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Thoughts On Where We Are, and Where We're Going
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(08-18-2018, 08:01 PM)justpassingthrough Wrote: I haven't thought about S&H much for a while, but had a few random thoughts after some time away from it. I've had doubts about various aspects of their theories, especially the more specific details, but I think the more you zoom out, the more credibility it has.

I would argue that S&H themselves pointed out that their theories do not predict individual events and circumstances but rather large movements of large groups of people in aggregate.  Much like the Psychohistory of Assimov's Foundation series.

Quote:It doesn't fit exactly under any category, so I chose General.

Works for me.  I honestly don't come to this forum that much anymore.  Largely it has devolved into the same old faces making the same old arguments repeatedly and ad nauseam.

 
Quote:With that in mind, this is how I see things right now:

1. The Boomer Left, which had been on a relentless 50 year march, reached its apotheosis from 2008-2016. It reached its phase of maximum influence, and maximum decadent excess. In 2016, the dam broke. The Left's shock and incredible hysteria at Trump becoming president was based on their cult-like dogma about the inevitability, and linear "progress", of their idiosyncratic obsessions. Their faith was shattered. Cyclical pendulums swung and smacked them for a loop like an anvil landing on Wile E. Coyote.

For the Boomer Left I'd agree.  For the Leftists of X (such that exist) and Millenials it remains to be seen.  Generation Z seems to have essentially completely rejected the left.

Quote:2. It's unclear exactly where we sit in the cycle,

I would disagree.  Using my particular take on generational theory (which incorporates a Mega-Saeculum as well as Micro-turnings) I'd say that we are either in the late Micro-Awakening or Early Micro-Unraveling of the 4T of a Unraveling Saeculum itself.


Quote:and there are echoes of many past cycles.

History rhymes but does not repeat.  This should be expected regardless the turning or saeculum.


Quote:There is division in the US like the Civil War, with the extremes embracing the discredited and cataclysmic ideologies of WWII. Totalitarianism is back in fashion, especially on the Far Left, which increasingly calls openly for socialism, and has taken up a cause of Nazi-like systematization of "identity" groups, and a Maoist Cultural Revolutionary determination to completely erase and remake society, culture and history by any means necessary. The fact that freedom of speech and other First Amendment protections are now openly opposed by the radical left, not merely a few cranks, but systematically in major institutions (academic, media, internet behemoths) is a relatively new feature of truly dangerous militant extremism. Orwell is rolling in his grave about the ideas increasingly dominating Silicon Valley, which makes them look like they're following 1984 as if it's a textbook.

Actually this is not new at all.  Censorship and control of speech have been the tools of dying paradigms since the beginning of time.  Since it is the Boomer Left which had its apogee most recently it is to be expected that the moral panics and calls for censorship would be coming from the left.  

Quote:On the Right, there have been minuscule but amplified outcroppings of moldy white supremacism, and the weird internet trolls of the "alt right", all of which amount to a real phenomenon, but a very limited one, with no real power and influence. As you move towards the center, there has been a clear shift away from the heavily libertarian ideology that dominated Republicans in the 3T towards a more traditional conservatism. 

The so-called "alt right" is of limited value and mostly composed of right wing whites using the tactics of the boomer left.  They will be left in the dust by the resurgence of Nationalist Populism which should not be confused with "traditional conservatism".

Quote:Donald Trump defies categorization in various ways, but in the broadest sense, I think Obama is analogous to FDR, and Trump is analogous to Truman and/or Eisenhower. 

Obama is not analogous to FDR.  There are many factors as to why.  First he is a Joneser on the X side of the line--so wrong generation for a GC.  Second, his administration was plagued with corruption and heavily obstructed by Congress (two problems FDR didn't have, and likely wouldn't have tolerated).  These are the two biggest reasons why trying to compare Obama to FDR is comparing an apple to a tomato.  Yes, they are both red (in the socialist sense) and yes they are both fruits (IE Democrats) but they are both fundimentally different.

Likewise, Trump is not analogous to Truman or Eisenhower.  First he is a Early Boomer and not a Core Nomad (Ike an Harry were both core Losts) so wrong generation.  Also his style is not comparable to either.  Truman was a Nomad liberal and Ike a Nomad conservative.  Trump isn't a liberal or a conservative at all.  He is a Nationalist and a Populist.  He calls back to a thread in American history far older than the saeculum--I actually named him the "Jacksonian Grey Champion" in other threads.

