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Survival+: Structuring Prosperity for Yourself and the Nation Paperback – October 30, 2009
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Top Customer Reviews
I bought it because of a recommendation and because the reviews on amazon were good. Initially I thought I was on to something big, but then I began noticing the inconsistencies, sloppiness and redundancy.
Readers are warned to "be skeptical of any `natural laws' which are being applied to human culture and history" (83), after which they are oriented to our present world through a long discussion of just such "natural laws." E.g., "If we apply the Stick/Slip hypothesis to the global economy then we understand that ... [etc., and] .... If history or the Peter Principle is any guide we will not do this consciously or voluntarily because we are incapable due to incompetence" (87).
A fairly large number of typos suggest the book was carelessly edited.
Utterly banal observations like the following are common: "A free people will want control of their own lives, sustenance and destiny" (322).
General statements of questionable validity abound: "humans tend to fill every available niche to the maximum carrying capacity (123) ... States tend to expand whenever the opportunity presents itself as the spoils of conquest ... outweigh the costs (124)."
Thumbnail comparisons of today with the 13th, 16th and 18th centuries (128) are glib and superficial.
Many of the author's claims just don't strike me as accurate. For instance, regarding the intellectual framework of Elite dominance, "this process of gaining compliance is not a conspiracy; it is a complex mixture of conscious and unconscious realignments of incentives and disincentives (27).Read more ›
Smith warns his readers that "we face not some isolated, temporary `financial crisis' or even a political crisis, but an interconnected, self-reinforcing series of crises and challenges which span every level of modern life, from the internal politics of experience to depleting resources to degraded environment to financial and political domination by Elites of capital and State and on to demographics and the host of ills triggered by over-reach." He forsees collapse but not apocalypse. He is hopeful that survivors will learn lessons from the experience--lessons that he painstakingly elucidates--and fashion "a new model of governance to replace the failed Savior State/Plutocracy partnership." This is, after all, a book of "survival." No, even better than that. "Survival Plus.Read more ›
Despite this book containing "Survival" in the title, it should not be considered in the same vein as all the other books on how to stockpile canned food and shotguns. Smith does not address those menial topics. His book is a "how to think" manual. Considering "mindset" is often cited as the most important aspect of "survival" by some other authors in the survival genre, Smith is the only one to have fully nailed it. Smith encourages the reader to think about a fully possible sustainable human future well within our reach without resorting to the safety of the usual sandbags filled with fear.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is another great book by Charles Hugh Smith that is so jammed packed full of nuggets of wisdom it will take some time to digest and apply.Published 7 months ago by Roebear
poop get the chance to see if we can go out and about to get a whole new world of possibilities for you guys
yeah I'm sure you are going to be a little more interested... Read more
This book provides an excellent complete overview of Charles Hugh Smith's blog thoughts and potential go forward planning as to how the worlld is changing.Published on May 15, 2013 by G. Baschiera
This book is the best and most insightful book I read on this topic. Well structures, many good examples of what is wrong and how it got to that point. Read morePublished on December 12, 2012 by M. Schoch
This is not your casual nighttime reading. It reads more like a textbook from college than anything else, so be prepared to concentrate. Read morePublished on August 20, 2012 by Jeffrey Myers
Charles Hugh Smith has written a survival book that's far better than most for seeing us through this economic depression confronting us. Read morePublished on July 5, 2011 by Bryan Kavanagh
This is an exceptional account of what is wrong with current western economic process, how we are decieived, and how few non-elites might create meaningful movement back to more... Read morePublished on June 14, 2011 by concobb2
The author concludes that our economy is almost certainly going down. There is a detailed discussion about the numerous why's, and more importantly What we can do about it. Read morePublished on May 21, 2011 by freedd
I wouldn't buy this book again. The book is hard to read--mostly because of the excessive use of parenthesis. The formatting is poor. Read morePublished on January 9, 2011 by Survivor Type