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The 50 Steps of Crisis Eras

January 10th, 2013 // 9:23 am @

Note to the Reader: I offered this list three years ago in early 2010, and since then the steps of crisis have advanced. I felt it was time to review and see where we are right now. Today I added a few words of commentary that update things since 2010—these are at the very end of this list. If you want, feel free to skip to the end and read the last paragraph before reading the list. It is amazing how closely we are following this!  —Oliver

Part I: The 50 Steps of Crisis Eras

The steps below come in the following general order during the 20-25 years of Crisis Eras in history. This pattern repeats itself every 80 years or so, with the last crisis era occurring between 1922-1945. Within the phases, steps can come in any order. Our current crisis era began on September 11, 2001.

PHASE I

The Pre-Crisis Era (Usually 7-12 Years before the Crisis)

1. Foreign war (e.g. French and Indian, Mexican-American, WWI, Gulf War)

2. Major economic boom (e.g. the roaring twenties, the dot.com nineties boom)

3. Declining morals (both sexual and charitable)

4. Escapist entertainment (novels, the Charleston, the sitcom, etc.)

5. Salesman values are the norm: tolerance, niceness, wealth, etc.

6. Two-party conflict

7. Big institutions lose popular support (e.g. British Parliament 1780s, Congress 1860s, Presidency 1920s, courts 1990s).

PHASE II

The Catalyst and Its Aftermath

8. Major catalyst event changes everything (e.g. Boston tea party, Election of Lincoln, 1929 stock market crash, 9/11).

9. Society gears up for crisis, but nothing happens yet.

10. Return to seeming normalcy, but growing fear and mistrust.

11. Gold (and in modern times steel and oil) prices soar.

12. Realist entertainment

13. Growing racial and religious intolerance

14. Business failures and buy outs

15. Increased regulation of business

16. Many foreign conflicts

17. Many government scandals

18. Widely increased stress and health problems across the nation

19. Economic downturn — looks bad but bounces back for a while

20. Entrepreneurial values begin spreading: ingenuity, self-reliance, confidence

PHASE III

The Escalating Crisis (Steps 21-28 can occur in any order and at any point before step 35, but they do occur at some point during crisis eras.)

21. Big crisis event! (war, pandemic, natural disaster, depression, etc.)

22. All society’s problems suddenly combined into 1 big problem!

23. It feels like our civilization itself is at stake (it is!)

24. Statesmen either choose pessimism, fear, worry about the future, or they choose optimism and planning for after the crisis.

25. Major economic downturn, often at depression levels.

26. Major war begins.

27. One political party takes charge (for next decade or more).

28. Leaders either hunker down and try to survive the crisis, or they study hard, research deep, start or build businesses to fund freedom, and figure out answers for when the crisis is over.

29. Emphasis off rights and on duties (draft, tax hikes, censorship of media, etc.)

30. Customized becomes Mass (fewer brands at store, one or two office pay-scales and benefits package, etc.)

31. Leaders either focus on self survival or they write, teach, publish and spread ideas of freedom for after the crisis.

32. Warrior values dominate society: courage, strength, resiliency.

33. Every family sacrifices greatly.

34. Religious observance soars.

PHASE IV

The Turnaround (This is where things take a shift toward positive!)

35. Health increases, stress and anxiety decrease.

36. Greatness returns, because there is no other choice: greatness in homes, communities, nations, business, politics.

37. Leaders either trust that the government will just handle things after the crisis or they continue studying, teaching, writing and spreading the ideas that need to be adopted when the crisis ends.

38. The splintering, complexity and cynicism of the past 40 years turns to cooperation, spirituality and optimism. Happiness increases. (e.g. the number of  people who considered themselves very happy decreased 60% from 1957 to 2007. 60%!).

