The “fixes” to the stagnation of postwar Capitalism in the 1970s were financialization, globalism, and the sustained expansion of debt–all have run out of steam.
Many of us have written about cycles in the past decade: Kondratieff economic cycles, business/credit cycles, the Strauss – Howe generational theory (an existential national crisis arises every four generations, as described in their book The Fourth Turning), and long-wave cycles of growth and decline, as described in seminal books such as The Great Wave: Price Revolutions and the Rhythm of History and War and Peace and War: The Rise and Fall of Empires.
There is another Rhythm of American History that few recognize: the economic, social and political crises sparked by exploitive Elites. There are two dynamics that drive these crises:< 1. The exploitation of commoners by financial/political Elites reaches extremes that create systemic instability as commoners no longer have the means to improve their conditions. 2. The economic mode of production that generated Elite wealth no longer functions, but the Elites cling to the failing system and enforce it with increasingly violent suppression of dissent.
Here are the previous Crises of Exploitive Elites:
1. Slavery, 1850 to 1865. Though the toxins generated by slavery are still with us, the existential political, social and economic crisis arose in the years between 1850 and the end of the Civil War in 1865
This post was published at Charles Hugh Smith on SUNDAY, JUNE 18, 2017.