This post is about three things:
- Where We Are
- How We Got Here
- Where We’re Likely Headed
More specifically, this is a list of the most profound and impactful pieces of educational content I have encountered with a specific focus on the intersection of economy, energy and finance as it pertains to our dominant societal narrative – that the future will be bigger than the present, that there will be more of everything (people, houses, cars, consumption, debt, oil, fish in the ocean…and so on) and that we (humans) are somehow beyond the grasp of the limits of a finite planet.
If you see value in increasing your financial literacy, understanding how the current economic machine works and understanding where we are as a society in the seasonal cycles of history, then I can recommend no set of resources more highly than those listed in this post. I hope these amazing presentations are as fruitful for you as they have been and continue to be for me, and that by deepening your understanding of Where We Are, How We Got Here and Where We’re Likely Headed you will be better able to interact with the edges of the Beast without becoming consumed by it.
In cultivating awareness we can build understanding, and from understanding we can design and create alternative systems that move us away from the current norms of extractive economics and debt-fueled scarcity towards a thriving state of abundance for as many humans as possible.
The truths laid bare and the history revisited in these presentations is enough to lead many to run away with their fingers in their ears, choosing willful ignorant “bliss” instead of the often shocking but ultimately empowering knowledge of how things actually are.
I have to finish this preamble with a reminder that the end goal of arming oneself with this information and understanding is to be empowered – to understand things as they really are – and to take actions that align your values with the paradigm of regeneration. It is common, especially if this is your first time encountering this information, to fall into one of the first four of the 5 Stages of Grief (Denial, Anger, Bargaining, Depression, Acceptance). That is OK – just keep moving through it. Don’t let the perceived enormity of it all paralyze you to inaction. Ultimately the only thing that any of us has any control over is ourselves.
OK, down the rabbit hole we go.
WHERE WE ARE
Most people will not finish this. It takes some serious dedication and a willingness to check you assumptions and accept hard truths to get through this and digest it. However, Peak Prosperity’s Crash Course is perhaps the single most impactful self-education course on the intersection of economy, energy and environment. I know of no other program like it. This series is an amazing resource for gaining clarity on where we are, how we got here, and where we’re likely headed with respect to the economy, energy and the environment.
Each chapter (video) is between 3 and 25 minutes in length. The total course is 4 hours and 36 minute long. We’d recommend breaking this up over the course of a weekend.
If you could only do one thing from all that is suggested in this post, watch the Crash Course.
If you absolutely can’t stomach the thought of watching nearly 5 hours of videos, at the very least set aside 1 hour and watch Chris’s Accelerated Crash Course, a condensed version of the full Crash Course.
This video is a clear and concise animated look at exactly how it is our modern day economy works. This video explores the multiple layers of cycles that create a sort of ‘pulse’ within our current centralized debt-backed fiat financial system. He does an excellent job of clearly defining the differences between money and credit, explaining the mechanisms of inflation and deflation, and examining the interrelationship between debt, income and geopolitical upheaval.
A very timely video, it is neither a statement for or against our current system, simply a look at what is. While many of us would never choose to support a financial system such as the one we have now, it is an edge that we (almost) have to interact with, and with a better understanding of the machine we can align our efforts with feeding the nascent regenerative economy and slowly but steadily ending our participation in the extractive economy.
Shock Induced Aggression – We Are The Rats In The Cage
A short 6 minute video put out by Chris Martenson of Peak Prosperity examining the well-studied concept of shock-induced aggression and how we are seeing it manifest around the world in the forms of political upheaval, increasing polarization and social unrest. This video provides a quick framework for understanding how we are manipulated, divided, and turned against each other, as well as a lens to become aware of this phenomenon and how to withdraw from it. A quick shot in the arm and call to be our higher selves amidst economic, energetic and political unraveling.
If you’ve gone through all of the materials listed above (no small feat, I know) this video will make plainly evident what we are living through right now.
HOW WE GOT HERE
Mike Maloney’s Hidden Secrets of Money Series
This is an excellent tour through monetary and economic history, covering the numerous forms of money over the millennia as well as the origins of our current debt-backed fiat money system, and ultimately doing a deep dive into the causes of the 2008 financial crisis and the continued can-kicking since then. The final video in the series takes a look at the advent of cryptocurrency, in particular the creation of Hashgraph.
Most episodes are around a half hour, and make for great discussion seeds. Should you have the rare and awesome type of friends that would be interested expanding their understanding of modern finance and the economic predicament we now find ourselves in these videos are excellent for anchoring an evening of academic discussion.
An excellent stand alone series, and even better adjunct to the Crash Course, this series is top notch.
WHERE WE’RE LIKELY HEADED
BOOK: The 4th Turning: An American Prophecy – What The Cycles Of History Tell Us About America’s Next Rendezvous With Destiny – by William Strauss and Neil Howe
A deeply researched historical look at the cycles that create generations and eras. This book draws out the pattern of the saeculum (“a long human life”) and the societal turnings that have been repeating themselves within that time period since before America was a nation. Strauss and Howe lay out their concept of the Four Turnings (High – Awakening – Unraveling – Crisis – can you guess which one we’re in?), each of which is characterized by a different constellation of generations interacting at four different phases of life. Much like a forest changing with the four seasons, human society moves through the Four Turnings as it cleanses, renews, grows and decays.
This brief 14 minute video has Neil Howe giving a concise overview of the 4th Turning and tying it back to where we are today and what ‘moment’ we are in. An excellent synopsis that will illustrate the broad concept, but we highly recommend reading this book if you’re interested to learn what history can tell us about the larger trends and societal shifts we are likely to experience by 2030.