The most important unrest in today’s world may not be on Tahrir Square or even in Syria. A growing wave of strikes across China may ultimately say more about where the world is headed than anything in the Middle East.
As this piece from the Financial Times reports, export orders are declining and factories across China are cutting back on hours and employment. Workers who are just getting by with overtime cannot live on their regular hourly wage; unrest is reported up and down the coastal zone.
What is going on in China matters for better or for worse much more than anything that is happening in Egypt. Unfortunately most daily papers don’t do enough to make events in that vast and explosive country clear to American readers. Mead advice: watch this as closely as you can. We have no way of knowing when or how China will pass into a new and likely more tumultuous period in its history, but pass it will, and whether you are an investor, a policy maker, or an interested observer of the contemporary world, you will want to be of the first rather than one of the last to understand how things are shaking out.