Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Human cycles: History as science (new wave of violence predicted for US)
Nature ^ | 1 Aug 2012 | Laura Spinney

Posted on 08/02/2012 5:27:33 PM PDT by rjbemsha

Researcher Peter Turchin sees two cycles driving political instability. The secular cycle, lasting two to three centuries, starts with a relatively egalitarian society (supply and demand for labour roughly balance). But over time, population grows, labour supply outstrips demand, elites form and the living standards of the poorest fall. Then the society becomes top-heavy with elites, who start fighting for power. Political instability ensues, leading to collapse, and the cycle begins again. The shorter fathers-and-sons cycle, spanning 50 years or two generations, interacts with the longer cycle. Turchin sees this cycle peaking around 1870 (ethnic strife, class resentment), 1920 (race riots, workers' strikes, and anti-Communist feeling), and 1970 (violent student demonstrations, political assassinations, riots and terrorism). Then....

(Excerpt) Read more at nature.com ...


TOPICS: History; Science
KEYWORDS: cliodynamics; godsgravesglyphs; history; malthusianwetdreams; peterturchin; peterturdchin; violencecycles
...50 years from 1970 brings us to a projected peak around 2020. Turchin says: [It] "...will probably be at least as high as the one in around 1970. I hope it won't be as bad as 1870.”
1 posted on 08/02/2012 5:27:45 PM PDT by rjbemsha
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: rjbemsha
labour supply outstrips demand

Shouldn't happen except in a dead economy where entrepreneurial behavior has been smothered. Even in poor countries, people generate their own employment. The idea that a job is something someone gives you is part of the problem. It comes from a top-down mentality.

But another part of the top-down mentality is the necessity of permission before you can engage in some kind of entrepreneurial activity. Its a self-reinforcing vicious circle.

You have a job because someone gives it to you. He gives you a job because someone gives him a contract. Entrepreneurs despair of getting permission to do what they do and eventually wander off to where the air is freer.

Of course, the more restrictive the economy is, the more certain that the living breathing part of the economy is off the books.

2 posted on 08/02/2012 5:42:27 PM PDT by marron
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: rjbemsha

“Turchin’s approach — which he calls cliodynamics after Clio, the ancient Greek muse of history — is part of a groundswell of efforts to apply scientific methods to history by identifying and modelling the broad social forces that Turchin and his colleagues say shape all human societies”

Um. There’s already a name for this, jerk.

It’s “Psychohistory”.

Get with the program.


3 posted on 08/02/2012 5:49:55 PM PDT by Psycho_Bunny (OWS = The Great American Snivel War)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: rjbemsha
Interesting stuff. But the way I see it some frequencies match any others. This chicken will seem to be dancing in time with just about any music you play behind it. Lowest common denominator in action, I guess.


4 posted on 08/02/2012 5:52:16 PM PDT by I see my hands (It's time to.. KICK OUT THE JAMS, MOTHER FREEPERS!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: marron

I asked my 95 year old mother how they had survived the depression. They raised their own food. No food crops allowed in my subdivision; likewise no farm animals. They didn’t have property taxes so they could stay in the home they owned without any income. My property taxes have gone up several hundred percent since 1994. My grandfather took big jobs from constructing buildings to moving safes to second floors, to installing windows. Each of those jobs today requires permits, insurance, safety inspections; money, money, money before you can even attempt to bid a job. My grandfather hired employees as needed to help him. Today he’d have to pay unemployment insurance.
If you want to make money the government is going to be your noisy, intrusive partner who takes, but gives nothing.


5 posted on 08/02/2012 5:53:09 PM PDT by Gen.Blather
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: marron

The higher education scam in the developed world is producing many graduates with degrees that lead nowhere. This is precisely what happened in Egypt in the decade before Egypt’s current explosion.

Graduates with worthless skills and an inflated sense of their own value are fodder for movements like OWS.


6 posted on 08/02/2012 5:57:41 PM PDT by rjbemsha
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: marron
As long as we refuse to be beaten, we are not.

America's shining gem is our personal liberty and freedom.

Free to think and act on our thoughts without encumbrance.


I stepped back and read what I just wrote and need to clarify;

We are free as capitalists to think and invent and act on what we've thought.


