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Breaking point: America approaching a period of disintegration
#1
http://www.salon.com/2016/10/01/breaking...socialflow


Quote:As the 2016 campaign reaches fever pitch, the more heat there is and the less light is shed. Which is why evolutionary anthropologist Peter Turchin’s new book comes as such a breath of fresh air. “Ages of Discord: A Structural-Demographic Analysis of American History” is not about this year’s presidential election, per se, but it’s a quantum leap forward in illuminating the disintegrative trends that America has experienced over the last several decades that are currently driving our politics.

Everything from skyrocketing inequality and political gridlock to white working class angst and the rise of mass shootings and other troubling signs of our times — these are all interconnected reflections of where America is in a cyclic historical process: social integration followed by disintegration, discord and violence. Turchin and others have observed this pattern repeatedly in civilizations from ancient Rome and early Chinese dynasties up to the present day...

http://www.salon.com/2016/10/01/breaking...socialflow
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#2
(10-02-2016, 10:43 AM)Dan Wrote: http://www.salon.com/2016/10/01/breaking...socialflow


Quote:As the 2016 campaign reaches fever pitch, the more heat there is and the less light is shed. Which is why evolutionary anthropologist Peter Turchin’s new book comes as such a breath of fresh air. “Ages of Discord: A Structural-Demographic Analysis of American History” is not about this year’s presidential election, per se, but it’s a quantum leap forward in illuminating the disintegrative trends that America has experienced over the last several decades that are currently driving our politics.

Everything from skyrocketing inequality and political gridlock to white working class angst and the rise of mass shootings and other troubling signs of our times — these are all interconnected reflections of where America is in a cyclic historical process: social integration followed by disintegration, discord and violence. Turchin and others have observed this pattern repeatedly in civilizations from ancient Rome and early Chinese dynasties up to the present day...

http://www.salon.com/2016/10/01/breaking...socialflow

Yay, its finally out.  I just texted my wife to send through the Amazon order. I read a portion of this book in manuscript and have been pestering Turchin asking when it was going to come out for a year (he took the manuscript down more than a year ago and I lost the printout I had of it).

In this book Turchin maps out how he sees the American secular cycles, the first time the concept has been applied to a post-industrial society.  Secular cycles are aligned with cycles in economic inequality. The driver for the pre-industrial cycle is demographics and the associated inequality cycles are  consequence of this, and don't always show up.

I suspect Turchin is still thinking of a demographic driver for the modern cycles, although clearly it doesn't show up as cycles in population. He relates these to cycles in population well-being and levels of immigration.  What I am interested in is his take on how does a cycle shift from the "up" phase when inequality (presumed due to demographic factors) is rising to the "down" phase like happened during the first half of the twentieth century.  The population did not fall over this time nor does trends in population growth rate explain things.  For example Turchin points out the sharp drop in immigration rate in 1924 as a key demographic factor associated with the shift from rising to falling inequality. 

Population growth rate did take a dip, the trailing 20-year population growth rate was 1.8% in 1918 and 0.8% in 1945, shown an significant demographic effect of immigration. But this growth rate was restored by the Baby Boomers (the value was 1.7% in 1965).  After this immigration was restored and 20-year population growth rate peaked in 2013 at 1.1%.  Demographics doesn't seem to be a particularly powerful explainer.  The story is somewhat stronger if you look at labor force, but I don't have the data handy right now.  There is an argument here (which is why I see efforts to restrict immigration more favorably than other liberals) but it it's not as strong as proponents think.

What I really want to see is how you can get a HUGE reduction in inequality like that seen in the 1340-1450 period or in the 1930-1970 period without massive population decline (which induces labor shortages that drive wages up) or a massive reduction in elite number through war attrition (that allows a greater fraction of economic output to flow to the lower orders). If demographics are key its pretty much one or the other.

As a potential solution I have a manuscript ready to go that just awaits a literature review of Turchin's book, which I cannot do until I read it.  It is also possible that the finished book is very different than the manuscript I read, maybe he as already come up with the stuff in my paper--he's a really smart guy.
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#3
What I have found intriguing is how all the articles I have seen have mentioned the 1850's (i.e. the building to the Civil War 4T) as a key thing in the book, yet Turchin as this as a mid-cycle burst of instability, like the 13th century Baron's wars or the mid-Tudor crisis, which are not major episodes of unrest according to secular cycle theory.