Ultimately though, I think that using American models for comparison.  I would actually say that Russian comparisons would be more accurate.  If one thinks of Reagan taking on a Lenin-esque role, George H.W. Bush would be the short transition period to Clinton's Stalin, and George W. Bush would be a Khrushchev-esque buffoon, while Obama would be Brezhnev overseeing the longest stagnation in the US in history.  As I told my mother some time ago, and again recently, my hope was that Trump would be a Gorbachev and lead us to a relatively soft landing with managed collapse rather than Yeltsin like shock treatments.

Then again I also subscribe to the notion that collapse of the US superpower polity is inevitable.  See the works of Dimitri Orlov.


Quote:As said above, we have continued to see reiterations of Boomer obsessions from their youth. The Iraq War was their replay of Viet Nam. The actions of the Obama Administration in 2016 increasingly look like a replay of Watergate, on steroids. The attempt by the DoJ and other players to interfere with the election, wiretap the opposing party, and then run a campaign of leaks against a sitting president is unprecedented.

I would argue that Boomers continuing to be obsessed with the obsessions of their youth is to be expected from Boomers.  I say this in regard to Boomers in particular and not about Prophet Generations in general (though it seems to be present at the end of the life cycle of Prophets more generally).


Quote:The complete corruption of the executive branch that occurred under Obama is increasingly impossible to ignore. Whether that results in cleaning house and resetting the country on more honest footing, or is merely the political "establishment" warming up, along with Silicon Valley and other institutions, to impose true totalitarianism remains to be seen.

Obama's White House was completely corrupt, and corrupt at the core.  As it stands there is a cleaning of house.  The political 'establishment' in both 'parties' is losing to either out right socialists in the case of Democrats, or Nationalist Populists in the case of Republicans.  By the end of Trump's second term, and he will have a second term unless he unexpectedly dies for one reason or an other, both parties will be fundamentally different than they were at 2016 or even most of the Millennial Saeculum.

Quote:The agenda of radical social leftism and economic globalization cannot hold,

One of the reasons why the Democrats are in open civil war with each other at the current time.  The factions fighting in that party are the socialist "Progressives" vs the globalist "Blue Dogs".  The GOP went through a similar civil war and the Nationalist Populists have largely won with the Neo-Con elements being either discredited or migrating to the "Blue Dog" wing of the Democrats (which incidentally they emerged from to begin with).


Quote:and the US will collapse and disintegrate if it is not turned back permanently.

The US is likely to collapse and disintegrate regardless.


Quote:You cannot combine globalization with identity politics without disaster. The jury is still out on whether it continues to its inevitable end. Trump is certainly an attempt to stop it. And they know it, which is why they are trying so hard to destroy him. I am optimistic that people have begun to wake up in time to repair the damage and prevent disaster, but the jury is still out. 

I agree with the first sentence of this passage.  This is why the Democrats have been losing ground since 2008.  I will also say that the Left Establishment (and to a lesser degree the Rino Never-Trump types) know that he, and Nationalist Populism is diametrically opposed to their internationalist (or globalist) tendencies as well as his having little time for the divide and rule tactics of identity politics.

That being said I want to make it understood that all politics essentially boils down to identity.  Identity on the individual level informs culture on the community level (city, state, etc), and culture informs the politics and policies of those individuals and communities.

Quote:3. If we are in the 4T, and 2008 was the main Catalyst, has there been a Climax? The recent elections in the West, from Brexit to Trump and others, while a decided break point in a new direction, don't seem sufficient.

First, I want to point out that I believe that the 4T began around 2005-2006 not 2008.  Second, I would point out that I would say that no the climax hasn't happened.  You will know when it does.  In the last it was V-E and V-J days.  I would say that Brexit, Trump, and other such movements could be compared to Midway or Stalingrad battles.   But the comparison is rather poor.  I don't think that a shooting war will break out so long as the Neo-Con elements of the GOP or Democrats are kept from power.  That is, so long as Trump is President and Trumpism remains the current in the GOP with the wind at its back.

This of course doesn't preclude a war from happening, just that I don't foresee it and unlike others who make predictions my record is more consistent.  Mind you I'm studying statistics and numbers and realpolitik rather than gazing into crystal balls or consulting star charts based on Iron Age systems of thought.


Quote:On the other hand, if the 4T began earlier, say on 9/11/2001 as I have long suspected, the present could be, very simply, the beginning of the 1T. Perhaps 9/11 was the Catalyst, and the 2008 crash the Climax?

