Spread out before the early settlers of this continent was incredible untapped wealth in the form of vast unsettled lands filled with natural resources—all for the taking. Now that the Frontier is mostly tapped out, we are seeing the long, slow, decline from prosperity to scarcity…and with it the loss of individual freedom. How long will it be before we see masses of government-dependent Americans protesting in the streets of our urban centers because the messiah state can no longer provide them with the handouts they have grown to depend on; that they feel they have earned and have a right to? The taking and the giving and the borrowing by government is unsustainable. We all know this. And we know the day of reckoning is coming. The best that messiah government can do is obscure the reality and delay the inevitable.
How then shall people who are cognizant of this eventuality live? Disengage as much as possible from these dependencies. Simplify your wants and needs. Steer clear of the bondage of debt. Provide for your needs of food, heat, and shelter as much as you can with your own hands and backbone. And, most fundamentally, turn your eyes from the false messiah state to the true Messiah. This response is as much spiritual as it is physical. What I am talking about is a return to the American pioneer spirit, characterized by a firm reliance on the God of the Bible, hard physical work, thrift, self-reliance, subsistence, and the family economy. While it is true that the Great Frontier, with all its uninhabited land and untapped natural resources is now, for all practical purposes, gone, the land remains. And if properly husbanded, the land can still sustain pioneer families in this new century, fraught as it is with impending shortages and instabilities.
Living on a section of land and working to make it productive will not bring wealth sufficient to satisfy the average modern American who is conditioned by our culture to spend, borrow, consume, and spend, borrow, waste. But in the days ahead, those people who have returned to the land, have equipped themselves with the tools and knowledge to make the land productive, and who are secure and content with little, these people will provide a valuable example for the helpless, discontent, and confused all around them. Pioneering is totally contrarian to the spirit of this age, but it is a positive, refreshing, satisfying course of action. It is the only appropriate personal response in the midst of the crisis we find ourselves in.
Herrick Kimball The Deliberate Agrarian