Actually, no. Without being all 'we're doomed', we can look at the real world, see where things are going wrong and need fixing. And then make it so that things don't turn out the worst possible way.
Dmitry Orlov is a Russian-American engineer who writes about the state of humanity and it's systems and institutions and where we may be headed. He has written other bestselling books and many articles.
He lists the five stages as Financial, Commercial, Political, Social and Cultural collapse and warns that we definitely need to arrest the decline of our society at stage 2, as going beyond that is much harder to deal with.
It is fascinating to look at the various countries around the world, such as Somalia where these events have happened and see how and what could have been done to prevent it.
Since the global financial crisis in 2008 the world seems to be teetering on the edge. Banking fraud, climate change, tax havens, political scandal, corporate media, the EU, Brexit in the UK, the unprecedented rise of opposite political mavericks in Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders, the list goes on.
Here in New Zealand we have a housing crisis, infrastructure crisis (notably in auckland with woeful public transport) and the defunding of health, education, public broadcasting and other spheres and the slow dismantling of the welfare state which gave us a very successful egalitarian society.
You would think that this is a book which condemns us to a very uncertain future, but Mr Orlov believes it is possible to work together to avoid the worst. Being clear-eyed and honest about the risks and then working to mitigate them is up to all of us.
As a new grandmother I'll be doing my utmost to make a better country for them to inherit.
Title: The Five Stages of Collapse
Author: Dmitry Orlov
Reviewed by Clare K
Clare K works at Massey Library in West Auckland. She believes that there is nothing you can't learn from a book, and the more you know the more you grow.