Coronavirus

Georgia Is Right To Reopen, but Will That Actually Restart Its Economy?

The kill switch to the economy was easy to find. The "on" button may be impossible to locate.

|

The societal lockdown due to the novel coronavirus has shown that the U.S. economy definitely has a kill switch. As Georgia begins to lift its restrictions on "non-essential" businesses tomorrow, we're going to find out whether the economy has anything resembling an on switch.

Over the past five weeks, 26.5 million Americans have filed for unemployment, suggesting a real unemployment rate of nearly 21 percent, the highest since 1934. By the first week of April, according to Moody's Analytics, "U.S. daily output has fallen roughly 29 percent, compared with the first week of March, just before the spate of closures" caused by shelter-in-place orders affecting "8 in 10 U.S. counties."

If the kill switch was easy to find, it's going to be tough as hell to restart the economy or even keep it staggering along at its current anemic pace. A new study from economists Jonathan Dingel and Brent Neiman at the University of Chicago finds that only about "37 percent of U.S. jobs can plausibly be performed at home," helping to explain the economic wreckage caused by nearly universal lockdowns. Nearly two-thirds of workers are already out of luck, and that's before slack demand starts to threaten the bottom lines of companies employing those lucky few who can work from home.

Which brings us to the controversial decision of Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) to reopen parts of his state's economy. His decision has been criticized by both medical experts and President Donald Trump, but effective tomorrow,

Employees at "gyms, fitness centers, bowling alleys, body art studios," as well as "barbers, cosmetologists, hair designers, nail care artists, estheticians, their respective schools & massage therapists," will be allowed to return to work…but will have to operate under restrictions.

And come Monday, "sit-down restaurants, theaters, and private social clubs will be allowed to reopen," also subject to social-distancing and other restrictions.

This is, I think, not simply an eminently defensible decision from a libertarian position, but a good one. Without forcing anyone to do anything they don't want to, it transfers power to individual businesses, workers, and residents and gives them more choices to make their own decisions. Some businesses in Georgia will reopen and others won't. Hospitals and other treatment centers have had time and experience to prepare for crushes that have mostly failed to come to pass, in no small part due to lockdown orders. In late March, for instance, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said that his state of New York, the epicenter of the pandemic in the United States, would need as many as 40,000 ventilators while having only 12,000 on hand. By April 17, reports National Review's Kyle Smith, Cuomo said he "has so many ventilators he is giving them away: On April 15, he said he was sending 100 of them to Michigan and 50 to Maryland. On April 16, he announced he was sending 100 to New Jersey."

The rush to mandatory lockdowns—as opposed to calls for voluntary forms of social distancing and other measures to reduce the rate and spread of infection—that took place a little more than a month ago obscured serious discussions about their efficacy. "Our historical experience with mandatory quarantines and mass quarantines and cordons is just not good, it's not effective," a senior scholar at Johns Hopkins University told STAT just before San Francisco announced its early shelter-in-place order in mid-March. If and when Georgia, which has a relatively low death rate of 8 per 100,000 residents, or other states that start to reopen their economies are hit by waves of new infections that require hospitalization, they will be in a position to respond.

But even as Georgia moves to lift restrictions on "non-essential" businesses tomorrow, it's unclear how employers, employees, and customers are likely to act. The example of movie theaters illustrates the difficult road ahead. Variety reports that "exhibition insiders stress that it would be nearly impossible for most major chains to start business back up by next week." That's because they have been shuttered for more than a month, necessitating cleaning, prep, and retraining of workers. Venues will have to abide by rules limiting gathering to 10 or fewer people while observing social-distancing rules that will limit the ability of theaters to earn back basic operating expenses. And there's also a question of what movies will be shown, since most studios have themselves shut down or gone to a skeleton crew.

Hollywood studios aren't releasing new movies for at least a month, when Universal's comedy The King of Staten Island opens on June 19 and Warner Bros.' sci-fi thriller Tenet debuts on July 17. Almost all other films scheduled to release this summer have been shelved or postponed, except for Disney's live-action Mulan on July 24 and Warner Bros.' comic book adventure Wonder Woman 1984 on Aug. 14. That means even if exhibitors are able to turn the lights back on in some venues, there's not a lot of compelling product to offer. They would likely be forced to screen library titles and a few lower-budget indies.

Even more daunting is the unsettled issue of legal liability. It's unclear whether theaters (and other businesses) will be held responsible for illnesses claimed by either customers or employees.

Majorities of Americans say they will not feel comfortable eating out, going to malls, museums, concerts, and even church services for at least three months. Those attitudes are likely to change dramatically if and when deaths abate or surge, or when a vaccine is announced. But in the near term, they suggest that even when a state or city lifts its bans, the economy may well stay dormant for a long time to come. Although the public health dimension of the coronavirus pandemic has dominated the discussion so far, as time goes on, what analysts at The Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity call "the severe human cost of a prolonged economic shutdown" will come to occupy more and more of our attention.

