Thursday, January 5, 2012

Stoneleigh to share priceless knowledge

A year ago, Transition Barrie and GEAR hosted energy consultant and financial analyst Nicole Foss to a packed crowd at Georgian College to offer her perspective on the global financial and energy crisis that we currently see unfolding.
Nicole, who writes under the pen-name ‘Stoneleigh’ on website The Automatic Earth, brings a wealth of knowledge about the continuing sovereign debt crisis and the impact of unsustainable energy policies.
Based on a farm near Ottawa where she and her partner are preparing off-grid self-sufficiency to weather the coming storm, Nicole has been speaking all over North America, Europe and Asia on the global financial situation and its correlation to the energy crisis looming in our not-too-distant future. Parallels between energy subsidies and financial bubbles teach important lessons, both in how we arrange our systems and how we pay for them.
Her analysis suggests we have developed an unsustainable credit bubble over the past 30 years that must eventually burst. Many of the forecasts Nicole made here last year are already playing out on the global stage. Europe’s debt crisis stumbles from bad to worse, the American position worsened by an administration hostage to partisan gamesmanship. Meanwhile, special interests continue to drive energy policy.
Foss outlines the circumstance that led to this situation both from a financial and resource perspective and lays out her interpretation of the likely outcome using past market crashes as models for market reaction.
She then offers her perspective on ways to reduce and prepare for the impact of what she predicts will be a correction more severe than the Great Depression. Individuals and communities that take steps now to prepare for the effects of debt saturation and resource scarcity stand a much better chance to control their own financial destinies.
Canadians have so far escaped much of the fallout of this global crisis, but it will catch up with us. We are a resource-based economy, importing much of our necessities via lengthy supply chains. With a global economy that runs on credit, a bursting bubble will cause almost all commerce to halt, a worst-case scenario averted (or delayed) in 2008 only through massive bailouts and support of failed financial institutions in the USA.
Please join us next Tuesday, January 10th at 7PM at Barrie’s Southshore Centre to hear Stoneleigh’s update. A $5 donation is appreciated. For tickets, Call Mike at 705.721.6867 or email Karen at
Given the complexity of the situation and the conflicting messages broadcast through various media, hearing a well-informed and unbiased analysis of the events that will have increasing impact on our personal lives is a valuable investment of time.

Written for my Root Issues column in the Barrie Examiner, published under the title "Be informed in the face of looming collapse"

Erich Jacoby-Hawkins is a director of the Ontario School of Economic Science and Earthsharing Canada. 

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