The 4th turning, the social class warfare and revolutionary component
For the second article on the 4th turning the focus will be on population structure/ classes and the dynamics that often takes place within such cycles, leading to the degradation of middle class of society and the solidification of elites as the result of tougher economic conditions and often chaos.
The outcomes of 4th turnings can be two (using history as guide assuming that third or other options have no clear patterns):
-One is the solidification of status quo elites as 4th turning becomes "managed or controlled demolition". Current status quo elites, consolidate even more power as they "guide" the 4th turnings path. Hence "controlled demolition".
-The second outcome is where it turns into revolution and elites are often in the targeted wealth transfer process and their power is stripped away (Romans had plenty of such experience and so did French). This means status quo elites lose their footing against the newly established elite class that replaces them. (We are witnessing the attempt of that currently in United States). This is why triggering revolutions on a large scale (imperial powers especially) can be highly disruptive and unwanted outcomes for elites. Because this is uncontrolled outcome with many unknowns for those currently in control.
4th turnings typically bring inflation and lowering of living standards (due to geopolitical fracturing).
For any inflationary uptick of 1% in CPI index the middle and lower class take a significantly higher load of negative consequences versus the elites which take much less. This is due to the difference in how much % of income is exposed for the consumption of necessities and business operations (as chart above shows). Because lower classes spends a lot higher % on those necessities, any inflationary added pressure creates over long run weakening of living standards. The worse it gets, the more this holds true and the gap widens between the classes. This is one of the reasons why the gap between the elite and lower classes of society keeps increasing in such a tough times of 4th turning (even if it already was bad enough in good times of growth).
If you think the wealth and expenditure gaps are bad in US right now between each society class, then dont be surprised few years later to see it increase even more, faster.
Lower living standards and difficult conditions "lower the voices" of lower and middle class people. They have to start extinguishing fires in their backyard which creates distraction, leaving elites with a bigger open path for progressive policies (if that is within their interest, which in 4th turnings it typically is, as those times bring the most changes to society).
So think of lower living standards and difficulties as a "decrease of voice currency". The middle class has more voice when things are going smoothly in a peaceful environment. Their voice goes further. By "voice" it means, the administrative, political, and local contribution to shape the direction of the country.
If people are oppressed through weakening economic conditions, followed by a rise in censorship or other oppressive measures as we are witnessing it currently, that leads to the reach of the voice shrinking.
This explains partially why 4th fourth-turnings bring so much of progressive policies that come with a sweep and no resistance because the population is distracted (so much happening everywhere). Distracted through chaos ongoing either in their region or globally (Covid, Ukraine, Israel, Taiwan,...) or distracted just by passive consequences of such chaos which is reflected by rising inflation, which ends up hurting everyone.
Because the "reach of voice" drops, as a result, this brings frustration to population. Resentment. People start to observe their freedom is decreasing and the environment is not improving. This doesnt happen over night, its multi-year process. This is why the class "well-being" gap as a result creates more friction within society. This also explains why in some cases in the past this has led to revolutions.
I have written about this in the prior article already (part 1), but it's important to highlight it again and how it wraps in the whole class issue.
Class warfare as the epicenter of the 4th turning
The 4th turnings are in society a part of evolutionary whipsaw events, semi-manufactured to trigger the liquidation of both human and resource capital. Things are burnt down and then rebuilt differently back on. Wait, you mentioned "manufactured"? Manufactured by who?
The concept of class warfare is nothing new. The architecture of slave systems and how the ruling class used historically the workforce, or the hot-cold relationship that the middle class has towards elites historically has been something that elites are spending a lot of time dealing with. How to hold what has been gained by those at the top. How to expand the power and prevent the rising classes from becoming challengers (just like China is a challenger to the US, the middle class becomes a challenger to elites if growth and prosperity globally just keep rising infinitely). That is where the end-game is. So the status quo elites typically start creating "the counter end-game" process to prevent challengers from flipping the status quo.
Politics and shaping of global policies (and the cycles that happen as result) is a game of chess. One player making move, another one countering them. One is taking initiation and lead, the other one is responding with reactionary action. And then roles can also switch. 4th turning is the attempt to switch the roles. Rising challengers trying to overturn the (expanding) status quo.
Millionaires and middle classes role in the 4th turning
Understanding how the rise in millionaires and people who push themselves from lower classes into higher classes (and how this dilutes the power of elites) is an important process to understand the 4th turning.
Within the class of establishment elites, the agendas are set. New players are introduced and welcomed but at a slow pace over the years (so that establisment doesnt get diluted). If establishments could just keep the same people for eternity within their circles and not introduce anyone new, they would. As new introducing participants could be wild cards or potential change of direction in the future within organization. However, since everyone is mortal, even status-quo "circles" need fresh blood to replenish the shortfall. But the idea is that this replenished individuals are introduced very slowly in such circles, otehrwise the direction of agendas will change as too many new people will introduce new ideas that eventually might get traction.
Who participates in shaping ideas on how the countries are run or directional changes of economies? Mostly:
-wealthy CEOs or public creators-influencers (non-elites),
-corporative class (elites),
-technocratic (non-elected) or political (elected) capital (elites usually).
-govt administration staff (non-elites but loyal to elites)
The people who control the shaping of most biggest policies (elites) do not want to see too many people enter the class of "wealthy CEOs or public personas". Because those are likely to become people with their own ideas about how to lead the country that diverges from the path of where the established elites want to take it. This is why the large increase in millionaires is problematic from the viewpoint of elites as it guarantees to introduce new larger number of challengers at some point. Some of those individuals think for themselves and do not see the need to tie to the same agendas and directions of elites (especially if they decide to participate in politics later more actively). Which can turn them into challengers more likely than other sections of leading "shapers". Those who are self-thinkers, cannot be bought, have plenty of spare capital and have visions that do not bend to the established ideas of elites. Therefore are challenger material. From the mentioned 4 sections of "shapers" above, the first section is where likely the challengers (to current status quo) show up the most. Money is a large component, and not just anyone is by default challenger material for elites: To significantly impact policies or political changes money is typically required (especially to dismantle policies). Financing plenty of different activities before a certain agenda is achieved. Which is why the challenger needs to be well capitalized. Usually, its because to challenge something as big as establishment it doesn't just mean to finance oneself but to finance different ongoing operations that are needed to achieve a particular agenda.
