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Showing posts from March, 2020

Why a total shutdown in response to the Covid-19 pandemic is a moral imperative for India

Why a total shutdown is a moral imperative in India  There is a viral whatsapp text going on in India about the Protagoras paradox (where both sides have equally valid arguments) being applied to the total shutdown in India ( http://www.citypeopleonline.com/covid-19-protagoras-paradox/ ). As per this, on the one hand, the argument is that without the shutdown, our health systems MAY be overwhelmed and millions COULD potentially die in India. On the other hand, the increase in poverty that this shutdown WILL exacerbate may lead to a lot more misery and (paraphrasing the great modern philosopher Trump), "the cure may be worse than the disease".   Before we get into the argument and counterarguments, let us remember 2 rules: Rule number 1 : Statistics in the science of large numbers. So any analysis based on early trends when numbers are small may not sustain.  Rule number 2: correlation does not mean causation. What it means that just because 2 things seem t