While I will say that the mood of the country is certainly more optimistic than it was say in 2016 or even 2008, I would not say that a new 1T is starting.  Quite frankly there isn't a consensus in the country "this is the way things we want to be, we're going to build it like that" that is necessary for a 1T to start.

Quote:4. What should be made of the Millenials, and the following generation which is now coming of age? The Millenials don't seem to fit many of S&H's predictions, but they certainly fit some. Their conformity to hierarchical control is clear, where they have dutifully allowed themselves to be dominated by the Boomer Left. Their obsession with the "wonders of technology" is clear, like Civics before them. They obviously seek some kind of rationalization, stability and regimentation, even if it's subconscious, and they don't know what that is. 

Many of S&H's predictions as to how Millenials would act was colored by their social conservative biases.  And that is okay.  When they were writing they expected that since the GIs swung left too, that Millies as a consequence must swing right.  Largely they haven't or they haven't yet.  That being said there is a large contingent of Millies which are subscribing to Trumpian Nationalist Populism because they see it working.  That said I fully expect them to stay relatively to the left of both X and Z.

Quote:The next generation ("Homelanders" in past 4T forum-speak) are definitely looking more like Xers, who are primarily the parents of the early cohorts now coming of age. How that translates into Artists is an interesting question. Overpowered by Millenials and Boomers at this point, they are probably more self-contained and cautious than other groups, biding their time, waiting to see how things turn out. As Boomers age out (which has begun to happen rapidly), the new Artists and their Xer parents will dominate, while the new Prophets are born. 

As the parent of a late Millie, or Early Z child (he claims he's Z, I'm inclined to believe him too)  (It should be noted he was born in 1999 and was thus 11 in 2008, and 7 in 2006 and generations tend to precede the turning by around five or so years on average.) I can  say that they are much like X in that they seek out their own paths seeing that the paths laid out for them by Boomers and followed by Millies simply aren't working.  For example my son took up a trade rather than going to university and has been able to put aside a good deal of money and as long as there is tile that needs to be set somewhere, getting work and thus money is just a matter of asking around for it.

My niece and nephew are core Z and seem to be substantially more conservative than their parents--so much to the point as identifying more as Americans than as Blacks which leads me to conclude that they will be fodder for Nationalist Populism as opposed to Left-Wing style identity politics.

That being said this evidence is anecdotal and I don't have hard data on a generation which is mostly still composed of actual children.

Quote:While many of S&H's specific predictions about the future remain suspect, these are my guesses at this point, when it comes to where we go from here:

1. The first question that has to be settled is whether we are half way through the 4T, or at the beginning of the 1T. I'm not completely sure one way or the other. If the Climax has yet to come, there are only two possibilities I can foresee. 

One is the collapse of the United States and the West in general, due to internal division. The Radical Left inside the US has become genuinely extreme, and they exert heavy influence over many societal institutions. They are now unopposed within the Democratic Party, which has been purged of moderates, or whose moderates have been cowed into subservience to the Far Left. They completely control much of academia, and the media. And they have an influence on big business which no one would have predicted, thanks in no small part to the economic dominance of Silicon Valley, which is right outside San Francisco, the most far left place in the US. 

The Far Left dominance of the Democratic party will either be temporary or the Democratic party will cease to exist outside of blue enclaves.  Should this happen, the Democrats will be at best a regional party concentrated in CommieCalifornia and the North East (less New Hampshire, Maine)  Massachusetts is dominated by Boston, New York by NYC and New Jersey by NYC and Philadelphia.  Pennsylvania is split between Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.

The Far Left will lose the Rust Belt, permanently lose the South (including the Blacks--most blacks are socially conservative and that voting block in the Democratic party is becoming more and more uncomfortable).

As for the Tech Giants....well alt-tech is the answer.  Facebook, and Twitter are both under threat from Minds and Gab respectively (both are outside of Silicon Valley too).  This leaves Google.  As a search engine it is being replaced by those in the know by the likes of Duck Duck go and others.  Bing isn't even competition really.  Youtube is the major media outlet that Google has and it is losing money and once Bit chute and others catch up will lose market share.

After all who uses Yahoo! anymore?  Personally I've not used facebook in ages.  It quite simply isn't fun to be there and the content leaves a lot to be desired and that is before the overt censorship Zuck is implementing at the behest of the EU.

