Monday, November 12, 2012

Tytler's "Fatal Sequence"

Tytler was a Scottish lawyer and author of books on history and jurisprudence. He wrote an historic study of translation theory and died in the early 1800's Here is his "fatal sequence" that democracies go through:
"A democracy cannot exist as a permanent form of government. It can only exist until the majority discovers it can vote itself largess out of the public treasury. After that, the majority always votes for the candidate promising the most benefits with the result the democracy collapses because of the loose fiscal policy ensuing, always to be followed by a dictatorship, then a monarchy."
There's another version that is less specific known as the "Tytler Sequence":
The historical cycle seems to be: From bondage to spiritual faith; from spiritual faith to courage; from courage to liberty; from liberty to abundance; from abundance to selfishness; from selfishness to apathy; from apathy to dependency; and from dependency back to bondage once more."
Here is the Strauss-Howe sequence:
Arthurian Generation (1433–1460) (H) Humanist Generation (1461–1482) (A) Reformation Generation (1483–1511) (P) Reprisal Generation (1512–1540) (N) Elizabethan Generation (1541–1565) (H) Parliamentary Generation (1566–1587) (A) Puritan Generation (1588–1617) (P) Cavalier Generation (1618–1647) (N) Glorious Generation (1648–1673) (H) Enlightenment Generation (1674–1700) (A) Awakening Generation (1701–1723) (P) Liberty Generation (1724–1741) (N) Republican Generation (1742–1766) (H) Compromise Generation (1767–1791) (A) Transcendental Generation (1792–1821) (P) Gilded Generation (1822–1842) (N) Progressive Generation (1843–1859) (A) Missionary Generation (1860–1882) (P) Lost Generation (1883–1900) (N) G.I. Generation (1901–1924) (H) Silent Generation (1925–1942) (A) Boom Generation (1943–1960) (P) Generation X (Gen X) (1961–1981) (N) Millennial Generation (Gen Y) (1982–2004) (H) Homeland Generation (2005 – ????) (A)
Last but not least is the Chinese Dynastic Cycle theory. Actually, last AND least is the quote of an Austrian professor of jurisprudence who supposedly opined: "The USA is the only country in Western Civilization which has gone from barbarism to decadence without an intervening culture." After the election last Tuesday, I don't find that so difficult to believe anymore.

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