William Lind explains when the world will end

Summary: As a New Year looms ahead, fears of doom or even an apocalypse fill the minds of Americans. William Lind asks a question on many minds, and gives a provocative answer. It provides a context for our fears — and hopes.

Clock at the end of the world
Clock at the end of the world. By xetobyte at DeviantArt.

When Will the World End?

By William Lind from TraditionalRIGHT.

With the commemoration of Christ’s first Advent, the end of the calendar year and a widespread (and justified) sense that we are all walking on the edge of a precipice, an old question pops up again: when will the world end?  Many seers, prophets, and charlatans have predicted a date when the world will end, only to find themselves both relieved and disappointed.  Unlike them, I know with complete certainty when the world will end.  It will end on June 28, 1914.

Had Archduke Franz Ferdinand lived, we would almost certainly inhabit a better world.  There would have been no war; he was the leader of the peace party in Vienna.  Without the vast civilizational catastrophe that was World War I, the West would not have lost faith in itself, its culture, and religion.  Instead of cultural Marxism, we could still have Christian, conservative monarchy as the West’s leading paradigm.  I doubt the House of Hapsburg, which had twice repelled the Moslem hordes from the gates of Vienna, would have opened those gates to more than a million Islamic “refugees” (really migrants).  Interestingly, it is mostly states that were part of the Empire, Hungary, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, that have the moral courage to say no to the EU’s refugee quotas.  

Archduke Franz Ferdinand
Archduke Franz Ferdinand.

Had the Archduke lived, there would be no Lenin, no Stalin, no Hitler, no Holocaust.  Israel might have been established as a province of the Ottoman Empire, under German and Austro-Hungarian protection; the Zionists were quite influential at the Viennese court and Kaiser Wilhelm II had a number of close Jewish friends.  

Russia, which by 1910 had reached the economic takeoff point, would not have lost the 60 million people killed by Soviet Communism, the figure revealed when the Soviet archives were opened in 1989.  Economically, the Russian people might enjoy the same standard of living Americans have today, while still residing under a Christian monarch in an Orthodox country. 

Vienna was not only a political capital, it was a cultural capital as well, the rival of Paris.  While the cultural pessimism that now rules the West was already stirring, without World War I and the fall of the Empire it probably would not have become dominant.  Music, art, and architecture would still strive for beauty, not alienation (thank you Theodor Adorno). Nietzsche’s “transvaluation of all values,” where the old sins become virtues and the old virtues sins, would have remained the delusion of a syphilitic philosopher instead of the guiding rule of Western elites.  In the year 2017, a Hapsburg Vienna might well be the source of much of the world’s cultural and intellectual greatness.

Only a handful of people are left who understand how much was lost on that June day in 1914.  With those pistol shots in Sarajevo, the West put a gun to its own head and blew its brains out.  Our history since has been the twitching of a corpse.

In 1971, when doing graduate work in Vienna, I had the good fortune to meet the Empire face-to-face.  My landlady was Frau Baron von Garabedian-Elislago.  Her father was General von Krauss-Elislago, Archduke Franz Ferdinand’s aide-de-camp and favorite soldier.  She knew the Archduke and the last Emperor, Kaiser Karl.  As you entered her apartment, you saw two magnificent Renaissance chests, gifts to her father from the Archduke.  She could remember the picnics on the decks of Austrian battleships in the Adriatic. 

The good Frau Baron was lively, funny, and a window into all that was lost.  She spoke six languages fluently.  She enjoyed high culture as only a truly educated person can.  One night as we were coming out of the Burgtheater she gestured dismissively to two statues and said, “Those are the monkeys who founded the republic.”

Now, we Americans live in a country where the monkeys seem to be running everything.  Our downward spiral accelerates.  Soon, education and cultural levels will be so low that no one will be able to understand the value of a place governed by Christian monarchy and devoted to the life of the mind.  But Hapsburg Vienna was such a place.  Until, on June 28, 1914, the world ended.

