All polls indicate that 75% of the western world believes that the current system is going to collapse catastrophically. 

Trust Artists --the true visionaries. They've seen the Mad Max Postman coming, and written it into modern legend. Ordinary men on the corner, polled on what they saw coming, answered, ---just for starters---

Global warming, ozone depletion, even worse in 2005 than last year...algae depletion in ocean due to toxic seawater, also simultaneous deforestation (both of these causing a total lack of oxygen, hence our suffocation). They foresaw the lack of water. By 2025 demand for water will be 50% greater than the global fresh water supply. 

There was hindisght too, like the 25% loss of global topsoil in the last 50 years, the pervasive pollution, an exponentially growing human population, 6 billionth child born and 2 billion of those people dependent on industrially created nitrogen fertilizers for their food and the soil is fresh out of tilth having been superfarmed for two centuries so food could get plenty scarse. 

Then they all knew about JOB depletion. The world will have to create 30 million jobs per year for the next 50 years to employ the growing population and just isn't doing so as people can't afford the expensive toys being made and are simply using their old stuff. 

Then there's oil production peaking peaking in about 2005 so we can't drive cars on gas somewhere mid through the 21st century. Then the loss of ocean fisheries, also quite imminent. These have been ruthlessly overfished by those trawling barges with freezer holds, the size of modern cities. 

Then there's the strong number of genocidal civil wars in third world countries like Timor, Rwanda, Indonesia, Mexico, Guatemala, where the death squads kill entire villages, in Timor a third of the population murdered and after the U.N. soldiers leave, a U.S. supported 'monkey' (called POPULAR SUPPORTED but 'taint so ) ascends the throne ---seemingly just released from some dungeon where the former regime had him.

So OKAY, we have starvation, war, military puppets ---then, the fourth horseman, the plagues. Mad Cow disease in the meat supply, collapsed immune systems in modern city dwellers, chronic fatigue requiring Starbucks medication. A cancer endemic, killer flus, and AIDS, crib death, a generation of oldsters going with Alzheimers, and babies with leukemia, brain tumors, asthma, allergies. Then, the AIDS thing, 2 million dead in USA, 20 million infected with AIDS in Africa, A million children orphaned, (many of them with the disease). Everywhere in the world, there's a a 20 year drop in life expectancy, a similar drop in life expectancy in Russia. There are antibiotic resistant bacterial strains to all kinds of diseases, and this in scarsely 75 years of using penicillin. 

There is also a huge, expanding underclass in the "advanced" countries, triple the jail population of other days, a wildly speculative economy on a global scale with an overvalued stock market bring the world economy to the brink of a major, planetary depression with endemic joblessness and much of this aggravated by this whole Y2K business. Like none other, the case of the two, missing COBOL DIGITS shows us what fragility man has constructed for himself.

What we seem to have is a "system" rendered increasing brittle by the elimination of redundancies in the name of "productivity" and "competitiveness", mega-mergers making an already brittle system even more so. And last but not least, the muscular hand of the IMF squeezing every starving third world country into productivity which is really slave labor at bottom market, non-union prices. And hey, a few first world countries, doing the same. Everyone we know owes our soul to the company store! And there's no tenure or pension safety. We're all a paycheck away from homelessness.

Every one of these little "problems" has to be considered serious. Together they will be devastating. If the wave crests, life in the city could become hazardous. People need to have back up plans, alternatives. We are in the position of having to create a global "emergency preparedness plan". And failing a global one, what's your own family's plan? Do your relatives and you have a vacation cottage 50 miles from a population center with an orchard and septic tank and water source? A solar generator? A tribe of goats for milk, cheese, meat and fertilizer? A flock of chickens for eggs?A few bags of chickpea, wheat, soy, corn, vegie seed? NO? Why ever not? You really need that QVC brooch? That Lexus? That S.U.V? More than you need LIFE?