The Great Reset: Economic Reset, part 1

The following is part of a book review series about The Great Reset by Klaus Schwab and Thierry Mallerett.

“Must the economy die so that it could be resurrected in robust good health? Yes.” This is from page 38 of The Great Reset by Klaus Schwab and Thierry Mallerett. This is a Quote from Simon Schama describing what was done during previous pandemics, but it is used as an argument for the reaction by Governments around the globe. There are arguments made on both sides of the fence for lockdowns or keeping economies open and I have to say that the arguments for lockdowns are poor overall.

On page 44 we read “Once people began to worry about the pandemic, they effectively started to shut down the economy, even before the government had officially asked them to do so.” Anyone who was paying attention for the last year knows this didn’t happen. I, personally, went out and stocked up on food and supplies not knowing what was going to happen over the coming weeks. The shelves in supermarkets were bare. People could not buy toilet paper on-line. Stores closed their doors and we thought that everyone was going to die. I knew it was better to spend the money I had on something I knew I would need in the future rather than save it for when things reopened. Since then, people have started saving money, not because of the lockdown but not knowing if they are going to lose their employment because of government policies, not the virus. At the time of the initial lockdown the average American had less than $1000 in savings and could not afford a $500 expense if it came their way. The only time Americans saved money was when the stores were closed due to lockdowns and that was only if they were the people who could work from home and keep a paycheck coming in. Even then, sales on Amazon and other on-line outlets skyrockets to Christmas sales numbers funneling money away from small businesses and straight to major corporations. This argument on human reaction regarding the fear of the virus is false.

Regarding lockdowns. On page 45 we see a line “when you do it right, nothing happens.” As we know now, nobody did it right. The states with the most sever lockdown orders had the largest spikes in cases and death. New York, Michigan, and Washington state shut down major parts of their economy but continued certain operations for the sake of tax revenue. You could not go to church, but you could go to the lock liquor store and buy a bottle of gin with a pack of smokes. You could go to Lowe’s and buy lumber, but you weren’t allowed to buy house paint or flooring. With our current culture the ability to do an appropriate lockdown was impossible. Most homes do not have enough food to feed the occupants for more than a week. Savings are non-existent and even if people had the money to buy food for several weeks the local grocery store is designed to have food for the public it serves for a week at a time. A proper lockdown was never feasible, the virus was never going away.

When referring to returning to normal the book quotes leading experts on the subject “It is likely to be before the first quarter of 2021 at the earliest.” As of 2-7-2021 the US economy isn’t close to recovering with people in the service industry still unemployed, thousands of small businesses closed permanently due to the mismanagement of the pandemic, and a failed roll out of a vaccine by the Biden administration. Under president trump there were 200,000 more vaccines given per month than the current administration who came into system already in process and more companies producing the vaccine than before.

The fear for the economy now is that with people saving money, American households have 33% more savings than before the pandemic and in the EU its 19% higher, they will not spend it once the economy is fully open hindering the growth back to normal. It’s not the virus that caused these people to hold on to their money, its fear of paying their bills when the government decides they are not essential and can no longer work. In the US we received two checks during the entire span of the pandemic. Neither would be enough to pay the bills that piled up while someone was out of work for forced to shut down. Small business loans were only for paying employees to keep them on the payroll and prevent them from collecting unemployment. Many businesses shut down knowing that their employees would collect more while on unemployment and the loan did not help the cost of keeping the business afloat like paying the owner, rent, power and water bills, property taxes, resources, or any loans that might be outstanding. Small businesses overall had no help from the federal government. During the last month, with businesses still shut down and people still unemployed, state governments are starting to demand payments back from people originally deemed qualifying for unemployment benefits due to Covid-19. Whatever saving these people might have will be eaten by a bureaucratic system that is looking to cut its losses while mishandling a situation making it more painful for the public.

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From the Cabin

2-7-2021 Vol 1 Issue 9

Politics: Hunter Biden released a book this month called Beautiful Things. It immediately hit #1 in sales in the Chinese market. Meanwhile the reports of Hunter receiving a “foot job” by his niece in the notorious laptop videos has been proven false. It turns out that while she may have resembled his niece, she was in fact just a prostitute.

