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ECON A Precarious Revolution Is Brewing - Charles Hugh Smith
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  1. #1
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    A Precarious Revolution Is Brewing - Charles Hugh Smith

    https://www.oftwominds.com/blogmar19...ution3-19.html

    A Precarious Revolution Is Brewing
    March 15, 2019

    Once again profound social and economic forces are changing the nation in ways that are difficult to understand in real time.

    The American Revolution arose not from politics but from rapid social and economic changes that revealed the precariousness of the colonists' prosperity. Conventional histories focus on the political context (Boston Tea Party, etc.), but more important were the changes in social relations, and the impact of the economy moving from quasi-feudal forms of patronage to an economy of impersonal market forces.

    The political revolution was the result of profound shifts in social and economic structures.

    As Gordon Wood explains in his seminal book The Radicalism of the American Revolution, it was these social changes that nurtured the revolutionary zeal of the average (non-elite) male citizen.

    Americans came to appreciate the precariousness of their prosperity, and this led to a deep split in the populace. Around 25% to 30% of the populace remained loyal to the British Crown/King, and these Loyalists reckoned it a political and economic disaster to separate from the "Mother Country."

    The majority felt the exact opposite: their prosperity and liberties were all too easily snatched away by a Parliament and/or a Monarch who had little to no regard for their prosperity or liberties.

    The precariousness of the relatively widely distributed prosperity and political liberties drove average people into an all-or-nothing choice: there was no middle ground, and the bitterness of the divide was life-changing. Benjamin Franklin, for example, completely cut off his eldest son when the son remained a Loyalist, despite the decades of affectionate intimacy they'd shared.

    Such prosperity and liberties that existed were reserved for Caucasian males, of course; women had the right to divorce and own property but no political suffrage, and slaves had no rights unless they were freed by their owners.

    The social changes in the family and economy Wood describes are of especially keen interest, as they mirror the present era in so many ways. Parents in the 1760s were admonished to treat their children as individuals and to use reason rather than punishment. Parental authority was thus reduced from rigid authoritarianism to a much more nuanced and difficult process of nurturing and guidance--a process familiar to every parent today.
    The economy was changing rapidly as well, as the lines of authority that were once personal became market-contractual. Where small farmers in the early 1700s sold their harvests to gentry planters or merchants, by mid-century Scottish trading houses were buying small farmers' harvests directly, requiring written contracts rather than personal trust.

    Small farmers made more money, and the landed gentry lost power over the flow of goods.

    This disruption of traditional authority stretched from the home to the marketplace and ultimately to the British Crown and Parliament, which saw the rebellious colonists as wayward children who needed a good lashing to set them straight.

    All of which brings us to the present, when once again profound social and economic forces are changing the nation in ways that are difficult to understand in real time. Traditional authority is weakening, and traditional social relations and markets are being disrupted, leaving most participants far more financially precarious than they were a few decades ago.

    To take one important example: where owning a home once meant counting on slow and steady appreciation of home equity, in today's bubble-and-bust economy, timing is everything: poor timing can trigger the loss of one's down payment and home equity, and capturing that equity requires selling at the top.
    As I noted last week in What If Politics Can't Fix What's Broken?, politics as practiced in a bygone era of stability no longer offers any solutions to these profound disruptions. Middle ground has vanished, and ideologies have become quasi-religious because they no longer offer any practical guidance to a society and economy that are being transformed by the 4th Industrial Revolution, resource depletion and demographics.

    Once again Americans are awakening to the precariousness of their prosperity and liberties, and traditional forms of belonging, loyalty and authority are unraveling. As the pie shrinks, the struggle to maintain one's own share at the expense of others becomes Darwinian, and so it's no surprise that finance and politics are increasingly winner-take-all or winner-take-most zero-sum endeavors.

    The elite college admissions scandal is a timely example of this dynamic: those with $500,000 can bribe the right people in the centralized hierarchy to get their Little Darling onto a winner-take-most career track.

