The Economist has a series of articles pondering whether the economic crisis will lead to instability across Europe. The answer, inevitably, is yes. It has been well reported that Greece has already been rocked by riots. But did you know Iceland has been the site of large protests against the government, too? Perhaps the next place we should worry about is China. Already home to hundreds of protests against economic and political conditions every year, the Chinese economy has slowed below the target that the government believes is required for stability. In fact, some observers think that on a seasonally adjusted basis, there was no growth in the fourth quarter.
What may become difficult is disentangling which protests are fundamentally about economic conditions and which have other causes. Does a riot about overzealous police really have its root in economic factors? Do bad economic conditions lower the threshold required before a protest becomes appealing? Which of these would happen without the economy the way it is?
Update: Iceland loses.
Update the second: Eastern Europe losing.