I have not dedicated a Monday post to COVID-19 since mid-May. As the U.S. average number of daily cases has again exceeded 100,000 cases per day, I feel the time has come to return to this practice.
The New York Times reports our daily average number of new cases is 110,360, more than double the number two weeks ago. I have called hospitalizations and deaths lagging indicators, but the lag is over and those numbers are up as well. More than 60,000 COVID-19 patients are hospitalized and the average daily death rate is once again above 500.
Why this Matters to Preppers
COVID-19 remains, has again become, an issue with which preppers should concern themselves. Not only are their increased chances that you or a loved one might get sick, but there are multiple repercussions in our society and our economy that might affect us. For example, we could see more companies close, job growth slow or reverse, travel restrictions, and supply chain disruptions. For example, China’s intense lockdowns could limit the number of container ships are loaded and allowed to depart their ports. This could affect the supply of everything from children’s toys under the Christmas tree to spare parts for your broken appliance or car in need of repair
I think the side effects of COVID-19 could be worse than the direct impact of the Delta variant. By side effects, I more people losing faith in the honesty of our government officials, a higher chance of protests and anarchy, mistreatment of those who choose to remain unvaccinated, and rising inflation. While we survived COVID-19 and 2020 as a nation, I have to question if we will survive 2021 or 2022 if more COVID waves occur.
Anything that happens in 2022 will be exacerbated by the election and the intense desire of Democrats to hold on to or expand their lead in Congress and by the Republicans to turn the tables. As the battle intensifies, I expect what little partisanship remains will go out the window and we will see more bitter acrimony between the parties and more dirty tricks by Democrats
If violence breaks out, it may well be in 2022, especially if the government tries to enforce illegal laws, executive orders and other actions that are clearly unconstitutional.
Delays and Shortages
Many companies are delaying their employee’s returns to the office and canceling large meetings, conventions and trade shows. This will hurt the hotel and airline industry, but possibly strengthen the staying power of remote work and people living in what are known as “Zoom towns,” a play on boom town because of population growth due to people who moved there but work remotely via Zoom.
I expect this will more firmly cement into place the changes that COVID-19 has made in our society. It will continue to help large online retailers while hurting small family-owned stores and non-chain restaurants. Home prices may resume their climb. Lumber prices might stop falling or even climb again. If dining out is restricted again, food shortages could recur.
Our biggest logistical challenge may be shortages of goods from overseas. This may drive more manufacturing to shift back to the U.S., but with the difficulty of hiring new workers, some companies may think twice.