“It’s A Disaster Like I’ve Never Seen Before”: 2019 Could Be The Worst Year EVER For U.S. Corn Farmers

The amount of corn produced in the United States this year is going to be way below expectations. The Department of Agriculture just slashed its harvest estimates quite dramatically in its June report, but some farmers in the Midwest believe that those reduced projections are still way too optimistic. As I have previously detailed, millions upon millions of acres will go unplanted this year, but that is only part of the story. Much of the corn that has actually been planted is coming up very slowly due to the exceedingly poor conditions, and corn farmers all over the Midwest are reporting that their plants look absolutely terrible. If we get picture perfect weather between now and harvest time, this will simply be a terrible year. But if severe heat and/or an early frost hits the Midwest, this could very easily be the worst year that we have ever seen for corn farmers in the United States.

The other day, Illinois farmer James McCune gathered a large number of his fellow corn farmers for a “Prevent Plant Party”, and the mainstream media showed up to cover it. The following is from CNBC’s coverage of the event

James McCune, a farmer from Mineral, Illinois, was unable to plant 85% of his intended corn acres and wanted to commiserate with his fellow farmers by hosting the “Prevent Plant Party” at The Happy Spot. He invited them to swap stories while tucking in to fried chicken and a keg of beer in Deer Grove, a village of about 50 people located 120 miles west of Chicago.

“Everybody’s so down in the dumps,” McCune said.

In addition, McCune told Fox Business that this year is “a disaster like I’ve never seen before”, and he said that some of his neighbors got even less corn planted than he did…

“It’s a disaster like I’ve never seen before,” McCune told FOX Business. “My neighbors didn’t get 90 percent of their corn planted.”

After non-stop rain plagued the region this spring – when corn farmers typically get seed in the ground – most have decided time is now too short and are choosing not to plant.

As bad as things are in Illinois right now, the truth is that some neighboring states are in even worse shape.

According to the latest Department of Agriculture report, 73 percent of the cornfields in Illinois have been planted, but in Indiana that figure is sitting at just 67 percent and in Ohio only 50 percent of the fields have been planted.

50 percent.

That is an unmitigated disaster, because the time for planting corn has now passed.

Needless to say, the farmers that were not able to plant crops have been absolutely flooding their insurance companies with claims. Just check out this quote

“We get pockets of claims every year,” said Luke Sandrock of the Cornerstone Agency insurance company. “We have 1-2 percent of our clients (who typically file). This year, it’s over 90 percent, and so we’ve just never dealt with it on this size of a scale before.”

But it is imperative to remember that even if farmers were able to get their fields planted, that does not mean that everything is going to be okay.

In fact, corn farmers all over the Midwest are deeply distressed by what is emerging from the ground. In his entire farming career, James McCune has never seen anything like this

A smartphone could fit in the space between James McCune’s index finger and thumb as the Illinois farmer describes the height of crops stunted by incessant rain and unseasonably cool weather.

“Corn’s not supposed to be this tall” in mid-June, McCune, who can trace his family’s farm roots as far back as 1857, said. “It’s supposed to be this tall,” as he gestures just below his waist.

And farmer Rob Sharkey used the word “ugly” to describe the condition of the corn on his farm

“We planted some stuff that was not pretty,” said corn farmer Rob Sharkey. “But I didn’t have a choice. We did not get conditions that were right for planting, so we went when we could. It’s ugly.”

We’ll see what happens, but right now we are facing an unprecedented nightmare in the heartland of America.

It is exceedingly difficult to grow corn in soil that is absolutely saturated with water. Some farmers are saying that it is literally going to take “years” to recover from this disaster, and many will never be able to go back to farming again because they have been financially ruined.

Of course there are many farmers that are doing their very best to soldier on, but it is tough. Illinois farmer Mike Thacker was able to get 60 percent of his fields planted, but at this point he is not happy with a single field

Mike Thacker, a farmer in Walnut, Illinois, planted about 1,600 acres of corn, or 60% of what he planned. He is reluctant to plant more because yields typically decline the later a crop is planted.

Thacker said corn that has started emerging from the ground is shorter than normal. He was not happy with even one field.

“It makes you feel terrible,” Thacker said at the party.

But like I said earlier, if the weather is ideal between now and harvest time, 2019 will just be a terrible year.

However, a major heat wave this summer would be absolutely catastrophic, and if there is an early frost it “will turn this world upside down”

Farmers think more cuts are likely as the late-planted crop could face damage from hot summer weather and an autumn frost.

“An early frost will turn this world upside down,” Rock Katschnig, a farmer from Prophetstown, Illinois, said at the party.

So much of the corn that has been planted is way, way behind schedule, and so many Midwest farmers will push things for as long as possible when we get to harvest time.

But an early snap of cold weather could ruin those plans.

In any event, in the short-term U.S. consumers are going to be facing significantly higher prices at the grocery store. Beyond that, we could potentially be facing the sorts of scenarios that most people don’t like to think about.

For the moment, more rain continues to hammer the middle of the country. In fact, there was more flash flooding in the Midwest on Saturday

The combination of two different frontal boundaries caused severe weather and flash flooding in parts of the Plains and Midwest on Saturday. There were over 130 reports of severe weather, including 17 reported tornadoes and numerous reports of straight-line winds of 70 to 80 mph across parts of Texas and Oklahoma.

Sadly, even more “heavy rain” is on the way, and some areas could see over 4 inches of precipitation early in the week…

Heavy rain is expected through Tuesday from Texas to Pennsylvania, with locally over 4 inches of rain expected and flash flooding in spots — especially parts of hard-hit Oklahoma and Arkansas.

I have been repeatedly writing about this crisis for the last couple of months, and now the mainstream media is finally starting to grasp the true gravity of this disaster.

In all of U.S. history we have never witnessed anything like this ever before. We have seen endless rain and catastrophic flooding month after month so far in 2019, and the middle of the country is still getting pummeled at this moment.

Nobody knows exactly what the weather will look like during the critical summer months, but I have a feeling that the end result of this crisis will be far worse than any of the “experts” were anticipating.

About the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

Crop Catastrophe In The Midwest – Latest USDA Crop Progress Report Indicates That A Nightmare Scenario Is Upon Us

The last 12 months have been the wettest in all of U.S. history, and this has created absolutely horrific conditions for U.S. farmers. Thanks to endless rain and historic flooding that has stretched on for months, many farmers have not been able to plant crops at all, and a lot of the crops that have actually been planted are deeply struggling. What this means is that U.S. agricultural production is going to be way, way down this year. The numbers that I am about to share with you are deeply alarming, and they should serve as a wake up call for all of us. The food that each one of us eats every day is produced by our farmers, and right now our farmers are truly facing a nightmare scenario.

You can view the latest USDA crop progress report right here. According to that report, corn and soybean production is way behind expectations.

Last year, 78 percent of all corn acreage had been planted by now. This year, that number is sitting at just 49 percent.

And the percentage of corn that has emerged from the ground is at a paltry 19 percent compared to 47 percent at this time last year.

We see similar numbers when we look at soybeans.

Last year, 53 percent of all soybean acreage had been planted by now. This year, that number has fallen to 19 percent.

And the percentage of soybeans that have emerged from the ground is just 5 percent compared to 24 percent at this time last year.

In other words, we are going to have a whole lot less corn and soybeans this year.

Farmers in the middle of the country desperately need conditions to dry out for an extended period of time, but so far that has not happened.

In fact, last week the heartland was hit by yet another string of devastating storms. The following comes from CNN

Ten people are dead and a 4 year-old boy remains missing after more than a week of severe weather across the central US that put tens of millions of people at risk.

The deadly spring storm system ravaged several states, unleashing more than 170 reported tornadoes, fierce winds, drenching rain, flash flooding and hail.

One of the tornadoes that was spawned absolutely devastated the capital city of Missouri. It was reportedly a mile wide, and it stayed on the ground for almost 20 miles

A clearer picture emerged Friday of the size and scope of the powerful tornadoes that tore across Missouri on Wednesday night, leaving a trail of destruction in their paths. The state’s capital, Jefferson City, was among the hardest-hit places, struck overnight by a tornado with a peak wind speed of 160 mph that has been given preliminary rating of EF3.

The monstrous nighttime tornado that struck Jefferson City, a city with a population of about 42,000, was almost a mile wide and was on the ground for nearly 20 miles, toppling homes, ripping roofs off homes and business below.

What we are witnessing is definitely not “normal”, and I have had a number of readers write to me about this recently. The other day one of my readers in Montana sent me a photograph of a freak May snowstorm that had just hit his area, and another one of my readers in Missouri explained that his boss is freaking out because they haven’t been able to get soybeans in the ground. All over the country people want answers, and they are frustrated with the lack of information that they are getting from the mainstream media.

Unfortunately, the truth is that things are going to get worse. Global weather patterns are dramatically shifting, and there is nothing that the authorities will be able to do to stop it from happening.

And it isn’t just in the United States where we are seeing widespread crop failures. I would encourage you to check out my previous article entitled “Floods And Drought Devastate Crops All Over The Planet – Could A Global Food Crisis Be Coming?” In that article I discussed the fact that Australia will actually be importing lots of wheat this year, but normally it is one of the largest exporters of wheat in the entire world. As crops fail all over the globe, there will be a scramble for food, and the wealthy western nations have more money than anyone else.

Over in Asia, the biggest problem right now is African Swine Flu. Earlier today, I came across a CNBC article which stated that “up to 200 million Chinese pigs” may have already been lost to this nightmarish disease…

A trade fight with the U.S. isn’t the only war China is fighting. African swine flu has decimated the pig population in China and sent pork prices soaring. As many as up to 200 million Chinese pigs have reportedly been lost due to the disease.

Now, Wall Street analysts are scrambling to assess the fallout from the fast spreading illness and how to invest around it.

The entire U.S. pork industry does not even produce 200 million pigs in an entire year.

So another way of looking at this is that the equivalent of what the entire U.S. pork industry produces in an entire year has just been wiped out.

And now African Swine Flu has spread to other countries such as Vietnam and Cambodia, and so this pandemic could soon become a true global cataclysm.

