by John Rubino
Let’s say President Trump is right about the coronavirus “miraculously” fading away as temperatures rise in the Summer. Will things then go back to the old normal of globalization, free trade and finance-driven “growth”?
Almost certainly not, because the psychological damage has already been done. Over the past couple of weeks the modern globalized economy with its multi-nation supply chains and just-in-time inventory systems has been forced to recognize that such a system only works in a nearly-perfect environment. Take the iPhone: It is designed in the US, its constituent raw materials are mined and processed in numerous other countries and the resulting components are then shipped for assembly to vast Chinese factories.
Break any link in this chain and the whole thing grinds to a halt. One unavailable commodity or component, one out-of-service assembly plant, one country with closed borders or out-of-control civil unrest, and a multi-billion dollar revenue stream evaporates.