THAT has been our crowning achievement and contribution to mankind and the planet ...

I don't know the percentage of what nation contributed what (though I'm pretty sure the muslims have contributed nothing, no matter WHAT the fascilitator in chief may say), I DO know that many men have left other lands to come here and take that silly, unreadable scratching on a cafe' napkin and build an empire from it (I made that up, but you get the idea)


As long as we think, and act on our thoughts, we are free ... and mighty ... men.

7 posted on 08/02/2012 6:10:16 PM PDT by knarf (I say things that are true ... I have no proof ... but they're true)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 2 | View Replies]

To: rjbemsha
The higher education scam in the developed world is producing many graduates with degrees that lead nowhere.

Unless you study at a tech school, or engineering, your degree probably doesn't directly relate to a job. Not a problem; you take a job on the shop floor and, if you're smart and you work hard, in a few years you've worked your way into the corner office. Or having learned the business, you've started up your own shop.

Graduates with worthless skills and an inflated sense of their own value are fodder for movements like OWS.

Exactly. The problem isn't that they studied humanities instead of technology, the problem is that they thought someone owed them a job with a white collar because of it. There's nothing wrong with a guy with a literature degree working as a longshoreman while he writes his great novel. Or a guy with a degree in sociology going to work as a welder's helper when he gets out of college. Or remodeling houses with his uncle. The problem is just as you say, the inflated sense of your own value and as I say, the death of the entrepreneurial spirit. Thinking a job is a commodity, something someone gives you.

8 posted on 08/02/2012 6:13:08 PM PDT by marron
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: knarf
As long as we think, and act on our thoughts, we are free ... and mighty ... men.

Good post.

9 posted on 08/02/2012 6:15:32 PM PDT by marron
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: rjbemsha

1870? Wasn’t there a wee peak around 1861-1865?


10 posted on 08/02/2012 6:24:15 PM PDT by muir_redwoods (Legalize Freedom!!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Gen.Blather
I asked my 95 year old mother how they had survived the depression. They raised their own food. No food crops allowed in my subdivision; likewise no farm animals. They didn’t have property taxes so they could stay in the home they owned without any income. My property taxes have gone up several hundred percent since 1994. My grandfather took big jobs from constructing buildings to moving safes to second floors, to installing windows. Each of those jobs today requires permits, insurance, safety inspections; money, money, money before you can even attempt to bid a job. My grandfather hired employees as needed to help him. Today he’d have to pay unemployment insurance.

Exactly. The more we try to regulate economic activity, the more we choke it off. I was thinking precisely about how our grandfathers made it through the depression, and how I've seen people survive in third-world economies. They become very entrepreneurial. Where that spirit has been regulated out or bred out or choked out, you have social explosions because people are expecting the government to provide something it isn't providing. Where people are free to do for themselves, and their efforts are protected, they don't lash out. They survive and then thrive.

Where they are taught not to do for themselves, and the regulators punish them for doing for themselves, you have social explosions. In a world where freedom is illegal, only pirates are free, I think. I think we're further down that road than most people realize. You have to have permission to sell lemonade in front of your house. I mean, really.

11 posted on 08/02/2012 6:28:37 PM PDT by marron
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: Gen.Blather

It’s worse than that!

They’ve added SS taxes, workman’s comp and mandatory wage garnishment if the worker owes back taxes or child support. You have to have a license to do almost any kind of work...and this involves kissing a union’s ass, taking a rigged test, and taking worthless classes every year that literally amount to “protection money” paid to goddam union pricks. You have to be a registered contractor in every state you work in which requires special bonds and insurance. health insurance is a massive expense. If you do a job for the government, you have Bacon-Davis to contend with. The DOT does spot inspection of company vehicles and they have all sorts of stupid rules they can’t wait to issue fines for. OSHA and the EPA are always threatening you.


12 posted on 08/02/2012 6:31:26 PM PDT by mamelukesabre
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; decimon; 1010RD; 21twelve; 24Karet; 2ndDivisionVet; ...

 GGG managers are SunkenCiv, StayAt HomeMother & Ernest_at_the_Beach
Thanks rjbemsha, but of course, this is just a variant of the 52 year cycle nonsense.

