Thursday, October 7, 2021

Assessing Lockdowns as Public Policy

As we step back to assess the effectiveness of the lockdown policy, we find this study, appearing in a peer reviewed journal, demonstrating that the policy was seriously flawed.

I offer the synopsis, from the International Journal of the Economics of Business:

An examination of over 100 Covid-19 studies reveals that many relied on false assumptions that over-estimated the benefits and under-estimated the costs of lockdown. The most recent research has shown that lockdowns have had, at best, a marginal effect on the number of Covid-19 deaths. Generally speaking, the ineffectiveness stemmed from individual changes in behavior: either non-compliance or behavior that mimicked lockdowns. The limited effectiveness of lockdowns explains why, after more than one year, the unconditional cumulative Covid-19 deaths per million is not negatively correlated with the stringency of lockdown across countries. Using a method proposed by Professor Bryan Caplan along with estimates of lockdown benefits based on the econometric evidence, I calculate a number of cost/benefit ratios of lockdowns in terms of life-years saved. Using a mid-point estimate for costs and benefits, the reasonable estimate for Canada is a cost/benefit ratio of 141. It is possible that lockdown will go down as one of the greatest peacetime policy failures in modern history.

Q. E. D.

1 comment:

Sam L. said...

Yeah, that's gonna work a TREAT. Sho nuff! (Insert "disbelief" here.)