39. Crisis ends! Everyone celebrates.

40. Masses go home, ignore societal progress and get back to life.

PHASE V

The Post-Crisis Era—Major Changes (Typically 0-12 Years After Crisis)

41. Leaders establish a new set of economic rules (with a mixture of regulation and free enterprise and a bias toward one of these).

42. Leaders establish a new culture (with government, corporations or family as the central institution).

43. Leaders establish a new social contract (with a mixture of government and private institutions such as schools, health care, insurance, technology, arts, etc.).

44. Leaders establish a new society (with decisions on the accepted mixtures of morals, pleasures and duties).

45. Leaders establish a new ideal view of rights (with mixtures of inalienable, civil and human rights).

46. Leaders establish a new definition of family.

47. Leaders define a new class (or classless) system.

48. Leaders establish new boundaries, allies and treaties.

49. Leaders establish new constitutional models and legal codes to embody steps 41-48 above.

[These choices can go very good for freedom, prosperity and happiness, or very poorly for these. It is up to the citizens and statesmen who influence and impact these decisions. While the decisions are made during the early post-crisis era, the leaders are prepared and the ideas promoted during the 20-25 year period of crisis.]

What’s next? Well, it could go either of two ways:

50a. If leaders are effective in their studying, learning and spreading freedom and free enterprise ideas during the crisis era, the society adopts free enterprise, family-centered culture. moral-based society, inalienable and equal civil and human rights, strong family values, no class or caste system, and a freedom-based form of constitution.

50b. If leaders aren’t effective in their studying, learning and spreading the principles of freedom during the crisis era and early post-crisis era, society adopts lots of regulation, governmental and corporate controls over the people, pleasure-based society, a loss of rights, aristocratic class systems and laws, and a force-based government.

Part II: Comments by Oliver DeMille

March, 2010

Almost a decade ago, 9/11 created event 8, and we watched events 9-13 occur during the Bush Administration. Then, since the major economic crisis and the election of President Obama we have watched events 14-18 occur.

This is happening very quickly. With the Health Care law, we will likely see 14-18 accelerate in the next couple of years before we have a chance to reverse things in a presidential election. The election will probably determine whether or not we progress quickly or slowly toward major crises.

January, 2013

We have witnessed a significant increase of events 14-18 since March 2010, and after the midterm elections of 2010 and huge gains by Republicans in the House of Representatives, we saw event 19 occur. In fact, it was strong enough that the nation re-elected President Obama in 2012.

After the election, we began witnessing event 20, partly as numerous businesses shut down to use resources in other ways or restructured in the face of increasing regulations, and also as a number of entrepreneurs saw the decline of free enterprise and got even more serious about growing their businesses—regardless of what government does.

We will see event 20 increase in 2013, and events 21-25 sometime very soon—likely before the 2016 election. Whether 21 or 25 will come first remains to be seen.

 

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Why We Need a Third Party

November 17th, 2012 // 10:36 am @

by Oliver DeMille

In the aftermath of the 2012 election, there have been numerous emails, posts, articles and blogs by business owners who say they are planning to sell or close their businesses, or just lay off enough workers that they can afford Obamacare for the employees who remain.

One summary listed the following announced layoffs—all attempts to deal with the new costs of Obamacare:

  • Welch Allyn, 275 layoffs
  • Stryker, 1170 layoffs
  • Boston Scientific, between 1200 and 1400 layoffs
  • Medtronic, 1000 layoffs
  • Smith and Nephew, 770 layoffs
  • Hill Rom, 200 layoffs
  • Kinetic Concepts, 427 layoffs
  • Coviden, 595 layoffs
  • Abbot Labs, 427 layoffs
  • St. June Medical, 300 layoffs

There are many, many others.

One email dated November 7, the day after the election, read:

“Time to sell our business. We can no longer afford to provide a living for 14 employees as soon we’re forced to pay for their healthcare. So sad, too bad. On to new ventures.”

