While the COVID-19 scare has forced many businesses to close, politicians around the world are having a field day. The people are scared, and once again seem more than willing to hand over their economic freedom in the name of safety. Ostensibly, the rationale of “lives not livelihoods” is beneath this stripping away of our liberties. It is only “temporary,” we are told – just as the income tax and PATRIOT Act - were merely temporary measures to address extraordinary circumstances of WWII and 9/11 respectively.
In a recent piece, “An Epidemic Big Enough to Accommodate Everyone’s Wish List,” (3/18/20) Reason.com Senior Editor Jacob Sullum notes how politicians from both parties are using the crisis to advance their agenda. Bernie Sanders is pushing Medicare-for-All, while Trump doubles down on his border wall.
In doing so, government is complicit with the mainstream media, which happily spits out the most dire scenarios – reporting on every new case as proof the sky is falling while ignoring new data suggesting that we are overreacting.
In response, I have limited my information intake to a select trusted group and am calm, relaxed, optimistic, and comfortable in the conclusions and observations I have made. Being selective has made a profound difference in how I feel about the world and the confidence I have in my own decision making.
I invite you to try it. A few important reminders:
- Newly discovered cases ≠ new cases
- Mainstream media hijacks our emotions to sell us advertisements
- "Temporary" restrictions on freedom are never temporary
- Government always thinks about how to expand its power at the expense of the people during times of crisis.
Jacob Sullum has been particularly prolific – covering all angles of the virus, from the unrealistic worst-case scenarios to the constitutional considerations of banning non-essential business.
Jacob joined me for the full hour to discuss whether the aggressive control measure against COVID-19 are worth it. He’ll also help explain why politicians – in the words of Rahm Emanuel – “never let a good crisis go to waste.”
Jacob’s writings over the past few weeks also reveal Governor Andrew Cuomo as the political opportunist par excellence, but he has plenty of competition.
To get the complete picture (without the hysteria), join my conversation with Jacob Sullum, and learn my secret to staying sane as a libertarian on lockdown – this Sunday, 8-9am PACIFIC – on the show of ideas, not attitude.
Reason Articles by Jacob Sullum
- Is Preventing COVID-19 Deaths Worth a Severe Recession? The Answer Depends on Controversial Assumptions About the Epidemic’s Lethality.
- Is Wearing a Face Mask in Public To Ward Off COVID-19 a Crime?
- Do Gun Dealers Count As ‘Essential’ Businesses That Can Stay Open Under COVID-19 Lockdowns?
- Will Aggressive COVID-19 Control Measures Cost More Than They Are Worth?‘The Fear, the Panic, Is a Bigger Problem Than the Virus,’ Says New York’s Governor
- If COVID-19 Killed 1.4% of People With Symptoms in Wuhan, the Overall Fatality Rate Is Likely to Be Much Lower Than People Feared
- ‘We’re All in Quarantine Now,’ Says Andrew Cuomo, Who Two Days Ago Said That Was Out of the Question
- Two Reasons the Worst-Case Scenarios for COVID-19 Seem Unrealistic
Epidemiology and Overreaction
- In the coronavirus pandemic, we're making decisions without reliable data By JOHN P.A. IOANNIDIS | MARCH 17, 2020
- How Mass Hysteria Is Making Coronavirus Worse Than It Actually Is - Worth By Joon Yun, March 2, 2020
- We Will Regret Not Taking the Economic Effects of Mass Quarantine More Seriously – Reason.com by Nick Gillespie
- Donald Boudreaux: Globalization, wealth & health | TribLIVE.com
- Coronavirus and Politicians vs. the Economy | Cato @ Liberty by Chris Edwards
- Beware of Panic Policymaking – AIER by Veronique de Rugy