Biggest Ethical Choice Since......??

Discussion in 'The Water Cooler' started by twenty02, Mar 18, 2020.

  1. twenty02

    twenty02 Hall of Famer
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    I believe in the coming weeks, world leaders may very well be faced with ther biggest ethical dilemma since I don't know when.... maybe going back to WW2 (though an entirely different type of enemy).

    How much is the global economy worth saving compared with saving lives of a relatively small % (but very large nominal numbers) of an at- risk population?

    Crushing the virus may require creating a global economic situation that ends up killing exponentially more people over the long run from all the human maladies that we know are correlated with economic disaster.

    And you don't get to sit around and theorize it, model it and debate it for months, either.
     
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  2. mcmurtry66

    mcmurtry66 Junior
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    That’s shitty stuff. I’m certain public sentiment will shape this ethical dilemma. Americans won’t stand in bread lines over the stats you hypothesize imo.
     
  3. INRanger27

    INRanger27 All-American
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    Isn’t there a middle ground where we quarantine/isolate those at real risk and strive to get back to normalcy with everyone else?
     
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  4. mcmurtry66

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    I thought that too but it may not be feasible. So many old people interact daily with younger people whether it be hospitals, nursing homes etc, and it appears that young people are more susceptible and have worse outcomes than we initially thought.
     
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  5. TheOriginalHappyGoat

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    It's definitely going to reveal what kind of people we are. It shouldn't be impossible to minimize the pain. Certainly, there's no reason for the economic catastrophe to result in "exponentially more" deaths than the disease. So long as we maintain the ability to produce and disseminate the necessities of life, it should be possible to ensure that our social and economic disruption is temporary. It's just a matter of responding in a way that helps get everyone through this, and doesn't ignore large swaths of people.
     
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  6. twenty02

    twenty02 Hall of Famer
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    Not one that I've yet seen.

    Enjoy your nightmares after thoroughly reading this....(the actual full paper linked at bottom)

    https://www.imperial.ac.uk/news/196234/covid19-imperial-researchers-model-likely-impact/

    I think people should be prepared for a tail risk scenario of a 6 month shutdown of the world and a global depression. I want to reinforce its a TAIL RISK.... but the tail is a lot fatter than I'm comfortable with.

    Or we ignore that and have 2-5m people die in the US alone.

    There is reason Trump looks so sober now.... someone finally scared the shit out of him.
     
    6 twenty02, Mar 19, 2020
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2020
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  7. Digressions

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    https://www.shmoop.com/great-depression/economy.html!

    (Forgive the source, but I thought it did a good job of offering an overview and I appreciated it's conclusion wrt Keynes and Friedman.)

    What were the problems during the Great Depression? ...all the above. What seems to be our current economic problems? ...all the above. What was the final solution to the Great Depression?...WWII. Ultimately, Keynes' ideas were used, but that doesn't mean Friedman's ideas would not have also worked. What obviously didn't work, was waiting for market forces to self correct.

    We should look at the economy like Dr. Fauci looks at this pandemic. "Wherever we think we are, we're probably two weeks behind." And, "if we're being accused of doing too much, we're probably about right."

    Does anyone remember any foreign leaders complaining about our use of QE, during the GR? I don't. And what were the results of QE? It seems to me, that it worked out quite well. And most of the politicians (IIRC) that were complaining about the use of QE, are the same politicians that were bragging about how well the economy was doing just a few short weeks ago.

    We should be doing everything in our power to inflate this economy. And we should try to do it, using the Feds balance sheet, as much as possible. Even if it means going from the Feds balance sheet directly to the treasury. Inflation would be like a dove carrying an olive branch.

    WRT writing checks to people from the treasury...of course we should. Once again, it's not about fairness, it's about getting through this disaster. WWII got us out of the GD, because it was a huge public works program. The economic benefit of paying someone to manufacture a bullet, and then paying someone to shoot that bullet at a German, is the exact economic benefit as paying two people to stay at home and watch their children.