A New York times article “The Secret History of the Shadow Campaign that Saved the 2020 Election” was published on Feb 4th detailing the cabal of political elites and corporations that worked together to make sure Biden won the election.

Economics: While most countries reported a loss of GDP growth in 2020, China still reported a gain at the end of the year.

The US economy struggles to recover with more jobs being lost in the service industry. In the UK the economy appears to be recovering at a fast rate with the roll out of the vaccine. State and federal governments are now pursuing Covid fraudsters who received unemployment and Covid loans during the pandemic. The UK government is investigating small businesses who took loans before closing their doors. In Michigan, the state is now demanding payments of unemployment back from people who were unemployed due to government shutdowns.

Gold: $1,815.2 troy ounce

Silver: $27.03 troy ounce

Platinum: $1,137.8 troy ounce

Copper: $3.64 pound

Bitcoin: $37,838.10

US National Debt: $27,883,028,000,000

Debt per citizen: $84,197

Food: World food prices have climbed to a six-year high. According to the UN cereals, vegetable oils and sugar have climbed 4.3% since December of 2020 reaching prices not seen since 2014. Cereal prices have risen 7.1% monthly mostly due to a lack of north American corn. Maize is now up 11.2% and is 42.3% higher than the January 2020 level.

Wheat is expected to level out in price when Russia’s exports double in March flooding the market. Vegetable oil is expected to rise from the lack of soy produced in 2020 and in the southern hemisphere.

Self-defense: The purge continues as an NYPD police officer is under disiplinary action for wearing “Trump related” badges on a tactical vest. One badge was the Punisher skull with trump hair on top, the second said “make enforcement great again” with an outline of Trump’s head. The NYPD said they are investigating white supremacy in their organization. NYPD policy states that officers are not allowed to wear political paraphernalia while on duty. This rule appears to not apply when ordered to protect political signs and banners such as the BLM murals in NYC.

Country music star Morgan Wallen is being cancelled for partying during a night out with his friends. A few months back Morgan was cancelled as the musical guest on SNL after there were photos of him found posing in selfies and kissing random women at a bar. His performance was cancelled and Jack White replaced him for the appearance. Currently Morgan Wallen is #1 on the country music charts and in the Billboard top 100. After a long night of drinking, Morgan and his friends pulled up to Morgan’s Nashville home. Morgan stumbled to his house before turning around and telling his friends to “take care of that n-word” referring to one of his friends in the group. The friends replied “we’ll take care of this n-word” and Morgan when into the house. The context of the word is obviously in a friendly manner but the n-word was used and Morgan is not black. Since the video has been released, by the neighbors of Morgan, his record deal has been cancelled, his appearance at the CMA is cancelled, and all endorsements have been cancelled.

Editorial: The purge is alive a well in the United States, or should I say Un-United States? People are losing their jobs because of their political ideas, media outlets debate the justification for using drone strikes on US citizens on US soil, Trump voters are compared to Al Qaeda, and Bank of America bypassed the 4th amendment by handing over information to the FBI on customers who might have been at the Trump rally on Jan 6th. Maybe the Purge isn’t the best analogy of what is happening. If you happen to be a libertarian The Hunt might be more applicable. Keep in mind that even Libertarians are on the Dem chopping block since they don’t agree with the Woke philosophy of identity politics now running rampant in the country. If we have learned anything from 2020 its do not underestimate how crazy things can get. HR 127 continues to come back into the news and most people assume that it will never pass. Have we already forgotten Kamala Harris’s famous quote? “I think we could do this through Executive order” during the first Democratic debate. As for the use of deadly force against US citizens, it wasn’t that long ago that a man named Christopher Dorner was being hunted by the LAPD after killing the daughter of the chief of police, allegedly. There was no trial. The investigation was limited to what the media reported at the time. The last post Dorner put on his Facebook page had been tampered with, content added in the last half to make him appear crazy. He was an LAPD officer, former military, war veteran, impeccable record and his career was ruined for turning in a training officer for abusing a suspect in her custody. What he didn’t know was that the female officer he turned in had an affair with the chief of police while they were partners on patrol years before. His career was ruined and left unemployed. During the manhunt for Dorner there were rumors that the Obama administration had authorized the use of drones to help in the manhunt and possibly take the suspect “out.” This was denied later. Like Waco, the cabin Dorner was in was set on fire and he burned alive. He was unarmed, having dumped his firearms into a dumpster on camera while on the run. The weapons found in the remains of the cabin were display models that did not have any ammo available for them.

We have to assume that there is a good possibility that HR127 could be passed, the use of anti-terrorist tactics could be used on US citizens, and that the media and social media will be used to push public opinion on who is a villain and who is not. Too many times in our past the court was bypassed and the truth of a situation had not been revealed to cover the mistakes of the people in charge. In the past it could be said that the mistakes were made by educated people who made a poor decision. If there is one thing I know about SJWs is that they are not intelligent and they tend to made poor choices out of fear for no reason.

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Children of Men

Guy McPherson, climate change believer and doomsday enthusiast might be correct. For years, Guy has pushed the idea that even if we lower carbon emissions and stop polluting the earth will still heat up from the lack of reflecting particles in the air. In Guy’s opinion the concept of climate change is a damned if you do, damned if you don’t problem. Either way humanity is screwed.

This isn’t a popular opinion and not a message that people will pay attention to. Considering how the other fighters of climate change act in their role of saving the planet should we really be surprised? John Kerry flew a private jet to Iceland to accept an award for combating climate change. Leonardo DiCaprio not only flies himself all over the planet in the name of climate change but also which ever woman half his age he is currently indulging in. Al Gore owns several pieces of property, a personal jet, and his carbon footprint is larger than some cities. Add the fact that many of these millionaires and billionaires are investing in beach front property and that should tell you everything.

https://www.healio.com/news/primary-care/20210129/covid19-reduces-fertility-in-men-study-suggests

 A recent study found that men who were infected with Covid-19 have a lower fertility rate than normal. Over the decades, studies have found lowering levels of testosterone in men due to environmental circumstances. Estrogen in the water supply from birth control pills, diets with less meat and fat, soy products, plastics, and car exhaust are just a few of the causes. This study shows a drastic decrease in sperm count after being infected with Covid-19 and it is unknown how much this will affect fertility in the future. We could literally be looking at Children of Men in real life.

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The Great Reset: Macro Reset

The following is part of a series about the book Covid-19: The Great Reset written by Klaus Schwab and Thierry Malleret. Some things to consider for this book, since the book has two authors it is unknown what information was added by which author.

  1. Interdependence

This section of the book compares aspects of society to boats. Each country at one time used to be their own boat but through globalization they became cabins on the same boat. Because of this independent ideology it is difficult to grasp the big picture and countries need to react to things like Covid-19 as if we are all on the same boat instead of trying to regulate what happens in our own cabins. This section made me question the movement towards populism and a desire that is growing in countries like isolationism. After all, if these countries had isolated or regulated travel as they wanted to before the Covid-19 outbreak would they have been affected like the rest of the planet? At what point are nations allowed to no longer participate in a global market or will they be forced to play along whether they like it or not?

In keeping with the boat analogy could one of the solutions to Covid-19 be isolationism and making a country a lifeboat away from the rest of the sinking ship?

  1. Velocity

With reference to our fast-paced society the argument is made that we already accept change and at a faster pace than before. More of the world is connected through the internet and we expect things faster and more immediate. As things become faster, we equate this with the fast pace of Covid-19 moving through the world even though it follows the same pattern as a bacterium populating a petri dish. Just like the end of the dish being filled so will the new policies of the Great Reset. A quote from Hemingway is used about being broke. At first, it’s a little at a time then its all at once. This is how the policies will be rolled out. We are already seeing this with the barrage of executive orders being signed by the Biden administration and policy changes in Canada and the UK.