After responses about how sad this is and others pointedly blaming the Obama Administration, the same person continued:

“We are all Americans and need to find common ground and make this country great together. I’m not mad at anyone for voting different than me. They love their president, don’t lose friends over calling him a dictator. I’m excited to sell our business. We are adventurous!”

That’s the entrepreneurial spirit that made America great.

Not: “Oh no, we’re losing our job. Will the government help us?”

But rather: “Hey, change happens. We’re excited. This is going to be an adventure!”

That’s the American spirit.

And while rumors abound about how much Obamacare will cost each small business and which won’t have to make any changes at all, there are a lot of employers right now who are very concerned.

Those with under 50 employees aren’t supposed to be hurt, but smaller employers are still worried about exactly how the new laws will be enforced.

Sadly, we will likely see a lot of change in small business in the months and years just ahead.

More regulation, higher taxes and drastically increased costs of employing people will make things more difficult.

An exception may be in network marketing companies or compensated communities.

I’ve long considered them among the top entrepreneurial opportunities in free nations, and with the current changes and policies this is even more true.

“My son is a doctor,” Marge said proudly.

“Wow,” Betty said with a concerned voice. “How is your son dealing with the new regulations coming into effect under Obamacare?” she asked.

Marge nodded and her face grew serious. “He’s very concerned, to tell the truth.”

“Fortunately, my son is building a huge network marketing company, and the regulations aren’t hurting him much,” Betty said. “Maybe your son would like to meet with mine about an opportunity?”

This kind of conversation is taking place a lot right now, and all indications are that it will increase.

Some parents are recommending that their college children put school on hold and start a network business, and I know two medical doctors who have gotten out of the profession in order to build networking businesses.

One of them talked two of his sons into quitting college and doing the same, though the three of them all ended up building networking organizations with entirely different companies.

 

II. The Party of Small Business

All of this got me thinking today, and as I pondered I realized something. Something big.

Something we really need right now in America.

We need a third party.

Actually, we need a new party that becomes more popular than the Republican Party and the Democratic Party.

There are more independents than members of either big party, so this shouldn’t be too much of a stretch.

Here’s the problem: The Democratic Party is now the unabashed party of big government, the welfare state, rule from Washington D.C., and everything that goes with these values.

The Republican Party touts itself as the party of freedom, limited government, free markets and business, but in fact it is the party of big business and a big-spending government at the same or just slightly lower levels than Democrats.

We have a party of Big Government (with big business as its co-pilot), and another party that emphasizes Big Business (with big government as its co-pilot).

The first is the Democratic Party, the second the GOP.

Neither is now effectively serving the needs of our nation.

As a result, we get bigger government regardless of who gets elected, and big business grows (to the frequent detriment of small businesses) regardless of who is in power in Washington.

In all of this, small businesses, families, communities and the middle class are the losers.

The solution? We need a party of small business.

We need a party whose top priority is the needs of families and small businesses.

This new party needs to reject the big-government and anti-free enterprise values of the Democrats and simultaneously the big-business and anti-immigrant attitudes of Republicans.

It needs to embrace toleration, diversity, reduced government regulations, lower taxes, decreased government spending, incentives for entrepreneurship, a charitable safety net, and incentives for more immigrants to bring their capital, businesses, labor and families to America.

It needs to get rid of the barriers to hiring (such as the increasing required health care costs) and drastically reduce government red tape for small businesses.

It needs to allow more innovation, shrink requirements on licenses and permits and other unnecessary costs that decrease entrepreneurship and growth, and create an environment of seamless partnerships between schools and businesses.

It needs to promote, encourage and incentive a lot more initiative, innovation and entrepreneurialism.

It also needs to push for more creative and independent thinking in the schools and less that is rote, conveyor-belt, and pre-scripted.

It should change the way schools are run, replacing an environment where administrators and bureaucrats feel comfortable to one led by proven innovators and others who have been successful in the real economy, the FOR-profit economy.

Forget teacher certification and unions—if we want to compete in the global economy we need innovators leading our classrooms.

