Economic Collapse Blog: More than half “plan to stockpile food and other essentials” for the months ahead

Michael Snyder at The Economic Collapse says that More than half of all Americans “plan to stockpile food and other essentials” for the chaotic months ahead

There was a time when preppers were relentlessly mocked, but nobody is laughing now.  Today, most Americans are thinking about stockpiling food, and this massive shift in our national mindset has been sparked by concern about what is going to happen in the months ahead.  Many Americans believe that another wave of the coronavirus pandemic is coming, others believe that our ongoing economic depression will get even deeper, and yet others are convinced that the upcoming election could produce widespread violence.  Of course there have always been people that have been deeply alarmed about future events, but we have never seen anything quite like this.  In fact, a brand new survey has found that over half of all Americans are currently planning “to stockpile food and other essentials”

Slightly more than half of Americans in a recent poll from Sports and Leisure Research Group say they already have or plan to stockpile food and other essentials. The chief reason: fears of a resurgent pandemic, which could lead to disruptions such as new restrictions on businesses. On Oct. 2, the number of COVID-19 cases in the USA was its highest in almost two months.

People still remember the shortages that we witnessed earlier this year when the coronavirus pandemic first erupted in this country, and those that ended up being stuck at home without enough toilet paper would rather not repeat that experience.

So as the mainstream media continues to hype a new wave of the pandemic, we should expect to see Americans hitting the grocery stores really hard.  And according to data company Envestnet Yodlee, there is evidence that this is already happening

Already, there’s some evidence that grocery sales are rising, according to data from industry sources. The typical bill for a trip to the grocery store rose to $72 for the week ended October 6, or 11% higher from the week before, according to data company Envestnet Yodlee.

“That’s the highest we’ve seen since the first week of June and the second-highest since we started tracking this in January,” said Bill Parsons, group president of data and analytics at Evestnet.

Fortunately, many grocery store chains anticipated a spike in demand in advance and started stocking up ahead of time.  The following comes from CNN

Grocery stores across the United States are stocking up on products to avoid shortages during a second wave of coronavirus.

Household products — including paper towels and Clorox wipes — have been difficult to find at times during the pandemic, and if grocery stores aren’t stocked up and prepared for second wave this winter, runs on products and shortages could happen again.

During a time when other retailers all over the nation are failing at a pace that we have never seen before, many grocery store chains are actually experiencing booming sales.

And of course I have been warning that this would eventually happen for a very long time.  During a time of crisis, demand for food and other essentials tends to go up and demand for non-essential items tends to go down.

Needless to say, this is something that is not just happening in the United States.  All over the world we have seen demand for food on the rise, and this comes at a time when global food production has become increasingly stressed.

As a result, food prices all over the world are starting to escalate quite aggressively

Food prices continue rising during the coronavirus pandemic, jeopardizing food security for tens of millions worldwide.

On Thursday, the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations said world food prices rose for the fourth consecutive month in September, led by surging prices for cereals and vegetable oils, reported Reuters.

FAO’s food price index, which tracks the international prices of the top traded food commodities (cereals, oilseeds, dairy products, meat, and sugar), averaged 97.9 in September versus a downwardly revised 95.9 in August.

Sadly, this is just the beginning.

Global food supplies will continue to get even tighter, and global demand for food will just continue to shoot higher.

So I would stock up while you still can, because prices will never be lower than they are right now.

Meanwhile, our society continues to unravel right in front of our eyes.  You would think that the Lakers winning the NBA title would be a time to celebrate for the city of Los Angeles, but instead large crowds of young people used it as an opportunity to riot and attack police officers

A crowd of more than 1,000 revelers descended into the area around Staples Center after the game. Unruly individuals mixed within the crowd began throwing glass bottles, rocks, and other projectiles at officers. That is when an unlawful assembly was declared, and only a limited number of people complied and began to disperse. A larger portion of the group broke off and began vandalizing businesses while continuing to engage in violent behavior, some aimed at responding officers.

In Portland, protesters just toppled statues of Teddy Roosevelt and Abraham Lincoln during a “day of rage”, but the mainstream media didn’t seem to think that this was any sort of a problem.

And in the middle of the country, the violence never seems to stop in the city of Chicago

Five people were killed and 48 others were injured by gunfire this weekend in Chicago. Five of those wounded were teenagers.

Last weekend saw 37 people shot throughout the city, five of them fatally.

Of course things could soon get a whole lot worse.

According to one recent survey, 56 percent of all Americans expect “an increase in violence as a result of the election”.

Isn’t that incredibly sad?

Many are still hoping that such a scenario can be avoided if one of the candidates is able to build an extremely large lead on election night.  A large enough lead could potentially cause the candidate that is behind to concede fairly quickly, and that may ease tensions.

