How South Korea’s Response to a Surge Demonstrates American Acquiescence

I realize I’ve been very critical of D.C.’s COVID-19 response recently. But what’s worse is that, compared to most states, it has been a fairly good response. In case you’re wondering, that is damning with faint praise. The southern states in which COVID-19 surging don’t really seem to have a plan, other than suggestions, to actually do something. So I’m glad I’m not living in one of them right now.

That said, having moved on to phase 2 in D.C., even with some statistical chicanery, D.C. appears to be fine with the new status quo of 30-50 new infections per day, and one to four deaths per day (hopefully, the latter will tail off and is a lagging indicator). Meanwhile, in South Korea, they’re going all out after a spike to…46 new cases in a day (and the data suggest most of those are from overseas visitors, not spread within South Korea).

That’s right. A country which is 71 times as large as D.C. is not celebrating 46 new cases per day (the D.C. average number of new cases over the last five days is 38). Yes, D.C.’s response has been better than many states, but the U.S. as a whole seems to be settling on a kinder, gentler version of the Trump plan.

This is not a success, but acquiescence. And, as South Korea shows, it didn’t need to be like this. Anger is the appropriate emotion.

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1 Response to How South Korea’s Response to a Surge Demonstrates American Acquiescence

  1. Edin Villalobos says:

    In my country we have been lucky that our public health system and governement had been really excellent managing the pandemic.

    We have the lowest crude mortality rate on the Americas: only 12 deaths in a population of 5 million.

    The big problem is the economic impact of the partial lockdown and there are a lot of people that argues: “only 12 deaths? Last year there were 88 deaths by influenza and we didn’t made a lockdown! We need to reopen the economy!” And in that group there are conspiracy theorists, libertarians and CEO of companies. They were REALLY angry when the government suspended the reopening of last weekend because a spike on cases.

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