Not hard to see the potential outcome should political and economic systems continue as they are...
SOCIETY could collapse at some point in the 2020s as political turmoil sweeps the Western world.
That’s the grim prediction from a historian who uses mathematics to forecast the path of future history before it happens.
Peter Turchin, a professor at the University of Connecticut’s department of ecology and evolutionary biology, said the next decade would be marked by political turmoil and social unrest.
The academic is the world’s leading advocate of a discipline called cliodynamics, which believes historical events such as the growth and collapse of empires or religions follow clearly definable patterns.
Unfortunately for us, he believes America is facing a grim future which could lead to its downfall.
If the US collapses, it seems likely that Europe and the West will suffer a similar fate.
In an article written late last year and published today on Phys. Org, he wrote: “We should expect many years of political turmoil, peaking in the 2020s.”
“But this is a science-based forecast, not a ‘prophecy’. It’s based on solid social science.”
He threw cold water on the hysterical people who appear to think Trump is one of the four horsemen of the apocalypse and said his victory “changes nothing in this equation”.
“Our society, like all previous complex societies, is on a rollercoaster,” he added.
“Impersonal social forces bring us to the top; then comes the inevitable plunge.”
He said the turmoil would be driven by a process of “elite overproduction” in which the number of rich, elite people in society grows larger and they become ever more distant from poorer folks.
“Elite overproduction generally leads to more intra-elite competition that gradually undermines the spirit of co-operation, which is followed by ideological polarisation and fragmentation of the political class,” he wrote.
“This happens because the more contenders there are, the more of them end up on the losing side. A large class of disgruntled elite-wannabes, often well-educated and highly capable, has been denied access to elite positions.”
The academic also suggested “the stagnation and decline of living standards and declining fiscal health of the state, resulting from falling state revenues and rising expenses” would bring about a potentially terminal slump.
However, Turchin said that his theories could actually help us escape this grim fate by observing trends and stopping them before they cause problems for society.
“The descent is not inevitable,” he continued.
“Ours is the first society that can perceive how those forces operate, even if dimly.
“This means that we can avoid the worst — perhaps by switching to a less harrowing track, perhaps by redesigning the rollercoaster altogether.”
It is if the current political and economic landscape continues...2017 is going to be a very interesting year.“The descent is not inevitable,” he continued.