We have never seen so many massive threats hit the global food supply simultaneously, and if this article deeply alarms you that is a good thing.

A perfect storm is rapidly developing, and many expect global events to start accelerating dramatically.

Get Prepared NowAbout the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

Total Catastrophe For U.S. Corn Production: Only 30% Of U.S. Corn Fields Have Been Planted – 5 Year Average Is 66%

2019 is turning out to be a nightmare that never ends for the agriculture industry. Thanks to endless rain and unprecedented flooding, fields all over the middle part of the country are absolutely soaked right now, and this has prevented many farmers from getting their crops in the ground. I knew that this was a problem, but when I heard that only 30 percent of U.S. corn fields had been planted as of Sunday, I had a really hard time believing it. But it turns out that number is 100 percent accurate. And at this point corn farmers are up against a wall because crop insurance final planting dates have either already passed or are coming up very quickly. In addition, for every day after May 15th that corn is not in the ground, farmers lose approximately 2 percent of their yield. Unfortunately, more rain is on the way, and it looks like thousands of corn farmers will not be able to plant corn at all this year. It is no exaggeration to say that what we are facing is a true national catastrophe.

According to the Department of Agriculture, over the past five years an average of 66 percent of all corn fields were already planted by now…

U.S. farmers seeded 30% of the U.S. 2019 corn crop by Sunday, the government said, lagging the five-year average of 66%. The soybean crop was 9% planted, behind the five-year average of 29%.

Soybean farmers have more time to recover, but they are facing a unique problem of their own which we will talk about later in the article.

But first, let’s take a look at the corn planting numbers from some of our most important corn producing states. I think that you will agree that these numbers are almost too crazy to believe…

Iowa: 48 percent planted – 5 year average 76 percent

Minnesota: 21 percent planted – 5 year average 65 percent

North Dakota: 11 percent planted – 5 year average 43 percent

South Dakota: 4 percent planted – 5 year average 54 percent

Yes, you read those numbers correctly.

Can you imagine what this is going to do to food prices?

Many farmers are extremely eager to plant crops, but the wet conditions have made it impossible. The following comes from ABC 7 Chicago

McNeill grows corn and soybeans on more than 500 acres in Grayslake. But much of his farmland is underwater right now, and all of it is too wet to plant. Rain is a farmer’s friend in the summer but in the spring too much rain keeps farmers from planting.

The unusually wet spring has affected farmers throughout the Midwest, but Illinois has been especially hard hit. Experts say with the soil so wet, heavy and cold, it takes the air out and washes nutrients away, making it difficult if not impossible for seeds to take root.

Right now, soil moisture levels in the state of Illinois “are in the 90th to 99th percentile statewide”. In other words, the entire state is completely and utterly drenched.

As a result, very few Illinois farmers have been able to get corn or soybeans in the ground at this point

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s crop progress reports, about 11% of Illinois corn has been planted and about 4% of soybeans. Last year at this time, 88% of corn and 56% of soybeans were in the ground.

I would use the word “catastrophe” to describe what Illinois farmers are facing, but the truth is that what they are going through is far beyond that.

Normally, if corn farmers have a problem getting corn in the ground then they just switch to soybeans instead. But thanks to the trade war, soybean exports have plummeted dramatically, and the price of soybeans is the lowest that it has been in a decade.

As a result there is very little profit, if any, in growing soybeans this year

Farmers in many parts of the corn belt have suffered from a wet and cooler spring, which has prevented them from planting corn. Typically when it becomes too late to plant corn, farmers will instead plant soybeans, which can grow later into the fall before harvest is required. Yet now, planting soybeans with the overabundance already in bins and scant hope for sales to one of the biggest buyers in China, could raise the risk of a financial disaster.

And if the wet conditions persist, many soybean farms are not going to be able to plant crops at all this year.

Sadly, global weather patterns are continuing to go haywire, and much more rain is coming to the middle of the country starting on Friday

Any hopes of getting corn and soybean planting back on track in the U.S. may be washed away starting Friday as a pair of storms threaten to deliver a “one-two punch” of soaking rain and tornadoes across the Great Plains and Midwest through next week.

As much as 3 to 5 inches (8 to 13 centimeters) of rain will soak soils from South Dakota and Minnesota south to Texas, Oklahoma and Arkansas, according to the U.S. Weather Prediction Center in College Park, Maryland.

We have never had a year quite like this before, and U.S. food production is going to be substantially below expectations. I very much encourage everyone to get prepared for much higher food prices and a tremendous amount of uncertainty in the months ahead.

Even though I have been regularly documenting the nightmarish agricultural conditions in the middle of the country, the numbers in this article are much worse than I thought they would be at this point in 2019.

This is truly a major national crisis, and it is just getting started.

Get Prepared NowAbout the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

Investors Brace For Impact As The Cancer That Is Ravaging “The Real Economy” Starts To Spread

2019 sure has been a weird year so far. On Wall Street, everything has been coming up roses for investors up to this point. Stock prices have risen more than 10 percent year-to-date, and the horrible crashes of late last year are quickly fading from memory. Meanwhile, the real economy is literally falling to pieces right in front of our eyes. Debt delinquencies are at unprecedented levels, bankruptcies are soaring, retail stores are closing at a record pace, this is the worst economy for farmers since the early 1980s, exports are plummeting and a brand new real estate crisis has now begun. Economic cancer is rapidly spreading throughout our country, and the U.S. economy is deteriorating at the fastest pace that we have seen since the last recession. So how long will it be before Wall Street catches up with economic reality?

The retail industry is being hit particularly hard. At the end of last week, major retailers announced 465 store closings in a single 48 hour period…

The ‘retail apocalypse’ is alive and well this week with major chains such as Gap, JCPenney, Victoria’s Secret and Foot Locker all announcing massive closures, totalling the death of more than 465 stores over the last 48 hours.

And those closings already bring the grand total for 2019 to “a whopping 4,309 store closures”

That builds on recent store closure announcements by Gymboree, Payless ShoeSource, Charlotte Russe and Ann Taylor parent company Ascena Retail, to name a few. A whopping 4,309 store closures were announced by retailers just in the first two months of this year, Coresight Research said in a research note on Friday. That’s well ahead of the number of announcements the market research firm was tracking this same time a year ago, it said.

The term “retail apocalypse” is being thrown around so frequently these days that it has almost lost its meaning, but the worst is yet to come.

Meanwhile, layoffs are starting to come fast and furious now. For example, I was recently made aware of major job cuts that just happened in North Carolina

Duke Energy Corp. eliminated 1,900 positions in its latest round of job reductions, largely through voluntary buyouts but with some involuntary layoffs included.

For the first time since the last recession, I think that it is time to start visiting sites like Daily Job Cuts on a regular basis once again. Millions of Americans lost their jobs in 2008 and 2009, and a lot of you can still remember how painful that was.

In the middle of the country, the big news is “the farm apocalypse”. Last week, we learned that farm debt has now jumped 30 percent since 2013…

“Farm debt has been rising more rapidly over the last five years, increasing by 30% since 2013 – up from $315 billion to $409 billion, according to USDA data, and up from $385 billion in just the last year – to levels seen in the 1980s,” Perdue said in his testimony to the House Agriculture Committee.

As a result of this giant mountain of debt, a ton of small and mid-size farms are going under. As I noted the other day, farm debt delinquencies have now reached the highest level that we have witnessed in 9 years.

I really, really don’t understand the people that are telling us that everything is going to be okay.

Everything is not okay, and things are getting worse with each passing day. ISM’s manufacturing survey just hit the lowest level in 26 months, and for a whole bunch more extremely ominous economic numbers please see my previous article entitled “18 Really Big Numbers That Show That The U.S. Economy Is Starting To Fall Apart Very Rapidly”.

Of course it isn’t just the U.S. that is hurting. Up north, Canada is literally teetering on the brink of recession

The Canadian government shocked the professional financial and economic media with their latest fourth quarter GDP release showing the economy has essentially come to a grinding halt at 0.1% growth.

And over in Europe, things are arguably even worse. Germany is supposed to have the strongest economy in the entire region, but they are also right on the brink of recession

The country’s economy just escaped entering recession territory last month, with GDP growing at just zero percent following a 0.4 percent contraction in the previous three-month period. But Germany could be just weeks away from a recession-threatening double whammy as a potential no-deal Brexit and Donald Trump’s warning to hike car tariffs by up to 25 percent could send the economy tumbling. Chancellor Angela Merkel’s ministers have entered into a frantic plan to avert an economic catastrophe which could end Europe’s biggest economy’s golden growth for a decade.

This is a global economic slowdown, and many believe that it will be even worse than what we experienced in 2008.

But as I have previously warned, we aren’t just heading toward an economic storm. Everything that can be shaken will be shaken, and that includes our governmental institutions.

On Sunday, we learned that the House Judiciary Committee is opening an investigation into obstruction of justice by President Trump. The following comes from Reuters

The House Judiciary Committee will seek documents from more than 60 people and organizations as it begins investigations into possible obstruction of justice and abuse of power by President Donald Trump, the panel’s chairman said on Sunday.

Committee Chairman Jerrold Nadler told ABC’s “This Week” the panel wanted documents from the Department of Justice, the president’s son Donald Trump Jr. and Trump Organization chief financial officer Allen Weisselberg, among others.

This is going to be a year of great governmental shaking. And no matter which side emerges victorious from the legal struggles and from the election of 2020, the truth is that our governmental institutions will never be the same again.

From 2016 through 2018, America experienced a time of relative peace and prosperity, and a lot of people out there were convinced that this bubble of unsustainable false prosperity could continue indefinitely.

Now it is becoming very clear what is ahead of us, and a lot of people are starting to freak out.

