“A Fourth Turning Prophecy”-Part of Chapter 10 of the book

Chapter 10 – A Fourth Turning Prophecy

(pages 272-273)

Book: The Fourth Turning

“Sometime around the year 2005, perhaps a few years before or after, America will enter the Fourth Turning.


            In the middle Oh-Ohs, America will be a very different society than in the late 1920x, when the last Crisis catalyzed. The nation will be more affluent, enjoy better health, possess more technology, encompass a larger and more diverse population, and command more powerful weapons—but the same could be said about every other Unraveling era society compared to its predecessor. They were not exempt from the saeculum; nor will we be.


            A spark will ignite a new mood. Today, the same spark would flame briefly but then extinguish, its last flicker merely confirming and deepening the Unraveling-era mind-set. This time, though, it will catalyze a Crisis. In retrospect, the spark might seem as ominous as a financial crash, as ordinary as a national election, or as trivial as a Tea Party. It could be a rapid succession of small events in which the ominous, the ordinary, and the trivial are commingled.




            Recall that a Crisis catalyst involves scenarios distinctly imaginable eight or ten years in advance. Based on recent Unraveling-era trends, the following circa-2005 scenarios might seem plausible:


  • Beset by a fiscal crisis, a state lays claim to its residents’ federal tax monies. Declaring this an act of secession, the president obtains a federal injunction. …


  • A global terrorist group blows up an aircraft and announces it possesses portable nuclear weapons. The United States and its allies launch a preemptive strike. …


  • An impasse over the federal budget reaches a stalemate. The president and Congress both refuse to back down, triggering a near-total government shutdown. The president declares emergency powers. …


  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announce the spread of a new communicable virus. The disease reaches densely populated areas, killing some. …


  • Growing anarchy throughout the former Soviet republics prompts Russia to conduct training exercises around its borders. Lithuania erupts in civil war. …


It’s highly unlikely that any one of these scenarios will actually happen. What is likely, however, is that the catalyst will unfold according to a basic Crisis dynamic that underlies all of these scenarios: An initial spark will trigger a chain reaction of unyielding responses and further emergencies. The core elements of these scenarios (debt, civic decay, global disorder) will matter more than the details, which the catalyst will juxtapose and connect in some unknowable way. If foreign societies are also entering a Fourth Turning, this could accelerate the chain reaction.”


Book: The Fourth Turning: An American Prophecy


Why The US Is Headed Into Its Fourth Turning


“Heading Towards A Waterfall” – Fourth Turning Economics


Weeks Where Decades Happen


Book: The Age of Entitlement: America Since the Sixties


Book: Loserthink: How Untrained Brains Are Ruining America


The World Became Unrecognizable In Less Than A Decade


The Cost of the Enlightenment-AERC 2019 (Transcript of presentation)


The Cost of the Enlightenment-AERC 2019 (Video)


Book: From Dawn to Decadence: 500 Years of Western Cultural Life; 1500 to the Present by Barzun, Jacques