The coming collapse

Under the old US constitution, around 2000 or so, in order for the bureaucrats to spend money on something the house of representatives, the senate, and the president, had to agreed to spend money.  Thus in order to do stuff, politicians had to pass a budget, and bureaucrats had to spend within that budget.  Passing the budget was power, and politicians were eager to work on the budget, each one wanted a budget, so he could get his own fingerprints on it, for the budget dispensed money, and money is power.  Back in the day, you would have found it hard to stop politicians from budgeting even if you held bayonets against their throats.

The new rules that have gradually taken effect are that bureaucrats may spend money unless the house of representatives, the senate, and the president agree to refuse to spend money – kind of like a family where the kid can appeal to daddy, then mommy, then grandma, and the least restrictive parent wins.  And if daddy stuck to “No!” not withstanding being overruled by Grandma, a most horrible screaming would ensue.

This renders budgets irrelevant, so no one has much interest in passing them.  Budgets have been an empty ritual for a decade or so, and now you just cannot get politicians to bother to show up for the meaningless  ritual commemorating a political system that has passed away

The new rules necessarily lead to crisis and financial collapse, so unless republicans grow a pair, pass a budget, and insist that no spending be done except as authorized in the budget, the US is pretty much doomed.

Of course, such insistence would probably require calling out the militia and involve extensive fighting in the streets.  All the mass media, probably including Fox news, would protest that a return to the constitution as it was around 2000 or so is a return to the dark ages, and equivalent to the rise of Hitler, so the Republicans understandably lack enthusiasm.

If you look at the federal register, you will observe that it used to consist of rules, prefabricated quarrels.  Everything went in there assuming that someone was going to be told what to do, and would try to find some way around it, so it was necessary to pin down precisely what they were to be told to do, so they could not weasel out between the commas.  Now there are no rules.  The federal register continues to grow at about one hundred thousand pages a year, but no one cares what  is in it.  Bureaucrats exercise discretion, case by case, and the federal register records meaningless makework performed by low level bureaucrats.    So now, there are no rules, and no budgets, no constraints.  It is somewhat surprising that they continue to pretend to have a federal register, when they have stopped pretending to have a budget.  Regulators continue to ritualistically make rules, not because anyone cares about what the rules say, or because the rules say much of anything, but because rule making signals they are paying attention to certain activities.

As a result the federal government is a string made of sand.  Lacking all discipline, it necessarily lacks all cohesion.  Today, there are neither rules nor budgets.

The way a government works, the way that a government can exist, is that you have a bunch of elite males (women tend to be largely irrelevant to the process) who settle their internal disputes by means short of violence, and then present a united front to outsiders.  The insiders are then stronger than any one outsider, or any natural group of outsiders, and can use violence unopposed, hence the saying that government is a monopoly of legitimate violence.  Any one outsider, or small group of outsiders, any small group of subjects of the state, faces the entire elite united, the entire apparatus of the state.  So he loses, and losing, his resistance is seen a illegitimate.

Political correctness undermines the cohesion of the politically correct, and the lack of a budget or rules are a manifestation of this lack of cohesion.  Lack of a real budget eventually leads to hyperinflationary currency collapse.  Hyperinflationary currency collapse is usually followed by regime change, not because the collapse undermines legitimacy and provokes revolution, though it tends to do so, but because it is a manifestation of lack of cohesion and discipline.  If the elite cannot hold themselves to a budget, neither can they resist revolution.  Regime change and hyperinflation are not caused by each other, but by lack of cohesion and discipline.

Financial collapse is probably a decade or two  off, though it could happen as early as 2012. As long as every bureaucrat has a no limits credit card, can probably buy off trouble and buy up unity.  Thus revolutionary change is likely to follow, rather than provoke, financial collapse and hyperinflation.

Of course, regime change does not mean the regime will get better.  It could easily get worse.  However, in the coming armed struggle, people who believe in revolutionary change will have an advantage, so it is going to be patriots versus communists, and the patriots are better shots.

