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Readers Respond: How to Survive a Great Depression

Responses: 56


How did people survive the Great Depression of 1929? Here are five tips that show us how to survive the Great Recession today.
  1. They banded together and helped each other out.
  2. They were flexible.They found any kind of work. They looked for multiple streams of income. They rented out rooms.
  3. They cut costs. They made do with what they had. They patched their clothes.
  4. Cash was king. They avoided banks, and loaned to each other.They bartered services.
  5. They diversified their savings. They didn't put all their money into one thing.

be a realist

if you own gold/silver coins the government can legally seize them (like they did before). have jewelry instead, like heavy chain necklaces to pawn later. if you have land/house...great plant have chickens a fish pond etc. if you don't ...be ready to invest in things people need to survive. water stocks/food stocks/emergency medical supply stocks. do not put all your money in one bank, spread it across several. i would however though propose considering investing in a bank out of the country. consider leaving the country where its better. Think Canada,or a place unaffected. people will wait till the last minute before they act. OThers will stock pile only to be vacated and homeless and have no place to put it all. either buy a house and land in a low to no tax state. Or consider a mobile house trailer. either stay put in well thought ahead stability, get the heck out while you can or prepare to be mobile. people might argue where is the patriotism....I say survival is first.
—Guest miss A


The problem in America is NOT Obamacare; it it the takeover by the rich of our Democracy. Corporate personhood is the death knell of Democracy. The rich may no openly buy our politicians. We are finished.
—Guest Will


Your table header is incorrect - the GDP you cite is not nominal GDP, but GDP in today's dollars.
—Guest Ivan

The bubble is going to burst

As I have studied the Bible and read different books and read comments from people in the financial world all are saying we are headed for a wreck. The world trade center in 01,the stock market crash in 08. 7 years apart ,add 7 to that and what do you see? So if you look at what was left in the world trade center, was a beam shaped in the form of a cross. God is saying our answer is in the finished work on that cross. The way to survive is accepting Jesus as your Lord. It's the only way! Please think about it.
—Guest Larry

I was Born in the Dust-Bowl, Depression

I was born in the Kansas Dust Bowl, Great-Depression. My baby sister Patty died of malnutrition- dysentery in 1937. My cousin nearly died of dust-pneumonia but I lived. How? I could say much but space prevents. Read how we survived in My Book: Drifting Sand Of Time.
—Guest BettyJo

To Survive a Great Depression:

America needs "term...limits" with our elected officials in Washington, DC. withour term limits our elected officials will continue to (kick the can down the road). Democrat or Republican November 2012 conditions will not change too much fightings among (Democrats and Republicans) and not getting the Ameican people business done. Its really sad in America today, not one willing to take the proper action to tujrn thing around. Concern Citizen,
—Guest Sammie McNeal Jr.

How to survive a great depression.

Of course, the stock crashed in (1929) president Herbert Hoover the lack if imagination for the economy, he was the only president who was a Engineer degree, with that said, he was a business man and wanted government to stay out of the way of business. He wanted businesses to pull the economy out of the "great depresion" the country was sliding into. The key element to survive a (great deppresion) is businessgovernment, and big unions to work togeather, (negotiate and compromise) when needed. its imparative becuase during a (great depression) the people suffers most just like the depression of the (1930's). The problem today (wall street) has too much power over the people, and too much influnce over our elected officails in Washington, DC. This depression is a world problem, when the International Monetary Fund requesting leadership from America, waiting for America to lead again. The (IMF) is in need of money to operate because the organization has obligations to many persons'.
—Guest Sammie McNeal jr.

This is just as bad as the 1930's

It's very difficult to find any kind of work-just like it was in the 1930's. This is just a repeat of the 1930's, with the exception of the banks not closing down. The town I live in is in very bad economic shape, and the jobs that are available (which are very far and few), either you're "over qualified" or "not qualified enough". Somedays, I don't know how I'm going to make it. One day I'll get lucky and earn a little money by doing some kind of odd job; and the following days, there wouldn't be anything for me to do. I think I wasted my time graduating from high school, going to college to think I'm "bettering myself", when in reality I'm back at square 1. Something's got to give with this recession, and it's bs saying that it's over because it's far from over. I have to take my hat off to the people who lived in the 1930's when things were slightly rougher than now economic wise.
—Guest Dee

This depression isn't as bad as 1930's

This is only my opinion, but this recession isn't as bad as the Great Depression. The people who suffered the most are the ones who lived beyond their means while they had a job and couldn't cut back expenses after they lost it. Most people who lived within their means may have had some setbacks when they lost their jobs. I read that one person made $180,000 a year and had a $120,000 mortgage and then lost her job and foreclosed on her mortgage. Why couldn't she pay off her mortgage when she had her job? What the heck was she spending her money on when she had a job, and I seriously doubt that money from her job went to the poor.
—Guest Katie

