Wednesday, December 29, 2010

The Year ahead: Woodstock on welfare, the end of globalism

by Bernie Qugley

For The Hill on 12/29/10

Woodstock on welfare: The year ahead will be distinguished by a singular feature, reported by Associated Press: On January 1, more than 10,000 baby boomers a day will turn 65, a pattern that will continue for the next 19 years. This is a problem for which there is no central planning solution. As Texas Rep. Ron Paul has said, this could bring a “Soviet style collapse.”

The system falls to its natural frailties. Since the early 1800s when deTocqueville wrote about America and Russia, we have been in a competition which might be called Marx vs. Keynes; megastate vs. megastate. But since WW II the western states have filled in. The internal regions have developed as “natural states.” The competition today changes from Marx v. Keynes to Keynes vs. Hayek: From global megastate vs. global megastate, to internal competition within and between the American regions. In my opinion, America has reached its beginning.

As the new census data indicates, Americans are moving from the Northeast and the upper Midwest to the South and the Southwest. Culture and politics follow economic power and people. The west will advance at the expense of the northeast. The Bush v. Clinton contention, which extends bipartisan control coming from the northeast (Kennedy v. Lodge, Catholic v. Protestant), is archaic; a residual nostalgia influence of the century past. It will yield to demographics. If it does not, there will be trouble.

The end of globalism: The Elliot Wave Theory predicts that the dollar ends its curve as the relevant currency this year. The Strauss & Howe generational theory also predicts chaotic turning in this period. It has already begun. Economic turndown changes the game and new elements enter as dominants. Israel, China and the BRIC network rise. But the world is a donut where they play soccer on the outside and football on the inside; it is better to be in the inside with Tom Brady and Michael Vick.

Globalism was a feature of the American conquest in WW II. The arc is complete. New archetypes will awaken, new ideas will open, the new century will begin. Key to this will be decentralization and the awakening of states and regions to their own rhythms and styles and political demands. It is already happening. In cultural terms, the uniformity and sameness of the “Leave it to Beaver” generation will yield. (Diversity is an illusion: Beaver, be he black, female or gay, is still a banality.)

Much of this was caused by the babies being born at the same moment at the end of World War II (10,000 a day) and domination of the FCC control. It caused producers to self-censor and produce bland content. There is genius ahead suggested in the direction of Darren Aronofsky ("The Wrestler") together now with Natalie Portman in “Black Swan,” perhaps bringing a new generation to the arts in strength and character. With the FCC off their backs, writing, directing – art – returns in cable shows like” The Sopranos” and “Mad Men.” The screen gets smaller, yet the drama more engrossing. The strangely addictive tale “Dexter,” tells the nuanced and archetypal story of the god which comes with a sword. Storm coming.

Best reading: With the demise of globalism, the influence of the priests who accompany the conquerors will diminish. To see the contrast in our day in which celebrities like Bono, Elvis Costello, Pamela Anderson and Lady Gaga regularly advise globally and form foreign policy, to a time when this kind of work was done by people like George Kennan, George Marshall and John Forster Dulles, look to the new book “Going Home to Glory” A Memoir of Life with Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1961-1969,” by David Eisenhower and Julie Nixon Eisenhower.

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