Armstrong Economics Blog
Re-Posted Jan 27, 2020 by Martin Armstrong
QUESTION: Good morning Mr. Armstrong!
Thanks for always opening our eyes! Could you please explain to me what natural phenomenon of cataclysmic proportions could alter the world and even change religion and who and how would they benefit today? What role should universities play in this scenario? What and how should we teach in classrooms to prepare our students so they can face this future?
Professor … University
ANSWER: That is a very interesting question. Historically, religion seems to go through changes that are driven by economics. However, in many instances, economics has been driven itself by often climate change that has resulted in mass migrations.
There were two major climate change periods which drove the populations from the north to invade the south. The first was the Sea People who invaded moving from Europe south into northern Africa. That was the collapse of the Bronze Age. Virtually every civilization collapsed with the exception of Egypt. The next major mass migration was the invasion of the northern tribes into the Roman Empire.
Even the migration from Europe to the United States in mass took place during the Little Ice Age. Remember, there were no income taxes. The tax burdens were indirect and property taxes. The weather, however, was very cold. Most likely the combination sent many to flee to the United States.
The Great Irish Potato famine began in 1845 and had a severe social impact for some six years which sent waves of Irish migrating to America. Ironically, those who keep claiming that the population will run out of food using the theory of Thomas Malthus, miss the entire point of what motivated him behind coming up with that theory – it was climate change and the Little Ice Age – not global warming. The environmental dangers behind Malthus and his six essays on population were published between 1798 and 1826. This was the Little Ice Age.
If we look at the fall of Rome, historians have reached a consensus that the line is drawn with the death of Marcus Aurelius in 180AD. He is followed by his son, Commodus, who is so ruthless that he was assassinated on December 31, 192AD which unleashed civil war in Rome. The Praetorian Guards were so corrupt, they put the office of Emperor up for the highest bidder after assassinating Commodus.
While the victor was Septimus Severus who began the Severan Dynasty, a member of that line was Elagabalus (218-222AD) who important his god from Syria and compelled the people to worship a black meteorite he claimed was the stone from god. He issued coins displaying the meteorite in a chariot he would parade around the city. He was assassinated in 222AD and his body was dragged through the streets.
So religion has often played a key role in events caused by economics driven often by climate change.