Historically aristocracy isn't overturned by farmers or working classes, instead, its overturned by aristocracy itself (or at least that is where the control of rebellion is financed and organized from). Lower ranks of aristocrats unite and cooperate together to remove higher established ranks of aristocracy.
And please don't take it wrong, the challengers can come from any line of the population, including those without any meaningful capital. It is just that, typically behind any united resistance there is a guiding aristocrat who is the challenger to the established elites. The capitalized individual is the leader of such a movement either openly or not. That is the takeaway on why so much attention might go to the wealthier part of the population, millionaires at leat from the viewpoint of status quo elites.
1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th turning:
The identity of prosperity above on image.
2nd and 3rd turning over 20-40 years, will increase prosperity, lift many people into higher classes, and therefore ensure that new challengers to status quo / establishment will emerge over time. Prolonged prosperity creates (capable) challengers. Bad times create challengers too, but their power is weak. Prosperity creates more capable challengers in the end of 3rd turnings.
We should not think about challengers only as concepts between countries (China challenging US power, much of which was written on prior article part 1) but think about it from an internal country or organization perspective: new CEOs or politicians (typically wealthy) who are challenging established elites within the same country.
Those who have over decades established themselves as elites want to ensure their grip on % of total wealth and contribution of leading policies remains in the same proportion (highly to their advantage), which is why they would want to do all in their power to remove the challengers.
Those who become challengers, and have enough wealth to endure the fight want to see the world or countries taking different turns and therefore become the challenging power against the status quo. Essentially that is the one of the battles within each 4th turning. But there are many more.
In some countries this is less expressed for example my own country in the middle of Europe. A tiny country with a small influence of global corporate capital and not too high a wealth gap.
And then there are other countries opposite of that, such as the US. Huge wealth divide, large influence of corporative capital, and increase of wealthy individuals over the past few decades that are now coming into the frontlines as challengers.
This is why the 4th turnings class warfare in my view will have its ground 0 on the soil of the United States out of any country in the world. There is no country with more expressive conditions that lead to the above idea of incompatibilities between status quo powers and challenging rising individuals that have used 2nd and 3rd turnings as their wealth-building years. No other country has more elites and more people within potential class of challengers for elites. And no other country has so many major geopolitical challengers as well, more than the US.
To outline what was said above, let's use a simple chart to illustrate that. Growth in a number of millionaires chart below.
The fast rise of millionaires is not random. It is a condition made through the high exposure to globalization, plenty of tech innovation, easy credit access, loose monetary fiscal policies, growing opportunities due to increased prosperity within the nation, etc. The US benefited from those listed variables more than many countries, especially looking on net combined basis. This explains partially why growth of millionares in US was bigger than the rest of the world.
But keep in mind, many millionaires or wealthier CEOs are not by default looking to participate on either side of 4th turning. They want to mind their own business just like many other people.
It is this particular sub-set of society that gets dragged into taking sides eventually. Because, unlike the rest of the population, they are at higher exposure and higher target aim by those who wish to covert them on one or the other side. To explain this process crudely via The matrix movie:
One is taken into a room where you are introduced to a guy named Morpheus (as Neo) and take the red pill. After which you are expected to become challenger to status quo. Or getting bored of playing rebellion and fighting for chosen values side, and opting out by taking the blue pill instead and zombifying yourself (Cypher) because your values of leisure (and being tired of constant defeats?) are higher in priority than fighting for a meaningful purpose (often rocky road). That is the two sides of pills that are force offered to population in times of 4th turning.
In 2nd or 3rd turning such concepts of The Matrix movie are interesting intellectual concepts, in 4th turning, they become reality for many. This is why Matrix is getting recently labeled as a movie that doesnt age and gets more real as time goes by (since its early 2000 creation).
Why wealthy CEOs or public influencers? There is a law in nature, that says that animals who create stable living environments for themselves can think more (spend more time on thinking conceptually), and deploy more time into being playful (which expands brain capacity and creates societies). Instead of looking over your shoulder when is the next biggest thing that comes around going to eat you, you have more time to spend on playing around, and thinking conceptually because the stability and height of living standard allows certain animals to do that (climbing on top of food chain). Such animal class is the mammals in many regions. Rising on top of the food chain as a shark is not enough, one needs to sit back and think and be playful to advance in the true hierarchy of nature in recent times. And most importantly, being able to "hoard" resources (as wealthy do) is as well key. Humans out of all mammals are best example of that, and we can further extrapolate how excess resources, lead to more free time or to put it better: Giving more freedom for those to decide how they will spend their time. Which is often the necessary pre-condition for challengers.
This is why the wealthier participants are more dangerous challengers against the status quo of elites because they have more time, more resources, and more dedication towards the cause if they feel like there is a need to "fight for something".
What/who is a millionaire? (from the viewpoint of elites)
From a tactical standpoint, a millionaire is likely a person who has financial stability, more assets to deploy in fight and is more likely to be an independent actor due to lesser dependence on state or outside conditions. Due to stability and higher social status, those individuals can be useful players for elites or sometimes nightmare material if united against elites.
Therefore millionaires for elites can be useful servants (historically knights) or challengers (knights who conspire to overthrow the elites).
That would fit the historical and current times identity of what one might call a millionaire from tactical-unit standpoints if we asses the chessboard from a position of elites. Society still functions under feudal structures in many ways and forms, its just that we no longer use the same phrases or attach the meaning to classes of participants.