Human societies start to decline when they start limiting family sizes. Sometimes there's a brief period when there seems to be greater prosperity, but that is followed by implosion.

This is the exact opposite of the Malthusian model, which holds that it's necessary to reduce the future population growth in order to maintain enough "pie" -- but it's not surprising, because Malthusians are all @&&hxlxs.

To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list.


13 posted on 08/02/2012 8:43:55 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: rjbemsha

As the Left breaks down the self-discipline of Judeo-Christian religions, more and more laws are needed simply to keep people from devouring each other.
- Dennis Prager, Sept. 20, 2005 -


14 posted on 08/02/2012 8:52:29 PM PDT by donna ("...gay couples raising kids. That's the American way..." -Mitt Romney, 2007)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Gen.Blather
If you want to make money the government is going to be your noisy, intrusive partner who takes, but gives nothing.

Until the downtrodden peasants with pitchforks storm the Bastille. Then events tend to go too far in the other direction. The Tea Party is a feeble harbinger of much worse to come unless the government comes to its senses. We all know it won't.

15 posted on 08/02/2012 9:41:05 PM PDT by Bernard Marx
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: Psycho_Bunny
Get with the program.

Yep. Soft science and deconstructionism. Check the born on date. This one is not so savvy. Sadly, others have been.
16 posted on 08/02/2012 9:47:27 PM PDT by PA Engineer ("We're not programs, Gerty, We're People")
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: knarf

Hear, hear!


17 posted on 08/02/2012 9:58:35 PM PDT by P.O.E. (Pray for America)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 7 | View Replies]

To: muir_redwoods

Yes, there were other wee peaks 1914-18 and 1962-73. Interestingly, these wee peaks also were about 50 yrs apart.


18 posted on 08/02/2012 9:58:35 PM PDT by rjbemsha
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: PA Engineer; Psycho_Bunny
But over time, population grows, labour supply outstrips demand, elites form and the living standards of the poorest fall.

This is demonstrably false and utter nonsense. It simply regurgitates the same Leftist pablum they've been dishing out for over a century.

Population growth is a good thing and a sign of hope in the future. The general supply of labor cannot outstrip general demand for labor in a free market, so the blame here is government intervention. Elites always exist. Good societies have elites by merit while bad ones have political elites. The living standards of the "poor" rise along with all living standards in a free society. It cannot be helped, so again growing disparity points to politics and thus this is a governmental problem.

Finally, we should be very skeptical of this theory since the desperate to believe something atheists love it: Maybe 2020 will see a global revolution against corrupt uber-elites whose corporations stand in the way of a sustainable future and global justice.

19 posted on 08/03/2012 2:35:19 AM PDT by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 16 | View Replies]

To: rjbemsha

But what about the 1930’s and 40’s? A LOT happened then.

1930s
-Hitler came to power; Nazis pass purity laws; Krystalnacht
-Stalin’s purges; millions starve; gulags full
-Japanese officer assasinations and militarism
-Victory bonus riots; Depression

1940s
-World War II
-Communists gain half the world’s population
-Mao kills millions

The problem is, you could do this with virtually every decade in history...


20 posted on 08/03/2012 4:09:17 AM PDT by Alas Babylon!
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 18 | View Replies]

To: 1010RD
Exactly correct.

Check out this line from the article:

Just as an epidemic can be averted by an effective vaccine, violence can be prevented if society is prepared to learn from history — if the US government creates more jobs for graduates, say, or acts decisively to reduce inequality.

Bwahahaha! The GOVERNMENT cannot mandate more jobs. If so, then Obama would be a hero with no unemployment by now. Reduces inequality? Defined as and by who? Oh, how noble, comrade! Raise your fist in a power salute!

21 posted on 08/03/2012 4:14:59 AM PDT by Alas Babylon!
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: rjbemsha

What the man has done is to develop a method for integrating biorhythm cycles into two new cycles with long periods.

I doubt it.


22 posted on 08/03/2012 4:16:54 AM PDT by bert ((K.E. N.P. N.C. +12 ..... Present failure and impending death yield irrational action))
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: rjbemsha
he researchers found that two trends dominate the data on political instability. The first, which they call the secular cycle, extends over two to three centuries. It starts with a relatively egalitarian society, in which supply and demand for labour roughly balance out.