As an example, principals and teachers should be hired who have excelled at implementing successful business plans rather than writing resumes.

And funding should flow to schools that excel in a true free market.

To ensure to that no child is left behind (for example in less-advantaged neighborhoods), even larger premiums should go to innovators who successfully turn dumpy schools into flourishing institutions whose graduates thrive.

The new party should apply similar principles to other kinds of organizations, from health care and community governments to every other sector of the economy.

Small businesses bring the large majority of growth in the economy, and the new party needs to begin with the specific needs of small businesses in mind.

It needs to identify things that hurt small business and repeal them, and find out what helps small businesses succeed and introduce more policies that encourage these things.

It needs to rewrite the commercial and legal code to create an environment where innovation is the norm, along with the values of growth, calculated risk, leadership, creativity, and entrepreneurialism.

It needs to be not the party of jobs, but the party of successful business ownership—and the jobs they naturally create.

 

III. A Bright Future?

We need a third party. The party of Big Government (with big business as co-pilot) and the party of Big Business (with big government as co-pilot) simply aren’t doing what our nation needs anymore.

It’s time for new thinking and new leadership.

There is an old saying that you can’t pour new wine into old bottles, because the residue of past wine always taints the new.

This is where we are in America.

The current parties, as much good as both have done at times, have peaked and are in decline.

New leadership is needed, along new values untainted by the baggage of two parties whose time has come and gone.

It is perhaps possible to reform one of the parties to get better results, but it is likely that only a new party with an entirely new focus and fresh thinking is going to take America where it needs to go.

Democratic nations are notorious for refusing to change until crisis forces their hand, and I suspect this is what we’ll witness in the 21st Century.

At some point, probably after major crisis and a superhuman American response, we’re going to need a new party.

Those who love freedom should start thinking about what it should look like.

One thing is clear: When it does come, it needs to be a party of small business.

Free enterprise and the entrepreneurial spirit made America great, and it will do so again if we let it.

Whatever comes in the economy, we want to be led by those whose attitude is, “It might sound bad, but this is an exciting adventure! Let’s get started…”

 

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odemille 133x195 custom Egypt, Freedom, & the Cycles of HistoryOliver DeMille is the chairman of the Center for Social Leadership and co-creator of Thomas Jefferson Education.

He is the author of A Thomas Jefferson Education: Teaching a Generation of Leaders for the 21st Century, and The Coming Aristocracy: Education & the Future of Freedom.

Oliver is dedicated to promoting freedom through leadership education. He and his wife Rachel are raising their eight children in Cedar City, Utah.

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Shakespeare Goes to School?

August 13th, 2012 // 1:41 pm @

David Brooks wondered (The New York Times, July 5, 2012), what would Shakespeare’s Henry V have become as a leader if he had attended a current typical American school?

He wouldn’t be trained to fulfill the potential of his natural leadership abilities, he’d be cited for safety violations, suspended and labeled.

Whatever the label, he’d almost certainly be herded into a specific group and kept there year after year.

Brooks wrote:

“The education system has become culturally cohesive, rewarding and encouraging a certain sort of person: one who is nurturing, collaborative, disciplined, neat, studious, industrious and ambitious.”

In short, the kind of student who would make the most zealous Tiger Mom proud, the kind student who will grow into what C.S. Lewis called “Men Without Chests” and spending their lives on what author Sandra Tsing-Loh called “high-class drone work.”

In fact, such drone work has become the most widespread new definition of success in the corporate world.

We shouldn’t be surprised with this result.

After all, our education system in the Western world are perfectly aligned with this goal:

“Achieve, but don’t stand out too much. Succeed, but don’t alienate those around you. Fit in, be a team player, don’t rock the boat, impress the adults and you’ll get accolades, scholarships, and career success.”

The fact that in the new economy such attitudes are more likely to get Johnny or Mary a pink slip than a corner office is ignored by many parents and teachers.

