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Saturday, 2 May 2020

Coronavirus Lockdown: Should We Prioritize Lives or Livelihoods?

By: Haris Gazdar

An empty street in Karachi during the lockdown. Photo Credit: Wasim Gazdar

Is there a trade-off between saving lives and saving livelihoods? Individuals make decisions about this more often than they might notice.  There are too many hazardous occupations to list: mining, security services, bomb disposal, firefighting, sanitation work, waste disposal, high rise construction jobs, and so many more. But also there are multiple health hazards in occupations otherwise deemed not to be hazardous – street workers’ exposure to traffic fumes, agricultural workers’ exposure to chemicals etc.
These are hard choices for the most part. We try to reduce hazard (health and safety regulations for example) but also, ultimately, leave it as a matter of individual choice.  A person, supposedly, decides for herself or himself if a risk is worth taking. There are many flaws in this construction of choice, but also enough in it for most of us to sleep easy, while people put themselves at risk doing jobs that need to be done for our safety or comfort.
What happens when some new source of risk emerges? Such as COVID-19? Our collective choice will determine whether this becomes one additional source of ill-health and death that individuals will have to face, or not. Do we accept it, as we accepted rising levels of air pollution, or traffic accidents – as a fact of life? Or do we say, as we did with respect to terrorism, that this new source of threat is not acceptable, that we will make all efforts to stop it becoming a norm? As a society we have the capacity for both fatalism and activism in good measure. Which do we choose to deploy now?
There are around 1.5 million deaths in Pakistan every year. Not all of them are what are defined as ‘premature’ deaths. COVID19 is a highly contagious disease. It has, to date, affected over 14,000 people in Pakistan, of whom 292 have died.  The rate of fatality has risen from 1.4% to over 2% in just the last two weeks. Even if just a tenth of our population gets infected, at the current rate of fatality we can expect around half a million deaths. An infection rate of a third would lead to a doubling of the total number of deaths compared to a normal year. If actual fatality rates are much lower, as some have suggested, the number of deaths might be as ‘low’ as 40,000. For context – road accidents claim around 40,000 lives while air pollution causes 135,000 deaths in a year. The total death toll in the ‘war on terror’ was estimated to be around 30,000.
For communities and countries, the analysis of a trade-off between saving lives and saving livelihoods is even more complex than it is for individuals. For individuals, we can and do take shelter behind the manufactured assumption of people being free to make their own choices. But for a community or a country, the choice involves saving Person A’s life over Person B’s livelihood or vice versa. Because there is no simple technical way of resolving this problem, it makes sense to pay attention to collective choices already made.
Why did we choose to draw a line under terrorism even though it was a smaller source of death than air pollution or road accidents? Was it because it arrived suddenly rather than slowly and incrementally? Was it because it threatened, if not stopped, to escalate exponentially? Was it because there was a global consensus that supported our effort? Was it because it threatened to overturn our existing order, and make us a global pariah? We made our collective choices on the basis of who we thought we were, on the basis, yes, of political considerations, but anchored in values. And once we had decided to combat terrorism, how did we frame the issue of its economic impact? Did we debate the ‘economic cost’ of eradicating terrorism, or did we belt up and create a narrative about the cost that terrorism was imposing on our economy?
Understanding the epidemiology of COVID-19 is science in the making.  That in itself would be reason enough to follow validated global practices to slow the disease down, so that our mental and organisational capacities gain time to catch up.  We know more now than we did two weeks ago, and will undoubtedly have learned more in the coming two weeks. The same goes for any analysis of the economic impact of the disease as well as measures for its containment. What happens to our economy depends not only on the morbidity and mortality faced by our people, but also on the measures that we as well as our trading, aiding and ‘remittance’ partners take. In uncertainty of this magnitude – with possible estimates of deaths ranging from 40,000 to over a million – it is not surprising that there are diverse perspectives on the trade-off between saving lives and saving livelihoods.
The question we have to ask ourselves is the following: how low would the probability of a million additional deaths have to be for us NOT to put almost everything we had into containing that number? This cannot be answered only through analytics. It is about who we believe we are, as individuals and as a collectivity. How we respond will then shape what we become.
This article first appeared in the Jinnah Institute’s ‘Lockdown Paradox’ series on 25th April 2020 and is republished here with the author’s consent.

