The technetronic era involves the gradual appearance of a more controlled
society... dominated by an elite, unrestrained by traditional values...Unhindered
by the restraints of traditional liberal values, this elite would not hesitate to
achieve its political ends by using the latest modern techniques for influencing
public behavior and keeping society under close surveillance and control.
 - Zbigniew Brzezinski, Between Two Ages: America in the Technetronic Era

Sic transit gloria mundi

A "Dark" look Ahead
10/29/2019

Looking at the quote above, we have to ask, "Was Brzezinski prescient? How did HE know way back in 1982 about Microsoft's Gates and Allen, Apple's Jobs and Cook, Amazon's Bezos, Facebook's Zuckerberg, Google's Page and Pichai, and Soros?

Pursuant to an understanding of what is going to happen in the future, we hardly need to be reminded that because of personal bias, the myriad of factors, and always being short of a complete handle on them, it is a very complex array of information that we have to look at and deal with. To have much hope of success in building some valid construct, we must identify, isolate, and analyze the major factors that will prevail. Thus the 16 headings of sections below:

1. Historical Developments
2. Psychological Forces
3. Societal Factors
4. Educational Factors
5. Religious Factors
     a. Renaissance and Reformation
     b. Islam
6. USA Financial Factors
    a. U.S. Treasury Manipulation in commodities and futures markets
7. USA Substance Abuse Factors
8. Multiculturalism
9. Geopolitical Factors
     a. Geopolitical Competition
     b. Russian Hegemony in Iran
     c. Iran at War with Israel
     d. Russian and Chinese Incursion into the Western Hemisphere
10. Anthropogenic Global Warming
     a. Mark Levin interviews Patrick Michael
     b. John Stossel looks at Global Warming
     c. Anthony Watts talks about the effect of Urbanization
11. The Debasement of Politics
12. Other Factors
13. Vanishing of the Big Dream
14.The Thunderbolts Group
15. Catastrophic Human Brutalization
16. More Questions
17. The "Bright" Side

Historical Developments

America is around 250 years old, 150 years since the War of Secession, erroneously called the Civil War. This is an advanced age in the context of the historical average nation only lasting about 200 years between bloody revolutions. Granted that America was a new and better development on the stage of human culture, government and politics, there is no God-given guarantee of its immortality.

Germane to the subject are some fundamental facts to keep in mind:

1. Shortly after the end of WW2, it was an idyllic era to be an American. The U.S. probably had more wealth than the rest of the world combined.
2. The average citizen accumulated so much stuff that he had to rent a storage unit, after filling up his two-car garage.
3. The USSR collapsed, and the U.S. government went on to become the world’s only superpower and establish a political and financial quasi-empire.
4. The last couple of generations of prosperity were financed mostly with borrowed money.
5. Governments and sometimes even countries have a lifespan, come and go, rise and fall.
6. After the end of the Golden Age and the world destruction of that cataclysm and the post cataclysmic global catastrophes, things started getting better every millennium. Then they started getting better by the century. Then, with the Renaissance and the Enlightenment, by the decade. Since the Industrial Revolution, about 200 years ago, they’ve been getting better every year. This has been an accelerating, somewhat exponential trend, but for how long?.

The invention of cheap paper and the printing press has allowed for the permanent storage and easy dissemination and easy access of knowledge. This laid a big part of the foundation for the knowledge explosion. Of course, another part was the consumption of knowledge through an explosion in literacy and more advanced education. All part of the Renaissance,  the Enlightenment, and the Industrial Revolution.

Equally important to this accelerating trend was the development of civil and capitalistic structures: Banks, business and property laws, courts and other civil and infrastructure agencies, corporations, economic legal framework, etc. All invigorated by improvements in travel and communication technology, including a longer productive lifespan in modernized countries.

There are more scientists and engineers alive today than have lived in all previous eras of human history put together. Technology is exploding at an exponential rate, which undergirds all the other aspects. Energy generation, agricultural production, materials development, and information storage capacity have also leaped ahead. Now we don't rely so much on paper and its disadvantages for storage and dissemination because we have electronic digital storage and network transmission including the internet, with all of its features like email and a billion websites. Every structure – technological, educational, business, wealth development – that matures adds up to a bigger platform for continued acceleration in the trends.

In terms of prosperity:

What is important? From a long-term point of view, there are really just three things: science, technology, and capital. Science lets you understand how and why things work. Technology lets you put the theory into practice. And capital gives you the time and material to make use of science and technology. - Doug Casey

We may be generally aware of all the factors, but what we don't usually do is to recognize the synergistic effect. All of the above may have an unanticipated effect upon the historical cycle of periodic revolution.

Psychological Forces

Those that understand the psychological forces that shape human history may easily think that America is on a course to a violent revolution. Almost no one understands that class resentment is one, if not the major, factor that drives disenchantment to the point of revolt. People do not have to undergo harsh oppression to become angry and upset. Americans can endure austerity, sacrifice, natural disasters and war, but they have gotten a good taste of equality and liberty, and they will chafe under oppression and egregious artificial or arbitrary inequality of opportunity and rewards.

The crippling or destruction of America by bloody revolution? Unthinkable, but not unprecedented. Remember the so-called Civil War of 150 years ago.[1] What WOULD be unusual would be a nation that lasts much longer than 150 years between violent revolutions. To entertain this possibility for the near future of the USA is to not just look at the historical pattern but to understand the plethora of problems that have developed in America that challenge political stability. The United States has lost much of its middle-class, and residential neighborhoods are becoming even more Balkanized, with the extremes being gated communities versus ghettos. The rich or quasi-ruling class are segregating themselves into "more secure" enclaves of high-end residences.

Societal Factors

In his book Ship of Fools: How a Selfish Ruling Class is Bringing America to the Brink of Revolution, Tucker Carlson itemizes and describes a long list of ultimately fatal sins that are being fostered by America's economic and social ruling elite. (He) "tells the story of the new American elites, a group whose power and wealth has grown beyond imagination [think in terms of 1000 to 5000 tons of gold] even as the rest of the country has somewhat withered. The people who run America now barely interact with it. They fly on their own planes, ski on their own mountains, watch sporting events far from the stands in skyboxes. They have total contempt for the common man)."