Get Prepared NowAbout the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

“An Unavoidable Global Recession”: The Warnings Get Louder As Worldwide Economic Numbers Continue To Deteriorate

Economic numbers all over the world continue to get worse, and as you will see below, even New York Times columnist Paul Krugman is now warning of “an unavoidable global recession”. Unfortunately, most Americans still have absolutely no idea that this is happening. Most ordinary citizens are still under the impression that everything is going to be just fine, but the numbers suggest otherwise. The Baltic Dry Index just plummeted to the lowest level that we have seen in three years, and this is yet another indication that the global trade war is causing widespread economic pain. And according to Bloomberg, global economic growth has now dropped to the lowest level that we have seen since the Great Recession…

The global economy’s loss of momentum has left expansion now looking like its weakest since the global financial crisis, a development that’s already sparked a dramatic shift among central banks.

A UBS model suggests world growth slowed to a 2.1 percent annualized pace at the end of 2018, which it says would be the weakest since 2008-2009.

Unfortunately, it appears that things are getting even worse during the first few months of 2019. In North America, Europe and Asia, signs of a major downturn are seemingly everywhere

Unfortunately, there hasn’t been much sign of that. China car sales dropped in January, and data last week showed U.S. retail sales posted their worst drop in nine years in December. In Europe, where the slowdown has been particularly marked, sentiment indicators continue to weaken, and the latest OECD leading indicator has also declined.

The numbers coming out of China are particularly striking. Experts were stunned this week when it was announced that Chinese car sales had plunged 17.7 percent

Car sales in China continued to decline in January after their first full-year slump in more than two decades, adding to pressure on automakers who bet heavily on the market amid waning demand for cars from the U.S. to Europe.

Passenger vehicle wholesales fell 17.7 percent year-on-year, the biggest drop since the market began to contract in the middle of last year, while retail sales had their eighth consecutive monthly decline, industry groups reported Monday.

That is an absolutely disastrous number, and it is a sign that this will be a very, very tough year for the global auto industry.

Meanwhile, German industrial production is falling at a pace that we haven’t seen since the last global recession

“Unexpectedly,” German industrial production fell 3.9% in December 2018 compared to December 2017, after having fallen by a revised 4.0% in November, according to German statistics agency Destatis Thursday morning. These two drops were steepest year-over-year drops since 2009.

Even during the European Debt Crisis in 2011 and 2012 – it hit Germany’s industry hard as many European countries weaved in and out of a recession, with some countries sinking into a depression — German industrial production never fell as fast on a year-over-year basis as in November and December

But as bad as things are in Germany, they are even worse in Italy.

Italy’s economy has already fallen into a recession, and their debt problems continue to grow with each passing day.

Watch Italy, because it is going to be a key to the drama that is currently unfolding in Europe.

Here in the United States, we are still doing relatively better than much of the rest of the world, but our economy is slowing down too. U.S. retail sales just suffered their “biggest drop in more than nine years”, and the stunning bankruptcy and liquidation of Payless ShoeSource has made front page news all over the nation

Payless ShoeSource confirmed Friday that it will close its 2,100 stores in the U.S. and Puerto Rico and start liquidation sales Sunday. The company is also shuttering its e-commerce operations.

The closings mark the biggest by a single chain this year and nearly doubles the number of retail stores set to close in 2019.

So what does all of this mean?

What all of this means is that this is the beginning of the end for the global economic bubble. It is time to start getting serious about the economy again, and it is time to get prepared for the tough years that are ahead.

At this point, even the most clueless pundits in the mainstream media can see what is coming. For example, New York Times columnist Paul Krugman is now warning that we are heading for “an unavoidable global recession” either at the end of this year or the beginning of next year

Professor Paul Krugman has warned a series of isolated downward economic trends around the world will spiral into an unavoidable global recession towards the end of 2019 or the beginning of next year. Mr Krugman said there is not “one big thing” prompting the stark forecast but instead blamed a number of incidents happening at the same time. He said a slump in the eurozone combined with the long-running US-China trade war, President Trump’s tax policy and world leaders’ lack of preparedness are increasing the risks of a worldwide economic slowdown.

If even Paul Krugman can see what is happening, then you know that time is short.

Prior to the Great Recession of 2008 and 2009, most people never would have imagined that we were about to enter a terrible global economic downturn. Here in the U.S., it seemed like the economy was buzzing along quite nicely, and the vast majority of us had absolutely no idea what was really going on behind the scenes.

Similarly, right now most of us are conducting our lives as if nothing is going to change. To most people, the system seems to be functioning normally and there appears to be no cause for alarm.

Unfortunately, things are not that simple.

Rubber bands can keep stretching for quite a while, but if you put too much pressure on them they will eventually snap. At this point there is an enormous amount of pressure on our global economic bubble, and someday it will “snap” too.

It is just a matter of time.

Get Prepared NowAbout the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

Trade War Causing Severe Pain As Farm Bankruptcies Surge Way Past The Level From The Last Recession

Farmers all across the middle part of the country are going bankrupt at an astounding rate, and over half of all farms in America are now losing money. The trade war with China has been the most devastating crisis to hit the U.S. farming community in decades, and at this point there is no end in sight. Farm after farm is being financially wiped out, and we haven’t seen this kind of economic pain for farmers since the Great Depression of the 1930s. In fact, it is being reported that bankruptcies in the key farming regions of the country are way above the level that we witnessed during the last recession. The following comes from Zero Hedge

Bankruptcies in three regions covering major farm states last year rose to the highest level in at least 10 years. The Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals, which includes Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin, had double the bankruptcies in 2018 compared with 2008. In the Eighth Circuit, which includes states from North Dakota to Arkansas, bankruptcies swelled 96%. The 10th Circuit, which covers Kansas and other states, last year had 59% more bankruptcies than a decade earlier.

There has been a lot of debate about whether or not the U.S. economy as a whole is heading into a recession in the near future, but the farming industry is already very, very deep into a major downturn, and this downturn has been caused by the trade war

Trade disputes under the Trump administration with major buyers of U.S. farm goods, such as China and Mexico, have further roiled agricultural markets and pressured farmers’ incomes. Prices for soybeans and hogs plummeted after those countries retaliated against U.S. steel and aluminum tariffs by imposing duties on U.S. products like oilseeds and pork, slashing shipments to big buyers.

Low milk prices are driving dairy farmers out of business in a market that’s also struggling with retaliatory tariffs on U.S. cheese from Mexico and China. Tariffs on U.S. pork have helped contribute to a record buildup in U.S. meat supplies, leading to lower prices for beef and chicken.

In addition, it is also being reported that more than half of all U.S. farms are now losing money even though they continue to operate. Needless to say, this is not sustainable, and many more farms will go out of business if this current crisis persists.

This could be the final nail in the coffin for America’s family farms. After this crisis is over, if it ever actually ends, we may be left with only giant corporate farms and farms owned by foreign interests.

As I noted in my article yesterday, over 27 million acres of U.S. farmland is now owned by foreigners. This should have never been allowed to happen, because it is a major national security risk.

If a trade agreement with China is reached soon, that would greatly ease the suffering of America’s farmers. But as long as the U.S. and Canada continue to hold Huawei CFO Meng Wanzhou, that is not going to happen. Instead, the Chinese are going to attempt to buy time by trying to get the U.S. to agree to suspend the implementation of additional tariffs as “negotiations” continue.

And on Friday, we got word that a new trade war between the United States and Europe may be about to begin

With little apparent progress in U.S.-China trade talks, the Trump administration could be about to open up a new front in the trade wars by taking on the European auto industry — and that could spook markets.

Global financial markets have bounced back a bit in recent weeks, but more trade chaos could easily send them tumbling once again

Some strategists fear investors are keenly focused on China, and expect a resolution, but could be surprised by ramped-up trade friction with Europe.

“The market would tank,” said Peter Boocvkar, chief investment officer at Bleakley Advisory Group. “The market has spoken loud and clear that it’s had enough of these tariffs… The market is fed up with this. Global growth is slowing dramatically because of trade. You want to put another bullet in it’s head?

Meanwhile, we continue to get more indications that the global economy is slowing down substantially.

For example, we just learned that German industrial production plummeted dramatically for the second month in a row in December

“Unexpectedly,” German industrial production fell 3.9% in December 2018 compared to December 2017, after having fallen by a revised 4.0% in November, according to German statistics agency Destatis Thursday morning. These two drops were steepest year-over-year drops since 2009.

Even during the European Debt Crisis in 2011 and 2012 – it hit Germany’s industry hard as many European countries weaved in and out of a recession, with some countries sinking into a depression — German industrial production never fell as fast on a year-over-year basis as in November and December

And here in the United States, General Motors has begun giving out pink slips to thousands of workers

General Motors on Monday said it was starting to hand pink slips to about 4,000 salaried workers in the latest round of a restructuring announced in late November that will ultimately shrink its white-collar workforce in North America by 15 percent out of 54,000.

Two people briefed on the cuts said GM is cutting hundreds of jobs at its information technology centers in Texas, Georgia, Arizona and Michigan and more than 1,000 jobs at its Warren, Michigan Tech Center. GM is filing new required mass layoff notices with state agencies and disclosed the cuts to lawmakers.

Needless to say, General Motors would not be doing this if the U.S. economy really was “booming”.

A global economic downturn has arrived, and it looks like it is only going to escalate as we move deeper into 2019.

Get Prepared NowAbout the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally-syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including Get Prepared Now, The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters. His articles are originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog, End Of The American Dream and The Most Important News. From there, his articles are republished on dozens of other prominent websites all over the nation. If you would like to republish his articles, please feel free to do so. The more people that see this information the better, and we need to wake more people up while there is still time.

Illinois Has Put Up A Monument To Satan In Their State Capitol Building (Yes, This Is Actually True)

If you go into the Illinois Capitol rotunda right now, you will find a Christmas-themed Satanic sculpture that has been entitled “”The Snaketivity”. The sculpture features an arm holding an apple with a snake coiled around it. Obviously, this is a very clear reference to the temptation of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. Underneath, there is an inscription that says “Knowledge Is The Greatest Gift”. This sculpture was a “gift” from the Satanic Temple of Chicago, and it will only be up temporarily. Other faiths have traditionally had prominent displays in the rotunda this time of the year, and so the Satanic Temple saw an opportunity to get their message out, and officials in Illinois felt that they must allow the Satanists to exercise their First Amendment rights

The sculpture sits under the Capitol’s rotunda along with other traditional religious displays, including a Christmas nativity scene and a menorah for Hanukkah.

