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by Neil Godfrey

Many newsfeeds and tweets have freaked me out but these two remain uppermost in the “freak out” department:

The Pandemic Is Going To Cost Us $5 Trillion … Or More

We Ran the Numbers. They’re Devastating

The $1 trillion coronavirus relief package Congress passed won’t come close to making up for the damage caused by COVID-19 and the Trump administration’s lethal dawdling.

We need the government to act or we could fall into a depression rivaling the 1930s.

An 18-month crisis is widely expected. The Trump administration plan is for 18 months. That implies $5 trillion based on my calculations.

The ultimate cost of this novel virus is likely to be north of $7 trillion, assuming this pandemic endures for two years, as German public health officials warn.

and . . .

Coronavirus is spreading rapidly in the US. American culture might make it uniquely vulnerable

Now is hardly the time to be attacking opposition parties, least of all media, as if they are the ones to hold us back. I would expect a civilized society to rise above that sort of thing.

The 1930s depression did not end well for the world. History does not repeat, I know, but I do often think I see times when it rhymes.

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  • Bob Jase
    2020-03-26 13:23:38 GMT+0000 - 13:23 | Permalink

    Look, there’s a good chance the richest .01% might have to live through a day without record profits – what could be worse?

  • E. Harding
    2020-03-26 19:07:48 GMT+0000 - 19:07 | Permalink

    People are incapable of looking at realities. Look at China. It handled the pandemic about as well as the U.S. (i.e., not very), and is doing just fine now.

    • Geoff
      2020-03-28 15:45:41 GMT+0000 - 15:45 | Permalink

      There were a lot of problems with China’s handling, but it got the lockdowns in fairly quick, before most people in the west realised this would be necessary, and enforced them in a way that could never be done in the US. They built huge hospitals within days. Unfortunately I think you’re going to be very disappointed if you think Wuhan is a worst case scenario.

      • Steven C Watson
        2020-03-29 19:02:23 GMT+0000 - 19:02 | Permalink

        South Asia. We could see Black Death casualty levels there more probably than not. Listening to MDs with decades of experience with, and knowledge of, respiratory diseases is … sobering would be understatement.

    • Steven C Watson
      2020-03-29 18:53:38 GMT+0000 - 18:53 | Permalink

      If you believe anything coming out of China, you are being daft.

  • koseighty
    2020-03-26 19:43:13 GMT+0000 - 19:43 | Permalink

    The Fed is issuing $4 trillion in bonds and the stimulus package is $2.2 trillion. $6.2 trillion total planned so far. I’m sure it will go up in the months to come.

  • 2020-03-30 04:11:14 GMT+0000 - 04:11 | Permalink

    My dear fellow bloggers I can only wish you..

    .no magic, no god , but just a word to keep you all diligent in your mind and heart and the soul that you may perchance express to someone along your own sort of apocalyptic consciousness to a better place in these times…

    Very tough stuff we are all experiencing and I myself am at high risk. But I am still here and hopefully as all the bloggers here are.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Nothing more to say!

  • Joe Salimando
    2020-03-31 19:58:28 GMT+0000 - 19:58 | Permalink

    Re: China – I don’t know if The Straits Times is a reliable source, but anyone believing the Chinese have solved the problem might read this:


    What’s interesting about this global misery, IMO, is not the illness itself. On the whole, if you have studied historic plagues, epidemics, and pandemics — and I have, for years — coronavirus seems rather routine for this planet.

    But I’m fascinated by the reaction (including online comments, covidiot videos, etc.) of people. Apparently, lots of us are unhappy with our decisions (including who we are trapped inside with). Obviously, lots and lots of people don’t know what to do with themselves if the distraction of daily work is unavailable. Stunning to find out that young people shake off warnings and (in the U.S.) go to the beach, in crowds, for “spring break” . . .

    . . . and, of course, there are the various local religious institutions still holding services, with large gobs of people in attendance. Is this about God, or the need to pass the collection plate?

    What isn’t surprising (to me): It is now horrifyingly clear that one heck of a lot of us forgot that thing about saving money. I come from a working class family in Brooklyn NY. I got a lot of bad advice and bad ideas (i.e., Catholicism) from my family. But there was one thing I was told that sure as heck made sense then — and now: “Always make sure you have at least 6 months of your expenses in savings.”

    It takes a lot of planning to do that. It requires you turn down the numerous alternatives that exist to spend money. It tells you to live within — or better yet, below — your means. How the heck are you going to save if your basic expenses of living equal what’s coming in?

    Warren Buffet has a saying that goes a bit like this: You can’t tell who is swimming naked until the tide goes out.

    Well, the tide is out, isn’t it? It seems most citizens of the Western world either were not told or did not believe that thing about saving money.

    And now — well, it turns out that there are consequences for the many who choose to live like chickenheads.

    My question is: Will there be a bit more thought by the average citizen on the other side of this? Or are we building up “pent-up demand,” so that everyone resumes spending every bit of cash (and going deeper into credit-card hock for more $) as soon as the virus is behind us?

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