The litany of disastrous developments is long. The news media has largely lost its ethical balance and perspective, is heavily weighted to the liberal political philosophy, is hopelessly biased and corrupt with a destructive political agenda instead of a faithful reporting agenda.[2] America's wealth has overwhelmingly been concentrated into the hands of the few, with 90% controlled by one percent of the population. The discrepancy between the wealth and income of the middle and lower classes and the "elite" has become obscene and dangerous, and even some of the elite are recognizing that.

America's physical infrastructure has not been maintained but has been allowed to become old and decrepit. Bridges, dams, rails, harbors, roads and sewer systems need attention. Our electrical grid system is old and far too vulnerable to system failure. In northern California, Pacific Gas & Electric (PGE) has failed miserably to maintain its infrastructure, and has gone bankrupt. The whole of northern California is now subject to massive blackouts, which are going to have widespread negative effects. If the electrical grid system in the U.S. goes down, it ALL goes down, and we are back in the dark ages overnight!

What in the big picture is even worse is that America is no longer a classless society or a meritocracy. The upper or ruling class relate to the lower class of people more as necessary resources instead of equal fellow citizens; kind of like sheep to be sheared but not slaughtered. As long as they keep their place. This has long been the way of the world and is nothing new. HOWEVER, this was NOT supposed to be the American way, the way of equality. If you worked hard or were smart, prudent or successful at a wealth-contributing enterprise, you were expected to enjoy the fruits and benefits, but NOT to belong to a higher class with advantaged privileges.

Now, the upper class have a strong sense of entitlement to better education for their offspring, better neighborhoods, better representation, more influence, ad nauseam, and they have significantly "rigged" the system in some subtle and non-obvious ways to ensure all this. The recent university enrollment admission bribing and false credentials scandal is a prime example, and is only the tip of the proverbial iceberg. Of course, now we have a volunteer military, but even in times of war, no scion of this class ever need worry about getting drafted into the military to face battle, at least at the grunt level. There are a myriad of ways around this that can be arranged.

"Indeed, the middle class is shown to have shrunk in most OECD countries as it has become more difficult for younger generations to make it there: while almost 70% of baby boomers were part of middle-income households in their twenties, only 60% of Millennials are today. Moreover, except for a few countries, middle incomes are barely higher today than they were ten years ago, increasing by just 0.3% per year, a third less than the average income of the richest 10%. More than 1 in 5 middle-income households spend more than they earn and over-indebtedness is higher for them than for both low-income and high-income households. In addition, labour market prospects have become increasingly uncertain: 1 in 6 middle-income workers are in jobs that are at high risk of automation, compared to 1 in 5 low-income and 1 in 10 high-income workers. “Today the middle class looks increasingly like a boat in rocky waters,” says the OECD Secretary-General." - Michael Every of Rabobank

Bill Shaw speaking for the Stansberry Research group says that "the rich keep getting richer, the poor keep getting poorer." He sees this wide gap between the rich and the rest of American citizens as the NUMBER ONE problem in the U.S., "worse than the national debt" and that "it is only going to get worse".

"From 1973 to 2016 net productivity rose 74%, while
hourly pay essentially stagnated...This means although
Americans are working more productively...the fruits of
their labor have accrued to those at the top.
 - Economic Policy Institute

The median family income would be nearly double had it kept up with the wage versus productivity pattern of the past decades. Shaw reports that 78% of the U.S. population now lives paycheck to paycheck. About 0.3% of the families own 20% of the wealth.

"The top 1% in America captured just 4.9 percent of total U.S. income growth in 1945-1973, but since then the country’s richest classes has gobbled up an astonishing 58.7% of all new wealth in the U.S., and 41.8 percent of total income growth during 2009-2015 alone…" - Joel Kotkin, as quoted by Bill Bonner

What is happening is actually very simple. Every time the Federal Reserve Bank opens the spigot and increases the money supply, the overwhelming bulk of that money goes rather directly into the hands of the already rich and powerful, further increasing the imbalance of wealth ownership in the USA.

This gap in wealth is now already obscene, and this is likely to become more apparent and objectionable in the minds of the voters. He (Shaw) thinks that this will become the leading political issue in the next election, and may very well drive America into the hands of the socialists thereby electing a socialist president and regime as a remedy. Needless to say, this is not a happy solution, and supports a revolutionary mindset. The unfortunate reality is that there does NOT seem to be any other apparent solution short of the rich becoming benevolent and focusing on uplifting society instead of increasing their wealth. How likely is that to happen?
    The wealth of the nation is now significantly concentrated in the hands of the few. Because of the lag of wages compared to productivity gains and the enormous debt of the lower classes, 50% of Americans now have a negative net worth..

Millennials are in "worse financial shape than every
generation that came before them."
- Wall Street Journal

The average Millennial now has debt worth $60,000. "It's impossible to break into the middle class. For Millennials the American dream is dead," says Shaw. "The only hope for this generation is a politician who will free them from this financial nightmare...63 million Millennials are looking to the government to solve this problem."

Politically the country has become bitterly partisan and polarized, where the goal is to militate against the other party rather than to do the right thing for the country. The vision for America is increasingly different for the two parties, with heavily populated New England states along with West Coast urban areas and most of Southern California becoming one Democratic bloc more and more out of sync with the "Heartland". The Press is currently allied with the liberal party and heavily over-weighted with liberal reporters, writers and editors. The leaders are not only openly advocating an influx of immigrants from Latin America, but even thinking about grabbing more power by changing the constitution by eliminating the Electoral College and revising the Supreme Court makeup.

There is a strong component of pervasive despair. Suicide has become a major problem even in the military. In 2015 the death rates for Americans rose for the first time since 1993. Future social unrest WILL come from further focus on class, racial and religious polarization exacerbated by armed gangs, underground or ragtag militias, and general social paranoia fostered by certain politicians and the sensation hungry press.

