Survivalist or Survivor? Your choice...
The chief characteristics to personal stability are self-reliance and being prepared.
It seems to me that what many predicted is coming to pass and whether or not it's a "Double Dip" or a "long term slowdown in recovery" is mere semantics. What I think will really cause a collapse of the system is that the political and bureaucratic classes in DC - the Federal Reserve, the Administration and Congress - are playing with fire by making a game out of the debt ceiling, budget, quantitative easing and more. It is unnecessary roughness that serves only one real unintended purpose on their part and that is their own ultimate demise.
My belief is that is where we are heading. A economic crash and system collapse that is unlike any others in the past since we are in an entirely new era. Prior to the 1930s Recessions and Depressions were called Panics. Only history written down the road will name what we are going through but to my way of thinking the best I've heard is Disruption. We are indeed in a Great Disruption of the world as we knew it the past 100 years, since post-WWI, a turning point in history as big as the Reformation, Age of Enlightenment and American Revolution.
I believe America is going to be divided up regionally and not necessarily by contiguous geography but certainly confined to a certain extent by it, into segments of society who survive (and some will thrive) by taking responsibility for their own physical and mental health and working to maintain it. The amount of money, gold or supplies you have may or may not help you but your preparation, planning and wits will. Many of the survivalist camp think their moving off to the woods or for those who stay in towns and cities, growing your own and stockpiling will get them by. I understand that thinking and I do think that now is the time to preserve what you can, store as much as feasible and think of alternate ways to obtain goods in the future other than paper money. Therein lies material for an entire other blog that I'm still contemplating.
What is clear is that economically, therefore politically and socially, things are not improving and we are not "recovering." That is due to the fact that our recovery does not lie in restoring things the way they were and it's taking awhile to get that message through to the markets, people and institutions. This does not mean pending doom for everyone and there is no reason for gloom unless you are unprepared. I recognize some people are trapped in situations they feel they cannot get out of. My thought is "where there is a will there is a way" and it requires thinking through your situation to come up with the best possible solution.
No one promises that will be easy and it never has been in the history of America. Self reliance, mutual help, reinvention and rebuilding are inherent in the American character even if we seem to have lost that in the past 30-40 years. I have every faith it is still alive and well in this country and also in the inherent values of England and the British people.
Here is my video blog of a few weeks ago when the markets were still relatively stable, economic indicator reports had not come out and the debt situation in Europe and the US had not risen to the forefront again. I stand by what I said then.