

    Norwegian Wood New Member

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    Great video & good website, skfire.
    Here's some more food for thought.
    In the year of 2000 there were seven countries without a Rothschild owned Central Bank, which were, Afghanistan, Iraq, Sudan, Libya, Cuba, North Korea and Iran.

    In 2003, Sudan, Libya, Cuba, North Korea and Iran remained as the last countries on Earth not controlled by the Red Shield banks.

    Today, only Cuba, North Korea and Iran have central banks that are not Red Shield banks.

    Does anyone see a pattern here?
  9. BoilerMan

    BoilerMan Minister of Fire

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    Wow, I never thought this thread would go in this direction........Great discussion here guys, I'm still working on getting caught up from yesturday.

    TS
  10. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    Im not a doomsday prepper but i like to be prepared for the future. When TSHTF there will be those who have prepared and those who wish they would have. I like having the ability to heat,and cook and provide some light WITHOUT electricity. Most people DONT have generators so they will suffer economic loss and miserable living conditions if the power goes out for an extended period.
    BoilerMan likes this.
  11. heaterman

    heaterman Minister of Fire

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    I really wonder how long any of us would last. You can do all you want to as far as generators, gas lights, chain saws etc etc but if you can't buy fuel and electrical energy we are back to the 1820's. Survival in that kind of world is a skill set that is gone and only a few would be able to survive long enough to re-learn it.

    In my previous post I mentioned Armageddon and I meant that in a financial sense not spiritual. I think that is a more likely outcome at this point.

    And yes.....this thread has definitely taken a stream of consciousness detour. A very interesting one that really makes you think.
  12. Kemer

    Kemer Member

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  13. Karl_northwind

    Karl_northwind Member

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    seriously, knowlege of germ theory put us above the 1820's. Not that most folks really know how to apply that to their daily lives beyond washing their hands with purel (which thanks to evolution, has brewed stronger and more resilient bugs)

    I've been a low grade prepper since reading "alas Babylon" in high school. It's the story of a '50s small town in central florida during and after a nuclear war, before anyone thought of the term "nuclear Winter" All out nuclear war isn't the risk it once was, but reading that book really made me think about where everything I had came from, and alerted me to things like resource depletion, pollution, and other things that are a daily concern, although not a real existential risk to humankind. It should be a required read for all highschoolers.

    most of my resources are in my head.
  14. Norwegian Wood

    Norwegian Wood New Member

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    heaterman, I don't think society will be knocked back to the 1820's. Us humans are a resilient race, and I believe there will certainly be a rebound from economic collapse. I believe you only need a year or so of preps.
    Look what has happened in the past when societies have collapsed. The people adapt & live on. In most cases the rebuilt society is far better than the one that came before.
    I think this thread has gotten so much traction because people that heat with wood are obviously of the rugged, adaptable, survivalist mind.
    That put us ahead of 99% of the population.

    Meanwhile, on boiler type stuff, I have a thread called "My energy independence project", and would welcome comment from you good people here.
    BoilerMan likes this.
  15. willyswagon

    willyswagon Burning Hunk

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    I never worry about the problems of the world, or futures prices when making the decisions on ROI. I simply go back to a couple of phrases an old fisherman I knew used to use.

    #1 "Every day you are working you are not spending."

    He said idle time leads to thoughts of wants, not of needs.
    So every minute I'm blocking, splitting and tending to the fire I'm not thinking of any other need other than Heat for my family.

    #2" Everything you do should make you money, or save you money."

    He said buy the cheapest rig you can to get your self to work. That saves you money and allows you to make money.

    When I asked him about the speed boat that he used for water skiing with his kids, he said it made him money because he would take the kids out and they all would fish for mackerel which he use as bait for lobsters.
    When I asked him about the fuel he used water skiing, he said it was subsidized by the savings on the bait bill, and it saved him money because if you don't do some things that your wife and children enjoy you are going to end up giving it all to Divorce Lawyers in the end!!

    As far as ROI I used present day pricing for Oil present day price for wood, used the above life lessons, came up with 5.2 yrs and ran to the dealer.
    The house has never been warmer than it was last winter.
    salecker and hobbyheater like this.
  16. BoilerMan

    BoilerMan Minister of Fire

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    I just read this whole thread again. WOW, some great thinking in here. I've been talking about this to many of my friends and fellow burners.

    TS
  17. Norwegian Wood

    Norwegian Wood New Member

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    Everyone needs to talk to everyone they know.
    Only by being aware can we hope to stop them.
    It comes as no surprise to me at all that they have been eavesdropping on us for years.
    George Orwell was right.
    Skfire's link to stormchasers is a great place to stay on top of whats going on.
  18. BrotherBart

    BrotherBart Hearth.com LLC Mid-Atlantic Division Staff Member

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    This one is headed to the Ash Can real fast.
    Chris Hoskin likes this.
  19. Norwegian Wood

    Norwegian Wood New Member

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    Yeah.
    Nothing to see here folks.
    Move along.
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