“Under the Constitution, the First Amendment, people have a right to express their feelings, their thoughts,” spokesman for the secretary of state Dave Druker said Monday. “This recognizes that.”

Not too far away from “the Snaketivity”, there is a sign which goes into more detail about why the State of Illinois has allowed this to happen…

“The State of Illinois is required by the First Amendment of the United States Constitution to allow temporary, public displays in the state capitol so long as these displays are not paid for by taxpayer dollars. Because the first floor of the Capitol Rotunda is a public place, state officials cannot legally censor the content of speech or displays. The United States Supreme Court has held that public officials may legally impose reasonable time, place and manner restrictions regarding displays and speeches, but no regulation can be based on the content of the speech.”

Speaking as a former attorney, that is complete and utter nonsense.

The state of Illinois does not have to allow any public displays in the state capitol. But if they allow other religious displays such as a Christmas tree, then according to federal court rulings they must make space available for other faiths.

So the solution to this problem is actually really easy. The state of Illinois should just end all public displays for the holiday season.

But instead, they have chosen to allow a monument to Satan to be put up in their state capitol building, and that is just shameful.

Of course the Satanists are absolutely cherishing their little victory. They have even created a GoFundMe campaign which explains what they are attempting to do…

“The Satanic Temple—Chicago will no longer allow one religious perspective to dominate the discourse in the Illinois State Capitol rotunda during the holiday season. … Please consider what you may do to help us bring Satan to Springfield!”

If our founders were around today, they would be marching on Springfield right now.

We have allowed everything to be turned upside down, and we don’t even know how to tell right from wrong anymore.

And now that the Satanic Temple has been successful in Illinois, it is inevitable that they will be demanding the right to “exercise their First Amendment rights” in state capitol buildings all over the nation.

What in the world has happened to us?

About the author: Michael Snyder is a nationally syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is publisher of The Most Important News and the author of four books including The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters.

Illinois Governor Erupts In Anger After The Mayor Allows Radical Leftists To Shut Down Chicago’s Dan Ryan Expressway

(USA Today) After thousands of demonstrators shut down Chicago’s Dan Ryan Expressway calling on elected officials to address gun violence in the city, Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner, objected to Emanuel’s support of the protests.

In a tweet, Rauner said he was “disappointed” in the mayor for allowing the protests to stop traffic. “I am calling on the Mayor to take swift and decisive action to put an end to this kind of chaos,” Rauner tweeted.

The Best Places To Live In All 50 U.S. States

We live at a time when Americans are packing up and moving with increasing frequency.  Some are moving for new opportunities, some are moving in anticipation of what is coming, and others are moving just because they are bored.  As the publisher of The Economic Collapse Blog and The Most Important News, I am frequently asked to give my opinion about a potential move.  Of course I often don’t know what to say, because often factors that I don’t fully understand are involved in the decision.  For example, someone may be moving somewhere truly horrible for a wonderful new job, or complex family relationships are precipitating a move.  But there are some general principles that I share with people, and I will be sharing some of them with you in this article.

If you do a Google search, you will find that most lists of “best places to live” focus on major cities, but often the best place to live within a certain geographic area is far away from a major population center.  And obviously my choices have a lot more to do with quality of life and sustainability during the coming crisis years than with things like “employment opportunities” or “entertainment options”.

With all that being said, here are my choices for the best places to live in all 50 U.S. states…

Alabama – The coast is always tempting if you like the water, but we have all seen what hurricanes have done to the area around Mobile.  If I had to choose some place to live in the state, I think that I would focus up north near the Tennessee border.  There are more fresh water resources up north, and the Huntsville economy has been doing relatively well in recent years.

Alaska – I have always had a fondness for Juneau, but would probably rule it out for practical reasons.  It is quite isolated and it is way too close to the water.  In the years to come it will pay to be away from the ocean and from the major volcanoes, and so somewhere around Anchorage would probably be my choice.

Arizona – Even though my good friend John Shorey may disagree, I actually don’t like Arizona much at all.  Phoenix is way too overcrowded, Tucson is way too hot, and Sedona is way too crazy.  If I had to live in Arizona, I would definitely find somewhere with water, because water resources are going to be at a premium during the years ahead.

Arkansas – Even though Wal-Mart is headquartered there, northwest Arkansas is a lovely area.  Once you get away from Fayetteville there are lots of open areas, and fresh water is fairly abundant.  Crime is relatively low, but there is some around.  The key is to find a good community.

California – Unless you must do so for work or you feel directly called by God to go there, it is probably not a good idea to move to California.  If I had to choose anywhere in the state, it would probably be the far northern area away from the coast.  For much more on why you shouldn’t move to California, please see my recent article entitled “Why Are So Many People Moving Out Of California?”

Colorado – Many years ago I considered a move to Colorado, and I am so glad that I was talked out of it.  The quality of life in the Denver area is continually deteriorating, and more people just keep on moving in from other states.  I am told that Colorado Springs and Fort Collins are still fairly nice, but I wouldn’t be eager to move to either location.  If you must go to Colorado, try to find somewhere rural that has easy access to fresh water.

Connecticut – I actually applied to go to law school at Yale, but I was turned down.  I really would have loved to live up there, although I hear that New Haven is riddled with crime.  Considering the times that we are moving into, I would try to get inland as far as possible, and so I would probably look at any of the small towns north of Hartford.

Delaware – It is right along the ocean, it is riddled with crime, and it is best known for producing Joe Biden.  You probably do not want to move to Delaware if you can avoid it.

Florida – After being rejected by Yale, I was accepted by the University of Florida law school and I had four wonderful years there.  So I have to admit that I am partial to Gainesville, although there are some wonderful places in the panhandle as well.  Unfortunately for Florida, most of the state is either below, at or just above sea level, and that means that it is extremely vulnerable to potential tsunamis.  And crime has become a growing problem in the urban areas, and so that is a major factor to look at when considering a move into the Sunshine State.

Georgia – In Georgia you will want to stay far away from the madhouse that Atlanta has become, and you will want to stay far away from the Atlantic Ocean.  It would be tempting to look at Augusta, but I would probably choose one of the small towns near the northern border.

Hawaii – I think that nearly all of us have dreamed of living in Hawaii at one point or another.  Unfortunately, these are volcanic islands in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, and one of them is erupting right now.  So while it might be tempting to consider a move to Hawaii, for practical reasons you should probably cross it off the list.

Idaho – People up here tend to get upset when I encourage my readers to consider coming to Idaho.  But of course there are good areas of Idaho and there are bad areas of Idaho, and more crazy people from liberal states such as California move in with each passing day.  If you want relatively moderate weather, stunning scenery, low crime and a low population density, I would commend north Idaho.  Unfortunately there are not many employment opportunities up here, and so don’t count on finding a good job after you move.  You will want to have your source of income squared away before you arrive.

Illinois – You can probably guess what I am going to say.  Chicago has become one of the most violent cities in North America, and that is really saying something considering what is going on in Mexico right now.  Today, approximately 125,000 gang members live in the city of Chicago, and they outnumber the police by more than 10 to 1.  If you must live in Illinois, you probably want to stay as far away from Chicago as you can.

Indiana – In general, the further south you go in the state the better.  Fort Wayne and Gary are hellholes, Indianapolis is better, and the small towns that stretch across southern Indiana are probably the best choices of all in the state.  I would avoid Evansville and focus more on the eastern part of the state, but the truth is that the whole region is in potential earthquake territory.

Iowa – Iowa is actually very nice.  It is flat, it is cold, and there are way too many crazy liberals there, but other than that it is quite nice.  I would probably avoid Des Moines and focus on finding a rural community with easy access to fresh water.

Kansas – Kansas is nice too, but the big problem in Kansas is not enough rain.  The current drought is getting really bad, and it looks like Dust Bowl conditions are rapidly returning to the state.  So for that reason alone, I would probably avoid Kansas.

Kentucky – Beautiful scenery, but it is hard to ignore the crushing poverty and the out of control opioid crisis.  If I was moving to Kentucky, I would focus on the far eastern portion of the state so that I could get as far away from the New Madrid fault zone as possible.

Louisiana – They have good food, but they are also a potential epicenter for natural disasters in the years ahead.  We all saw what Hurricane Katrina did to New Orleans, the Mississippi River is prone to major flooding, and one day the state is going to be on the receiving end of the aftermath of a massive New Madrid earthquake.  So it is probably not a state that would be high on my list of places to live.

Maine – Thanks to very liberal immigration policies, the character of towns all along the Maine coast has greatly changed in recent years.  There are still some towns up north that are very nice, but be prepared if you move to one of them, because it gets bitterly, bitterly cold in the winter.

Maryland – Much of western Maryland is actually very, very lovely, but not much else good can be said for the rest of the state.  If you must live in Maryland, you will want to stay far away from the shore, far away from Washington D.C. and you certainly won’t want to be anywhere near the drug-infested hellhole that is called Baltimore.  So that doesn’t leave much else except for western Maryland, but like I said, western Maryland is actually very, very lovely.

Massachusetts – If John Adams could see us now he would be absolutely horrified by what we have done to his state.  If I had to choose somewhere to live, I would focus on the small towns west of Interstate 91.  They tend to be a bit less liberal than the rest of the state, but I wouldn’t count on meeting too many true conservatives there either.

Michigan – If I had to live in Michigan, the choice would be easy.  I would definitely focus my search on the upper peninsula, because I would want to be as far away from Detroit, Flint and the other major population centers as possible.  In reality, the upper peninsula of Michigan is much more like Wisconsin than Michigan, and that is a good thing.  But if you move there you will need to prepare for some of the most bitter winters that you have ever encountered.

Minnesota – Speaking of bitter winters, Minnesota can be a very tough place to live.  Both of my parents were born in Minnesota, and I have been there many times.  Coming from Scandinavian roots, the bitter winters didn’t bother my parents too much, but they never passed that trait on to me.  If you can survive the winters, the giant mosquitos and the machete-wielding terrorists, you will probably do okay.  There are plenty of small, rural communities scattered throughout the state, and plenty of fresh water.