13 comments:

  1. Hello everyone i am happy to say that i was cure from HIV/AIDS by Dr Padman with his herbal medications after i tested positive july 2016 and ever since then i have been on medications to extend my living on earth. One faithful day i was searching on line if i could get some tips on how to cure my illness and i saw a comment on how Dr Padman cure HIV with herbs,i was surprise and i contact him on the email they provided on the comment and i explain my problem to him and he also prepare the herbs and send to me which i use for one week as i was instructed by him and after 2weeks i went to hospital for checkup and i tested Negative and i am fully cured from the disease and i am so greatful to Dr Padman.You can also reach Dr Padman on his padmanlovespell@yahoo.com , https://twitter.com/padman_dr. https://padmanspell.com WhatsApp +19492293867

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. A MIRACLE TESTIMONY FOR WHAT Dr SAY0 HAS DONE FOR ME!!  
      Human PapilomaVirus (HPV) Cure Found By Dr Sayo If you're wondering why am here or why am doing this!, i just want to show appreciation to God, and i want other persons who is suffering from this deadly illness, ( Herpes, Coronary Artery Disease (Ischemic Heart Disease), Hiv/AID, Stroke, Trachea, Bronchus, and Lung Cancers, Diarrhea Diseases, Diabetes Mellitus, Dengue, Rota-virus, Other STD and others ) maybe because of ignorance. if you see this don't ignore, i was a victim of hpv, some one introduced him to me, i wrote him, told him what i was going through,  i was not too sure he could help, because i seen other persons, or post but no good outcome, he told me he could help, like others, i got the medicine or the herb whatever you may want to call it, he didn't even charge me a lot, to God i didn't want to use it, but i did, to God be the glory am the one sending this post today in good health and sound mind, ..smile.. i seek for him, i didn't mind the distance so i could show appreciation, i meet with Dr Sayo he didn't ask for anything, all he said is, 'It's God doing. I saw him treat people with different situation and problem maybe worse than yours, tell others. so am telling you today, don't ignore this, if you see this post, tell the next person who you think might need this. contact him,on email (sayoherbalhealer@gmail.com) check his FB page:  https://www.facebook.com/Sayo-Herbal-Healer-100145798345000/ OR visit his websites website; http://sayoherbalhealer.website2.me/  check blog: https://sayoherbalhealer.blogspot.com/

      Delete
  2. I am here to testify how great man called Dr KOFI helped me out with herbs and roots which he prepared for me in use of curing my Hepatitis B I takes his product (cure) for (14) days before I am to known I was totally cure out of it, and i promised him that i will testify my healing to the whole world about how he cured me which I am very happy I am doing now , Dr KOFI also cure all kinds of diseases , HEPATITIS, A,B,C , CANCER, DIABETICS , FRIBLOD,ALL KINDS OF SPELL CAST ,and so much more , please you can get him contacted on his email at drkofiherbalcure@gmail.com He can also cure following virus (1).Herpes (2).Cancer (3).Hepatitis (4).Hiv/aids (5).Pcos (6).Fibroid...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I WILL CONTINUE TO POST THIS, I'm so happy to share this testimony thank you Dr.idowu am so happy i never believed i will be hepatitis b negative again despite all i passed through Dr.idowu you are truly God sent, am so happy that am negative again thank you Dr idowu.email him
      (Dr.idowuherbalhome@gmail.com)
      If you have any problem like
      Herpes 1/2
      HIV/Aids
      Hepatitis a,b,c
      Breast cancer/cancer
      Marriage
      Pregnancy problem
      Ex back
      Penis enlargement/ass/boos..
      Whatsapp via (+2348052789941)
      Please give him a try
      🙏🙏🙏no harm in trying

      Delete
  3. I have been suffering from (HERPES) disease for the last four years and had constant pain, especially in my knees. During the first year,I had faith in God that i would be healed someday.This disease started circulating all over my body and i have been taking treatment from my doctor, few weeks ago i came on research on the internet if i could get any information concerning the prevention of this disease, on my research, i saw a testimony of someone who has been healed from (Hepatitis B and Cancer) by this Man Dr EDES and she also gave the email address of this man and advise we should contact him for any sickness that he would be of help, so i wrote to Dr EDES, telling him about my (HERPES Virus) he told me not to worry that i was going to be cured!! hmm i never believed it,, well after all the procedures and remedy given to me by this man few weeks later i started experiencing changes all over my body as the Dr assured me that i have been cured,after some time i went to my doctor to confirmed if i have be finally healed behold it was TRUE, So friends my advise is if you have such sickness or any other at all you can email Dr EDES on : (dredeshome@gmail.com)..... THESE ARE THE THINGS DR EDES CAN ALSO CURE.. GONORRHEA, HIV/AIDS , LOW SPERM COUNT, MENOPAUSE DISEASE, PREGNANCY PROBLEM, SHORT SIGHTEDNESS PROBLEM, Stroke, Bring back ex lover or wife/husband....sir i am indeed grateful for the help i will forever recommend you to my friends!!!... you can as well add Dr EDES on WhatsApp +2348151937428
    VISIT HIS WEBSITE; https://dredesherbal.webs.com