————————————-

William Lind

About the author

William S. Lind’s director of the American Conservative Center for Public Transportation. He has a Master’s Degree in History from Princeton University in 1971. He worked as a legislative aide for armed services for Senator Robert Taft, Jr., of Ohio from 1973 through 1976 and held a similar position with Senator Gary Hart of Colorado from 1977 through 1986. See his bio at Wikipedia

Mr. Lind is author of the Maneuver Warfare Handbook (1985), co-author with Gary Hart of America Can Win: The Case for Military Reform (1986), and co-author with William H. Marshner of Cultural Conservatism: Toward a New National Agenda (1987).

He’s perhaps best known for his articles about the long war, now published as On War: The Collected Columns of William S. Lind 2003-2009. See his other articles about a broad range of subjects…

  1. Posts at TraditionalRight.
  2. His articles about geopolitics at The American Conservative.
  3. His articles about transportation at The American Conservative.

For More Information

Ideas! For ideas about using Holiday cash, see my recommended books and films at Amazon.

If you liked this post, like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. See all posts about William Lind’s work, about history, about about WWI, and especially these…

William Lind collected essays about modern war

On War: The Collected Columns of William S. Lind 2003-2009
Available at Amazon.

On War: The Collected Columns of William S. Lind 2003-2009 — Sadly, most of these articles about  are as relevant today as the day they were written. From the publisher …

On War is a seven-year collection of columns written by the father of 4th Generation War theory while observing the U.S. invasion and subsequent occupation of Iraq. It is an intriguing account of a war in progress, as seen through the eyes of a military theorist able to anticipate events with an almost prophetic degree of accuracy. Throughout the book, 4GW theory is defined, described, and refined as events in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other places demonstrate the theory’s utility in making sense of current events and predicting future ones. The inevitable failure of the New Iraqi Army and the U.S.-installed al-Maliki government is explained years in advance, as is the rise of the Islamic State and other 4th Generation forces presently battling for power in post-occupation Iraq.

“Lind also makes an ominous, but compelling case for the gradual spread of 4th Generation chaos and the decline of the state throughout the world, including in the United States of America. Featuring a Foreword by the brilliant Israeli military theorist Martin van Creveld, On War is a fascinating book that is a must-read for every military professional, wargamer, and amateur student of the art of war.

“In one of the key passages of the book, Lind writes: ‘4th Generation war is the greatest change since the Peace of Westphalia, because it marks the end of the state’s monopoly on war. All over the world, state militaries are fighting non-state opponents, and almost always, the state is losing.'”

 

34 thoughts on “William Lind explains when the world will end

  1. The Austro-Hungarian empire’s history is interesting and tragic and I wish it was more accessible here in the US. Then again, we don’t have a ton of interest in history except when we need it to prove our claim of the week.

    Though I always wonder: if monarchy is so great, who should be the king of America? Seems like an important question to resolve.

    1. SF,

      Monarchy as a political system (i.e. the monarch rules) is a primitive system — for obvious reasons inferior to those developed in the 18th century and afterwards. The tragedy of Austro-Hungary is that it fragmented rather than evolve.

      The question raised by A-H’s history — one which we refuse to even see — is if that weakness is inherent in large multi-ethnic states. Just as humanity tested centrally planned economies in the 20th century — with nations volunteering to be guinea pigs — the 21st might test multi-ethnic states. This time with western nations volunteering as guinea pigs.

  2. > Had Archduke Franz Ferdinand lived, we would almost certainly inhabit a better world

    Had Archduke Franz Ferdinand lived, we would almost certainly inhabit a *different* world. Probably one where we were wondering what might have happened if the assassination attempt had succeeded and whether things would have been less horrible. Yes, possibly, but we’d still hate it and think it was horrible.

    There are two constants in human nature. Firstly, we always think we’re badly off, no matter how well off we are, and consequently, secondly, the grass is always greener somewhere else. I’ve the opinion that they are a part of the reason that humanity evolved. I’d wondered if it’s a ‘built-in’ that’s come from our long ancestry as nomads.

    1. Steve,

      ” we’d still hate it {the world} and think it was {is} horrible.”

