Of Layoffs & Riots…

From George Ure of Peoplenomics.com fame:

layoffs2009-02-26

Is “ugly” really the right word? And from the Asia Times we have:

A Planet at the Brink?
By Michael T Klare

The global economic meltdown has already caused bank failures, bankruptcies, plant closings, and foreclosures and will, in the coming year, leave many tens of millions unemployed across the planet. But another perilous consequence of the crash of 2008 has only recently made its appearance: increased civil unrest and ethnic strife. Someday, perhaps, war may follow.

As people lose confidence in the ability of markets and governments to solve the global crisis, they are likely to erupt into violent protests or to assault others they deem responsible for their plight, including government officials, plant managers, landlords, immigrants, and ethnic minorities.

If the present economic disaster turns into what President Barack Obama has referred to as a “lost decade”, the result could be a global landscape filled with economically-fueled upheavals.

Indeed, if you want to be grimly impressed, hang a world map on your wall and start inserting red pins where violent episodes have already occurred.
Athens (Greece),
– Longnan (China),
– Port-au-Prince (Haiti),
– Riga (Latvia),
– Santa Cruz (Bolivia),
– Sofia (Bulgaria),
– Vilnius (Lithuania), and
– Vladivostok (Russia) would be a start.

Many other cities from Reykjavik, Paris, Rome, and Zaragoza to Moscow and Dublin have witnessed huge protests over rising unemployment and falling wages that remained orderly thanks in part to the presence of vast numbers of riot police. If you inserted orange pins at these locations – none as yet in the United States – your map would already look aflame with activity. And if you’re a gambling man or woman, it’s a safe bet that this map will soon be far better populated with red and orange pins. [more

Be honest now: does anyone still think things will start getting better soon? And that “buy and hold” is a winning strategy in equities?

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