Wednesday, November 2, 2011
Teetering on the Brink: World to Face Years of Social Unrest As Global Economy Falters
The UN think tank has warned that the international economy is on the brink of a deep new economic crisis that could cost hundreds of millions of jobs around the globe and trigger mass social unrest, the world's most powerful nations were warned yesterday with the UN report. The report pointed to the civil unrest currently being unleashed in Greece and Spain as the unhappy citizens of those nations took to the streets, sometimes in violent clashes with local authorities, to express their angers and frustration against the hardline-imposed austerity measures the governments have been enforcing.
Similar protests have taken place in the United Kingdom, France and Portugal, as the European debt crisis continues to be of great concern, with near constant "emergency meetings" being convened to tackle the situation. The "Occupy Wall Street" movement has quickly blossomed from its origins in New York, gaining momentum and spreading to at least twenty other cities across the US. Riot police have engaged protesters in San Francisco and many politicians running for office have used the movement to try and win votes from a frustrated and angry constituency.
All of this comes after the Arab Spring Revolution, which started last winter in Egypt and quickly spread throughout the Middle East, with violent uprisings witnessed in Syria and Libya. Similar unrest has occurred in Chile and Argentina in South America, with hundreds of thousands of people taking to the streets to express their own anger over what is viewed as an ineffectual government's inability to respond to the needs of its people. The cataclysmic Japanese earthquake and tsunami earlier this year also took a devastating toll on the already ailing global economy.
The USDA issued a stark warning this week that is almost certain to add to the possibility of unrest in the future: A startling report about the rising cost of food. The agency warned that freak weather conditions have devastated food producing areas on all continents on the planet, including extreme flooding, drought, and damaging storms. The disasters have put tremendous pressure on the global food supply, which is also coupled with the continuing rise in the cost of fuel to transport needed goods. Food riots have already taken place this year in Africa and South America. With news that the world's population has reached a record high of seven billion people, the report warns that the cost of food will see a sharp increase over the next two years, estimating that prices for basic food staples could go up by as much as 4.5 percent, a shocking increase that will without a doubt put extreme pressure on people already struggling to pay their bills and support their families.