    A precarious revolution is brewing, as the old social, political and economic structures unravel and fail. The sober politics of compromise is giving way to the expedient politics of bread and circuses, borrowing whatever sums are needed to placate every corrupt, parasitic elite and every demanding constituency. This is the pathway to financial ruin as the currency will be destroyed by the politics of expediency.

    New social, political and economic structures will arise that are stable because they reflect new realities. Describing these structures is the purpose of my books:
    Pathfinding our Destiny: Preventing the Final Fall of Our Democratic Republic
    Money and Work Unchained
    A Radically Beneficial World: Automation, Technology and Creating Jobs for All: The Future Belongs to Work That Is Meaningful.

    The politics of failed ideologies and financial expediency will not end well.
    The wonder of our time isnít how angry we are at politics and politicians; itís how little weíve done about it. - Fran Porretto
    -http://bastionofliberty.blogspot.com/2016/10/a-wholly-rational-hatred.html

  2. #2
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    The ability actually do things and make things will come back into vogue.

    We are saturated with cubicle dwelling, useless eaters and are seeing a dearth of people who have enough snap to get out of the road (while looking at their phone).

    The degreed maroons continue to amaze me with the pride they take in their own ignorance...especially when you multiply it by their smug arrogance.

    If I was back in the service sector now, my approach would be much different than it was 20 years ago.

    Every condescending prick I had to deal with as a customer would get bent over and I'd try to break it off in them.
    Proud Infidel...............and Cracker

    Member: Nowski Brigade

    Deplorable


  3. #3
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    Every condescending prick I had to deal with as a customer would get bent over and I'd try to break it off in them.

    That seems to be the case in this area … some folks get "family rates" and some folks get treated like cash cow customers, depending on how they treat the plumber/electrician/mechanic/whoever.
    The wonder of our time isnít how angry we are at politics and politicians; itís how little weíve done about it. - Fran Porretto
    -http://bastionofliberty.blogspot.com/2016/10/a-wholly-rational-hatred.html

  4. #4
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    Our American Revolution was a product of The Great Enlightenment (radical new philosophy and politics leading to a rare alignment of wise and relatively selfless men at the top of our social and economic class system), plus physical distance from the Mothership. Then, our success was more or less guaranteed by a select body of risk-takers (the colonists as a whole) holding the keys to a huge, rich new continent right outside their back door. Nobody could stay pissed at us for long, because they wanted to trade with us, or BE us.

    Those conditions probably won't ever happen again...at least on this planet.

  5. #5
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    The majority of colonists did not support the revolution. Of the three blocks the neutral block was initially the largest. But it was not a majority.
    Less typing, more prepping.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dozdoats View Post
    Every condescending prick I had to deal with as a customer would get bent over and I'd try to break it off in them.

    That seems to be the case in this area … some folks get "family rates" and some folks get treated like cash cow customers, depending on how they treat the plumber/electrician/mechanic/whoever.
    Can you fault them?

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by WalknTrot View Post
    Our American Revolution was a product of The Great Enlightenment (radical new philosophy and politics leading to a rare alignment of wise and relatively selfless men at the top of our social and economic class system), plus physical distance from the Mothership. Then, our success was more or less guaranteed by a select body of risk-takers (the colonists as a whole) holding the keys to a huge, rich new continent right outside their back door. Nobody could stay pissed at us for long, because they wanted to trade with us, or BE us.

    Those conditions probably won't ever happen again...at least on this planet.
    It would only with a massive die off.

  8. #8
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    Can you fault them?

