YES! A REALLY BIG YES!
We Can Certainly Save World from Great Covid-19 Economic Depression by Printing More Money and other Effective Measures.
Lockdowns thrust upon world economies by the fight against Corona-19 virus has caused severe economic dislocation everywhere. This has raised spectre of severe Economic Depression that could surpass the severities of the Great Depression of 1929 and the 2008-2009.
The multimillion dollar question that we must answer is: how to overcome the destabilizing and debilitating effects of Social-Economic Lockdowns with nearly all industries closed except those exempted for catering to essential products/services and workers forced to sit idle at home?
I had suggested a few weeks ago on my Twitter handle a very simple solution to this vexing problem. The solution suggested by me envisages printing more money/bills/currency. This solution has now been followed by several governments and economies world over. For example, the USA, the European Central Bank, Japan, Italy, Turkey, Indonesia and others are printing more paper-money to stem the tide of economic onslaught brought by Covid-19.
I hope each Economy/government including Indian/Bhaarteey economy/government follows this above mentioned uncommonly common-sense prudent advice.
Look - primary, secondary and tertiary sectors compromising of Agriculture, Industries and Services have already created vast reservoirs/stocks such as grains, and other products everywhere in world. These stocks can last enough and take care of food and other basic needs of citizens/residents for next 6-7 months of Lockdowns. By that time, scientific parameters can/shall have certainly been worked out to reopen Economies step by step.
If you give a stimulus package in terms of pumping more money into bank account of every citizen/person who is sitting idle at home due to Lockdown, these citizens/persons shall be able to buy essential products with this non-wage/work salary/cash pumped into their bank accounts by their respective governments. This shall also help motivate ordinary people not to venture out of safe environs of their homes unnecessarily or protest against Lockdowns. Psychological benefit of enormous peace such a step shall induce in minds of people can't be underestimated.
The government servants aren't worried since they automatically get/shall get their salaries put into their bank/other accounts by their governments/employers.
It's the private sector employees - both in the organised and unorganised sectors that need worry and indeed are worrying. With no production, don't expect their employers to give them money to survive Lockdowns.
Then, who is to care for private sector employees? Obviously, it's their governments who should/must look after them.
The central/federal governments can/must print more paper money. Then, they should/must deposit money each week/month into account of each private sector worker, equivalent to wages/salaries drawn last by such a worker. This should/must continue until opening of Lockdowns.
Why should/must a central government bear reponsibilty for each private sector worker/non-worker? Well, it's governments which have imposed Lockdowns in larger Social Interests and as such should/must bear responsibility of taking care of these private sector residents residing in their respective territories.
The governments must bear expenses involved in testing of each Covid-19 resident/patient and their subsequent hospitalisation/treatment since the fight against Covid-19 is a collective social group fight and it represents/leads this fight. Don't expect private sector insurance companies/individuals to bear this expense.
In fact, it shall be much better if governments deposit certain minimum amount of money for bare survival every week/ month in accounts of even those residents who aren't registered with it. In other words, they must pump certain sum of money into accounts of each resident in their respective territories.
The governments at all levels - federal/central, regional/state, district/county, and local/village levels must all coordinate their activities to ensure each resident receives such a financial stimulus provided by federal/central governments.
The unexpected Covid-19 has created mammoth problems of how to deal with production and services such as agricultural crops due for harvesting; and other perishable/non-perishable products already lying in warehouses/factories?
Well, the governments can/must utilize services of their well-trained military/paramilitary/defense personnel to personally deliver essentials to their residents/warehouses.
The residents who produce/supply essential services be first tested for Corona-19 virus and then be equipped with PPE or Personal Protective Equipment to ensure they don't get infected while carrying out essential products/services activities. Of course, they must follow simple and very basic preventive measures/guidelines issued by the World Health Organisation such as maintaining Strict Social Distancing, Washing hands regularly with soap for 20 seconds and so on.
Opening of Lockdowns without adopting a perfect scientific strategy can lead to not only severe costs but human costs too in terms of the danger of Corona-19 virus killing still a more larger number of people by staging a more virulent comeback with people moving around with a complacent overconfidence and false sense of security thinking that the danger of Covid-19 has disappeared...!
- Dr Swaamee Aprtemaanandaa Jee
(The writer is an India-based Scientific Healer, Researcher, citizen-Economist who is well known on Cyberspace/Internet for informative analytical pieces on Healing, Spirituality, Yoga, Fitness, Health, Medicine, Ayurveda, Science, Economics, and Politics)