    It's also important to remember: money, wealth, the time value of money, ect., are all man-made abstract constructs. We often assign a value or worth to something, but it is based on a relationship, relative to something else. These are difficult times and they're most likely going to get worse before they get better, but they will get better. There are things we can do to help. We should be bold and we shouldn't hesitate. I wish everyone the best.
     
  8. TheOriginalHappyGoat

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    I've been listening to some people I know in the medical field talk about this report, and here is the main takeaway: If we are lucky, we will have a vaccine tested, produced, and distributed in 18 months. If we keep the country shut down, we can probably go back to normal after about two months, but then we'll need to shut down again a month later, continuing this cycle of two months off, one month on, for a year and a half. Basically, we have to take 6 months worth of social and economic activity, and spread it out over 18 months.

    I'm still hopeful that we can mitigate that economic hit by finding new ways to do things. I mentioned elsewhere about a potential boom in carryout business that might help keep restaurants afloat, for example. But no matter how you slice it, what the experts are telling us to prepare for is...sobering to say the least.
     
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  9. sglowrider

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    My big gripe is really about it was all so avoidable. There examples to be learnt from like Taiwan, Hong Kong etc.
    But there a cultural element of not readily willing to learn from others beyond the shores especially in this case, same virus with identical characteristics.

    Ultimately the buck stops with Pence. The Covid-19 Czar.
     
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  10. TheOriginalHappyGoat

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    I think the idea that this was avoidable is completely torn to pieces by reports like this. This virus is going to spread. Going into lockdown early, as we are doing here, will delay the spread. But delay is all we can do until there is a vaccine.

    It appears that there is nothing we could have done to nip this in the bud early and prevent the pain altogether.
     
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  11. sglowrider

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    Containment is the first objective. But it requires federal level coordination and funding. There wasnt much of a serious attempt.... It was political posturing and then straight to mitigation.
    The UK was similar.

    Seriously doctor friends of mine here are all scratching their heads. My sister has a MPH from Columbia -- and she was panicking because of the lack of seriousness from the administration. And now the inevitable.
     
    11 sglowrider, Mar 19, 2020
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2020
  12. TheOriginalHappyGoat

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    I'm not sure exactly what you think the delineation between containment and mitigation is. I'm not entirely sure you do. Our state shut entirely down after 0.002% tested positive. WTF more do you want? Yes, it would be great if we had tested more earlier. But we responded extremely aggressively. And this report suggests that aggressive response only buys you some time. What, were we supposed to look into a time machine and close all the borders before the first case was even known about?
     
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  13. sglowrider

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    Testing isnt containment. Its a requirement for containment. Its like a weighing machine. It tells me I maybe over-weight. Now what? What next?

    The key after that is to track, map and the isolate. You are looking it from a pinhole perspective of what your state is doing. Its not a best-case study to start with then.

    Look at this:
    https://infographics.channelnewsasi...??cid=h3_referral_inarticlelinks_24082018_cna

    This is a map of every positive tested individual in the country. From here, the track their primary contacts and then the secondary then quarantine and/or home isolate them.
    This is how you try and manage the spread.

    Is this what they do where you live? Like I said earlier -- my life has not changed one iaota -- no schools shut, restaurants curfews etc.
     
    13 sglowrider, Mar 19, 2020
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2020
  14. TheOriginalHappyGoat

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    Besides the differences in logistical capabilities, based on what we know of this virus, you are fooling yourself if you think either of the following:

    1. Singapore has defeated this disease and can quickly get back to business as normal.
    2. Our relatively (compared to yours) shoddy tracking system makes us susceptible in a way you are not.

    This is a virus that spreads easily. So it will do that. There are only three defenses:

    1. Herd immunity.
    2. Vaccine.
    3. Complete isolation.

    The first is unacceptable, because too many people have to die to get there. The second will take us 18 months to get to. The third is what we are doing right now. The question is how we keep our society going for a year and a half while we move from #3 to #2.
     
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  15. TheOriginalHappyGoat

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    From BBC:

    The reality is that Singapore will have to give up contact tracing if numbers continue to rise. It is expensive, labour intensive and at some point the virus will overtake the contact tracers.

