There’s an interesting reminder today in the Daily Telegraph about the extent of Iran’s economic problems (which are, when you come to think of it, a perversely remarkable achievement):
The scale of Iran’s economic crisis became clear yesterday when the regime increased petrol prices by 25 per cent overnight and prepared to introduce fuel rationing. These measures may damage President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s popular standing still further. In a country with 70 million people – at least half of whom are under 25 – the economy is stagnant and failing.
Indeed these measures may, and that’s good news. Nevertheless, I’d also guess that they increase the chance that Ahmadinejad will look for an opportunity to manufacture some sort of a crisis to (a) appeal to nationalist pride; and (b) boost the oil price (Iran still wins, net net, from that) still further. Careful, please.