Much of the world is now in lockdown to protect populations from the deadly spread of coronavirus. Yet, the US government is looking into an alternative approach. The latest statements from Donald Trump insist that 'the cure...[cannot be] worse than the disease'. These comments mark a striking policy difference to the rest of the world. Namely, they place more value on economic growth than on human life. During this unique pandemic, are government funds better spent on public health, or on stimulating the economy?
This is a false dichotomy
These two elements are intertwined. Neglecting public health will cause a damaging chain of events, including global economic ruin.
Hardline economism is obscuring the reality of coronavirus
Increasingly, political analyses use statistics and economic forecasts to make decisions. But these can be extremely misleading.
Poorer states with few cases will disproportionately suffer
Blanket lockdown will unfairly crash economies where there are no coronavirus cases. When it comes to the smaller, less wealthy states, the longer they stay shut down, the more they will feel the disproportionate effects on their economies.