I see the Civil War as a big deal, an example of state breakdown that marks the boundary of a secular cycle.  That is I think in modern industrial societies, Turchin's secular cycle is essentially the same as S&H's saecular cycle.  It is clear he hasn't changed his views, but how does he see the Civil War?  Another reason why I am eager the read the book.

What is important about this question is, Turchin's first secular cycle spans TWO saecula.  Does he think we are nearing the end of the second one (1930-    ) soon (which would mean this secular cycle is ONE saecula long) or not?
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#4
People holding the other side in complete contempt? Think of how nasty the debate was on slavery. Abolitionists: It's abominable. Slave-owners: the (word probably now abusive) need our firm guidance just to survive.

When even one side says that the other side belongs in prison, we have a big problem -- especially of the side scheduled for show trials and severe punishment has done nothing wrong. When part of the political spectrum says that dissidents are next to criminals, we have a problem.

For someone taking extreme positions and showing contempt for human rights, Donald Trump is doing very well in the polls -- or at least has been doing so.
The ideal subject of totalitarian rule is not the convinced Nazi or the dedicated Communist  but instead the people for whom the distinction between fact and fiction, true and false, no longer exists -- Hannah Arendt.


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#5
(10-02-2016, 03:03 PM)pbrower2a Wrote: People holding the other side in complete contempt? Think of how nasty the debate was on slavery. Abolitionists: It's abominable. Slave-owners: the (word probably now abusive) need our firm guidance just to survive.

When even one side says that the other side belongs in prison, we have a big problem -- especially of the side scheduled for show trials and severe punishment has done nothing wrong.  When part of the political spectrum says that dissidents are next to criminals, we have a problem.

For someone taking extreme positions and showing contempt for human rights, Donald Trump is doing very well in the polls -- or at least has been doing so.

Pretty sure it's Clinton who is calling the people on the other side "deplorables".
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#6
(10-02-2016, 10:43 AM)Dan 82 Wrote: http://www.salon.com/2016/10/01/breaking...socialflow


Quote:As the 2016 campaign reaches fever pitch, the more heat there is and the less light is shed. Which is why evolutionary anthropologist Peter Turchin’s new book comes as such a breath of fresh air. “Ages of Discord: A Structural-Demographic Analysis of American History” is not about this year’s presidential election, per se, but it’s a quantum leap forward in illuminating the disintegrative trends that America has experienced over the last several decades that are currently driving our politics.

Everything from skyrocketing inequality and political gridlock to white working class angst and the rise of mass shootings and other troubling signs of our times — these are all interconnected reflections of where America is in a cyclic historical process: social integration followed by disintegration, discord and violence. Turchin and others have observed this pattern repeatedly in civilizations from ancient Rome and early Chinese dynasties up to the present day...

http://www.salon.com/2016/10/01/breaking...socialflow

These problems are the result of specific policies carried out by the Republicans whom the voters put into office, and by some Democrats who yielded to the Republican power. Mass shootings are the result of libertarian policies regarding guns, and inequality is the result of libertarian policies regarding economics. Libertarian trends are common during 3Ts. That's what this is about, and it will pass as we get deeper into the 4T and into the 1T.
"I close my eyes, and I can see a better day" -- Justin Bieber

Keep the spirit alive;
Eric M
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#7
(10-02-2016, 05:15 PM)Warren Dew Wrote:
(10-02-2016, 03:03 PM)pbrower2a Wrote: People holding the other side in complete contempt? Think of how nasty the debate was on slavery. Abolitionists: It's abominable. Slave-owners: the (word probably now abusive) need our firm guidance just to survive.

When even one side says that the other side belongs in prison, we have a big problem -- especially of the side scheduled for show trials and severe punishment has done nothing wrong.  When part of the political spectrum says that dissidents are next to criminals, we have a problem.

For someone taking extreme positions and showing contempt for human rights, Donald Trump is doing very well in the polls -- or at least has been doing so.

Pretty sure it's Clinton who is calling the people on the other side "deplorables".


Yes, she called people deplorable -- for advocating, endorsing, condoning, or facilitating political violence, something new to America outside of the political mainstream. The lunatic fringe has returned to America, and it has taken over one of the main political parties.

Much that Donald Trump has said is disgusting. This is someone whose ideal woman has an image consistent with the Playboy philosophy. He has called to attention the size of his genitals. Do you think this good, Christian speech? This is a man who has declared that a judge could not decide a legal issue because he is a Mexican-American.

