The Corvid-19 virus has and continues to wreck our health and economic systems worldwide.
We see different responses around the world, some more successful than others. As we said earlier Totalitarian regimes seem to get better and faster results because their citizens are more likely to do as they are told.
China is an interesting example of regimented responses which confined the spread of the virus and at the same time was able to continue its economy in Shanghai, Beijing and other regions. Indeed today China is the biggest supplier of protective equipment for health workers in the world. Its economy is still growing albeit at a slower rate.
Lesson one, I guess is ‘do as you’re told’ even if you don’t quite believe it.
Looking forward as the world economy collapses, eventually there will be a recovery of sorts mainly by Governments and the World Bank ploughing Trillions of dollars into all the coffers in the world.
What happened last time under a much less punitive collapse at the turn of the century, the banks and the dealers recovered first and the ‘man in the street’ came a distant second.
This cannot happen again, because the whole basis of economic growth will have changed. It will have changed with the virtual end of the ‘shopping centre’, ‘the office’ and of course with beginning of the end of the oil based energy sector, and a whole new sector of renewable energy. Unemployment at least in the short term will be greater than experienced since the great depression.
Whilst the totalitarian regimes will recover faster, Western democracies will struggle to adjust, especially if the fiscal and economic readjustments are not what I would style as socially balanced.
If western liberalism is to survive, it must prove itself flexible in balancing corporate and social needs. This is unlikely to come about easily in the USA, the world’s biggest economy. There is great danger that the USA may lurch further to the right, I believe with dreadful consequences.
The European and UK systems will adjust more easily but that does not preclude huge difficulties for the EU.
Looking in the mirror of the next ten years it is hard not to see China leading the world both economically and politically. Beware, and be ready!