Coronavirus Over-Reaction

by | Apr 20, 2020


Throughout my 30 years in Congress, I noticed that very few of the Democrats in the House had ever run or even worked in a small or medium-sized business.

In fact, while I got along with them personally, I found that some Democratic members and career bureaucrats seemed to have an anti-business attitude.

Now, I am witnessing a very similar and fascinating corollary in response to the shutdown of most of America’s small businesses.

Those who are government employees at all levels, including members of Congress, don’t seem to mind, and many are probably even enjoying their extended vacations. After all, they are still drawing their salaries.

Many government employees and members of Congress seem to be supporting, or in some cases, even demanding that the shutdown continue for an even longer period of time.

Most who own small businesses want to get their firms open again before they go under. And the Rush Limbaugh Show recently ran a report from CNN saying that over 80% of US jobs were in small and medium-sized businesses.

When I see all these governors and mayors on television, they appear to me to be at the height of their glory, holier than thou, and feeling very heroic and powerful.

I am not downplaying the seriousness of this Coronavirus. It is terrible that so many have died from this and that so many more have been sickened by it.

But one of the early reports said the flu causes from 29,000 to 63,000 deaths in the US every year, with the average being around 36,000.

I wonder what the reaction would have been two or three years ago if there had been several weeks of nonstop, 24-hour-a-day news reports about how many thousands around the world had been sickened and/or had died from the flu that year.

Dr. Alex Berezow, a microbiologist, wrote a column in the April 4th USA Today enttled “Stop the panic. Don’t let the Coronavirus win.”

He wrote that “a total economic collapse would tear at the fabric of society and also pose a threat to public health. And it raises the specter that our ‘cure’ for COVID-19 may be far more harmful than the disease itself.

This Country is over $23 trillion in debt already. The Congress has passed bills totaling well over another two trillion, spending money we do not have at an unprecedented rate.

Added to this are reports that the Federal Reserve has added another four trillion. It seems to me that printing all this money out of very thin air runs a real risk of inflation such as Germany had in the 1920s.

Eric Metaxas, in his book Bonhoeffer, wrote that the German mark began a “free fall”in 1921, dropping to 75 marks to the dollar, and by “disastrous “ 1923, had dropped to 7,000 marks to the dollar early that year, but to an unimaginable four billion to the dollar by November. And Germany was considered the best-educated country in the world then.

I hope we come to our senses before it is too late.


  • Rep. John J. Duncan Jr.

    John James Duncan Jr. is an American politician who served as the U.S. representative for Tennessee's 2nd congressional district from 1988 to 2019. A lawyer, former judge, and former long serving member of the Army National Guard, he is a member of the Republican Party.

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