There are costs to everything, there are benefits to everything, the trick being to aim for the sweet spot of the optimal outcome. Where the costs of doing more to avoid meet the benefits of not doing so. This being true of climate change for example, we’re looking to have the right amount of climate change, not none. Or, with coronavirus, we’re aiming for the right amount of protection of those who might die as against the costs of that prevention.
Recovering from an economic crash caused by a long coronavirus lockdown could take up to five years, an economic thinktank has said.
In a report on the impact of the virus published on Thursday, the Resolution Foundation said a lockdown of six to 12 months could permanently wipe between five and seven per cent off the UK’s gross domestic product.
Better not have a 6 month lockdown then, eh?
5% of GDP is around £100 billion. Given market interest rates – we’ll not get into that Stern Review stuff about using lower discount rates to measure long term effects – the effect more than 20 years out is around spit. And we’ll be wrong but not far wrong to say that it’s 20x 5% is the cost over time.
Ermm, that’s 100% of GDP we’ve just given up over time. To save the lives of what, 20,000 people? 100,000? 1 million?
OK, change the numbers how you’d like. It’s still fairly obvious that a 6 month lockdown isn’t that optimal point, isn’t it? Therefore we shouldn’t do it.
And yep, you can portray this as killing pensioners. Because it is. And?