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I’ve admired Prof Bello for a long time. I’ve enjoyed stories about him tearing celebrity professors a new one(Celebrity professors/acamedics tend to be more in the communications field and tend to be less in the academic world!).But I sure hope he is wrong about this! Thanks to Angry Bear for the liunk

The Coming Fury

The sudden end of the export era is going to have some ugly consequences. In the last three decades, rapid growth reduced the number living below the poverty line in many countries. In practically all countries, however, income and wealth inequality increased. But the expansion of consumer purchasing power took much of the edge off social conflicts. Now, with the era of growth coming to an end, increasing poverty amid great inequalities will be a combustible combination.

In China, about 20 million workers have lost their jobs in the last few months, many of them heading back to the countryside, where they will find little work. The authorities are rightly worried that what they label “mass group incidents,” which have been increasing in the last decade, might spin out of control. With the safety valve of foreign demand for Indonesian and Filipino workers shut off, hundreds of thousands of workers are returning home to few jobs and dying farms. Suffering is likely to be accompanied by rising protest, as it already has in Vietnam, where strikes are spreading like wildfire. Korea, with its tradition of militant labor and peasant protest, is a ticking time bomb. Indeed, East Asia may be entering a period of radical protest and social revolution that went out of style when export-oriented industrialization became the fashion three decades ago.

Walden Bello is a Foreign Policy In Focus columnist, a senior analyst at the Bangkok-based Focus on the Global South, president of the Freedom from Debt Coalition, and a professor of sociology at the University of the Philippines.

Foreign Policy In Focus | Asia: The Coming Fury.

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