NEXT: Trump Changes Course on Reopening the Economy After Georgia Governor Tries To Follow His Lead

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

    1. A pure opinion piece from a devout right-winger.

      1. I’d like to see at least one piece from a left-winger calling for ending the shutdown, or a right-winger calling to keep the shutdown going. The latter is probably more likely.

        1. Since progressives are devoutly totalitarian, you’re not going to see them calling to end the shutdown.

          1. Progressives are just a subset of the left-wing tribe. What about the rest of them?

            1. You’re easily the dumbest person here, eunuch, and your shilling for leftists is transparent.
              There is nothing on the left that isn’t progressivism/central planning

              1. Maybe you would call them silly utopians or useful idiots, but they do exist.
                And most of the right seems to be pretty OK with some degree of central planning.

                1. Ok, zeb, tell us a position/policy/proposal of the left that doesn’t trend toward totalitarianism or central planning…

                  1. The left is not a monolithic group, unlike Trumptards like you, who’s positions can be summed up in one bit of information. But to humor you, these are broadly considered left positions that align with libertiarian principles: ending or at least reducing the drug war, being antiwar, criminal justice reform, free speech (at least until the last 10 years), ending corporate welfare, easing immigration restrictions. I am not talking about politicians, but leftist intellectuals and activists.

                    1. //ending or at least reducing the drug war//

                      To replace it with a war on hydroxychloroquine.

                      //being antiwar//

                      And being in favor of war in Syria, Libya, and against Turkey to protect our irreplaceable Kurdish allies.

                      //criminal justice reform//

                      Except for men “credibly” accused of sexual assault, including Supreme Court nominees, in which case they can rot in a fucking cell, yesterday.

                      //free speech (at least until the last 10 years)//

                      First time you were honest, but progress is progress.

                      //ending corporate welfare//

                      By shilling for a complete government takeover of huge private sectors of the economy like healthcare and anyone that doesn’t bake cakes for faggots.

                      //easing immigration restrictions//

                      By eliminating all immigration laws, while mercilessly cheerleading for the annihilation of white Americans.

                      The Left. The lovely Left.

                    2. “these are broadly considered left positions that align with libertiarian principles:
                      ” ending or at least reducing the drug war,”
                      Legalized Marijuana in some states. They get a point for that. Absolutely 0 push to do so at the national level, though, and they had the power to do it. Then again, they do love to tax and have been the driving force against tobacco, which isn’t so fashionable right now. So sure, they’re more for drug legalization than the right generally – but they want to ban cigarettes, red meat, oil, and a host of other things. The left is wildly in favor of prohibition generally.

                      ” being antiwar,”
                      Lol
                      No need to address this one

                      ” criminal justice reform,”
                      Only in the form of equating all crimes and portraying criminals, even violent ones, as “victims”. They push indiscriminate bail reform that treats vehicular homicide, arson, and child molestation the same as shop lifting, possession, and unlicensed employment. And, of course, they want ever more laws creating ever more crimes, and routinely call for their politically disfavored groups to be locked up.

                      “free speech (at least until the last 10 years),”
                      It’s a small thing, but I give you a bit of credit for not even trying to die on this hill. And it’s been a lot longer than 10 years

                      “ending corporate welfare,”
                      LOL
                      Only the absolutely most superficial idiots can buy that

                      ” easing immigration restrictions.”
                      Yes, leftists want fewer immigration restrictions. In many places, they want none and want the State to treat aliens better than its own citizens. I guess this is libertarian in that area where libertarianism coincides with internationalist socialism and neocon globalism. Yay!

                      And yes, the left is pretty fucking monolithic. It’s fundamental to their philosophy dissent cannot be tolerated, and must be purged (as you see with folks like Dave Rubin). To the extent disagreement exists, it is difference of degree, not substance.

                      Your imagination of my beliefs and a conservative/Trump monolith is just that – imaginary. Though we are certainly unified in opposition to bigots and totalitarian lickspittles like yourself.

                  2. Well, left-anarchists for one. I think they are pretty goofy and inconsistent, but they do exist.
                    I think there are still a few left-liberal civil libertarians around.

                    1. I’ll give you anarchists, though I can’t think of any examples myself.
                      Unfortunately, throughout history anarchists have pretty much always just been another face, or phase, of communists – and have done well ushering them into power

          2. Sweden is “left” and no lockdown there, idiot.

            1. Good job, idiot, you found the one exception to the rule.

            2. Sweden is about 3,937 miles to right of New York City, geographically and politically.

          3. Some good news from those crazy right-wing nutjobs at teh BMJ: https://www.bmj.com/content/369/bmj.m1375

        2. I find it really depressing how much this has become a political divide.
          In my personal experience, I’ve talked to quite a few left leaning people who are nearly as opposed to lockdowns as I am.

          Even if a million people were plausibly going to die in the US, I would oppose it. No government should ever be allowed the power to lock up the entire population. It’s just not worth it. If a disease that is really dangerous enough to warrant shutting everything down comes along, people will lock themselves up.