There are multiple variations to explain that, but we can agree that in general many millionaires are people who have risen from the working class into higher level middle class. Or people who have risen from the lower portion of the middle class to the higher portion of the middle class. What is the next transition from the higher middle class and upwards? The elites.
This means technically, milionare could be either a 1. recruiting agent for elites to aid their efforts by joining the corporations that are under of control of such people. Or they could 2. turn into challengers. This means creating the business routes or companies that eventually turn into challengers of prior established corporations run by elites. What comes out of that is a clash of ideas. Clash of where to lead the society as a whole or sometimes just a business sector.
One has to multiply this process by the number of 1000s of people to understand why over time (in one or two decades) it all of sudden becomes a huge problem for status quo elites.
The ideas of established elites and people supporting those versus the new rising challengers who wish to take the world in a different direction. Especially the US. Why the US? That is where the most millionaires were made over the past twenty years (excluding China which has a much weaker contribution to total corporative capital of G8s in terms of idea input outside of their country's borders).
The class warfare has its ground 0 within the United States. This is where the 4th turning key battle will take place in upcoming years, even though proxy wars might be taking place globally completely elsewhere (which is where most of the people's attention spans will be spent).
To summarize, a milionare can therefore be divided into two or three categories:
1. An aid of elites and their ideologies and agendas,
2. A challenger.
3. Neutral participant (opportunistic play on both sides).
And there are a lot of people who are in the neutral stance in the middle. But over time as 4th turning progresses more eventually pick the side, away from neutrality. Neutral participants are over time converted into agents as the 4th turning progresses.
4th turning as result has within its path the recruitment of escalation or de-escalation agents. Agents come from the lines of millionaires, influencers, celebrities, and generally upper-middle-class people. Those are the first targets of 4th turning forces to either overturn them (if challengers) or to invite them into the collaborative state as agents of escalation.
Within the 4th turning anything that is confronting, escalatory, provoking, progressive, or to keep it in light French: Anything that steers the shit up is welcome for agents on the side of the escalation.
For de-escalation agents, generally, it's the opposites that are the core of values, but actions do not differ much. It's because a fight is about due in either case and the only way to victory is to fight between each side. This ensures that de-escalation agents actually end up using similar escalatory actions as well.
The agents (escalation or de-escalation contributors)
What is meant under escalatory agent, as an example:
Let's say you are a social media influencer with a big reach, specifically talking about concepts that are "hot provocative topics" and also emotionally triggering topics. This is process on how influencers are recruited into the side of agents (knowing or unknowing):
Someone approaches you with a message for potential collaboration. All you have to do is to create messages that aid certain sides' agendas. Obviously, as a reward, there is a monetary payoff for such actions (numbers go from 1k to 5k for particular videos or multiple tweets, depending on size of followers).
Over the past 5 years, we have seen in the pharmaceutical industry (COVID-oriented influencers) as well as in geopolitical warfare (Ukraine/Israel) influencers who have come forth and provided plenty of proof of how those contacts are made by certain state actors. There is probably a lot more that we dont know about because we dont hear about it. What comes on top of surface is only icebergs, most of the ice is still hidden under water.
Some are therefore recruited to participate potentially on the side of escalatory agents of the 4th turning. Many of those people do not know the big picture of why someone would want them to spread particular messages. It's the elites who deal with that. The agents are only meant to obey and be in the service. And sure some do know fully the extent of long term consequences they might cause with their actions and therefore still proceed.
What would be an example of a de-escalation agent? Let's say that there is a person (lets use influencer again as example) who wants above all to avoid conflict in Ukraine or around Israel and therefore they keep posting messages of truth from both sides of the conflict (to decrease propaganda from both sides).
It is well known that to de-escalate conflicts by providing as much information from all sides involved is typically the way to go because manipulations from either side can therefore be uncovered. This brings more clarity to situation (and confusion too). Which helps to possibly scale back the escalatory forces.
To use a well known statment "first casualty of war is truth": Manipulation of society into war is one of the very common ways in which major powers (and people in control of those) achieve that wars begin in the first place. This is because society by default will much more likely operate in a peaceful state if allowed. So you need to push people and manipulate them often to ensure the rise of hatred and readiness to fight (from perspective of those who wish to see conflict to emerge).
If controlling powers want to see 4th turning to escalate, this individual (influencer posting honest material from both sides) becomes an obstacle. Therefore censoring or worse (blocking of bank accounts) could be used to silence such individuals to remove the obstacle of 4th turnings path. There are many of such examples to list over past few years, especially from social influencers side.
Giving examples from "influencers" above because it is one of those that more people will be able to understand how this recruitment process is happening passively (without people knowing how they are playing into 4th turnings aid). Remember that many such individuals who do it, are bought and paid for. So that makes you wonder, if its so easy to buy main influencers in any field, one can drive the narrative into wanted direction on any event given. Meanwhile people think that its mainstream media that is dishonest and deceiving, but not many actually have realized by now, that its no better on social media. Hijacking and Trojan horsing is taking place everywhere. The question is just do you see it? In 4th turning manipulations rise everywhere, so expect them from any unexpected angles as well. The angles no-one is talking about yet.
The idea is, that most people become an agent within 4th turning. Eventually, majority will pick the side, you just don't know when you have decided to do so (because it is not a split decision made within a day, but a slow re-configuration and guiding process that happens over one, two, or few years).
The question is just how do we play the cards that we are dealt with? Recruited agents do not come just from the upper middle class, or influencers as the above example suggests. All classes participate. It is just that those in the upper classes have much higher public reach by default, and are more likely to participate in executive functions of the state, therefore their voice and positioning matter that much more. This is why the "Trojan horsing" from both sides is already taking place.
Manipulations (and how they tie into social class warfare)
Let's explain why in 4th turning manipulations and dis-honest events rise in frequency. Unless you live under a rock you probably have noticed that the number of macro events over the past 3 years that are manipulated/orchestrated to a certain degree has increased many folds using the 20-year context. Or at least if not that, you perhaps noticed a lot of lies everywhere lately, coming from the top of state actors. Significant rise enough (for those of us paying attention to such things) that it signals cycle change (the end of 3rd turning).