The news media seems to have lost any mooring to truth and objectivity, and have trashed their general reputation beyond repair by becoming partisan. The big city newspapers have lost subscription rates and are now owned by large, rich corporations run by the new moguls representing the likes of Amazon and Comcast.

Educational Factors

The public education system has lost sight of its mandate to produce good civic minded citizens educated with the philosophy of the founders, and now just concentrates on producing good producers and workers. Public education through high school is a tragedy, and now firmly in the grip of the "evil empire" called the National Education Association (NEA). Most of our vaunted colleges and universities, while leaving philosophical education behind, have become propaganda mills for ideas that are dangerous and destructive to our republic, our capitalistic system, our culture and longtime viability.

Let's look at some disturbing facts. The average proficiency rating of GRADUATING high school senior in the major categories consisting of American History, Civics, Math, Geography, Reading, and Writing, are all in the low 20 percentile, with the average at 22%. This is a travesty, a scam, a crime, a disaster for our nation, and there is literally no sign that it is going to improve. The education system has lost its way and failed us, and can do nothing but point fingers and offer excuses. The system at large really has no clue as to how to motivate the students to learn, and the endemic societal problems of homelessness, broken families, alcoholism, drug addiction, absentee parents, latchkey children, etc., and now restrictive laws have left the educators without even much of a toehold for doing the right thing and being effective. The schools have largely turned into disintegrating day care centers. Educations is the cornerstone for a thriving society, and this foundation piece has crumbled before our very eyes.

Higher education and medicine have turned into disgraceful scams. The cost of a university education has skyrocketed, through bad programs but mostly through higher salaries for administrators and professors. They are militating for a minimum salary of $200,000 per year, and, because of federal dollars through student loans and other programs, some are already gaming the system for $500,000 to $20,000,000 per year. Unbelievable? Check it out. The level of student loan debt has hit 1.7 trillion, and two thirds of that will NEVER be paid back. The AVERAGE debt for graduating students from 4 year colleges is around $30,000. Many students are coming out of "colleges" where they receive a license to cut hair or trim nails laden with $100,000 in debt, and some with twice that amount. The now and future taxpayer is on the hook.

     Medical Education, Focus and Service

While medical science has marched on, medical education, focus and service are in the dark ages, and the modern citizen is becoming more disturbed. But what is more immediate and impactful is the dreadful state of medical insurance because of the sweeping changes inaugurated by the ill-advised "Obama care". The whole philosophy and approach to insurance needs to be overhauled, and until then medical care and insurance will be a source of festering unease. Slim to no chance our political polarization will allow that.

Religious Factors

     Renaissance and Reformation

In classical times, the philosophers of the Greco-Roman empire and the Parthian empire sought fulfillment for Man largely "in the search for beauty, for life, for value, for position and reward...Then Christianity had burst upon the ancient world and turned it upside down..."[3] After several hundred years, the Western world had turned dark with religious oppression from the amalgamation of Christendom with the empirical structure, resulting in the Pagan Roman empire being succeeded by the Papal Roman Empire, which held sway until the Reformation..

"The most obvious effect of the Reformation  – which celebrates its 500th anniversary this year – is division. It is estimated that more than 33,000 different Christian denominations now exist throughout the world, and much of this is blamed on the Reformation. While some are making the case that difference does not necessarily constitute division in Protestantism and the global church, the plethora of denominations is a source of concern for Protestants, who are the heirs of Martin Luther's movement that has tended to create new churches rather than reform existing ones." - Caleb Lindgren, "Protestants: The Most 'Catholic' of Christians", Christianity Today, 2017-09-15

More yet smaller denominations and more local control may be a good thing.

Currently, the Notre Dame fire has sparked a significant increase in vandalism and desecration of Christian churches throughout France. If this turns into a greater backlash against Christendom that spreads to other countries, it could be a contributing factor for wider destabilization. Here are some disturbing statistics:

  1. 1 in 9 Christians suffer persecution, mostly in Islamic countries or sub-cultures
  2. In Iraq, since the war, 75% of the Christians are gone
  3. Christians are under a death sentence in Afghanistan
  4. On average, over 340 Christians are killed per month
  5. On average, over 100 Christian churches are attacked and or burned per month
  6. On average, over 200 Christians are detained and imprisoned without trial per month

According to a Gallup poll, already 37% – up from 22% 16 years ago – of Catholics in the USA are considering leaving their identification with this branch of Christendom, primarily because of the rampant sexual abuse and the attendant cover-up attempts. Mostly because it became big news did a previously hushed up press turn its attention upon thousands of accused priests, unknown numbers of victims – naturally mostly women and children – , million dollar settlements, bankrupted churches, and decades if not centuries of tolerance or turning a blind eye.

Meanwhile,

     Islam

Islam has failed to incorporate a healthy dose of humanism into its universe, and has largely turned sour and militant. For far too long it has nursed resentment against Israel and Judeo-Christianity. A large percentage of its governmental structures are dictatorships. Its culture and religion do NOT foster productivity, scientific and technological development, and true wealth production in its population in the same way that protestant Christianity does, and consequently its economies lag in terms of infrastructure, manufacturing, and civil amenities such as water and electrical power delivery, sewage disposal, health care and education. Its families do not have the ready access to products that foster better hygiene, and an unseemly percentage of its population have chronic dysentery. Islam does not foster healthy capitalistic competition.

In this general environment young men, frustrated by the lack of career and job—and thereby sexual—opportunities, fester with resentment. The biggest, easiest, safest target for aggression, generally fostered by their clergy and or leadership, is Judeo-Christianity. Such direction of unrest is actually being used as a safety valve in several countries. Attacks on Christian structures are increasing significantly if not spiking. In reference to the above Christian persecution. Most of this is coming from Islam.

