Jump to content

Take the Shutdown Skeptics Seriously

Disasters   (300 Views | 8 Replies)

Emergent has 25 years experience .

9 Followers; 2 Articles; 68,247 Profile Views; 3,104 Posts

https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/05/take-shutdown-skeptics-seriously/611419/

This article from the Atlantic is a rational and common-sense explanation of the dangers of shutting down the economy. Those who are for reopening the economy definitely care about human life, but envision worse consequences from economic collapse than from Covid.

The worry is that the dangers of the economic shutdown are worse than this terrible virus. The article describes how the Great Depression set the stage  for the catastrophe of World War II. That led to more than 70 million deaths.

It's easy to look at events, such as this pandemic, in a vacuum. But, I think we need to look at the larger picture. I belive that we are creating a bigger problem by shutting down society, and that the risk is greater than the benefit.

Quote

The general point is that minimizing the number of COVID-19 deaths today or a month from now or six months from now may or may not minimize the human costs of the pandemic when the full spectrum of human consequences is considered. The last global depression created conditions for a catastrophic world war that killed roughly 75 to 80 million people. Is that a possibility? The downside risks and costs of every approach are real, frightening, and depressing, no matter how little one thinks of reopening now.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

lifelearningrn has 6 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in School Nursing.

2,385 Posts; 25,099 Profile Views

An opinion piece. There are many others.  The truth is we don't KNOW how this is going to play out. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

332 Posts; 4,368 Profile Views

There isn't a right answer.  Everyone loses no matter the choices that we make.  I had 2 restaurant jobs before this happened - both are still closed.  One has lost over a half million dollars since they were forced to close prior to their busiest day of the year (St. Patricks Day) not counting the $25k they lost on that day alone.  Many of the employees who worked for these companies have already voiced their opinions that they will not come back until ..... insert a myriad of reasons - some logical - some not (ie one person said they were not coming back until they can bring their 50# dog to work everyday because they can't leave them home alone now - this person is a server.  Its illegal in our state to have a dog inside a restaurant unless it is a service dog - not a therapy dog - a service dog - which it isn't).  

Wasn't the purpose of flattening the curve to not overwhelm our hospital systems?  It seems we have gone from trying to provide a good level of service and be able to take care of the greatest number of patients, to trying to achieve a zero death rate.  By no means am I saying that I want anyone to die, but I don't want people to die from car wrecks, train derailments, airplane crashes, workplace violence or suicide either.  We can't prevent every death.  I feel like at some point we lost our direction on what the initial goal was and now everyone has their idea of what is best moving forward.  It is dividing us and making things worse - not better.

I absolutely do not know what the answer is, but our children needed more time in the trees and less time with their screens before this pandemic happened.  This doesn't help get our children outside and it isn't helping them develop interpersonal relationships for the long run.

I do not intend to be part of the problem, but I don't know how to be part of the solution either.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Emergent has 25 years experience.

9 Followers; 2 Articles; 3,104 Posts; 68,247 Profile Views

45 minutes ago, lifelearningrn said:

An opinion piece. There are many others.  The truth is we don't KNOW how this is going to play out. 

LOL, not much of a contribution to this discussion. You stated the obvious, that this is an opinion piece.

The Atlantic is a fine, respected, mainstream publication. If you aren't interested in reading the article there, because there are many other articles and opinions, that's fine with me.

 I happen to be interested in this article. It has important insights that I thought worth sharing here.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

lifelearningrn has 6 years experience as a BSN, RN and specializes in School Nursing.

2,385 Posts; 25,099 Profile Views

51 minutes ago, Emergent said:

LOL, not much of a contribution to this discussion. You stated the obvious, that this is an opinion piece.

The Atlantic is a fine, respected, mainstream publication. If you aren't interested in reading the article there, because there are many other articles and opinions, that's fine with me.

 I happen to be interested in this article. It has important insights that I thought worth sharing here.

 

I read the article. It's an opinion piece, nothing more.  Never in the history have entire countries shut down to contain a pandemic. We don't know if it is going to have a long term positive or long term negative result. Finding editorials to support your personal opinion is easy to do. Even in respected publications. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

LibraSunCNM has 10 years experience as a MSN and specializes in OB.

1,404 Posts; 25,897 Profile Views

I agree with the author for the most part.  The frustrating part is how much we simply don't know and how there's no way to find out the answers without some trial and error, which involves loss of human life.  It's terrible but there's nothing we can do---we don't have a crystal ball and research and development into vaccines and treatments is gonna take a long time.  

There are extremists on both sides of the argument, but honestly most people I've met support slow but rational easing back into normal life to see how things go.  The mayor of my moderately sized metro area has laid out what I think is a reasonable plan for ending the current "Safer at Home" restrictions, involving phases that slowly increase the amount of openings, as well as reverting back to the restrictions of the prior phase if there are sharp spikes in the infection rate.  We simply haven't been hit super hard where I live, and while I personally plan to keep staying home for the most part because I'm due with my 2nd baby any moment, I think we need to at least try it out and see what happens.  Maybe that's wishful thinking on my part?  

That being said, my feelings about reopening in no way diminish my simultaneous feelings of utter disgust for our current presidential administration, how it has handled the crisis, how American workers are treated as a whole, and how pathetically inadequate our social safety nets are in this country.  Those are separate issues that I also feel strongly about, and I thought Nicholas Kristof wrote a nice op/ed highlighting the differences in how our country has let down its labor force compared to our friends in Scandinavia.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/08/opinion/Sunday/us-denmark-economy.html?searchResultPosition=2

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Emergent has 25 years experience.

9 Followers; 2 Articles; 3,104 Posts; 68,247 Profile Views

9 minutes ago, lifelearningrn said:

I read the article. It's an opinion piece, nothing more.  Never in the history have entire countries shut down to contain a pandemic. We don't know if it is going to have a long term positive or long term negative result. Finding editorials to support your personal opinion is easy to do. Even in respected publications. 

I found this article because my favorite medical commentator ZDoggMD shared it. He is very respected by many nurses, and an advocate for common sense in medicine

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

440 Posts; 5,639 Profile Views

Good article.

 

I tend to reflexively get defensive when people advocate reopening because that camp so often either buys into crackpot theories or seriously downplays the loss of life caused by covid-19 and/or the damage it does to acute care and critical care infrastructure across the board. However an honest discussion of the risks of continued economic shutdown that doesn't rely on falsehoods is a welcome change. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Daisy4RN has 20 years experience and specializes in Travel, Home Health, Med-Surg.

1 Follower; 1 Article; 1,381 Posts; 8,216 Profile Views

I also agree that keeping everything shut down is going to cause more harm in the long run. We have flattened the curve, we know a little more about the virus and how to protect ourselves and now is the time to start the slow, regional opening. There are way too many people already suffering financially and will continue to do so for a very long time. The country as a whole will also be paying the price financially for a very long time. It is unsustainable to keep everything shut down and dolling out more and more money that we all are going to be paying for one way or another. Not to mention how it will leave our Country positionaly (ie vulnerable).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
×

This site uses cookies. By using this site, you consent to the placement of these cookies. Read our Privacy, Cookies, and Terms of Service Policies to learn more.