COVID Impact Journal

59 thoughts
last posted May 7, 2021, 4:33 p.m.

29 earlier thoughts


Prognostication Recap

From my March 17 guesses:

  • “The crisis will increase in severity through at least July, driven by severe healthcare shortages” — I think I missed this one. I also did not account for the locality of outbreaks; I was at that point still thinking of the US as a whole. So the reality was more mixed. Capacity-driven crises did hit in some places (New York) but were avoided in others. Both here in Minnesota and as a whole, the US has seen its case load level off and decline, but it remains much, much worse than the EU, which peaked at the same time and same level as we did in April.
  • “No measure big enough to offset major economic downturn will be able to pass in Congress…lots of unemployment and no relief” — In fact some sizeable relief did pass that may have so far spared us the worst of the pain. But since the unemployment supports are set to expire at the end of next month, (and it seems very doutbful that there will exist the political will to extend them), we might have just pushed the worst pain out to Aug–Sep. Unemployment claims are declining but still extremely hugely high. So I think this may yet prove true.
  • “If we get the disease, and the public mood, under control before June, Trump is reelected in November…If we get there between June and September, Trump loses in November” — Obviously the election hasn't happened yet. But I think these predictions were framed around some incorrect assumptions: 1) that public mood would improve in concert with our actual control of the disease spread; 2) a strictly linear picture of improvement, and 3) no other factors (civil rights protests, anyone?). What actually happened was that the atmosphere of fear and dread evaporated, but there was actually no change in our actual control over it. The two are not in any way linked.

29 later thoughts