Participants: Dave, Fred, Sara, also Bernard
Discussion and recommendations:
The idea was to imagine what is likely--and also desirable--in a general way, on the topic of a roof overhead. My idea in posing the question is that when jobs go away, so does the house-and-commute-to-work. What happens instead?
Of course, nobody knows. But the discussion that spun off this question was wide-ranging and fun. Joblessness and or homelessness is already not a hypothetical for some of us, so there was interest in practical skills.
In looking for a new workskill, what to look for? Simple, practical, locally useful seems good. Can timebanking and the coming LETS sytem be of help for connecting skills and needs? Tax issues exist, but are still manageable.
When one thinks of crafts people, one thinks of working at home, which implies having a home. This is not impossible as in some cases banks are not evicting people for fear of vandalism to empty properties.
If you are already homeless and don't know where you will be each night, what can you do? How can you keep or practice a trade? Finding a niche is needful. In this context we should remember the UXA which existed during the Great Depression in Oakland California and had eventually 1500 members living outside the above-ground economy through mutual help.
Are we too high tech? How do you step back to a simpler, more reliable technology?
Dimitri Orlov's writings on the collapse of the Soviet Union are one of our main guides. In the US however, we can expect an attempt to segregate the jobless from the "still okay." So we will have to deal with that. But it may or may not work.
Project A: Build a cob structure, for reskilling and community utility.
Project B: Learn skills of salvage, scavange, and repair.
Project A has already attracted some interest, and will probably happen. Project B is currently still theoretical.