Why are manipulations, or the rise thereof such important signal?
Many games (such as capitalism) within society have a structure where top players sometimes tend to turn into manipulative behaviors if they are let to sit in an established position for a decade or more. Over time (for those wishing to dominate and not just be mediocre), the task of dominating such a game becomes how to consolidate and hold the gained wealth/operational reach. Because those who try to dominate always have challengers, as only few people within each game are allowed to dominate. For example you as reader or me might not have such an appetite, but in large chunk of games (with enough of diversity in population), eventually someone will want to dominate, and hold onto the position and gained ground by using any means under the umbrella of legal to hold that (and often not legal but secret where manipulations come handy). If you read Machiavellis' work, youll understand why his "manipulation guides" are written for the above outlined group. The reason why it matters to you as reader (even if you have no such appetite) is because those who wish to dominate and are willing to use any means of manipulation to achieve it will eventually impact you through their actions, no matter what.
Because we live in quite a democratic society with the rule of law, aristocracy can't behave as bold and plain as they have before in medival times for example. This means, that whenever someone is trying to be an obstacle to the agenda of a certain individual on the side of aristocracy, it is not anymore possible to just hire a mercenary army and deal with that challenge plain and bold. No lies, just pure aggression to secure the position. In the past, this was the common route, often after the king or ruler had given the blessing then the selected aristocrat could punish and deal with competition problems in many different ways, which usually involved a classic/symmetric warfare approach.
However, things have changed to some extent (especially the stability of constitutions of G8 countries and strong rule of law) preventing the aristocracy from operating in plain sight as bold anymore. So they became more cunning. And to execute on many agendas it requires lies and manipulations, which is where controlling of the media comes handy (So from position of such rulling class - while you manipulate the event itself, you also shape the public opinion via what you want media to tell to people). And obviously we are not just generalizing as this does not apply to whole class and everyone, but to some individuals, which are in great enough numbers to talk about larger sample size.
Manipulated events are in most cases the result of players that control the flow of the game trying to bend the mechanics of it into their own interest. Manipulations in markets are typically done by larger funds that have enough capital to hijack the orderflow of the assets and can manipulate the inventory they hold.
Manipulations in state structures are done in the same manner by those that influence society and politics (through many ways of lobbying) the most, which is the elite class primarily. Therefore manipulations are typically done by much more outnumbered players versus a much bigger group of other participants. Manipulators are typically singled out. 1 versus the 1000s. This is one of the reasons why elites would want to keep tactics around manipulation more under use, rather than showing hand bold and plain (as it was done historically) which could trigger too big a cluster of population that would unite against the actions of a much smaller class of elites. Because they are outnumbered, the manipulations are the safest way to achieve agendas. Especially when agenda is beneficial to elite class but not so much anyone else.
If you understand the dynamic of numbers above, it should be easier to notice why manipulations should rise within 4th turning (as status quo elites start to get more challengers), and why we should expect more manipulations on global scale for this decade. And after the 4th turning is done, expect the inverse. Shrinkage back.
Manipulation of society into divisive situations, via creating escalatory events that create division in society. There are two ways to look at the events globally. You can take it from the viewpoint that literally everything that happens is random. And happens by chance. Or one can establish view that a lot things that happen are orchestrated from the background. Once you dismantle your childs view (that everything happens randomly by chance) you have foundations that are realistic enough to build on top of.
For example what is meant by that: One can take a stance that the reason why people are getting so easily provoked recently is because of so many random (and extreme) events taking place recently, or you might take a stance that society is intentionally orchestrated into provocations. Why? Because it serves the escalation agents and agenda of 4th turning (to restructure the world under the new progressive views of current status quo elites).
If we break down what is the 4th turning, its really good to stop thinking of WW1 or WW2 or similar phrases, because that is what people usually think of when they are discussing 4th turning. That is simplified view that diverts attention too much into classic warfare, while not addressing the warfare aspects of 4th turning that happen outside of frontlines of Ukraine or Gaza.
Which is the fact that hybrid warfare is better phrase to summarize the 4th turning. 4th turning=Cluster of different type of crisis events within a decade, under umbrella of hybrid warfare as part of attempt on society-restructuring process.
Think of 4th turning instead as a high cluster of escalatory events globally. Which means that those events might not have a direct correlation to military operations. Those escalatory events could be completely civilian in nature, or economic, yet still escalatory.
For example an act of prices of wheat spiraling high (2022) is not necessary a "war signal" that could be signaling WW3, but it could be just another 4th turning event that is escalatory in its nature. It leads to higher expenses for lower classes in society and can lead to some countries in Africa or Mid-East to find themselves being cut-off from wheat supply (as it is partially happening currently). 4th turning is much more than just military confrontations of geopolotical challenging powers (which is core of 4th turning, but not the entire essence). So think of 4th turning as stack of escalatory events, which come in multiple directions. Modern hybrid warfare is a construct of:
-asymmetric (proxy wars),
-symmetric (direct super power conflicts)
Those are some components around how 4th turning could show its face. The aim for those who wish to see 4th turning to escalate further is to create or help aiding global provocations and events that sink people in, creating heated opinions and splitting society in two or more camps. Splitting Chinese elites against American elites, LGBTQs with traditionalists, climate deniers with climate agenda promoters, Palestinian supporters against Israel supporters, and so forth.
The more of such splitting is created over time it starts to stack up. Unity is weakened. And within split society it becomes easier to then push agendas in the middle of it. And remember, you do not notice the "stack effect" quickly. Over years it starts to become much more noticeable, how the buildup is affecting everyone, especially if it keeps going nonstop as so far past 3 years have been.
