Tag Archives: s-curve

How States/Empires Collapse in Four Easy Steps

There is a grand, majestic tragedy in the inevitable collapse of once-thriving states and empires: it all seemed so permanent at its peak, so godlike in its power, and then slowly but surely, too many grandiose, unrealistic promises were made to … Continue reading

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Here’s The Problem: The Pie Is Shrinking

Scrape away the churn and distraction and the problem is simple: the pie of prosperity is shrinking, and the “fixes” are failing. The status quo arrangement is based on the endless expansion of “growth” and debt, which is the monetary fuel … Continue reading

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China’s S-Curve of Expansion, Stagnation and Decline

Natural and human systems tend to go through stages of expansion, stagnation and decline that follow what’s known as the S-Curve. The dynamic isn’t difficult to understand: an unfilled ecological niche is suddenly open due to a new adaptation; a bacteria … Continue reading

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The Crisis of 2025

While many fear a war between the nuclear powers or the breakdown of civil order, I tend to think the Crisis of 2023-26 is more likely to be financial in nature. War and civil breakdown are certainly common enough in history, … Continue reading

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The Implicit Desperation of China’s “Social Credit” System

I’ve been pondering the excellent 1964 history of the Southern Song Dynasty’s capital of Hangzhou, Daily Life in China on the Eve of the Mongol Invasion, 1250-1276 by Jacques Gernet, in light of the Chinese government’s unprecedented “Social Credit Score” system, which … Continue reading

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