Why you should care about protests in Tunisia, Yemen and Egypt

Posted: February 1, 2011 in economy, political stupidity
Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Several weeks ago there was a governmental overthrow that occurred in Tunisia and it is easy to write off Tunisia as a tiny country that has no impact on life in America, more about Tunisia at the following link:

http://www.npr.org/2011/01/16/132975274/Social-Media-Gets-Credit-For-Tunisian-Overthrow

Then there were protests in Yemen and we’ve talked about Yemen before, first a post about the recent protests:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-middle-east-12295864

And what we’ve discussed about Yemen previously:

https://zdeaconblue.wordpress.com/2010/12/23/the-next-big-terror-threat/

Finally, unless you’ve been in a coma for the last week you probably know that there are massive protests going on in the country of Egypt.  The protestors on the street, in what have been relatively peaceful protests so far; seem to want one thing, Hosni Mubarak out of office.  Mubarak has been the ruler of Egypt for nearly thirty years and the people of Egypt are demanding a change, you can read more about Mubarak at the following link:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hosni_Mubarak

At this point a natural question arises were the neocons correct about the Middle East?  Are we seeing the results of the policy of forcing democracy on other countries?  An interesting discussion on this topic is available at the following link:

http://newsbusters.org/blogs/noel-sheppard/2011/01/30/matthews-were-neocons-right-about-middle-east-was-bush-better-equippe

Personally, I don’t see a stable democracy in Iraq or in Afghanistan, and there are still plenty of non-democratic governments in the Middle East including Iran and Saudi Arabia.  What seems to be occurring in the streets of the Arab world is not related to Islam and democracy but a very simple issue, basic human survival and the gap between those who have power, money and control and those who are struggling to survive.  Unemployment, poverty, and lack of education and opportunity is what the people are calling for in the streets of Tunisia, Yemen and especially Egypt.

So why should you care?  You are safe at home and watching Egypt on CNN, so really why should you care?  Ok, first this can impact our economy, in a minor way if Egypt’s economy generally melts down without too much violence.  If however things in Egypt really disintegrate and there is an interruption in travel through the Suez Canal, which is controlled by Egypt, then it could be a very big deal.  That interruption would cause oil coming out of the region to travel an additional 6,000 miles around Africa and that will impact oil prices.  You may have noticed gas prices creeping up recently and I think you can count on the creep continuing with what’s going on in Egypt.  If it really goes south there could be a significant increase in gas prices and as we have seen that impacts prices across the board in the US.

However, I’ll give you an even bigger reason to worry about what’s going on in these countries.  The issues that are being taken on in Egypt, poverty, education, unemployment, and the prosperity gap, do not only exist in these countries.  Looking at Greece, Spain, the UK and the United States this issue exists everywhere and is getting worse.  My friends, there is a limit to how long a person can suffer, can watch his/her children suffer while others have control of his/her life.  At some point people will say no more and express themselves, and then, all bets are off.  So why should you care, I’ll tell you, the country you live in, is not as different from Egypt as you might like to think.

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