But I wouldn’t count on that.

At this point we are about 500 hours away from the election, and both sides are indicating that they are prepared to fight until the bitter end.

And the side that ultimately ends up losing is likely to throw a massive temper tantrum, and that won’t be good for our country at all.

So it makes sense that so many Americans are making extra preparations for the months that are ahead, because it definitely appears that they could be quite rocky.

The Economic Collapse: 50 Million Americans Fighting Hunger by Year End

Michael Snyder of The Economic Collapse blog has a couple of posts up about hunger and food in the US. First up, It Is Being Projected That More Than 50 Million Americans Will Be Fighting Hunger By The End Of This Year

…Because of all the crazy things that have happened so far in 2020, large numbers of people have been forced into dramatic lifestyle changes.  Many Americans have deeply cut their food budgets due to a lack of income, others are now only eating one or two meals a day, and we are seeing more demand at food banks around the country than we ever have before.  It is quite obvious that massive numbers of people are really hurting, and Bloomberg is reporting that it is being projected that the number of Americans that are “fighting hunger” will rise to “more than 50 million” by the end of this calendar year…

The ranks of Americans fighting hunger are projected to swell some 45% this year to more than 50 million.

To me, that is an absolutely staggering figure.

Right now, the U.S. has a total population of about 328 million people, and so that figure that Bloomberg quoted represents a sizable chunk of the country.

And we certainly don’t have to wait until the end of the year for the numbers to get really, really bad.  In fact, it is being reported that one recent survey found that approximately one-tenth of all U.S. households “haven’t had enough food in a given week”

During the pandemic, about a 10th of American households reported they haven’t had enough food in a given week. That’s a shocking figure for the world’s richest country. It’s more than double pre-Covid figures and the highest since comparable government data starts in 1995.

I feel especially bad for the children that are going hungry.

Can you imagine how bad parents must feel when their children tell them that they are hungry and the parents have nothing to provide?

And this is just the beginning.  Food prices are going to continue skyrocketing over the coming year, and that is just going to stretch family budgets even more.

A few days ago, I strongly urged my readers to stockpile food for the chaotic times that are ahead.  Food prices are only going to go higher, and economic conditions are going to continue to deteriorate.

In fact, some more major job cuts were just announced.  For example, Ford just announced that it will be eliminating “1,400 white collar jobs”

Ford is looking to cut 1,400 white collar jobs in a cost-savings move.

The automaker sent out letters to employees Wednesday saying that salaried staff eligible for retirement would be getting early retirement offers next week. Those who take the offer by October 23 would be leaving the company by the end of the year.

And United Airlines just announced that they will be furloughing more than 16,000 workers

With no air travel rebound or new federal help in sight, United Airlines says it will furlough about 20% of its frontline employees in less than a month’s time.

In a new memo to its employees, United (UAL) says that 16,370 employees will be furloughed when payroll restrictions attached to a federal bailout expire October 1.

Because most Americans live paycheck to paycheck, a job loss can plunge a family into dire straits very rapidly.  All over the U.S., we are seeing long lines of people driving very nice vehicles waiting for up to six hours to get food at local food banks.

Over the past 23 weeks, more than 58 million Americans have filed initial claims for unemployment benefits, and many of them have “suddenly” found themselves in need of food.  For a lot of them, it is the first time something like this has ever happened to them.

And so many people that I talk to believe that what we have experienced so far is just the tip of the iceberg and that much worse is coming.  There is such a sense of urgency in the air, and gun sales just keep setting record after record.  In fact, we just learned that gun sales during the month of August were 57 percent higher than last year

And Michael’s advice a few days ago, Buy Lots Of Food And Store It Some Place Safe, Because Very Difficult Times Are Approaching

Things have already gotten quite crazy, but they are going to get even crazier.  Global food supplies have already gotten tight, but they are going to get even tighter.  When even the UN starts using the word “biblical” to describe the famine that the world is facing, that is a sign that the hour is very late.  Thankfully, we are not facing famine in the short-term here in the United States, but “temporary shortages” of certain items have already been popping up, and food prices are aggressively shooting higher.  Earlier today my wife stopped by the grocery store to pick up a couple of things, and one particular item that used to cost about 12 dollars was now 20 dollars instead.  But thanks to the Federal Reserve, this is about as low as food prices are going to get.  The Fed seems absolutely determined to crank up inflation, and that is going to have very serious implications during the times that are ahead.  Right now we have a window of opportunity before the next wave of trouble comes along, and I would greatly encourage you to use this window of opportunity to buy lots of food and store it some place safe.

Some people seem to think that if they have stored up a couple months worth of food that they will be just fine.

Unfortunately, that is not the reality of what we are facing.  The truth is that you should have enough food to feed every single person in your household for an extended period of time, and many of you will need much more than that.  Because when things get really crazy, many of the friends, neighbors and extended family members that neglected to prepare will come knocking on your door asking for help.

