A truly excellent book that explains where our pandemic response went wrong, and how we can understand those failings using the tools of economics. --Tyler Cowen, coauthor of the blog Marginal RevolutionHave you ever stopped to wonder why hand sanitizer was missing from your pharmacy for months after the COVID-19 pandemic hit? Why some employers and employees were arguing over workers being re-hired during the first COVID-19 lockdown? Why passenger airlines were able to get their own ring-fenced bailout from Congress?Economics in One Virus answers all these pandemic-related questions and many more, drawing on the dramatic events of 2020 to bring to life some of the most important principles of economic thought. Packed with supporting data and the best new academic evidence, this book offers a crash-course in economics analysis through the applied case-study of the COVID-19 pandemic, to help explain everything from why the U.S. was underprepared for the pandemic to how economists go about valuing the lives saved from lockdowns.After completing this highly readable, fast-paced, and provocative virus-themed economic tour, readers will be able to make much better sense of the events that they've lived through. Perhaps more importantly, the insights on everything from the role of the price mechanism to trade and specialization will grant even those wholly new to economics the skills to think like an economist in their own lives and when evaluating the choices of their political leaders.
About the Author
Ryan Bourne occupies the R. Evan Scharf Chair for the Public Understanding of Economics at the Cato Institute and is a columnist for the Daily Telegraph and ConservativeHome. He has written on a number of economic issues, including fiscal policy, inequality, price and wage controls, and infrastructure spending, and has contributed to numerous books, including: Flaws and Ceilings: Price Controls and the Damage they Cause; Taxation, Spending, and Economic Growth; and A Fiscal Cliff: New Perspectives on the U.S. Federal Debt Crisis. He is coauthor, along with Kwasi Kwarteng and Jonathan Dupont, of A Time for Choosing: Free Enterprise in Twenty-First Century Britain. Before joining Cato, Bourne was Head of Public Policy at the Institute of Economic Affairs and Head of Economic Research at the Centre for Policy Studies (both in the UK). He has extensive broadcast and print media experience, and has appeared on BBC News, CNN, Sky News, CNBC, and Fox Business Network. Bourne holds a BA and an MPhil in economics from the University of Cambridge.