    But until then it is a race against an invisible offender. The tracers know it just takes a few more untraceable cases before the virus begins surging through the population.​
     
  16. TheOriginalHappyGoat

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    @Marvin the Martian Until I click on your name, in the very small version, your avatar looks a lot like Tom Hanks.

    I think it's because the one thing you can make out in the small version is a smile.
     
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  17. sglowrider

    sglowrider Hall of Famer
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    Goat, you are what they say or used to say in England. Picking up the fag end of the conversation.

    I have mentioned many times now about how things are done in the gold standards of pandemic management. Of those options you have mentioned, they are reflective of options which are draconian and from where you are from.

    As I have said before -- the longer you delay, the more draconian your solutions. There are many ways of doing this. And none of the options you mention above is ever prescribed.

    Here's some perspective:
    https://time.com/5802293/coronavirus-covid19-singapore-hong-kong-taiwan/

    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/03/13/opinion/coronavirus-best-response.html

    It pisses me off that Trump in all his wisdom decided t play it politically at the very start. The above-mentioned nations didnt and went serious early. Its not one measure or the other that is required. Its a whole litany of measures. Trump quotes banning of flights -- we did that but it was followed up by a whole series of activities including the track, mapping and isolation -- plus management of secondary contacts.

    And as to picking up the fag-ends of a convo, I had mentioned a number of times here already -- you are about to enter your 1st Wave of Contagion. We are in our 2nd. And I had said earlier, this 2nd Wave is much more complex to manage and control than the 1st. (See the interactive map I linked up above.)
    I am three months ahead of your curve Goat.
     
  18. TheOriginalHappyGoat

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    Then WTF are you saying? Do you or do you not agree that we are faced with 18 months of a completely new social and economic structure as we deal with keeping the planet alive while we wait for a vaccine?

    Different polities have responded differently based on need. I get that. We've responded as we needed to. Delayed, but very aggressively. But the end result is the same for everyone. We can't go back to normal until we have a vaccine. Period. So what are we really talking about here?
     
  19. sglowrider

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    See above -- we can control the 1st Wave -- the 2nd Wave which is what we are in requires a whole new strategy. Our confirmed cases were holding steady at 90+ for nearly a month then suddenly within a week it tripled. The reason why is that we had visitors coming into Singapore carrying the virus plus Singaporeans who travelled abroad picking it up now.

    (The world around us has changed -- blooming numbers in the places where Singaporeans either holiday or do business in. This wasn't the case a month ago.)

    The political powers to be, to now need to now figure out a balance between the physical well-being of the citizens and economic well being. Its an election year.
     
  20. TheOriginalHappyGoat

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    So I split the conversation by responding twice, but in response to this post, I will point only to my previous response, so we can get back to one single line of thought. So what are we really talking about here?

    Please feel free to quote both in your response for a sense of closure. :D:D:D
     
  21. sglowrider

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    I am talking about this subject from a practical perspective and what's happening on the ground -- and with a power of hindsight -- since we are 2-3months ahead of your curve.

    You think you have done containment -- I am saying its not even half-arse attempt. There is more to the whole strategy.
    The other thing I am saying is that there are question marks on its sustainability. We are already facing our 2nd wave and the strategy from the 1st wont work.
     
  22. TheOriginalHappyGoat

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    And that's not really important, to be honest. Maybe your response saved a few dozen people our response would have killed. Bully for you. But we are all in the same boat now. We are all facing a year and a half of tremendous economic disruption in order to save untold millions of people. That's what this thread is really about. So again, what's really the point? Do you are do you not agree that we are facing a long-term socio-economic crisis, and we need to figure out how to get through it?
     
  23. sglowrider

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    Bottom line is that you have an easily avoidable situation. There are case studies on how to manage it but were either never learnt or not taken seriously. I was the very first person to even post about Coronavirus - months ago. So if a pleb like me knows about it, surely those in power should have started preparing the correct pandemic management playbook back in Dec. Instead, it was played to an audience -- like banning fo flights and that was it which is a dog & pony show. Other measures should have started falling into place right after. Three months notice wasnt enough?

    Trump should be culpable.
     