There are some people that would turn away those friends, neighbors and extended family members, but I couldn’t do that.  Yes, they are at fault for refusing to get prepared, but I just couldn’t turn them out into the street.

If you also plan to assist those around you that are in need, that just makes your job even bigger.  In the end, there is a limit to what any of us can do, and so we will do what we can with what we have and we will leave the rest to God.

The overwhelming demand that we are witnessing at food banks around the nation right now gives us some clues about what we can expect as economic conditions get even worse.  In Alameda County, vehicles are lining up “as early as seven in the morning” just to get a little bit of food from the local food banks…

“They start lining up as early as seven in the morning and this will run for six straight hours” said Altfest.

Hundreds of cars slowly snake their way through the parking lot across from the Acura dealership on Interstate 880. Folks from all walks of life driving everything from Toyota’s, BMW’s, to Mercedes, all coming to get food. Folks are grateful for the charity.

When I read that quote from a local CBS news report, it struck me that it sounded almost exactly like what Heidi Baker said when she saw people waiting in line to get food…

And I saw all these people and they had beautiful cars, 4 by 4’s and Lexus, Mercedez, BMW’s, Toyotas. There they were with fancy shiny cars, but they were standing in line.

On the east coast we are seeing similar things happen.

In fact, there was a quarter-mile line at the break of dawn at a food bank in Queens on Saturday

The line stretched a quarter-mile before the sun was barely up Saturday, snaking around corners like bread lines in the 1930s. But the hungry in Queens are today’s New Yorkers, left jobless by the coronavirus.

Until the pandemic struck the city, La Jornada food pantry used to hand out groceries to roughly 1,000 families a week. Now, the figure tops 10,000. And volunteers serve lunch every day to 1,000 — many of them kids with growling stomachs. Across the five boroughs, the hungry number in the hundreds of thousands, the Food Bank of New York estimates.

I found it quite interesting that the New York Post is comparing what is happening now to the “bread lines in the 1930s”.

This is the reality of what we are facing people.  So many people are already in desperate need, and this “perfect storm” is just getting started.

In the Richmond, Virginia area things are even worse.  According to one recent report, vehicles have been lining up at one food bank “as early as six hours” before it opens…

TMIN: Chicago, Portland, Baltimore – The Things We Have Been Warned About Are Now Starting To Happen

Michael Snyder talks about escalating violence across the US at The Most Important News – Chicago, Portland, Baltimore – The Things We Have Been Warned About Are Now Starting To Happen

Whether for good or for bad, the United States always sets an example for the rest of the world, and right now people all over the globe are watching violence fill the streets of our major cities.  For years, we could all see anger building to extremely dangerous levels in our society, but I think that most Americans never believed that it would actually cause such an eruption.  It has been heartbreaking to watch Americans fighting Americans, and I wish that all of our politicians would come together and form a united front in calling for an end to the violence.  Instead, they just keep blaming one another, and things just continue to escalate.

And when I use the word “escalate”, I am not exaggerating one bit.  There are more than 100,000 gang members living in the city of Chicago today, and according to the FBI 30 gangs in the city “have made a pact” to shoot any police officer that draws his or her weapon in public…

A federal intelligence alert from the FBI field office in Chicago, Ill., warned that about 30 gangs in the city have made a pact to shoot police officers if they draw their weapons in public, ABC 7 reported on Monday.

Can you imagine what police officers in Chicago must be feeling right now?

I hope that they are well paid, because they are literally risking their lives on a nightly basis.  This new intelligence report specifically said that these gangs have agreed to “shoot on-sight” any officer that draws a weapon, and the purpose of this violent pact is “to garner national media attention”

The alert states that Chicago gangs have agreed to “shoot on-sight any cop that has a weapon drawn on any subject in public.”

“Members of these gang factions have been actively searching for, and filming, police officers in performance of their official duties,” the alert continues. “The purpose of which is to catch on film an officer drawing his/her weapon on any subject and the subsequent ‘shoot on-sight’ of said officer, in order to garner national media attention.”

Of course a lot of people have been shooting at Chicago police officers already.  According to Chicago police superintendent David Brown, the number of CPD police officers that have been shot at this year has already smashed the all-time yearly record

According to CPD Superintendent David Brown, there is an overall “sense of lawlessness” felt by local police, and the ‘danger to police officers is real and increasing.’

“I think it’s bigger than a suggestion,” said Brown. “I think 51 officers being shot at or shot in one year, I think that quadruples any previous year in Chicago’s history. So I think it’s more than a suggestion that people are seeking to do harm to cops.

It is so sad to watch Chicago descend into complete and utter lawlessness.