And the reality that entrepreneurial success has a much higher probability of propelling Tommy or Sally to a higher standard of living than his or her parents, and in fact that this is the only thing likely to do so, is virtually never taught—except by two groups, parents who are successful entrepreneurs in their own right, and parents who are successful professionals.

Many such professionals now see that the medical, legal and other historically top-earning sectors are changing in ways that will end their run as upper-middle-class bastions of upward social mobility.

 

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odemille 133x195 custom Egypt, Freedom, & the Cycles of HistoryOliver DeMille is the chairman of the Center for Social Leadership and co-creator of Thomas Jefferson Education.

He is the author of A Thomas Jefferson Education: Teaching a Generation of Leaders for the 21st Century, and The Coming Aristocracy: Education & the Future of Freedom.

Oliver is dedicated to promoting freedom through leadership education. He and his wife Rachel are raising their eight children in Cedar City, Utah.

Category : Blog &Culture &Current Events &Education &Family &Leadership

Two-Decade Teens

August 13th, 2012 // 12:24 pm @

With more and more college graduates returning home to live with their parents, many adults are becoming frustrated with the rising generation.

In the book Slouching Toward Adulthood, Sally Koslow shows how this trend is the natural result of the last two generations of parenting.

The problem is not so much the slumped economy and high unemployment, although these are realities, but the fact that using student loans to get through college is now the norm, so when students graduate they are loaded with debt and many can’t afford rent.

Even more difficult, the Boomer generation tended to bring up their children with an attitude that left little room for the lessons learned from failure.

This was mixed with a strangely controlling approach to scheduling and achievement.

As reviewer Judith Newman wrote in People  (July 9, 2012):

“Recognize that channel-surfing, chips-snacking lump on the couch? It might well be your adult child. Koslow writes wittily about the infantilization of American youth as increasing numbers treat getting a job and moving out as just an option. The solution? Stop trying to inculcate our kids against failure, for starters.”

Over six million adult children now live with their parents, pay no rent, eat without limits from their parents’ fridge, and use the house, yard, cable and computers without paying for them.

Many consider their parents an ATM.

Moreover, very few of them are out actively seeking employment.

The irony, Koslow notes, is that most of these adults were raised in a culture where they were constantly told they were special.

The result is that they value having fun with friends, want to travel extensively, and look down on working for the money to pay for their lives, hobbies and interests.

Many of the generation see themselves as free spirits, but unlike the sixties generation they want the expensive yuppie lifestyles of freeloaders.

As Diedre Donahue put it in USA Today,

“The adults aren’t helping. Koslow believes parents often infantilize their adult children because it makes parents feel needed. The result: entitled but incompetent children and exploited but enabling adults.”

As if that’s not enough, the new generation of adultescents “…crave attention and often cash from parents, whom they frequently ask to help them move from place to place; create a mess; rack up debt…”

Then, all too often, they blame their parents for their plight, anxiety, and lack of opportunity.

Of course, this doesn’t describe the entire generation, or even a majority of them, but it does accurately depict far too many.

This new adultescent trend, as Koslow calls it, doesn’t show any likelihood of slowing in the years ahead.

If anything, it will likely increase.

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odemille 133x195 custom Egypt, Freedom, & the Cycles of HistoryOliver DeMille is the chairman of the Center for Social Leadership and co-creator of Thomas Jefferson Education.

He is the author of A Thomas Jefferson Education: Teaching a Generation of Leaders for the 21st Century, and The Coming Aristocracy: Education & the Future of Freedom.

Oliver is dedicated to promoting freedom through leadership education. He and his wife Rachel are raising their eight children in Cedar City, Utah.

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The Education Event of the Summer

August 1st, 2012 // 12:09 pm @

Featuring Oliver DeMille presenting:

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To help you prepare for the coming school year, all registrants will receive the following free downloads* in addition to the webinar (all newly-produced especially for registrants of this event):

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