ZMan walks us through the institutions that have burned through their social trust and then finishes by saying that the American Empire will soon have its collapse like the Soviet Union.
I think he makes a lot of good points. But it’s not clear to me that any systemic collapse is likely to happen anytime soon. And the reason for that is a collapse doesn’t occur until some external event intrudes. So, when will that happen? Well, it could happen tomorrow or it could be a decade. Now, I don’t think it will be a decade, in fact I could see something happening within three or four years but I wouldn’t even think of saying it’s going to happen on such and such a day. I think a good trick would be to try to guess what the external triggering event is likely to be. An easy guess is a financial collapse. The result of some kind of stagflation or very high unemployment might be enough to destabilize the political situation. But if we are talking about a societal collapse like the Soviet collapse it would be important to know what the US military would do in the case of essentially an insurrection. And that will completely depend on who is in the military at the time.
It’s fun to imagine a scenario that will end the Left’s hold on power. But trying to predict its occurrence against a calendar is maybe too difficult to try at this time.
Hat tip to Vox Day as he links to and quotes a very interesting article about the decline and fall of the Roman Empire by one of its modern descendants, an Italian chemist named Ugo Bardi. Vox is referencing in his title the science fiction story “A Canticle for Leibowitz” where a future world forms monasteries to preserve knowledge through a new fictional Dark Age as the analogy of us recognizing the coming Dark Ages after ours. Which also hearkens to Rod Dreher’s book “The Benedict Option: A Strategy for Christians in a Post-Christian Nation,” where he compares the present societal decay with the post Roman age that sparked the monastic age. Bardi in his article goes into the extant texts of Romans from the beginning of the Roman crisis under Marcus Aurelius all the way to end of the Empire in the Fifth Century to argue that the Romans never figured out either what was happening to them or that the Empire could end.
I’ve been fascinated by the spectacle of the Roman Empire since I was a schoolboy hearing about Rome from my Catholic grammar school nuns. Thinking that we are in an analogous situation is equally fascinating and depressing. But maybe there is still time to avert such a collapse. Vox thinks it’s probably too late for the US. I try to be more optimistic. If you find the current societal situation at all analogous to that other example of civilizational collapse then you might be interested in looking at both posts.