Mississippi – If you can find somewhere in the state away from the coast, away from the Mississippi and that isn’t being crushed by rising poverty and rising crime, you will probably do okay for a while.  But once again, I am deeply concerned about how this state will do when the New Madrid fault finally rips wide open.

Missouri – One of the worst cities in the entire country (St. Louis) dominates the eastern part of the state, the western part of the state is going to be deeply affected by the ongoing drought out west, but I actually love the southern part of the state.  I really love Branson and the surrounding areas, and I just wish that it wasn’t so close to the New Madrid fault zone.

Montana – There are a lot of people moving to Montana, and many of them don’t seem to be able to handle the bitter cold during the winter that well.  Western Montana is definitely superior to eastern Montana, but the entire state features a low population density and plenty of fresh water resources.

Nebraska – For the Democrats, this is “flyover country”, but the truth is that it is part of the heartland of America.  Like neighboring Kansas, Dust Bowl conditions are going to be an increasing concern, and so it will probably be best to avoid Nebraska unless necessary.

Nevada – Las Vegas dominates the region, and much of the rest of the state is a giant desert.  It is not a bad place overall, but the lack of water in the state is a major concern.  Someday the population of Las Vegas will need to be greatly reduced due to a lack of water, and the same thing will probably be true for other cities as well.

New Hampshire – Once you get away from the major population centers, New Hampshire is actually quite lovely.  And the population tends to be less liberal than New England as a whole.  But without a doubt it gets bitterly cold in the winter, and there aren’t many employment opportunities in the rural areas.

New Jersey – It wants to be known as “the garden state”, but most of us know it as “the armpit of America”.  It is overcrowded, the government is a giant mess, and crime is out of control.  Camden is a microcosm for what is happening to America as a whole, and it is not a pretty picture.  You will want to avoid New Jersey if at all possible.

New Mexico – The state can be summed up in three “D’s” – drought, drugs and decay.  The liberals are rapidly taking over here, and the consequences are quite predictable.  And as Dust Bowl conditions intensify, it will not be a place that anyone wants to be.

New York – The state isn’t all bad.  Yes, New York City is the epicenter for so much that is wrong with our society, but many areas of upstate New York are quite nice.  I would definitely stay north of Interstate 90, and I would focus on rural communities that have easy access to fresh water.

North Carolina – There are some very good reasons why so many people are moving to North Carolina.  The weather is moderate, the economy has been doing relatively well, there are plenty of open spaces, and the scenery is absolutely gorgeous.  Just stay away from the coastline and the major population centers and you will probably be just fine.

North Dakota – Nestled between Minnesota and Montana, this is a state that is for extremely hearty individuals.  But if you can stand the cold and the snow, you will find that this is actually one of the most freedom-loving states in the entire nation, and it has an abundance of natural resources.

Ohio – Cleveland is a nightmare, Cincinnati is not much better, but Columbus is actually fairly nice.  It is technically considered to be part of the New Madrid fault zone, so that is a huge negative, but it does get plenty of rain and it has easy access to lots of fresh water resources.

Oklahoma – This is a state that can never seem to get a break.  It was doing a lot better in recent years, but now Dust Bowl conditions are starting to return once again.  It is also in the very heart of “tornado alley”, and that is a huge factor working against it as well.  I wish that I could commend some area of the state but I really can’t.

Oregon – Much of western Oregon is very similar to California (or worse), but once you get east of Interstate 5 you will start running into a lot of good people.  Some areas of eastern Oregon are actually quite magnificent, and there are lots of high quality small towns if you need a place to hide.

Pennsylvania – Pittsburgh is to be avoided and Philly is a nightmare, but much of the rest of the state is actually very nice.  I would just try to stay away from the major population centers and focus my search on rural communities with each access to fresh water.

Rhode Island – I was actually born in Rhode Island, but that doesn’t mean that I am going to commend it to anyone.  It is our smallest state, and so there isn’t a lot of room to get away from the major population centers.  Unless you must be there, it is probably best to find somewhere else to live.

South Carolina – Many of the positives that can be said for North Carolina can also be said for South Carolina.  Just make sure that you are far, far away from the coast and from the major population centers and you will probably be just fine.

South Dakota – I actually like South Dakota more than North Dakota.  The weather is not quite as bitterly cold, the economy is a little more vibrant thanks to the tourists, and Rapid City and Sioux Falls are both decent.  It is far enough north that the drought is not affecting it too much so far, although that could change at any time.

Tennessee – You will want to stay away from Memphis and the west end of the state entirely.  If you are considering moving there, you will want to look at Knoxville and the Smoky Mountains to the east.  That whole region is teeming with natural resources and has a very low population density.

Texas – There are a lot of wonderful conservative people in Texas, but incoming transplants from California are trying to change things as rapidly as possible.  The major cities are way too overcrowded, crime is increasing due to illegal immigration and the drought is becoming a major problem.  But millions of good people love Texas, and it is easy to understand why.  It has got a great culture, and there are so many good communities down there.

Utah – The south is being heavily affected by the drought, and so that is a major concern.  Up north, Salt Lake City is doing quite well, but if you aren’t a Mormon you may find it difficult to fit in.  As with all of these states, I would strongly recommend visiting before making a permanent decision to move there.

Vermont – So many of the exact same things that were said about New Hampshire could also be said about Vermont.  I would be half-tempted to move there myself for the great natural beauty, but unfortunately the liberals are making a complete mess of the state.

Virginia – I received my undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia, and I must admit that Charlottesville is one of my all-time favorite places in the entire country.  Unfortunately, Charlottesville’s good name has been dragged through the mud, and that is a terrible shame.  For the years ahead, I would want to be as far away from D.C. and Richmond as possible, and so I would focus on Roanoke and points west of there.

Washington – The western half of the state is dominated by the liberal bastion of Seattle, and the eastern half of the state is dominated by “Spo-caine”.  Trust me, you don’t want to cheap out on a hotel when you are staying in “Spo-caine” because you could end up in a drug-infested hellhole that doesn’t look like it has had any maintenance for 20 years.  Yes, there are some areas of northeastern Washington that are very good, but you will want to choose your community carefully.

West Virginia – If West Virginia did not have such crippling poverty and was not one of the national epicenters for our exploding opioid crisis, I am sure that we would be able to say some really good things about the state.  Unfortunately, the state just seems to spiral further and further downhill with each passing year.

Wisconsin – Most of the liberals are either in Madison or in Milwaukee, and so finding a spot up north would definitely be preferable.  Once again, it is bitterly cold in this state for much of the year, but if you can handle that a rural community in Wisconsin with easy access to fresh water is not a horrible choice.

Wyoming – There is so much good that can be said for Wyoming.  It is very conservative, the population density is extremely low, there is no state income tax, and there is so much great natural beauty. But it is very, very windy there.  The wind never seems to stop and it cuts through you like a knife, and this is particularly agonizing during the winter.

Michael Snyder is a nationally syndicated writer, media personality and political activist. He is the author of four books including The Beginning Of The End and Living A Life That Really Matters.

12 Critical Events That Are Going To Happen Over A 40 Day Period From August 21st To September 30th

We are about to witness an extremely unusual convergence of events that many believe could represent a major turning point for our nation. By now you have probably heard that on August 21st a total solar eclipse will move across the entire continental United States for the first time in decades. In fact, we have not seen a total solar eclipse cross from the west coast to the east coast in 99 years. And it will be the very first total solar eclipse that is only visible in this country since the United States first became a nation. Starting with that event, there is going to be a whole lot going on until we reach the end of September. The following are 12 critical events that are going to happen over a 40 day period from August 21st to September 30th…

August 21 – The “Great American Eclipse” will sweep across portions of Oregon, Idaho, Wyoming, Montana, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, North Carolina and South Carolina. Seven years later, another very unusual total solar eclipse will move across our nation, and when you plot the paths of both eclipses on a map, they form a giant “X” right over the center of the United States.

August 23 – A FEMA exercise known as “EarthEX2017” will simulate “catastrophes such as mega earthquakes, cyber terrorism or high altitude electromagnetic pulse attacks”

An exercise sponsored by FEMA and the U.S. Department of Energy set to take place on August 23 called EarthEX2017 will wargame responses to catastrophes such as mega earthquakes, cyber terrorism or high altitude electromagnetic pulse attacks.

The exercise will simulate a “subcontinent-scale, long duration power outage, with cascading failures of all other infrastructures,” according to the official Earth Ex website.

“Black sky events” are defined as, “Catastrophic occurrences caused by man or nature that bring society to its knees.”

September 1 – This marks the start of FEMA’s annual “National Preparedness Month“.

September 1 – The U.S. State Department’s ban on U.S. citizens traveling into North Korea goes into effect. Many are concerned that this is yet another sign that we are moving toward war with North Korea.

September 11 – This will be the 16th anniversary of 9/11.

September 20 – Rosh Hashanah begins at sunset.

September 21The UN International Day Of Peace

September 23 – This is the date of what has become known as “the Revelation 12 sign”. If you are not familiar with this alignment yet, the following is a very brief summary

On September 23rd a unique astronomical alignment of the Sun, Moon, constellation Virgo, constellation Leo, and planets Jupiter, Mars, Mercury, and Venus is going to fulfill this passage from the book of Revelation:

And a great sign appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars. She was pregnant and was crying out in birth pains and the agony of giving birth.

September 24 – Very important national elections will be held in Germany.

September 29 – Yom Kippur begins at sunset, and it concludes on September 30th. Of course September 30th will be the end of a 40 day period that began back on the day of the Great American Eclipse on August 21st.

September 29 – U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says that the debt ceiling will be breached on this day if Congress does not raise it by then.

September 30 – If Congress does not pass a budget by the end of this day, there will be a government shutdown just like we witnessed in 2013.

On top of everything else, the month of September is when the Federal Reserve is scheduled to begin unwinding their 4.5 trillion dollar balance sheet

The other big market force that could ruffle markets is clearly the Fed, which is expected to begin the untested task of unwinding its $4.5 trillion balance sheet in September.