Each weekend, the violence in Chicago makes national headlines, and last weekend was no exception.  50 people got shot, and that included “a mass shooting at a pancake house”

Brown, now more than four months into his tenure, did not mention the grim milestone while talking to reporters. He also did not dwell on the toll from the weekend: at least 10 people killed and 40 others wounded by gun violence that included a mass shooting at a pancake house on the Far Southwest Side. A man died and four others were wounded as diners with children scattered.

In a little more than three hours beginning around 2 a.m. Sunday, Chicago police responded to 10 separate shootings, including three homicides and an attack on two officers who exchanged gunfire with an armed teen. All three were wounded.

In Portland, we are witnessing a different sort of chaos.

Political protests have been rocking the city on a nightly basis for three months straight, and on Monday night the protesters decided to target the mayor’s house

Protesters in Portland gathered outside Democrat mayor Ted Wheeler’s apartment Monday night to ‘celebrate’ his birthday by letting off fireworks and singing ‘happy tear gas to you’.

A fire was lit in the street outside the 58-year-old’s apartment block in an upmarket area in the north of the city, as around 200 people gathered while blasting music, sounding horns, banging pots and pans, and playing drums.

This is a perfect example that shows why the violence is not going to end no matter who wins the election in November.

Ted Wheeler is not a Republican.

He isn’t even a moderate Democrat.

In fact, he is one of the most far left mayors in the entire country.

But they targeted his home anyway.

As I detail in my new book, so many people warned us in advance that tremendous rioting, looting and violence would erupt in our major cities.  In some instances, these explosions of anger are being fueled by political unrest, but in other cases we are seeing acts of violence that are completely and utterly mindless.  A perfect example of this is an incident which just took place in Baltimore

Video emerged Monday on social media showing a man crossing a street and another man sneaking up behind him and slamming him in the back of the head, which resulted in the victim falling face-first to the sidewalk.

Just before the victim was hit in the head, a voice — presumably from one of the people recording the video across the street — can be heard whispering, “bitch you bet’ not run.” After the victim falls to the sidewalk, at least two people can be heard laughing and hollering in response.

Video of this deeply disturbing attack has been posted on Twitter, and watching it made me incredibly sad.

How evil do you have to be to celebrate when some random person is knocked unconscious by a brick to the head?

I truly wish that the entire country could come together and agree to bring an end to the violence.  But of course that isn’t going to happen.  If anything, societal tensions are likely to get even higher as we approach election day in November.

It should deeply grieve all of us when we see Americans fighting Americans.  There is so much anger and hatred all around us, and any nation that becomes utterly consumed by anger and hatred has no future.

Ultimately, what we really need is to learn how to truly love one another, but unfortunately that is not a very popular message at all these days.

TMIN: Everyone in America Needs to Be a Prepper in 2020

Michael Snyder at The Most Important News writes Why Every Person In America Needs To Become A Prepper During The Second Half Of 2020, citing what he sees as the events ahead.

It has been on my heart to write this article for a few days, but I knew that it wouldn’t be easy to write.  2020 has already been one of the worst years in modern U.S. history, and it looks like the next six months are going to be extremely challenging as well.  But even though most Americans are expecting that things will return to “normal” in 2021 and beyond, the truth is that the “perfect storm” that we are witnessing is only in the very early stages.  All of the old cycles are ending, all of the bubbles are bursting, and we are starting to experience the consequences of decades of incredibly foolish decisions.  So even though the remaining months of 2020 will be chaotic, the truth is that things are going to get progressively worse as the years move along.  That means that you should use this period of time to prepare for what is ahead of us, because at some point the window of opportunity to prepare will be closed for good.

COVID-19 should have been a wake up call for all of us.  Lockdowns were implemented very suddenly once the virus started to spread in the U.S., and shortages of key items began to happen.  To this day, many retailers are still limiting the number of items that you can buy in certain categories.  Hopefully this has helped people to understand that if you have not stocked up in advance, you may not be able to go out and get what you need when a major crisis strikes.

During the initial stages of this pandemic, a lot of people ended up being stuck at home without enough supplies.  In the event of a truly historic emergency, you can certainly survive without toilet paper, but if you run out of food you could find yourself in big trouble quite quickly.

The good news is that COVID-19 is not going to kill us all.  About half a million people around the world have died so far, and the final death toll will be a lot lower than the tens of millions that died during the Spanish Flu pandemic of 1918 to 1920.

But if our society was extremely ill-prepared for a pandemic of this nature, what is going to happen when a pandemic that is much more severe hits us?

Scientists assure us that it is just a matter of time before a killer plague sweeps across the planet, and the Bible tells us that there will be “pestilences” in the last days.  If you find yourself isolated at home for an extended period of time as millions of others are dying from a virus, will you be able to survive on what you have already stored up?

