We’ve been warned – the death of the US economy is a possibility if action isn’t taken soon.
The media has responded with outrage to President Trump’s admonition that the cure cannot be allowed to be worse than the disease – a simple warning that canceling the entire U.S. economy by shutting it down for months would cause more death and suffering than the virus itself.
It’s par for the course for the media. But wiser voices are agreeing with the President.
Barry Sternlicht, founder of Starwood Capital, points out that the US is in danger of committing economic suicide if the recommendations of months or years of economic shutdowns continue.
‘Financial suicide… that also has to come into the equation, and that’s where I kind of agree with the president… you cannot kill the economy… we don’t have enough money to fix it.’
The media and Democrats have made a career out of financial illiteracy, but the reality is that no amount of stimulus can save the US economy from months of disruption. We’re a couple of weeks into this, and the damage has been so extensive that we’ve been forced to pass a 2 trillion rescue package, coupled with over 4 trillion dollars of other interventions.
Widespread societal collapse is the only outcome of a shutdown that extends into 2021.
There has to be a middle ground: some as yet undetermined period of shutdown, lasting weeks or perhaps 1-2 months, followed by a cautious and targeted partial shutdown that emphasizes testing, tracking, and protection of vulnerable groups.
There’s no perfect answer. This is a terrible dilemma for any leader to face, and the media’s slavish desire to bring Trump down will ensure that no matter his course, he will be criticized unfairly. But Trump has thus far shown flexibility, energy, and initiative in his management of the crisis, and he’s never been one to back down from criticism, unfair or not.
It remains to be seen whether the American people will give him credit for it.