In addition, it is very interesting to note that a large asteroid will come within 4,200 miles of our planet on October 12th…

The asteroid has not been seen since its 2012 discovery, when it sped past Earth at about one-fourth the distance from Earth to the moon. It’s been too distant and too faint to be detected over the last five years. As it starts to approach Earth this summer, large telescopes will be used to detect it and re-establish the asteroid’s precise trajectory.

The asteroid, known as 2012 TC4, could come as close as 4,200 miles to Earth, NASA said. That’s actually fairly close, when you consider that the moon is about 239,000 miles away.

So what does all of this mean?

I don’t know, but I am sure that I will receive even more criticism for putting this list together. Those of us that monitor global events and warn about where things are headed are often highly criticized. But in this day and age, we desperately need independent thinkers that are willing to challenge the system. Way too often people just go with the herd and will believe whatever the mainstream media tells them to think.

Never let someone else do your thinking for you. Investigate things for yourself and come to your own conclusions. Learning to think critically is one of the most important skills that you can have, and you will find that it is one of the most common traits among those that are truly “awake” to what is going on in the world.

The truth is out there, and if you diligently seek it you will eventually find it.

Michael Snyder is a Republican candidate for Congress in Idaho’s First Congressional District, and you can learn how you can get involved in the campaign on his official website. His new book entitled “Living A Life That Really Matters” is available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.com.

The Most Unusual (And Significant?) Solar Eclipse In U.S. History Will Happen Next Month On August 21

August 21st is the date of “the Great American Eclipse”, and the hype around it is already starting to reach a fever pitch.  It is being called “the Great American Eclipse” because this will be the first total solar eclipse ever that is only visible in the United States.  In other words, since the United States became a nation there has never been a total eclipse that was only visible here and nowhere else.  And this will be the first total solar eclipse to cross from the west coast to the east coast in 99 years.  So for those that love astronomy, this is bigger than the Super Bowl.

Close to 200 million people live within a day’s drive of “the totality zone”, and many are projecting that this will be the most-viewed eclipse ever.  In fact, many hotels and campsites along the path of the eclipse are already completely booked.  So if you want to see it live, you better make your arrangements quickly.

Of course the “main event” will not last for very long.  Depending on the location, the total eclipse will only last for about two or three minutes.

But if you count from the time that the moon will begin to cover the sun until the time when the sun is completely uncovered again, it will take approximately two and a half hours for the entire process to unfold.  The following comes from Newsweek

If you are in the band of totality, you will see (if you look through special ‘solar filters’ that darken the Sun by a factor of about 100,000) the Moon gradually covering the sun for about 75 min, then the beautiful totality, and then the uncovering for another 75 min.

Of course in the heavens things will be taking place at very high speed.  For example, the moon’s shadow will actually be crossing the U.S. at a speed of close to 1,700 miles per hour.

And even if you are not in the “totality zone”, you will still notice what is happening on August 21st.  That is because this eclipse will actually cast a “shadow” over the entire nation.

Could it be possible that has some sort of significance?

I don’t know, but without a doubt there will be a whole lot of speculation going on as we get closer to the date.

Many have pointed out that this solar total eclipse in 2017 will be followed by another total solar eclipse nearly seven years later on April 8th, 2024.

And when you plot the projected courses of these two solar eclipses on a map, they form a giant “X” over the center of the United States…

Could this be some sort of extremely bizarre coincidence?

And if it isn’t a coincidence, what could it mean?

I am afraid that I don’t have the answers to those questions right now, but I do find it to be extremely interesting that the heart of this “X” just happens to fall in the middle of the New Madrid fault zone.

Back in 1811 and 1812, the New Madrid Fault zone was hit by a series of absolutely massive earthquakes.  At one point the shaking was so bad that it even caused church bells in Boston to start ringing.  If similar earthquakes happened in our day and time, the damage would be absolutely unimaginable. The following comes from Smithsonian.com

The Midwest was sparsely populated, and deaths were few. But 8-year-old Godfrey Lesieur saw the ground “rolling in waves.” Michael Braunm observed the river suddenly rise up “like a great loaf of bread to the height of many feet.” Sections of riverbed below the Mississippi rose so high that part of the river ran backward. Thousands of fissures ripped open fields, and geysers burst from the earth, spewing sand, water, mud and coal high into the air.

Could you imagine “thousands of fissures” suddenly opening up all over the middle of the country?

One insurance company tried to estimate what the economic toll would be if similar quakes happened today, and they came up with a figure of “about 300 billion dollars”

A series of big shakes — of the sort last seen in 1811 and 1812 — would cause about $300 billion in damage, Swiss Re says. The cost would be double the damage from Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans in 2005.

Houses — especially brick ones — would collapse. Buildings would sink sideways into liquefying earth. Bridges might tumble into the rivers. The route of the Mississippi River could change — as it did in the last big quake.

People would die, perhaps by the thousands. Being mainly a property reinsurer, Swiss Re didn’t estimate the human toll.

And we should also consider the fact that there are 15 nuclear reactors along the New Madrid fault zone.  And so during a major catastrophe we could be looking at Fukushima times 15.

Let us hope that the next major New Madrid earthquake is put off for as long as possible.  Nobody should ever want to see that kind of devastation.

But scientists tell us that the Earth’s crust is “mechanically weaker” under the New Madrid fault zone than it is in other areas of the country, and they assure us that given enough time there will be more massive quakes in the region someday.

It is entirely possible that it could just be a complete coincidence that these two eclipses form a giant “X” directly over the heart of the New Madrid fault zone, but I think that it would be a mistake to dismiss this phenomenon altogether without reflecting on what it might mean.  Because as Pastor Mark Biltz has pointed out, it appears that God specifically used solar eclipses back in Biblical times

“An archaeological find of cuneiform tablets was found in the 19th century describing events in Nineveh. A famous eclipse mentioned in the tablets was known as the Bur-Sagale eclipse, which is verified by NASA as occurring on June 15, 763 BC. The path of totality was right over Nineveh. God had declared the sun and the moon were for signs, and now the Ninevites saw the wrath of God coming even before Jonah arrived a couple months later. When Jonah arrived, they were ripe for repentance.”

Our world is a very strange place, and it is getting stranger with each passing day.

And one thing is absolutely certain – the entire nation will be looking up into the sky on August 21st, and what they will see will be truly historic.

The Worst Financial Nightmare In Illinois History Erupts As State Comptroller Declares ‘We Are In Massive Crisis Mode’

Margaret Thatcher once said that the big problem with socialist governments is that “they always run out of other people’s money”, and unfortunately we are witnessing this play out in a major way in the state of Illinois right now. At this point, the Illinois state government has more than 15 billion dollars of unpaid bills. Yes, you read that correctly. They are already 15 billion dollars behind on their bills, and they are on pace to take in 6 billion dollars less than they are scheduled to spend in 2017. It is the worst financial crisis in the history of Illinois, and State Comptroller Susana Mendoza sounds like she is about ready to tear her hair out in frustration

“I don’t know what part of ‘We are in massive crisis mode’ the General Assembly and the governor don’t understand. This is not a false alarm,” said Mendoza, a Chicago Democrat. “The magic tricks run out after a while, and that’s where we’re at.”

It’s a new low, even for a state that’s seen its financial situation grow increasingly desperate amid a standoff between the Democrat-led Legislature and Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner. Illinois already has $15 billion in overdue bills and the lowest credit rating of any state, and some ratings agencies have warned they will downgrade the rating to “junk” if there’s no budget before the next fiscal year begins July 1.

Would you continue to do work for the Illinois state government if you knew that they were this far behind on their bills and that it is doubtful that you would be paid any time in the foreseeable future?

Of course the answer to that question is quite obvious. As contractual relationships break down, social services are starting to suffer, and there is not much hope that things will take a turn for the better any time soon.

At this point things have gotten so bad that the Illinois Department of Transportation is planning to cease all roadwork starting on July 1st, and even the Powerball lottery is threatening to cut all ties with the state

As reported previously, the state Transportation Department said it would stop roadwork by July 1 if Illinois entered its third consecutive fiscal year without a budget – the longest such stretch of any US state – while the Powerball lottery said it may be forced to dump Illinois over its lack of budget. For now, state workers have continued to receive pay because of court orders, but school districts, colleges and medical and social service providers are under increasing strain.

So what has caused this unprecedented crisis?

At the core, the problem is political. A tense standoff between a Republican governor and a Democratic legislature has resulted in the state going 700 days without a budget

On May 31, Illinois will have gone 700 days without a budget, an unprecedented political failure. Also on May 31, if a budget is not passed, it could mean that the state could go until 2019—an unimaginable idea, except that senators have already imagined it.

How does a state, led by a successful businessman as governor, a brilliant political strategist in the House, and a consummate dealmaker in the Senate, end up in this kind of political disorganization? Bad political errors led to bad political incentives, and as the problem worsened, so did the political risk of solutions—and what politicians had to ask of their constituents.

This is another example of how deeply divided we are as a nation right now. Democrats hate Republicans and Republicans hate Democrats, and it is getting to the point where the two parties cannot work together on even the most basic things.

In the end, the state of Illinois is either going to have to cut spending dramatically, raise taxes substantially or some combination of both. And since the Democrats have very large majorities in both chambers of the state legislature, I wouldn’t count on spending being cut that much.

This is the thing with big government – it always has a tendency to get even bigger. And the bigger government gets, the more of our money and the more of our freedom it takes away.

That is why I am a huge advocate of dramatically shrinking the size of government on the federal, state and local levels. Like Rand Paul has often said, I want a government so small that I can barely see it.

When you let government get out of control, what you end up with is a ravenous beast that has an endless appetite for more of your money. In Illinois, the money is all gone and the beast is desperately hungry for more.

Sadly, what is happening in Illinois is just the tip of the iceberg. If stock prices start declining from these massively inflated levels, state pension funds all over America are going to be in crisis mode very rapidly. And a new recession would greatly accelerate the financial problems of a whole bunch of states that are already dealing with huge budget shortfalls.

