Carborendum

A World Without Electronics

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Apparently, we seem to be a world dependent upon electronics.  I almost want to be Amish. 

My daughter was waiting at work for us to pick her up.  We were quite late because we were stuck in traffic.  She had to go back into the office to ask to borrow the phone to see if we were on our way.  When she did so, they were surprised that she did not have a cell phone.  They let her borrow the landline.

When she got off the phone, a coworker asked her if she at least had a GPS unit in the car.  No.  She did not.  So, how did you find your way to work when you drove here the other day?

Yes.  We're becoming a society so dependent on the internet and electronics that we're forgetting how to do things on our own.  We're forgetting how to think anymore.  We're not aware of our surroundings anymore.

People are beginning to stare at my family when we bring our hard copy scriptures to church.  People at work wonder why I print things out instead of simply working with markup tools on the screen.

Take away our electronics and we're done for as a nation.

Edited by Carborendum

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4 hours ago, Carborendum said:

Apparently, we seem to be a world dependent upon electronics.  I almost want to be Amish. 

My daughter was waiting at work for us to pick her up.  We were quite late because we were stuck in traffic.  She had to go back into the office to ask to borrow the phone to see if we were on our way.  When she did so, they were surprised that she did not have a cell phone.  They let her borrow the landline.

When she got off the phone, a coworker asked her if she at least had a GPS unit in the car.  No.  She did not.  So, how did you find your way to work when you drove here the other day?

Yes.  We're becoming a society so dependent on the internet and electronics that we're forgetting how to do things on our own.  We're forgetting how to think anymore.  We're not aware of our surroundings anymore.

People are beginning to stare at my family when we bring our hard copy scriptures to church.  People at work wonder why I print things out instead of simply working with markup tools on the screen.

Take away our electronics and we're done for as a nation.

But that’s only because we don’t have scouts anymore either... or do we?

Anyway... we just had a family reunion in my mom’s hometown in the Philippines and my great aunt was telling us stories of how she thought we’re done for as a generation because we don’t know how to cook without a kerosene stove/oven anymore (she’s a baker, best bread in the entire island).  Now, where we’re at, there are no electric stoves because it costs an arm and a leg to run it so kerosene stoves are the latest and greatest tech.  I’ve been hand washing all my clothes too.  No tech here for laundry.

And then I wasn’t able to attend Church because the closest branch is 11 km away.  That’s SEVEN miles.  That’s the same distance from my house in Florida to the mall which is a quick hop and skip away.  People jog that distance for exercise.  But nope, didn’t make it to Church because the public transportation that goes there only passes by twice a day and all the private vehicles all went to the Catholic Church.  I called the branch president on Saturday evening asking him if there are people from my side of town that go to the branch so I can hitch a ride.  He said yes... they’re already at the Church.  They walked there and slept at Church so they’re not late for fast and testimony meeting.  They commit to at least attending 1st Sunday even as they miss all other Sundays.

And there’s no address either.  I asked the branch president what’s the church address and he gave me the town name.  That’s the same thing with my cousins’ houses.  So my GPS is worthless.  There are no street names.  So, to go to Church, I’d have had to go to the town center (every town here has the town hall, the public market, and the Catholic Church forming the town center) and ask for directions.  But actually, Mormon.org has the lat/long address for the Church so I actually got to use my handy dandy GPS to map it.

Anyway, times like these I miss my tech!

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6 hours ago, Carborendum said:

Apparently, we seem to be a world dependent upon electronics.  I almost want to be Amish. 

My daughter was waiting at work for us to pick her up.  We were quite late because we were stuck in traffic.  She had to go back into the office to ask to borrow the phone to see if we were on our way.  When she did so, they were surprised that she did not have a cell phone.  They let her borrow the landline.

When she got off the phone, a coworker asked her if she at least had a GPS unit in the car.  No.  She did not.  So, how did you find your way to work when you drove here the other day?

Yes.  We're becoming a society so dependent on the internet and electronics that we're forgetting how to do things on our own.  We're forgetting how to think anymore.  We're not aware of our surroundings anymore.

People are beginning to stare at my family when we bring our hard copy scriptures to church.  People at work wonder why I print things out instead of simply working with markup tools on the screen.

Take away our electronics and we're done for as a nation.