As for the west tearing self apart.  I'm not sure it will.  The EU will collapse from its own internal contradictions certainly, and the disintegration of the US is always on the agenda and has been since 1776.  But ultimately I don't see the West self-destructing.  If the welfare is cut off the migrant crisis will solve itself quickly.

Quote:Geopolitically, the primary threat to the US and the West is China. In recent decades, and in the extreme in recent years, the US economy has been intertwined with China's.

While true, this fact negates China as a threat.  The Chinese economy is largely based on selling shit to Americans to get the dollars to buy the resources and oil that they need to sell more shit to Americans.  This is why the US will win any trade war with the Chinese baring the Chinese going full out convertible RMB and opening up oil accounts with exporters in RMB.  In short when a country's economy is based on selling shit for export, this means that there likely isn't the basis there for selling shit internally.

China is in essence a paper tiger.


Quote:The combination of "globalization" with the Boomer Left's radical, authoritarian, and racist social leftism can only lead to the collapse of the United States, splintering into balkanized enclaves of warring groups.

I agree but will say that there is a caveat involved.  US disintegration will be the result of internal contradictions rather than imposed by others from outside the US.  Be it China, Russia, the EU, whomever.  If the US disintegrates it will do so because it has failed internally rather than because it was destroyed externally.

Abraham Lincoln Wrote:America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.

Quote:Russia, while overblown due to its tiny economy and heavy reliance on fossil fuel exports, appears to want revenge for the collapse of the Soviet Union, and would love to see nothing more. Their dabbling in US politics did not elect Donald Trump - what has been shown instead is their involvement in trying to encourage extremists across the spectrum, like Black Lives Matter, white supremacists, and the "Resistance" of the radical left, to heighten divisions and instability in the US. Their most recently discovered attempts involved trying to help organize and promote anti-Trump protests outside the White House. 

Largely what the Russians have done is buy ads, which is legal, and give some groups some money which are not directly tied to election campaigns--which is also completely legal.  They are in short if doing anything sowing discord, but are not very effective at it due to a lack of resources and the fact that the US is an open society.  The CIA is much more effective but it largely focuses on closed societies when engaging in election skullduggery and agitprop.

Quote:So the bad outcome involves the Radical Left in the US seizing power, and pushing the doomed combination of globalization and identity politics even farther forward to its logical conclusion, which would result in the effective dissolving of the US, and the domination of the world by Communist China for the coming "saeculum".

True, however, this would require that the forces that will be named as "progressive" in the next 1T aren't currently on the right.  That the Boomer Left establishment some how, some way wins the 4T.  This is akin to claiming that the Confederacy could have won the Civil War (unlikely without both Britain and France stepping in to help the South--which was unlikely due to the European disdain for slave holding at the time), or Germany being able to take on the Largest (US), Second Largest (USSR) and Third Largest (British Empire) economies of the time on their own, in a two front war.

Quote:The other, more positive outcome, which I think is more likely, is that we are at or near the 1T, and the movements across the West generally defined as "conservative populism" are society slamming on the brakes after a period of chaos. I think the generational alignments argue for this interpretation. Boomers, despite the persistence of visible leaders like Trump, are almost completely in retirement now in society at large, and the post-Millenial generation is coming of age. The economy is finally reviving after a decade of suffering, which followed a decade of decline. Real median household incomes have just recently returned to where they were in 1998, after two decades below that peak. Trump's actions geopolitically are showing a clear pattern of putting out fires. He effectively ended ISIS within months of taking office, and has engaged with North Korea. He uses leverage to force people to the table, and then makes deals. His goal is not some new major war (he ran on opposition to Iraq, and has been called an isolationist), but rather peace and stability, with the US remaining a superpower, unthreatened. 

This is largely the vision upheld by Nationalist Populists, like Trump.  You seem to call them "conservative populists" but not all of them are conservative.  Trump himself certainly isn't a conservative of the same stripe as Ye Olde Conservative of the Unraveling (or even before then) he is actually and always has been a New York City Business Democrat.  An argument that so far only people completely asleep haven't figured out on their own, or Boomer Leftists with their head so far up their own asses that they are likely suffocating.