Would really like to see how they decide where to set the "start" of a society.

In time, the population grows, labour supply outstrips demand, elites form and the living standards of the poorest fall. At a certain point, the society becomes top-heavy with elites, who start fighting for power. Political instability ensues and leads to collapse, and the cycle begins again.

Somewhat of a restating of Malthus. It works in some societies, most notably I would suggest in the Mandate of Heaven cycle of Chinese dynasties of the last 3000 years. But that is in a society with little major technological change.

It seems pretty clear to me that the Industrial Revolution and succeeding technological change have drastically changed the story from what it was in previous millenia.

This approach in general reminds me of Toynbee, who saw similar cycles, though not calendar-based, in the life of civilizations, which he saw as essentially organisms. Tremendously impressed me at first, and I still see value in some aspects of his thought. But then I began to see how belief in his theories required a great deal of "scrunching" to get things to fit. I'm sure this theory is the same.

23 posted on 08/03/2012 6:20:28 AM PDT by Sherman Logan
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Psycho_Bunny

Awwww... I was all prepared with a Hari Seldon response, and saw that you beat me to it! :^)


24 posted on 08/03/2012 6:39:51 AM PDT by Teacher317 ('Tis time to fear when tyrants seem to kiss.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: Alas Babylon!

I like your last question because it points to the major flaw in all liberal thinking: definitions. They just make things up and let their imaginations fill in the facts. Try to pin them down on the meaning of “sustainable” or “hate” and they flutter away in confusion.


25 posted on 08/03/2012 2:45:07 PM PDT by 1010RD (First, Do No Harm)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: Gen.Blather
I asked my 95 year old mother how they had survived the depression. They raised their own food. No food crops allowed in my subdivision; likewise no farm animals. They didn’t have property taxes so they could stay in the home they owned without any income. My property taxes have gone up several hundred percent since 1994. My grandfather took big jobs from constructing buildings to moving safes to second floors, to installing windows. Each of those jobs today requires permits, insurance, safety inspections; money, money, money before you can even attempt to bid a job. My grandfather hired employees as needed to help him. Today he’d have to pay unemployment insurance.

You could always go underground, stay off the radar so to speak. Even in the old Soviet Union, the black market was thriving with everything from blue jeans to rock and roll records.
26 posted on 08/03/2012 4:29:15 PM PDT by Nowhere Man (June 28th, 2012, the Day America Jumped The Shark.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 5 | View Replies]

To: 1010RD
I believe in a cycle of politics in the US. It seems that about every 80 years or so we have a change of course 180 degrees from the previous one with an inter regium of weak POLs in between.
27 posted on 08/04/2012 10:18:10 AM PDT by Little Bill
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 19 | View Replies]

To: rjbemsha

I attended a water quality board meeting concerning proposed regulation and engaged in a conversation with their attorney. The basic premise of regulation is to stop actions that result in substantial harm to public health and safety. The landowner should have the presumed right to do what he wants with his property until he harms someone else. However, an action that will substantially harm the general public can be “permitted” conditionally upon avoidance, minimization and mitigation of the harm to a less than harmful impact. This is the premise of regulation.

In the case of the current practice of mposing “conditional waivers” on activities that could harm impaired water quality, everyone is presumed to fall under the waiver. This allows the board to request verification, monitoring, plans with benchmarks and reporting to prove that you are still not harming water quality. (Presumed guilty until shown otherwise.) The attorney told me that their responsibility is to protect water quality and they have to show the environmentalists that they are doing their job.

This is also like suction dredging for gold mining. The law is written that the miner must show his activities are NOT deleterious to fish. Your liberty and freedom is gone. Gone is the presumption that you can do what you want with your property unless it harms others. Now the presumption is that it harms others and you have to show it doesn’t. Individual interest is only tolerated by the common good That is the communal, the collective destroying our individual liberty. It is the basis for European style socialism. That is oppression and one source of why some sort of pendulum swing will occur.


28 posted on 08/04/2012 11:28:25 AM PDT by marsh2
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
General/Chat
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson