Mar 212012
 March 21, 2012  Posted by at 7:38 pm Finance

Below is a link to an interview with Nicole by The Extraenvironmentalist. It has become one of my favorite podcasts, as it has excellent hosts and a very diverse set of insightful guests discussing an even more diverse set of important topics, and it is only getting better with each new feature-length episode. And that, of course, is in no small part due to the fact that Nicole was their latest guest! First, some information about the podcast and its mission:

What is The Extraenvironmentalist Podcast?


The Extraenvironmentalist is a podcast that explores the mindset of an outsider looking in on Earth. Such an outsider would be immediately struck by how unsustainable our social, environmental and economic systems are and would promote awareness of this problem while proposing alternatives.


Through The Extraenvironmentalist we’ll create a map for understanding and navigating the transition from the relatively stable world we thought we could expect into the unpredictable and tumultuous world of the early 21st century. With conversations that confront the magnitude of this challenge, our generation can band together and create a solidarity of understanding resulting in a meaningful path of action.


An Extraenvironmentalist Manifesto


You aren’t being borne along the current of an inevitable thing, you are able to steer from what brings you down, make alliances with what supports you. Personal empowerment means deconditioning from values of the society, putting your own values in place. Realize you must shoot for Extra-environmentalism.


When people say they feel like a creature from outer space, that’s not such a bad way to feel, it means you see the game, you don’t buy in, they can’t buy you with a Mercedes, business trips to Paris. It’s a controlled alienation, where you cultivate extra-environmentalism. You are at home everywhere, you are always comfortable, you don’t have to be with people of your class, culture, or earning capacity to feel alright.


Terrence the poet, said, I am a human being therefore nothing human is alien to me. That’s the thing, you accept the human, but be comfortable to acclimate to any cultural styles. It’s a magical thing, you’re a performer, you move through these things knowing this is not who I am, what I am, merely a response to the demands of the moment.

You can access the entire interview and episode from here:

Episode #38 – Hard Times


Debt is placing a stranglehold on the global economy, restricting the ability for growth to occur at a rate fast enough to prevent the monetary system from unraveling. To delay a massive deleveraging, governments are turning on the central bank taps to fill the system with liquidity. With severe structural issues that continue to avoid inclusion in the political discourse, can ordinary people prepare to maintain control over their assets to ensure success of future decentralization initiatives? How is preparing for this world different for our generation than for our parents?


In Extraenvironmentalist #38 we talk about living in hard times with Nicole Foss of The Automatic Earth. Nicole tells us about the Canadian housing bubble and why the initial collapse might just be faster than the one America experienced in 2005. Seth and I ask about what life was like in the Great Depression and how the process of labor exploitation may continue into the near future. We ask Nicole if misunderstandings about economic collapse could have us preparing for the wrong thing.


Also, we get to meet our blog editor Louisa Clarence-Smith who tells us about WWOOFing and her experiences working on farms in Scotland and Italy.

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    Below is a link to an interview with Nicole by The Extraenvironmentalist. It has become one of my favorite podcasts, as it has excellent hosts and a v
    [See the full post at: The Extraenvironmentalist Interviews Nicole Foss]


    Superb and concise commentary, as always! I especially liked the emphasis on how the main purpose of preparing is not so much to preserve ourselves, but to facilitate the establishment of small self-sufficient communities that will survive and be the heritage seeds for whatever growth lies in store for a human experiment that learns from our
    mistakes and is more ethical and prone to taking the pragmatic long view.


    I’ve missed Nicole’s imput greatly, thanks for this interview link.

    Nicole has a special way of illustrating both the large and small picture in such a way as to educate and inspire people without talking down to them.
    She always manages to both clarify and illuminate myriad things, some that I may have read or thought about, but did not connect to each other or know how to follow through with had I connected them.

    I ‘m hoping when this tour is complete that she will resume her regular posts here.


    Hoping someone can help me with some of the advice Nicole gave in this interview as well as in other interviews and in the Automatic Earth lifeboat – short term US treasuries.

    My current problem is that most of my ‘wealth’ is tied up in a Locked-In Retirement Plan (LIRA) which prevents me from accessing my money until I am retirement age (unlike an RRSP where you can take the money out whenever you want and only have to pay the taxes on it).

    I may be wrong, but it is my understanding I am not able to use the funds in my LIRA to invest in US treasuries through Treasury Direct. If anyone knows any different, please let me know.

    In addition, I came across this today:

    It suggests that Canadian T-bills can be purchased with US denominated dollars and still be considered Canadian content if held within an RSP.

