Crying wolf over looming economic and climate crises: The US Need Not Inevitably Descend into Violent Chaos If and When Disaster Strikes

By Dave Lindorff

Camden, NJ workers organize and march for jobs in the Great Depression

            Liberal opponents of serious, aggressive action on climate change like California Governor Jerry Brown are the strange bedfellows of right-wing survivalists on one thing:  Both are quick to warn darkly that if environmentalists have their way and imposestrict cuts on oil, gas and coal production or on mileage standards for automobiles and pollution controls on power plants, or in the case of right-wingers, if the banking system is allowed to continue to run US economic policy and the Fed isn’t audited, the irate citizens of the US will descend into an orgy of anarchic violence and mayhem.

            The argument is that if Americans are told they can no longer drive gas-guzzling automobiles and blast their air conditioners at will, or if the US financial system again collapses as it did in 2008 leading to the Great Recession, the people of this country will essentially go mad and a lawless chaos of dog-eat-dog, kill thy neighbor for his food, will ensue.

            “It will be like the Great Depression all over,” I read in one account of a recent report by one JP Morgan Chase analyst who is predicting a dramatic market crash of over 40% followed by armageddon.  (I learned about this little report of impending disaster from a former cop friend who advised me to get a gun and plenty of ammo and to stock up on food to be able to protect my family.)

            But this is truly ignorance regarding what actually happened when everything did collapse back in the Great Depression and Dust Bowl.

            It’s true that a few despondent investors did leap from windows of tall buildings in lower Manhattan after the 1929 stock market collapse, but not all that many, and things continued fairly calmly after that as the economy began to seize up. After all, very few Americans were actually invested in the market. But even as the lay-offs, bank collapses, bankruptcies and home foreclosures began to mount, there was no revolution in the US.

            My own father, then just a young kid, recalls his family losing their home in Flushing, NY as his father, a carpet jobber, lost so many customers he had to give it up, unable to make the mortgage payments. He didn’t pick up a gun and go on a rampage, or join others in his situation and storm Washington. He just started looking for odd jobs to support his wife and two kids, and voted for Franklin D. Roosevelt in the next presidential election in 1932 and the other three after that…

            For the rest of this article by DAVE LINDORFF in ThisCantBeHappening!, the uncompromised, collectively run, six-time Project Censored Award-winning online alternative news site, please go to: www.thiscantbehappening.net/node/3971

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