Social Mood Conference  |  Socionomics Foundation
By Alan Hall | Excerpted from the February 2012 Socionomist

Originally published under the title “Touch Displays Society’s Growing Fascination with Patterns of Social Behavior”


[Ed: Pop culture is reflecting a growing fascination with the patterns of social behavior.

[The Fox television series Touch, for example, which premiered on January 12, 2012, slakes a popular thirst for anticipating the future based on the mathematical patterns displayed in events of the past and present. In this February 2012 report, socionomist Alan Hall provides an explanation for this interest: When social mood is negative, people tend to embrace the idea that cycles of collective behavior exist and that patterns have power over most or all of history.

[Read on for an excerpt of Hall’s article.]

In Touch, Kiefer Sutherland, former tough-guy hero of “24,” plays a man whose highly autistic and mute son, Jake, can predict the future because he sees “patterns, mathematical in design, hidden in plain sight.”

The show’s trailer is replete with images of spirals and growth patterns.1 A few of the narrator’s quotes flirt with Elliott Wave theory:

  • “What if our lives are part of a pattern?”
  • “The universe is made up of precise ratios and patterns where everything and everyone is connected.”
  • A Touch character, an expert on children who have special abilities with numbers, tells Jake’s dad, “Your son sees everything; the past, the present, the future. He sees how it is all connected.”
Touch Displays Society’s Growing Fascination with Patterns of Social Behavior

Part of a Pattern: Touch’s Jake sees all. [Courtesy Fox TV]

We’re seeing pattern awareness emerge in dominant financial and economic theories as well. The Efficient Market Hypothesis (EMH) and the Random Walk theory are facing serious challenges after 40 years of dominance.  EMH and Random Walk hold that people make financial decisions rationally and objectively based upon available information, producing random, non-patterned price movement. Another theory, behavioral finance (BF), is gaining ground. BF moves to the middle ground between the rational, random markets posited by EMH, and the non-rational, patterned markets described by socionomic theory. BF recognizes that people at least sometimes make financial decisions non-rationally and subjectively because of cognitive biases. This allows for non-random, patterned price movement. BF, in turn, is a beneficial step toward socionomic theory. …

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In the remainder of this conside two-page article, author Alan Hall explains why ideas about patterns and cycles of collective behavior are becoming more popular now.

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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, www.socionomics.net. 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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