What SOME of its nations have is enormous petroleum income, but this is concentrated in the hands of the few, the royalty or powerful, and is not used wisely, many times being devoted to sponsoring terrorism. These nations largely BUY  both the technical services and products that they need; they do not produce them. The health and longevity of its populations do not compare well with those of industrialized nations. More nourishment for its resentment problem.

USA Financial Factors

We have recently had major industrial and banking crises–caused by a form of risk-taking which is actually subtle, irresponsible speculation or gambling–for which the federal government, the taxpayer, has had to intervene and pay the price. How would you like to gamble, and then if you win look good and enjoy your winnings; and if you lose get bailed out by the taxpayer? Such a deal!

What should be readily evident is that the money/currency supply should keep up with population increases, and the government should create this increase for its own budget in lieu of comparable tax collection. However, America has over-inflated its monetary supply, debased its currency, wasted its financial health on foreign wars and huge social programs and become deeply indebted to other foreign nations.

"But like the masses themselves, the elite–the feds, their cronies, Wall Street, special interests, lobbyists, the Pentagon, the social welfare complex, the Deep State, and (generally) the rich–have been corrupted by fake money. They’ve grown accustomed to spending money neither they nor anyone else ever earned. And it’s a hard habit to break.
    " Fake money came from the Fed – $3.6 trillion of it between 2009 and 2019. Under the guise of “quantitative easing,” the Fed bought financial assets, mostly Treasuries. Yields sank. Stocks climbed. The ultra-rich got richer." - Bill Bonner

"The American economy has benefitted from huge gains in productivity, but those gains have gone to the wealthy and the middle and poor class have not shared in this largess. Real wages have been decoupled from productivity, and adjusted for inflation and other factors have remained stagnant. BTW, the official figures for the rate of inflation have also been decoupled from the real rate, and are now artificial.
     "The debt load for the working poor has nearly quadrupled in the past 20 years as a percentage of their income. And this debt can never, ever be repaid." - Porter Stansberry

What led to the "Mortgage Crisis" of a few decades ago, was essentially unsecured debt with exorbitant and unsound loans made on houses more expensive than many homeowners could service. These mortgages got repackaged in a variety of "derivatives" and resold to a wide variety of institutions. Now, there is a huge unsecured credit card and automobile debt load. The credit card debt can't be collected and even if the vehicles are reclaimed, their value will be significantly less that the amount owed.

What this means is that there WILL be some kind of debt Jubilee! Impossible, you say? Not really. It is a time honored solution, and several countries have done this in modern times in one form or another. Pope Boniface VIII proclaimed the first Christian Jubilee in 1300. Unprecedented in the USA, you say? Some form of this was instituted in the 1840s, 1930s and 1960s.

The job with the largest employment is truck driving, and this is being threatened by the technology of AI vehicle control. The full implementation of the 5G (5th Generation communication technology) will no doubt mostly eliminate much of human driving in truck and automobile transportation, and replace it in the trucking industry with mechanical and electronic function monitor and repair personnel who will be able to sleep, educate or amuse themselves until they are needed.

These are only SOME of the major problems. Probably the worst development of them all is that America has shifted over from essentially a cash economy to a credit economy, and the amount of credit and debt is obscenely, dangerously high, and at a level of 38 TRILLION dollars. This is an amount greater than the sum total of all the residential real estate, and makes the whole enterprise extremely unstable. Within the next five years there is also a TRILLION dollars of junk bonds from weak, shaky corporations coming due that will have to be renegotiated and discounted, or produce default and bankruptcy.

GDP is increasing at 2.5% per year. Federal debt is increasing twice as fast. No way is that going to have a happy ending. - Bill Bonner

Now 25% of Federal government spending, Social Security outlay also is rising faster than GDP, and the gap between public worker pension fund assets and liabilities has widened,  and the deficit over the last 10 years has been running at about one TRILLION dollars. Social Security reserves are on a path to hit zero in 15 years. Probably the very worst is the hardly curtailed spending of the politicians. There seems to be no moorage to common sense, Spend, spend,  spend! "No way is that going to have a happy ending."

Over the last 10 years, for every stock bought – in net terms – by the public, foreigners, pension funds, investment funds, or other institutional buyers (the normal buyers of stocks, in other words), the corporations themselves bought nearly 50 of them. - Bill Bonner

This is REALLY unhealthy, in that it is a form of corporate incest, further concentrating the wealth and power of the few, and reducing the stake of the average citizen in the true value of American production. The true wealth of America lies in its companies that produce and distribute the products and services that are necessary for living in an industrial society versus a hunter-gatherer one.

Corporate debt has more than doubled since the last recession, and it is now more than 9 trillion dollars. Apparently, the ratio of nonfinancial corporate debt to U.S. GDP is now at nearly 50 percent. Over the last 11 years, total outstanding corporate debt is up 86% while the U.S. economy grew just 18%. In the last 30 years firms in the USA unable or making enough money to barely be able to pay interest on their debt has gone from 2% to 16%. Apparently, 12% of the world’s companies are in the same state of earnings dearth. With any serious jolt to the economy, these teetering companies fall over like dominoes!

America’s economy is not really capitalist. It is a form of late, degenerate state-controlled, crony-manipulated, empire-addled, pseudo-capitalist claptrap...
     A quarter of the economy is directly run by the feds. Another quarter – including medical care and education – is guided and approved by them. And the remainder is chock-a-block with rules and regulations… All of them intended to upgrade, or at least to genetically modify, the fruits of naked capitalism. - Bill Bonner

When it is all said and done, the total USA governmental—federal and state—unfunded debt liability for legally promised social programs add up to a staggering 165 trillion dollars. Completely beyond the bounds of realistically ever being honored. Increasing taxes upon future earners may temporarily fund a small portion of this, but the bulk will simply be subject to default. Of course, a revolution will wipe all of this out, and be a kind of starting over, but it will be ugly AND bloody.