          1. I agree, and I suspect there are others on the left who would as well–the same ones who opposed the privacy invasions post-9/11.

          2. word.

          3. It’s not political it’s a class divide Zeb. You have people who can do their jobs from home and are still collecting checks and everyone else. They don’t get it because they don’t have to right this second. When the shit finally comes for their job which is inevitable they still won’t understand how it happened.

            1. I know plenty of “lefties” that get it because they operate business’s and being a lefty where I live is almost essential to having a friend group.

            2. That’s probably a lot of it, you’re right. But there are a lot of people trying to make it political. Especially in coverage of protests.

              1. That’s the media. Because they are scum. Worst than scum. Think about this Zeb, how many news pieces have you seen about people who’ve lost their jobs or business’s? We have more unemployed people than in anytime in the last 80 years. You can’t throw a rock and hit a household that hasn’t been impacted. Where are the fucking human interest stories? I’ve seen maybe one or two. The rest are reported as straight fact segments.

                1. I don’t think there are going to be very many politicians who survive this politically. Shit they may be lucky to just be in unemployment lines with the rest of us when this finally ends.

                2. During the Gov shutdown we had countless interviews of people struggling to make ends meet over a fucking single missed paycheck. We’ve gone a fucking month of missed paychecks for millions and notta peep.

                  1. Good point

                3. Agree. This has finally pushed me over the edge to be a full-blown media-hater. They bear a huge responsibility for whipping up what I can only describe at this point as mass hysteria. They are shit.
                  And I keep asking, if the media covered a bad-ish flu season like they are covering covid, would it really look much different.

                4. I don’t know that it’s just the media. I’m in NYC and any suggestion out of mouth that maybe a nationwide lockdown was excessive is almost reflexively met with:

                  “Oh stop it with the science denying Trump bullshit. Nobody cares what that orange turd thinks. Try reading something other than Breitbart.”

                  9 times out of 10.

                  1. You’re in NYC which is arguably a legit crisis given the lack of actual hospital capacity there is. You’re still right but they at least have a case for a lockdown there albeit a dumb one still.

                    1. Anecdotal, but still, I’ve spoken to several healthcare practitioners (family members and friends) who have claimed (again, I have no way to independently verify) that the “capacity” crisis was largely self-created.

                      They say there have been far too many people hospitalized “as a precaution” even if their symptoms were not severe enough to have warranted hospitalization under normal circumstances. Apparently, one of the big criteria now being used to recommend hospitalization is blood in the phlegm – which is more often than not caused by coughing (in other words, the blood is not coming from the lungs, but from irritation in the throat).

                      And the problem ends up being that these people are getting admitted, given a bed in the hospital and getting monitored, sometimes for weeks at a time, only to be released with little to no specialized treatment. But this is happening, allegedly, on a fairly large scale. In other words, people are being hospitalized that don’t really need treatment because doctors and nurses are assuming the person who presents with relatively mild symptoms is very likely to get worse.

                      So, while there are definitely strains on the hospital system, my understanding is that a lot of it has to do with unnecessary hospitalizations because doctors are making some rather panic induced judgment calls. They don’t want to release potentially sick people into the community, and they don’t want to release someone who appeared relatively fine and then goes on to die from the virus.

                      Is it true? I don’t know. But I wouldn’t be surprised if this turns out to have been the case once we look back on all of this.

        3. So you’re fucking ignorant about Colorado’s governor? I mean this shit isnt hiding in some secret repository chipper. Plenty of Democrats are more worried about economic harm at this point.

          You are literally ignorant about every topic on here. You simply parrot the latest Reason headline without any inspection at all.

          1. To be fair, the wailing and gnashing of teeth from Karen Two Last Names and the manlets on the Colorado social media sites about Polis doing this are legion. Inevitably, these same accounts all have complaints about Republicans, Trump, or right-wingers.

            One wag ended up commenting that Polis triggered the left harder than any Republican could have.

        4. I am a liberal (emphasis on liberal and not the neoliberal progressive). And I want the shutdowns to end and leave the decision of voluntary lock down on the individual.
          First world nations’ medical infrastructure should be able to take such pandemics into stride without such extreme measures, and without killing the livelihoods of millions of people.

          Lockdowns don’t make sense from either the economic point of view nor from the humanitarian point of view. We all know the damage done to the economy. But what is not being reported is both the short term and long term damage with millions who lost their jobs whose healthcare was tied to their employment. Millions are being put at risk as not only would they not be able to afford treatment for diabetes, heart disease, cancer, etc., but they may not even be able to afford the preemptive measures for screening or treating these conditions before it gets too late.
          And not to mention homelessness, repossession of their cars and poverty. And less revenue to the government as not only they are not going to pay taxes but help will be needed for their support.