In 4th turning the topics are escalatory in the nature, more than in other times before. Do not be surprised that over past few and next few years that the nature of discussions online or physically becomemoree and more heated as result. Why? Because many will bite into provocation traps and will get manipulated into it. That is what historically tends to happen (because to see manipulations for what they are it requires reserach/homework which many do not dedicate to), aiding the fuel of 4th turning.
And to be "neutral" on opinions while avoiding adding the un-neccesary fuel to the fire can be also difficult, because staying neutral is often a consequence of privilege (living in right location, etc). It will be test for everyone even those who see clearly through manipulations, because to afford to stay on the de-escalatory side and not bite into provocations can become difficult when you are constantly being fed with fires around you.
Turning everyone against each other
I think it is the key to talk about the concept of class warfare because that is one of the concepts within 4th turning that gets as little attention as possible. It is intentionally diverted out of the eyes of the media so that the ruling class does not introduce the revolutionary heat elements that could later on destabilize the agenda. This means bringing forward all geopolitical events possible to divert people's attention from the fact that class warfare is ongoing within your state. And yes this concept is explained predominantly through the view of US citizens because as mentioned above, this is the ground 0 for social class warfare. Many other countries will deal with 4th turning in different ways, and their focus might not go in this direction as much possibly. But for the US the story is there and it is already in motion. If you are from Washington or NY, chances are you won't notice it, because the trickle-down mechanism of corporative/elite capital feeds those places the most. Which de-incentivizes those people to open their eyes. Why would you bite the hand that feeds you?
What was meant under the title of "turning everyone against each other", think about it from the perspective of the "plotters":
If you are the ruling class which represents a tiny fraction of society, you still need an army to aid agendas, otherwise, you are outnumbered (regardless of capital size). And that does not mean the army as within the typical definition of armed military units. We are talking about the army of the civilian population, the members of many different cults and organizations (including state agencies). People who turn out to become agents of escalation under the 4th turning with an agenda to sew the separation between the classes and population. Sure thats not the memo of why they sign up for such cults or organizations, but that is the result effect. Bringing forth very progressive and controversial ideas that end up splitting society on opinion with very emotional stances, leading over time to an increase in violence and a decrease in the cohesion of the entire population.
For example, if you look back over the past 5 years, what can you notice? Division and heated discussions on many new ideas and progressive policies that were brought forward. And no country had more initiative on that than Canda, US and Australia. More division on opinion (and oppressingg the people who are willing to voice different opinions than what states stance is):
-Covid (pro or anti vax. Remove people from the job who stand against it. Punish doctors by firing them if not following the rules. Rewarding doctors who do follow covid stances led by the government, led by technocratic elites. Strong separation of opinion and therefore splitting society in the middle). Forget about who is right on wrong the idea is to just highlight the fact on how those events brought separation within the society.
-Ukraine war (Russia has the right to project proxy power in Ukraine just as US did with Cuba in 1950s either that view or Russian leader=Hitler. Separation through the event that splits public opinion globally in a strong manner, especially between Eastern Europeans and Asians and the westerners). Again forget about who is right or wrong in actions of Ukraine/Russian/NATO conflict, this isnt about seeking the end-conclusions. Its just to highlight that those events are highly escalatory in terms of civil opinions and create friction in global socio-stability.
-LGBTQ and traditionalists. Strong split in the middle between those who seek to establish this as new status quo within society and schools and those with traditional values who think this is step too far. Again, more friction, even in schools.
-Climate agenda (the world/society is going to end if we don't stop all fossil fuels, or the other side of argument of those skeptical and looking for clear evidence of such statements). First of all there is no definitive "confirmation" about what kind of "doom scenario" is realistic to expect, which means that the agenda or problem itself can never be solved. The heat will remain because both sides cannot bring conclusive facts to confirm for 100% that either side is right. This ensures that topic as such can be a multi-year if not multi-decade fuel to fire on public heated discussions. Again splitting society through very opinionated topics that do not unite. Split in the middle. You are on the left or you are on the right. Or maybe you haven't made your mind up yet, but you will. Because the topic will grow over the years so you'll be forced to look more closely into it.
-Israel-Gaza escalation (probably the most splitting one of them all so far). Again forget about who is right or wrong, and which actions were "acceptable" for counter-measures and what not. Just think about the situation from the socio-splitting effect. It achieves its goal to high extent.
Therefore above events they split the society, they weaken the middle class (decrease unity) and within the weakness gap is where the corporative capital will then use Trojan horses to achieve particular agendas.
What has happened since 2020 and the start of 4th turning (in my opinion) is that the number of events that are strong at splitting public opinion has increased dramatically. If the default stance of humans is to be peaceful, then someone has to work very hard to push enough people to turn the other way into their escalatory chimpanzee nature. Stop thinking about escalations or provocations to happen just sponatenously. A lot of it is orchestrated from the background as a part of big picture view. When we have 100 of different events in play in such tight time capsule It has to be orchestrated to some degree so that the "flow of the cycle" keeps it path.
Divide et impera
We are all well familiar with the concept of divide and conquer. Let's think about it from the perspective of social class warfare. When you are elite class and represented by a tiny fraction of the population, it is impossible to win the agendas by going against everyone. If the population unites under one banner, and everyone is on the same page, the class of elites cannot achieve progressive or escalatory policies (because they get blocked too often). Therefore the need to divide the population is so that it creates weakness, creating split groups that end up fighting each other rather than uniting under the same banner recognizing "who is actually cooking the soup". Therefore divide and conquer.
China-Mongols, historical example. China had a divide-and-conquer tactic for centuries against the Mongols. They knew the last thing the ruling class of Chinese wanted was unified Mongols, as that would represent a dangerous rival. So they ensured constant friction between Mongol tribes, pushing them against each other (usually financing one leader behind the backs of others to ensure someone attacks someone else, steering the pot). This created weakness and prevented the population of Mongols from uniting. It kept Mongols technically under control of China for centuries. Divide and conquer from more typical angle.
