I think most of these events are less related to the "economy" per se, and more related to people being jerks.
Some are power-hungry jerks, others are just the regular stupid kind.
Either way, the low classed are giving the elites the excuse to do what they've wanted to do all along.
Now, they just have to wait and let the pressure build enough for the middle class (well, those that think they're still in it) to demand that 'something be done'. They've already got the 'something' in mind.