I've written before about the future, but now I've had the benefit of reading The Great Disruption by Paul Gilding. I have some very mixed feelings about the book, but it does give some valuable food for thought.
First, he looks at the interrelationship between global ecology and business. According to Gilding, the Crash 0f 2008 was caused in part by environmental failure, as reflected both by the prices of oil and agricultural commodities. Development of Third World economies through multinatioinal lending contributed to financialization and banking collapse.
More importantly, he gives us an educated timeline as to when global warming will really kick in -- posing a massive and recognizable threat to everyone that the human species would eventually be subjected to a 90%+ die off if no drastic action is taken. According to climate specialists' educated guesses, 2018 will be a likely date for a global wake-up call requiring a World War II effort to ameliorate CO2 emissions.
When we couple this with economic cycle theory, we get specific dates -- and this is what the following predictions are based on among other things. As such, this could be considered a refinement of my June 11, 2011 blog entitled The Shape of Things to Come (Parts I-IV).
2012 Horrible year economically with EU crisis, China crisis, and US gridlock. Romney elected POTUS.
2013 The global economy and stock markets explode upward. The European Union finds some resolution to its problems. China stabilizes. The US government is under total GOP control.
2014 By now, or earlier, Israel bombs Iran because of a sympathetic United States government. Oil goes to $200+ a barrel. That's $8 a gallon gasoline to you. Inflation intensifies. Occupy Wall Street and the Tea Party begin to join forces.
2015 The next leg of a depression starts late in the year. Massive demonstrations and civil unrest convulse the USA and the world, partly caused by rapidly worsening weather and climate change. By now, it's obvious that the world is at peak oil. Even in the economic downturn, oil is still at $200/barrel.
2016 Romney is a one term president. He is defeated by Al Franken. It's a Democratic landslide. Chaos all over the world because of floods, droughts, hurricanes, massive wildfires, massive migrations, human megadisaster in Bangledesh
2017 New New Deal programs start. Massive demobilization of military takes place, while remaining forces are used to fight climate disasters. US undertakes major economic reconversion to an environmental-industrial complex from the current system. Large scale unrest in Africa, Asia, and Latin America as a collapse of human civilization becomes more of a reality.
2018 Global co-ordination between US, European Union, China, and Russia to remove CO2 from atmosphere in a World War II like effort. All oil companies nationalized and severe gas and electricity rationing takes place for war production.
2023 The battle is halfway successful with continued struggle and disruption until possibly 210o, or
2028 Massive dieoff of humanity due to global warming begins in earnest. Within ten years, world population will be 500,000,000 or less as compared to peak of 9 billion.