U.S. Treasury Manipulation in commodities and futures markets

“Presumably, the U.S. Treasury is secretly trading in any number of markets and refuses to say which markets they are.... I think we have established this now to the satisfaction of any reasonable person.... Especially since the CME Group, which operates the major futures exchanges in the United States, has just renewed what it calls its central bank incentive program, which gives enormous volume trading discounts to governments and central banks for surreptitiously trading all the futures markets. . . . “At some point, manipulations do fail . . . . Manipulations only work because of deception.” - Chris Powell, Treasurer and Secretary of the Gold Anti-Trust Action Committee (GATA)

Such manipulation is foolish in the extreme and has to be viewed as an act of desperation. It opens one more door to the corruption chamber of horrors, and it will leave somebody holding the bag, the American taxpayer again, not to mention all those speculators getting caught wrong-footed.

Top of column 2

Top of column 2

Future financial distress WILL come from: poverty, unemployment, entitlement trust fund bankruptcy, trade wars, public debt defaults, collapsing financial markets, the growing disparity of wealth, and severe price increases from the hyperinflation of the money supply.

The Second Coming
Turning and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.
- William Butler Yeats

USA Substance Abuse Factors

Substance abuse problems have become endemic, and it is well known that there is a prominent link or correlation between substance abuse and both crime and violation of civil ordinance. This continues to be a HUGE drag upon the nation's health and welfare. Not to mention the personal tragedy and suffering.

China and other nations have taken "draconian" measures to subdue this problem with marked success. Not only are we facing an opioid crisis but we have prosecuted a losing war against the illicit narcotics trade, have endured serious ongoing alcoholism, and now face a new dimension of legalized marijuana use. Law and punishment may not be the best approach or antidote, but at least law makes a statement, sends a constant message that proper society does NOT approve. Violent crime is up sharply in the four states since the legalization of "pot". Actually, the death rates from drugs, alcohol and suicide IN America are at their highest levels EVER!

Another factor is the historical 60 year cycle of warfare that has somehow been imposed on the United States. We are just entering this cycle, and the possibilities of civil war or war with other nations/cultures have long turned into probabilities. The big liberal states of California, New York and Washington are in the grasp of political machines that are openly contemptuous of national borders, values and goals.

If all this above is not a formula for revolution I don't know what is! If or when the United States melts down in revolution, don't you think that several other nations will try to contribute to the trouble and exacerbate the situation and maximize the damage?

Multiculturalism

Unless the chips are really down and we are threatened by an external agency where we can see that we can mutually benefit by cooperation, in most countries and cultures religious and cultural factors overwhelm the commonality that we share as homo sapiens. What could be clearer than that? Regardless of the validity and merits of any one culture and belief system, life is hard enough without the aggravation of dealing with people with different values, alien ways, or incompatible behaviors.

A recent infusion of people with a radically different religion and culture have not only reduced the charm of Sweden, France, England, parts of the USA, etc., but have increased the usual turmoil, friction, and crime, and seemingly threaten the very fabric of these country's societies.

Even in the great melting pot of the USA, multiculturalism can hardly be defended. Chinese immigrants have NEVER assimilated, it is hard to imagine the new influx of Islamics to do so, and there are troublesome enclaves of various races and cultures, including the Hispanic. Even with a CONCERTED effort since the Civil War, assimilation of Blacks is still somewhat problematic.

Even if they don't take intellectual responsibility for their religion, most people take it seriously when it comes to their "salvation". A different culture is most often correlated with a different religion, and that exacerbates the incompatibility and retards assimilation.

Regardless of the merits of multiculturalism, the price seems to be too high.

Geopolitical Factors

The implications of all of the above reach far beyond the American public and into the global community. What could the world possibly look like now without a strong and healthy America? The vision that comes to mind is frightening.

You have no doubt heard of the ugly American, and there is a lot of truth buried in the epithet. While being the greatest nation on earth – essentially a powerful empire in many respects – , the USA has crossed over the line several times and meddled with, declared war on, invaded, and taken territory from other "sovereign" nations.

On the other hand, the U.S. government
 has acted as the police force much of the time, it has stood as the defense against oppressive regimes angling to dominate the world, but it has tried politically and economically as well as militarily to impose its will unnecessarily and unproductively. Thus, America is simultaneously feared, loved, despised and admired around the world.

Meanwhile, Japan and Russia, erstwhile power players on the international stage, have populations and economies that have all but stagnated, especially Japan. Russia is being drained by trying to maintain an imposing military capability, while Japan has had the advantage of NOT doing this. Nevertheless, Japan has suffered literally zero population and economic growth.

     Geopolitical Competition

The recent collapse in world trade volume is the worst since the financial crisis and is as dangerous as during the dot-com bobble of the early 2000s,  according to The Telegraph. We are well into a trade war, what with all the tariffs that are being bandied about between the USA and other nations, particularly China But this may only be temporary, because negotiations between the USA and China may yet stagger to some kind of finish line. However, free enterprise and free trade are antithetical to Chinese communism power structure, yet a huge plum for China and its economy is Hong Kong with its powerful free trade economy. IF these negotiations are successful, world trade will blossom again in a big way.

Russian Hegemony in Iran

Iran's current religious leadership council has made such a spectacular failure of decent government and good management that Iran is now firmly on the verge of a widespread, violent and bloody revolution. The ONLY way this can be avoided and these evil men can cling to their power and position is to go to bed with the Russians, who see this as a time-tested way to expand their otherwise shrinking empire. Unless some huge and unforeseen development comes upon the stage, this WILL happen just the way it happened in Syria and other places, but to a markedly greater degree. As of today, the dominant religion in Russia is Islam, and Russia WILL move in with significant military resources and try to control the region and its resources. This will exact a heavy price from the Iranians, and and impose turmoil upon the rest of the world.

Iran at War with Israel

One of the most immanent and serious developments is the current all but declared war between Iran and Israel. The leadership of Iran has such a deep seated religious hatred of Israel that there can NEVER be peace until either that leadership is replaced or one of the nations is destroyed. The leadership of Iran, given their failure to improve the lives of its people, absolutely now needs Israel as an enemy to focus the attention of its population away from Iran's condition. To really resolve this underlying state of affairs, it would be necessary for the greater population of Iran to renounce Islam, something not about to happen. The validity of their whole belief system or religion now hinges upon supremacy over Israel and other religions of the world, including Western Christianity.