I don’t think it is all bad :)

My ability to find talks and find quotations from prophets has never been better. 

I can find a place to eat in seconds.

Just yesterday I was looking for a place to get pants (as I’m size 34x36, a size that exists only in fiction books). My grandpa grabbed his phone book and began looking through it. Well I found a bunch before he found even one haha.

Our ability to communicate has never been better... but it also has never been worst ;) 

Edited by Fether

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23 hours ago, Carborendum said:

Apparently, we seem to be a world dependent upon electronics.  I almost want to be Amish. 

My daughter was waiting at work for us to pick her up.  We were quite late because we were stuck in traffic.  She had to go back into the office to ask to borrow the phone to see if we were on our way.  When she did so, they were surprised that she did not have a cell phone.  They let her borrow the landline.

When she got off the phone, a coworker asked her if she at least had a GPS unit in the car.  No.  She did not.  So, how did you find your way to work when you drove here the other day?

Yes.  We're becoming a society so dependent on the internet and electronics that we're forgetting how to do things on our own.  We're forgetting how to think anymore.  We're not aware of our surroundings anymore.

People are beginning to stare at my family when we bring our hard copy scriptures to church.  People at work wonder why I print things out instead of simply working with markup tools on the screen.

Take away our electronics and we're done for as a nation.

In my opinion, the examples you gave amplify my life.  While I certainly prefer paper scriptures, I can't deny that the Gospel Library app makes studying SO much easier.  Not just the highlighting, but the referencing, indexing, etc puts everything right at my fingertips.  I can pull up something to study, then click right through to General Conference talks on the subject.  

With cell phones, if I'm stuck in traffic I can call ahead to let people know.  They aren't wasting their time waiting for me.  I can make phone calls on my long commute which allows me to spend less time at the office and more time with my family.

I'm no stranger to carrying a map pack in my car, but the GPS makes things MUCH faster and simpler.  I can find a store or the nearest gas station on my route without skipping a beat.

We extremely limit electronics in my home because they can be a huge wall to human interaction, though.

Edited by Grunt

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I just came home from a huge road trip. Without a GPS, it would have been incredibly difficult. 

I also was able to call LG and text her throughout the weekend. 

And I was able to listen to music/audiobooks in the car. 

And if the car broke down, I could call AAA and not wander aimlessly looking for a pay phone. 

Technology makes our lives much easier. Our ancestors have begged for things like this. 

There is an irony to writing about how much you dislike technology...on the internet. 

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15 minutes ago, MormonGator said:

There is an irony to writing about how much you dislike technology...on the internet.

But I don't believe Carb suggested any such thing. I got two points out of his OP:

1. Some technology is stupidificating us. I wholeheartedly agree with this, at least in the short term. When I want to go from Point A to Point B, I create a map in my head. Then I follow the map. If something interrupts my route, I reroute in my head. My oldest son -- an intelligent young man -- appears mostly devoid of the ability to map something out in his head. He is dependent on GPS. Without it, he's hard-pressed to find anything.

To be fair, the complaint of technology making us weak goes back to the dawn of time. Nibley claimed that the very acts of reading and writing were, long ago, decried as something that made people stupider, replacing their memory with marking tricks on slate or papyrus. And I think those ancients had a valid point, even if their overarching belief was wrong.

2. Technology is brittle and makes for a brittle infrastructure. I most assuredly wholeheartedly agree with this. Cascading power failures, the (admittedly overstated) threat of EMPs, server attacks, computer viruses, even the manmade creation of superbugs because people are too stupid or wicked or selfish or just plain ignorant to TAKE THEIR FREAKING MEDS UNTIL THEY'RE BETTER all witness to the brittle nature of our technological lives.

How does our planet support EIGHT BILLION PEOPLE? Answer: Petroleum. Take away petroleum, and you take away the diesel tractors that plow and plant, the petroleum-based fertilizers that cause an abundant harvest, and the petroleum-powered combines that reap the grain. You lose the trains that bring the food to the region and the trucks that transport it to the grocery stores. If the petroleum shuts completely down, two billion people (MINIMUM) die the first year. More thereafter. Petroleum is literally the lifeblood of our society. Is it any wonder that the tiny molten-salt-reactor contingent is so insistent? We have to have redundancy, and a lot of it, to safeguard our very lives. Petroleum has surely made our society, and the sudden lack of petroleum would just as surely destroy it.