Tough!

Evil is to be shunned.

A hint: it isn;t good atheist or agnostic speech, either.
The ideal subject of totalitarian rule is not the convinced Nazi or the dedicated Communist  but instead the people for whom the distinction between fact and fiction, true and false, no longer exists -- Hannah Arendt.


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#8
Just pointing out that it's the Democrats who are "holding the other side in complete contempt", as you put it.

I disagree with much of the rest of your post, too - it was Marco Rubio who first referred to the size of Trump's genitals, for example, and Trump was just responding - but I have better places to get into political arguments.
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#9
(10-02-2016, 01:13 PM)Mikebert Wrote: What I have found intriguing is how all the articles I have seen have mentioned the 1850's (i.e. the building to the Civil War 4T) as a key thing in the book, yet Turchin as this as a mid-cycle burst of instability, like the 13th century Baron's wars or the mid-Tudor crisis, which are not major episodes of unrest according to secular cycle theory.

I see the Civil War as a big deal, an example of state breakdown that marks the boundary of a secular cycle.  That is I think in modern industrial societies, Turchin's secular cycle is essentially the same as S&H's saecular cycle.  It is clear he hasn't changed his views, but how does he see the Civil War?  Another reason why I am eager the read the book.

What is important about this question is, Turchin's first secular cycle spans TWO saecula.  Does he think we are nearing the end of the second one (1930-    ) soon (which would mean this secular cycle is ONE saecula long) or not?

I'm guessing because the Civil War was followed by the Gilded Age and that despite the destruction of the Southern elite it did not result in a significant reduction in inequality, it just shifted a good portion of the wealth from Southern planters to Northern industrialists? Given the various thinking here of a double-saeculum pattern I suspect that Turchin's cycle really is 2 saecula long, and our current time is akin to the Civil War and the next 1T will be akin to the Gilded Age.
#MakeTheDemocratsGreatAgain
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#10
(10-03-2016, 07:02 AM)Odin Wrote:
(10-02-2016, 01:13 PM)Mikebert Wrote: What I have found intriguing is how all the articles I have seen have mentioned the 1850's (i.e. the building to the Civil War 4T) as a key thing in the book, yet Turchin as this as a mid-cycle burst of instability, like the 13th century Baron's wars or the mid-Tudor crisis, which are not major episodes of unrest according to secular cycle theory.

I see the Civil War as a big deal, an example of state breakdown that marks the boundary of a secular cycle.  That is I think in modern industrial societies, Turchin's secular cycle is essentially the same as S&H's saecular cycle.  It is clear he hasn't changed his views, but how does he see the Civil War?  Another reason why I am eager the read the book.

What is important about this question is, Turchin's first secular cycle spans TWO saecula.  Does he think we are nearing the end of the second one (1930-    ) soon (which would mean this secular cycle is ONE saecula long) or not?

I'm guessing because the Civil War was followed by the Gilded Age and that despite the destruction of the Southern elite it did not result in a significant reduction in inequality, it just shifted a good portion of the wealth from Southern planters to Northern industrialists? Given the various thinking here of a double-saeculum pattern I suspect that Turchin's cycle really is 2 saecula long, and our current time is akin to the Civil War and the next 1T will be akin to the Gilded Age.

At least part of the concentration of wealth prior to the Civil War consisted of concentration of slave ownership.  Elimination of slavery resulted in a considerable reduction in concentration of wealth, as you can think of the economics as redistribution of the wealth, not just back to smaller slave owners, but to the ex-slaves themselves.

Was continued concentration of wealth in the North enough to outweigh that?  Do you have any figures, preferably with references but without would also be okay, on concentration of wealth in the North before and after the Civil War?
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#11
(10-02-2016, 11:38 PM)Warren Dew Wrote: Just pointing out that it's the Democrats who are "holding the other side in complete contempt", as you put it.

I disagree with much of the rest of your post, too - it was Marco Rubio who first referred to the size of Trump's genitals, for example, and Trump was just responding - but I have better places to get into political arguments.

...and some people really are deplorable.  Some people are good people, but they support horrible politicians.

Yes, you know what I think of Donald Trump. I consider him a lying demagogue, a bigot, a debaser of women, and a sponsor of cranky ideas. He kisses up to a nasty dictator before he is elected. He has  said horrible things about minorities. He has condoned violence on behalf of his campaign.