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  24. sglowrider

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    As I suggested before, long term solution -- free vaccinations for everyone otherwise it will never end. It just highlights the weakness of the current healthcare system too.
    Short-term since your cats out of the bag, bring in the military and use their humongous resources to track, manage and isolate the cases and their secondary contacts. The longer you wait, just like Italy, there is always a critical tipping point where the healthcare infrastructure will not be able to meet the situation. The fatality will be Central Africa like.

    Leadership needs to be decisive and for christ sake, bring in the experts and stop depending on Jared. The poor boy has already so much on his plate.

    And lock Stephen Miller in a padded cell -- herd immunity isnt the solution.
     
  25. TheOriginalHappyGoat

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    You are obsessed with track and isolate. That's important, but it doesn't address what we are talking about now. A vaccine is 18 months away. We have to manage society for a year and a half in this panic.
     
  26. sglowrider

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    This is what I see will happen. Like a massive hype build-up of a movie, the hype will not match the actual. But in this case, there is actually a delay contagion but it gets misread by both the powers to be and Joe Public.

    Then people/companies started to relax their measures then the shite hits the fan again but this time, it becomes the boy who cried wolf scenario.
     
  27. sglowrider

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  28. TheOriginalHappyGoat

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    That's the point. We can ease off the restrictions after a while, then the diseases surges again, then we have to crack down again. Rinse. Repeat. And it will be the same for you as it is for us. All your great track and isolate response won't mean shit for the next 18 months. That's what we're talking about here. Not what we already did wrong, but what we are facing.
     
  29. Marvin the Martian

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    China had no new cases Wednesday. That sounds exciting, but unless she holds that for 2 weeks then is able to 100% seal her borders from incoming traffic, it isn't totally helpful.
     
  30. sglowrider

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    As explained early GOAT, this 2nd wave has different characteristics. We managed to control the spread for the 1st wave. So they need to figure out a different plan for the next wave.
    There is no one silver bullet.

    Its manageable -- we had like 90+ people after 2 months of the crap. That's pretty damn low -- a success case by any global standards. Kept it manageable. We were #2 in the world at one stage -- the joke here was that at least we are getting a silver medal for something.

    But the virus spread globally. So now, we have to deal with a scenario that would entail different circumstances. Like in a startup's growth progression, you must recognise when to pivot.
     
  31. sglowrider

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    The key will be the citizens to self-manage for sustainability. No government how controlling or dictatorial or laisse faire can do it by themselves. That's why the other fist to the containment strategy has always been a communication/education strategy.
     
  32. sglowrider

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    Its not quite 100% sealing of her borders.

    My Gf was supposed to have been in China last weekend. But due to some local circumstances, she will delay it till the end of March. Then she will be holed up in a Shanghai hotel for two weeks as a mandatory precautionary measure (with the inevitable tests) set by the Chinese Gov't -- before being allowed to work on the new project (Arctic LNG) there in Tianjin, outside Beijing.
     
  33. Marvin the Martian

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    There is one other hope that may be faster than vaccine, treatment. Since vaccines go into all the populace, the testing cannot be short circuited. A treatment can be out faster than 18 months as it would only go to those infected and in high risk. But I am sure that is months away, even assuming there is a treatment that works sufficiently well.
     
  34. sglowrider

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    At indications is that its at least a year away.
     
  35. Marvin the Martian

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    Yep, the best we can hope for is shaving 4 months off.
     
  36. Spartans9312

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    The question is , can we believe them?
     
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  37. 76-1

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    The answer to that one is unequivocally NO.
     
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  38. sglowrider

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    Of course, when Fox News is your purveyors of truth.

    The numbers coming out are WHO numbers too since they are working jointly there. But I assume you dont trust WHO numbers since they are part of the UN.
     
  39. Spartans9312

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    I'm glad that you are so confident in the numbers released by the Chinese Govt.
     
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  40. sglowrider

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    As much as I am with the crap out of Fox. Whats the difference?

    The latest from American Pravda:








    Glasshouse?!
     
    40 sglowrider, Mar 19, 2020
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2020
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