Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Boom and bust

It’s intriguing how key members of the populist right like Bannon want to maintain the squeeze on covid-19, while the small state conservatives and libertarians, plus Trump (hotels, resorts, casinos) want to let go as soon as poss. 

Libertarians in particular have developed an unusually visible concern for the very poor and members of the informal economy. I suppose they dread the spectacle of (undeniably necessary) state handouts.

But here’s the thing, the relative difference between just getting by and not is dwarfed by the gulf between boom and bust...and the accompanying sensation of it. 

Both in the US, and here in Central America, the pressure to ignore the scientific advice will come strongest from those who feel their power and privilege waning. And they will couch their selfishness in the language of ersatz empathy. 

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