     Russian and Chinese Incursion into the Western Hemisphere

One of Poland's top former military commander's is highly concerned about Russian incursion and hegemony in Europe, and is even envisioning a time when western allies deploy nuclear weapons in a pre-emptive strike. Of course, that represents one extreme end of the range of thinking.

What cannot be denied is that Russia has made a successful incursion with its involvement and domination of Cuba, and now both it and China are meddling in Venezuela.

Besides stealing Americas Technology and trade secrets, the Chinese are paying full tuition for a significant number of students to learn our AI research and approach at our leading universities..

Here is one take on China from an opinionator:

"China has risen explosively, from being clearly a “Third World” country forty years ago to become a very serious and rapidly advancing competitor to America. Anyone who has seen today’s China (I recently spent  two weeks there, traveling muchly) will have been  astonished by the ubiquitous construction, the quality of planning, the roads and airports and high-speed rail, the sense of confidence and modernity. Compare this with America’s rotting and dangerous cities, swarms of homeless people, deteriorating education, antique rail, de-industrialized midlands, loony government, and the military sucking blood from the economy like some vast leech, and America will seem yesterday’s country. The phrase “national suicide” comes to mind." - Fred Reed

Reed goes on to document a long list of China's accomplishments in research, innovation, construction, planning, technology, mass transit, communication, etc. His conclusions is that Asia is where it's at: See: https://fredoneverything.org/yesterdays-country-not-to-worry-they-cant-innovate/

But this is not necessarily true, and China has huge systemic problems.

Anthropogenic Global Warming

One of the most significant factors that has already had, and can further have, a deleterious affect upon the stability and well-being of  American society is the AGW scare scam that is being perpetrated upon the current thinking. Michael Mann's famous "hockey stick" chart has been very influential, but is a false construct that does NOT really fit the data and information that we have. This issue has the most fertile ground for using the most effective influence on public policy—almost global fear—and it is further polarizing people and ripping apart unity and good will amongst the civilized populations of the world. We now have academic institutions and private organizations that are wrongly invested in promoting this anti-AGW agenda. There is a lot of political influence and money involved, and the motivations are hardly less than thoroughly impure. Worst of all, the regulatory bureaucrats, always  looking to extend their realm, have sunk their teeth into this fertile ground for irrational concern!

Mark Levin interviews Dr. Patrick Michael in a short, hard-hitting exposé of the Global Warming scam:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fA5sGtj7QKQ

John Stossel looks at Global Warming:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m3hHi4sylxE

Anthony Watts talks about urbanization of the last century and the "Heat sink" effect upon the temperature recording stations, and the implications for the AGW data:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UmIJCGQzCiU

Not only is this issue, sometimes called "climate change", significantly emotionally polarizing people, but it has enormous potential to be incredibly counterproductive and damaging, and it IS influencing officials and governments to foster and institute massive programs that are misguided, repressive and wasteful of resources. It has given many alarmists a new platform to induce religious fervor in ignorant but otherwise well meaning people to become involved and militate for destructive policies, because the claim is that we are all doomed within 20 years if we don't repent and radically change our ways, life styles, and industrial practices immediately.

The whole rationale of climate change is predicated upon a denial that the climate around the earth is ALWAYS changing, and the whole edifice of AGW is built in ignorance of the recent changes in the solar system, and the overwhelming role of electricity in our cosmos and the dominant effect of the sun—and the current that feeds the solar system—for the earth's climate and weather. And it is all conflated with "pollution" which we are all against, but really is a separate matter entirely. Even the anti AGW faction is confused about the miniscule role of CO2 in contributing to a largely non-existent "greenhouse effect", and don't realize that not only is more CO2 actually beneficial to plant growth and food crop production, but mother nature keeps locking up increases through forest and grassland growth.

However, given the current norm, warmer temperatures are easier and less expensive to protect against than colder temperatures, and the world is getting a break for that. Given the increasingly ideal growing conditions for food crops due to warmer climes and elevated CO2 levels, large scale starvation has been almost eliminated. WHEN the globe turns cold again, a development expected within the next ten years or so, we will be caught unaware and unprepared on a global scale. IF we enter a new mini-ice age for some reason, crops will have to be changed and there will be massive disruption, starvation and desperation.

The disturbing thing is that the statistics of the last year are already indicating that we may have reversed direction and are heading into a cooling period. If so, this will catch the world flat-footed with dire destabilizing results. Given the true facts and MY understanding of what causes the cycles that effect global climate and weather, 10 years from now, if not sooner, everyone will be praying for global warming!

The Debasement of Politics

Even at the beginning of our nation politics was a contact sport, but at least back then there was a prominent common cause and a common dream, the establishment of a nation free from the old world dominance and interference.

The U.S. has established essentially the two party system, yet this system tends to develop the mentality of us against them. The pertinent line that should never get crossed is that of deciding in favor for the power or win of the party at the expense of the good for the nation or the common cause. The efficacy of this line cannot be established by law but only by the idealism and integrity of the individual politicians. The moral fiber of our time has fallen so low that it is impossible to find a politician that has not crossed this line, and most politicians can no longer recognize the line, and operate as if what is good for their party is good for the nation. It would seem that the lack of term limits has exacerbated this syndrome.

Other Factors

The AP (Associated Press) puts out a stylebook every year that includes universal guidelines for stylistic matters like punctuation, capitalization, and even word choice. In a recent version, it encouraged writers to not use words such as “pro-life,” “migrant,” “refugee,” “Islamist,” and “terrorist.”...
     Words enable thought. So if you corrupt words, you can alter and corrupt people’s thoughts. Words are the parents of thought. And thought is the father to action. There’s a reason the Bible speaks of “the word” with such respect.
     If you don’t have a word for something, it makes it hard to think about it. And it’s worse if you have the wrong word. They’re trying to corrupt the language to limit what people think and do. - Doug Casey

The underlying values polarization, which becomes obvious with the screaming political polarization, threatens not only the long-term vitality and stability of America, but now the short term viability. The current American population has become stupid, stupid being defined by Doug Casey as: "the inability to predict not just the immediate and direct consequences of actions, but the indirect and delayed consequences of your actions.”