The divide and conquer in its core often draws from the value differences of participants. What triggers people to clash with each other is typically the differences in values. The groups or cults are there to provide different value sets for individuals, and the more progressive those are, the more likely it lead to clashes whether in opinions, conversations, or event incidents.
Progressive policies can pass easily in times of distraction and conflict
If you think about all the progressive policies or extreme events that have come out over the past 3 years, when the globe is under significant distraction and chaos either from geopolitical escalations or pandemics or economic conditions worsening. It is no surprise why in the middle of all this distraction there are progressive policies that are given the day of light.
Progressive policies pass easier in "distraction" times, often which are at the advantage of elites but at the disadvantage of most others. Let's use climate policies and ESG as such example:
-If you were to pass CO2 and climate emission limitations (significant limits on consumption and implement social credit scores as the aid of such policies) then passing those controversial and progressive policies in 3rd turning and time of high globaly growth is difficult (2010-2020). Because when the globe is growth oriented, those policies either wont pass (will be shut down by lobbyist or politicians) or will be rejected by population through soft rebellion. But most importantly, those policies do not pass because they are never placed forward by the elites or coportative capital in times of 2nd or 3rd turning and strong globalization cycles, because it is against profit interests at those times. When globalization is on the rise, the idea is to maximize profits. To do so, limiting consumption policies are not welcome (from corporative or elite class view). That equation changes in times of 4th turning, because the profits and globalization shrinks, making smaller pie for everyone.
4th turnings actually make "belt-tightening" policies profitable for elites when global growth begins to shrinkincentive, which creates more insentive to push such policies only then.
When 4th turning comes around, and inflation rises and the economic prosperity of population declines, it is more likely for such policies to pass. Because arguments can then be made:
-"We have to all cut down on energy spending, because we have geopolitical supply or moral issues from Russia, or Iran etc...".
-"We have to stick together and all limit spending, due to problematic conditions".
Do you see how this works? And think about it, if there is an honest shortage of resources, then elites would want to limit consumption for masses to ensure that the operations of elites are not disrupted at the expense of everyone else.
When the shortage of resources or growth (because growth is a resource too) comes into play (always within 4th turning) then those at the top ensure that their operations are still funded and liquid at the expense of removing that extra capacity from everyone else ("because there is less growth to go around"). That is essentially what happens every single time, which is why 4th turning often brings fascism forward as corporative and state powers merge as a result (elites want state to protect their assets more tighter).
Think about it this way (by putting yourself into shoes of others):
If you were to have progressive ideas (many of them) that benefit you but not most people, how would you pass those policies? In peaceful times of unity, it is unlikely they would pass in large number unless one has strong lobby in parliament/senate/congress and has all the corporative and political aid needed to push such policies through.
And it's unlikely because when people (including politicans) are not distracted they will jump on the first too-progressive policy and tear it apart. They will see it as a unit of potential fractioning (and competition to the "old ways") even if it has long-term positive effects, most progressive policies tend to be short-term disruptive. For example, sure significantly limiting Co2 production/consumption use could help the pollution, but is there a significant negative impact on GDP growth as a result of such regression policies? For sure. Most progressive policies have such an equation.
Therefore to pass large number of progressive policies, distraction is required. Distraction weakens the defenses of resistance. Who are we talking about? Legislative, judicial, senate, and congress participants. Those that have the power to veto or pass laws. Therefore those who truly control the world through the eyes of global corporative capital would want to create distractions to pass progressive ideas (if for some reason there is need to pass large number of them within a decade). To make the biggest extrapolation possible: In which times constitution of a country is most likely to be scrapped and rewritten? Under 4th turning or just after it.
-If done within the 4th turning it usually is bad (Germany 1930s), because it allows totalitarian control to block civil rights under the "emergency power act".
-If done after 4th turning it's usually for the better, because it is part of a restructuring process that allows for a new phase of growth.
So keep an eye on if those big changes start to happen too soon into the current cycle it might signal bad things are on the horizon (within G8 economies).
Remember "state of emergency" is sometimes the code-word used in the early 4th turnings to re-do countries' constitution under new harsher totalitarian control from the top actors.
4th turning is just a test that every individual has to go through?
Historically if you are alive for more than 50 years, statistically its highly likely to participate in one 4th turning eventually. So let's look at it from more of bright side perspective, where we take a destructive or disruptive event and try to make the best out of it, or make positive out of negative. Embracing the challenge because if we cannot impact the path of global society as individuals then the only thing you can control is what to think out of situation that is in front of you. Complaining versus taking each challenge as opportunity to grow and learn from. Painting ourselves the illusion that we have things under control.
Maybe this is just an evolutionary path that we eventually have to take as a society. Maybe a portion of progressive policies would slowly pass eventually anyways, it is 4th turning that is used as catalyst to pass them quickly (assuming that there is enough of positives to justify those policies over long run).
4th turnings are used to ramp up and condense those policies for the sake of not just for elites to solidify their positions (as progressive policies benefit them the most) but are also part of long term evolutionary game that society as a whole is playing which is=progressive capitalism is pretty much the system that we all contribute on (with United States clearly taking the lead). This makes the whole labeling of "dark side" and "light side" within 4th turning more difficult.
The only very clean cut we can make is that 4th turning does split society into two or more sides as mentioned above. The agents of escalation and agents of de-escalation. And those who are either temporary or fully commited to neutrality (not being provoked).
If you look at history and mark the 10 years before the start of the 4th turnings (over past 500 years), and the initial 10 years of the 4th turning it is noticeable that resistance always increases and the de-escalation agents do their best to prevent the cycle from deepening. History shows us that most of those attempts are not successful and that the 4th turning goes where the initiators of such a cycle want it to go most of the times. For example if there is challenging element rising within US and Japan or US and Germany back in 1930s, it can be very difficult or impossible for de-escalatory participants to stop the escalation from happening. Because once the rivalry and challenging conditions become heightened betwen superpowers, someone within either of countries (from class of elites often) will ensure that conflict eventually happens. So that challengers are removed. Meaning that no matter who operates on political or socio spheres of either countries would have very difficult task preventing 4th turning to escalate in such case. The nature of challengers and rivals is what gives 4th turning a base on top of which then the agenda is built. The agendas pushed by the elite classes, the status quo elites typically.
