06 Mar There Will Be a Coronavirus-induced Downturn – And a Recovery
When airlines are cutting back on flights, when cruise lines are canceling cruises, when shipyard traffic drops significantly, when factories in China are ‘down’ for a month or more, all in response to or in anticipation of coronavirus ripple effects—there is going to be an economic downturn in the coming months. That’s pretty much a ‘duh’; how could there not be a downturn when all of these factors are heading south at the same time?
More specifically, there will be layoffs in affected industries, and the Fed acting to lower interest rates isn’t going to change that fact. The seemingly never-ending, consecutive monthly reports of jobs growth and lower unemployment rates will in fact end.
Further, in this election year, the MSM and every leftist and anti-Trumper on the planet will be looking for ways to pin the downturn on President Trump and his trade policies, healthcare policies, tax policies, etc., etc., ad infinitum.
Even if the virus shows signs of slowing or otherwise being contained, these voices will dismiss any positive news and relentlessly project that things will get worse and worse until at least November 3rd. And if the virus should actually grow in impact, full-scale panic—including the need to change the occupant of the White House—will be stridently advocated as the only reasonable response.
So…point one: don’t be even mildly surprised at the many variations of “Trump’s fault!” headlines coming your way in the next several months. And don’t buy them.
Sadly, there are segments of the American population—notably many millennials who believe history began when they were born—who are going to be prone to buy them, and panic.
The stories of tearful Greenpeace solicitors and DNC staffers certain they will die from climate change look like SNL skits until one realizes just how depressingly sincere these young people are. These types are ripe to panic about a virus; all they think they know about viruses is what they have seen in movies or at the most alarmist websites they can find.
But Americans as a whole are smarter and made of heartier stuff than the left believes, and certainly than hapless millennials. They’ve faced adversity in many forms; they do not humor ‘end of the world’ hysteria; they keep on keepin’ on. There may be a lot they don’t know or understand about the coronavirus, and who knows—maybe the coronavirus will in fact turn out to be a diabolical Chinese communist bio-weapon intended to induce global panic and American collapse.
The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor used more conventional weapons, but had the same intent. And it didn’t kill tens of the elderly but thousands of America’s finest. The panic and surrender/collapse option was on the table then, too. Americans didn’t choose it then, and they won’t choose it now. They have an implicit faith that life goes on, that life is purposeful, that adversity in any form is to be overcome, not yielded to.
This is the essence of the ingrained, can-do American spirit; it will prevail over the coronavirus—whatever it is; and it will drive a recovery from any economic downturn.
Many have noted that one silver lining of the coronavirus will be the accelerating reversal of American ‘outsourcing’ to China—with the necessary consequence of even more manufacturing jobs returning to or newly arising in America.
Maybe another, even brighter silver lining will be a broader reawakening to the can-do American spirit—and a corresponding decline of the shallow everything-is-about-who-gains-and-who-loses-politically ethos that has dominated media discourse over several decades, and gone into hyper-drive in the last 10+ years.
That last silver lining can sound Pollyanna in 2020. But it’s not. Some ideas are right ideas that are timeless and relevant—in 1776, 1861, 1914, 1941, 1989 and 2020.
So…point two: adversity does not necessitate panic; it demands intelligent determination and resilience—and these will drive triumph and recovery.
President Trump seems to have internalized these ideas, and is likely to emerge from this crisis stronger than ever. The American people will, too. KAG!