        5. Facebook is paying $530 Per day. Be a part of Facebook and start getting Extra Dollars every week from your home. JVc..I just got paid $8590 in my previous month……….,Visit Site

  1. Duh, obviously it’s a great decision because the governor is a Republican.

    1. The only reason there’s a Republican governor is because the election was stolen from the rightful winner, Stacey Abrams.

      #SheWon

    2. You’ve become a self parody at this point, sarc.
      And no, probably not a great idea to begin reopenings with massage parlors and tattoo shops.
      However, should there be no spike in cases or deaths, it’ll provide a pretty damn good argument for ending the closures just about everywhere else.
      Now please do try to come up with something interesting to say for a change

      1. It’s pretty sad too. When Mike Liarson was broken and left I enjoyed it. But him being broken and turning into Jeff is just annoying.

        1. Laursen was always Jeff! Now he haunts Quora, and I am sure he is also abused there. Morons always think they will benefit from a change in scenery, and are then surprised to learn that the background was never the problem.

      2. I would wager your average tattoo shop is more sanitized than most supermarkets.

  2. Barack Obama, Who Botched Two Pandemics, Criticizes Response to Coronavirus
    https://pjmedia.com/trending/barack-obama-who-botched-two-pandemics-criticizes-response-to-coronavirus/

    1. Obama botched them so bad no emergency $2.1 trillion stimulus (handout) was needed and no $490 billion follow on handout was needed.

      1. The handout was necessary because state governments shut down businesses.

        1. I get it.

          It’s Okay when Republicans do it.

          1. Not at all what was said, pedophile.
            D states led the way in shutdowns, and R governors followed.
            Now we’ll notice that this article is about a R governor reopening in the face of leftist opposition.
            I sincerely hope you’re lynched by your neighbors and you never again molest a child

          2. He literally told you the reason dumbfuck.

            1. Not a reason – an “excuse”. You fucking Trump Trash jump all over each other to justify the Big Government GOP as you lick Trump’s boots and unzip his fly.

              It is sickening that you litter up a Libertarian message board. You belong on Bratfart with the rest of the Trump Trash.

              1. States choke off their economies with social distancing and shelter in place orders.

                Shrieky-poo–“This is all Trump’s fault.”

                1. Fuck them. That is no good excuse for The Dotard’s $2.6 trillion welfare check.

                  1. Fuck off. If he didn’t sign off you’d be here crying about how Trump shut down the economy and refused to throw people a life line.

                    We know you’re going to be on whatever side of the issue is convenient, at that moment, to satisfy your TDS addled brain.

                  2. What are you complaining about, hicklib? You get to end your house arrest soon.

                  3. Nancypoo is trying to obstruct any and everything while she plows through that ice cream.

  3. But even as Georgia moves to lift restrictions on “non-essential” businesses tomorrow, it’s unclear how employers, employees, and customers are likely to act.

    You’re kidding me, right? People will act with an abundance of caution, by and large. This is not rocket science. We have all basically spent a month+ in quarantine. You think people really want to congregate in huge crowds in a theatre? Not a chance.

    People will reasonably demand that businesses take some precautions. And businesses that do not cater to what their customers want and expect, will lose customers and fold up.

    1. I think the shit will really hit the fan when all these businesses realize that people are not rushing back. Business will be down all across the board, and the real economic impact will sink in.

      1. Agreed.

        A 2 month-long Full Panic campaign on the part of the media and government will do that.

      2. Chipper, I am more optimistic than you.

        First, I don’t think we have had a ‘shut down’ as much as we have had a ‘slow down’. Most people are in fact working. Commerce is happening. Value is still being created.

        Second, I do think that face-to-face businesses like big box retail and restaurants/bars and sports venues are going to take a massive ‘hit’.

        Third, do not underestimate the flexibility and creativity and resilience of the American people. What we have here in this country is magical. We can do almost anything if we put our minds and efforts behind it.

        I have an enduring and unending faith in my fellow Americans.

        1. I think people are itching to get out. On the few warm days we have, the bike trails are filled with people suffering from cabin fever. They’re not even social distancing when they have to wait for a green light at intersections. Except for some people wearing masks the shoppers at grocery stores are shopping as usual. I think the return to normalcy will happen quicker than most think.

          1. It’ll vary by location.
            I live north of Jax, and people around here never really freaked out about it.
            Lots of people out and about every day, nobody paranoid if someone stands closer than 6 feet away.
            But I’ve heard from friends in other places that folks are a bit tighter wound around them.

            1. “North of Jax”. Fernandina Beach?

              CB

              1. Umm… maybe

                1. You in the area?

                  1. Yessir. Fernandina Beach. I was a casual Facebook poster, as well as the NextDoor community. My experience was the opposite. Every time I posted anything about limited openings of the beaches or whatever, you would have thought I was the anti-Christ, wanting to kill old people and children and mothers and small animals. I finally just deactivated my FB account what with this, followed by the upcoming election cycle, I decided I didn’t want anybody throwing a “Red Flag” on me and having the police show up in the middle of the night, for my protection. Meet ya’ at The Turtle when this is over. I’ll buy you a beer.