If not, you need to get to work.

Big economic problems are ahead as well.  So far in 2020, more than 47 million Americans have filed new claims for unemployment benefits, more than 100,000 businesses have permanently closed their doors, and it is being projected that U.S. GDP will decline by 46.6 percent on an annualized bases during the second quarter.  Those are absolutely disastrous numbers, but so far trillions of dollars of emergency government spending has helped to ease the pain.

But those emergency measures were only meant to get us through a few months, and it is now becoming clear that this new economic depression will be with us for a very long time to come.

Of course deteriorating economic conditions will fuel even more civil unrest.  We have seen rioting, looting, arson and violence in city after city, and much more civil unrest is on the horizon.

If you live in one of our major urban areas, you may want to move while you still can.  Due to a huge surge in demand, property prices in the most desirable small towns and rural areas are already starting to go through the roof.

On top of everything else, food shortages are starting to occur all over the globe.  According to the head of the UN, we are on the verge of seeing “unimaginable devastation and suffering around the world”…

The U.N. chief on Thursday warned the largest gathering of world leaders since the coronavirus pandemic began that it will cause “unimaginable devastation and suffering around the world,” with historic levels of hunger and famine and up to 1.6 billion people unable to earn a living unless action is taken now.

Giant swarms of locusts the size of major cities are devouring crops in Africa, the Middle East and Asia, African Swine Fever has already killed about one-fourth of all the pigs in the entire world, and crazy weather patterns have been playing havoc with crop production all over the planet.

And now on top of everything else COVID-19 is greatly disrupting food distribution systems all over the world.

We have never seen so many severe threats to global food production occur simultaneously, and the Bible clearly tells us that there will be “famine” in the last days.

Meanwhile, a major war could erupt in the Middle East at any moment.  Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said that he will begin the process of annexing portions of Judea and Samaria in July, and Israel’s Arab neighbors have promised a very forceful response if that actually happens.

The region has constantly been on the precipice of war for years, and this could potentially be the trigger that finally causes it to happen.

If everything that I have discussed so far wasn’t enough, the planet that we all live on is becoming increasingly unstable.  We have witnessed a number of very alarming earthquakes this week, and a truly catastrophic event could literally happen at any moment.

As my regular readers already know, I am particularly concerned about seismic activity on the west coast and about the potential for a historic earthquake along the New Madrid fault zone.

But even considering everything that I just shared with you, there is no other time in human history that I would have rather been alive than right now.

All of human history has been building up to this point, and we are so fortunate to be living during this moment.

However, it is going to be exceedingly difficult to thrive during the historic events that are ahead if you have not made any preparations for what is coming.

I realize that things may seem very chaotic now, but the truth is that this is your window of opportunity to prepare.

I would take full advantage of that opportunity, because the clock is ticking.

Liberty Blitzkrieg: We’re in the Thick of it Now

Michael Krieger of Liberty Blitzkrieg writes about recent rioting and government tyranny in We’re in the Thick of It Now – What Happens Next?

It’s with an extremely heavy heart that I sit down to write today’s post. Although widespread civil unrest was easy to predict, it doesn’t make the situation any less sad and dangerous. We’re in the thick of it now, and how we respond will likely determine the direction of the country for decades to come.

If the combination of peaceful protesting, looting and violence witnessed across American cities over the past few days completely caught you off guard, you’re likely to come to the worst possible conclusion about what to do next. The knee-jerk response I’m already seeing from many is to crush the dissent by all means necessary, but that’s exactly how you give the imperial state and oligarchy more power. Power it will never relinquish.

The pressure cooker situation that erupted over the weekend has been building for five decades, but really accelerated over the past twenty years. After every crisis of the 21st century there’s been this “do whatever it takes mentality,” which resulted in more wealth and power for the national security state and oligarchy, and less resources, opportunities and civil liberties for the many. If anything, it’s surprising it took so long to get here, partly a testament to how skilled a salesman for the power structure Obama was.

The covid-19 pandemic, related societal lockdown and another round of in your face economic looting by Congress and the Federal Reserve merely served as an accelerant, and the only thing missing was some sort of catalyst combined with warmer weather. Now that the eruption has occurred, I hope cooler heads can prevail on all sides.

On the one hand, you can’t pillage the public so blatantly and consistently for decades while telling them voting will change things and not expect violence once people realize it doesn’t. On the other hand, street violence plays perfectly into the hands of those who would take the current moment and use it to advocate for a further loss of civil liberties, more internal militarization, and the emergence of an overt domestic police state that’s been itching to fully manifest since 9/11.

It’s my view we need to take the current moment and admit the unrest is a symptom of a deeply entrenched and corrupt bipartisan imperial oligarchy that cares only about its own wealth and power. If people of goodwill across the ideological spectrum don’t take a step back and point out who the real looters are, nothing’s going to improve and we’ll put another bandaid on a systemic cancer as we continue our longstanding march toward less freedom and more authoritarianism.