      Yes, that is what one might think from reading the news — dominated by interest groups, whiners, and doomsters. It is, however, quite a mad perspective. We have seen progress during the past few centuries with no precedent, making the world better in almost every sense.

    2. Exactly how I feel, there’s been no time in human history when it’s been better to be alive.

      I always laugh when people are asked if there’s any time in human history you’d liked to have lived in. They always quote some time on the comparatively deep past. A trip round a UK cemetery ought to cure it, look at the gravestones and see the astonishing number of children from the 17th and 18th centuries…

      My answer was always 20 years from now.

    3. Steve,

      I agree. People don’t know much about daily life in the past, and esteem relatively minor aspects of it.

      For example, historical films portray palaces in the past as unusually large and fine five-star hotels. Everything is clean and shiney. No scenes showing people using chamber pots, or glimpses of how food was prepared.

  3. Archduke Franz Ferdinand, like the Austro-Hungarian Empire, was composed of many parts. Also like the empire, a lot of his parts were contradictory so I have troubles sharing Mr. Lind’s full faith in the man. Yes, things would have been different if Ferdinand hadn’t been shot but the Western world desperately wanted a major conflict. Ferdinand’s death was the pretext for WWI but the vast number of ardent militarists would have found a way to war if he had lived.

    On the other hand, I share Mr. Lind’s sorrow over WWI, his description of the West blowing out its own brains is an apt analogy. But we can’t stop there and declare game over. As other readers have commented, Christian monarchies have generally failed to be even modestly Christian. We can and must do better. Yes, the decline in national leadership has been swift and disheartening but regional, state, and local leaders have been stepping up in their own ways in response. The forces that created the large central nation-state have receded but smaller states living within a protective confederation seem to be on the rise.

    I have no idea of what the future will bring for this country and for the West but giving in to pessimism and looking backwards towards the Golden Age is not going to help.

    1. Pluto,

      “but the vast number of ardent militarists would have found a way to war if he had lived.”

      Counter-factuals are exchanges of unprovable theories. But I don’t see why WWI was inevitable. The conditions that started it had existed for several decades, as seen in the series of severe crises — most more serious than Summer 1914, but resolved.

      An analogy is the Cold War. Both sides has factions eager for war (probably more so in the US). There were close calls, culminating in the Cuban Missile Crisis, any of which could have sparked a nuclear exchange. Probably not a world-ending one (that’s pop fiction, that there is just one button, after which the world ends). But a few megatons detonated on each side. But with some luck we got through the risk period, and tensions relaxed.

      Early 20th C Europe was unlucky, and their folly proved expensive.

  4. I’m all for alternative histories but this one’s ridiculous. Russia becoming a first world country under the tzar? Oh, come on. I can’t think of a better symbol of how cruel, sclerotic, and doomed the European aristocracy was than Nicholas II.

    Lind was very astute about Iraq, but about other matters he comes off as a seriously deluded ideologue. Like the Archduke’s assassination was all that stopped a century of European monarchy… His whole article reads like it was written by a fanatic who needs to live in a fantasy world because he can’t face history.

    1. Carl,

      How familiar are you with Russian history? The modernization of Russian politics began with the 1905 revolution, followed by fitful progress in the Duma (legistlature) sessions: the First Duma of 1906, second Duma of 1907, and the third Duma of 1907 – 1912.

      The Dumas passed significant reform legislation. Russia was well on its way to political reform, accompanied by industrialization and rapid economic growth.

    2. I’m not sure I see your point… I get the modernization of Russia began well before 1917 I just don’t see how that changes what I wrote…

    3. Carl,

      You wrote that “… this one’s ridiculous. Russia becoming a first world country under the tzar?”

      There is no basis for your confident belief that political and economic modernization couldn’t happen in Russia under the Czars. Both processes had started in 1905 and were moving along briskly by 1914 — much faster than happened in nations to the West in the 19th C (after all, Russia was following a beaten path). All that ended with WWI.

