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At that point the two choices become a steady state economy, with no more delusions of growth until the next technological revolution (biotech? space? good luck selling those here...), or outright violent revolution because there's nowhere else to go, economically or politically.
is that really going to be the only binary left?
i think people are going to succumb to the series of shocks and revert to better - and worse - behaviour patterns, better in the sense of more frugal (g'bye consumerism! heave-ho planned obsolescence), more co-operative, more solidarity, more bottom-up, lateral thinking, mycelial information sharing, ready to roll up sleeves and git to work, and for worse, those who lust for chaos as solution to the feeling that the system has always been loaded against them, and have given up hope of any joy in life save that of destruction.
these obviously have to be quarantined off until they see the error of their thinking...
it is in few peoples' interests to have mass panic and mayhem, and i think the conviviality long suppressed under the pressure of modern life will re-assert itself, as it does in most simpler societies quite naturally.
there might be be a period of bottleneck where extreme disorder may be legion, but i think most people will be too concerned about protecting their families (or too weak from hunger) to be getting too in the government's face by way of violent protest.
i expect sit-ins, ghandi style, people crowding together into giant fleshblobs to peacefully signal they've had enough, blocking traffic and thoroughfares, not as martyrs or heroes, just citizens who've all suffered one turn of the screw too many, exhausted and out of ideas.
there needn't be a drop of blood spilled, if the conviction and numbers are there. there is no national guard or equivalent which can coerce a whole failed middle class into disappearing, all that will be needed is to shame these leaders, so they come to us, stripping themselves of privilege just as obama has done with his salary cap.
he's smart, being proactive...
'The history of public debt is full of irony. It rarely follows our ideas of order and justice.' Thomas Piketty
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