Perspectives: The Role of Government in a National Emergency

Headline Roundup March 18th, 2020

Reporting and commentary from many ideological corners has discussed significant local, state and federal government involvement as a necessary response to the coronavirus pandemic in the U.S. Left- and right-rated voices have both examined in detail how government intervention would have to work to solve the current crisis and sustain the economy, all while establishing mechanisms to prevent future crises; some right-rated voices were especially critical of purported government failures that made it easier for the virus to get out of control. Others, particularly libertarian voices, have warned of potential federal encroachments on personal freedoms during a time of crisis.

From the Left
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OPINION

Coronavirus threatens the world’s economic life, and current proposals from governments around the globe are failing to match the scale of the crisis. Today, the chancellor, Rishi Sunak, announced £330bn of loans and that some companies would not have to pay business rates for the next 12 months. While loans help businesses in the short term, they do not compensate for losses and only allow companies to smooth costs over a longer period.

In the US, the Trump administration has suggested direct cash payments to individuals. Such measures (such as...

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From the Right
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ANALYSIS

Nothing makes government grow like a crisis. People get scared, politicians respond to that fear with promises that the state will step in and make everything better, and government ends up larger and more powerful. The pandemic of COVID-19 coronavirus threatens a world-wide wave of sickness, but it's the healthiest thing to happen to government power in a very long time. As it leaves government with a rosy glow, however, our freedom will end up more haggard than ever.

"You can look at it as socialized medicine," Rep. Ted Yoho...

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From the Center
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OPINION

The COVID-19 virus is presenting the biggest challenge our society has faced since the Great Depression and World War II. The baby boomer generation is now facing the first major societal challenge in our lifetime. How we respond will determine the outcomes of the impact of this terrible virus that is circulating through our population.

During the Great Depression President Franklin Roosevelt used the federal government to create jobs and put people back to work. Automobile companies quit making cars and instead manufactured tanks and bombers to defeat Germany...

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