"Your system has experienced one or more fatal errors and must shut down at this time."
Or so said the message on my Dell laptop this morning. Coming on the heels of the death of my Gateway PC, this event is temporarily maddening but instructive in the larger sense.
Systems fail. They grow old. They wear out through use, abuse or inattention to maintenance. Systems die. This is true for computers, for people, for countries and for civilizations. Only God and man's folly are eternal.
Plato said, "Only the dead have seen the end of war." And war, the ultimate "fatal error" of one side or the other, is the natural result of cumulative individual failures -- political, moral and physical.
It is easy, but tedious, to catalogue the failures of our political, social and economic systems today. Anyone with eyes to see and ears to hear can craft his or her own list so I shall not waste time doing so here. But know this:
Our system has experienced one or more fatal errors and must shut down at this time.
We have been blessed to have grown up in a time of unprecedented plenty and freedom without -- most of us -- ever having to "endure the fatigues of supporting it."
That time is now past.
For whatever we intend to preserve of that failed system for our children, our posterity, we must now be prepared to fight. If you are not making those preparations now, you will likely be consumed -- with all that you hold dear -- in the coming system crash.
When a computer crashes, you simply discard it and obtain another. When political systems, nations or civilizations fail, they collapse in a welter of blood and carnage, usually ending in mountains of bodies, slavery and a long dark night of tyranny.
This is referred to by people today who recognize the existential danger by the short-hand acronym of "TBDO" -- "The Big Die Off."
This is not a video game.
There are no do-overs.
This is as real as it gets.
Your system has experienced one or more fatal errors and must shut down at this time.
Whether you survive The Big Die Off with anything left that is worth preserving is up to you.