The Chinese Coronavirus (COVID-19) hit American shores — officially, anyway, there is significant evidence that it arrived earlier — in late January 2020. The American public was then told that a two-week shutdown of the economy would “flatten the curve,” relieving the pressure on hospital intensive care units and saving lives in the long run. The average American, including conservatives,…
Episode 427 has Skyler giving his commentary on a new report by the American Institute of Economic Research titled, “Cost of Lockdowns: A Preliminary Report”. It begins: “In the debate over coronavirus policy, there has been far too little focus on the costs of lockdowns. It’s very common for the proponents of these interventions to write articles and large studies without even mentioning the downsides. Here is a brief look at the cost of stringencies in the United States, and around the world, including stay-at-home orders, closings of business and schools, restrictions on gatherings, shutting of arts and sports, restrictions on medical services, and interventions in the freedom of movement.”
Let me be clear: I consider suicide a tremendous tragedy. It has touched my life and my family very deeply, and personally. It seems to me that there are a thousand and one options, in most cases, before one should undertake such a dramatic, final, and irreversible course of action. That said, in the final analysis, the decision to live or not to live is – and should be – 100% the exclusive choice of the owner of that life – and never some outside party. Ever.
My nature is such that I simply can’t see government as a solution to anything. This puts me at odds with most of the rest of my species.
The economic analysis of politics goes by many names: political economy, rational choice theory, formal political theory, social choice, economics of governance, endogenous policy theory, and public choice. Each of these labels picks out a subtly different intellectual tradition. Each tradition expands our understanding of the world. My favorite, though, remains public choice.
“Most voters in six 2020 swing states,” an early September CNBC/Change Research poll finds, “do not consider either President Donald Trump or Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden mentally fit to be president.”
This resignation to ongoing government lockdowns, endless social distancing, mandatory mask orders, and travel restrictions—even as the virus wanes in the US—is damaging to our social and economic health, and may be particularly problematic for children who are separated from their peers.
Between 2 million and 3 million Americans will die! That was the prediction from “experts” at London’s Imperial College when COVID-19 began. They did also say if there was “social distancing of the whole population,” the death toll could be cut in half, but 1.1 million to 1.46 million Americans would still die by this summer. Our actual death toll has been about one-tenth of that.
Anytime you politicize anything— by letting government dictates and legislation force a one-size-fits-all path on everyone– people get angry. And who can really blame them?
Last week, I outlined much of my argument against Harvard Law School professor Elizabeth Bartholet that I incorporated into our debate, but here are five takeaways from Monday’s discussion.