Good reasons exist for so many newspapers, even some very conservative ones (including the Dallas Morning News, the Detroit News, the Manchester Union-Leader, the Arizona Republic, and the San Diego Union) rndorsing someone other than Donald Trump for President.
The ideal subject of totalitarian rule is not the convinced Nazi or the dedicated Communist  but instead the people for whom the distinction between fact and fiction, true and false, no longer exists -- Hannah Arendt.


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#12
(10-03-2016, 09:15 AM)Warren Dew Wrote:
(10-03-2016, 07:02 AM)Odin Wrote:
(10-02-2016, 01:13 PM)Mikebert Wrote: What I have found intriguing is how all the articles I have seen have mentioned the 1850's (i.e. the building to the Civil War 4T) as a key thing in the book, yet Turchin as this as a mid-cycle burst of instability, like the 13th century Baron's wars or the mid-Tudor crisis, which are not major episodes of unrest according to secular cycle theory.

I see the Civil War as a big deal, an example of state breakdown that marks the boundary of a secular cycle.  That is I think in modern industrial societies, Turchin's secular cycle is essentially the same as S&H's saecular cycle.  It is clear he hasn't changed his views, but how does he see the Civil War?  Another reason why I am eager the read the book.

What is important about this question is, Turchin's first secular cycle spans TWO saecula.  Does he think we are nearing the end of the second one (1930-    ) soon (which would mean this secular cycle is ONE saecula long) or not?

I'm guessing because the Civil War was followed by the Gilded Age and that despite the destruction of the Southern elite it did not result in a significant reduction in inequality, it just shifted a good portion of the wealth from Southern planters to Northern industrialists? Given the various thinking here of a double-saeculum pattern I suspect that Turchin's cycle really is 2 saecula long, and our current time is akin to the Civil War and the next 1T will be akin to the Gilded Age.

At least part of the concentration of wealth prior to the Civil War consisted of concentration of slave ownership.  Elimination of slavery resulted in a considerable reduction in concentration of wealth, as you can think of the economics as redistribution of the wealth, not just back to smaller slave owners, but to the ex-slaves themselves.

Was continued concentration of wealth in the North enough to outweigh that?  Do you have any figures, preferably with references but without would also be okay, on concentration of wealth in the North before and after the Civil War?
For your first point exactly.  For you second, eventually, but not right away:

[Image: Amer-sec-cycles.gif]

The figure shows an estimate of GDP per worker than is not captured by the worker as a measure of inequality.  THe drop at the Civil war mostly reflects a 14% share of GDP (reflecting the portion of GDP produced by slaves) shifting from being the property of capital (their owners) to workers (the slaves themselves).  Other measures of inequality such as the faction of estate wealth in selected cities held by the top decile did not show much change.
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#13
(10-03-2016, 09:15 AM)Warren Dew Wrote:
(10-03-2016, 07:02 AM)Odin Wrote: I'm guessing because the Civil War was followed by the Gilded Age and that despite the destruction of the Southern elite it did not result in a significant reduction in inequality, it just shifted a good portion of the wealth from Southern planters to Northern industrialists? Given the various thinking here of a double-saeculum pattern I suspect that Turchin's cycle really is 2 saecula long, and our current time is akin to the Civil War and the next 1T will be akin to the Gilded Age.

At least part of the concentration of wealth prior to the Civil War consisted of concentration of slave ownership.  Elimination of slavery resulted in a considerable reduction in concentration of wealth, as you can think of the economics as redistribution of the wealth, not just back to smaller slave owners, but to the ex-slaves themselves.

Was continued concentration of wealth in the North enough to outweigh that?  Do you have any figures, preferably with references but without would also be okay, on concentration of wealth in the North before and after the Civil War?

Sorry, no figures, the above was pure speculation on my part.
#MakeTheDemocratsGreatAgain
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#14
(10-03-2016, 08:18 PM)Mikebert Wrote:
(10-03-2016, 09:15 AM)Warren Dew Wrote:
(10-03-2016, 07:02 AM)Odin Wrote:
(10-02-2016, 01:13 PM)Mikebert Wrote: What I have found intriguing is how all the articles I have seen have mentioned the 1850's (i.e. the building to the Civil War 4T) as a key thing in the book, yet Turchin as this as a mid-cycle burst of instability, like the 13th century Baron's wars or the mid-Tudor crisis, which are not major episodes of unrest according to secular cycle theory.

I see the Civil War as a big deal, an example of state breakdown that marks the boundary of a secular cycle.  That is I think in modern industrial societies, Turchin's secular cycle is essentially the same as S&H's saecular cycle.  It is clear he hasn't changed his views, but how does he see the Civil War?  Another reason why I am eager the read the book.

What is important about this question is, Turchin's first secular cycle spans TWO saecula.  Does he think we are nearing the end of the second one (1930-    ) soon (which would mean this secular cycle is ONE saecula long) or not?

I'm guessing because the Civil War was followed by the Gilded Age and that despite the destruction of the Southern elite it did not result in a significant reduction in inequality, it just shifted a good portion of the wealth from Southern planters to Northern industrialists? Given the various thinking here of a double-saeculum pattern I suspect that Turchin's cycle really is 2 saecula long, and our current time is akin to the Civil War and the next 1T will be akin to the Gilded Age.

At least part of the concentration of wealth prior to the Civil War consisted of concentration of slave ownership.  Elimination of slavery resulted in a considerable reduction in concentration of wealth, as you can think of the economics as redistribution of the wealth, not just back to smaller slave owners, but to the ex-slaves themselves.

Was continued concentration of wealth in the North enough to outweigh that?  Do you have any figures, preferably with references but without would also be okay, on concentration of wealth in the North before and after the Civil War?
For your first point exactly.  For you second, eventually, but not right away:

[Image: Amer-sec-cycles.gif]

The figure shows an estimate of GDP per worker than is not captured by the worker as a measure of inequality.  THe drop at the Civil war mostly reflects a 13% share of GDP (reflecting the portion of GDP produced by slaves) shifting from being the property of capital (their owners) to workers (the slaves themselves).  Other measures of inequality such as the faction of estate wealth in selected cities held by the top decile did not show much change.

Thanks - very interesting graph.  Can you say what the vertical dashed lines are?  And is there a source for more information?

It seems a bit strange that there was a spike upward after the start of the Civil War; the increasing concentration of slave ownership I mentioned happened before that.  Overall, the graph tends to confirm a conjecture I had that crises happen when inequality reaches a maximum value.
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#15
The graph is my own construction. The thick black line is CF (capitalist fraction), defined as

CF = 1 – (1-S)*LFPR*w%  – SS% where

S is the fraction of the population that are slaves; SS% is employer supplements to wages & salaries as a percent of GDP, LFPR is Labor Force Population Ratio and w% is employment-adjusted relative wage:

w% = wage (1-U%)/0.96 / GDPpc

Obviously SS% is zero in the 19th century (no social insurance) and S is zero after 1865. Before the 1870's there are no U% values so I use a value of 4%.  Thus for these early times w% is wage/GDPpc. I was able to estimate LFPR values before the 1940's (when official statistics begin) by using a regression with household size to estimate it as a function of household size back to 1850.  Before that it is fixed at 0.5. So if you go back to the early nation CF = 1- (1-S)/2 wage/GDPpc. 


Turchin uses wage/GDPpc as a measure in population economic well-being.  Low values signify high inequality.  CF is a proxy for the fraction of wealth creation that does not go to workers, high values signify high inequality. If you assume S = 0, CF and Turchin's measures tell the same story.

The reason CF rises sharply at the Civil War is that prices rose faster than wages during the war, which shows up as a spike up in inequality.  The sharp drop after reflects the effect of changing S from 0.14 to 0, and the relaxation of the inflation spike with the end of the war.

The vertical lines are my proposed secular cycle boundaries.

There won't be more information until I write the paper, and there is at least one in the queue ahead of it. I don't have a convenient outlet on the net for putting out stuff except for Safehaven but this stuff is not financial.
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#16
(10-02-2016, 12:45 PM)Mikebert Wrote: What I really want to see is how you can get a HUGE reduction in inequality like that seen in the 1340-1450 period or in the 1930-1970 period without massive population decline (which induces labor shortages that drive wages up) or a massive reduction in elite number through war attrition (that allows a greater fraction of economic output to flow to the lower orders). If demographics are key its pretty much one or the other.

As a potential solution I have a manuscript ready to go that just awaits a literature review of Turchin's book, which I cannot do until I read it.  It is also possible that the finished book is very different than the manuscript I read, maybe he as already come up with the stuff in my paper--he's a really smart guy.

