For starters, the Navy has followed right along with the prevailing political madness by adopting some...colorful new policies, to say the least. Not only that, but the pattern of gross overreactions and calculated neglect that I've both passively observed and personally experienced over the last two years have finally pushed me to the inevitable decision that it's time to move on with my life, and because of that I now look eagerly forward to a year and five days from now, when I will once again be a civilian. In light of my future unemployment, I've decided to talk to you today about a topic very near and dear to my heart: preparation.
There are several passages in the bible that deal with the importance of looking ahead and preparing for what's probably coming. Start with this one, then read this one and this one if you have more time. All of these passages point directly to the fact that a smart person will see the dark clouds on the horizon and alter their behavior accordingly, and the dumb ones will simply go on about their business as if everything is fine, and ultimately suffer. I will also stress that the second of those illustrations, taken from Matthew 25, comes immediately after Jesus had just explained to his disciples about the signs of the End of the Age. His point was that we must all be about the business of practical and material preparedness as we see that times are changing.
In my own personal life, that means that I have been very, very busy lately with the preparations necessary to transition out of the military. I've been writing resumes, scheduling transition classes, studying for my final language proficiency exams (which will influence the quality of jobs I can apply for on the outside), and doing lots of networking and research to figure out exactly where I want to land when the clock runs out on my steady paychecks 12 months hence.
In a broader sense though, I genuinely believe that the clock may be running out for all of us. Just as my comfortable, well-paid life as I know it is about to come to an end, I believe that our national time of ease and comfort which we have heretofore taken for granted is also winding down. History is replete with examples of how increased corruption and political infighting are symptoms of an empire on the brink of internal decay and eventual collapse. Although I reiterate my previous statements that I have no desire to take an active role in bringing about the downfall of our beloved United States, I do firmly believe that we will soon be the authors of our own destruction unless we experience a massive paradigm shift in the political, economic, and social arenas. I think we all more or less sense with growing concern that this ship of state might just be headed for a giant iceberg.
Just like a person preparing for unemployment, a person preparing for potential social upheaval also bears a certain responsibility to take action on their own behalf in order to prevent personal calamity. First of all, you need to make sure that you're not actively doing anything to contribute to said downfall. If you're personally supporting either of the two abominations that are currently basking in the limelight of national media, you would do well to reexamine your life outlook.
Secondly, if you suspect as I do that problems may be looming on the national horizon, you should probably take some mitigating steps to ensure your own survival, up to and including gathering the necessary supplies to sustain yourself through personal unemployment and/or social upheaval. I've set aside a small amount of money each month to devote to stockpiling the supplies that I suspect I may need (food and groceries being a major one) in the future, because every dollar I spend today is a dollar I don't have to spend post-Navy.
An ounce of prevention, as was famously said, is worth a pound of cure. Every step that I take now to make my post-Navy transition easier is going to pay massive dividends on the backend. Likewise, any material preparations that you may deem necessary in light of the ominous future we face as a nation will likely be worth their weight in gold should anything ever happen in the future (and at the very least you'll save a lot of money on groceries as you eat through your stored supplies).
Does that sound paranoid? If so, then you clearly haven't read my 25 Theses.