David McWilliams: Health crisis has now become a wealth crisis

Solving the economic crisis we find ourselves in due to Covid-19 is actually quite simple

An almost-deserted Grafton Street in Dublin on Wednesday.  Our reality is that the economy has been shut down not by debts, spending, a property bubble, too much lending or bad policy, but by a virus. Photograph: Aidan Crawley/EPA

An almost-deserted Grafton Street in Dublin on Wednesday. Our reality is that the economy has been shut down not by debts, spending, a property bubble, too much lending or bad policy, but by a virus. Photograph: Aidan Crawley/EPA

Economics is not a cult. It is not a set of definitive, unchanging rules. It is not a religion. There is no creed. There are no believers and there is no dogma. While there are clubs or factions, membership of those is optional. At its core, economics is the art of the possible. It is the study of a complex system that is never at rest, a dynamic and adaptive system of enormous energy and potential. It evolves rather than grows or contracts.

The economy is like an immune system, dealing with new dangers, learning on the job and constantly acclimatising. Despite what most economists say, there is no such thing as equilibrium. A moment’s thought would tell you that an economy in equilibrium is a ludicrous notion.

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