"The free market, individualism, personal liberty, personal responsibility, hard work, rationality, free speech – the values of western civilization – are being washed away, everywhere. But it’s hard to defend them, because the argument for them is intellectual, economic, and historical. While the mob, the capita censi, the “head count” as the Romans called them, is swayed by emotions. They feel, they don’t think...
     When somebody says, for instance, “Why can’t we have free school for everybody? The university buildings are already built. The professors are already there. So why can’t everybody just go to class, and learn about gender studies?” The same arguments are made for food, shelter, clothing, entertainment, communication – everything in fact.
     To counter that, you have to come up with specific reasons for why not. You end up sounding like a Negative Nelly because you’re telling people they can’t have something...
     I guess I’ve given too much credit to the goodwill and the common sense of the average American...
     It’s exactly the type of thing the Founders tried to guard against by restricting the vote to property owners over 21, going through the Electoral College. Now, welfare recipients who are only 18 can vote, and the Electoral College is toothless. Some want to totally abolish the College, and have even 16-year-olds and illegal aliens voting.
     Nobody, except for a few libertarians and conservatives, is countering the ideas..." - Doug Casey

Casey goes on to say that he thinks the collapse is imminent and he doesn't see any way out!

Here is what another analyst says:

"Whatever the reason, the desperation of the left only grows, and you can see it in their increasingly brazen statements and actions. Anti-Semitism, open socialism and overwhelming political corruption are no longer secret shames on the left. They are celebrated. This desperation will reach a tipping point, and bloodshed is almost inevitable."

Note that global economic growth is slowing, and that puts a negative backdrop to everything. The German economy, the erstwhile champion of the European community of nations, is currently in the toilet. Deutsche Bank looks like it is in serious trouble, and it with most of the other banks are bloated with derivatives. It looks like all the dominoes are again lined up to fall. A default by Deutsche Bank would probably start a cascade down.

Another significant factor is the economic and cultural collapse of America's major cities. Chicago, Detroit, Baltimore, Los Angeles, San Francisco, New York City, Houston, Miami, Denver, Seattle and Portland because of disastrous policies are all now magnets for homelessness, drug addiction, disease, filth, and starvation. The populations are now so corrupt and irresponsible that they can only elect corrupt, pandering civic leaders and are slated to spiral down to devastation, to becoming the new Calcuttas.

Another threatening factor for the stability of America is symptomatic of the kind of instabilities that a high-tech, big corporate economy can introduce. The Boeing 737 Max-8 aircraft has experienced two recent tragic crashes, and this model has been taken almost totally offline by the world's airline industry. Boeing has 5000 orders for these aircraft—the next 3-1/2 years of production—and if these orders get decimated by cancellation, that alone could send the USA economy into recession.

Other threatening factors could be the joker in the deck of "mother nature". The globe is probably at the end of a warming period, which, along with the increase in CO2, has been great for forestation, crops and food production. If we go into a mini ice age, that will be devastating for the burgeoning population of the world. Always another threat is drought in key areas, and there is the possibility of a serious epidemic of the latest or new largely intractable diseases. We now know that this "mother" will continue to throw these at us, and we have the possibility of the return of past horrors like measles, smallpox, tuberculosis, etc.

Japan is helplessly watching itself literally die because of a shrinking and aging population that is not getting replaced. Future political distress for America WILL come from de facto altered borders, secessionism, tax revolts, institutional collapses, and any constitutional changes. Future military angst WILL come from empirically minded foreign countries, those threatening to acquire weapons of mass destruction, or those fostering terrorism because of a religio-political agenda.

The bottom line:

"The money is fake. The companies are fake, too. GDP is fake. Inflation is fake. Interest rates are fake. And the president gets up and says fake things about a fake economy to the fake news media.” - Bill Bonner

Vanishing of the Big Dream

I would say that the world of today is jaded, and that the dreams and movements of the past have largely played out and shown themselves as being incapable of really delivering the dream.

See: " The American Dream is lost" by Ray Dalio

"It's not redistributing opportunity...there's a growing wealth gap and a growing income gap...If I was president of the United States what I would do is recognize that this is a national emergency...Capitalism needs to be reformed...it doesn't need to be abandoned, it needs to be reformed in order to work better. American capitalism isn't sustainable."

The founding of America was a really big dream, one that in the
minds of many went all the way to being the kingdom of heaven!

Thanks to widespread news and opinion on TV and dissemination via the internet, many people are being exposed to the "dreams" of other nations or cultures, and they are not impressed with what they see. Not only not impressed, but alarmed.

There seems to be no credible big dream out there to pull people globally together anymore, and maybe not one to be effective within individual cultures. The American dream has largely played out. The largest dream in the Western world would now seem to be: “Make America great again!” The Russian government dreams of making the Soviet Union great again. The largest dream in the Far-Eastern world would seem to be: “Make China great again!”, while other far-eastern nations are feeling the heavy presence of China's military. The largest dream in the Middle-Eastern world would seem to be: “Islam is destined to dominate and control the world, its people and its thinking for the glory of Allah!”, they have a heavy presence in Africa, and they have established enclaves of Sharia Law in many European countries as well as Australia and the U.S. Need I mention that Zionism hasn't gone away? Is there ANYBODY except ostensible nut cases that REALLY BELIEVES in something more magnificent than these religious or quasi-religious visions?

And so it goes. Christendom, usually so eager to proselytize, would seem to have gone largely stagnant, shrinking in the Western world. It has lost its inspiration to make THE difference, while doing not much else than holding on and waiting for the “Lord” to come, and only enlarging its numbers primarily by adding multitudes of Third World adherents primarily in the southern hemisphere.

