Major cities across the U.S. are dealing with record crime waves that continue to escalate since the beginning of the COVID-19 War that was launched by politicians, which solidifies our trend forecast made some two-and-a-half years ago. 

We have long noted that lockdowns killed the human spirit, destroyed small businesses, and took their mental toll on much of the population. Indeed, it will take years to learn just how much damage these lockdowns caused.

These big cities have been working at getting people back at their desks to get economies rolling again, but the surge in crime has made returning to the office a tough sell for many companies.

Chris Kempczinski, the chief executive of McDonald’s, told an economics conference recently that he is having difficulty convincing employees that it is safe to return to corporate headquarters in Chicago due to the crime wave.

“Everywhere I go, I’m confronted by the same question. ‘What’s going on in Chicago?’” he said at the Economic Club of Chicago. “There is a general sense that our city is in crisis.”

He described a city in decline and spoke about drug use and violent crimes that have been occurring inside store locations.

“We’re seeing homelessness issues in our restaurants. We’re having drug overdoses that are happening in our restaurants. So we see in our restaurants, every single day, what’s happening in society at large.”

City leaders did not immediately respond to local news outlets about his comments, but they, no doubt, took notice. 

McDonald’s accounts for two billion dollars for the Cook County economy. Chicago just lost Caterpillar, Boeing, and Citadel that exited the city. 

The trend, of course, is not limited to Chicago. Starbucks recently closed locations in Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., and Philadelphia over similar concerns.

“After careful consideration, we are closing some stores in locations that have experienced a high volume of challenging incidents that make it unsafe to continue to operate,” a Starbucks spokesperson told CNN Business.

Kempczinski said besides the safety concerns at these locations, crime in Chicago is hurting his company’s effort to attract top talent. He said there are new challenges in convincing “a promising McDonald’s executive to relocate to Chicago from one of our other offices than it was just a few years ago.”

“It’s more difficult for me to recruit a new employee to McDonald’s, to join us in Chicago than it was in the past,” he said.

San Francisco is another city that has been impacted by crime in the past few years, and a recent poll conducted by the city’s main newspaper found that about half of the population has been victims of theft in the past five years.

The San Francisco Chronicle reported that about 45 percent of those surveyed told the paper that they have experienced some form of theft, including 24 percent who said they experienced violence.  

The poll noted that 54 percent of black residents reported having something stolen over the past five years, compared to 43 percent of whites. The poll also found that about 36 percent of Hispanics and 36 percent of mixed-race residents said they were either threatened or physically attacked in the past five years, which is the highest of any racial group.


New Orleans the Homicide Capital

New Orleans recently overtook St. Louis to become the homicide capital of the U.S. after seeing a 141 percent jump from 2019. The Daily Mail also noted that carjackings are up by 210 percent in the city best known for its nightlife and jambalaya. 

The report noted that in the first six months of the year, the city recorded 41 murders per 100,000. To put the number into perspective, Chicago saw 11.5 murders per 100,000 and New York City saw 2.4 per 100,000. St. Louis saw 61 murders per 100,000 for all of 2021, according to analysis from Rochester Institute of Technology, the report said. 

The Wall Street Journal spoke to a worker at an auto body shop in the city who said he no longer feels safe at work because seven people have been killed since January. He said a customer pulled a gun on an employee who refused to fill a tire with air. The worker called the police, who arrived the following day.

TREND FORECAST: When the COVID War began we warned there would be sharp spikes in crime, since, as Gerald Celente says, “When people lose everything and have nothing left to lose, they lose it,” and especially in areas where prosecutors encourage the problem by being deliberately soft on crime.

As inflation and the various stresses brought on by the COVID War continue (and increase), so, too, will crime (and drug use, and mental illness, homelessness, and public nuisance behaviors). 

And the problem is worldwide. As we had forecast, thanks to the draconian COVID War measures imposed on populations by politicians, a bad situation has become much worse. 

A new report by the Major Cities Chiefs Association, which surveys 70 major police agencies across the U.S., found robberies and aggravated assaults in 2022 reached 236,962, compared to 226,967 the previous year. Homicides were down slightly in the first six months of this year. 

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