Study: Get Out Of The USA By 2020

Wednesday, August 8, 2012 16:13

Advocates of “cliodynamics” say that they can use scientific methods to illuminate the past. But historians are not so sure, Nature News reports.

To Peter Turchin, who studies population dynamics at the University of Connecticut in Storrs, the appearance of three peaks of political instability at roughly 50-year intervals starting with the U.S. Civil War is not a coincidence. For the past 15 years, Turchin has been taking the mathematical techniques that once allowed him to track predator-prey cycles in forest ecosystems, and applying them to human history.

He has analyzed historical records on economic activity, demographic trends and outbursts of violence in the United States, and has come to the conclusion that a new wave of internal strife is already on its way. The peak should occur in about 2020, he says, and will probably be at least as high as the one in around 1970. “I hope it won’t be as bad as 1870,” he adds.

Cliodynamics has another ally in Jack Goldstone, director of the Center for Global Policy at George Mason University and a member of the Political Instability Task Force, which is funded by the US Central Intelligence Agency to forecast events outside the United States. Goldstone has searched for cliodynamic patterns in past revolutions, and predicts that Egypt will face a few more years of struggle between radicals and moderates and 5–10 years of institution-building before it can regain stability. “It is possible but rare for revolutions to resolve rapidly,” he says. “Average time to build a new state is around a dozen years, and many take longer.”

If Turchin’s prediction of unrest in the United States around 2020 is correct, the next few years should see an increase in tightly knit US groups whose rituals have a threatening quality but promise great rewards.

Turchin can’t say who those groups might be, what cause they will be fighting for or what form the violence will take. Previous bouts of turbulence were not dominated by any one issue, he says. But he already sees the warning signs of social strife, including a surplus of graduates and increasing inequality. “Inequality is almost always a bad thing for societies,” he says.

Read more here: Human cycles: history as science | KurzweilAI

Study: Get Out Of The USA By 2020 | Alternative