Friday, July 10, 2009

Video of Public Lecture

This is a video of the public lecture I gave last month in Dublin, Ireland, the night before the opening of the Feasta Conference. Click here to watch.


subgenius said...

Massive thanks to all involved in making this available online!

Dr Doom said...

Bravo, Dmitry. I think as time goes forward, more Americans will seek your advice and the comfort your thoughts provide that they can get through this. I like your style and am duly impressed by your courage to state unpleasant realities.

Avi said...

Here's a mp3 version of Mr. Orlov's talk (13mb):

Anonymous said...

A lot to ponder, thank you, thank you, thank you.

Johannes Kotze said...

awesome! made my morning!

another said...

I know I'm greedy for asking, but is the Q&A session available anywhere?

More importantly:
Thank you, Dmitry for unapologetically laying out the future we can expect. I don't know why the English word "disillusioned" has always had a negative connotation. Illusions do not help us survive. A clear understanding of reality is what helps us survive. Thank you for providing it!

Don't know if I'll be able to make the transition myself at this point, but I do thank you for giving the younger Americans a chance to thrive in the world to come. My hope is that they will avail themselves of the opportunity.

Jason said...

Enjoyed this very much, very well-prepared. I was just sorry the questions from the floor weren’t included -– if they were filmed, could they be made available in a separate file?

I’m in the UK. I have to comment: for this lovely poetic east-west mirror-image superpowers thing (and also because it’s what he knows), Dmitry is talking about US collapse when clearly we are going to see industrial world collapse in general.

Europe can’t hold up if America collapses and world oil production peaked for Europe too. How does the model translate across?

The question of currency, for example, raised in this talk – how will the US adopt the euro as a currency to replace the dollar, when the euro fails simultaneously?

Has this been thought about? – specifically Dmitry’s model, and shifting it over to Europe? Obviously some elements are easy to factor over literally (gun crime will be less of a problem, food growing and salvage operations identical, gangland and family life variable, etc.) But are there any other unique issues or differences?

I know the Transition Town movement has taken off in some places (very good on the positive vision and the re-engagement with nature that Dmitry mentions at the end there), but that model is slightly different. I’m talking specifically about the translation of these particular ideas and issues of Dmitry’s across the pond.

Elise said...

Sorry I could not view your video,very disappointed. Even though I have Windows Mulitmedia player it defaults to Quicktime and just sits there and won't download the whole file. Would you post it on Youtube?

Utilitopia said...

"There's this beast on television, named Suze Orman..."

Oh, how I laughed when I heard that.

Is the Q&A available?

Thanks Avi for the MP3!

Anonymous said...

the free player should handle mov files fine

Anonymous said...

Dmitry, I am a physician who realized way back in 1999, after 10 years in medical practice, that we Americans were headed for collapse. I realized that a society that cannot handle a mosquito bite will not survive long-term in its present form. I realized that a family thrown into complete panic and chaos resulting in a desperate visit to the ER for free care at 12 midnight—over their baby’s diaper rash, no less—simply will not survive.... In our present soft, corrupt, marshmallow society, a medical molehill is a cause for life meltdown. Most people I see aren’t sick, but want to be. I would estimate 75% of all patients now seek medical care for some sort of secondary gain—time off work, the entertainment of being in a clinic or ER, narcotics, attention from their families, whatever… Some patients come for medical care every other day or so! They are Medicaiders or Medicarers faking chest pain with nothing to do, so we provide them with a social outlet… I now see 18 year old men—unemployed dropouts-- faking back pain trying to get on permanent disability--and trying to cadge a few Vicodin or Percocet to sell on the black market. When Army officers—not enlisted—come in to be seen for paper cuts, you know the country is done for! People whose life is totally unmanageable due to a case of the sniffles are a dime a dozen. And then there are all the weird people who are getting even weirder, such as those with burning pain on the tops of the 2nd and 4th toes of both feet which started 15 minutes ago—yes that was a real patient just last week. After witnessing an endless procession of people like that year after year and increasing, I realized that the US has only one way to go: down

Even my own family... When my mother asked my niece, her 11 year old granddaughter, what she was going to be when she grew up, my niece responded, "I'm not going to be anything. I am going to wait for my inheritance!" When my brother, her father, was told of his daughter's response, unbelievably, he said, "Mom is lying. My daughter didn't say that." Societal rot permeates every family now.

