Publisher’s note: after a week’s hiatus, the Price of Liberty is back! Travel and work prevented updates, but we now resume commentary. Please share with your friends as we seek additional readers.
On to the commentary.
The death toll continues to climb in Red China, and disease and deaths spread to Hong Kong, South Korea, Iran, and… Italy? Yep! More and more people, despite the health bureaucrats’ optimistic claims, are pointing out that this novel coronavirus outbreak is meeting the criteria for a pandemic. As with past pandemics, there will no doubt be waves of infection sweeping the world.
So far (and assuming that the Chinese are even partially telling the truth), this does not seem to be as lethal as previous pandemics, such as the “Spanish flu” of 1918 or the SARS outbreak in 2003. Or the Black Death in medieval times. Whether this is because of better supportive treatment, better health conditions (especially for the elderly and very young) or the virus itself, this is good news.
However, the real impact on the world may not be massive numbers of sick people or large numbers of people dying prematurely.
Rather, it is the economic and political impact of the coronavirus, Beer Flu, that is of greatest concern.
The quarantine in China, extended shutting down of industry, local and regional shortages of supplies – including medicines, food, and emergency supplies, has dealt a strong blow to the Communist nation’s economy. In many ways, the capitalist camouflage is being ripped off the socialist iron gauntlet. Even the likes of Communist Fedgov POTUS candidate Bernie Sanders has admitted that China has grown “more authoritarian.”
Despite claims by the likes of George Gilder and others (especially American military brass), China is not likely to be able to challenge the FedGov – or even its neighbors like Taiwan and the Philippines. Even if the leadership in Beijing seek that to distract their people. Rather, the potential for China to collapse in on itself is growing.
Given the state of the world’s economy today, when China gets the flu, the world gets a fever. Although the Baltic index (which measures worldwide shipping) is supposedly slowly rising, the actual tonnages being shipped worldwide are continuing to drop, as China no longer has manufactured products to ship to the rest of the world. This in turn is making for slowdowns in manufacturing elsewhere – including the East and South Asian countries trying to make up for production to supply the United States (as a result of Trump’s trade war with China).
Air travel is off, severely, and expected to get worse. Outbreaks in Italy, Iran, and Japan are hitting travel hard. Overall, the rest of the world is fearful of strong negative impact on industrial activity, as in Europe. Even such industries as fashions and movies are already retracting. It is no wonder that the Dow Jones took its third biggest hit in history on Monday, dropping 1,000 points. (As I write this on Tuesday morning, the DJ is down another 200 points and continuing to drop.) That is a “loss” of more than A TRILLION DOLLARS of “value” in about 30 hours.
Again, it is no surprise that the pundits are badly worried. As are people all over the place. Oil prices (driven in part by the drop of demand by China, air travel, and other industrial slowdowns) are bouncing but seem to be dropping fairly rapidly. That, lack of raw materials, lack of imports, and other factors, do NOT look good for the economy of much of the Fifty States.
Which in turn presents the risk of Trump losing this year’s election. Bad as he is in so many ways, the options are far worse. Especially now with Bernie Sanders, homegrown American Communist, as the forerunner for his replacement. The last several decades, it has been the economy that has most influenced voters to change horses, and one of the strongest indicators of a second Trump term has been the growing American economy.
The real panic of Democrats – at least their insider leadership and the more moderate Democratic version of statists – is obvious. The most extreme Bernistas are getting more and more vocal, and even Democrats are fearing an American version of Venezuela’s Chavez, Cuba’s Castro, or a dozen other socialist/communist progressive regimes in just the last fifty years. They may still consider Trump to be Hitler, but they may be viewing Sanders as being a new Stalin.
So politically, at least the Fifty States is sliding into a dangerous situation, and the Beer Flu is pushing that. Even if the coronavirus does not become even a minor epidemic in the Fifty States, we cannot avoid the negative impact.
However, Europe is already ailing, economically and politically, and the Beer Flu is therefore going to have a more severe impact. Losing the UK was bad enough. The Muslim invasion and growing occupation continues, although it rarely shows up in the news. Spain’s falling apart progresses. The financial disasters in the PIGS (Portugal, Italy, Greece, and Spain) are still grinding away.
Southwest Asia (the Middle East) is also vulnerable: the new Russian-Turkish-Syrian fighting creates more opportunity for trouble. The war in Yemen continues. Fighting continues in Mesopotamia and Afghanistan. And to the east, tensions get stronger between India and Pakistan. Economic impacts of Beer Flu are likely to make matters worse.
All things considered, the Fifty States and the tattered British Commonwealth are best situated to make it through the Beer flu pandemic and indeed to benefit from it. IF we can avoid going the socialist-communist route, and work to regain our liberty.
More on that later.