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Updated: 2015-09-16T10:22:12.785-07:00

 



An Update to Rerurm Novarum: The Global Economy Section (A Doomsday Scenario)

2009-05-15T14:47:40.382-07:00

It has been two years now since I first wrote the rough draft for Rerum Novarum: Of New Things, and a New World. Since then, the trends outlined have generally continued to proceed as predicted (which will be outlined in greater detail in another post): The US has a new President whose policies differ radically from those of George W. Bush, the global economy has entered a major recession, and the international order of the post-9/11, post-Cold War period is generally acknowledged to be failing.It has been my opinion that beyond predicting the failure of the foundational trends of the world order, it is impossible to determine with any certainty what path the world may take after the failure of these trends—what the new order which would emerge would look like. This is a chaotic period, and chaos is inherently unpredictable. Nevertheless, I thought that this would be an appropriate time to outline my thoughts on where the global economy is going between 2009 and 2011.I caution the reader that I am nothing approaching an economist: my prediction that the global economy would enter a recession was based on a theory derived exclusively from studying patterns in how history unfolds; it says that in major events, major trends end in close proximity to one another. In order for the world order to change, it was necessary for the economy to enter a recession—and so it did, apparently.That said, let us get to my speculative prediction—for it is just that, an opinion on the future, for I have no real data to back it up.Shockwaves Across the Globe: A Global Depression At the outset, it is important to understand that I think of this crisis in terms of shockwaves—it seems logical to me that an economic recession in the US will ripple to other economies, weakening their foundations and leaving them vulnerable to whatever fundamental problems lurk within their economy; when the economies of these countries are damaged, they will ripple to the US, which will cause damage to the US economy again. Each country sends out a shockwave, which when they detonate, can weaken the economies of other countries to the point where they will also send out shockwaves. It is only when the shockwaves are either too weak to greatly affect the economies of a country, or the economy has shrunk so low that there is not much left to weaken, that the crisis will finally end.Now, many people have come to believe that the US will move out of recession by the end of 2009—and they might even be correct, if they are only looking at causes and effects within the US. The problem is, this recession is global in nature and the damage it does to other countries will ripple back to the United States. As said before, I see the recession in each country sending out a shockwave, which detonates the foundations of other countries.Specifically, this is how I see how this crisis has and will progress, as marked by the following Stages:Stage I was the detonation of the US economy in 2007/2008, with the financial and housing bubbles bursting, sending out a shockwave to the rest of the world. This shockwave hit the rest of the world, and detonated, either destroying or loosening the foundations of many economies, and resulting in Stage II. Stage II occurred in the summer and fall of 2008, when those countries who were weakened by the US shockwave, fell victim to fundamental problems in the economies of themselves and their neighbors, emitting their own shockwaves. Stage III is presently coming to a close, and occurred in the last quarter of 2008 and the spring of 2009, when these shockwaves hit the US, which produced its own shockwave again, which rebounded and hit these countries as well, weakening the economies of everyone further. In this stage, as a result of these effects, the economies of Europe, Japan, the majority of Latin America, and the US all officially entered a major recession.It is my belief that the entry into recession by these powerful economies will produce a quite large shockwave, which will hit the last large economic growth engine in the world: [...]



Predictionary

2007-08-09T14:09:55.580-07:00

By, Ryan TeppermanOver the course of the next few years the world will enter a new era. No longer shall it be the post-cold war, post-9/11, post-anything era, but one altogether its own. It is during 2007 and 2008 that this new era will fully be born, and will truly start as a separate entity.Why will this happen? Partly because of the actions of individuals, partly because of the need people seem to have for change, partly for population and statistical reasons, and partly from sheer coincidence/chance. All of these shall play a role, some great, some small. Mostly, however, this new historical era will come about as the result of the ending of the trends which have dominated the post-9/11 world; some of them dating all the way back to the end of the Cold War. These trends will mostly end in 2007 and 2008, with the new trends beginning to emerge and become dominant at the end of 2008.And what reason do I have to believe this? I would point the reader to the nexus of historical events presently occurring. For whatever reason, throughout history events seem to come together in certain time frames, occurring in close proximity (often both geographically and spatially), building and growing off each other, redoubling their effect. History is littered with examples of this, of times when political, social, and economic changes all occurred close together and resulted in changes so massive, they forced the sections of the world they touched into a new era. For example, look at the French Revolution. A poor harvest, defeats overseas, a poor economy and treasury, a people increasingly disenchanted with their leaders: all of these combined to lead to the overthrow of the French monarchy. A similar number of usually disparate, yet in each event of change, interconnected factors, occurs in other times of change: from the beginning of WWI to the ending of the Cold War, to the start of the Russian Revolution of 1917, all share a similar number of factors which led to their creation; in a sense, which lead to the inevitability of each event. Though the factors themselves are not always the same, in some way they are all similar; as Mark Twain once said, “History doesn’t repeat itself. But it rhymes.”Let us begin the examination of the era shift by looking at the trends which are likely coming to a close, and the probable results of their ending.First, there is the United States. In 2008, there will be a new presidential election, ushering in an administration which will inevitably be radically different from the current administration. Very different policies and people will be running the show for the first time since 9/11; thus ends the trend of George Bush’s policies and actions, one which has been progressing through the post-9/11 period.The second trend which will end will result from American involvement in Iraq. By the end of 2008 (if not by the end of 2007), America will have either stabilized the country, or withdrawn all its troops. In either case, the vast majority of troops stationed in Iraq will be withdrawn. Though many of the comparisons drawn between Iraq and Vietnam are incorrect, from an exclusively international relations standpoint, post-Iraq policy will be similar to post-Vietnam policy in one crucial regard. This is that, for the first time since the end of the old War, American foreign policy will withdraw into itself, lessening drastically in both scope and intensity, for at least one full year, which is all the time that is needed for the new trends to arise.Indeed, Iraq is not the only reason America will withdraw from the world. In truth, Americans seem to be tired being involved in the world, tired of shouldering its burdens. After having a foreign policy which places emphasis on caring for people, not for any possible gain, but simply to help them, for two full generations; another full generation taken actively helping the poor, deprived, and diseased in the world, they are simply tired of it. After seeing so many dead from genocides, pointless wars waged by maniacs, a[...]