Ka'u Choices Publishing

Themes in my Books

Crisis Happens To Us All:

An individual or a family that is not located at a crisis event, not close to the maelstrom of an economic or political crisis can usually have little effect on events and their resolution.

However, they are or can be affected in dramatic ways. This change can come quickly, or steadily, slowly and yet have tremendous accumulative power.

This makes huge changes in the lives of people even in remote locations.

Stock market crashes matter. Wars matter. Elections matter. Decisions by "leaders" matter. Crises matter.

Themes: George Wallace

I write about crisis. I’ve lived long enough to have experienced 12 major crises. As an old fogey, I’ve learned a few things. I use that knowledge when writing. I write for ‘little’ people like me. People like me who do not live at the centers of power, politics, or money. I have had to cope with the effects of the decisions made by people far away. Likely you have too.

Remember that political "leaders" are like the seagulls at the beach. They are scavengers. Beautiful while in flight, unless they are right overhead. Then they are dangerous. I don’t like playing the game ‘dodge the poop.’

Of the 12 crises, nine I remember well because I was an adult. I was observant enough to note how these affected me, or those close to me in some way. I’ll discuss two of these here.

The oil embargo of 1973-81, is a case in point. When it was announced, it made almost no impact on my attention. A shrug of the shoulders is perhaps the most that describes my reaction. Over time that changed. Slowly the price of gasoline started to go up. Then gasoline simply became harder to get. Gasoline could only be purchased on certain days and later purchased only in certain amounts.
Interpersonal relationships also became more important. Really important if those contacts could help you get access to extra gasoline. Could your web of contacts help you get gasoline for an emergency? I lived in a rural area at the time. I had a far longer commute than most. My commute included daily delivery and pick-up of pre-school kids before and after work. My more fuel effective vehicle got driven more miles during this period. I was able to eventually get a reserve of gasoline at my residence (a 55 gallon drum). I was lucky enough to be able to juggle supply to needs. I never had to use this reserve for my own use. I did on two occasions "loan" or "give" a 10 gallon re-fueling to friends in desperate straits.

Certainly during this period, my wife and I, and nearly everyone we knew, were deliberately curtailing one purpose trips. Trips had to serve multiple purposes. People shared rides to work or to go shopping. Families did not go on long vacation trips. Vacations were "at home." People turned to DIY home repair projects, and "home entertainments."

The seagulls were flying overhead. It was an interesting time to chance to look up.

Now perhaps you look at my example above and might think that I should have used sparrows as my symbol instead of seagulls.
Then please consider this crisis: the mini-Depression of 2008. Did this crisis cost you something? A job? A promotion? Your home? Your car? A substantial part of the value of the home you own? Your credit rating? Were you forced to go bankrupt? Is your financial future affected for decades to come? Your children’s futures? Is college still a part of their future?

Did you ‘volunteer’ to have these things happen to you? Did you like having it happen to you and your family? Perhaps you should have paid more attention as a voter. Did you cast your vote for the "leaders" that made the decisions that led directly to your problems later.

The "leaders" in government and in finance that dropped a ‘less then golden parachute’ on your head have yet to pay any penalty for gifting you in that way. On the contrary, they walked away with large salaries and huge bonuses. They got the goodies, and you got to pay the bill for them.

Did this crisis happen in thirty minutes with a happy result? Thirty days? Thirty months?

By my calendar, we are in the fifth year [60 months] of the game plan for this financial crisis. It is like being gnawed to death by starving snails.

A fictional story of a crisis that may happen also plays out slowly. As in the real world, you only get incomplete information. The snippets come as little bits, little scenes, from different leads. It is your job as a reader to follow along and enjoy the play of ideas that leads to the eventual joining of pieces. A pattern of clues emerges to a conclusion. If it is ‘real’ and entertaining, all the questions are not answered. You should be left with many layered questions and ideas to think about. That is what is so valuable about good fiction. You must think about what comes next. What did he mean by that? Where does the ‘hero’ go from here? Was he/she really a hero? Was he really a seagull?
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