It is not at all unusual for politicians to kick the can down the road.
How many times have we heard our congressional representatives unveil plans that will make social security solvent in 2034, relieve on our dependence on oil by 2045, balance our budget by 2027, stop the oceans from rising by 2038, etcetera, etcetera…
And the great irony of this approach? They always assume things will be static, just like they are today, when the coronavirus pandemic, and subsequent reaction, should teach us just the opposite.
Consider our plan to confront this pandemic. We decided to lock everyone in their houses and keep them away from one another. And we did this before we had any idea just how deadly (or not) this virus may be.
Why did we do this? We did this to “flatten the curve.” That doesn’t mean preventing any death. That just means keeping our hospitals from being overrun. And they’re not. Not even close (except for New York, which got very close). But they are the outlier.
So, once we flatten the curve, then what? We’re going to slowly come out of hiding to do what? While we’ve all been in lockdown, the virus didn’t just go away. All we did was delay the inevitable.
When we get back to it, the virus will continue to make its way through the population. And then whoever is going to get it and not show symptoms, show symptoms, need hospitalization, or even die, will do so. Just a little bit later.
There’s no stopping it. But fortunately, there is evidence, and intuition, to suggest this virus was here much earlier than we’re giving it credit for. It stands to reason that this virus was hear as early as December – at least on the West Coast. If that’s true, people were already getting it, spreading it, and recovering from it.
And look at the death tolls in Washington and California. They’re not even close to New York.
Like everything that involves government, we use projections that are always wrong to justify pushing useful action down the road. Only this time, the results are immediate, and deadly.
This time, we’re destroying our economy, our way of life, and potentially the last bastion of freedom in the world. I would have hoped that would be worth fighting for.
At one time, “give me liberty or give me death,” was one of our cultural underpinnings. I hope that’s not morphing to “take my freedom and give me fear of death.”