I think there may be a flaw in my previous post, in that I don’t have much of a feel for what the collapse of a Western liberal state looks like. It’s one thing to say that if something can’t go on, it won’t, but it’s another to say what actually happens when the government can no longer pay civil servants, or the banks don’t open, or  the police arrest the whole cabinet.

Such collapses do happen, but I’m in the dark about the details. I suspect the previous post assumes too much of a disintegration of existing institutional structures — they’re more likely to survive under different control, perhaps decentralised. Does anyone have any suggestions as to what I should be reading? Accounts from the end of the Soviet Union and of Yugoslavia would seem an obvious starting point.

Update @MikeAnissimov links to SHTF School , a blog about life in the Balkan region after Yugoslavia disintegrated. The emphasis is on personal preparedness (survivalism), but as raw material, it’s just the sort of thing I’m looking for.