A Disintegrative Winter: The Debt and Anti-Status Quo Super-Cycle Has Turned

December 5, 2016

With this list of manifestations in hand, we can practically write the headlines for 2017-2025 in advance.

How would you describe the social mood of the nation and world? Would anti-Establishment, anti-status quo, and anti-globalization be a good start? How about choking on fast-rising debt? Would stagnant growth, stagnant wages be a fair description? Or how about rising wealth/income inequality? Wouldn't rising disunity and political polarization be accurate?

These are all characteristics of the long-wave social-economic cycle that is entering the disintegrative (winter) phase. Souring social mood, loss of purchasing power, stagnating wages, rising inequality, devaluing currencies, rising debt, political polarization and elite disunity are all manifestations of this phase.

I have covered the cyclical nature of human social orders many times, most recently in We've Entered an Era of Rising Instability and Uncertainty (July 18, 2016)

Now Is the Winter of our Discontent: Our Era of Rising Discord (November 16, 2016)

How The Seeds Of Revolution Take Root: the Middle Class Loses Upward Mobility (February 26, 2016)

Historians David Hackett Fischer (The Great Wave: Price Revolutions and the Rhythm of History) and Peter Turchin (Ages of Discord) have assembled data and models for these long-term cycles.

Based on the history painstakingly assembled by Fischer and Turchin we can anticipate:

-- Ever higher prices for what I call the FEW Essentials: food, energy and water.

-- Ever larger government deficits which end in bankruptcy/repudiation of debts/new issue of currency.

-- Rising property/violent crime and illegitimacy.

-- Rising interest rates (until very recently this was considered "impossible").

-- Rising income inequality in favor of capital over labor.

-- Continued debasement of the currency.

-- Rising volatility of prices.

-- Rising political unrest and turmoil (see "Revolution").

With this list of manifestations in hand, we can practically write the headlines for 2017-2025 in advance.

Gordon Long and discuss these overlapping/ reinforcing social, political and economic cycles in a new video Cycles: Anti-Globalization and the Debt Super-Cycle. Here is a chart from the program that displays the rise of political polarization:

As for rising wealth/income inequality, the apex controls the money and thus the power:

Gordon and I also discuss the many different cyclical analyses that are now overlapping. Cyclical analyses based on demographics, socionomics, debt, wages and prices are all issuing the same conclusion: we're in the Disintegrative Winter phase of a multi-decade socio-economic cycle.

Here's our discussion of Cycles: Anti-Globalization and the Debt Super Cycle (30 minutes):

Gordon's abstract of the program: Cycles and the End of the Debt Super-Cycle

For what it's worth, my copy editor reckons Inequality and the Collapse of Privilege ($3.95 Kindle ebook, $8.95 print edition) is my best book. It is, if nothing else, highly relevant to today's economic/social schisms.

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