The question of collapse, part 2: Diversity, China, Unrest

Saw this How To Fix America In One Easy Step

The root reason behind the likely pending fall of American Empire is the emergence of a super-class of Left-leaning liberals (I would call them Leftist) whose basic psychology is fundamentally different from their fellow countrymen and from everyone else in the world. They are Western, Educated, Industrialised, Rich (in global terms) and Democratic, or WEIRD. They are not exclusive to America, and are to be found in Europe and a few other majority white economically privileged parts of the world.

In spite of increasing liberalism and diversity, there is no evidence to suggest such a collapse though. As discussed earlier, the U.S. economic, cultural ad tech hegemony is bigger and more powerful than ever. The FBI and other agencies are more powerful than ever, too (except for SEC, CIA, and IRS, but those don’t have arrest powers and their capabilities are quite limited compared to the FBI and the NSA). The government is recruiting these agents from all over the country at top schools. I predict this so-called secret police will be among the biggest growth industries and sectors of the U.S. government, to quash any possible dissent. From mass surveillance, logically follows mass infiltration. This is part of the trend of declining social trust.

To expect that there is some threshold in which this system suddenly becomes unsustainable and collapses on itself, is wishful thinking and not supported by the evidence, I’m afraid. Empires die when they become conquered or subsumed, not due to ‘decadence’ as so commonly and mistakenly assumed by overrated ‘experts’.

Another argument/prediction is that America will become a like a third-world country, like Venezuela, or, optimistically, more like Brazil. Moldbug made much a prognostication in a recent interview with Tucker Carlson (in which I agree with everything else except this one point). But again, the evidence does not show America being on such a trajectory. How many trillion-dollar tech companies does South America have. How many reserve currencies or aircraft carriers does South America have. Why do people keep repeating this narrative when the evidence clearly shows it not being this way. Of course, one can argue that America is becoming more bifurcated, with large swaths of poverty punctuated by enclaves of great wealth, and I think this is a more accurate description. This helps greatly at staving off collapse, because the wealthier parts are necessary for the functioning of everything else. It’s the reason why the US can borrow at 0-2% to fund endless stimulus or healthcare for people who cannot possibly afford it, without which things would really go downhill, if you think things are bad now.

America has significant poverty, but so does everywhere else. The ‘Singaporean-ideal’ does not scale to countries with hundreds of millions of people. But remarkably, the per-capita income of African American households ($46,000) is anywhere from $5-10,000 greater than median household income of the U.K., which goes to show just how truly wealthy the U.S. is. Such high living standards even for the most ‘disadvantaged’ of groups, helps stave off possible civil unrest, which in turn can lead to collapse. I think it is more likely there will be potentially destabilizing social unrest in China, given the widespread poverty there and possible loss of perceived legitimacy of leadership, compared to the U.S. Communist regimes have a long history of eventually failing, usually due to a combination of economic and social factors that converge at the worst possible moment.

There is probably no historical precedent similar to the dominance the U.S. has now. China is America’s biggest competitor, but as discussed earlier, it does not have imperial ambitions, and it would seem as if the U.S. has done more to impose its will on China than the other way around (and China is having a lot of problems right now, anyway). Last year BLM protestors literally pillaged a couple cities, yet the S&P 500 kept making new highs, as did GDP and corporate profits and other metrics. Yet, the collapse of a real estate company in China has become almost an economic existential threat, with similarities to even 2008 being drawn. This shows how much more fragile China is compared to the U.S.

The Chinese annexation of Taiwan is always a possibility, but doesn’t, imho, threaten the overall status quo, in which the US is firmly cemented on top. If I had to put money on it, China will not do anything, fearing worse retaliation from the U.S. than even under Trump, made worse by an already weakened economy.

The USSR, Nazi Germany, Japan during World War II, and pre-1980 China, were much more hostile to ‘American ideals’ compared to modern China, and also formidably smart (the Nazis invented ballistic missiles and possibly also fighter jets). The Middle East is a wildcard, yet we still keep seeing the U.S. playing the aggressor, even when ‘withdrawing’ (anyone who thinks the U.S. is actually withdrawing from anything is deluded). Russia has fallen so much from its Soviet glory days, from threatening to destroy the world in the 60s, to threatening to steal the election from Hillary (which to the left, her losing was end of the world anyway). Italy and Germany, once militaristic superpowers, have gone down the same social-justice route as the US, but even more so. How many times has the U.S. apologized because its drones keep ‘accidentally’ hitting civilians, like none?

CRISPR (and genomic editing, overall) and embryonic selection for traits such as IQ is another wildcard. Either this will gain rapid adoption like the world wide web did in the 90s, or it will remain a niche technology for many decades to come, without much mainstream adoption except for limited applications (such as gene therapy, which is used for therapeutic purposes, not to make ‘super-humans’). I don’t subscribe to the belief that China will employ this technology to dominate the world, all while the U.S. is encumbered by political correctness and ethical issues and just sits back and does nothing. If China does avail itself of this technology, so will the U.S.: the U.S. will not willingly lose an arms race, ever.

Another common argument is that diversity is destabilizing or will be the undoing of America. But why would elites promote diversity if diversity is supposed to destabilizing? U.S. elites, in politics and business, have more status, power (except politicians, who have a lot of status and wealth but not much power anymore), and wealth then ever before despite more diversity than ever before. I don’t buy into the argument that elites are so crazy or so endeared to their ideology that they will knowingly act against their own interests. Diversity is a means to an end, not the end in and of itself. These are people who are among the most successful in the world today, who went to top schools, and are represented in the highest positions of power and prestige. They got where they are not just through connections, but also by being really smart and cunning. The last thing they will ever want is to relinquish this wealth, status, and power, if they can help it. As many have already observed, it’s evident also that changing demographics, such as immigration, works to the democrats’ advantage in the long-run.

Events such as the George Floyd BLM riots and Covid are not bad enough to be destabilizing, but help to erode social trust. The fact that the BLM protests ended as soon as Biden ‘won’, is evidence of the entire thing being orchestrated by a higher power from the onset, much like a controlled demolition. Increased diversity, while eroding social trust, also promotes stability by creating an environment in which individual morale is depleted and apathy sets in, and people can no longer trust each other (glass barriers at food stores is just another symptom of lowered social trust), making any sort of cohesion or shared interest impossible. This is why prison separate inmates, to prevent them from coordinating anything. Not just cultural and racial diversity, but also great economic and social diversity: the rich and the poor, the uneducated and the educated (a big factor, perhaps the biggest one), liberals and conservatives, the young and the old, etc. The notion that ‘red states’ are less diverse than ‘blue states’, is clearly empirically false even if red states have a greater percentage of whites relative to population, because diversity is much more than just skin color and race.

Overall, in part due of the ‘system’ taking the necessary measures to prevent its collapse , including suppressing political resistance to it, there is little reason yet to expect its collapse. If collapse does come, it will likely have to come from the top rather than the bottom, such as by affecting the funding/revenue sources that allow the US to borrow extremely cheaply to keep the infrastructure intact.

4 comments

  1. USA=Brazil is literally what you said. “Large swaths of poverty punctuated by enclaves of great wealth”
    Yes, Europe is poorer, but the disparity between the rich and poor is smaller. Brazil’s economy is larger than Chile, but better to be an average citizen in Chile. Same concept.

  2. I think many of your points are correct. Especially about China. We will see. I myself invest only in American companies, because as bad as the US is the rest is even worse.

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