I was fascinated by the Russians who supposedly managed to live without an income. In retrospect, this is only partly true, as people living without an income are always living off Other People’s Money. There is no free lunch. The Russians lived on their parents’ and grandparents’ money, as those were the people who paid—directly or indirectly--into the State budget to construct the Soviet housing and transportation infrastructure which remained intact during collapse. In the US, medicaiders and medicarers and SSIers live off working people’s money. Adult nonworking children living in their parents’ garage are still sucking on mommy and daddy’s teat. These are all dishonest ways of living and are not destined to last long-term. Our goal should be to live honestly on a tiny income, gained from whatever scrounging around we can find post-collapse… and NOT to live on OPM. So, assuming I survive the initial chaos, I'm looking forward to finding patients post-collapse who actually want to get well, not people who want to stay sick forever! Dr. E

Anonymous said...

Elise, if you have Quicktime try it again, it took AGES to load for me and I thought it wasn't soing anything, and, hey presto, it suddenly started.

Yeah, how about the question and answer session??!!

Anonymous said...

Elise: "Sorry I could not view your video,very disappointed. Even though I have Windows Mulitmedia player"

The video is fine. I'm on GNU/Linux and KMPlayer runs it without any problems whatsoever.

Try downloading the whole file first before running it.

Dmitry, thanks for the video.

Ellen said...

Anonymous who talked about "other people's money" - what you're really talking about is living off "other people's energy." Which is the law of the jungle that all life forms must follow -- even walking, talking, socialized life forms like ourselves. "Income" is simply "incoming energy." Most human societies have translated "energy" into "wealth" or as we understand it, "money."

In the natural world, there are hunters, harvesters and parasites. Everyone's either hunting, harvesting, or sucking off someone else. You really can't get around it.

Most Americans are being sucked off of, even as they believe they are sucking off of someone else. The question that we all have to ponder is decoupling ourselves (as individuals) from this current system and finding new ways to either hunt, harvest or suck. Your solution probably will not be mine. And in those individual choices lie the ultimate demise of the current system that we know.

Bruce Darrell said...

This video has become so popular that it caused a 100x spike in the download from the Feasta server and we hit our download limit of 150GB after 3 days!

Quite the community. It really caught us off guard and we have had to make the file unavailable as we cannot afford the charges.

I have rushed and made the video available on at:

This should also solve the compatibility issues.

I will look into getting the Q+A session uploaded as well.

We hope to get recordings of the rest of the conference up on the Vimeo site ASAP, including another presentation by Dmitry.

Thanks again, Dmitry, for coming over to Dublin and taking part in the conference.


Anonymous said...

Excellent and lucid presentation. Apropos of the delusion that still pervades the US, I urgently recommend the article "What Economy?" by Paul Craig Roberts on today's Counterpunch:

The scenario painted by Roberts (he has done it for several years) is very close to what Dmitry has been talking about. Forget about "the economy" and try to fend for yourself!

Pangolin said...

How droll, a rant by an "emergency room physician" bagging his lazy patients. Omitted is the fact that the mandarins of the AMA has given him and his pals exclusive license to deliver medical care. The poor patients have little choice but to see prigs like this even if they should be referred at triage to a physician's assistant, nurse-practioner or EMT for treatment.

One of the causes of the current collapse is excessive specialization's, certifications, licenses and sinecures. It takes eight years of college before you can apply a butterfly bandage without risking jail time. For at least six years of that education your M.D. never saw an actual patient. So if young Dr. Anon. turns out to be a total misanthrope after this massive investment we're stuck with him. If he's partial to Pharma-corp sales-whores and prescribes drugs like M&M's were still stuck with him.

(Just to touch on how big Pharma-corp screws everything up; honey is more effective than any topical anti-biotic ointment made. google: honey, wound treatment)

It's a system that sucks up one-sixth of the value of the U.S. economy. That's about four times what it should cost. Which may be why there are no jobs available. Somehow, Cuba manages to provide better medical outcomes than the US for a tenth the per capita cost. They have free neighborhood clinics where the doctors know their patients. As good capitalists we should contract our medical system over to Cuba for the lower prices. We don't for some reason.

Back to your regularly scheduled dystopia.

Anonymous said...

The US does not practice capitalism, nor does it practice free trade. Free trade would require free movement of labor across borders. Instead we hear the shameful expression "illegal aliens". The big accumulations of capital in the US happened because of a) slave labor b) rape and pillage of colonies all over the world to obtain raw materials and essentially slave labor. It is not the result of "free trade".

