I can’t help but think, when Mr. Trump’s admittedly overoptimistic (even serendipitous. at times) predictions are pilloried, how FDR has been lionized by historians (in part) for giving America a sense of optimism during the Great Depression, speaking of how soon there would be a “chicken in every pot”, although he knew full well there were far more pots than chickens, and even if there weren’t, the US did not have the ability to deliver them to said pots unspoiled.
At any rate, the “lockdown vs partial reopening” (no governor or mayor has authorized a full return to the status quo as of yet) debate is now moot. 35 states have authorized a partial reopening of different sorts, and several more will re-open in the next seven days, meaning that this is no longer a “red vs blue” football as it was two weeks ago; blue states are reopening as well.
Why? Well, unlike the Feds, who get to exist in an unreal heaven facilitated by the instant creation of cash on a computer, governors have to work in the harsh reality that balanced budgets are required by their state constitutions. They need tax revenue and they need it now.
So, we are where we are. The economy is reopening, and there’s little anyone can do to stop it. The governors (for the most part) support it (although they want their “phase-in” instructions followed), but ultimately, the business owners are rapidly leaning towards a collective “fuck you” to the establishment politicians, now led by Elon Musk, but secure in the knowledge that no mayor or governor has the ability or desire to incarcerate tens of thousands of individuals who otherwise are law abiding citizens, pillars of their communities, and local leaders of commerce.
Can you think of a better way to destroy the United States by going on a pogrom against small business owners, who are your primary producers? I can’t.
So, the role of the politicians and pundits now is to advise the population to stay home, to social distance, to mask, and to exercise caution when in public.
And all this in light of a new United Nations study which shows that the economic fallout from COVID19 is likely to exceed the medical fallout.
Economic devastation from coronavirus could eventually kill more than virus, report says
The United Nations has predicted that the economic fallout from the worldwide coronavirus outbreak may end up killing…
At any rate, I felt inspired by all this to produce a new round of charts based on data from worldindata and other sources, so if you’re so inclined, enjoy: