Currently reading

The Art of Fiction: A Guide for Writers and Readers
Ayn Rand, Tore Boeckmann, Leonard Peikoff
The Name of the Rose
Umberto Eco
Ghostwritten
David Mitchell
To the Lighthouse
Virginia Woolf
The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire
Edward Gibbon, Daniel J. Boorstin, Gian Battista Piranesi, Hans-Friedrich Mueller
Gödel, Escher, Bach: An Eternal Golden Braid
Douglas R. Hofstadter
Perfect Wrong Note - Learning to Trust Your Musical Self
William Westney
The Prince
Niccolò Machiavelli
The Varieties of Religious Experience
William James
Twenty Questions: An Introduction to Philosophy
G. Lee Bowie, Robert C. Solomon

The Fourth Turning

The Fourth Turning - William Strauss, Neil Howe Predicting the future has historically been a somewhat sketchy, if not occasionally lucrative, occupation. How are Strauss and Howe doing, casting their lots with Ray Kurzweil, Arthur C. Clarke, John the Revelator and Nostradamus? Commendably I'd say. The book was written in 1997 and here, 13 years later, it feels like they were fairly accurate with their cyclical approach to history and its implications for now and the near future.The third turning, the one we're in now, and which is about to end, is "a downcast era of strengthening individualism and weakening institutions, when the old civic order decays and the new values regime implants." A fourth turning is "a decisive era of secular upheaval, when the values regime propels the replacement of the old civic order with a new one." If they've demarcated the cycles of history correctly, we're supposed to be entering a fourth turning now. It could entail war, major social, economic and political changes or worse. Whatever it is, it will happen quickly and affect almost every aspect of life.According to Strauss and Howe, there's nothing we can do to stop it. It's a historical cycle, written in stone and it's coming regardless of our attempts to stop it. The best we can do is prepare. They suggest strengthening reputations, families and preparing yourself financially. If we're ready for it, a fourth turning can lead to positive change once it's over. If not, it can lead to a complete collapse.We'll see how it plays out. If they're right, all that will be starting any day now.