There was a famous statement made by former Major of Chicago and former Chief of Staff to President Barak Obama, Rahm Emanuel. He said “never let a serious crisis go to waste.” Though Rahm Emanual was talking about finance and politics, we now find ourselves in a pandemic crisis, and Americans squandered precious time to prepare for the incoming crisis caused by the Coronavirus.
Lock-downs on a biblical scale began taking hold of China back in January, just before Lunar New Year. At that time, many people outside of Asia did not know what was happening. In fact, even in Asia people were struggling with the reality, out of the blue sixty million people were suddenly locked into their homes over fears of catching a virus. As January came to an end, the lock-downs and quarantines spread throughout China. People in Shanghai, Beijing, Shenzhen, and many more cities were told to stay home. Factories in most places were shut down, and schools were cancelled until further notice.
As the situation in China unfolded I was in Taiwan, but began frequently communicating with friends and family back in the United States. I continuously explained that the situation in China was very serious and people should prepare. Upon returning to the U.S. I found that most people had no idea what happening in China, and had no sense of urgency to prepare for international spread.
After several weeks the crisis in China began showing up on other countries shores, such as Taiwan, South Korea, Italy, and parts of South East Asia. At this point the world should have realized that we were in a global crisis. That was the time to seriously begin preparations, but most people let this global crisis go to waste. Instead of using other countries data and actions as an imputus to prepare, Americans simply ingnored this situation as “the flu”. Since the international crisis was wasted, Americans are now dealing with a very local one.
As of this writing, coronavirus was confirmed to have killed 9 people in in less than 5 days in America. The virus appears to continue spreading across the U.S. unencumbered as people ignore the signs of crisis. The brightest minds on multiplicative events have been warning people for weeks with little progress. Now it appears people in parts of the U.S. are beginning to panic as the virus shows up in their localities. In order to ensure this crisis does not cripple our country, Americans must take swift action to prepare to isolate for a couple weeks. At a minimum people should avoid large public gatherings. Do not spend a lot of time around a lot of people, wash your hands, and have supplies to remain in place for a bit.
So far Americans let an international crisis go to waste, let us see if we will do the same domestically.