Suppose the patriots win?  What then?  One solution would be to revert the electoral system so that only heads of taxpaying households vote.  A better solution would be to revert the constitution, so that the only permitted activities of the federal government are war, interstate transport, and the post office – and the federal government has no authority to collect income tax.  States could do all the stuff the federal government does today, but because of interstate competition, probably will not.

But governments will slither out of any constraints – a more realistic good outcome is a chain of wars and crises that destroys the capacity of the government to do very much.

The Bush-Obama regime  in the US resembles the Freis-Allende regime.  Freis was a supposed right winger, but his solution for dealing with the left was, like Bush the younger, to move far, far left, in an effort to hog the center – but of course the center simply moved far, far left, resulting in the election of far leftist Allende by a rather thin plurality, just as Bush the Younger’s swerve left led to the election of Obama.

Obama, like Allende, plays at being good cop, with the supposed revolutionary far left being the bad cop – but the good cop and bad cop are quite visibly in cahoots.

Allende, like Obama, ran gigantic deficits in an effort to buy up legitimacy, which gained him quite a lot of support, but not quite enough.  Pretty soon the money ran out,  whereupon Allende ceased to woo support by playing father Christmas, and instead revealed the iron fist – proceeded to apply old fashioned Marxist methods.

The US government however, has more financial credit than Allende had.  How much more, no one knows, though we shall soon run into the limits, at which point Obama, or his designated bad cops, will reveal the iron fist.

Perhaps the Cloward Piven strategy will succeed, leading to transnational socialist dictatorship.   The Cloward Piven strategy is that once the money runs out, transnational socialists should blame deregulation and capitalism and apply the iron fist.

I think it unlikely that this strategy will succeed.  The socialists are most likely going to get shot.  That does not, however, necessarily mean that things will get better.  We might find ourselves with national socialism, rather than transnational socialism, for once the shooting starts the multiculturalists will be revealed to be weak, and to be revealed as weak while in power is apt to be fatal.  Once the $#!% hits the fan, subsequent events are likely to be surprising and unpredictable.  One good thing is that if the army splits into factions after the pay runs out and logistics collapse, all the guys training troops in acceptance of homosexuality and so on and so forth will be in the tranzi faction, but all the troops that have seen battle will be in other factions.

There will be hyperinflation in the next couple of decades, possibly within the next few years, possibly as early as 2012.  The signal for the start of hyperinflation will be empty shelves in the shops, as it was in Allende’s Chile.  Following hyperinflation, probably violence, and probably regime change.  After that, my crystal ball grows cloudy.

2 Responses to “The coming collapse”

  1. Matthew C. says:

    Great analysis, Jim. These people know nothing other than the blank check and the printing press. Then they lie like dogs about the inflation rate and GDP growth. Hence, the obliteration of the currency is in store unless we see a complete regime change in Congress and at the Fed.

  2. Alrenous says:

    “Political correctness undermines the cohesion of the politically correct,”

    Does it? How so?

    “Financial collapse is probably a decade or two off, though it could happen as early as 2012”

    It would be so incredibly funny if the ‘world’ actually ended in 2012.

    “Of course, regime change does not mean the regime will get better. It could easily get worse.”

    Odds are good, though. It’s hard to fuck up worse than democracy. Especially as, in the West, overt theocracy can’t achieve perceptions of legitimacy. (Which is why progressivism has to lie and evade so much. Shame they’re so good at it.)

    I’m betting we see more Somalia and less Ivory Coast. You still get the mass death, but things end up better overall.

    Similarly, as governments collapse, the citizens become open to the possibility that they don’t know anything about government. Lots of local crackpot gov prophets will flourish – but that is also an opening for a local expert, who would rapidly outcompete neighbouring crackpots.

    As much disaster as these things portend, they also portend opportunity.

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