Covid time is a flat circle, especially in FL. Remember when the first Covid wave started in the NY area, and right-wingers demanded that we apologize to Ron DeSantis — just as infections and deaths soared across the Sunbelt? 1/
Then that episode went down the memory hole and it was back to anti-mask and social distancing being great — until the Delta wave wreaked havoc across the red states, FL in particular 2/
And then that wave subsided, and until a few days ago DeSantis's people were boasting about their low case rate as Omicron hit the Northeast first. Sure enough 3/
Pretty obvious that Omicron will soon be everywhere. Hospitalizations and deaths still low in southern states (but what the hell is happening in PA?) But they're lagging indicators. Once they catch up, what will matter is vaccination rates 4/
I've been following the NYC data, both for personal reasons and bc it tends to be where the Covid future happens first. It's really stunning 5/
And yes, while there are multiple reasons people don't get vaxxed, at this point it's very partisan, as @charles_gaba keeps documenting (especially if you exclude the suspect Miami-Dade numbers) 6/
So it seems a pretty safe prediction that we're heading for another wave of red death — followed a few months later by claims that the governors responsible actually did a great job. Sigh. 7/

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More from @paulkrugman

1 Jan
Do you share my sense of dread about the year ahead? If not, why not? 1/
At this point I'm not personally all that afraid of Covid. I do know vaxxed/boosted people who've had breakthrough cases, but both anecdotes and the available data say that these cases are usually mild. For those acting responsibly, we're down to normal-risks-of-life levels 2/
Longer term I'm terrified of climate change. But at this point that fear has been overtaken by the near-term risk of political catastrophe right here in America 3/
Read 7 tweets
30 Dec 21
I am not a free-market zealot. But this is truly stupid 1/
Price controls VERY occasionally have their uses — during wartime when rationing is rampant and perceived fairness/lack of profiteering are important 2/
There's also a *possible* argument for temporary controls to break a wage-price spiral that is persisting despite a weak economy — although making that work is so hard that it would be a strategy of last resort 3/
Read 5 tweets
19 Dec 21
Absolutely. As someone who began my academic career in the late 70s, as equilibrium macro was tightening its grip, we all knew that fundamental business cycle issues were a minefield nobody with a reality sense would enter 1/
Try to publish anything in which monetary policy — let alone fiscal policy — did what it clearly did in the real world, and you would be blockaded from the journals and frozen out of appointment committees. You had to keep yr views private and build your reputation elsewhere 2/
International macro was a bit better because Rudi Dornbusch's work kept sticky-price macro respectable. But even so you had to frame your work as being abt exchange rates or financial crises and hope people didn't notice the Keynesian core 3/…
Read 5 tweets
17 Dec 21
Wondering whether David will get the kind of hate mail I've been receiving over my Kentucky piece 1/…
The odd thing was that I didn't say anything negative about the people of Kentucky (as opposed to their politicians), or assert in any way that they were responsible for their state's problems. I just pointed out the arithmetic 2/…
All I said was that KY should acknowledge that it benefits from a transfer union in which richer states subsidize poorer — as they should! Btw, I did a scatterplot on this a couple of years back 3/
Read 4 tweets
16 Dec 21
My long take on inflation. Timing was fortuitously good — right after the Fed's sort-of pivot, which I was able to incorporate 1/…
I say sort-of pivot because while the Fed has stopped saying "transitory", it still seems to believe that much of the inflation we're currently experiencing will fade away without the need to impose a lot of economic pain 2/
One odd thing about this debate is that the actual policy demands of the inflation hawks have been pretty moderate: an end to bond purchases (which I've always supported) and a baseline of fairly modest rate hikes. And that's what the Fed just delivered 3/
Read 5 tweets
11 Dec 21
Aside from priorities, is this even true? Is there any good reason to believe that inflation hits low-income households especially hard? 1/
Inflation redistributes from creditors to debtors — not exactly a burden on the bottom half of the income distribution 2/
The great disinflation after the 1970s was associated with soaring, not falling, inequality — mostly not causal, but hardly supportive of the claim 3/
Read 4 tweets

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