Historical cycles

From Faster Than 20

Growing up with Disruptive Technology

Joshua Meyrowitz, No Sense of Place. Disruptive technology + 18.

TV = 1950 + 18 => 1968

Mosaic web browser => 1993 + 18 => 2011

How about things like war? Major terrorist attacks? Refugee crisis?

The Master Switch

Tim Wu, The Master Switch

Cycle between open and closed "information empires."

American Generational Cycles

William Strauss and Neil Howe, Generations: The History of America's Future, 1584 to 2069. (1992)

Every 80-90 years, America forced to recreate itself. See Sara Robinson's piece for a summary.

Presidential Party Cycles

It's very rare for presidents of one party to succeed presidents of that same party. It's even rarer when the preceding president served two terms. It's only happened twice for Democrats:

  • 1836, Martin Van Buren succeeded Andrew Jackson, who was the first Democrat to win the presidency
  • 1944, Franklin Delano Roosevelt won a third term as president. He died while in office and was succeeded by Harry S. Truman, who was re-elected and ended 20 consecutive years of Democratic presidents.

57% of Republicans candidates have won following a two-term Republican president, including:

  • Ulysses S. Grant (1868)
  • Rutherford B. Hayes (1876)
  • Theodore Roosevelt (1904)
  • George H.W. Bush (1988)

However, with the exception of Bush, it's been very rare in recent history.

On average, modern Presidents have lost 30 House seats and 4 Senate seats in their first midterm elections.