[ExI] The USA is number one!

Dave Sill sparge at gmail.com
Mon Apr 13 17:16:08 UTC 2020

On Mon, Apr 13, 2020 at 12:13 PM Dylan Distasio via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> US deaths will likely total around ~60K based on current estimates.  While
> anyone personally impacted is the victim of a terrible tragedy, those
> numbers still add up to a bad flu season, like it or not, and we should be
> asking ourselves how much economic damage we are going to tolerate in
> flattening the curve, and how many liberties we are willing to lose.

Whatever the tally, it's likely lower than it would have been without the
shutdowns and social distancing. And lacking a crystal ball, how could we
know at the beginning the cost/benefit of various preventive actions? Flu
is a known quantity. We have vaccines. We know what it can do and we try to
minimize it. C-19 was an unknown--and still is, for the most part.

Once the healthcare system is better prepared to deal with this, we should
> be letting this thing burn itself out in the general population with those
> at highest risk taking more extraordinary steps to remain safe.

There are a LOT of lessons to be learned from this. Let's hope we learn
some of them.

Former list member Robin Hanson has been a big proponent of letting
volunteers catch C-19 under controlled circumstances and isolated until
they're recovered, like variolation was done for smallpox before there was
a vaccine. Having plans for that in place *before* an outbreak could save
many lives in the next pandemic.

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