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Tuesday, March 24, 2020

An imperfect solution to the coronavirus situation

I emphasize "imperfect" because there is not an absolutely perfect solution and there never will be.  COVID-19 is now such a pervasive element that it's as every reputable engineer will note: there is going to be a trade-off.  We won't be able to help one matter without it negatively impacting others.

But from where I sit...

- fast-track production of and widespread treatment with hydroxychloroquine IMMEDIATELY.  Especially in conjunction with zinc supplement, azithromycin and other medications being found to aggressively confront the symptoms of COVID-19.  Especially in light of research that has come out of France in recent days about the hydrozychloroquine/AZT regimen.  This could be our generation's "polio vaccine moment", if we attack coronavirus with something that almost with each passing hour is looking like a silver bullet against the illness.

- no-frills bare-bones economic stimulus of $2000 per U.S. citizen.  Two weeks ago I would have recommended $1000 or even $500 but the damage wrought to the economy since then has become enormous.  A reasonable amount of one-time fiscal injection into the public economy, and that's it.  Meaning no ridiculous and irresponsible riders to the bill.

- pull back on restrictions against public gatherings.  Which seems to be going backward on addressing coronavirus.  But I'm weighing the disease itself against the harm being done against the economy and against society as a whole.  And there is the matter of the United States Constitution: the freedom to assemble in peace and also freedom of of worship are sacred ones.  A lot of states and municipalities right now are arguably overstepping boundaries that were never meant to be crossed.  Expect that to be rigorously confronted in the courts during the months after coronavirus begins to wane.

There are two virtues I've seen that are qualities in general of the domestic reaction to COVID-19: responses are fairly localized and official actions are being delegated.  These are good.  It means that the response to coronavirus in South Dakota won't be the same as the response is in Brooklyn.  And it also means that bureaucracy knows when to get out of the way when those who know best how to rapidly manufacture and distribute ventilators are free to do so.

As for how to get more toilet paper onto the shelves: brother, you're on your own...