The Boom/Bust Cycle is Evolutionary not Economic
The cycle begins with poverty. The requirements for survival are scarce and people perish from starvation, disease or exposure to the elements. This could happen after an ice age or an economic contraction. It is a perfect evolutionary scenario. Only the most fit survive and reproduce. This is true also of culture. Wrong-headed ideas have led to people dying, and those ideas have consequently been abandoned by those surviving.
People are very much in touch with reality.
The next step is economic growth, almost certainly according to the Adam Smith model. People learn to cooperate, trade and complement each other’s skills. Action (labor) becomes more productive, and prosperity is generated. Culture thrives and begins to insulate people from objective reality. Governments are formed and people become ‘altruistic,’ meaning that they are happy to give other people’s wealth to support those who would otherwise be unable to survive. This egalitarianism extends to culture where all ideas are deemed equally worthy. Since the non-fit are not allowed to perish, the reproductive channels of both genes and cultural information become filled with reproductive trash. This is not an ideal evolutionary scenario.
People have lost touch with reality.
As altruism and egalitarianism take hold, action becomes less productive, and prosperity is reduced. Because of the fragility of the productive system, the decline is usually catastrophic. Bubbles burst; markets crash; revolutions arise; terrorism abounds. After a while there are fewer people and less culture and more contact with reality. The cycle begins anew.
In order to break the cycle, the emerging culture must recognize the nature of the cycle. The true principles of evolution and economics have to have been recognized and preserved.
That is the purpose of this book.