While we aren’t going to solve everything at once, something should be done as soon as possible to at least partially address current anger and frustration.

Clearly there’s a major problem when it comes to policing in America, particularly in poor inner-city communities. Let’s start by ending qualified immunity.

Qualified immunity, created by the Supreme Court in the 1970s, shields police and other government officials from liability in civil rights lawsuits when the illegality of their actions was not “clearly established” at the time of the offense.

Attorneys representing the families of Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor called for policing reforms—including rolling back qualified immunity—at a press conference today…

While it may seem like George Floyd’s right to not be choked to death by a police officer would be rather obvious, the fuzzy phrase “clearly established” has evolved over time to become a pedantic and unforgiving standard. Plaintiffs are often required to go fishing for cases that match their exact circumstances, lest their lawsuit get tossed. Last year, a 9th Circuit Court of Appeals panel granted qualified immunity to an officer who, without warning, shot a 15-year-old holding an airsoft gun. 

Ending qualified immunity may seem like a small thing, but it’s an important step toward adding some accountability to those in positions of power. As it stands, power at all levels in our society largely operates above the law. This applies to politicians, national security state operatives, CEOs, Wall Street, the police, and of course, Jeffrey Epstein. Those in positions to do the most damage to society are simultaneously most immune from the consequences of their actions. This is a core systemic problem in our country, so let’s take a small step and start with qualified immunity for police officers while the opportunity exists. From there we can turn our attention to the bigger fish.

I understand my message will likely fall on deaf ears, and I’m used to things not going the way I want them to. I have no idea where society will go from here, but I know we’re at a key inflection point in our nation’s history. We can begin to turn this thing around, or we can go totally off the deep end. Try to be as creative, constructive and conscious as possible during these trying times.

See also Michael Snyder’s The Horrifying Civil Unrest We Have Been Warning You About Is Here, And America Is Literally Coming Apart At The Seams at TMIN.

For a very long time, many of us have been loudly warning the American people that this was coming.  The mainstream media and many of our national leaders have been fanning the flames of hatred, anger, frustration and division on a daily basis for many years, and it was just a matter of time before we witnessed an eruption of violence of this magnitude.  Over the last week, we have seen protests in at least 145 different U.S. cities, and reports of rioting, looting and violence are coming in so fast that it is literally impossible to keep up with them all.  So far, at least 40 U.S. cities have imposed curfews, the National Guard has been activated in at least 15 states, and at least 4,100 people have been arrested.  On Sunday night, the violence in Washington D.C. became so alarming that President Trump was actually rushed to a secret bunker under the White House

End of the American Dream Blog: Almost Everyone Is Wrong About This Coronavirus Pandemic

Michael Snyder of the End of the American Dream blog shares his thoughts on The Facts That Prove That Almost Everyone Is Wrong About This Coronavirus Pandemic. Mr. Snyder is mostly trying to point out in this piece that both the group saying that Covid-19 is nothing/a hoax/the flu/etc. and those thinking it is a pandemic holocaust are wrong and that the facts show something in between.

When it comes to COVID-19, most Americans seem to be gravitating toward one of two extremes.  Some are treating this pandemic like it is the end of the world, while many others are dismissing it as a “nothingburger”.  But the truth is somewhere in between.  Nobody can deny that lots of people are getting sick and lots of people are dying.  In fact, the U.S. death toll has doubled in a little over a week and it has now shot past the 47,000 mark.  And as this pandemic progresses, a lot more people are going to get sick and a lot more people are going to die, and this is going to be true whether the lockdowns continue or not.  The lockdowns were never going to stop COVID-19, and anyone that believed that was just being delusional.

 The only time a lockdown should be instituted is if a pandemic has gotten so bad in an area that hospitals are being absolutely overwhelmed, because if people can’t get treatment that is a factor that could potentially increase the overall death toll substantially.

In most of the United States that is not happening right now, and so in most of the nation the lockdowns should be immediately ended.

But won’t a lot more people start getting sick if that happens?

Of course, and this is something that the “nothingburger” crowd doesn’t understand.  Lifting the lockdowns is going to cause the virus to cycle through our population at a much faster rate, and the numbers will get pretty ugly.  But as long as the medical system can handle it, lockdowns are not necessary.

What “the end of the world” crowd does not understand is that when you are dealing with a virus that spreads as easily as this one, it is inevitable that most of the population will eventually become infected.  You can “flatten the curve” and delay the inevitable with lockdowns, but that also prolongs the pandemic.  In the end, roughly the same number of people will get sick and roughly the same number of people will die no matter how the pandemic is “managed”.