This is why its worrisome to understand that current times if they are part of 4th turning will likely lead towards more friction and separation within society, because resistance units will show up, and so will the escalatory units, both fighting for different outcomes to either over-turn the 4th turning, or to ensure its progress into further depths (so that challengers are removed).
Such equation above when applied globally can bring more de-globalization (nationalism), more inflation, lower stability and regional chaos eruptions, orange revolutions, and other events.
Think of 4th turning as a big bearish cycle within society. If we use extrapolation towards markets: When the bear market starts in one asset class, a few buy orders will not be enough to prevent further selloff. It takes much more and it has to come from top-down policy changes usually to bottom out the bear cycles.
The same concept would apply to 4th turning and why de-escalation agents especially when operating solo and not in well-organized groups have a low chance of preventing 4th turning to deepen and to stop the cycle itself. Just as few buy orders cant turn bearish market cycles so cant few individuals participating on de-escalatory side of 4th turning, unless the organized movement from top down is made. Turning the cycles requires significant effort, and usually cannot be done without the aid from the top.
Trojan horses and infiltration of organizations (government and private NGOs)
When speaking about the concept of Trojan horsing, it means that any organization or team can be infiltrated by either agents of escalation or de-escalation. Those can be self-financed or bought by "the bigger guys".
Historically under 4th turnings in the initial stages of the cycle, the escalatory forces will Trojan-horse all government agencies, corporations, and key systematic institutions with their agents. This is to ensure that certain policies pass which ensures escalatory progression.
Are you confused why in US there is so much political discussion about "changing the administrative state" of country lately? It is exactly because of that. If you havent taken the time to look up very closely on this topic, you have probably not noticed it, and might find the whole thing just a big witch hunt. But its not. It is aligned with 4th turnings cycle dynamics.
To outline Trojan horsing further: For example, placing a particular individual in a position of United Nations that steers conversations or votes suggestions in favor of no-peace when certain events ignite. Or firing a certain CEO who works for a large shipping/docking company and replacing him with an individual who is willing to sabotage his own company with restrictive policies that push the dock into an un-operational state in the US (2020-22). You might be wondering why would anyone want to do that. That is the concept of the Troyan horse.
Most of this happens due to monetary rewards, meaning most people engaging in such activities do it simply for the sake of monetary reward, not fame, not recognition, and not due to a lack of moral stance. For example, one might have a 500k yearly salary to operate the shipping-port company (from above example), but one might get 10 million in gifted art piece such as a painting for the "service" you provided as a Trojan horse. Art is a common way of rewarding such practices so that the marks of bribes don't have fingerprints.
And yes those are not theoretical examples, those are real individuals that I listed as two above, leaving names out because its the example that matters more than individual, since individual can be replaced under reference. Different company, different people, but same actions. What matters in the end is just the pattern itself rather than the individual specifically.
Neutrality becomes more expensive over time
The process of time duration and how it impacts you if you consider yourself to be a neutral participant and not highly opinionated:
You might think that as you watch from sidelines all the disruption of 4th turning, to remain neutral is the best choice. You don't want to have an opinion on progressive policies because you think it creates a divide inthe population. You know the agenda that is in play and don't want to play into it, making it worse. Is this it? Is this how easy it is?
As time goes by and you become surrounded by more and more of such progressive ideas and tough times that 4th turnings can bring, the more chances there are that you will be dragged into this or another group. Or opinion. Therefore over time more people become steered into becoming the agents of escalation or de-escalation even if their intention from the beginning was to stay on the sidelines. The more those topics press on you from the circle around you, the more they demand your stance (especially if you are a guy). Left or right. Blue or red. Pitchfork or heavy cavalry. Working/middle class or elites.
The soup is cooking. You are the ingredient, we all are. Can you stay in the soup while being dislocated out of the mess that is cooking, or will you become part of the mold that the ingredients of soup steer you to become? There is no right or wrong answer, your actions are your own. Going with the flow or fighting the flow.
Is class warfare a symptom or created intentionally?
"The difference between what is seen above the water surface and what is under the surface and not seen (typically bigger)."
Often the symptoms are visible, but the cause is often not. To visually understand the difference between each the above image illustrates it well. Causes are much bigger and typically hidden unless one is willing to dig deep enough to find them. This is why social class warfare in 4th turning is seemingly all a symptom because that's what everyone sees. However...
4th turning historically brings larger gaps within the society and population classes. Partially it happens as a symptom of the escalatory events and environment that it brings which is negative and creates more burden for population to carry. So partial answer is, that it's a symptom, but that is only a partial answer. Gaps and division are happening because of difficult situation and friction. But we all know symptoms are not initiating. Something else is initiating before the symptom shows up.
However, if we take into account that some propagate and do their best to deepen the 4th turning through aiding of escalatory policies and that aristocracy historically always felt the need to keep the rest of the population obedient, weaker, and having only limited voice in saying what the direction of country should be, then we can start to see that behind the curtains it is possible the class warfare is indeed intentional. To keep the gap and for the aristocracy to ensure the application of 3 listed variables, class warfare comes for granted.
This should explain that it is both a symptom and created intentionally. How much of each is hard to define.
What if the growth story of global economy never ends, and there is no conflicts and pax Americana (100 year global peace) is applied? Where does this leaves the elites in their tracks?
We have to understand the context of last 50 years to see where the end-game possibly goes. As the global economy further globalizes, achieves more growth and more people are brought from poor living conditions to middle class and more middle class people are brought higher on societal ladder, the natural process of that is dilution of elite power. Because of the rise of challengers within the state itself. Dilution of power means that prior status quo elites start to loose their entrenched positions against new rising challengers. This over time introduces more and more new influential players who do not agree with the current directions set not by political and corporative powers. Hence=dilution of power.