On the original post, it is true that people have become ridiculously needy and think they can't disinfect and fix a cut themselves, but medicine in the US is a racket. No other word describes it. Its purpose is not to treat and cure people but to make a maximum profit out of a captive customer. Those two purposes are incompatible.

Seani said...

I have a concern with your belief that suburban back yards have the ability to grow food. In older neighbourhoods, this is probably the case, however in newer suburbs, the first thing developers did to the farmland was take away the topsoil for sale. The foundation clay was then dug out and leveled on location. Now, when homeowners want to improve their soil they need to buy yards and yards of topsoil from developers....

Meaning even if you wanted to grow food, your property will need a lot of new topsoil first.

Anonymous said...

Pangolin's comment spoke wisely to me, and the "ER Doctor" sounded more like a satire -- or at least that's what I hope it is, because I don't see a real cog-in-the-medwheel reading Dmitry Orlov... such a cog would likely want to destroy the message and messenger inasmuch as they (Orlov and his message) indicate that the med racket will collapse right along with everything else.

How can someone conclude that people are on their own ignorant about science & medicine, when a MD doesn't know those things without med school?

We Americans are ignorant as a lot because our public schools are pathetic -- they don't educate or inform children, instead they breed docile "citizens" who will not question or challenge their government. Is it any wonder such people get a hangnail and run to the emergency room?

American culture tells people that MDs are near to gods, if not actually being gods. Our "entertainment" says that, our "news" media say that, and for sure the MDs themselves trumpet their prowess.

Their only prowess, however, is in separating people from their money.

America is collapsing, and it is doing so because Americans are, on the whole, ignorant people, ill-informed people, uncritical thinkers when they think at all. Americans are encouraged to apply their intellectual talents toward making money rather than toward improving life for themselves and fellow Americans. They are sold a ruse which says, making money is how you improve your life. Why would such a cultural lesson be taught? It's because those who pull the strings in power want a particular populace --

Docile citizens who never question buccaneer capitalism-turned-fascism.


Dmitry Orlov's assessment is so accurate that I'm sure reading it, hearing it, understanding it are all painful tasks to most Americans. Most would prefer to ignore the truth because the truth is so radically different from the Legend of America that is taught in our public schools, offered by our infotainers, shouted by our politicians.

Pangolin said...

Sean- while you are quite right that the mess left in suburban back yards rarely contains more than mineral earth that can be corrected with materials at hand. The combination of biochar (ground, carbonized biomass) and human, erm, "waste" composted with any weeds, leaves or other plant matter will quickly turn bad soils into rich soils. Concerns about contamination are quickly solved by "solarizing" said compost. Or simply use the overly "sweet" soil to grow corn, sunflowers and sorghum.

Charles- The relevant equation is '35 teenagers and one adult.' Our caveman ancestors would have laughed themselves silly at the thought that this might be a functional relationship. It's the american high-school norm and a recipe for a no-thinking environment.

I have met M.D.'s with attitudes that bad or worse. They can entirely compartmentalize their hatred and contempt for patients, or the tenants of their rental houses, from any other concern in life. It's quite possible he can't see his place in furthering the general chaos and otherwise support's Orlov's hypothesis.

Otherwise I agree with your conclusions entirely. The health care system in the US is going down and all the kings horses and all the kings men, or Obama's, aren't going to fix it.

Anonymous said...

"Otherwise I agree with your conclusions entirely. The health care system in the US is going down and all the kings horses and all the kings men, or Obama's, aren't going to fix it."

Let me add that I don't think the US has a "health care system". They need to make one, it needs to be not for profit, and there is no need to reinvent the wheel... many countries have done it. Obama doesn't want to do it, though, and very few people in Congress and the Senate want to -- I have only heard Dennis Kucinich talk explicitly about having a healthcare system. The others want the pharmaceutical, hospital and medical rackets to "make concessions", which is of course a joke.

I notice the operative term put out by the propaganda machine is "overhaul"... they are going to make a lot of noise, spend a lot of money and get something very close to what we have now, that is, a nonexistent health care system.

I don't think Obama is stupid, so the conclusion is that he is part of the racket.

At this rate, the only think left of the American empire will be the media talking about how great it is.

Anonymous said...