    No - but it's amusing to watch. All those flatland tourister folks and johnny come latelies who put on that they are so much smarter, so much richer, so much better edumacated than the hill folks who are working for them... DW was born here, I'm a redneck transplant (from the Appalachian foothills in AL) so the culture gap is not terribly wide.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RHQkH1TH2Gg
    Culture Guide to the Appalachians: Crash Course for The Hills
    RT 14:02
    The wonder of our time isnít how angry we are at politics and politicians; itís how little weíve done about it. - Fran Porretto
    -http://bastionofliberty.blogspot.com/2016/10/a-wholly-rational-hatred.html

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by WalknTrot View Post
    Our American Revolution was a product of The Great Enlightenment (radical new philosophy and politics leading to a rare alignment of wise and relatively selfless men at the top of our social and economic class system), plus physical distance from the Mothership. Then, our success was more or less guaranteed by a select body of risk-takers (the colonists as a whole) holding the keys to a huge, rich new continent right outside their back door. Nobody could stay pissed at us for long, because they wanted to trade with us, or BE us.

    Those conditions probably won't ever happen again...at least on this planet.
    Quote Originally Posted by 20Gauge View Post
    It would only with a massive die off.
    Probably truer than you think . . . the massive die off. I've been looking at world population figures for a few weeks and it seemed odd to me that the population of the planet seems to have remained stable under 200 million for most of the last 12,000 years. Even in China the population seems to have remained under 60 million. Seems odd to me that world population for most of history was less than the US population is today.
    I looked at the long term chart that ran from about 10,000 BC to present and notice that the population began rising around 1400 and then really took off around 1750. And I wondered "what happened around 1400 that contributed to that population growth".
    My hypothesis is the Gutenberg Press and the beginning of literacy. Knowledge and science began to be easily distributed - and each generation did not have to "reinvent the wheel". By 1750, the Age of Enlightenment, literacy had reached something like 50%.

    Now, we have very high literacy rates however, we also have very high rates of documented information that isn't true. I think it was Ronald Reagan that said 'It isn't so much that liberals are ignorant. It's just that they know so many things that aren't so.' And it will probably be the downfall.
    Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap, which have neither storehouse nor barn; and God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than a pesky raven?
    It is difficult to stand idly by and watch the vacuum of ignorance being filled with lies

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by raven View Post
    Probably truer than you think . . . the massive die off. I've been looking at world population figures for a few weeks and it seemed odd to me that the population of the planet seems to have remained stable under 200 million for most of the last 12,000 years. Even in China the population seems to have remained under 60 million. Seems odd to me that world population for most of history was less than the US population is today.
    I looked at the long term chart that ran from about 10,000 BC to present and notice that the population began rising around 1400 and then really took off around 1750. And I wondered "what happened around 1400 that contributed to that population growth".
    My hypothesis is the Gutenberg Press and the beginning of literacy. Knowledge and science began to be easily distributed - and each generation did not have to "reinvent the wheel". By 1750, the Age of Enlightenment, literacy had reached something like 50%.

    Now, we have very high literacy rates however, we also have very high rates of documented information that isn't true. I think it was Ronald Reagan that said 'It isn't so much that liberals are ignorant. It's just that they know so many things that aren't so.' And it will probably be the downfall.
    Interesting.

    Thanks for sharing.


    intothegoodnight
    "Do not go gentle into that good night.
    Rage, rage against the dying of the light."

    ó Dylan Thomas, "Do Not Go Gentle Into That Good Night"

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by raven View Post
    Probably truer than you think . . . the massive die off. I've been looking at world population figures for a few weeks and it seemed odd to me that the population of the planet seems to have remained stable under 200 million for most of the last 12,000 years. Even in China the population seems to have remained under 60 million. Seems odd to me that world population for most of history was less than the US population is today.
    I looked at the long term chart that ran from about 10,000 BC to present and notice that the population began rising around 1400 and then really took off around 1750. And I wondered "what happened around 1400 that contributed to that population growth".
    My hypothesis is the Gutenberg Press and the beginning of literacy. Knowledge and science began to be easily distributed - and each generation did not have to "reinvent the wheel". By 1750, the Age of Enlightenment, literacy had reached something like 50%.

