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May 112012
 
Urban Drift :  A Worrying Trend

The chances are you live in a city.  Indeed, the chances are 4:1 or more that you live in or close to a city/urban center. This wasn’t always the case.  If we go back a couple of hundred years, in 1800, it is thought that only about 3% of the world’s population lived in urban areas. Skip forward to 1900, and the number had risen to 14%, although most cities were small rather than big.  […]

May 062012
 
TEOTWAWKI - By Solar Storm?

Here’s an interesting story from the LA Times about increased activity on/from the sun and the dangers such things pose to our comfortable life as we currently know and enjoy it. Stated simply – solar storms can disrupt and/or destroy electrical power distribution systems, power lines, transformers, and the devices connected to them.  In today’s electricity-dependent world, none of this is good. One point we’d disagree with – the story says : Much of the […]

May 032012
 
Many Believe The End of the World is Approaching - Implications for Preppers

An international survey just released suggests that 15% of people world-wide believe the world will end during their lifetime. The least pessimistic countries were France (6% expect the world to end), Belgium (7%) and Britain (8%).  Here in the US people are the most pessimistic, with 22% of people expecting the world to end in their lifetime, the same percentage as in Turkey.  People see the world ending for a variety of reasons, including biblical […]

May 012012
 
More Economic Uncertainty and Risk

There’s a reason economics is called ‘the dismal science’. Much of economics is not at all scientific.  It is imprecise, unrepeatable, and based on each economist’s personal value system – they say that if you get ‘n’ economists in a room, you’ll end up with ‘n + 1’ opinions about the economy and what to do about it.  We’d never have recessions, depressions, slow-downs, crises, or everything else bad if economics was an exact science. […]

Apr 302012
 
Flash Mobs and Social Media - a 21st Century Threat

There’s nothing new about rioting and civil/social disruption. Indeed, it is currently the 20th anniversary of what are known as the ‘Rodney King Riots’ in Los Angeles – a five-day period of mayhem that erupted with no notice, and which saw looting, destruction, arson and murder across substantial parts of South Central Los Angeles. It is helpful to quickly review lessons from this before moving on to a look at future vulnerabilities. The Rodney King/South […]

Apr 102012
 
Two Major Potential Threats to the US in One Week

Neither threat is new, but both have been uttered again this week, and with more vehemence than before. Threat 1 :  Iran Our good friends the Iranians (not!) are reputed to be preparing an army to launch against the US, waging war against the country’s infrastructure such as our power grid, water supplies, and other public infrastructure components. But this ‘war’ would not be fought on American soil, and wouldn’t see combat between our troops […]

Mar 312012
 
Fire in Obscure Small German Company Threatens World Auto Production

There was a fire in a factory in the tiny German town of Marl, in a factory belonging to Evonik Industries, on 31 March 2012. This is hardly earth shattering news – on the same day, there were probably fires in your own home town too, and countless others elsewhere in the world. But, as uninteresting as this fire in a far away place may seem, today we live in a global village.  Nowhere is […]

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