    Does anyone know the risks I face by purchasing Canadian T-bills in US dollars versus purchasing US T-bills through Treasury Direct?

    My main goal in all of this is to avoid a collapsing Canadian dollar, so I would like to convert as much of my savings into US dollars while simultaneously increasing the safety of these savings if possible.



    A bit more information (from TD Bank) on Canadian treasury bills and US denominated dollar investments here:


    I would appreciate input from any people that understand this and can explain it to me. I don’t understand how we can possibly have a deflation here in the US if there is the Federal Reserve who has the ability to print as much money/credit as possible. Especially with the facts that: Benanke is a complete Keynesian; he is a “scholar” of the Great Depression (who completely misunderstands what caused the depression and what should’ve been done to avoid it and/or to revert it); he has stated over and over that a deflation would be the most destructive thing that could ever happen and he will never allow it to happen and will drop unlimited amounts of money from helicopters to prevent it. Plus, we have all other developed countries under the control of central banks and all on fiat currencies and all able to print as much money (or issue credit) as they feel is needed.

    How can a deflationary depression happen when these central banks have unlimited ability to inflate. It seems that hyper-inflation is the threat, not deflation.

    I invite anyone and everyone to please help me out on this because I understand that a tsunami is coming, but I want to prepare for the correct type of tsunami. Thanks in advance.


    Here’s how I see the tsunami hitting before we have hyperinflation. Greece was bailed out recently because US and other banks were willing to invest their “printed money” ( actually over-night loans from central sources like the Fed at one-tenth of one percent APR, rolled over daily in huge total amounts) in longer-term obligations of the Greek nation, mostly bearing interest at over 7% APR. Why, when Greece is obviously risky? Because the lenders feel they can bailed out if there is default, such bailing out coming from insurance companies via credit default swaps and from taxpayers who did such a bailout in 2008 and seem to be politically amenable to manipulation for the indefinite future. Also, the terms of the bailout of Greece require further austerity in the form of zero-growth government spending and zero-deficits in foreign trade balances (Greek workers being required to reduce wages so that labor costs of production of Greek goods and services will assure plus exports over imports). There are two huge weaknesses in this logic: (a) whether those zero limitations won’t be counterproductive, and (b) whether the confidence in politics of taxpayer bailouts can be maintained. As for (a), both zero limitations will work economically to reduce the ability of people in Greece to purchase goods and services, with loss of revenue from income taxes with which to pay off the bailout debts, and thus default on the debt becomes a tsunami trigger. As for (b), there is a great likelihood, especially with an attack on Iran or the OWS movement gaining traction, that the bailout banks won’t be as ready to cough up when Portugal, Spain, Italy, and France come looking for bailouts ala Greece. The form of the tsunami will depend whether it’s (a) or (b) that is the trigger, and on that I would guess there is an equally bad chance for either. I say “bad” because my son and grandson will likely be among the victims.


    alfbell, don’t fall for the bernank misdirection. think obama. they’re just trying to get savers to spend and debtors to borrow to facilitate extend and pretend for as long as possible. savers win in a deflation by buying up defaulted assets for pennies on the dollar – and the Western elite are savers. therefore there’s no incentive for them to destroy the currency yet. you should read the primers for the technical answer and let us know what you think. 🙂


    As a person who has tried to make changes to the environment I can tell you that we are at the mercy of God and I mean Jesus Christ.
    The public loves the environment but they would rather spend their useless time on things like watching nonsense on TV or something like that and than you have the force of money that is working full speed to bring down the efforts of those trying to do something good to the environment.


    Stoneleigh, I think you are grabbing the CDIC by the wrong end.

    The problem with holding ones cash under CDIC is not that that insurance will not be paid out but that one may not be able to access one’s cash in a timely maner. The last thing any government wants to see is a bank run and they will pay even if they have to do it in physical cash from an ink jet printer. My worry would be, for instance, in a case of systemic collapse, when one would not be able to use ones money to buy good assets before they became too expensive.


    When I saw the word environmentalist I assumed it was about nature and I said to myself what can Nicole say that can make a difference without even listening to the interview.
    I have just listened to the beginning part and I find this very helpful.
    Thanks to Nicole.


    All of us are thinking about the timing of when the unravelling of the system will happen and especially when it will effect them personally.
    Here in Canada I think that life will be as it is without any banks failing in 2012.
    I am saying this according to all the reading I have been doing here in TAE and a few other places like
    There is also Japan which is the 2nd biggest economy in the world that is about to go belly up and I am also taking that into account.

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