Quote:2. Provided the second outcome, and the beginning of the 1T, I can see a few trends emerging. The new Artists will seek some sort of stable, negotiated settling of the Boomer divides, which will be provided by their Xer parents in Midlife. The recurring eruptions of leftist outrage will be receding aftershocks, increasingly rejected by society at large. Millenials will quiet down, settle down, and build their careers, homes and families, being shaped more by Xer leadership than Boomer, which will have a moderating impact on them. Xers will finally catch a break, and will enjoy peace and prosperity in leadership, then retire into the 2T, which they will simply ignore. The culture, robbed of all meaning by the groupthink control of discredited leftist extremism, will be a relatively exhausted wasteland. The new Artists (if their S&H name has any meaning) will want to fill the void, and grow up with enough protection and prosperity to pursue it.

In the 2T, the Millenials will emerge into leadership, with their trademark hubris and faith in technology at the forefront. They will seek to carry out their programming, but their children will rebel against them. One trend that seems certain is a rebellion against technology, and a "return to nature" as typical of S&H traits. The internet will no longer be new and exciting, but rather stifling old news, and Millenials won't be able to see it any other way. Spending time in nature, and focusing on the things that separate humans from machines, will be one likely Prophet rejection of their parents' values. 

I would say that this is probable if a muted end, or triumphant end to the 4T occurs.  Again the jury is still out and there is a remote chance that the Boomer Left will make a come back--but quite frankly they simply don't have the wind at their backs and haven't for much of the turning.  I will point out an ancedote though.  I've noticed that with some older Z generation people (I usually call them Zeds after the British pronunciation of the name of the letter Z) that they are making a conscious effort to use older technologies.  My son for example took up traditional wet shaving as opposed to using those multi-bladed monstrosities as he finds the results more appealing and comfortable.  I've noticed some of the more artsy types at work that are younger Millies and older Z are taking to fountain pens.  There is even word that there is a renaissance in journal/diary writing (bullet journal writing being very popular at the moment--but if this is a real movement or just a fad remains to be seen).  Indeed sharing everything on social media seems to not be in the interests of younger Millies and older Zeds

Quote:Given the extreme and hostile suppression and persecution of Christianity by the Radical Left during the 4T, I wouldn't be surprised to see a resurgence among the next Prophets. One can imagine the horror Millenial parents would react with if their kids suddenly became outspoken Evangelicals. Since the Prophets usually have divided camps and competing visions, I could see some other alternative being a "singularity"-like quest for "transhumanism" on the part of the next Prophet Left, impatient to push even farther into insanity as the Boomer Left did. 

I expect a resurgence of religion in the 2T but I doubt it will be traditional Catholicism, or Protestantism.  I expect that if the pattern of "back to nature" occurs, as it is likely to, paganism and neo-paganism will emerge as major trends.  Mormonism will likely have a major influence too.  The older branches of Christianity though are going to have a rough rest of the 4T and 1T.

I do not think that a quest for the singularity will happen.  This is a Boomer idea, and in general following Prophets tend to reject the ideologies of preceding Prophets.

Quote:It's impossible to say what the major geopolitical issues of the next saeculum will be, but the general outline of a world where the West has to contend with major issues with China, with Russia playing the spoiler, looks like where things are headed. With China being the new Soviet Union of the last saeculum's Cold War. 

The expectation of a new cold war is silly.  Unlike Russia at the end of WW2, China's economy largely rests on an export driven market.  If anything I expect China to liberalize and become more capitalist and integrated into the world order than playing a foil for the US or any other power for that matter.  But then again I expect the next saeculum to be a series of crises leading to the end of the current modern order that has been in play since the Enlightenment.

Quote:This post has been much longer than expected - the ideas started flowing - so I'll stop it there. Helped me flesh out my own thoughts. I've convinced myself again that 9/11 was the Catalyst, and we are now approaching the 1T boundary, but probably not quite there yet. Trump/Pence looks like some analogy of Truman/Eisenhower.

You may have convinced yourself of that, but the evidence simply doesn't bear it out unless we have a sudden climax to the 4T before 2022-ish.  Quite frankly my timeline using 2006 as the starting point that gives 2022 as the 16 year mark of the turning and right where one would expect the climax to happen with a remaining four or so years for "declining action" before the start of an exposition.

I've also in the past expressed generational theory in terms of the standard story timeline in literature:  Exposition (1T--usually late 1T), rising action (2T thru 4T Climax), Climax (4T climax), Declining action (late 4T, early 1T).
It really is all mathematics.

Turn on to Daddy, Tune in to Nationalism, Drop out of UN/NATO/WTO/TPP/NAFTA/CAFTA Globalism.
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RE: Thoughts On Where We Are, and Where We're Going - by Kinser79 - 08-19-2018, 01:31 AM

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