COVID and Tradeoffs
My frequent co-author Charley Hooper, Stanford epidemiologist and economist Jay Bhattacharya, and I met for lunch in Palo Alto on Friday. See pic above.
Not surprisingly, much of what we discussed was the ways in which Twitter, at the behest of various major players, tried to shut Jay down. He was so often accused of wanting to kill people and it seemed to be for at least one of the three reasons: (1) he pointed out that young children were at an extremely low risk from Covid and, therefore, there was little basis for shutting down schools; (2) he noted that so few economists were pointing out one of the most basic principles in economics–TANSTAAFL, which means there are tradeoffs; and (3) he reminded people that we do develop immunity to coronaviruses.
If people, including Anthony Fauci and Francis Collins, hadn’t tried so hard to shut him down, just think how different the discussion might have gone.
Fortunately, Jay’s head is, in the words of one of my two favorite poems, “Invictus” (which was also the favorite poem of Nelson Mandela), “bloody, but unbowed.”