This week, the “nothingburger” crowd has made a really big deal out of the fact that a study conducted in L.A. county discovered that about 4 percent of all residents had already developed COVID-19 antibodies, and they were trying to use that study to prove that this pandemic is not much of a threat at all.

Actually, it shows just the opposite.

This pandemic is not going to be over until herd immunity is achieved, and according to Johns Hopkins that does not happen until 70 to 90 percent of a population has developed immunity…

When most of a population is immune to an infectious disease, this provides indirect protection—or herd immunity (also called herd protection)—to those who are not immune to the disease.

For example, if 80% of a population is immune to a virus, four out of every five people who encounter someone with the disease won’t get sick (and won’t spread the disease any further). In this way, the spread of infectious diseases is kept under control. Depending how contagious an infection is, usually 70% to 90% of a population needs immunity to achieve herd immunity.

So let’s do some really quick math.

Let’s assume that the study conducted in L.A. County is representative of the nation as a whole and that approximately 4 percent of all Americans have now developed antibodies.

And let’s also assume that herd immunity for COVID-19 will be achieved when 80 percent of the total population has developed antibodies.

If 47,000 Americans have died at the current 4 percent level of exposure, that means that we could potentially be looking at an overall death toll of 940,000 once we hit an 80 percent exposure level.

Does anyone in the “nothingburger” crowd want to try to claim that 940,000 dead Americans is not a big deal?

I keep hearing people say that this virus “is just like the flu”, and that is absolutely absurd…(continues)

Click here to read the entire article at the End of the American Dream blog.

End of American Dream Blog: Food Distribution System Breaks Down

Michael Snyder has written an article at The End of the American Dream on how the food distribution system works in normal times and why it is breaking down now – Supplies Are Starting To Get Really Tight Nationwide As Food Distribution Systems Break Down. His message is that times have changed. Don’t blame hoarders for bare grocery shelves; the problem is much bigger.

All across America, store shelves are emptying and people are becoming increasingly frustrated because they can’t get their hands on needed supplies.  Most Americans are blaming “hoarders” for the current mess, but it is actually much more complicated than that.  Normally, Americans get a lot of their food from restaurants.  In fact, during normal times 36 percent of all Americans eat at a fast food restaurant on any given day.  But now that approximately 75 percent of the U.S. is under some sort of a “shelter-in-place” order and most of our restaurants have shut down, things have completely changed.  Suddenly our grocery stores are being flooded with unexpected traffic, and many people are buying far more than usual in anticipation of a long pandemic.  Unfortunately, our food distribution systems were not designed to handle this sort of a surge, and things are really starting to get crazy out there.

 I would like to share with you an excerpt from an email that I was sent recently.  It describes the chaos that grocery stores in Utah and Idaho have been experiencing…

When this virus became a problem that we as a nation could see as an imminent threat, Utah, because of its culture of food storage and preparing for disaster events seemed to “get the memo” first. The week of March 8th grocery sales more than doubled in Utah, up 218%. Many states stayed the same with increases in some. Idaho seemed to “get the memo” about four days later. We were out of water and TP four days after Utah. Then we were out of food staples about four days later. Next was produce following a pattern set by Utah four days earlier.

The problem for us in Idaho was this. The stores in Utah were emptied out then refilled twice by the warehouses before it hit Idaho. Many of these Utah stores have trucks delivering daily. So when it did hit Idaho the warehouses had been severely taxed. We had a hard time filling our store back up even one time. We missed three scheduled trucks that week alone. Then orders finally came they were first 50% of the order and have dropped to 20%. In normal circumstances we receive 98% of our orders and no canceled trucks. Now three weeks later, the warehouses in the Western United States have all been taxed. In turn, those warehouses have been taxing the food manufacturers. These food companies have emptied their facilities to fill the warehouses of the Western United States. The East Coast hasn’t seemed to “get the memo” yet. When they do what food will be left to fill their warehouses and grocery stores?

Food distribution and resources for the Eastern United States will be at great peril even if no hoarding there takes place. But of course it will.

Additionally the food culture of the East Coast and other urban areas is such that people keep very little food on hand. They often shop several times weekly for items if they cook at home. They don’t have big freezers full of meat, home canned vegetables in their storage rooms, gardens, or beans, wheat, and rice in buckets in the their basements.

With most of the country locked down, normal economic activity has come to a standstill, and it is going to become increasingly difficult for our warehouses to meet the demand that grocery stores are putting on them.

Meanwhile, our farmers are facing severe problems of their own.  The following comes from CNBC

The U.S.-China trade war sent scores of farmers out of business. Record flooding inundated farmland and destroyed harvests. And a blistering heat wave stunted crop growth in the Midwest.