  1. Complexity

The system of our society is a complex system that used specialized professions to keep things working. Because of these specialized positions it is difficult to see how one change in mortgages will affect the jobs market or college enrollment. The argument is made that nobody saw the financial collapse of 2008 coming and this is a flat out lie. Michael Ruppert warned people about what was coming two years before the housing bubble burst. Members of wall street took out credit default swaps on the mortgage bonds before they crumbled due to rising numbers of default mortgages. I saw it coming with the insane prices of houses while nobody had received a pay raise in three years. These things are not difficult to see coming and I’m tired of people who think they know better telling everyone afterwards there was no way to know.

In late march of 2020 my boss sat us down in the work room and asked what we could see next? What was coming after the lockdown? After a minute of silence I said, “civil unrest, famines, riots, societal collapse.” It wasn’t what people wanted to hear and so these voices go ignored and forgotten even after things happen. The people in charge say nobody knew to take some responsibility off their own shoulders leaving those that spoke up left out as crazies and undesirables.

Covid-19 is not a black swan event, but the consequences will be. It is not difficult to see the repercussions of Covid-19 on our society. This has been tracked since the beginning. The rise in suicide from the constant lockdowns, the closing of businesses, depression among kids, lack of trust in government and media. So far there are no consequences regarding Covid-19 that haven’t been seen. They are all driven by government policies and the results are easy to see or predict. Our government keeps printing money since tax revenue is not coming in, causing inflation and later a rise in interest rates which will make the federal government insolvent unless it prints more money to pay its bills. The balance books are too far to one side for the national debt to ever be paid back and there aren’t enough resources in the world to cover the damage. None of this is a black swan that nobody could have expected, it’s the obvious repercussions of poor management and credit card policies.

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The Great Reset: Introduction

The following is the beginning of a series about the book Covid-19: The Great Reset written by Klaus Schwab and Thierry Malleret. Some things to consider for this book, since the book has two authors it is unknown what information was added by which author. The authors state that it was written at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic and was published June of 2020. However, the virus was not acknowledged to be an issue until February of 2020. Lockdowns began in the United States in late March and have continued on and off since. Maybe, during a time period where people are forced to be stuck indoors could two men put together such a book but the policies and suggestions laid out mirror previous programs started by the United Nations and the World Economic Forum. My guess is that this has been sitting on a laptop for a while and it finally had its chance to find purpose.

The introduction.

Arguments are made for the book in the introduction, laying out the opportunity that is presently available for making the world a “better” place. There are references to the Black Death that went through Europe killing anywhere from 1/3 to half of the population. The authors point out the end of serfdom and claim that the style of social order disappeared because of the plague. It is a simple argument but they leave out several factors that also took place for the change to occur. The landowners stayed in power and while the workers had more rights there were negotiations that took place because of the lack of workforce available. There was also the cooling period that took place causing a mini-ice age after the plague which also caused a famine, dropping the population even further. It wasn’t until the discovery of the new world that you finally saw an end of the effects that the plague had on Europe. This wasn’t called the Dark Ages for nothing. The influx of new world gold, lumber, tobacco, furs, and crops created a market of abundance that paved the way for the Renaissance. Whether or not this would have happened without the plague we don’t know. Recent discoveries by historians tell us that China had already discovered the new world at the beginning of the 1400s and this might have led to Columbus making the voyage across the ocean. China was in constant trade with Italy during that time.

Towards the end of the introduction there is some praise given to the Enlightenment that eventually came from the Black Death but the policies pushed forward in the Great Reset counter the ideas of the Enlightenment. The rights of the individual. The ability for democracy to rule a government instead of a monarchy. The right to personal property. Free speech and the protection of shared knowledge encompass the enlightenment. These ideas had to be shared in secret with the possible repercussions being death at the hands of the church or the government. The great reset is a new religion founded in environmental justice, social justice, and communist economic reform. While the enlightenment sounds good the rest of the book counters the ideas that countries like the United States were founded on.