Unfortunately, experts all over the country are warning that the next major downturn is coming very quickly. For example, just consider what Bernard Arnault just told CNBC

A financial crisis could be just around the corner, according to the chief executive of LVMH, who has described the global economic outlook as “scary”.

“For the economic climate, the present situation is…mid-term scary,” Bernard Arnault told CNBC Thursday.

“I don’t think we will be able to globally avoid a crisis when I see the interest rates so low, when I see the amounts of money flowing into the world, when I see the stock prices which are much too high, I think a bubble is building and this bubble, one day, will explode.”

There is always a price to pay for going into too much debt.

A financial day of reckoning can be delayed for a while, but eventually bad financial decisions are going to catch up with you. The state of Illinois is learning this lesson in a very harsh manner right now, and the country as a whole is on the exact same path as Illinois.

I am often criticized for endlessly warning about America’s coming day of reckoning, but you can’t pile up the biggest mountain of debt in the history of the world without paying a price.

Just like the state of Illinois, we will pay for decades of exceedingly foolish decisions, and unfortunately this is going to cause severe economic pain throughout our entire society.

(Originally published on The Economic Collapse Blog)

Schools All Over America Are Closing On Election Day Due To Fears Of Violence

vote-2016-public-domain

Will this be the most chaotic election day in modern American history?  All across the nation, schools are being closed on election day due to safety fears.  Traditionally, schools have been very popular as voting locations because they can accommodate a lot of people, they usually have lots of parking, and everyone in the community knows where they are and can usually get to them fairly easily.  But now there is a big movement to remove voting from schools or to shut schools down on election day so that children are not present when voting takes place.  According to Fox News, “voting has been removed or classes have been canceled on Election Day at schools in Illinois, Maine, Nebraska, New Hampshire, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and elsewhere.”  Just a couple days ago, I shared with you a survey that found that 51 percent of all Americans are concerned about violence happening on election day, and all of these schools closing is just another sign of how on edge much of the population is as we approach November 8th.

Many officials are being very honest about the fact that schools are being shut down on election day because they are afraid of election violence.  The following comes from Fox News

Several schools across the nation have decided to close on Election Day over fears of possible violence in the hallways stemming from the fallout from the heated rhetoric that consumed the campaign trail.

The fear is the ugliness of the election season could escalate into confrontations and even violence in the school hallways, endangering students.

“If anybody can sit there and say they don’t think this is a contentious election, then they aren’t paying much attention,” Ed Tolan, the Falmouth, Maine police chief, said Tuesday. His community has already called off classes on Nov. 8 and an increased police presence will be felt around town.

And without a doubt, voting locations are “soft targets” that often have little or no security.  We have been blessed to have had such peaceful elections in the past, but we also need to realize that times have changed.  I believe that there is wisdom in what Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp told reporters

“There is a concern, just like at a concert, sporting event or other public gathering that we didn’t have 15 or 20 years ago,” said Georgia Secretary of State Brian Kemp, co-chairman of the National Association of Secretaries of State election committee. “What if someone walks in a polling location with a backpack bomb or something? If that happens at a school, then that’s certainly concerning.”

All it is going to take is a single incident to change everything.

Let us hope that it is not this election day when we see something like that.

Another reason why polling locations are under increased scrutiny this election season is because of concerns about election fraud.  This is something that Donald Trump has alluded to repeatedly on the campaign trail.  For instance, just consider what he told a rally in Pennsylvania

“We don’t want to lose an election because you know what I’m talking about,” Trump told an overwhelmingly white crowd in Manheim, Pa., earlier this month. “Because you know what? That’s a big, big problem, and nobody wants to talk about it. Nobody has the guts to talk about it. So go and watch these polling places.”

And of course reports are already pouring in from around the country of big problems with the voting machines.  In Illinois this week, one candidate personally experienced a machine switching his votes from Republicans to Democrats…

Early voting in Illinois got off to a rocky start Monday, as votes being cast for Republican candidates were transformed into votes for Democrats.

Republican state representative candidate Jim Moynihan went to vote Monday at the Schaumburg Public Library.

“I tried to cast a vote for myself and instead it cast the vote for my opponent,” Moynihan said. “You could imagine my surprise as the same thing happened with a number of races when I tried to vote for a Republican and the machine registered a vote for a Democrat.”

In addition, if you keep up with my work on The Economic Collapse Blog, then you already know that a number of voters down in Texas have reported that their votes were switched from Donald Trump to Hillary Clinton.

Well, it turns out that those voting machines appear to have a link to the Clinton Foundation

According to OpenSecrets, the company who provided the alleged glitching voting machines is a subsidiary of The McCarthy Group.

The McCarthy group is a major donor to the Clinton Foundation – apparently donating 200,000 dollars in 2007 – when it was the largest owner of United States voting machines. Or perhaps the 200,000 dollars went to paying Bill Clinton for speeches?

Either way, it doesn’t look good.

After everything that we saw in 2012, I am convinced that there is good reason to be concerned about the integrity of our voting machines.

But Democrats don’t like poll observers, because they think that having too many poll observers will intimidate their voters…

“It’s un-American, but at the same time we have a long history of doing things like that,” Ari Berman, author of the 2016 book “Give Us the Ballot: The Modern Struggle for Voting Rights in America,” previously told The Christian Science Monitor. “Voting was very, very dangerous. I don’t think anyone’s suggesting that we’re at the same place today. I just think the loss of the [official poll observers] is going to be really problematic.”

Without a doubt, this has been the craziest election season that we have seen in decades, and I have a feeling that it is about to get even crazier.

But will the end result be the election of the most corrupt politician in the history of our country?

If that is the outcome after all that we have been through, it will be exceedingly depressing indeed.

About the author: Michael Snyder is the founder and publisher of The Economic Collapse Blog and End Of The American Dream. Michael’s controversial new book about Bible prophecy entitled “The Rapture Verdict” is available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.com.*

Foreshock? A Significant Earthquake Just Hit The New Madrid Fault Seismic Zone

Kentucky 3.5 Earthquake

Could the earthquake that just struck the New Madrid fault seismic zone near the town of La Center, Kentucky be a “foreshock” for a much bigger quake yet to come? Very early on Sunday morning, a magnitude 3.5 earthquake hit western Kentucky, and it was felt in parts of three other states as well. In fact, it is being reported that the quake could be felt all the way over in Miller, Missouri, which is 267 miles away. The New Madrid fault seismic zone is six times larger than the more famous San Andreas fault zone in California, and it covers portions of Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Missouri, Arkansas, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi. Scientists tell us that the New Madrid fault is about 30 years overdue for a major event, and because of the nature of the Earth’s crust in that part of the country, a major earthquake would do significant damage all the way to the east coast.

A big Hollywood blockbuster was named after the San Andreas fault, but the truth is that the New Madrid fault has the potential to do vastly more damage. That is why what happened in a remote section of western Kentucky very early this morning was so alarming

An earthquake near La Center, Kentucky was felt in parts of Illinois and Missouri early on Sunday morning.

According to the National Weather Service in Paducah and the USGS, a magnitude 3.5 was recorded about 8.7 miles north of La Center and 24.2 miles west of Paducah. It happened around 1:12 a.m. and had a depth of about 8.3 miles.

Quite often, there are “foreshocks” that warn us that a major earthquake is coming to a particular area, and many are wondering if this event qualifies.

Most Americans don’t tend to think of the middle of the country as an area that is in danger from earthquakes, but the truth is that some of the worst earthquakes in U.S. history have taken place along the New Madrid fault. The following comes from the USGS

The New Madrid seismic zone of southeast Missouri and adjacent States is the most seismically active in North America east of the Rockies. During the winter of 1811-1812 three very large earthquakes devastated the area and were felt throughout most of the Nation. They occurred a few weeks apart on December 16, January 23, and February 7. Hundreds of aftershocks, some severely damaging by themselves, continued for years. Prehistoric earthquakes similar in size to those of 1811-1812 occurred in the middle 1400’s and around 900 A.D. Strong, damaging earthquakes struck the southwestern end of the seismic zone near Marked Tree, Arkansas in 1843 (magnitude 6.3), and the northeastern end near Charleston, Missouri in 1895 (magnitude 6.6). Since 1900, moderately damaging earthquakes have struck the seismic zone every few decades.

Those earthquakes in 1811 and 1812 tore thousands of very deep fissures in the ground, they caused the Mississippi River to actually run backwards in some places, and they caused sidewalks to crack in Washington D.C. and church bells to ring in Boston.

In our time, the U.S. Geological Survey has admitted that the New Madrid fault zone has the “potential for larger and more powerful quakes than previously thought“, and we have seen the number of significant earthquakes in the middle part of the country more than quintuple in recent years.

If a magnitude 7 or magnitude 8 earthquake were to strike along the New Madrid fault today, the damage that would be done would be absolutely unimaginable because of the nature of the Earth’s crust in this region. According to the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, earthquakes along the New Madrid fault “shake and damage an area approximately 20 times larger than earthquakes in California”

Due to the harder, colder, drier and less fractured nature of the rocks in the earth’s crust in the central United States, earthquakes in this region shake and damage an area approximately 20 times larger than earthquakes in California and most other active seismic areas. Even though large earthquakes occur much less frequently in the NMSZ than in California, the long term average quake threat, in terms of square miles affected per century, is about the same because of the approximately 20 times larger area affected in the central United States.

Are you starting to get an idea of just how devastating this kind of disaster could be?

Once upon a time, our continent almost divided along the New Madrid fault. Of course that didn’t happen, but a massive scar formed deep underground, and this area of weakness has remained ever since. The following comes from Wikipedia

The faults responsible for the New Madrid Seismic Zone are embedded in a subsurface geological feature known as the Reelfoot Rift that formed during the breakup of the supercontinent Rodinia in the Neoproterozoic Era (about 750 million years ago). The resulting rift system failed to split the continent, but has remained as an aulacogen (a scar or zone of weakness) deep underground, and its ancient faults appear to have made the Earth’s crust in the New Madrid area mechanically weaker than much of the rest of North America.

