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California’s lockdowns were as effective as a slow speed limit

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California, Florida, and Texas are among the largest U.S. states, and all three shut down before the Coronoavirus was widespread. They also have similar demographics, and a mix of city and rural populations. I have been writing about the relative success of the coronavirus virus response in Florida and Texas compared to California since last August . The coronavirus is a deadly plague that has affected countless lives. The data now shows that the quasi-lockdowns implemented by some U.S. States, with California at the forefront, did not have a material impact on death rates. California’s lockdowns have saved 3,500 lives versus Florida and 8,000 lives versus Texas, simply by extrapolating the per capita death rate and not adjusting for demographics such as Florida’s elderly population. 3,500 to 8,000 lives are not a trifling number of lives to lose and the impact of loss on families and friends is heartbreaking. That said, we must consider that California is a large state with a populati

Florida and Texas flattened the curve. California did not.

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After the initial shutdowns in March, ventilators, PPE, and testing shortages were mostly solved by early May. Florida, Texas, and other states that followed the original plan to flatten the curve for hospitalizations have re-opened their economies while maintaining hospital capacity. California opted for a novel virus suppression strategy that has destroyed its small businesses with a profoundly negative impact on minorities. California is now about to run out of hospital capacity. In March, we were all introduced to “flatten the curve.” During a surge, patients in need of a hospital bed would have one available. The entire country pitched in for two weeks , followed by 30 days . In that hectic time, the Federal government and states prepared hospitals with ventilators, PPE, and testing infrastructure. As I wrote in August, states then reached a critical juncture : re-open with prepared hospitals per the original virus mitigation plan or continue lockdowns in an attempt to suppress th

The alt-cities: Why Tech, Finance, and Music chose Austin, Miami, and Nashville

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Three months ago, my wife and I moved from San Francisco to Miami. I previously lived in San Francisco for over 23 years, where I started multiple companies and worked at companies like Sun Microsystems. Given the spate of people now moving, I thought it would be useful to aggregate the unique characteristics that have turned Austin, Miami, and Nashville into such hot destinations. Globalization and network effects have produced centers of industry in mega-cities, such as finance in New York and technology in San Francisco. It takes a monumental event to displace an industry from a mega-city; the only such event in the modern era is the handover of Hong Kong to China, which shifted Asian finance to Singapore. The coronavirus is now as significant an event as the handover of Hong Kong. Three alt-cities (alternative cities) for key industries are quickly emerging: finance from New York to Miami, technology from San Francisco to Austin, and music from Los Angeles to Nashville. There is al