A couple years ago I wrote about a possible information age collapse similar to the late bronze age one. At the time, I said I didn’t expect such a collapse to actually happen. I’m less certain of that now.
I now have a fair notion what Stage Three (as enumerated in the previous post) will be, should the collapse really happen. Anyone reading this around the time it was written will have guessed already. Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is already touching off massive shockwaves through the world economy and international politics. Sanctions against Russia have been swift and far reaching and the impact of them has been likewise. I’m not going to delve into the details about why the impact of the sanctions is going to be felt very keenly among NATO members and allies, but they will, and more strongly as the war in Ukraine drags on. These sanctions have largely cut Russia off from the western markets which is pushing them into closer relations with China, both economically and politically. It seems likely an alliance will form there. It wouldn’t be a stretch for China to be emboldened by such a powerful ally as Russia and finally make a play for Taiwan.
All of this makes the extremely globalized economy even more problematic than it has been over the past couple of years as container transport has bottlenecked at major container ports causing extreme complications for the extended supply chain that relies on shipping bits and bobs from pillar to post and back again at ever stage.
I do still think Stage Four will be the coming demographic reckoning since that is nowhere near as far off as it might seem. That reckoning will hit China particularly hard, but it won’t be limited to them.
Even with all that, I still haven’t been completely swayed toward the idea that a systems collapse is underway. Ask me again in a few months after more of the fallout from the war in Ukraine is known and my opinion may have changed. At the moment, there are still too many unknowns.