                    CB

                    1. Word.
                      Hope the turtle makes it, they haven’t been open at all from what I’ve seen.
                      Been going around town quite a bit doing doordash, and everyone’s been chill.
                      But I’ve definitely seen some heat on other people’s facebooks.
                      Guess that’s the nature of the beast

          2. Boy, I hope you are right, Fats. I want this to be over.

        2. Third, do not underestimate the flexibility and creativity and resilience of the American people. What we have here in this country is magical. We can do almost anything if we put our minds and efforts behind it.

          I have an enduring and unending faith in my fellow Americans.

          I wholeheartedly agree with this sentiment.

    2. Some local restaurant owners said they were retiring at the start of this saying it wouldn’t be worth the effort to re open. Now those were older owners so teh Young ones may still open unless they had to go through all their assets waiting for this to end. Restarting a restaurant takes a lot of capitol that others business don’t need

      1. Restaurants are often cited as the worst business to start because it’s next to impossible to make money, so it makes sense that a lot of them have already begun to fold.

        1. Yes. Most restaurants make all of their profit on Friday and Saturday night. Their margins are super thin, so usually they are paying the bills the rest of the week and then with a bunch of turnover, they make their profit during those heavy days.

          Many restaurants have lost (5 weekends/52) 10% of their profit days while ALSO not making enough money to cover expenses. It is a dreadful time to be in food services.

          1. It been a long time since I worked in a restaurant (college job) but Friday and Saturdays were packed houses with people waiting. So now you can open but distancing practices will likely mean that you can only fill a third of the tables at one time. Is this any better than being closed?

    3. There’s barely a difference in growth rates (relative to epidemic onset) in states where the lockdowns were mandatory from those where it isn’t. Even without such experience people protect themselves once they are given (and believe) information that makes them think they need to.

  4. >>due to the novel coronavirus

    stop w/the novel it’s just a virus.

    1. Maybe they’re alluding to fiction?

      1. oh this nonsense has definitely been a work of fiction.

  5. “Hospitals and other treatment centers have had time and experience to prepare for crushes that have mostly failed to come to pass, in no small part due to lockdown orders.

    Jeez, Nick, you were doing so well…

    1. I dropped down to ask for a citation to support that same statement…

    2. Yeah, it seems far from clear that they did anything. We need a lot more data to make that determination.

      1. But why?
        The goal is to peddle propaganda, not to inform

        1. You think Reason is liberal propaganda?

  6. “ Even more daunting is the unsettled issue of legal liability. It’s unclear whether theaters (and other businesses) will be held responsible for illnesses claimed by either customers or employees.”

    Any lawsuits should be immediately thrown out. How could one possibly prove, even at the lower standard used in civil courts, that Person A became infected by the virus through some fault of the theater?

    1. Well, if and only if, they left home wrapped in plastic, went in a sanitized and sealed car directly to the theater, unwrapped themselves, saw the movie (where did the get the movie by the way?), re-wrapped themselves and returned directly home in the same sealed car that was re-sanitized while they were in the theater, would the not be a reasonable doubt as to where they go the virus.
      And, in addition, that was the only place they went for three weeks, and no one including delivery drivers came to their house.

    2. Any lawsuits should be immediately thrown out. How could one possibly prove, even at the lower standard used in civil courts, that Person A became infected by the virus through some fault of the theater?

      This is Reason, they’re driving at getting a law written. We need a section 230, which is the 1A of the internet, for theaters.

      It could be pretty simple to prove that the theater was operating in a manner that violated code and endangered people. That’s not to say that all the cases would have standing, but there’s lots of ground between ‘I caught COVID.’ and employees, all of them, returning to work without washing their hands. Moreover, some libertarians would likely prefer a more civil or victim-oriented/motivated, rather than statutory, approach to such ‘code violations’.

  7. Educated, informed Americans with good judgment will tend to refrain from attending theaters, visiting dine-in restaurants and barbers, and congregating at bowling alleys and concert venues until effective treatments or other scientifically sound conditions dispel the pandemic.

    Other people may — at least for some period of relaxed pandemic management tools in trailing jurisdictions — tend to vindicate Darwin and demonstrate the consequences of being dumber than a virus.

    1. Like I said upthread, progressives are devoutly totalitarian.

      1. How is people making their own risk assessments totalitarian?

        1. As you advocate for lockdowns. Holy shit you’re so self unaware.

          1. Can you show me a comment I made where I advocated for government enforcement of lockdowns? I almost never advocate for any kind of government action on here.

            1. You simply excuse it by arguing that everyone is staying indoors “voluntarily”.
              A point not without merit in a vacuum, but wholly inappropriate in the context you’ve used it – as rebuttal to people objecting to the lockdowns

    2. I, for one, would certainly risk exposure to the public to see the pedophiliac jar full of gall bladders of failed dictators that poses as Kirkland get smashed to goo by a monster truck.

