When we are making a plan, what is a milestone?
Definition of milestone
1: a stone serving as a milepost (see MILEPOST sense 1)
2: a significant point in development
//Graduating from college was an important milestone in her life.
Here we will use the term “milestone” in the second sense. What is the context? How do we get our economy back up and running after shutting it down for a month and a half?
First we had 15 day shutdown, and now we have another 30 day shutdown. That was announced at a briefing (See the video below.).
We cannot keep the American economy shut down indefinitely, and the longer the economy is shut down the more damage WE will sustain. WE must work to provide ourselves all kinds of things, including food, clothing and shelter. If WE don’t work? Eventually WE don’t have the things WE need to survive.
Right now only those people those in authority have deemed essential are still working. However, everyone who works does work deemed essential by someone. If nothing else, that person depends upon their own income to provide for their own needs.
Does spendthrift Federal spending like that 2.2 trillion dollar Cares Act solve the problem of shutting down the economy? Not really. When Congress just prints money and spends it, the money supply increases. If the supply of goods and services is going down, then we just have more money chasing fewer goods and services. That means prices will quickly go up, which means our money will quickly become worth less. Do that too many times and no one will want our money. Even those people whose work is supposedly essential have little interest in giving away the fruits of their labors for worthless money. Everyone depends upon their income to provide for their own needs and the needs of their families.
So what can we do to get out of this mess? Instead of being afraid of COVID-19, we need to start thinking about what we can do to get back to work without getting sick from the virus. We need to start planning NOW, and we need to set some concrete milestones.
The Federal Government is in charge of overall planning. That includes developing the transition milestones for each phase of our response to the threat posed by COVID-19.
- We are still stuck in phase 1. To increase social distancing, we have shut down much of our economy. To implement the shutdown and radical social distancing, the Federal Government has developed a bunch of guidelines for different organizations and individuals in different situations and for different tasks. (see Coronavirus (COVID-19)). That includes providing state governments social distancing guidelines. In addition, this guidance supports both developing and distributing the resources we need to fight the virus.
- The Federal Government needs to define clear criteria for exiting phase 1 and to develop a strategy for phase 2. In phase 2 we need to lift the quarantine on everyone and just quarantine the people who have the virus. We need to let most people go back to work. To do that we need three pieces of information. That includes guidelines for phase 2 social distancing (including the use of personal protective equipment like face masks), the point at which (definitional criteria) we will have both the equipment and personnel in place to reliably test and identify those people who are carrying the virus, and the point at which we will have both the equipment and personnel in place to reliably test and identify those people who have had the virus and now have immunity. Then we can ascertain (model) how much social distancing is required in phase 2. Then we can determine what businesses should be allowed to reopen and what regulations those businesses have to follow to keep the virus from spreading.
- The Federal Government also needs to define exit criteria for phase 2. Current guidance prohibits large gatherings, making it impossible for people to attend live entertainment, churches, restaurants, and so forth. Some states have even prohibited in person voting, use of public playgrounds, shut down schools, and so forth. In phase 3, we need to have achieved enough confidence that we have identified the carriers of the virus and quarantined them. At the same time, we want to maintain sufficient social distancing that someone won’t accidentally take the virus into an elder care facility or a public gathering and kill a bunch of people. We need to get back to the point we are not worried about children spreading a deadly disease.
Since we are federation, state and local governments must take the lead in implementing the guidance provided by the Federal Government at each milestone. Because the United States has over 80,000 local governments, state governments can allow localities to efficiently deal with their own unique problems in the own way. That is, state and local governments need to take the lead in modifying business regulations as they see fit so that they can prepare for phase 2 and phase 3 as soon as possible. Therefore, the Trump administration needs to stop focusing on the shutting down the economy and to start figuring what is needed to restart it NOW!
- The Uncertainty Virus (freedomthroughempowerment.wordpress.com)
- Economies are People! (insanitybytes2.wordpress.com)
- COVID-19 is the most predictable calamity in modern history. (curmudgeon550.blog)
- Working from home and Working from home, part two (bluebirdofbitterness.com)