    4. I think you’re arguing about something I never said. Saying Russia couldn’t have become a first world country under the tsar doesn’t imply that no modernization occurred under the tsar…

      Just consider that the tsar started a disastrous war with Japan because he considered them ‘monkeys’ and thought a quick victory would stem the tide of revolution. That level of self-delusion characterized the tsar throughout his rule. It’s easy to say ‘the tsar could have not gone to WWI’ but then you could say the same thing about the Japanese blunder too. You could say ‘the tsar could have just placated the reformers in 1905’ or a hundred other reasonable-sounding counterfactuals but you’re not really thinking like the tsar at that point… The regime was by its nature simply incapable of understanding the crises and unrest it was going to face.

    5. Carl,

      ” ‘the tsar could have not gone to WWI’ ”

      You have that in quote marks. But nobody here said anything remotely like that.

      “but you’re not really thinking like the tsar at that point… ”

      Nobody here is attempting to “think like the Tsar.” I pointed out that your statement was counter-factural. Russia was modernizing quite quickly before the revolution, both politically and economically, and there is no strong basis to assume that process would have ended.

  5. This may be the most remarkable thing I have ever read. I cannot believe any modern person would put this vile yearning for religious monarchy to paper.

    1. Cato,

      That is one of the most amazing reading FAIL I’ve seen among the 50,000+ comments on the FM website. I suggest you take off the blinders and re-read it. You’ve totally missed the point.

      This just in: Britain is a “Christian monarchy”, and “conservative” in terms of the broad range of political systems extant since WWI.

    2. Yeah he’s vile. He’s well known for his theory of ‘cultural marxism’ which is basically a repackaging of the Nazi concept of ‘cultural Bolshevism’ so I guess it’s not particularly surprising that the man has a lot of other ugly beliefs.

    3. Tim,

      First, I suggest you comment on the post rather than commentary on the author’s theories – which are irrelevant here.

      Second, Cato’s comment was bizarrely wrong about this post — perhaps the result of very thick ideological blinders.

    4. Apologies editor, I know you run a fine comments section. Cheers Timmy! I was referring to specifically:

      “Instead of cultural Marxism, we could still have Christian, conservative monarchy as the West’s leading paradigm.”

      “Economically, the Russian people might enjoy the same standard of living Americans have today, while still residing under a Christian monarch in an Orthodox country. ”

      “she gestured dismissively to two statues and said, ‘Those are the monkeys who founded the republic.'”

      “Now, we Americans live in a country where the monkeys seem to be running everything. Our downward spiral accelerates. Soon, education and cultural levels will be so low that no one will be able to understand the value of a place governed by Christian monarchy and devoted to the life of the mind.”

      I am am American reader of an American blog, so I did not think my distaste of monarchy would be surprising.

      “In 1971, when doing graduate work in Vienna, I had the good fortune to meet the Empire face-to-face.”

      After reading so much of Professor Forte’s work, and growing up during the War On Terror I have a distaste for Empire as well.

      Referring back to cultural Marxism, I believe in his analysis of cultural appropriation professor Forte points to what he identifies as a postmodernist stance and reminds us that postmodernism emerged at the same time as neoliberalism. It’s not clear to me what author is referring to or how it came to replace Christianity, particularly in America, where the vice president is a Christian radical.

      “…states that were part of the Empire, Hungary, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, that have the moral courage to say no to the EU’s refugee quotas.”

      Is it moral to refuse refugees? Apparently so. But, is it Christian to refuse refugees? And if not, what accounts for this un-Christian behavior?

    5. Cato,

      (1) “so I did not think my distaste of monarchy would be surprising.”

      Let’s not be parochial. Political systems are not so easily categorized as good and bad. See a list of current monarchies. Many nations in the British Commonwealth (e.g., Canada, Australia). Belgium, Denmark, Japan, Holland, Norway, Spain, and Sweden. Most seem to be doing OK. Few probably want lessons in politics from America.

      The US system — one person as both chief executive AND head of state — is nuts. It promotes megalomania in the ruler, and a subservient attitude in ministers and citizens. Which is why so few nations have followed our example since 1776. They choose either a monarch or elected head of state. IMO both are superior options.