The Thunderbolts Group

Meanwhile, the Thunderbolts/Kronia group has one of the largest dreams around, and that is to re-educate and revolutionize the world in a significant way to the Saturnian Reconstruction understanding and the Electric Universe paradigm, nothing short of changing the overall scientific and academic worldview. But this dream is not in the same ballpark as delivering us from the human condition, eliminating evil, and bringing mankind back to an Edenic state or beyond.

To quote one of my favorite “authorities” in the world, “The message that comes to us from the experience of the physical universe is one of relentless indifference!” Yet, that is our focus, as if understanding physical science better will be our salvation. Meanwhile the religious, academic, cultural, political,  and psychological world gets creepier and crazier, more dis-unified, meaningless and dangerous.

It IS ONLY the big picture that has real meaning, that makes THE difference. But we are so jaded, so full of demeaning sentiment towards ourselves, that we BELIEVE beyond all other things that either there is no big picture that has real meaning, or that we are incapable of grasping it within reasonable effort. We are like sinking ships full of lazy thinking, apathy, and time-honored but rotten religious and scientific myth which obscures our vision. Not to mention all the personal psychological, emotional and physical wounds we have incurred and all the stigma and scarring we carry around like a carapace.

The new high priests in American culture are the scientists. Given that "scientism" has marginalized if not replaced the traditional religions in much of the world, if and when a significant percentage of the American public wakes up and realizes how corrupt science and academia really are, will this not undergird and contribute to any socio-political revolution? How could it not?

Catastrophic Human Brutalization

The psychological and spiritual aspect of Man was absolutely brutalized and trashed by the ancient catastrophes and all the perverse, superstitious and intellectually irresponsible myth that was developed then and since by still very intelligent and creative people. Yet the vast majority of today have accepted much of this heritage as the word of God! Not so good, is it?

The Saturnian Reconstruction along with the explosion of communication technology has given us a major handle on what really happened in the ancient times, a handle that allows us to sweep away much of the major confusion in our cultures. Looking at it gives the biggest backdrop we have into our religious and psychological heritage and thinking, and for asking the big questions and putting things into a better, more valid big-picture context. There was just no way I could sort out things without this knowledge. This is the biggest development for returning to intellectual integrity that the human race has had in 1300 years, yet almost everyone wants to deny or ignore it, even the aforementioned Thunderbolts Group focuses on the Electric Universe part of its mission instead of the more important Saturnian Reconstruction.

Does Man have to put in another thousand years before we wake up and deal with the real issues?

More Questions

What nation would you like to take the place of the USA in leading / dominating / policing the world? China? Russia? Iran? Like any agency that is tasked with responding to an emergency, the U.S. military has stayed somewhat sharp for this through the recent string of foreign wars. For the immediate future the U.S. military will remain the most powerful in the world, but some analysts see this soon coming to an end. What role will it play in any such developments as are likely to happen? Will a threat come along with such different strategy, tactics, and weaponry that it will catch the military flat-footed? Would it ever willingly become a police agency to deal with the citizenry, or use its force in suppressing dissent?

If the great experiment of a multicultural democratic republic fails, what will take its place? Will that fracture any semblance of global stability? Will this mean that a major light in the world will go out, and the world will descend into greater darkness for, say, another thousand years? What will then happen to Christianity with its incompatible Northern and Southern hemispheric versions, and Islam with its Sunni and Shia versions? Will this undermine or thwart any progress toward world enlightenment and the resolution of the human condition? Is there a God that would intervene, or continue to be uninvolved, which has apparently been the case for the last 1300 years?

If we get too fixated upon worrying about all this, we can remind ourselves that a direct hit by either a major class X CME or a nearby gamma ray burst would make all of this moot, and could do even more damage, even sterilize the surface of the earth.

The "Bright" Side

ON THE OTHER HAND, the full implementation of 5G technology WILL have a revolutionary, and MAY have a salutary, effect upon human enterprise in general, BECAUSE it will be a jump in magnitude of capability for distant communication. It will enable any two people on earth – with virtually no "dead spots" – to seamlessly communicate with TV-like video capability over just a pocket CELL PHONE with computer-network-like capability. It will allow remote control of crucial activity to the point of medical examination and even surgery, not to mention all other areas that require special expertise. It will have a transformational affect upon education and information access, and may even overwhelm the NSA's attempt to monitor virtually EVERY telephonic or electronic communication.

Like in any new level of "empowerment" there is the potential for good or evil, an upside and a downside. Improvement in communicational capability has been of crucial benefit to invigorating civilization in the past. Why should this one be any different? Unless, of course, it proves to have some fundamental deleterious affect like further concentrating wealth,  power and control into the hands of the few, OR, like frying our brains! Who knows?

Another significant positive developments: in the Western world is that rates of violent crime have plummeted. In the previous decade, the rate of absolute poverty fell almost as much as 50%. "The poor in the world are getting richer at a rate that absolutely is unparalleled in all of human history,..." says Jordan Peterson, "The child mortality rate in Africa is now the same as it was in Europe in 1952... This is a miracle!"

Footnotes

[1]  America HAS undergone a violent and very bloody revolution in what is called the "Civil War", which should be called the "War of Secession". This debacle changed the tenor of the nation more than most people realize today. Abraham Lincoln, one of America's top two revered, sacred, premier heroes, may have done more long term damage – through federalization – than any other president. The Lincoln administration and the "successful" prosecution of this war laid the foundation for a much more powerful and intrusive federal government.

[2]  So much so that an op-ed writer, Luke O’Neil, for the prominent Boston Globe in an editorial openly urged waiters to contaminate the food of Trump administration officials when presented the opportunity.

[3]  Jack D. Zwemer, "Birth and Death of the Renaissance"

[4]  Currently the USA is facing an unhealthy influx of would-be immigrants that are trying to abandon their Central American countries. This wave is NOT going to bring people in line with our language, culture and values, but overwhelmingly low wage workers at best, and criminals or quasi victims and welfare recipients at worst.

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