By Chuck Thompson | Excerpted from the November 2015 Socionomist
Two starkly different social mood trends are now unfolding around the world: North America enjoys a mostly positive mood, even as negative mood dominates the Middle East, North and South Korea, Russia and much of Europe.
In this timely article, socionomist Chuck Thompson outlines twelve notable social expressions of these contrasting mood trends.
You can read about several of them below.
In Multiple Nations, Negative Mood Drives Belligerence, Scandal and Aggression
Negative mood is spilling over national boundaries, bringing war, terrorism and an influx of refugees to neighboring countries and beyond.
Saudi Executions Rise
A November 10 Vice News headline reads: “Saudi Arabia’s New King Likes Beheading People Even More Than His Predecessor.” King Salman took over leadership of the nation in January, and under his watch, Saudi Arabia has executed at least 151 people—far more than in recent years, when the number of executions rarely exceeded 90. Saudi Arabia’s negative mood is reflected in its Tadawul All Share Index, which has been in a bear market since 2006.
Europe Hosts Another Scandal, this Time in the Church
Europe is becoming a hotbed of scandals, where the Euro Stoxx 50 is down 36% from its 2000 all-time high. Last month’s issue detailed a scandal involving the suspensions of top officials of FIFA, the International Federation of Association Football.
This month, the Vatican is the focus of scandal after the release of books by two Italian journalists. Revelations in the books are based on stolen documents, and two members of a financial reform commission appointed by Pope Francis in 2013 have been arrested as part of an investigation into the theft.
Merchants in the Temple alleges that the Vatican is a “black hole” where millions of euros disappear as a result of waste and mismanagement. Another book, Avarice, alleges that €378,000 that churches gave in 2013 to help the poor went into a secret account for Vatican expenses instead.
November also brought the release of the film Spotlight, about Boston Globe journalists who uncovered sexual abuse of children by priests in Massachusetts and an attempted cover-up by the Boston Archdiocese.
In a November 8 speech in St. Peter’s Square, Pope Francis said he plans to continue his effort to financially reform the Vatican bureaucracy.
…In the US, Positive Mood Drives Optimism, Agreement
While much of the world is caught in the throes of negative social mood, mood in the US remains elevated. …
Americans Excited Again about Humans’ Future in Space
In the March 2003 issue of The Elliott Wave Financial Forecast, Steve Hochberg and Pete Kendall noted that the US space program began during a major trend in positive social mood. The late 1990s brought a “renewed sense of excitement to space exploration” that focused on social manifestations of the technology mania. These included euphoria over the Mars landing, John Glenn’s return to orbit and the first tourists in space. Americans’ fascination with science fiction “reflected a deep collective faith that technology would lead us to a cyber-utopia of robot butlers serving virtual Mai Tais.”
Today, the continuing strength of the long-term positive mood trend is contributing to the stellar success of The Martian, which has earned $215 million at the US box office.
The Wall Street Journal noted that the film “turns on the solving of problems” and that its lead character displays a “kind of courage that knows no planetary bounds.” Variety magazine said that in the Oscar race for best picture, The Martian has “taken off like a rocket” among the predictions by media experts and is now in second place. And The New York Times called the film the “most optimistic” of director Ridley Scott’s space movies. It described the film as “unambiguously on the side of science and rationalism with glints of manifest destiny, American can-do-ism and a little flag-waving folded in.” The Martian is a full-fledged positive-mood film that plays…
Continue reading this 5-page article to discover how these two very different mood trends are driving other social events across the globe — including chemical weapons use in the Middle East, the refugee crisis in Europe and pot legalization in the United States.
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