Now, the coronavirus pandemic has dealt another blow to a vulnerable farm economy, sending crop and livestock prices tumbling and raising concerns about sudden labor shortages.

The chaos in the financial markets is likely to continue for the foreseeable future, and it is going to remain difficult for farm laborers to move around as long as “shelter-in-place” orders remain in effect on the state level.

Iowa farmer Robb Ewoldt told reporter Emma Newburger that “we’ve stopped saying it can’t get worse”, and he says that this coronavirus pandemic looks like it could be “the straw that broke the camel’s back”

“We were already under extreme financial pressure. With the virus sending the prices down — it’s getting to be the straw that broke the camel’s back,” said Iowa farmer Robb Ewoldt.

“We were hoping for something good this year, but this virus has stopped all our markets,” he said.

Of course this comes at a time when millions of Americans are losing their jobs and unemployment is shooting up to unthinkable levels.  Without any money coming in, many people are already turning to alternative sources of help in order to feed themselves and their families.

On Monday, hundreds of cars were lined up to get food from a food bank in Duquesne, Pennsylvania.  To many, this was eerily reminiscent of the “bread lines” during the Great Depression of the 1930s.

And it is also being reported that the number of people coming for free meals on Skid Row in Los Angeles has tripled since that city was locked down.

Sadly, these examples are likely only the tip of the iceberg of what we will see in the months ahead.

And it won’t just be the U.S. that is hurting.  The following comes from a Guardian article entitled “Coronavirus measures could cause global food shortage, UN warns”

Kazakhstan, for instance, according to a report from Bloomberg, has banned exports of wheat flour, of which it is one of the world’s biggest sources, as well as restrictions on buckwheat and vegetables including onions, carrots and potatoes. Vietnam, the world’s third biggest rice exporter, has temporarily suspended rice export contracts. Russia, the world’s biggest wheat exporter, may also threaten to restrict exports, as it has done before, and the position of the US is in doubt given Donald Trump’s eagerness for a trade war in other commodities.

If this pandemic stretches on for an extended period of time, food supplies are inevitably going to get even tighter.

So what can you do?

Well, perhaps you can start a garden this year if you don’t normally grow one.  Apparently this pandemic has sparked a tremendous amount of interest in gardening programs around the country…

Because of the coronavirus pandemic, more people are showing an interest in starting home gardens. Oregon State University‘s (OSU) Master Gardener program took notice of the growing interest.

To help citizens who want to grow their own food, the university kindly made their online vegetable gardening course free until the end of April. OSU’s post on Facebook has been shared over 21,000 times.

Food is only going to get more expensive from here on out, and growing your own food is a way to become more independent of the system.

But if you don’t have any seeds right now, you may want to hurry, because consumer demand is spiking

“It’s the largest volume of orders we have seen,” said Jere Gettle of Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds in Mansfield, Missouri. Peak seed-buying season for home gardeners is January to March, but the normal end-of-season decline in orders isn’t happening.

Customers are gravitating to vegetables high in nutrients, such as kale, spinach and other quick-to-grow leafy greens. “Spinach is off the charts,” said Jo-Anne van den Berg-Ohms of Kitchen Garden Seeds in Bantam, Connecticut.

For years, I have been warning people to get prepared for “the perfect storm” that was coming, but of course most people didn’t listen.

But now it is upon us.

Desperate people have been running out to the grocery stores to stock up on toilet paper only to find that they are limited to one or two packages if it is even available.

And now that “panic buying” of seeds has begun, it is probably only a matter of time before many stores start running out.

We have reached a major turning point in our history, and things are only going to get crazier.

Unfortunately, the vast majority of Americans still have absolutely no idea what is ahead of us…

Related:

The Organic Prepper: It’s Only a Matter of Time Until COVID-19 Lockdowns Lead to Civil Unrest and Violent Crime

…A lot of people are blaming “hoarders” and preppers for the shortages seen in stores. Of course, it’s nonsense to blame preppers because we’ve been buying our things over a course of years. And honestly, if it was only “panic buyers” causing problems, wouldn’t the stores be replenished by now? After all, people have hardly been able to shop for two weeks in many states due to social distancing measures.

In reality, there are major issues with the supply chain, a problem many folks aren’t seeing because they’re not at the store. Distribution systems are breaking down.

A source at a Walmart Superstore recently confided that the trucks were only delivering a fraction of the items needed to restock shelves. Imports aren’t arriving in California ports, at least not anywhere close to the degree they were before.

And because more people are eating at home than ever before, the demand on grocery stores has increased dramatically. This also comes at a time after farmers have been driven out of business by the trade war. (source) We have actual shortages here, and it isn’t just due to “panic buying.” That only exposed the dangers of the Just In Time delivery philosophy used by retailers.

Some folks are reporting that the shelves in their areas are full, but many others are reporting the exact opposite