The saying "the worm has turned" refers to the moment when the downtrodden have finally had enough, and turn on their powerful oppressors.
The worms have finally turned against the privileged elites — who have benefited so greatly from globalization, corruption, central bank stimulus and the profiteering of state-enforced cartels. It doesn't matter as much as the punditry assumes whether they are turning Left or Right; the important thing is that the powerless have finally started challenging their privileged overlords.
Though the Powers That Be will attempt to placate or suppress the Revolt of the Powerless, the genies of political disunity and social disorder cannot be put back in the bottle. It took a generation of rising inequality, corruption and the erosion of opportunity to create a society of the protected (the haves) and the unprotected(the have-nots), and rubber-stamping more regulations and distributing Universal Basic Income (UBI) will not rebalance a system that is irrevocably out of balance.
But the rise of resistance, as yet nascent, is only half the story: economic trends and cycles are turning as well, and even if the worms remain passively underground, these reversals will disrupt the status quo. The dominant narrative–the rightness, goodness and sustainability of endless growth of consumption and debt–will unravel, and the internal contradictions of this New Gilded Age (widening wealth/income/power inequality) will finally burst through the thin façade of stability that's been patched together over the past nine years of "recovery."
Eight Key Trends/Cycles Are Turning
Here's the thing about trends and cycles: when they inevitably lose altitude or reverse, we rush around trying to identify the cause. All sorts of theories are put forth, but as a general rule, it rarely boils down to one dynamic.
Consider the decline and fall of the Western Roman Empire. Efforts to identify the cause go back hundreds of years, and include everything from barbarian invasions to the use of lead pipes to deliver water.
A new book, , pins a significant part of the responsibility on climate change and pandemic diseases—system-wide dynamics that slowly sapped Rome's vigor, food supplies, capital and labor force. Not only that, but cooling weather patterns in Eurasia may have been behind the westward movement of the mobile tribes (the Huns and Mongolians) that pushed existing tribes on Rome's borders into Roman territories—the so-called Barbarian Invasions.