Monday, October 6, 2008

Those who don't remember history...

...are doomed to repeat it. That's the way I remembered the quote, anyway, but turns out I was a little off. According to this page, it actually goes like this: " Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it," and it is attributed to one George Santayana (about whom I know very little, but about whom you can read here-- an article where it gives yet another version of the saying. In any case, you get the idea. :) I thought of this quote after thinking about something that I heard on the radio this weekend.

We went out of town this past weekend, and had some time to listen to talk radio while traveling. When I got home, I tried to find at least some of the information that Glenn Beck mentioned on his program, and found something that he said on his website that was somewhat similar. Apparently, I kind of remembered what happened concerning the Great Depression incorrectly. If you look here, about the 9th paragraph down, you will see what I mean. I thought that when the stock market crashed, in 1929, that it was all over and done. That the crash was immediate and devastating, and that the bread lines and everything associated with the Great Depression started in 1929. According to this information, however, the situation went up and down, with people thinking things were changing for the better at times, but then the Great Depression really started in 1933, and lasted for 10 years.

I looked for further information on Wikipedia. In this article, under the second section entitled, "The snowball spiral," it pretty much confirms what I heard on the radio. I give the source from Glenn Beck, with its approximate location in the article, because that is where I first learned that I either misunderstood history, or remembered it incorrectly. I give the second from Wikipedia, because even though it is unknown who contributed to the article, it confirms the first information that I heard. Please look up your own sources, (and share them if you'd like) but my point is this: just because it looks like it is going to get better, it may not be so. If the problems in the economy do not immediately cause hardship like that found in the Great Depression, it does not mean that it will not eventually happen.

And, of course, it does not mean that it will happen, either. But if we decide that we want to learn from history, and this portrayal of history is correct, what can we learn from it that we can use to our advantage? The way that I look at it is this: get your food storage in while you can. Not a big surprise, considering the fact that this blog is based on emergency preparedness. But if you prepare, and things such as food costs do turn out to be better at the moment than they will be in the very near future, you will not have fallen into the category of those who didn't prepare because of their expectation that if there were going to be problems they would have happened already, what with the economy and all. The stock market is experiencing difficulties, (an understatement from someone who is again not qualified to comment that much on it) but the prices of food at the time that I write this have not yet escalated in a sudden fashion. Things were already becoming more and more expensive, but I have not seen a huge raising of prices in conjunction with recent market fluctuations. If you have the means, please put aside something now, because every little bit that you store will help you in the long run, whether the prices go up or not. By using stored food later, you will free up money for other needs you will have then. As I see it, storing food puts you in a win-win situation, and in my recollection, there hasn't been anything mentioned about prices going down when the problems in the current economy have been discussed.

What else can we take from the very limited information I present here? Perhaps one thing is that if you can't store food right now, you may get another chance to do so if things take a turn for the better. There is always hope, and as no one knows what will happen in the future, including whether upcoming economic conditions will mirror the Great Depression or not, it can't hurt to be optimistic and have a good attitude while preparing ourselves for possible emergencies. As has been said many times, "Hope for the best and prepare for the worst." Action in preparing ourselves for hard times can improve our lives and our attitudes...our action gives us something that we can control in uncertain times. Yeah, I'm not proud about the fact that I misunderstood what happened in the Great Depression--but I can learn from it now and do my best to prepare for the possibilities of the future. 10 years. All the more reason to increase my storage, and learn what I need to do to perpetuate that storage--it will help in good times, and be downright indispensible should history repeat itself...


riverwalker said...

I see these things coming within the next year to two years:

1. High levels of unemployment.
2. Further decline of housing
3. Lower inventories of food
at local markets.
4. Lower inventories of
durable goods.
5. Fuel shortages for
heating and vehicles.
6. No credit for purchases.

Simply put, tough times are probably ahead. People are going to have to learn to do without some of the excess "luxury" itmes.


Wendy said...

I knew that the Great Depression lasted 10 years, but the gradual onset of desperate times also surprised me. Thanks for the heads-up!


The Scavenger said...

Thanks, I have learned a thing or two here for sure. I too thought the Great Depression was kinda of an all of a sudden thing. Never knew that that it came years after the market crash.

Storing food is just a smart thing to do with the economy in near shambels. It's just smart even if it weren't.


Marie said...

Riverwalker--That's a great list--not a particularly happy one, but if people got ready for all of those possibilities they would be better prepared if/when they had to deal with them. I appreciate your input!

Wendy--It was actually the fact that it didn't just start in 1929 that surprised me the most--I knew that WWII had a lot to do with ending it, but when I think of 10 years of that kind of situation, it makes me try to seriously figure out what the best way would be to deal with that. Thanks for your comment!

Chris-- I appreciate your comment, and I agree with you that storing food is the smart thing to do, economy or not. You never know when you'll have a personal emergency--a national crisis is not the only time that you might be glad that you put something away for a rainy day. As for the really bad times during the Depression taking awhile to arrive, if it applies now, I hope that means that we'll have more time to prepare--I need it. :)

hsjacobus said...

Amen! We're not the first generation to go through this "Case in point The Great Depression" and I'm sure we won't be the last, but we are the least prepared, both in storage and know how. You tell 'em!

Marie said...

HSJacobus--I always keep hoping that more and more people will get prepared, like you said, both in storage and know-how, so that it will be easier for all of us when times get tough. Thanks for your comment!

Food Storage Info said...

I have never actually considered long term food storage,but after reading this blog I will definitely take it into consideration.


Marie said...

I hope everyone will consider it if they possibly can because it can help in so many situations. Mine is a work in progress--good luck with yours if you decide to move forward. Thanks for your comment.