This is an economic horror show. According to YouGov, UK unemployment may have jumped five per cent in a matter of weeks. The consultancy CEBR estimates that global GDP may shrink by twice the rate seen in the Great Recession. This may be the worst hit to British people’s livelihoods since the Great Depression of the 1930s.
Except one thing is different: this is a deliberate economic shutdown, made necessary to avoid a deeper, more human one. It isn’t that the economy is failing to work because the credit system has seized up as in 2008. We are actively contracting productive work in order to limit a tragedy. A recession it will be, but it is our choice in a time of acute crisis, demanding Herculean lifting and leadership by the state.