Yes, our modern, failsafe world is exceedingly brittle, just waiting for one good sledge hammer strike to bring it down. Remember the foolishness of the denizens of Ammonihah.

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4 minutes ago, Vort said:

To be fair, the complaint of technology making us weak goes back to the dawn of time.

And to be fair, any complaint about technology on the internet is naturally flawed to some degree. It's like a college freshmen trying to sound intelligent and impress girls by "debating" if we exist or not. Which you can't do without existing in the first place. 

Edited by MormonGator

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It is interesting.  I still bring my scriptures to church, but I also bring a tablet.  With the church not printing out manuals anymore and everything being online they've basically forced people to turn to electronics.  I prefer hardcopy to be honest.

It does allow me to understand those who do NOT bring tablets and other items and even more so when I understand that some of them cannot even afford such things.  That the church expects it of people these days in some areas is kind of a strange new formation of Mormon culture that I do not feel entirely good about.

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Interesting thing... I just got done nagging my husband who is currently on the other side of the planet such that 9am here is 9pm there, because he did not refill the chicken feed in the chicken coop.  How do I know?  He had me on video while he goes doing whatever it is he’s doing and I’m doing whatever it is I’m doing when he passed by the coop.

 

So yeah, my husband is probably wishing tech is not that so advanced.  Haha.

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5 hours ago, JohnsonJones said:

It is interesting.  I still bring my scriptures to church, but I also bring a tablet.  With the church not printing out manuals anymore and everything being online they've basically forced people to turn to electronics.  I prefer hardcopy to be honest.

It does allow me to understand those who do NOT bring tablets and other items and even more so when I understand that some of them cannot even afford such things.  That the church expects it of people these days in some areas is kind of a strange new formation of Mormon culture that I do not feel entirely good about. 

The Church still makes the paper manuals, study guides, magazines, and such.  Local leaders still have the responsibility to determine the quantity needed and order them.  IMO, if there's a failure, it's local and not due to "The Church" expecting people to live beyond their means.

That said, it costs obscene amounts of money to ship paper around (it's a heavy product), and a lot of people would take the paper (perhaps to avoid looking like the kind of person who doesn't use them), but never use them / bring them to church meetings - in other words, they were wasting the tithes.  It makes sense to me that the Church wishes to minimize this expense and corresponding waste.  That's not the same as expecting people who cannot afford electronic devices, internet, or whatever, to go without.

If you know of someone who needs the paper materials, all they have to do is tell the ward clerk so that he can order them (or he can print out the PDF version and give them that - any more, class member manuals are just booklets, not manuals).

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18 hours ago, anatess2 said:

They walked there and slept at Church so they’re not late for fast and testimony meeting.

That is hard core!  I hope that I am that hard core should the need arise.  I think I am, we'll see!

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On 5/6/2018 at 9:23 AM, Carborendum said:

Take away our electronics and we're done for as a nation.

Sounds like a new crop of posters is ready for this book!

https://www.amazon.com/Second-After-John-Matherson-Novel/dp/0765327252

There are a ton of "EMP pulse wrecks America's power grid and here's what happens next" books out there.  But this one has been cited on the floor of Congress, and has a forward by Newt Gingrich.  

It's not pretty.  Y'all ought to pick up a copy and read it.

Edited by NeuroTypical

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2 minutes ago, Vort said:

When did this happen?

At least in part.  For Elder's Quorum and Relief Society there are no manuals printed anymore that I'm aware of.  When one has something they are bringing to council or discussing, invariably it seems that if you do not have a tablet, you do not have the materials they are talking about. 

Now, personally speaking, I am not going to mandate they make copies of it in the library, as that seems an over reach of authority and the Elder's quorum could always go to the higher up leadership for clarification anyways, but in the units I've been to recently, none of them made copies and the expectation is for people to look it up on their phone or tablets.

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33 minutes ago, NeuroTypical said:

Sounds like a new crop of posters is ready for this book!

https://www.amazon.com/Second-After-John-Matherson-Novel/dp/0765327252

There are a ton of "EMP pulse wrecks America's power grid and here's what happens next" books out there.  But this one has been cited on the floor of Congress, and has a forward by Newt Gingrich.  

