Peering Into the Crystal Ball, We See… Instability Leading to Collapse, by Charles Hugh Smith

Charles Hugh Smith is looking into the same crystal ball as SLL. From Smith at oftwominds.com:

We can only choose one: open, dynamic stability (evolution) or autocracy (instability and collapse).

When the fundamentals of life change, every organism must evolve or die. This is equally true of human organizations, societies and economies.

Evolution requires conserving what still works and experimenting until something comes along that works better. We call the fundamentals changing selective pressure and the process of experimenting with mutations / variations natural selection.

In genetic and epigenetics, this process is automatic. In human organizations, those in power influence the choice of what is conserved or replaced and what it’s replaced with. Those who benefit from the current arrangement will fight to conserve it as is, while those being weakened by selective pressure and those hoping to gain advantages with a new arrangement will fight for replacing the old with the new.

Longtime correspondent Ron G. recently shared an insightful economic characterization of this dynamic: wealth defense vs wealth creation. Those holding the system’s wealth have few incentives to risk changing the system, as those changes could undermine or erode their wealth. They have incentives to limit evolutionary forces that threaten their wealth as a means of defending their wealth.

Those who have lost wealth and those with little wealth have incentives to change the system to favor wealth creation.

We can describe the first as orthodoxy–evolution threatens the stability of the status quo, so limit evolution to the margins–and heretics being the second option that tosses out the status quo in favor of a more advantageous variation.

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