US economists now forecast ‘Great Depression II’ – Was it worth it?

Several leading US economists are now predicting a second ‘great depression’ and believe a so-called V-shaped recession is impossible.

In fact, Chris Rupkey, chief financial economist at MUFG Union Bank, said: ‘At this point it would take a miracle to keep this recession from turning into the Great Depression II.’

‘Net, net, jobless claims are warning that the worst isn’t over yet for the American economy with businesses and consumers alike being sucked down into the abyss of the pandemic recession.’ He claimed, ‘the risks to the outlook are that the economy is digging itself such a big deep hole that its ill become harder to climb back out of it.’

One of the only ones that has a contrarian view is Apple CEO Tim Cook, who still predicts a V-shaped recovery for the U.S. economy following the covid-19 outbreak.

With all the figures that are rolling in and approximately 26 million Americans who have filed for jobless aid in five weeks, you have to wonder: was it all worth it?

My point is, when looking at the figures from Johns Hopkins university, the total worldwide death rate at this point is some 211,000 people. The total number of worldwide deaths last year was a bit short of 55 million.

If you put that in perspective, the 211,000 people that have thus far died from Covid-19 will probably not change the expected number of deaths for 2020, it will simply mean that some people died a few months earlier than they should have.

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Although I regret the exceptions like the several youngsters and even children who have died from the disease, I believe that they represent less than 1% of the total mortality rate of this virus which has mainly hit the elderly.

If I see the original charts that we have flattened and understand that the total world is faced with years of unemployment and economic doom and gloom, I sometimes wonder whether continuing everything like before would not have been better?

My sympathy goes to the healthcare workers who would have been overrun, but won’t they have to deal with more diseases and poverty-stricken citizens in poor health soon as the economy will sit on its ass for years to come?

I am a strong believer in the argument made by Big Short star Dr Michael Burry, who joined twitter earlier this month to simply argue against the lockdowns.

“Universal stay-at-home is the most devastating economic force in modern history,” Burry wrote in an email to Bloomberg News earlier this month.

“And it is man-made. It very suddenly reverses the gains of underprivileged groups, kills and creates drug addicts, beats and terrorizes women and children in violent now-jobless households, and more. It bleeds deep anguish and suicide.”

It remains to be seen whether at the end of this year we will not simply ask the same question when looking at Sweden, a country that ordered no lockdowns, and whose internal economy is still humming.

Their senior epidemiologist, Dr Johan Giesecke, explained it in the clearest of terms: ‘At least 50% of the population of both the UK and Sweden will be shown to have already had the disease when mass antibody testing becomes available.’

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