Tomorrow is going to be the day that Eric Cantona, ex Manchester United superstar, has declared as back-run revolution. His idea is simple and ingenious, use economics tools to influence decision making. Actually someone might argue that any kind of protest can be thought as having an economic effect. For example, strikes cost both on working hours and if there is going to be blockage a network disruption. However strikes and protests might last for weeks or even months and at the end the willingness to work of workers, in order to provide food for their family (this is also a Short run effect), might be stronger than any long run aim that a strike or protest might have. On the other hand I wonder how many days can a financial system cope with a run on its deposits, probably not much given that banks sustain only a limited amount of cash in their accounts.
Apparently, banks representatives worry with this development. BNP Paribas call the action as “ill-founded”. Political leaders; France president, budget and finance minister have all reacted against the action by either downgrading its importance or personally attacking Eric Cantona.
The most important problem, though, is whether people that will follow Cantona’s suggestion have the power to outrun bank’s deposit, probably not. However if a movement develops and the number of people participating day after day soars, in other words if network dynamics play their part, then it might have a serious effect. Another problem is whether people are willing to destroy their countries financial system, in other words whether the threat is credible. To conclude I believe that Cantona’s suggestion adds a bargaining tool to the demonstrators and we are going to find out very soon if it is going to be effective.