Social Mood Conference  |  Socionomics Foundation
This essay originally appeared in The Socionomist in June 2009.

You are invited to read the April 2008 Elliott Wave Theorist report, “Elliott Waves Regulate Commodity Prices and Expressions of Environmentalism,” by Alan Hall (free sign-up required) which demonstrated that pro-environmental legislation accompanies commodity bull markets, while commodity bear markets bring environmental accidents and setbacks for the green movement. The report forecast a major top in commodity prices and said, “On October 12, 2007, Al Gore won the Nobel Prize, probably marking the peak of the GW [global warming] movement.”

From its July 2008 all-time-high, the Continuous Commodity Index fell 47 percent and remains about 32 percent below its peak. The following timeline of headlines documents the subsequent environmental accidents and waning desire to save the environment:

Global Warming as Mass Neurosis

—Wall Street Journal, July 1, 2008

Financial crisis tests industry’s green priorities

“Industry has seized on the slowdown to lobby for delayed or watered down regulations….This crisis changes priorities….”

—Financial Times, October 6, 2008

European Nations Seek to Revise Agreement on Emissions Cuts

—New York Times, October 17, 2008

EU agency warns about damage from biofuels

“…may cause adverse effects on the environment….”

—European Voice, November 13, 2008

In bad economy, boat owners abandon their vessels

“Oil, gasoline and sewage from these boats leak into the aquatic environment.”

—AP, November 13, 2008

Tennessee Ash Flood Larger Than Initial Estimate

“…largest environmental disaster of its kind in the United States.” Two weeks after the CCI low.

—New York Times, December 27, 2008

Dark Days for Green Energy

“Installation of wind and solar power is plummeting.”

—New York Times, February 4, 2009

Ethanol, Just Recently a Savior, Is Struggling

“Plants are shutting down virtually every week.”

—New York Times, February 12, 2009

Is global warming passé?

—MarketWatch, February 27, 2009

Increased Number Think Global Warming Is “Exaggerated”

“…record high 41 percent … the highest level in a decade…. [global warming] urgency has stalled.”

—Gallup, March 11, 2009

Tonnes of oil blanket Queensland beaches

“…turned the sand black ‘as far as the eye can see.’”

—ABC, March 12, 2009

The Ethanol Bubble Pops in Iowa

“…a business model built on fantasies….”

—Wall Street Journal, April 18, 2009

Seeking to Save the Planet, With a Thesaurus

“…oil companies, utilities and coal mining concerns… are trying to ‘green’ their images…. global warming [is] last among 20 voter concerns.”

—New York Times, May 2, 2009

Sarkozy in Climate Row Over Reshuffle

“Sarkozy’s desire to appoint an outspoken climate-change sceptic… [is a] terribly bad signal…. tantamount to giving the finger to scientists…. like putting organic farming alongside Chernobyl.”

—May 27, 2009 Financial Times

In History’s Hidden Engine, Robert Prechter describes how the media and entertainment strive to give the public “what they want, when they want it.” ABC has done that with the release of the new animated comedy series, The Goode Family. The May 22 Wall Street Journal article, “Making a Mockery of Being Green,” says the show ridicules a “clan of environmentalists who live by the words ‘What would Al Gore do?’”

Che, the murderous vegan dog, chasing a squirrel
(Still image from video clip, courtesy ABC)

The star of the show may well be the Goode’s comically ravenous vegan dog, Che, who both parodies the green movement and mirrors its frustration.

Fear of shortages drives rising commodity prices and, at large degree, generates social visions of peak oil and “running out of planet.” A completely different social dynamic drives commodity bear markets. In addition, today’s dynamic is complicated by a historically rare, deflationary, positive correlation between stock and commodity prices, a subject for a future issue of The Socionomist.■

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Socionomics InstituteThe Socionomist is a monthly online magazine designed to help readers see and capitalize on the waves of social mood that contantly occur throughout the world. It is published by the Socionomics Institute, Robert R. Prechter, president; Matt Lampert, editor-in-chief; Alyssa Hayden, editor; Alan Hall and Chuck Thompson, staff writers; Dave Allman and Pete Kendall, editorial direction; Chuck Thompson, production; Ben Hall, proofreader.

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Most economists, historians and sociologists presume that events determine society’s mood. But socionomics hypothesizes the opposite: that social mood regulates the character of social events. The events of history—such as investment booms and busts, political events, macroeconomic trends and even peace and war—are the products of a naturally occurring pattern of social-mood fluctuation. Such events, therefore, are not randomly distributed, as is commonly believed, but are in fact probabilistically predictable. Socionomics also posits that the stock market is the best available meter of a society’s aggregate mood, that news is irrelevant to social mood, and that financial and economic decision-making are fundamentally different in that financial decisions are motivated by the herding impulse while economic choices are guided by supply and demand. For more information about socionomic theory, see (1) the text, The Wave Principle of Human Social Behavior © 1999, by Robert Prechter; (2) the introductory documentary History's Hidden Engine; (3) the video Toward a New Science of Social Prediction, Prechter’s 2004 speech before the London School of Economics in which he presents evidence to support his socionomic hypothesis; and (4) the Socionomics Institute’s website, At no time will the Socionomics Institute make specific recommendations about a course of action for any specific person, and at no time may a reader, caller or viewer be justified in inferring that any such advice is intended.

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