Talk about quick action. The coronavirus crisis has been with us for just three months, and the American Institute for Economic Research (Great Barrington, Massachusetts) already has a book available from Amazon. It’s Coronavirus and Economic Crisis, with 24 contributors and edited by Peter C. Earle.
AIER summarizes the main takeaways of the book:
- The lack of preparation in the U.S. for this has exposed the egregious failings of the regulatory state in every area: testing, research, hospital capacity, medical supplies, and medical services generally;
- The information dearth – the lack of on-the-ground facts due to testing failures – created a void filled by statistical models with wildly divergent predictions, the worst of which have been seized on by the media;
- The response by many governments has not been intelligent but rather risk averse in the extreme and highly coercive, amounting to a giant yell for everyone to stop doing everything, contradicting the pleas of medical professionals and economists, thus fueling an epic collapse in employment and production;
- The stimulus packages intended to save the economy have been hijacked by political interests and pressure groups who are feeding at the public trough in brazen and highly politicized ways, and the same is true for the monetary response;
- The long-term solution to all the meltdowns we are seeing around us is to regain confidence in market signaling and the capacity of a free society to solve medical, social, and economic problems better than government power.
I haven’t read it yet, but I’ve ordered it (even Amazon Prime doesn’t promise one- or two-day delivery during this crisis) and it sounds promising and much needed.