If 2nd and 3rd turnings which often are the growth stages for humanity keep lastning forever (theoretically) what would happen as such result is that geopolitically powers would shift and stronger economies (such as China currently) would eventually take the directional control of the globe (away from US elites). Because if you let the growth (without being disturbed) to just keep going, that is what eventually will happen.
This same process happens to the power of elites within any country not just from external challengers of outside countries but internally from rising wealthy population. As more people rise through middle class and higher, the dilutive effects on policy directions of current established elites rises. Therefore creates a clash and revolutionary conditions. Those are pretty much the conditions that typically historically have led to revolutions. It is because of that why elites try to front run such process by preventing revolution with intentional weakening of society in advance, through introduction of 4th turning, before the revolution could take place. It is in the end really just one very very big coup d'etat. Coup d'etat against those who try to coup d'etat in first place.
When middle class matches the elites
The 4th turning and the class warfare is essentially the product of middle class matching elites in their stability, reach of the voice, and just gaining more followers while elites are slightly loosing out (dying of mainstream media run by corporative capital as one example over past 15 years). "What scares the people in power the most is when the general population becomes equally strong as them."
To leave the name out of who has said above, there is significant depth behind the statement.
Empowering citizens of developed nations over the past 50 years through globalization has led to regular citizens matching elites in freedom and stability of lifestyle. Alt media has become louder and listened to than any media channels curated by elites. But make no mistake, this battle isn't done, the battle is only beginning as the ruling class will try to overturn this process of "over democratization". Its fallacy for people to celebrate the decentralization of media as the victory yet. That victory is not yet solidified and its likely the pushback will happen (mass censorship and removal of alt media voices over next several years to some extent). It will start with biggest and loudest voices and then trickle down to everyone. How can one make such terrible yet bold projection? Because in every 4th turning that is what happens. Censorship and centralizing control (countering decentralization movement).
Historically those cycles have happened many times where the middle class starts to match closer to the elites through the rise of democracy and living standards (2nd and 3rd turning). Typically this happens as a result of excessive economic growth and collaboration of those two turnings. I have outlined this already in a prior article, to not repeat myself too much but that is an important part of wrapping the entire 1st-2nd-3rd-4th turning of societal cycles. "Who gets to rule the world" is essentially the core piece that explains why those cycles happen the way they do. The obvious media cover stories are just distractions and side battles, while the big battle is fought between challengers.
For elites to solidify their positions and increase the gap between each class of population they (some) might have the interest to intensify the forces of 4th turning to achieve just that. Separation, deglobalization, inflation, wars. Those 4th turning variables deepen the divide between the population and lift elites higher while pushing everyone lower. 4th turning is class warfare in the core, not geopolitical manifestations. Its just that often the class warfare jumps outside of single nation and becomes nation-to-nation conflict between the elites of different countries.
But the fight is never painted as such. We are meant to believe that when two countries or different ideals fight its about "fighting for democracy" or similar slogans, while the reality is mostly about protecting status quo and fighting off the challengers. This is why countries actually go into wars, and someone finds way to push them into that. Someone who?
In my view one cannot understand the 4th turnings and history itself if you do not spend a considerable amount of time researching the elites, aristocracy, and in general, the methods used to entrench the positions of such top-players or the methods used to destabilize the challengers. Studying their methods is a must (mainstream education does not at all introduce you with this concept). And where most conventional education goes into "what US elites are doing against Russian elites, or Chinese against Mongols" that is not the entire picture (as internal countries struggles matter as well).
When you de-fog the geopolitical curtains and pull them apart, all you are left with are naked classes of different parts of society. Through their honest means, one can tell when certain individuals within their own country are working against a certain portion of the population by dragging them into situations they haven't signed up for. Because geopolitics will hide the real intent through the emotional and ideological cover-up. Within the internal state there is no geopolitical challenge, but there is still a class divide and from time to time and if pot is heated up those division cause frictions.
I think that my value comes from being brutally honest while objectively following the 4th turning developments from both sides. From my experience, most guys are not able to do that. Mostly due to being emotionally triggered quickly by such discussions, unwilling to dig deep enough to find truth (coming to fast conclusions), etc.
To layer out what 4th turning is about in my view, it is important to position yourself at the same time in the shoes of elites and the shoes of the rest of the population to understand the likely maneuvers that might be taken from both sides. The only way to anticipate moves in advance with some degree of accuracy is to always obsess and research both participating sides, never just one (whichever you consider to be your current default).
The 4th turning is the restructuring event of the society. After each 4th turning the global economy gets usually a new monetary system. New (or old) superpowers take charge and lead the world, and the seats change sometimes (but background players from elite circles stay the same more or less either way unless revolution has taken place).
Comments from J.Powell FED chairman above on image. We have all heard the saying that "when debts become unbearable, the countries tend to go to war".
As a part of restructuring event usually the nations are taken into 4th turning to provide the cover to trigger debt-restructuring afterward once the conflicts end. It is no random that 4th turnings happen right around the situations as we see it currently where the leading power (US) is loosing the grip of its debt (and has large increases in fiscal spending to finance the interest payments as we have seen over past few years).
Those in control understand that if the debt situation for leading power is unsustainable, and massive cuts in spending are impossible (without crumbling the nation's geopolitical reach or cutting the consumption significantly which US economy relies on to achieve large chunk of growth) then using cover story to trigger restructuring is what they might go for.
The debt restructuring "operation" after the 4th turning completes. After each prior case over the past 500 years, that is the typical result. If you understand the correlations to history you should recognize why even though nothing is certain (and we don't know where the path will lead us in the future), we can say that variables are set. The fix is in. It will cause friction, regardless of where the outcome is 10 years into the future.