A great impending depression

how do I survive this, since I am retired on a fixed small income and have a disability? As I believe, only through faith in God and his family of believers.
—Guest michael hubbard


that stocks cnoubed back from a nearly 700 pt drop and there are serious slides this week but it isn't the worse one we have had.128 point loss is steep but it is much better than the 700 that it was.The liberals running around yelling the sky is falling the sky is falling is part of the reason for this they are in a panic and DEMANDED a bailout which is only a bandaid. It might get worse but we are ok. The WHOLE WORLD is experiencing the same thing right now .so the world won't crash!Not to say it isn't serious .it is I do believe the government will handle this .and solve it eventually!BAD NEWS If OBAMA Is in though .and we will never hear the end of it that it was the republicans but it is the democrats CLINTON did this .don't be fooled into thinking different. You can't make money like we did back then and not pay for it now. IT was AMAZING the money we made during Clinton years but it was a false bottom a bubble under false economy and we were in a recession when Bush took office ..but no one says anything about THAT!There was a crash in 1970 too ..Look at history a recession is on average at this time .we go in cycles and we have ALWAYS corrected the situation within two years.Remember too this is a good thing that this weekend is a holiday weekend and all markets are closed hopefully people will step back and take a second look. We are living the housing bubble 45 percent drop right now that is a WHOLE LOT OF LIBERAL caused problems from Clinton !Stock is a sliver of a market based on earnings .companies are going to earn 40 percent less but not all companies are going to go out of business right now ..we are not going to go down.Companies are trading at muliti million dollar lows right now so that means we are going to go up! It will take time..!Just DON'T PANIC!!!!!!! We are senior citizens and we are worried about our 401 K's and stocks and we have taken a huge hit but we have done this before and it went up before and it will go up again.You cannot solve 30 years of unwinding credit being defaulted in just a few days.Not ONE BANK has lost ONE person's FDIC money .so it is really not THAT bad yet! Oh and please stop listening to the news ..they can give you facts but they are also VERY NEGATIVE! That is their business to report everything they have 24/7 to cover news and they are fighting for time! So the most outrageous they get the more viewers they get.
—Guest bOoMqvKIrd

Share ideas with neighbors

I plan to talk to my neighbors considering the bleak future to come. No one can predict the future regarding anykind of disaster, economic collapse, EMP fallout, Radiation poisoning from a bomb, War, etc etc. Are we prepared as should be? Unfortunately, I'm not. I'm just basically covered for a few days. I'm a doomsday prepper so I like to be prepared for everything. Unfortunately, I don't have thousands of dollars to spend. I'm lucky if I have $10.00 a month to spend on supplies. It is going to be slow storing stuff. I hope to start a raised garden too because of these outrageous prices in the stores.
—Guest chrisjm

How to survive a great depression.

We need to promote local businesses that will in turn, put Americans back to work. We need to invest in our nation, our people once again. That in turn will strengthen our economy and get us back on track. We should not live beyond our means, but live within our limits of what we earn and try to save 10% of our income every month.
—Guest Cheri

Skills you need

I have been reading the responses here, and I'm hoping that most of them came by cell phone because the spelling and grammar are atrocious. If this is any indication of the plight of our country...that most people cannot communicate succinctly and correctly...no wonder there is high unemployment! People, PLEASE, along with the "spend less, save more, plant gardens," IMPROVE yourselves. Read books. Improve your English. Read about economics. Don't rely only on the internet for your news. Take classes at your local community colleges. Diversify your skills. If you can't find a job in one field, learn another. But please, improve your communication skills - writing, grammar, spelling!

Stop the laziness

My parents went throught the great depression and they taught me how to make do, there have been many times that I have needed to use these skills in my life to feed my family, to cloth my children etc. I am so tired of everyone compaining that they have had to cut back on entertainment, what ever happened to playing family games etc, they are also very educational. I have a vegie garden and if I cannot afford meat for a meal, oh well i add lentils or beans etc. Start repairing things that need a touch up don't throw it out, I reuse old towels as rags, or if they are not to bad sew them in half and use them as mats for mud. Start thinking about what you would actually need to do if you had nothing left. it is better to have something a little worn than not at all. Everyone says reuse, recycle etc but you need to live by that code. If you need to think about it don't buy it, if you can live without it do. Start living a life not a material life. We do and we do just fine.
—Guest Shaz

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