    3. I suspect the Darwinian selection will take as many Dem voters as GOP. TV news in Philly showed persons of a certain race that reliably votes Democrat were flooding into Fairmount Park for picnics on a nice weekday.

    4. You don’t actually understand how natural selection works, do you? Hint: keeping your immune system pristine isn’t how a species adapts.

      1. If killing one person is the price of making ten thousand others immune, it’s not worth it. No immunity for anyone. Everybody should die, to make it fair, or not at all.

        The calculus in dealing with this virus has been decidedly sociopathic. In other words, socialist to the core.

    5. What is so hilarious is that, based on general demographics, the deaths in this country are almost certainly tilted towards Democrats, since they are the majority residents of New York and other hard hit cities.

      But yeah, keep talking about those hick republicans that are living in their suburban house, in a county with 5 covid cases.

  8. “ Majorities of Americans say they will not feel comfortable eating out, going to malls, museums, concerts, and even church services for at least three months.”

    24 hour a day Terror Campaigns on the part of the media and government capped with daily 5 o’clock propaganda updates by governors using shady stats everywhere for 2 straight months will do that.

    1. I live in Northern California, in a region as big as South Carolina but with a population smaller than Atlanta. There have been 7 deaths, and there are currently 8 cases of identified coronavirus still quarantined.
      Governor Newsom says that there is one unified state with one set of rules for relaxing the shutdown, so while Modoc, Trinity, and Lassen counties have never had even one case, all the small restaurants – about twenty – will go bankrupt, probably never to be replaced.
      Relaxing the rules will not make everything roar back, but a slow creep looks good to us right now.

      1. They should do like we did in Georgia. Every Chik-Fil-A in the state has has 3-4 teenagers working the drive through lane. They even count the change for the rednecks in their F-150’s.

      2. It is as if making the lockdown statewide was not such a good idea.

      3. At this point, those counties should tell Newsom to go fuck himself and dare him to send out the National Guard if they re-open.

        1. Yesterday Butte county said is was going to start opening unless Newsom already put his thumb down

    2. 24 hour a day Terror Campaigns on the part of the media and government capped with daily 5 o’clock propaganda updates by governors using shady stats everywhere for 2 straight months will do that.

      Maybe we should take a cue from the French Revolution and bring back the ‘Great Fear’ in 2020. Seeing any “public health experts” who were off by more than 1000% as to the danger of the virus get their heads sliced off might embolden the masses.

      That and seeing Kirkland get immolated by Truckzilla.

      1. I second the motion.

        Where do we buy the pikes?

        1. Instead, guys like me will get to continue shoving progress, science, reason, and sense down the throats of clingers like you for the remainder of your inconsequential, disaffected lives. Then, you will be replaced by younger, better Americans, and my preferences will continue to win the culture war.

          This is what makes America great.

          1. Father, everybody knows that it isn’t “progress” that you want to shove down our throats, you big gay bitch, you.

    3. The majority of those Americans will change their tune first happy hour they get invited to.

      1. I rarely go out but I may in support

  9. With the 4.2 million jobs lost this week the Trump Misery Index is now at 46.7%.

    (UE + deficit as a percentage of GDP)

    1. Bullshit. It’s 22.5%. The Misery Index is UE + Inflation.

      1. Bullshit. Are you stuck in the 70s? No one gives a fuck about inflation anymore. It doesn’t exist anymore unless the deficits/debt get monetized.

        1. Nobody pays attention to misery indexes either.

        2. So you arbitrarily redefined it to suit your needs. How…progressive.

        3. Why is it a deficit? Last I checked, the Deficit doesn’t cause anyone misery- except maybe libertarians who obsess over it while literally everyone else in the world cheers for their free icecream.

          Oh I get it. You cherry picked something that looks bad.

    2. Oh dear. The grammar schools are closed down and you are besides yourself. Your personal misery index must be near 100.

      1. LMAO

  10. As long as the government-induced mass hysteria keeps the grocery store shelves empty, people will continue to self-distance.

    Things will eventually return to normal.

    1. hopefully in time for a phish fall tour all my summer shows were bagged.

      1. So far, the Xponential Music Festival is still on for the end of July.

        1. Samantha Fish is yum. If you’ve never seen Marcus King, do. His set at the Clapton Guitar Festival this past summer may have permanently damaged the American Airlines Center. Amazing.

          1. Haven’t seen him yet. Have you see Christone “Kingfish” Ingram? He played there last year.

            1. nope. researching…

              1. And he’s just a kid!

        1. was expecting something else lol. gracias.

          1. I’ve been rediscovering Ween recently 🙂

            1. bananas & blow.

              1. I cannot reveal the words of the golden eel.

  11. The Dotard is now the biggest welfare president of all time.

    Trump’s record of $2.6 trillion in handouts for one year is by far the biggest welfare check in US history.

    1. Had to bail out the blue states.

      1. Why yes, of course.

        The $2.6 trillion handout McConnell, Mnuchin and the Con Man came up with is Democrats fault.

        I tend to forget that.