It's not pretty.  Y'all ought to pick up a copy and read it.

I read this last year some time. I bet I checked it out based on your recommendation, NT. As a work of art, it was not Pulitzer material. As a cautionary tale about the brittleness of our infrastructure, I think it had some valuable ideas and insights, though probably vastly overstated -- almost a worst possible scenario, times three. As a Lord of the Flies-ish portrayal of desperate humanity descending into barbarism from a quiet catastrophe, with only the strong (and well-prepared) surviving, I think (or at least hope) it was overwrought.

Bottom line: If you're diabetic, pray for (a) no technology glitches, (b) a quick and painless death, or (c) bioengineered artificial pancreas technology.

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2 minutes ago, Vort said:

@JohnsonJones, FYI, it looks like the Church does indeed continue to print paper copies of its manuals. As @zil said, your ward or branch can order what's needed, or you personally can go buy it.

Those are institute manuals/study aids...NOT Priesthood manuals.  They aren't even the Sunday School study guide.

In addition, I DID Point out that this is NOT official church policy...but a NEW MORMON CULTURAL tendency.

Priesthood and Relief Society do NOT use manuals these days, hence they do not print manuals for them.  I suppose I should have been more specific in that original post...so I'll post it more specifically...

It is interesting.  I still bring my scriptures to church, but I also bring a tablet.  With the church not printing out manuals anymore for Priesthood and everything being online they've basically forced people to turn to electronics.  I prefer hardcopy to be honest.

I am well aware of the various manuals for some of the classes utilized within the LDS church...for example

Sunday School Manual

Primary Manuals

However, for Priesthood and Relief Society today, which most adults who are not teaching other classes should be, or attending in the third hour, the expectation today is that one has a tablet or phone in most of the units I have been in.  While I have a tablet, I'd always prefer if one makes copies of the talks and other items they are using rather than the automatic expectation that we use our phones or tablets.

However, for me to demand such in my unit I feel would be more of an unrighteous dominion or other terrible way to ask for people to do this.  I can sympathize with many who do not have a phone or tablet to utilize during these councils and feel that this is not necessarily a good thing that is being born out of the New Mormon Culture (not to be confused with actual church policies).

(and people wonder why I get long winded in writing at times.  If I do not, misunderstandings abound at times of what I mean and intended).

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1 hour ago, NeuroTypical said:

Sounds like a new crop of posters is ready for this book!

https://www.amazon.com/Second-After-John-Matherson-Novel/dp/0765327252

There are a ton of "EMP pulse wrecks America's power grid and here's what happens next" books out there.  But this one has been cited on the floor of Congress, and has a forward by Newt Gingrich.  

It's not pretty.  Y'all ought to pick up a copy and read it.

It's also fiction. I read that book too. Good thing the dude had a car from the 1960s without electronics in it, huh? 

 

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4 minutes ago, JohnsonJones said:
16 minutes ago, Vort said:

@JohnsonJones, FYI, it looks like the Church does indeed continue to print paper copies of its manuals. As @zil said, your ward or branch can order what's needed, or you personally can go buy it.

Those are institute manuals/study aids...NOT Priesthood manuals.  They aren't even the Sunday School study guide.

I guess I don't understand your point. We don't have Priesthood or Relief Society manuals any more, because we don't teach from manuals in those settings. We teach from talks at the most recent General Conference, which are available in print in the May and November issues of the Ensign.

As for Sunday School manuals, they are in print and available for purchase at the site I linked above (probably on a different page than the link).

6 minutes ago, JohnsonJones said:

In addition, I DID Point out that this is NOT official church policy...but a NEW MORMON CULTURAL tendency.

Again, I don't understand. Are you saying that what the Church offers in print and how it distributes paper manuals is a "cultural tendency" and not "official Church policy"?

8 minutes ago, JohnsonJones said:

However, for Priesthood and Relief Society today, which most adults who are not teaching other classes should be, or attending in the third hour, the expectation today is that one has a tablet or phone in most of the units I have been in.  While I have a tablet, I'd always prefer if one makes copies of the talks and other items they are using rather than the automatic expectation that we use our phones or tablets.

