E The Thing In The Sky - A Coronavirus Story

Video Length 00:06:20

A Coronavirus Story

Using data to predict the future is a modern obsession. If we just build big enough models we can make it all fit, and we can understand everything that's going to happen. Those models enable high degrees of leverage (because you can predict risk). They enable centrally planned health systems to squeeze every drop out of their dollars. They enable incredibly confidence.

But the world isn't actually a model. One weird mutation in one virus in a market in Wuhan - an event too small for the human eye to see - is reinventing our world.

Now, of course, the model makers are out in force. But they can't predict human innovation. All they see, like the great Malthus, is this curve and that curve - not our ability to fundamentally redefine the curves.

So today, instead of a model, I've decided to take another approach to corona. I've realized there is probably as much truth and strength in a story. Not just any story, but a children's story - The Thing from the Sky.

In case it isn't clear, I am calling for a shutdown of a pre-determined and limited duration (a few weeks) during which capacity should be ramped up as aggressively as possible. After that, I am calling for additional measures (protection of the old, additional beds, moderate social distancing etc...) but not lockdowns. We need resources to deal with this - and everything else that is still ongoing.

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Mary Connors 3 months ago Member's comment

Cute.

Beating Buffett 3 months ago Member's comment

The video isn't working.

Boaz Berkowitz 3 months ago Contributor's comment

Thanks for the heads up. Please try again, it should be working now.

Beating Buffett 3 months ago Member's comment

Yes, all fixed. Thank you for the speedy attention to this!