Bill Gates has been warning about the risk of a global pandemic for years. And since the novel coronavirus slammed the US, he’s been advocating a “super painful” 10-week national shutdown that has earned him plenty of criticism for being an out-of-touch billionaire (just like when he suggested that the biggest contributor to poverty in Africa was too many poor Africans being born)
And yesterday, Gates opened himself to critics once again by publishing an op-ed in the Washington Post where he obliquely criticized the Trump Administration’s approach to combating the virus, and suggested an alternative that sounded like something that might be possible in the world from The Jetsons.
Yeah, humanity (and the US in particular) has made some pretty big strides in the worlds of big data and AI in recent years, but we suspect that American government’s capabilities aren’t quite advanced enough to permit for the seamless and flawless allocations of vital medical resources and semi-automated contact tracing.
Of course, Gates’ guide to how the US can “catch up” in its battle against the coronavirus includes some more practical tips, too, like recommending a mandatory national shutdown that the Trump Administration has specifically said it is opposed to doing (Florida only finally closed the last of the state’s beaches when Gov. DeSantis caved to critics and issued a sweeping lockdown order yesterday). Still, several states have only “recommended” that people WFH and avoid public places…if and when possible.
He brings up other valid points too, echoing Andrew Cuomo’s criticism of the federal government essentially forcing states to bid for vital resources. And finally: Running more rapid trials to find effective treatments while drug companies race to find a vaccine (kind of like what was done here?)
The full op-ed is below. We’ll let readers be the …
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