After every major pandemic, there is social unrest…
“So when our Sickness, and our Poverty Had greater wants than we could well supply; Strict Orders did but more enrage our grief, And hinder in accomplishing relief.”
That’s how the British poet George Wither explained a spreading rebellion against social-distancing rules. Seeing quarantines and lockdowns as unfair and tyrannical punishments, people were taking to the streets. The year was 1625, the place was London, the disease was plague.
…The peasant revolt in the 1300s, the civil unrest in the 1600s and the civil disobedience in the 1900s. The strict measures required to snuff out pandemics always makes the lives of the poorest unliveable, we haven’t seen the economic whiplash of Covid yet, especially amongst small business owners and those who were already vulnerable.
The desperate and newly desperate will swell globally and cause enormous cultural friction.
These waves of social disruption will reverberate around a rapidly warming planet. Here are some offerings on predictions for next year.
Trump & Georgia – All eyes will still be on Trump all January as the final days in the Bunker start to play out for him. Is Trump a craven coward who is pulling one last scam to shake down his followers for hundreds of millions or is he really a full blown sociopath who will launch a military strike against China or Iran? If the Dems can win Georgia they finally take control of the Senate and they will have actual power, the Corporations will not like that.
China – Their Wolf Diplomacy to whip up nationalistic fervour is masking a fear of internal revolt. Expect China to violently take Hong Kong, sabre rattle over Taiwan and threaten anyone in the West who says otherwise to send a domestic and international message of brutal strength.
Covid – It will continue to disrupt enormously. The issues of rolling out this vaccine to everyone will be a huge challenge that will need to become an annual ritual requiring 75% to gain herd immunity. The logistics of that are huge and we will be lucky to reach 75% globally by the end of 2022, so the economic damage won’t really start healing for another 2 years.
Putinless Russia? Recent rumours of his demise were apparently over stated but a Putinless Russia would create an enormous power vacuum at a time of high instability.
Climate Crisis & Social Unrest – The economic stresses of Covid alongside more climate extremes will see a wave of famines in 2021.
There will be pressures caused by mass migration into Western countries who will already be grappling with intense social economic frictions, expect one of Biden’s first challenges to be a wave of climate refugees crossing the Southern Border.
The venal excesses of Wall Street Billionaires and their never ending wealth gains will cause enormous social distortions and lead to economic radicalisation.
Social Media disinformation will continue to polarise debate and create alternate realities.
Unemployment, poverty, homelessness and inequality to rise – We are expecting 70 000 more people on welfare, joblessness to spike and with those pressures, homelessness will rise as inequality deepens. 22 000 are on social housing waiting lists, 1 in 5 children are in poverty and property speculators are driving generations out of home ownership.
Crime Wave – The 501s now have their supply chains for South American Cartel meth established alongside a stand over regime on the domestic gangs. Expect more brain haemorrhages as older meth users smoke purer and cheaper meth and an explosion of violent crime aimed against Dairies and Bottle Stores as desperate users try to rob for cash. Guns are pouring into the country because of the meth trade. This alongside the economic fall out of the pandemic will see a crime wave across the country which will give National their first chance to play the law and order card. There is also growing extremism from prisoners who have served long sentences without any rehabilitation.
Ihumātao whiplash – The deal at Ihumātao is going to spark a serious of similar occupations around the country as other Māori rise up against unjust previous agreements.
Free Speech implosion – The Hate Speech legislation has the potential of igniting a debate the Left aren’t ready to argue convincingly. The backlash by the woke in social media feeds will have people fearing less for minorities exposed to hate speech and fear more being accused of hate speech.
Radicalisation & Polarisation – With all the economic stresses and ease of disinformation, expect radicalisation and polarisation to build, not dissipate.
Climate Crisis – We will face droughts, cyclones, forest fires and extreme rainfall events. The damages will mount alarmingly. Labour and the Greens will push for recommendations early in the year for emission cut backs and the Agricultural Lobby will faint at any mention of methane inclusion. Water reforms will keep David Parker too busy to do anything else.
Labour & Jacinda – Jacinda will increasingly be called on by global partners to front and lead more geopolitical fronts. Labour’s Caucus will baulk at the lack of actual transformative change and start to agitate for far more than Grant wants to pay for.
National – Will continue to wander for 40 days and 40 nights in the desert. Judith will use the crime wave to promise public floggings, but National are too deeply dysfunctional to offer a credible alternative.
Greens – Will increasingly look like they are propping up mediocrity and tepid nothingness. Won’t be able to help themselves over the Hate Speech legislation. Members will get increasingly frustrated by the lack of anything meaningful.
ACT – Will manipulate the Free Speech debate and continue to cannibalise National vote. Will crack 10%.
Māori Party – Have so many targets to shoot at, will continue to hold the Government’s feet to the fire.
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