        1. No, you purposefully ignore the vote totals and the house.

          1. Oh, this is a GOP disaster and handout no doubt.

            The fact that Democrats are pussies and a terrible opposition party is moot.

            Our system ALWAYS functions better with a GOP House and Democratic President. That is the only gridlock that works.

  12. What movies to show in the theaters? I don’t care about new ones, there are dozens of older movies that I would happily pay full price to see on the big screen. Jurassic Park, Independence Day, Star Trek IV or VI, M*A*S*H, Tomorrow Never Dies, Duck Soup, and more.

    1. Star Trek II is amazing on big format. I saw it once at the Egyptian in Los Angeles, and it cannot be beat.

      A couple of the spaghetti westerns are amazing in wide format as well.

    2. “Duck Soup” now thats just ducky but like the Marx brothers

  13. We’ll see in a few weeks the results of reopening now.

  14. “The kill switch to the economy was easy to find. The “on” button may be impossible to locate.”

    Jesus, Nick. You’re a libertarian (?). There is no “on” button. The button is always on until the State kills it.

    1. ^The correct answer.^

    2. Finding the “on” button for a while will be like a teenage boy fumbling around looking for his girlfriend’s on button; it’s going to be a while before the economy is singing ‘hallalujah’.

    3. He’s saying the government can’t turn the economy back on. I think he agrees with your sentiment.

      1. This is a libertarian comment section. We libertarians aren’t allowed to agree with each other unless we are agreeing that a third party is even more wrong.

  15. I live in GA and listened to both the initial press conference and several follow ups.

    It’s not like he’s saying “Ollie Ollie In Come Free”. There are a lot of restrictions and most businesses won’t reopen – https://thedispatch.com/p/some-georgia-businesses-can-reopen

    But it does give them a chance to come in and do some logistical work so they can reopen. And as Nick pointed out, no one is forcing anyone to open. But at least they are given a choice.

    It’s obviously been widely politicized, but someone has to go first. Turning the switch back on will be a slow process. At least this is a reasonable start.

  16. Majorities of Americans say they will not feel comfortable eating out, going to malls, museums, concerts, and even church services for at least three months. Those attitudes are likely to change dramatically if and when deaths abate or surge, or when a vaccine is announced. But in the near term, they suggest that even when a state or city lifts its bans, the economy may well stay dormant for a long time to come. Although the public-health dimension of the coronavirus pandemic has dominated the discussion so far, as time goes on, what analysts at The Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity call “the severe human cost of a prolonged economic shutdown” will come to occupy more and more of our attention.

    It is almost as if the lockdown was not the best of ideas.

    1. “It is almost as if the lockdown was not the best of ideas.”

      You think, with the death toll rising as rapidly as it was (and still is), most people would have continued to feel comfortable “eating out, going to malls, museums, concerts, and even church services?” People don’t think about risk all that rationally. Do you think that, if the death toll from driving all of a sudden started rising exponentially, people wouldn’t cut back on their non-essential driving?

  17. Cuomo: “This is a marathon and not a sprint.”

    This history-ignorant asshole obviously doesn’t know that Pheidippides, the guy that ran from Marathon to Athens, dropped dead from the effort. That kinda ruins the metaphor.

    1. “Rejoice, we conquer!”

    2. The rest (or prior part) of the story:
      He ran about 240 km (150 mi) in two days, and then ran back. He then ran the 40 km (25 mi) to the battlefield near Marathon and back to Athens to announce the Greek victory over Persia in the Battle of Marathon (490 BC) with the word νικῶμεν (nikomen “We win!”), as stated by Lucian chairete, nikomen (“hail, we are the winners”) and then collapsed and died.

    3. He wanted to say it’s a long march, but doesn’t want to tip his hand

      1. Laughing that hard definitely produces more respiratory particulate than is safe for my small office.

        Best comment of the day!

        1. heh, thanks!

  18. … crushes that have mostly failed to come to pass, in no small part due to lockdown orders.
    The is no scientific evidence to support this statement. Why do you hate science?

  19. only about “37 percent of U.S. jobs can plausibly be performed at home”

    And what percent of those are “essential”?

    1. All that money spent on office buildings was wasted.

      1. If all of that money had been invested in licensing and monitoring and inspection schemes in the first place all of this hassle with people choosing where they do business and who they do business with could’ve been nipped in the bud before it got out of hand.

        Just think, with all the corporate centers closed down, all that land can be returned to nature, just the way Ron Bailey wants it.

      2. I think there’s going to be a ton of state’s who become hip to that harsh reality. You can do a zoom conference call and enter a software suite from anywhere with broadband. Who the fuck needs the traditional office.

        1. WeWork gets a scapegoat to blame for their shitty business model and management!

    2. Whatever percent are diversity& inclusion specialists for the government

    3. And based on social media all those jobs are filled by either total pussies, busybodies or commies. And in some cases all three. Although you do get the occasional sales guy who understands what’s happening.

