Regarding poverty and revolutions, my view begins with the model proposed by William Sidis in his Remark on the Occurrence of Revolutions.
This suggests the idea that revolutions and revolts in general (a revolt being a revolution that has not quite succeeded) are connected in some way or other with direct, obvious, physical discomfort, especially hunger, and possibly lack of clothing and fuel. Not that I wish to be interpreted as saying that this is the cause of revolutions; the causes are quite different. A match will cause an explosion in a powder magazine, but not in a tank of water; and similarly a famine will bring about a revolution in a society where the underlying conditions are such as to favor the spread of such ideas and where other proper circumstances are present.
I believe this model is outdated and must be modified, at least for the moment, on account of two counterhistorical social phenomena:
1. The opiate epidemic
2. The correlation of obesity with poverty in Western nations
The former is important because it suppresses the anxieties of low “social mood” (i.e. the typical measure of economic distress). The latter is important because the anxieties of the 1st world poor are not commonly due to the hunger mechanism suggested by Sidis. They may be associated with malnutrition, arguably, but not with calorie deficits. The model’s proposed mechanism is no longer in evidence. Therefore if the prediction is correct, it will be accidental.
It may be argued that civil war may be predicted by wealth disparity rather than real privation, i.e. relative lack of nutrition vs. absolute lack of nutrition. But I expect that wealth disparity alone only results in low trust and bad faith, and thus only individual, petty criminal behavior rather than the formation of high-trust barbarian subcultures with potential to form breakout civilizations. People might rush a police barricade motivated by hunger and survival, but no one ever risked his life in a rigged game for post-material status points (except when they have no real understanding of the risk, e.g. those idiots who tried to bicycle through rural Muslim country and got tortured to death for their naivete).
Trust generally cannot be formed on rational grounds alone. Rather, the formation of trust appears to correlate with the occurrence of genius in a population, as evidenced by the high ethnocentrism, high IQ, and low trust seen in Chyna:
(I’d H/T the source of that graphic but I can’t remember where I found it.)
Relative scarcity is probably necessary to produce a counter-elite leading a high-trust barbarian outburst group, but not sufficient.