Bethany McLean’s Weekend Reading List: the Pandemic’s Long-Term Consequences

Corruption, lobbying, corporate malfeasance, and frauds: a weekly unconventional selection of must-read articles by investigative journalist Bethany McLean. 

 

Johns Hopkins’ COVID-19 map

 

Of course, this weekend’s list is mostly COVID-19 focused. It’s clear that this pandemic is going to define not just our now, but our future. This piece highlights the ways in which overall statistics can obscure the human reality and rapidly become meaningless. 

 

 

The tragedy in this piece has far less immediacyand some won’t find it tragic at all. But if the long term consequence of the pandemic is a society where human interaction dwindles, where a sign of privilege is increasing isolation and contact becomes something only service workers have to endure, I think that will be tragic indeed. 

 

 

Regardless of the path of the virus, it’s already clear that the economic consequences, both short term and long term, of containment efforts, are also going to be terribly difficult for many, many people.

 

But will COVID-19 be the spark that also ignites underlying problems in the market? If so, this piece from last summer may start to look eerily prescient: 

 

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