“After I spoke to Tainter, I called several of these scholars, and they were more openly alarmed than he was by the current state of affairs. ‘Things could spin out,’ one warned. ‘I am scared,’ admitted another. As the summer wore on even Tainter, for all his caution and reserve, was willing to allow that contemporary society has built-in vulnerabilities that could allow things to go very badly indeed — probably not right now, maybe not for a few decades still, but possibly sooner. In fact, he worried, it could begin before the year was over.” Ben Ehrenreich in NYT Mag: How Do You Know When Society Is About to Fall Apart? (It turns out moan-crying on the couch is not a key indicator. Phew.)