BrianBM

The Swedish failure

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There's been a lot of prattle here from admirers of the Swedish government's minimalist take on the Covid-19 virus.  Here's the bottom line, from official figures noted in the Times today.

 

" That might not sound especially horrendous compared with the more than 129,000 Americans who have died. But Sweden is a country of only 10 million people. Per million people, Sweden has suffered 40 percent more deaths than the United States, 12 times more than Norway, seven times more than Finland and six times more than Denmark."  I'll be back with a further cut and paste, but one other note: the adjacent countries, listed in the preceding sentence, are banning Swedes from entry. All of them shut down vigorously, all are now in better economic shape.

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LONDON — Ever since the coronavirus emerged in Europe, Sweden has captured international attention by conducting an unorthodox, open-air experiment. It has allowed the world to examine what happens in a pandemic when a government allows life to carry on largely unhindered.

This is what has happened: Not only have[ link deleted] than in neighboring countries that imposed lockdowns, but Sweden’s economy has fared little better.

“They literally gained nothing,” said Jacob F. Kirkegaard, a senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington. “It’s a self-inflicted wound, and they have no economic gains.”

The results of Sweden’s experience are relevant well beyond Scandinavian shores. In the United States, where the virus is spreading with increasing speed, many states have — [ link deleted]— avoided lockdowns or lifted them prematurely on the assumption that this would foster economic revival, allowing people to return to workplaces, shops and restaurants.

 

In Britain, Prime Minister Boris Johnson —[link deleted]with Covid-19 —and restaurants last weekend in a bid to [preserve the economy.]

Implicit in these approaches is the assumption that governments must balance saving lives against the imperative to spare jobs, with the extra health risks of rolling back social distancing potentially justified by a resulting boost to prosperity. But Sweden’s grim result — more death, and nearly equal economic damage — suggests that the supposed choice between lives and paychecks is a false one: A failure to impose social distancing can cost lives and jobs at the same time.

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1 min ago, Gotcow? said:

OK, what's your take and how does it matter to US?

The virus doesn't care about the economy, or about re-election campaigns. It matters to us because the President's drive to re-open NOW, NOW, NOW, his insistence that it's fading away, is utterly wrongheaded.

 

Back with more.

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"Sweden put stock in the sensibility of its people as it largely avoided imposing government prohibitions. The government allowed restaurants, gyms, shops, playgrounds and most schools to remain open. By contrast, Denmark and Norway opted for strict quarantines, banning large groups and locking down shops and restaurants. More than three months later, the coronavirus is blamed for 5,420 deaths in Sweden, according to the World Health Organization. That might not sound especially horrendous compared with the more than 129,000 Americans who have died. But Sweden is a country of only 10 million people. Per million people, Sweden has suffered 40 percent more deaths than the United States, 12 times more than Norway, seven times more than Finland and six times more than Denmark."

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The elevated death toll resulting from Sweden’s approach has been clear for many weeks. What is only now emerging is how Sweden, despite letting its economy run unimpeded, has still suffered business-destroying, prosperity-diminishing damage, and at nearly the same magnitude of its neighbors.

Sweden’s [the Central Bank] expects its economy to contract by 4.5 percent this year, a revision from a previously expected gain of 1.3 percent. The unemployment rate jumped to 9 percent in May from 7.1 percent in March. “The overall damage to the economy means the recovery will be protracted, with unemployment remaining elevated,” Oxford Economics concluded in a recent research note.

This is more or less how damage caused by the pandemic has played out in Denmark, where the central bank expects that the economy will shrink 4.1 percent this year, and where joblessness has edged up to 5.6 percent in May from 4.1 percent in March.

In short, Sweden suffered a vastly higher death rate while failing to collect on the expected economic gains.

The coronavirus does not stop at national borders. Despite the government’s decision to allow the domestic economy to roll on, Swedish businesses are stuck with the same conditions that produced recession everywhere else. And Swedish people responded to the fear of the virus by limiting their shopping — not enough to prevent elevated deaths, but enough to produce a decline in business activity.

Here is one takeaway with potentially universal import: It is simplistic to portray government actions such as quarantines as the cause of economic damage. The real culprit is the virus itself. From Asia to Europe to the Americas, the risks of the pandemic have disrupted businesses while prompting people to avoid shopping malls and restaurants, regardless of official policy.

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Just now, BrianBM said:

The virus doesn't care about the economy, or about re-election campaigns. It matters to us because the President's drive to re-open NOW, NOW, NOW, his insistence that it's fading away, is utterly wrongheaded.

 

Back with more.

This virus is going to have it's run whether we are locked down or not.

 

We can't just shutdown and keep handing out trillions that we don't have.

 

Protect the at risk.

The rest of us work with masks and social distancing ad keep the economy alive.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

The good news is that we withdrew from the WHO. That'll teach them for not dragging the President out of his bed to warn him with the same warnings he ignored from the NSC! And the NIH! Foreigners rebuked, YAAAAY! MAGA!  Americans dead for lack of a firm official policy from the White House, but so what? Maybe they wouldn't have worn masks anyway!

 

Sure.

Edited by BrianBM

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I did the math the other day. Had we done the same, we'd have 40K or so more dead. A drop in the bucket. 

As far as their economy suffering, show me. 

The only economic peril they have faced that  am aware of is the losses from neighboring states that shut down effecting them. 

Is there more you can show me? 

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Oy vey! Just go to the cdc and print the numbers. 

 

OMG!!!! SWEDEN HAD A SLIGHTLY HIGHER DEATH RATE THAN US!!!! THE SKY IS FALLING!!!!!

 

Belarus did even less than Sweden and they have lower death count than both US and Sweden. 

 

Annnnnnnnddddddd...... Sweden hates old white people just like Nipples Cuomo. They're doing what they can to make room for new vibrant replacement people. Even that didn't work very well because old white people like to go outside for fresh, clean air and exercise. 

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Posted (edited) · Report post

To put above rant in perspective, in the graph below dated 1st July 2020, Sweden ranks 5th on the scale of deaths per million from the WuFlu, the US 7th.

 

Belgium, UK, Spain and Italy all rank signficantly higher than Sweden in these numbers of deaths per million.

 

Sweden neither shut down, nor devastated and destroyed their economy for the forseeable future.

 

Doesn't really offer a compelling case for another complete shutdown if there is another wave, now does it.

 

coviddeaths.jpg.e66f8b78da49a5b308528c8f5a6e8007.jpg

 

Edited by zybathegeek

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Hey Brian, I'm looking for info on the Swedish stimulus package but can't find anything. 

Can you help a guy out with a link? 

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Just now, BrianBM said:

Americans dead for lack of a firm official policy from the White House, but so what? Maybe they wouldn't have worn masks anyway!

 

Sure.

As you have so clearly shown a firm official policy does not seem to have had much impact on deaths.

 

Don't forget the so called experts told us no masks before they told us yes masks.

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6 mins ago, BrianBM said:

The good news is that we withdrew from the WHO. That'll teach them for not dragging the President out of his bed to warn him with the same warnings he ignored from the NSC! And the NIH! Foreigners rebuked, YAAAAY! MAGA!  Americans dead for lack of a firm official policy from the White House, but so what? Maybe they wouldn't have worn masks anyway!

 

Sure.

Better to invest discretionary taxpayer funds in competent organizations, or are you a proponent of throwing good money after bad?

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