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rising water, rising anarchy?

January 11, 2011

I once heard an apparent expert say that as a society we are only a day or two away from anarchy. His view was that should any of the large cities in the developed world lose the ability to distribute water to the people who live in it, that it would only be a matter of days before people started to become violent in their search for water and that we delude ourselves in thinking we are in control.

You might think he is a little on the extreme side. You might think that violence on the streets is something you will only see in “third-world” countries. You might think that we in the “first-world” are “better than that”.

I would like to think we are. But then you see images like this…

Bare supermarket shelves

Bare shelves at the supermarket - it is only day 1!

It hasn’t even been 12 hours since people in south-east Queensland saw the images of the flash flooding, heard the Premier say that until it stops raining we cannot predict how much higher than the 1974 floods the water will go … and already the shelves have been emptied at supermarkets across Brisbane.

It is Tuesday as I write. Right now the peak in the Brisbane River is predicted to occur on Thursday – if it stops raining. If it doesn’t then what?

I think the expert was right. We are deluded. Perhaps ironically it is an excess of water rather than a shortage that may prove his point. We are not in control of the world we live in. Never have been. The sooner we come to realise we are just one small part of this magical planet we inhabit rather than the masters of the universe, the sooner we will start living well, and making wise decisions.


The devastating impact the current floods have had on people throughout south-east Queensland is heartbreaking. Where ever you are in the world, I hope that everyone you know is safe and stays safe and well.


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One Comment leave one →
  1. January 11, 2011 5:57 pm

    Another photo here:

    @lexiphanic That’s my local done: “@daddyiwantapony: Coles at New Farm shelves are empty #qldfloods”

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