I guess there aren’t enough video games and trinkets in Iceland’s shops to keep everyone in a consumer coma. Perhaps they just can’t afford the coma. Then again, they might just be paying attention:
Despite the loans, Iceland faces a sharp economic contraction and surging unemployment while many Icelanders also risk losing their homes and life savings.
A young man climbed onto the balcony of the Althing building, where the president appears upon inauguration and on Iceland’s national day, and hung a banner reading: “Iceland for Sale – $2.100.000.000″, the amount of the loan Iceland is getting from the IMF.
The rally lasted less than one hour and as daylight began to wane, demonstrators drifted away into the nearby coffee shops where the price of a cup of coffee has shot up to 300 kronas in the last few weeks, up by about one third from before the crisis struck, as the currency has tumbled.
Opposition parties tabled a no-confidence motion in the government on Friday over its handling of the crisis, but the motion carries little chance of toppling the ruling coalition which has a solid parliamentary majority.
“I’ve just had enough of this whole thing,” said Gudrun Jonsdottir, a 36-year-old office worker.
“I don’t trust the government, I don’t trust the banks, I don’t trust the political parties, and I don’t trust the IMF. We had a good country here and they’ve ruined it.”
Join the club Gudun.