Coronavirus: The Economic Consequences of a Failed Response

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I have nothing to say about the fatality of the Coronavirus. I have something to say about the economic consequences of the virus outbreak and the response to it.

Whatever the death rate from the coronavirus may be, the reaction to the threat is even more deadly. If the present economic blockade will go on, we will soon have no longer the means to provide basic supplies. Without transport, we will run out of food. Essential medicines will no longer be available. This is how a containment strategy works: ailment cured, patient dead.

If the governments continue acting the way they do, we will no longer be able to buy necessary items because the shelves are empty. Later, when the shelves may be filling up again, people won’t be able to buy because they will have no more money left in their pockets.

Companies will have closed, and salaries do not show up in our bank accounts. Not the coronavirus brings down the economy, but the way politics responds to the epidemic. Even if the current nightmare should end and the curfews and travel bans will no longer be in place, it will take more than a decade for the economy to recuperate — not from the virus but from the reaction to the virus.

The real threat is not the coronavirus but the wave of bankruptcy and unemployment that will move soon across the economies like a tsunami. We will experience massive impoverishment — not because of the epidemic, but because of politics.

When there will be heaps of dead corpses in the streets in the future, the cause will not be the Coronavirus but the result of the lack of essential medicine that will no longer be available because of the interruption of the global supply lines.

If the Chinese had not made such a show about the Coronavirus would the Western world reacted differently? Did the endeavor of the Chinese government to gain absolute control over its people inspire the Western leaders to do the same? If there had been no drastic measures by the Chinese would Western countries even have noted that a new virus is making its rounds?

Has the West been framed? Maybe the Chinese had no intention to trap the West. Just by way of authoritarianism, the Chinese government moved in with all force to stamp out the fire and eliminate some dissidents along the way.

The horrible thing is not that the Western leaders have fallen into the trap — full of hubris as they are — that was to be expected. The horrible thing is how quickly the people in the West have succumbed to authoritarianism. Without any noticeable rise in the general death rate of the population in Europe and the United States, the governments have brought a plague over their own countries by a policy of shutdowns that crush the very means to fight an epidemic if there had really been one.

Politics as it is: at first, the government destroys the economy, then it acts as its repair shops and claims its indispensability. The call for “getting ready” and “being prepared” for the coronavirus epidemic is an expression of modern hubris, of the creed that man was in control of everything — a master above all ailments and the ruler of the world.

In the end, the costs of fighting the epidemic will be higher than the damage if we let the virus have its run. This is the true tragedy of what is going on now and it is the result of our arrogant attitude, the false claim that we are the masters of the universe.

This is not a horror movie. The terror is real. It would be a great error to expect that after the current turmoil, life would get on as before. Who needs martial law when you can get more power by declaring a medical emergency?

The main lesson so far to be drawn from the coronavirus outbreak is, firstly, that politics exists in managing those problems that would not exist without politics; secondly, that it goes surprisingly fast and easy to establish a dictatorship; and, thirdly, that there is no lack of willing executioners.

What we currently see in Europe, the United States and some other countries are the most irresponsible acts committed by the rulers who play with the fears of the people and pretend to protect them when in fact they have nothing else in mind but only their power-grabbing and our enslavement.

Yes, there is reason to panic, but it is not because of the virus but of the coronavirus politics. The organized panic is a fine test for the State how far it can go to terrorize the citizens and rob them of their freedom without meeting any resistance. Like sheep, people follow the commands of their leader who prepares the lambs to pass silently into the slaughterhouse.

Virology, epidemiology, and the areas connected reveal that almost everything the mass media, the politicians and the governments pronounce is false or highly distorted.

The official corona death count is fake. There is no reliable method to establish from finding the coronavirus in a corpse that this person has died because of the virus. The lives of human beings end due to innumerable factors and old people die anyway. They die from many causes and sometimes die without any reason at all.

Sooner or later, every man must die. If a coronavirus is found in a body, this does not prove that the virus was the cause of death. The virus is just one of an immense number of possible causes, yet to indicate the virus as the cause is currently quite fashionable and spares many additional investigations.

As it would be absurd to claim that because one finds water in the body of a dead person that water was the cause of death, so it is equally wrong to claim that the coronavirus was the origin of a person’s demise because coronavirus can be found in the corpse. Nevertheless, this is how these death statistics are currently made up.

The statistics about the number of the virus bearers are fake because the error rates of test kits for new viruses are usually extremely high and in the case of the coronavirus, they may be even higher because the demand for them has risen extremely in a short time. Having a data set does not mean that the data in the set represent the facts.

Finding something “new”, does not mean that it has not existed before. In medicine, too, a “new” virus is not necessarily a new virus. Most of the time a new virus is the modification of some old virus. Such modifications happen all of the time. Without specific tests, they remain undetected. If they were detected, we would have reason to panic almost every day.

One can be sure that when the coronavirus epidemic is over, another virus will appear sooner or later. Imagine that each time politics will react as it was done with corona and the tragic absurdity of the present anti-virus policy becomes obvious.

Beyond the economic damage lurks an even greater tragedy of the current virus policy: the loss of basic human rights and of our individual freedom. Given the modern means of surveillance, a new totalitarianism would exceed all the terrors known from the dictatorial regimes of the past.

Written by

Dr. Antony P. Mueller is a German professor of economics who currently teaches in Brazil. See his website: http://continentaleconomics.com/

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