      (2) “I have a distaste for Empire as well.”

      The European empires fell as a result of WWI. Since you are unlikely to be sent back in time, that hardly matters. The Austro-H empire had parlimnets by the mid-19th century, and was following the course of other european nations to develop more modern political systems. Which is Lind’s point. WWI disrupted this “natural” evolution. The cost of both the war and the subsequent events were high (I include WWII as one such event).

      (3) “Referring back to cultural Marxism”

      That’s has a trivial mention in this essay, less than peripheral to his central message — which the commenters here refuse to see, let along grapple with. That’s the interesting aspect of this thread.

      (4) “Is it moral to refuse refugees? Apparently so.”

      Since we can’t take them all, and the social disruption of accepting large numbers is severe (as Europe is slowly learning), the answer is pretty obviously yes. Much of what is written about immigration is propaganda. Most obviously, open borders were increasingly unpopular in America after the western frontier was “closed” (i.e., ended). While our elites — then as now — welcomed large inflows for their depressing effect on wages, public opinion force a series of restrictive measures from the first in 1882 until FDR not only closed the borders but ejected many (e.g., the Mexican “Repatriation”). This allowed the growth of a large middle class. When the borders were opened again in the 1970s, the Middle Class began to shrink (a welcome development for our elites). See details here.

      (5) “But, is it Christian to refuse refugees?”

      Since He doesn’t answer questions, and Gospels make little sense, we don’t know. This bottom line has been said in many way, such as this by G.K. Chesterton — in What’s Wrong with the World (1910).

      “The Christian ideal has not been tried and found wanting. It has been found difficult; and left untried.”

      In any case, advocating public policy measures by citing Christ has been declared illegitimate by the Left — and our Good and Wise — for a generation or two. Perhaps we should shelve open borders until after abortion is banned, for which the Scriptural instructions are much clearer. And we after we have sorted out the meaning of “Thou shall not kill.” (Note to God: next time please provide more detailed operating instructions.)

    6. Further: “Economically, the Russian people might enjoy the same standard of living Americans have today, while still residing under a Christian monarch”

      For my generation we have lower standards of living and perhaps even life expectancies. My standard of living is coping with the decline.

    7. Cato

      “For my generation we have lower standards of living”

      Lower than what? Real median household incomes fluctuate (nothing is linear in these matters). The only cohort that has suffered is the 45-54 year old group, whose incomes are rising fast but are still slightly below the roughly 1996-2002 peak. See the data here.

      “perhaps even life expectancies.”

      That is, I believe (from memory) mostly from drug use. Don’t use illegal drugs and you’ll enjoy rising life expectancy.

  6. Ok, the idea that the Soviet archives substantiated 20-60 million excess Soviet deaths is absurd. They showed that Western Cold War ‘estimates’ were vastly exaggerated.

    Imperial Russia had a problem, similar to Argentina, in that she was mainly an exporter of agricultural commodities, and when agricultural prices collapsed in the 1920s, Argentina fell rapidly from the ranks of high-income countries. Without the crash Soviet industrialization program, the same fate may well have befallen Imperial Russia.

    http://eh.net/book_reviews/farm-to-factory-a-reinterpretation-of-the-soviet-industrial-revolution/

    1. Lind felt the need to mention ‘cultural marxism’ in the post above so it seems pretty relevant to me. He explicitly connects that ‘theory’ (to put it charitably) to what he discusses in the post when he says:

      “Instead of cultural Marxism, we could still have Christian, conservative monarchy as the West’s leading paradigm”

      Why would you post this article and then get upset when people discuss it? Is Lind (of all people) above criticism in your eyes?

    2. Timmy,

      Certainly a discussion of the post, and the term “cultural marxism” (which is mentioned once, in a perifferal manner) is valid. I objected to your comment because it was ad hominem. That’s just chaff. If you have a valid objection to the facts or logic in the post, state them. If you don’t like the author, nobody cares.

      Let’s replay your comment:

      “Yeah he’s vile. He’s well known for his theory of ‘cultural marxism’ which is basically a repackaging of the Nazi concept of ‘cultural Bolshevism’ so I guess it’s not particularly surprising that the man has a lot of other ugly beliefs.”