  20. Great. Some Georgia businesses can open.
    Where the gonna get the stuff to stay open?
    Seems to me there is a requirement to have a supply chain in there somewhere.
    What happens when the Georgia gym run out of the soap they get from New York?

  21. On the upside lizzy Warren’s brother died from covid. Hopefully he passed it on to lizzy

    1. He was 86 years old apparently

      1. Did you see the pictures of him? Covid Schmovid. Like it or not, old people eventually die.

    2. Only 1/1064 of it.

    3. Be kind. A good man has died. He served our country.

      His sister….I don’t like her politics. It is irrelevant.

  22. “Majorities of Americans say they will not feel comfortable eating out, going to malls, museums, concerts, and even church services for at least three months.”

    Government failed at the start, by not getting information out soon and seriously enough for individuals to protect themselves, and is failing now, by falsely signalling an all clear.

    Americans, at least most, were ahead of the government(s) in the “shutdown” and are beyond it in perseverance.

    1. The rona’s gonna get ya, hihn

      1. He’s been incredibly quiet lately. Must be going through an extended depressive phase after that manic episode at the end of March.

  23. Georgia’s citizens should be happy they have a sensible governor, instead of that fat bitch who constantly whines and complains to anyone still listening.

    1. Brian Kemp is a fucking stupid redneck like your typical Republican. But he still might be better than the fat bitch. Maybe.

      1. You don’t live in Georgia, asswipe Dave Weigel. You still live at the same address: 1435 Euclid Street Apartment 2 in Northwest Washington D.C.

      2. I bet history is going to be far more kind to him than say Andrew Cuomo.

  24. It’s true, even if the entire country re-opened today, we wouldn’t get fully back to where we were before, and we may not for quite a while.

    Why? Because the average moron out there seriously believes that this bullshit really is like the Black Plague and that they’re at serious risk of dying from it, because the lowlife scummy vermin in the government/media complex wanted them to believe that bullshit.

    1. It’s a rare event, but I agree with you completely here.

      1. Second.

  25. Well this just leads credence that the mandatory lockdowns were totally unnecessary. Also I so fucking sick of the goddamn chicken and egg argument the doomers are putting forth like sycophantic lemmings that this just proves businesses aren’t missing out on sales because noone would be shopping there anyway. Fuck off and burn in hell you godless commie pussies.

    1. this just proves businesses aren’t missing out on sales because noone would be shopping there anyway

      Which also supports the notion that the lockdowns were unnecessary and pointless. Seems like a lot of people actually prefer the more coercive option, even when the entirely voluntary option works just as well.

      1. We must do something zeb. Can’t have people believing the gov. is completely unnecessary or worse in the way.

    2. “Also I so fucking sick of the goddamn chicken and egg argument the doomers are putting forth like sycophantic lemmings that this just proves businesses aren’t missing out on sales because noone would be shopping there anyway. Fuck off and burn in hell you godless commie pussies.”

      You see, eunuch?

  26. I think they should still give more time
    https://hit64.com/

  27. The “ON” switch is harder to find because there are multiple ON switches in multiple locations. And if they aren’t moved to the ON position in the correct sequence the system will take a lot longer to restart.

  28. Implicit in this post is the notion that, had the various mandated shut-downs not happened, we would not now be in the position of having to locate on ON switch. That is likely not the case. With the news about COVID-19 dominating the headlines in mid-March, it was inevitable that lots of people would stop doing stuff like getting haircuts, going to restaurants and movie theaters, and traveling. And, unless mandated social distancing and stay-at-home orders had literally no effect on the rate of infection, the news after mid-March would have been far worse.

    The whole point of mandated shut-downs was to use the time it took to lower the rate of infection to put into effect measures that would allow us to control the virus’ spread. Of course we’ve failed to do that, so it’s likely that we’ll be in no better shape after we re-open than we were before.

    South Korea, which I believe had its first COVID-19 death on the same day that the US did, and which has 1/6 of the population of the US, had 12 new infections on Wednesday. I think we had a few more than that.

    1. I mean, the media could’ve not hyped a slightly severe cold bug…

      1. The current leading cause of death in the US is a “slightly severe cold bug”?

    2. Infections are not the end of the world. Keeping people uninfected is just postponing the inevitable. Let people get infected; most will have cold-like symptoms and move on. No, we had to go the stupid route and shut down everything. Brilliant.

  29. That means even if (movie) exhibitors are able to turn the lights back on in some venues, there’s not a lot of compelling product to offer. They would likely be forced to screen library titles and a few lower-budget indies.
    As I recall the Hollywood mega-products that were hitting the silver screen pre-covid, that may be a feature, not a bug.

    1. Ya, if they aren’t careful they will pack more people in that way

  30. If the requirements for social distancing are applied to restaurants, many of those will close permanently. Rush times like dinner would take in much less money because people won’t stand in line forever, especially if they are 6 feet away from each other.

    That said, get these businesses up and running and let the customers decide what works for them. Government, get out of the way!

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.