This relative weakness is important, because it would allow the relatively small east-west compressive forces associated with the continuing continental drift of the North American plate to reactivate old faults around New Madrid, making the area unusually prone to earthquakes in spite of it being far from the nearest tectonic plate boundary.

One day, I believe that a major seismic event in the area of this deep scar will literally divide the United States in half.

What that will do to our country is the kind of stuff that apocalyptic novels are written about.

And it is also important to keep in mind that there are 15 nuclear reactors along the New Madrid fault zone, so if a massive earthquake did strike the region we could be looking at Fukushima times 15.

So yes, I am always concerned whenever a significant earthquake hits the New Madrid fault.

On another note, I want to thank everyone who has helped make my new book entitled “The Rapture Verdict” such a roaring success. Over the weekend it actually bumped into the top 300 on Amazon.com. At one point it was sitting at #237 out of more than 3,000,000 books currently listed on the site.

In Matthew 24, Jesus warned us that the time just prior to His return would be marked by earthquakes in diverse places, and right now we are witnessing a dramatic rise in seismic activity all over the planet.

A great shaking is coming to this nation, and the majority of Americans are completely unprepared for it.

Are you?

*About the author: Michael Snyder is the founder and publisher of End Of The American Dream. Michael’s controversial new book about Bible prophecy entitled “The Rapture Verdict” is available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon.com.*

A New Madrid Earthquake Is Coming And America Will Be Shaken Like Never Before

New Madrid Fault Earthquake Zone

Most Americans expect the next great earthquake in the United States to come on the west coast. But what if it strikes right down the middle of the country instead? The New Madrid fault zone is six times larger than the San Andreas fault zone in California and it covers portions of Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Missouri, Arkansas, Kentucky, Tennessee and Mississippi. Back in 1811 and 1812, a series of absolutely devastating earthquakes along the New Madrid fault zone opened very deep fissures in the ground, caused the Mississippi River to run backwards in some places, and were reportedly felt as far away as Washington D.C. and Boston. They were the strongest earthquakes ever recorded east of the Rocky Mountains, and scientists tell us that it is only a matter of time before we experience similar quakes. In fact, the U.S. Geological Survey has admitted that the New Madrid fault zone has the “potential for larger and more powerful quakes than previously thought“, and the number of significant earthquakes in the middle part of the country has more than quintupled in recent years. Someday, perhaps without any warning, an absolutely massive earthquake will strike the New Madrid fault. Thousands of Americans will die, tens of thousands of structures will be completely destroyed, and millions of people will find themselves homeless.

Unlike on the west coast, buildings within the New Madrid fault zone are typically not constructed to withstand major earthquakes. If we were to see the type of earthquake that we saw a little over two centuries ago, it would be a disaster unlike anything that any of us have ever known. The following comes from WKRN, and it describes what those earthquakes back in 1811 and 1812 were like…

Can you believe that in the winter of 1811-1812 a series of earthquakes in northwest Tennessee shook the ground so hard that church bells rang on the East Coast and sidewalks cracked in Washington D.C?

The sitting president, James Madison, was even awakened in the middle of the night by the shaking of the White House.

In Tennessee, and surrounding states, the early settlers and Native American Indians were terrified by the shaking. Large fissures opened up in the ground, and some witnessed the Mississippi River appearing to flow backwards.

It is believed that those quakes shook an area ten times larger than that impacted by the 7.8 San Francisco earthquake of 1906. Some of the giant cracks that opened up in the ground were up to five miles long, and the stench of fire and brimstone hung in the air for months afterwards.

Fortunately, the middle of the country was not heavily populated in 1811 and 1812, so the overall amount of damage was not that great. The following comes from Smithsonian.com

The Midwest was sparsely populated, and deaths were few. But 8-year-old Godfrey Lesieur saw the ground “rolling in waves.” Michael Braunm observed the river suddenly rise up “like a great loaf of bread to the height of many feet.” Sections of riverbed below the Mississippi rose so high that part of the river ran backward. Thousands of fissures ripped open fields, and geysers burst from the earth, spewing sand, water, mud and coal high into the air.

Needless to say, if such a disaster happened today the damage would be absolutely catastrophic.

This is something that government officials have studied, and their conclusions are rather sobering

In a report filed in November 2008, the U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency warned that a serious earthquake in the New Madrid Seismic Zone could result in “the highest economic losses due to a natural disaster in the United States,” further predicting “widespread and catastrophic” damage across Alabama, Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, and particularly Tennessee, where a 7.7 magnitude quake or greater would cause damage to tens of thousands of structures affecting water distribution, transportation systems, and other vital infrastructure.

Do you remember how traumatized people were when a few thousand Americans were killed on 9/11?

Well, how would the country react to a disaster that killed 100,000 Americans instantly?

A few years ago, the federal government held a major five day simulation known as “National Level Exercise 11” that attempted to portray what a major New Madrid earthquake would look like…

In May, the federal government simulated an earthquake so massive, it killed 100,000 Midwesterners instantly, and forced more than 7 million people out of their homes. At the time, National Level Exercise 11 went largely unnoticed; the scenario seemed too far-fetched — states like Illinois and Missouri are in the middle of a tectonic plate, not at the edge of one. A major quake happens there once every several generations.

Could you imagine what that would mean for our nation?

In addition to the human toll, financial markets would completely collapse, key infrastructure throughout the region would be totally destroyed, and transportation on and across the Mississippi River would be brought to a standstill. According to international insurance giant Swiss Re, if the 1811 and 1812 New Madrid earthquakes were to happen today, the economic losses alone would be in the hundreds of billions of dollars

A series of big shakes — of the sort last seen in 1811 and 1812 — would cause about $300 billion in damage, Swiss Re says. The cost would be double the damage from Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans in 2005.

Houses — especially brick ones — would collapse. Buildings would sink sideways into liquefying earth. Bridges might tumble into the rivers. The route of the Mississippi River could change — as it did in the last big quake.

People would die, perhaps by the thousands. Being mainly a property reinsurer, Swiss Re didn’t estimate the human toll.

It is also important to remember that there are 15 nuclear reactors along the New Madrid fault zone.

If a major earthquake did hit the area, we could be looking at Fukushima times 15.

Scientists tell us that there is a very deep “scar” in the earth in this region that makes the New Madrid fault zone “mechanically weaker than much of the rest of North America”. The following comes from Wikipedia

The faults responsible for the New Madrid Seismic Zone are embedded in a subsurface geological feature known as the Reelfoot Rift that formed during the breakup of the supercontinent Rodinia in the Neoproterozoic Era (about 750 million years ago). The resulting rift system failed to split the continent, but has remained as an aulacogen (a scar or zone of weakness) deep underground, and its ancient faults appear to have made the Earth’s crust in the New Madrid area mechanically weaker than much of the rest of North America.

This relative weakness is important, because it would allow the relatively small east-west compressive forces associated with the continuing continental drift of the North American plate to reactivate old faults around New Madrid, making the area unusually prone to earthquakes in spite of it being far from the nearest tectonic plate boundary.

I believe that a major New Madrid earthquake is coming. That is one of the reasons why I included such an earthquake in my novel. Those that choose to live in that region are literally sitting on top of a ticking time bomb, and at some point it is going to blow.

Of course I wouldn’t want to be living on the west coast right now either. The shaking of our planet continues to intensify, and this is going to cause great tragedies in the United States during the years ahead.

The warning signs are all around us. In 2015, the state of Oklahoma shattered their all-time record for earthquakes in a single year, and volcanoes that were thought to be totally dormant are now erupting again all over the planet.

A great shaking is coming to America very soon.

I hope that you are ready.

While Border Is Unprotected, Homeland Security Swarms Small Town In Illinois In Bizarre Show Of Force

Police State

Homeland Security agents, backed by police SWAT teams, armored vehicles and a Black Hawk helicopter staged a bizarre unannounced show of force in front of a school in a small Illinois town, scenes which will exacerbate concerns about the increasing militarization of U.S. law enforcement.

Residents of Livingston, IL., population 850, were shocked to see agents from Homeland Security, the US Customs and Border Patrol and local police agencies swarm a field belonging to a grade school yesterday, with one local telling news channel KTVI, “When all the armored trucks started showing up and everything it made me kind of nervous.”

One child said he thought the spectacle was “pretty cool” and that agents invited the local children to check out the choppers up close, despite the presence of weapons inside the helicopters.

The school superintendent said he was not given any information about the operation beforehand, despite authorities using school land as a staging ground. The U.S. Attorney’s Office refused to release any information on the purpose behind the operation.

KTVI labeled the presence of the feds a “mystery,” although it subsequently emerged that the school was being used as a staging ground for a raid on a house three miles away. Authorities refused to divulge the purpose behind the raid or if anyone was taken into custody.

(Read the rest of the story here…)

Gallup: Rhode Island And Illinois Are The Worst Places To Live, Montana And Alaska The Best

Alaska - Photo by Steve Lyon

When asked to rate their state as a place to live, three in four Montanans (77%) and Alaskans (77%) say their state is the best or one of the best places to live. Residents of Rhode Island (18%) and Illinois (19%) are the least likely to praise their states.

Residents of Western and Midwestern states are generally more positive about their states as places to live. With the exception of the New England states of New Hampshire and Vermont, all of the top 10 rated states are west of the Mississippi River. In addition to Montana and Alaska, Utah (70%), Wyoming (69%), and Colorado (65%) are among the 10 states that residents are most likely to say their state is among the best places to reside. Most of these states have relatively low populations, including Wyoming, Vermont, North Dakota, and Alaska — the four states with the smallest populations in the nation. Texas, the second most populated state, is the major exception to this population relationship. Although it is difficult to discern what the causal relationship is between terrain and climate and positive attitudes, many of the top 10 states are mountainous with cold winters. In fact, the two states most highly rated by their residents — Montana and Alaska — are among not only the nation’s coldest states but also both border Canada.

With the exception of New Mexico, all of the bottom 10 states are either east of the Mississippi River or border it (Louisiana and Missouri). New Jersey (28%), Maryland (29%), and Connecticut (31%) join Rhode Island among the bottom 10.

(Read the rest of the story here…)

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