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A Self-Sufficient Lifestyle Is A Viable Alternative To The Current Social Madness

Updated on January 16, 2014

Some Questions for You

Let me ask you if this sounds familiar. You eagerly await the arrival of your income tax refund. Finally the day comes and the automatic transfer is made. You make your calculations and begin paying off some of the debt that has accumulated over the past year. Happy you are and you celebrate by taking the family out to dinner, but within two months the tax refund is gone and the debt begins to once again increase.

Or how about this scenario?

The mid-term elections are upon us once again, and you begin to diligently study the candidates in hopes of finding one who stands for the beliefs you hold…but….there is a nagging notion deep in your brain that it will make no difference who you vote for because all politicians, Democrat, Republican or Independent, seem to be bought and paid for by Big Business and your interests are the furthest thing from their minds.

Or try this one on for size.

You go grocery shopping and spend an inordinate amount of time picking and choosing at the store, not only because every penny counts and you can’t quite make that grocery budget stretch far enough, but also because you worry that the food you are buying is not safe for your family.

Welcome to the madness of 2014.

We have trouble my friends, right here in River City, and River City is any city that you live in, whether it be in jolly old England, or the United States, or Bolivia, Perth or Shanghai. The scales have shifted away from us, and we simply don’t have the tools to alter that shift. We are, in fact, bit players in a much-bigger play. We are the worker bees who will forever service the Queen. We are the little cogs in a massive machine that threatens daily to chew us up and spit us out, just one more casualty on the road to “progress.”

How’s that for some bad news?

Now for some good news: it doesn’t have to be that way. We can simply decide that we are not going to play that game ever again. We can pick up our marbles and declare our independence from the madness that surrounds us.

We can begin to move towards a life of self-sufficiency.

Growing our own vegetables
Growing our own vegetables | Source

What’s This Self-sufficiency Stuff You Are Talking About?

Well I’m glad you asked. Self-sufficiency is moving forward to a better life. Self-sufficiency is a refusal to follow the path of greed and consumerism that has eaten our nations alive. Self-sufficiency is accepting responsibility for what we do and don’t do, rather than being an insignificant statistic tossed about by the vagaries of Madison Avenue. Self-sufficiency is seeking a higher standard of living, adopting a correct attitude about nature, and controlling our own futures.

Self-sufficiency is exactly what it sounds to be, people living better lives, simpler lives and healthier lives.

No, you do not have to own a twenty-acre homestead in the wilds of Alaska to be self-sufficient. Every single time a home owner chooses to grow their own vegetables in the back yard rather than spend money on the latest creation by Monsanto, they are practicing self-sufficiency. Every single time a city-dweller raises chickens for fresh eggs they are practicing self-sufficiency. Every single time a housewife mends her own clothes rather than buy the latest from Sachs, and every single time a man does a DIY car repair they are practicing self-sufficiency.

We begin small and move upward from there.

Raising our own chickens
Raising our own chickens | Source

Why Are Not More People Doing This?

Whatever I suggest here is pure supposition on my part, but I’ll toss out a few ideas just for the fun of it.

Slowly but surely times have changed. As the 20th Century faded from view and the 21st Century became a reality, we have become more and more a convenience society. We have turned away from the “can do” spirit of old and embraced the “let someone else do it” way of life. Mom and dad both have jobs, and there isn’t time to do the little things like repair the washer, so we pay $75 per hour for a repairman to do it. Bone-tired at the end of the work week, nobody feels like building that chicken coop. Changing the oil on the car is a dirty job, and who the hell has the time to can fruits and vegetables in the Fall?

I also suspect that there are millions of people who are sitting on their hands and praying to their gods that somehow the economy will magically improve, all the while knowing in their hearts that there is not a prayer of it happening. They blame the politicians and they blame the corporations, but it never dawns on them to blame themselves, for they are all part of the system and the system is broken.

We have deluded ourselves into believing that the current economic blueprint is the only blueprint for success, quoting a history that has passed us by and believing that old theories are just as valid today as they were thirty years ago when living was so much easier.

When one percent of the populace controls the majority of the wealth, something is wrong.

When prices continue to rise and income stagnates, something is wrong.

When the price of national wealth is the rape and pillage of the earth, something is wrong.

When tens of millions live below the poverty line and millions more are homeless, something is wrong.

When those who control the wealth use that wealth to purchase favorable legislation from those who govern, something is wrong.

When jobs are shipped overseas to increase the profit line, something is wrong, and when countrymen turn on countrymen blaming the miseries on each other, something is wrong.

And when hard-working people devote four decades of their lives to a lifestyle that leaves them broken and hopeless, something is drastically wrong.

If you agree with none of that then continue what you are doing.

If, however, you want….you dream of….you pray for….a better life, then start taking steps towards self-sufficiency.

Making do with what we've got
Making do with what we've got | Source

What Do I Get out of It?

That’s always the bottom line now isn’t it; what is in it for me?

How about the saving of that hard-earned cash of yours? When you grow your own vegetables you are saving money. When you raise chickens and never have to pay for eggs you are saving money. When you do home repairs yourself you are saving money. Need I continue?

How about the feeling of accomplishment you get when you begin to control your own economic system and say goodbye to Wall Street?

How about establishing once again the concept of home and community? There was a time when a housewife was the most creative and inventive person on the planet. There was a time when fathers were handymen who could tackle any problem that came along. Today we have adults who have no clue how to change the tires on their vehicles and who call for assistance when the battery dies.

How about learning to become one with the earth instead of using it for our need and greed? When we learn to recycle and re-use, we are slowing the rate of depletion of natural resources.

How about the knowledge that what you are eating is free of additives, preservatives and dangerous chemicals that will slowly kill you and your family? How about knowing that buying locally is helping the local economy, your friends and neighbors who are part of your “community,” and not some conglomerate that will continue to harm you in the name of profit?

Are you practicing self-sufficiency?

See results

I Am Encouraged By What I See

As a professional writer I have access to thousands of articles that are written daily by my peers, and I am indeed encouraged by the increase in craft articles that I see. More and more people are learning the ways of old. They are quilting, they are crocheting and they are sewing. I see more DIY articles as the reading public seeks old ways to handle new problems. I have had wonderful conversations with people who are interested in the chickens we raise and the process that accompanies that, and I have learned from my neighbors about beekeeping and raising rabbits for meat.

The movement may be slow but it is a movement, and I see increased numbers daily, people who have had enough and are willing to try a new approach to life in the year 2014. I am encouraged by what I see. I am hopeful of what I will see.

If one of the scenarios mentioned earlier applied to you then remember this: you can change your own reality by becoming more self-sufficient. Who knows? You just might like it.

2013 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)


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