Sunday, December 12, 2010

A chart showing the cause of the revolt in the UK

Numbers from UN population division.

Today in 2010 there are living in the UK about 3.6 million more individuals between the ages 40-55 than there were twenty-five years ago, in 1985. If you further compare the years there are 1.1 million fewer people between age 15-24. The number of individuals between 25-39 is about the same.

This is a fundamentally different demographic structure and it has an influence on culture and the way we are governed. This bubble which is now middle aged (20 years ago it was 20-35, or even 20-45 as the baby boom generation in UK was post war to 1970) has over the last thirty years redesigned governing and economic structures to employ more of themselves in high status, high earning leadership roles. As the bubble rose, the institutions expanded with their cumulative desire for high status, wealth and power.

The effect of this is an extraordinarily expensive architecture of transnational institutions and unaccountable political networks and the tab is now being picked up and felt most by students who are expected to pay high £18-27k tuition fees.

To employ more of themselves the baby boom generation has created more ersatz leadership positions which carry little responsibility but a lot of weight in money. They have expanded international institutions, funded non-governmental organizations and set up quangos and regulatory bodies to police business - rules which favour big, high-status, high-earning (for the directors), transnational businesses.


As the chart shows, the most bloated annual cohorts are not expected to retire for another 5-10 years. In this time they will continue to seek to generate more high status, high earning leadership posts so that as many of them as possible can have a cushy desk job, a title and jet-setting lifestyle that requires 'work' attending conferences that are situated within walking distance of a fine tropical beach.

The last thing this ageing but still ambitious generation wants to do is fight. They think they rule the world and want to do that from the comfort of their well-paid chairs. It is however as yet an open question for how long the generations coming through are going to be prepared to subsidise the lifestyles of this old elite.

Unlike in 1985, because of the huge burden of parasitic elites, the economy is not likely to undergo a boom any time soon. The huge number of young people in 1985 had space in which to rise into well-paid positions because there were 3.5 million fewer people in the most powerful 40-55 age group above them.

As such the only way this younger generation can get anywhere is by 1. physically removing the generations above them or 2. by radically "downscaling" power-structures into an anarchic hyper-localism (or both) and allow the transnational and national institutions to "wither on the vine".

Once this generational conflict has been resolved over the next decade there will be a cultural conflict between the rising numbers of immigrant descendants.

There is a similar demographic profile to the UK in other Western states.

3 comments:

  1. How long is the historical cycle you posted about on the EUReferendum blog? Is it the same as the four seasons generational cycle of about 80 years postulated by some Americans?
    Do you foresee a relatively slow decline into third world conditions, or a more violent collapse?
    If there's anything in the ideas of reincarnation and karma, is it likely to be those who benefited from the fat-cat non-jobs who get reborn into poverty to suffer the effects?
    What is the meaning of the title of your blog?

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  2. Sorry I've taken so long to respond. This is the first time I've looked at my blog since I wrote this. (I'll write a note in my sig at EU Ref forum that I've responded to this comment).

    How long is the historical cycle you posted about on the EUReferendum blog?

    There has only been one history and the observed cycles have had different lengths, all four phases (expansion, stagflation, crisis, depression) documented between 200-300 years. I get this information from this book.


    What interests me is the length of time from Expansion to the beginning of Crisis phase (which follows the elite Golden Age). As yet it's unclear the exact manner one phase progresses to the next but the Muscovy Cycle (1460-1620) took 105 years to get to the Crisis phase.

    Key question for us, of course: when did the cycle start? (I'm just speculating: I don't know).

    What I recognise is that growing inequality, burgeoning useless aristocratic class, and conspicuous consumption together with stalling economic activity MUST be a sign of the second phase - stagnation/Golden Age.

    I think this has been going for at least a decade. If the expansion phase is prior to the economic boom after the Second World War then, if the Crisis phase takes at least 100 years to occur, we are looking at 2045. Might the expansion phase have occurred earlier? I'm afraid I don't know enough at this time to comment.

    Wild card is whether new technology may affect the cycle lengths, perhaps accelerating them.

    Is it the same as the four seasons generational cycle of about 80 years postulated by some Americans?

    See above book. I'm not sure - I've heard of a shorter "Fathers and Sons cycle" but that's not the one I'm referring to.

    Do you foresee a relatively slow decline into third world conditions, or a more violent collapse?

    Sadly I don't think we'll get a violent collapse, more of a disintegration into constituent parts which still have the capacity to self-organise. This is why - completely novel idea as far as I'm aware - I'm thinking regionalism is the next big thing. Aided by technology and the growing divide between immigrant dominated urban areas and middle class, white rural regions, we'll get the rise of regional government. Only regions, not the UK state will have enough social capacity to cooperate to get things done. What we need to ensure is the EU is not involved in this and that any federation is a kind of UK federation, rather than an EU one.

    Maybe I'm talking out of my hat!

    If there's anything in the ideas of reincarnation and karma, is it likely to be those who benefited from the fat-cat non-jobs who get reborn into poverty to suffer the effects?

    Dunno.

    What is the meaning of the title of your blog

    Quote from Nietzsche - link. Literally means "the heaviest weight". Nietzsche, the Godless heathen, thought the idea of endless repetition of events horrifying and something everyone must come to terms with in their own profound way - but I just think it's liberating and proof of God's work. The title is therefore sarcastic. How can anyone say the truth is a burden..?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eternal_return

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  3. When I said "Sadly I don't think we'll get a violent collapse" I'm not referring to my disappointment at the potential lack of violence but that the progress from stagnation to crisis might be drawn-out rather than swift, coup d'etat like. Personally I'm still gunning for the latter, metaphorically of course :)
    We could get both, the collapse of the central government could give rise to regional political strongholds.

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