Okay, I think maybe this is what you're calling a "cultural tendency" -- the expectation that one will reference material on one's electronic device. My response is that this may well be true in some areas, but I have never experienced it. In my ward and places I have visited, paper manuals or other references are still welcome and sometimes provided.

10 minutes ago, JohnsonJones said:

However, for me to demand such in my unit I feel would be more of an unrighteous dominion or other terrible way to ask for people to do this.

Perhaps "demanding" such is too strong. Asking your quorum leader or bishop to order a few copies for the Luddites who don't have (or don't want to use) their phone or Ipad or whatever seems like a fine idea.

12 minutes ago, JohnsonJones said:

I can sympathize with many who do not have a phone or tablet to utilize during these councils and feel that this is not necessarily a good thing that is being born out of the New Mormon Culture (not to be confused with actual church policies).

If there really is a cultural expectation in some wards that people should/must use electronic devices to read lesson manuals, then I wholeheartedly agree with you. Maybe I have just been lucky never to have seen this.

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44 minutes ago, JohnsonJones said:

  For Elder's Quorum and Relief Society there are no manuals printed anymore that I'm aware of. 

There are no manuals (period).  The "manual" is General Conference.  If someone needs assistance with an Ensign subscription or copies of GC talks, they should see their bishop or another leader to request assistance.

44 minutes ago, JohnsonJones said:

Now, personally speaking, I am not going to mandate they make copies of it in the library, as that seems an over reach of authority and the Elder's quorum could always go to the higher up leadership for clarification anyways, but in the units I've been to recently, none of them made copies and the expectation is for people to look it up on their phone or tablets.

IMO, if you are in an area where the norm is for everyone to have a device and follow along there, and no one likes it when you hand them paper, but you yourself are an exception to this rule, you should tell the relevant leader that you need paper.  The relevant leader should then happily provide you paper (or direct you to the ward clerk if it's a manual / booklet you need) from that point forward.

The point being, that this is a local issue, easily solved with communication.  If leaders are oblivious to a need, there is nothing whatsoever wrong with pointing it out to them, and I see no reason to get too upset by it - most leaders are already a bit frazzled, in my experience; and most humans are oblivious to something - it just never occurs to them to consider one thing or another because said thing is too far from their own norm - innocent ignorance rather than willful [whatever].

24 minutes ago, JohnsonJones said:

Those are institute manuals/study aids...NOT Priesthood manuals.  They aren't even the Sunday School study guide.

https://store.lds.org/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Category3_715839595_10557_3074457345616706234_-1_Y_image_0

24 minutes ago, JohnsonJones said:

With the church not printing out manuals anymore

Ah, you mean "With the Church not creating manuals anymore..."  BIG difference.

24 minutes ago, JohnsonJones said:

they've basically forced people to turn to electronics

I disagree.  If there is any force, it's coming from locals, not from "The Church".  And it is less likely "force" and more likely "lack of awareness".  (More below.)

24 minutes ago, JohnsonJones said:

the expectation today is that one has a tablet or phone in most of the units I have been in.

There are sisters in my ward who bring their hard copy of the Ensign.  As someone who teaches frequently, I can honestly say that I expect the following, nothing more or less (and I believe this is true of the others who teach in my ward):

  • Prepare before you come (preferably by having already read the lesson scriptures or talk)
  • Bring scriptures
  • Bring a copy of the talk we're discussing

I could not care less whether that's paper or electronic, nor any other detail.

24 minutes ago, JohnsonJones said:

While I have a tablet, I'd always prefer if one makes copies of the talks and other items they are using rather than the automatic expectation that we use our phones or tablets. 

I suspect the amount of waste involved in doing it as if everyone wanted it, rather than the small percentage who cannot afford an Ensign subscription is too great to consider a wise use of the tithes.  Why waste the tithes printing copies for everyone (when most don't want it) rather than helping those who need help?  Just so those who need help don't have to ask?

Edited by zil

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@Vort, thank you.  That is what I was saying.

@Grunt, @MormonGator, @Fether,

I was not decrying technology.  I was not decrying the use of technology.  I was decrying the dependence on technology. 

What I think is that while we can and SHOULD use the latest tools at our disposal to obtain our righteous goals, I find it difficult to accept how dependent we've become on them to the point that without such tools, we are completely incompetent to perform 90% of the tasks that we need to get done.  I also wonder why we need to use electronics for virtually everything.

