As you watch the television coverage of riots in the center of Athens, you might find it useful to ponder for a minute on the situation. Not for the conspiracy theories or the endless economic analysis we are all tired of. From a practical point of view the items which might appear in your country too sometime in the future:
1. What to do with millions of unemployed people? That’s a lot of time and energy available from a lot of people. If it doesn’t get channeled into something, some is more than likely to end up in riots. If religion was the opium of the people in bygone times, soap operas later, what is taking up the slack now?
2. Who is the enemy? Again, if the bad guys are not defined, everyone is up for the part. Many modern economic crises featured politicians’ focusing on some “other” to blame. Used sparingly in politics or business, this strategy can in fact be useful to help foster social solidarity towards a common goal.
3. Everyone’s an expert. Social media and the internet have dislocated any traditional way of controlling the agenda. Government inaction makes it even easier for a minor event on Twitter or Facebook to grow disproportionately to its true impact. The only way to stay ahead in the internet age is to run faster than everyone else. All the time.