There is a very high probability that the concept of a labor shortage will become passé in the next two or three decades ... perhaps sooner.  There are very few exceptions to the march of automation and artificial intelligence.  The single largest category of employment among the less educated is motor vehicle operation, and we know that's going in the next 10 to 15 years.  That hardly an exception to the rule, either.  Similar events will quickly neuter the economic driver of higher wages, if they haven't started to do that already.  Yet continuous declines aren't possible either ... unless we like the idea of dystopia, anarchy or revolution.

I have to wonder whether the problem can even be addressed until it manifests in earnest.  The average person doesn't see the end of work as a potential issue, so they aren't likely to see it as an issue anytime soon.  In other words, are we moving out of a paradigm we basically understand into one where we are all neophytes?  The arrival of modernity in the early 20th century was pretty overwhelming too, but human labor was still in demand.  This time, probably not.
Intelligence is not knowledge and knowledge is not wisdom, but they all play well together.
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#17
(10-04-2016, 02:56 PM)David Horn Wrote:
(10-02-2016, 12:45 PM)Mikebert Wrote: What I really want to see is how you can get a HUGE reduction in inequality like that seen in the 1340-1450 period or in the 1930-1970 period without massive population decline (which induces labor shortages that drive wages up) or a massive reduction in elite number through war attrition (that allows a greater fraction of economic output to flow to the lower orders). If demographics are key its pretty much one or the other.

As a potential solution I have a manuscript ready to go that just awaits a literature review of Turchin's book, which I cannot do until I read it.  It is also possible that the finished book is very different than the manuscript I read, maybe he as already come up with the stuff in my paper--he's a really smart guy.

There is a very high probability that the concept of a labor shortage will become passé in the next two or three decades ... perhaps sooner.

If the coming crisis war is nuclear, we could get arbitrarily large population declines, though.
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#18
(10-03-2016, 08:18 PM)Mikebert Wrote: For your first point exactly.  For you second, eventually, but not right away:

[Image: Amer-sec-cycles.gif]

The figure shows an estimate of GDP per worker than is not captured by the worker as a measure of inequality.  THe drop at the Civil war mostly reflects a 14% share of GDP (reflecting the portion of GDP produced by slaves) shifting from being the property of capital (their owners) to workers (the slaves themselves).  Other measures of inequality such as the faction of estate wealth in selected cities held by the top decile did not show much change.

Interesting that all the previous crises began when the inequality index approached 0.75.
#MakeTheDemocratsGreatAgain
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#19
(10-04-2016, 11:47 PM)Warren Dew Wrote:
(10-04-2016, 02:56 PM)David Horn Wrote:
(10-02-2016, 12:45 PM)Mikebert Wrote: What I really want to see is how you can get a HUGE reduction in inequality like that seen in the 1340-1450 period or in the 1930-1970 period without massive population decline (which induces labor shortages that drive wages up) or a massive reduction in elite number through war attrition (that allows a greater fraction of economic output to flow to the lower orders). If demographics are key its pretty much one or the other.

As a potential solution I have a manuscript ready to go that just awaits a literature review of Turchin's book, which I cannot do until I read it.  It is also possible that the finished book is very different than the manuscript I read, maybe he as already come up with the stuff in my paper--he's a really smart guy.

There is a very high probability that the concept of a labor shortage will become passé in the next two or three decades ... perhaps sooner.

If the coming crisis war is nuclear, we could get arbitrarily large population declines, though.

If we go nuclear and survive in some functional fashion I'll be shocked.  Labor shortages will be the least of our problems.
Intelligence is not knowledge and knowledge is not wisdom, but they all play well together.
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#20
(10-05-2016, 06:45 AM)Odin Wrote:
(10-03-2016, 08:18 PM)Mikebert Wrote: For your first point exactly.  For you second, eventually, but not right away:

[Image: Amer-sec-cycles.gif]

The figure shows an estimate of GDP per worker than is not captured by the worker as a measure of inequality.  THe drop at the Civil war mostly reflects a 14% share of GDP (reflecting the portion of GDP produced by slaves) shifting from being the property of capital (their owners) to workers (the slaves themselves).  Other measures of inequality such as the faction of estate wealth in selected cities held by the top decile did not show much change.

Interesting that all the previous crises began when the inequality index approached 0.75.

... except this one.  I don't think that's a good thing, by the way.  How unstable will we be if the trigger requires that much to get things started.
Intelligence is not knowledge and knowledge is not wisdom, but they all play well together.
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