    Now, we have very high literacy rates however, we also have very high rates of documented information that isn't true. I think it was Ronald Reagan that said 'It isn't so much that liberals are ignorant. It's just that they know so many things that aren't so.' And it will probably be the downfall.
    Population explosion took off with the industrial revolution......other factors contributed but when machines took over for man and beast a quantum leap in food product, sourced water and energy to run society on was the game changer.........and as the population exploded so did advances in medicine that kept that population alive longer............

    Do you realize there are more people alive today on this planet over the age of 50 than have lived through the entire history of the human race?

    Without the industrial revolution the human population taped out around 1 billion...........today it is 7.8 billion and get this....

    it grows by a net of 200,000 people every day!

    And there is only one group among them that doesn't have a net increase......the White race.....in fact Whites have been decreasing.........but the rest of the non Whites will overload the world's carrying capacity.

  12. #12
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    the rest of the non Whites will overload the world's carrying capacity.

    And yet somehow they are the only ones not concerned about that - or condemned for it.
    The wonder of our time isnít how angry we are at politics and politicians; itís how little weíve done about it. - Fran Porretto
    -http://bastionofliberty.blogspot.com/2016/10/a-wholly-rational-hatred.html

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by 20Gauge View Post
    It would only with a massive die off.
    Quote Originally Posted by WalknTrot View Post
    Our American Revolution was a product of The Great Enlightenment (radical new philosophy and politics leading to a rare alignment of wise and relatively selfless men at the top of our social and economic class system), plus physical distance from the Mothership. Then, our success was more or less guaranteed by a select body of risk-takers (the colonists as a whole) holding the keys to a huge, rich new continent right outside their back door. Nobody could stay pissed at us for long, because they wanted to trade with us, or BE us.

    Those conditions probably won't ever happen again...at least on this planet.
    Quote Originally Posted by PghPanther View Post
    Population explosion took off with the industrial revolution......other factors contributed but when machines took over for man and beast a quantum leap in food product, sourced water and energy to run society on was the game changer.........and as the population exploded so did advances in medicine that kept that population alive longer............

    Do you realize there are more people alive today on this planet over the age of 50 than have lived through the entire history of the human race?

    Without the industrial revolution the human population taped out around 1 billion...........today it is 7.8 billion and get this....

    it grows by a net of 200,000 people every day!

    And there is only one group among them that doesn't have a net increase......the White race.....in fact Whites have been decreasing.........but the rest of the non Whites will overload the world's carrying capacity.
    The industrial revolution was made possible by distribution of technical knowledge.
    Consider the ravens, for they neither sow nor reap, which have neither storehouse nor barn; and God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than a pesky raven?
    It is difficult to stand idly by and watch the vacuum of ignorance being filled with lies

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by raven View Post
    The industrial revolution was made possible by distribution of technical knowledge.
    And vary little tax. Especially No income tax. A penalty for being independent.

  15. #15
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    Ag advancements allowed fewer people to feed more of the populace. The Middle Ages saw the invention of a three-field system of crop rotation and the importation of the Chinese-invented moldboard plow, vastly improving agricultural efficiency.

    There was organized farming by serfdom and then the plague disrupted that as people became unbound to an overlord and tenant farming came into play. After 1492 the world's agricultural patterns were shuffled in the widespread exchange of plants and animals known as the Columbian Exchange. Crops and animals that were previously only known in the Old World were now transplanted to the New World and vice versa. Perhaps most notably, the tomato became a favorite in European cuisine, and maize and potatoes were widely adopted. Other transplanted crops include pineapple, cocoa, and tobacco. In the other direction, several wheat strains quickly took to western hemisphere soils and became a dietary staple even for native North, Central, and South Americans.[Ref New World Encyclopedia.]

    You also had hybridization and the enclosure of the commons. After that, mechanization reduced farmers necessary to feed people down to a very small percentage of the population.

    If you watch those BBC programs on different era farms, you can see how dramatically things changed.
    "During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act." George Orwell

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