Another argument made for the Great Reset includes the right for women to vote. Although, I will point out that it is not made clear which country the authors are referring to. They make the claim that women were not allowed to vote until after WWII and that it was the war effort that made it possible for this advancement in women’s rights. Their place in the workforce moved them into a more acceptable place in society so they could earn the right to vote. This statement is completely false. The right to vote was granted to women in 1919 and signed into law in 1920. 25 years before the end of WWII women had been voting. The downside of women entering the work force during the war was their unwillingness to leave when the men came home. Divorce rates in the 1950s were at record highs and the average pay for men and women dropped with a doubling in the number of paid laborers now in the market. The two-income household had been established along with higher taxes and more expenses. The only upside to the US economy after the war was that we were the industrial complex for the rest of the world having destroyed the Japanese and German infrastructure during the war. If you wanted to purchase a tractor, car, or plane for your business you bought it from the US.

Like any of these books and programs put out by groups like the World Economic Forum there is mention of a New Order. They didn’t say New World Order but they do point out that this would be a program that impacts the world as a whole. I found it interesting how they quoted Camus in his book The Plague, discussing the changes to society after a plague rolled through France. However, this is used as an example of something that happened even though the book is pure fiction and isn’t based on a real event or disease. The dead rats found in the street were the only real sign of what was happening in The Plague. Other than that, no other clues were given as to the illness in the book.

The introduction concludes with the idea that a pandemic gives society an opportunity to change many key factors in our economy and way of life. With the introduction of a plague on the planet governments and institutions are able to change policies so that when it is over there is a new normal that people will already be adapted to. The only thing wrong with this logic is that Covid-19 is not a pandemic of that magnitude. The survival rate is still at 99.9% for the majority of the population. It did not take long to discover inexpensive drugs and supplements that fought the virus raising the survival rate. Vitamin D is a key factor in the severity of the symptoms. Hydroxychloroquine is an early therapy that can be used if someone test positive for the virus but does not have symptoms. In Africa a program called ANTICOV is working to find inexpensive drugs that will drop the death rate even further. The program started in November of 2020 and is already showing promising signs of inexpensive drugs working better than the expensive ventilators that killed 85% of the patients put on them. The Great Reset may be waiting for a pandemic to hit in order to push its policies but Covid-19 is not the pandemic needed for such a policy change.

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The Legal Backing of Forced Vaccines

https://www.dhs.gov/sites/default/files/publications/hr_5005_enr.pdf

I know a lot of people are talking about not receiving the Covid-19 vaccine or mention putting it off to see what the possible side effects are. however, it was brought to my attention in an old video with the late Michael Ruppert were it was pointed out to me that the federal government had already passed laws back in 2002 to force the public to take a vaccine if it was deemed a public health emergency. The Homeland security act, the same law that created the department of Homeland Security, states that US citizens can be given vaccines if there is a major health crisis like a bioweapon released into the population. while the law uses Smallpox as an example of a weaponized disease it doesn’t state this is the only disease it applies to. If you look into the act further you will find that people who refuse the vaccine can be deemed as domestic terrorists and not be given due process, and detained indefinitely.

Currently, the head of the CDC has stated they don’t know how much of the vaccine exist and can not estimate how much will be given to the public this year. Considering the questionable roll out of this vaccine it is no wonder why Dr. Fauci is now recommending two mask instead of one.

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Chinese Butt Stuff

If 2020 wasn’t bad enough here is some more fun stuff to look forward to. Since last year, Chinese government officials have been administering anal swabs to test individuals in hotspots to determine if they are infected with the Covid-19 virus. the test is now being given in Beijing with a current outbreak underway of a new version of the virus first seen in England. Chinese medical professionals say the anal swab test is more accurate than any of the previous versions developed. The test involves a two inch probe that is administered into the rectum and rotated to retrieve a sample. It has not been stated if the test is optional or not.

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Doctor dies after taking Covid-19 Vaccine

In Florida, a medical doctor died less than two weeks after receiving the first shot of the Covid-19 vaccine made by Pfizer. The vaccine was given on December 19, 2020 and the doctor died on January 3, 2021. Three days after receiving the shot, Dr. Gregory Michaels a56 year old OBGYN with his own practice, notice spots on his skin and was taken to the local emergency room. Upon arrival Dr. Michaels was admitted to the ICU where he was never discharged. Michael’s body lost its ability to have the blood clot and he died of a stroke with no previous history of this condition. The Miami medical examiner is currently investigating the death to see if it is linked to the vaccine. Pfizer says it is also investigating the death while denying that the vaccine is to blame.

The Pfizer Covid-19 vaccine is the first ever mRNA vaccine. Instead of creating a weakened version of a virus this version rewrites the DNA of white blood cells training them to fight Covid-19. Long term effects of the vaccine are not known and many steps of the research process were skipped in the process of creating this vaccine. The first day of administering the vaccine in England saw a nurse have a severe allergic reaction putting her into anaphylactic shock and needed to be resuscitated. The UK government immediately stated that the vaccine could only be administered in a facility where people could be resuscitated if needed.

Meanwhile, in India, the largest producer of vaccines caught on fire with five people dying. The Serum Institute is one of the foreign companies Pfizer depends on for the production of the Covid-19 vaccine overseas. The Serum Institute says the fire will not effect the production of the vaccine.

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The Unmovable Mountain

In the last year 35% of all money created in the United States was made. I refuse to say printed because the national mint didn’t print off this cash. It was done digitally with a bunch of 1s and 0s instantly devaluing savings accounts and the buying power of the dollar all over the world. It was only 20 years ago when Bill Clinton left office after 8 years as president and we had a surplus of money in the federal government. Then came Dubya and it all changed. There had been some shady stuff going on before then with Donald Rumsfeld telling the nation that 2.3 trillion dollars was missing from pentagon accounting books.

What we have been seeing isn’t new. The federal reserve bailout out wall street after they gambled all their money away. Then Obama spent hundreds of billions of dollars on a stimulus bill. Through quantitative easing the federal reserve bought the bad stocks wall street didn’t want and handed the bill off to the American tax payer. Now there is a new kind of theft taking place.

The COVID-19 lockdowns are shutting down small businesses all over the country. The public is forced to buy their food and goods through big chain outlets that are not affected by the lockdown protocols. People who are out of work or have their businesses shut down are at risk of losing their homes because they cannot pay their bills. Keep in mind that if people are not working there are no federal income taxes coming in. At the moment the house and the senate are talking over a COVID-19 relief bill that will have no way of paying for it. Again, they are printing off money while devaluing the dollar. In a situation like this what are people to do?

I have often thought about this question and in a world where everything appears to be falling apart there are a handful of things that will gain value outside of the dollar. If you are looking for currency related items gold and silver are the obvious choices. These metals have never lost their value over the centuries. A large amount of wealth can be transferred with little weight to move it. When gold reached $2000 an ounce a few pounds could be equivalent to a life time of savings. In the words of Ron Swanson “I have already said too much.”

Land. This was an obvious choice for me. With land comes opportunity. The more land you own the more you can do with it. I would recommend only buying what you can handle on your own. I currently own 15 acres. A goo portion of that land will be used for homesteading. The wild sections will be used for foraging and hunting. The woods also provide a reusable source of fresh compost for crops. Timber heats the house and cabin. With a homestead or farm there are other investments that will rise in value in the coming years. Farm equipment will have a high value along with fresh food with the way our current food situation is. China is buying up any soy and protein they can get their hands on. A large section of our corn crops was destroyed in a wind storm. China has been experiencing a drought in their bread basket for a few years now. Much of this can be learned through the ice age farmer YouTube channel and podcast.

Choose quality over quantity. This is true for many things ranging from clothes to tools. Buy a good pair of boots, jeans, shirts, the type that will last for years. Buy a good knife. Make sure you are not buying cheap gardening tools that will only last one season. For god’s sake stay away from Harbor Freight.

Buy a good quality vehicle, one that you can work on. You should be able to change the oil, switch out the air filter, and replace the fuel filter on your own. Bravo to those who go beyond that. Pick up a repair manual for the make and model of your vehicle. If you can, keep extra parts stored away in case there is a breakdown that can be fixed at home.

Beyond these things there is the usual list of things one should have. Food, self defense items, and a supply of cash incase cards are not taken at stores or bank accounts can’t be accessed. Learn about your neighbors and what they have that can be traded and bartered. If your neighbor is a corn farmer try growing something besides corn that he might want incase you have to trade for supplies. If everyone in your area grows tobacco grow food instead.  Set yourself apart so that you can be useful to the community around you.

I hope this article is helpful to those out there looking for some guidance in these troubling times. I will touch on these topics further in the near future and talk about them on my YouTube channel, The Collapse Experiment.

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2020, The Long Slow Goodbye

A few days ago, I learned that John Le Carre, a veteran of the cold war and seasoned writer of high-quality spy novels, died at the age of 89. The comment had to be added to the official announcement that he did not die from COVID-19. This is a good bye for two reasons, the author of Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy would never writer another ground breaking novel again, and we can’t hear about anyone dying without having COVID-19 added to it one way or another.

A year ago, at this time we were living free from lock downs, wearing mask, and election drama. I still called myself a liberal. While I was starting to see a change in the city, I always lived I still had a love for it and what it could be. There was the cushy job that paid too much money with little work and responsibility. The house that I still owned since 2004 that I had already dished out $78,000 for and I still owed $43,000 on a $65,000 mortgage. Don’t ask me how the math on that works out. Life was cruising along and then news started to come out of China.

In the last year we lost Sean Connery, John Le Carre, Kirk Douglas, Kelly Preston, Jerry Stiller, and Eddie Van Halen. The list is longer and people would be pissed if I didn’t mention RBG, but to be honest with you I think that one had been living on borrowed time for a few years already. The year doesn’t compare to 2016 when we heard about a new celebrity death every couple of days but that was the good old days. When all you have to look forward to on the news is who died now maybe life isn’t that bad, for you that is, sucks for the dead guy. What was different was how every death this year was over shadowed by COVID-19. Except for Kobe Bryant there was always the question if the person they were talking about had died from COVID-19, or if they died of something else but had COVID-19. The story was never about the life of the person who had died but instead played second fiddle to a disease.

Celebrities aren’t the only thing dying this year. The country appears to be on life support as businesses shut down and lives are destroyed. Several places I loved going to no longer exist. Restaurants, breweries, and small shops have closed their doors for good. For many, the sense of having a future to look forward to has disappeared. The media continues to ignore the record number of suicides that states have been seeing while they continue to keep people isolated for no good reason at all. The American dream has been reserved for a select few, and unless you are prospering from the current economic conditions then this does not include you. The constitution has been under fire these days and like the bible thumpers I grew up with people have started to take a selective approach to the bill of rights. BLM is allowed to protest because it is their first amendment right. People are not allowed to protest the lockdowns because the government says so. Statues were torn down, building set on fire, people killed in the streets in the name of… something and nobody appeared to be arrested or held accountable. Meanwhile if you open your business to make money, while following CDC guidelines so that you can feed your family and keep a roof over your head you will go to jail. COVID-19 didn’t do this, we did this to ourselves. The government over reacted and continued policies more dangerous than a disease and we as a people let it happen and continue. Vaccines have been administered this week and even if the majority of the country has been stuck in the arm with a needle the government is saying we will still have to continue with our current policies. Democracy, the constitution, and the bill or rights also died this year.

Four states changed election rules without going through their state legislature in accordance to the constitution of the united states. When 20 other states tried to sue over this the supreme court declined to hear the case. Voting machines that had been purchased through Canada have been shown to alter votes, and while people like John Oliver stated a year ago that this was a problem. Now we are supposed to believe that there was nothing wrong with these machines.

Race relations have never been worse. A constant barrage of stories about racism and defining people by the color of their skin has alienated the country from itself.

A job that I thought was secure turned into a SJW cesspool, or maybe it always had been and I just didn’t want to see it. Emails went out to POCs (people of color) to have meeting with only them, segregating the employees. Over a span of two years several highly regarded famous authors died with no presentation, display, or mention of the event on the library website. Jim Harrison, Anthony Bourdain, Philip Roth, Elie Wiesel, Sam Shepard, and Harlan Ellison died during the time I work for the library and out of the list Anthony Bourdain had a display, only because I put one together on a cart and wheeled it out into the lobby. There it stayed for a week before it was taken down and the materials returned to the shelves. I had requested a display for Tony, even suggesting a link to suicide prevention, but I was told that “If we did a display for every author who died we would always have a display up.” Somewhere along the way the library had lost its way as to what a library is. Without writers a library would not exist. Somewhere along the way libraries had forgotten where they started and why they existed. And we wonder why people don’t read anymore?

My city started to implode. It was socially acceptable and encouraged to say that white people were evil. Riots happened downtown with windows smashed, and stores looted. The public sided with the rioters while the store owners cleaned up the mess and had to cover the cost. A year before a few members of the Proud Boys went to Bells Brewing for a beer. An out spoken member of the community refused to let them in the brewery saying they were not welcome here and harassed them until they left, while taking photos of their vehicles and license plates to post them online. These are the “open minded” and “socially understanding” people that had started to take over the city. A year later, nobody spoke up against BLM when they trashed the city while screaming about police brutality. The cops used tear gas when they refused to go home and all hell broke loose. The police were under fire for doing their jobs. The Proud boys came back to hold a rally. I watched the entire 1 hour 45-minute uncut video of their march through the city with the poorly narrated dialogue of a man who insisted on telling the camera the exact opposite of everything that happened. The proud boys marched to Bronson park, said some words, and went back to their cars. Meanwhile counter protesters threatened to hit the marchers with sticks and rocks. Flags were stolen and pepper spray used. The local media pushed the idea that the proud boys instigated the violence by showing up. The BLM protesters were arrested for assault and the chief of police was forced to resign for what the public viewed as a poorly handled situation. Later a memorial to a fallen officer was removed from the downtown mall because of public complaint and constant vandalism. My city, the one that I loved, no longer existed.

A brewery that I had gone to since 2013 closed its doors months before their 7th anniversary. The last day was filled with speeches of gratitude and memories that would live on forever. We tried to remain upbeat but by the end of the night men were hugging and crying at the loss of such a great place.

The union closed their doors after we had moved out of town. A place that I wrote about several times, for their live jazz shows, upscale beer selection, and comfortable atmosphere it had a special place in my heart with good food to add to the list. Reasons for staying were disappearing.

2020 has been a long slow good bye to everything that made this country great. From the small businesses that make up the majority of jobs in this country, to the Bill of Rights that has been under attack by the same people who freely use it while arguing you cannot. In a year we have entered some kind of upside-down world where nothing makes sense and to try to live the way you did a year ago is now illegal and you will be punished several ways for it.

People have talked about the new normal and I will admit that everything is changing all the time. There are some things that we need to hold onto. Change can be good but when you do too much you lose a part of yourself or your culture. The country is divided and as I write this there is talk of dividing the country physically. The west coast wants to be liberal democratic states and they can have it. The Midwest from the Rockies to the Appalachian Mountains want to be conservative republican “leave us the F*ck alone” states. Then there is the east coast that is a little more complicated. While I live in Michigan which somehow went from Trump country to Biden wasteland, I can tell you that if you are not in a larger city you are in Trump country. This land is the opposite of where I left. I have seen BLM bumper stickers on the backs of cars and wondered if anyone was going to say something. But there is a simple philosophy here. You don’t bother us; we don’t bother you. I don’t know why that was so hard in Kalamazoo. The country is tolerant, but remember, when you start crap here, these people will finish it. Burn your own cities. March in your streets. Tear yourselves apart. But don’t bring that shit here.

2020 has been a long slow good bye to a lot of things. I left my job. I left my city. I left the Democratic party. I sold a house that I owned for 16 years. I lost my favorite bar. I lost faith in people. I lost trust in government. The list goes on and on. 2020 has been perpetual loss and saying goodbye is something we are all good at now.

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