That's why I mentioned my daughter's co-worker.  She was so dependent on a GPS, that she couldn't even fathom how to drive from point A to B without one.  Do you honestly believe that is a good thing?

Refrigerators now have cameras and monitors to view what's in there without opening the door "to save energy".  Really?  Do we have to?  Back up cameras are now being pushed to be standard on all vehicles.  More money we have to pay even when we never needed or wanted a back up camera.

I appreciate being able to get scriptures and conference talks and manuals on my cell phone or tablet.  That is not the problem.  It is that we don't even know how to read hard copy scriptures anymore.  Some of the youth know how to click on the hyperlinks for the footnotes and cross-references.  They don't know how to look them up in a real book.  The art of properly opening a real book to preserve the binding is all-but-lost on this generation.

For every piece of technology I usually ask a couple questions 1) Do I need it?  2) How much benefit do I get out of it compared to how I'm doing without it right now?  For some things there is no question that I can do MANY things much more easily with electronics.  But other things only provide marginal benefit for quite an expense.  And if part of that expense is being rendered powerless to do without electronics, I really have to wonder if it is worth the price.

As an engineer, there are some calculations and analyses that I can do in a day or so.  But without electronics, it would take me a month.  No question that this is a major benefit.  But reading a book electronically vs reading it on paper?  What????  With e-books, at least it is cheaper and we can get it right away.  Certainly beneficial.  But what are we losing?

If we use these tools, great.  I'm sure there's some benefit to it, or you wouldn't be using it.  But some things can really be done better the old fashioned way.  And, I believe, it should be done the old fashioned way.

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@NeuroTypical-Regarding an EMP, while I admit they are a potential issue for future warfare, I'm more "worried" about the issues we don't see. On 9/10/2001 very few people were worried about planes flying into buildings. It's not the bullet with your name on it that worries me, it's the one that says "To whom it may concern" 

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1 minute ago, Carborendum said:

@Vort, thank you.  That is what I was saying.

@Grunt, @MormonGator, @Fether,

I was not decrying technology.  I was not decrying the use of technology.  I was decrying the dependence on technology. 

 

I understand totally. You raise some good points @Carborendum

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1 hour ago, NeuroTypical said:

Sounds like a new crop of posters is ready for this book!

https://www.amazon.com/Second-After-John-Matherson-Novel/dp/0765327252

There are a ton of "EMP pulse wrecks America's power grid and here's what happens next" books out there.  But this one has been cited on the floor of Congress, and has a forward by Newt Gingrich.  

It's not pretty.  Y'all ought to pick up a copy and read it.

Thanks for the recommendation.  I haven't read it.  But my main question about these types of books is about the triggering event.

I basically understand what would happen if we had all our electronics out.  I'm a pretty hardcore prepper.  But I wonder about the event actually happening.  I know all about the starfish prime test.  And I know and understand all the principles behind how EMPs work.

What I don't quite accept the idea that a simple device is going to render the entire country without power and burn out all our electronics.  So, when I hear about books like this, I kinda question the premise first.  Then I might actually enjoy the book.  I read Patriots after all.  I didn't find it at all realistic.  But I found it enjoyable reading.  And there were some interesting hurdles that they had to get over which did seem realistic.

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3 minutes ago, Carborendum said:

I was not decrying technology.  I was not decrying the use of technology.  I was decrying the dependence on technology. 

FWIW, I understood that from the start.

Also FWIW, I find it baffling that anyone can follow a GPS and yet not follow a map.  A GPS shows you a map.  It's not that hard. :rolleyes:

5 minutes ago, Carborendum said:

Refrigerators now have cameras and monitors to view what's in there without opening the door "to save energy".

Because cameras don't need energy. :itwasntme:

5 minutes ago, Carborendum said:

Back up cameras are now being pushed to be standard on all vehicles.

OK, now this is a problem.  Everyone should be taught how to operate a vehicle in reverse.  I never pull forward into a parking space, nor my garage.  Being able to drive backward is a very useful skill.  Especially if you want to do a J turn. ;)   Even more useful is knowing where your car begins and ends (and where the objects around you begin and end).

9 minutes ago, Carborendum said:

The art of properly opening a real book

 

 

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