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covid19:why [2020/04/02 22:47]
rim [Australia-specific, but you can hopefully see how it applies to almost any Western government]
covid19:why [2020/04/02 22:52] (current)
rim
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 Speaking of China, where is probably the safest place (in terms of likelihood of catching covid-19) to walk down the street today? I would suggest Beijing, because there are very, very close to zero active cases on the streets -- they'​re getting close to 90% of cases having recovered, and the rest are under secure lockdown. Of course, a foreigner walking down a Beijing street today would probably be immediately locked up, but they wouldn'​t catch covid-19. There is close to zero chance of China allowing a covid-19 case on a plane. Yet Australia continues to ban travellers from China, at enormous cost to our economy. This is going to cost us even more. China must be pretty damn annoyed with us by now. Their economy is going to recover soon, it's going to be the only large economy in the world that is likely to avoid collapse, and they will have plenty of countries desperate to export raw materials to them -- including us. Plus [[https://​www.wired.com/​story/​jack-ma-supply-us-covid-19-tests-masks/​|they can supply]] the test kits, protective clothing, ventilators etc. that we urgently need (they ramped up production unbelievably fast, they don't need that production capacity now because they know who has coronavirus,​ and they know they'​re not on the streets). We probably need to bypass much of our medical device certification (which may require urgent legislation),​ but at this critical juncture, taking the word of the Chinese that a test kit or a ventilator works is better than not having one. Right now, we need to remember that **the perfect is the enemy of the good**. Speaking of China, where is probably the safest place (in terms of likelihood of catching covid-19) to walk down the street today? I would suggest Beijing, because there are very, very close to zero active cases on the streets -- they'​re getting close to 90% of cases having recovered, and the rest are under secure lockdown. Of course, a foreigner walking down a Beijing street today would probably be immediately locked up, but they wouldn'​t catch covid-19. There is close to zero chance of China allowing a covid-19 case on a plane. Yet Australia continues to ban travellers from China, at enormous cost to our economy. This is going to cost us even more. China must be pretty damn annoyed with us by now. Their economy is going to recover soon, it's going to be the only large economy in the world that is likely to avoid collapse, and they will have plenty of countries desperate to export raw materials to them -- including us. Plus [[https://​www.wired.com/​story/​jack-ma-supply-us-covid-19-tests-masks/​|they can supply]] the test kits, protective clothing, ventilators etc. that we urgently need (they ramped up production unbelievably fast, they don't need that production capacity now because they know who has coronavirus,​ and they know they'​re not on the streets). We probably need to bypass much of our medical device certification (which may require urgent legislation),​ but at this critical juncture, taking the word of the Chinese that a test kit or a ventilator works is better than not having one. Right now, we need to remember that **the perfect is the enemy of the good**.
  
-Update 3rd April: Unbelievably,​ the Australian Border Force has confiscated a shipment of hundreds of thousands of facemasks because "they don't meet Australian Standards"​. In a world where other governments are encouraging people to make their own from old t-shirts, because anything is better than nothing. If I were cynical, I'd think that they were actually confiscating them to supply to poorly supported health workers ​-- which might actually make sense, but come on, let's have some honesty about it if that's the game.+Update 3rd April: Unbelievably,​ the Australian Border Force has confiscated a shipment of hundreds of thousands of facemasks because "they don't meet Australian Standards"​. In a world where other, wiser governments are encouraging people to make their own from old t-shirts, because anything is better than nothing. If I were cynical, I'd think that they were actually confiscating them to supply to our poorly supported health workers.