Sean, you don't need a yard to grow food. You can have a lush garden on your rooftop or balcony using earthboxes that require very little space and water. Potting soil can be bought in any garden center!

Here's a great website for getting started:

Seani said...

I get and appreciate the comments, however, my comment was on collapse. If society collapses, we cannot count on Suburbs feeding themselves. There will be no soil at garden centers to have potted gardens (although this is a very positive idea). As well, there will be no time to regrow the soil, (again a very positive idea).

Dave said...

Dmitry, I studied Russian quite a few years ago. I traveled to the Soviet Union once back in April of 86. Yes, actually during the Chernobyl event believe it or not. I work in the same profession as you and I meet many interesting Russians. I've had fun with my Russian friends over the years sometimes pretending that I was Russian and I'd pull the wool over even other Russians eyes. My vocabulary is so bad that the game never lasted long though. I formed a great respect for former Soviets early in my life. I've drawn many conclusions about human nature from what I witnessed happen with the Soviet Union. Before I heard anything about you I formed my own theories and I started telling my friends and family about what I thought would transpire in the U.S. With this great invention, partly Russian I might add,, I decided that I would search out people that shared my my main theory since I surely couldn't be alone. I stumbled on some of your work a few months ago and after going through quite a bit of it I must say that I agree with you 100%. You have validated my own perceptions completely. I admire your work and I want to thank you for getting your ideas out there for the intellectual community to be stunned by and ponder. For years I've said, when talking about the United States, that we are not exempt from collapse. I didn't just mean collapse in an economic sense but in terms of a collapse of society in general. Until recently I pretty much put the time of our societies collapse at about 2050. For the last 10 or so years I've been a closet survivalist, just in case it came sooner. On the surface you wouldn't know it but I've had a hidden agenda with most things that I do or purchase. My pickup truck is really a bug out vehicle. My ATV is really my bug out truck dingy. My firearms aren't really for hunting, although possibly. My gardening isn't really because I just like fresh vegetables. My generator isn't just for the hurricanes. My wood stove isn't just to keep my bills down. I watched the value of the Ruble deteriorate. I watched the value of the Mexican Peso deteriorate. Soon we will be watching the value of the dollar deteriorate. Stay safe and enjoy our still functioning society while it lasts. When people's unemployment benefits run out and the savings run dry and prison stops looking like such a bad place things will start getting very ugly. I saw the stock market crash coming and now I see the crash of U.S. society coming too.

Anonymous said...

Could you please provide your readers with a list of countries which might fare better than the US during a collapse? I'm curious about how smaller more sustainable countries might fare. Costa Rica, Iceland, Ireland, Uruguay, Chile and New Zealand are all places which come to mind...

Anonymous said...

"...list of countries which might fare better than the US during a collapse"

Plenty of land, water, forest is not completely destroyed, walkable towns.

peter31 said...

Hi Dmitry, thanks for your entertaining and informative thoughts on post-collapse society. I have read quite a lot of your stuff, and I have just downloaded the mp3 made available by Avi so I can listen to it on my iPod on my commute home. Any chance you could make more of the same available officially from your site?

Like Dr E, I'm a physician too - a family physician in Ontario, Canada, and everything he said really resonates with me. He didn't mention the 3am visit to the emergency room by the dipstick who can't sleep and wakes the duty physician up for a sleeping pill, or the 3am visit for threadworms, or the 3am visit by the potter who wonders if he has lead poisoning - all true examples from my own experience. (What is it with physicians and ClubOrlov?). Basically, most people lack self-reliance in most areas of life and have a poor post-collapse prognosis, medical and otherwise.

I really enjoy your work - please keep it up. Dr G. said...

You should consider making your Slope of Dysfunction a second post. One that's longer, and more explanatory. A tour of the internet suggests that people don't really understand what you're saying. The intermixing with the alternate planet component of the essay is just part of the problem.

Yes, I and all my oil pals get it. But no one else does.

What I've found is that it's actually worth it to take 5-10 passes over a concept like this, so that a general audience gets it.

As I remarked upthread, it's an important insight you have here and although I currently assign a much smaller risk to its occurrence in the next 2-5 years, it strikes me as a highly competitive model for how the ultimate collapse plays out. (Yes I think we are in the penultimate collapse, globally, right now).



tom.michaluk said...

Love your writings Mr. Orlov, but what's with the puny crowds of seemingly infirm-gentle-folk at your engagements?! I look forward to you being a respected bobblehead on CNN!