      Yep, pure ad hominem. You don’t like him, so you cover your ears and say “YA YA YA” as rebuttal.

      Also daft is the “it’s like what Nazis did, so it’s bad.” Nazi Germany became so powerful because of their innovations in addition to gas chambers & industrial-level genocide. They were a breakthrough State in many ways, which is one reason Godwin’s Law works — their deeds pop up frequently when discussing many things, good or evil. See a few examples here.

    3. rkka,

      (1) “Ok, the idea that the Soviet archives substantiated 20-60 million excess Soviet deaths is absurd.”

      It’s not “absurd” because there are many experts whose estimates are in the 20-60 million range. Since the Pope hasn’t heard from Heaven about this, the wide range is reasonable. The more precise answer is “we don’t know.” The precise Nazi accounting of their killing is rare in history. Soviet archives are unreliable. Attributing deaths to natural causes (weather) or government action (failure to respond to the weather) is subjective. Many or most of the people doing the research either have strong biases or are working to prove ideological-driven beliefs.

      For some sources discussing this see these articles, which cite different estimates.

      (a) How Many People Did Joseph Stalin Kill?” by Palash Ghosh in the IBT.

      (b) See the links cited in the Wikipedia aticles about this (Wiki itself is unreliable; the links are a useful starting point for research): Number of deaths in the Soviet Union under Joseph Stalin, Mass killings in the Soviet Union.

      (2) “Imperial Russia had a problem, similar to Argentina, in that she was mainly an exporter of agricultural commodities, and when agricultural prices collapsed in the 1920s, Argentina fell rapidly from the ranks of high-income countries.”

      I don’t believe that is a valid analogy.

      (a) 1920’s Argentina was a rich nation sustained by experts (“rich as an Argentinian”). In the 1920’s Russia/USSR was a poor nation (having lost ground to the West during WWI and the Revolution) and exported only 10% of its agricultural product (mostly wheat) — and was accordingly less dependent on imports (it was somewhat autarkic). The crash in ag prices would have had a much smaller effect.

      (b) During 1885-1913, Russia was rapidly industrializing — from a very low base. It’s progress was similar to that of Japan. Without WWI and the Revolution, continued improvements in farm productivity (importing modern methods) and reallocation of resources from ag to industry could easily have boosted growth thru 1940.

      As it was, Russian GDP recovered to 1914 levels in roughly 1928! Strong growth resumed in the late 1920s — and caught up with Tsarist-era trends in the late 1930s (again, very roughly).

      For a good intro to this, see “Was Stalin Necessary for Russiaís Economic Development?” by Anton Cheremukhin, Mikhail Golosov, Sergei Guriev, and Aleh Tsyvinski (January 2013).

    4. Thanks for that illuminating “at least the trains ran on time” waffling. Nazi Germany lasted about 12 years – not exactly a ringing endorsement of the system (why does that fact never register with the uh, let’s call them autobahn enthusiasts?). Besides, bringing up something like the autobahn is like saying the Soviet Union invented satellites – it’s a deflection.

      As for the post itself, it’s ahistorical nonsense. Since Lind can’t admit a materialist reading of history (for obvious ideological reasons) he has to resort to this Great Man Theory fantasy in which the archduke somehow saves Europe from WWI. To actually take this counterfactual seriously, you have to ignore pretty much all of European history up to that point in which the various monarchies were constantly at war with each other when not conquering and warring in foreign lands. Good counterfactuals can make you think about history in a new way, this ones just the desperate fantasy of a fanatic.

      P.S. Please look up ‘ad hominem’. Calling someone’s race-baiting conspiracy theory ‘vile’ and correctly comparing it to other conspiracy theories that aim to dehumanize political opponents isn’t the definition.

    5. Timmy,

      (1) You seem to be confused. Let’s replay the tape.

      I said “Nazi Germany became so powerful because of their innovations in addition to gas chambers & industrial-level genocide. They were a breakthrough State in many ways …”

      You say that is “not exactly a ringing endorsement of the system”. Yes, “gas chambers and industrial-level genocide” are not endorsements. Also, that a State produces some breakthroughs does not mean its dysfunctional aspects won’t sink it (e.g., an evil and mad leader).

      (2) “resort to this Great Man Theory fantasy”

      Belief that avoiding the Duke’s assassination in Summer 1914 would avoid WWI does not require belief in “Great Men” and is a commonplace among historians. For example, see Archduke Franz Ferdinand Lives! by Richard Ned Lebow (Professor at Kings College, Prof emeritus at Dartmouth) — see a review here. Also see the results of a Conference about this at the Diplomatic Academy in Vienna.

      See “If Franz Ferdinand Had Lived“, an op-ed by Simon Winder in the NYT. Lots more like that.

      (3) “actually take this counterfactual seriously, you have to ignore pretty much all of European history up to that point in which the various monarchies were constantly at war with each other”

      The period July 1815 – June 1914 was the “long peace” in western Europe, with unusually few wars between States — and most of those were brief (e.g., the wars of German unification, the Franco-Prussian War).

      (4) “Calling someone’s race-baiting conspiracy theory ‘vile’ ”

      Let’s replay the tape. You said “Yeah he’s vile.” “He” is a personal pronoun referring to Lind — not his theory.

      (5) Thanks for commenting. But your comment is too inaccurate — misrepresenting even your own words — for this website. Goodbye.

  7. As an American who has been resident in this country for more than 82 years, this post certainly mirrors my own strong belief that that the beginning of WWI and the war that followed was the beginning of the destruction of the most incredible civilization and people of all time: Western civilization and the white race.

    The tide of history seems to be turning to China, which will be the dominant civilization for the foreseeable future. To those of us who love the incredible advancements of Western civilization and the white race: the highest possible achievements in art, sculpture, literature, drama, music, science, technology, production of good and services; high levels of living standards and justice for all citizens.

    The destruction of the West is a terrible tragedy for all mankind. This is the beginning of a second dark age, perhaps worse than that of ancient Rome and Greece.

    1. Harrision,

      You might be right. Who can reliably predict such things?

      But I doubt that the US is in decline, or that China is becoming the dominant civilization. Who is adopting aspects of China’s civilization? While western civilization continues to spread around the world.

      But the US republic seems to be heading for hard times. But US power might still increase. Rome expanded for centuries after the fall of the Republic.

    2. Certainly, there is always the possibility of a new Renaissance. Also no doubt that China is adopting Western culture, science, and industry.

    3. Harrison,

      “there is always the possibility of a new Renaissance.”

      Yes, but that’s not my point. There is little evidence of the magnitude of the collapse you predict. I’ve read countless such predictions of doom for 40 years; all have proven false. That suggests that the “doomster” perspective — so attractive to those on both the Left and the Right — is the phenomenon to study, not their predictions of every kind of doom. See my posts about this.

    4. Harrison — follow-up

      There is evidence that US economic growth is accelerating. This is usually the most powerful factor influencing elections. Strong growth in the months before November — especially after 2 years of Democrats predicting the End Times from Trump’s election — will put the wind into the GOP’s sails. No matter what the WaPo, NYT, and the Dem’s other allies say.

  8. I have a friend who has published on the history of WWI, and it is quite complex. I also don’t see the Archduke as the “main cause” of the war (his death). The causes were so many and the forces aligned, I do think some kind of war was inevitable. How sure am I of that? I don’t know, about 70%?., from what I know.

    I am also grateful for modern life and understand that most of the history we know is about the “exceptional/great man theory/wealthy” of any given age. I am not sure the wonderful education and elite lives of the monarchs back then would have changed much about modern life. The benefits of a more widespread education and even economic system of “benefits” have given us what we have today.

    It (“quality of life” for the average joe) might be regressing as a whole in the past decade or two. It’s hard to tell. If you look at the whole world- things are probably continuing to get significantly better, even as the developed world gripes about low single digit GDP growth.

    Thanks for the post.

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