12 Oct '12, 9am
IRAN: Panic Is Worse Than It Looks
October 10, 2012: In the capital there were violent clashes in the streets downtown. People were angry at the rapid inflation (currently over 30 percent) and sharp increase in what it cost to buy foreign currency. So far this year, the price (in rials, the Iranian currency) has more than tripled from 11,000 rials per dollar to over 39,000. About half of that increase occurred in the last two weeks or so as a result of the government trying to put restrictions on private money changers. That caused a panic. There has also been growing inflation even for good produced inside Iran. This is caused by the government printing more money to reward its loyalists (about a fifth of the population.) The government doesn't care if its opponents suffer, because it can point to these people and complain that it's all the fault of the sanctions. This worked for Saddam Hussein when Iraq w...