    ReplyDelete
  4. I have been suffering from (HERPES) disease for the last four years and had constant pain, especially in my knees. During the first year,I had faith in God that i would be healed someday.This disease started circulating all over my body and i have been taking treatment from my doctor, few weeks ago i came on research on the internet if i could get any information concerning the prevention of this disease, on my research, i saw a testimony of someone who has been healed from (Hepatitis B and Cancer) by this Man Dr EDES and she also gave the email address of this man and advise we should contact him for any sickness that he would be of help, so i wrote to Dr EDES, telling him about my (HERPES Virus) he told me not to worry that i was going to be cured!! hmm i never believed it,, well after all the procedures and remedy given to me by this man few weeks later i started experiencing changes all over my body as the Dr assured me that i have been cured,after some time i went to my doctor to confirmed if i have be finally healed behold it was TRUE, So friends my advise is if you have such sickness or any other at all you can email Dr EDES on : (dredeshome@gmail.com)..... THESE ARE THE THINGS DR EDES CAN ALSO CURE.. GONORRHEA, HIV/AIDS , LOW SPERM COUNT, MENOPAUSE DISEASE, PREGNANCY PROBLEM, SHORT SIGHTEDNESS PROBLEM, Stroke, Bring back ex lover or wife/husband....sir i am indeed grateful for the help i will forever recommend you to my friends!!!... you can as well add Dr EDES on WhatsApp +2348151937428
    VISIT HIS WEBSITE; https://dredesherbal.webs.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I WILL CONTINUE TO POST THIS, I'm so happy to share this testimony thank you Dr.idowu am so happy i never believed i will be hepatitis b negative again despite all i passed through Dr.idowu you are truly God sent, am so happy that am negative again thank you Dr idowu.email him
      (Dr.idowuherbalhome@gmail.com)
      If you have any problem like
      Herpes 1/2
      HIV/Aids
      Hepatitis a,b,c
      Breast cancer/cancer
      Marriage
      Pregnancy problem
      Ex back
      Penis enlargement/ass/boos..
      Whatsapp via (+2348052789941)
      Please give him a try
      🙏🙏🙏no harm in trying

      Delete
  5. I WILL CONTINUE TO POST THIS, I'm so happy to share this testimony thank you Dr.idowu am so happy i never believed i will be hepatitis b negative again despite all i passed through Dr.idowu you are truly God sent, am so happy that am negative again thank you Dr idowu.email him
    (Dr.idowuherbalhome@gmail.com)
    If you have any problem like
    Herpes 1/2
    HIV/Aids
    Hepatitis a,b,c
    Breast cancer/cancer
    Marriage
    Pregnancy problem
    Ex back
    Penis enlargement/ass/boos..
    Whatsapp via (+2348052789941)
    Please give him a try
    🙏🙏🙏no harm in trying

    ReplyDelete
  6. I WILL CONTINUE TO POST THIS, I'm so happy to share this testimony thank you Dr.idowu am so happy i never believed i will be hepatitis b negative again despite all i passed through Dr.idowu you are truly God sent, am so happy that am negative again thank you Dr idowu.email him
    (Dr.idowuherbalhome@gmail.com)
    If you have any problem like
    Herpes 1/2
    HIV/Aids
    Hepatitis a,b,c
    Breast cancer/cancer
    Marriage
    Pregnancy problem
    Ex back
    Penis enlargement/ass/boos..
    Whatsapp via (+2348052789941)
    Please give him a try
    🙏🙏🙏no harm in trying

    ReplyDelete
  7. I WILL CONTINUE TO POST THIS, I'm so happy to share this testimony thank you Dr.idowu am so happy i never believed i will be hepatitis b negative again despite all i passed through Dr.idowu you are truly God sent, am so happy that am negative again thank you Dr idowu.email him
    (Dr.idowuherbalhome@gmail.com)
    If you have any problem like
    Herpes 1/2
    HIV/Aids
    Hepatitis a,b,c
    Breast cancer/cancer
    Marriage
    Pregnancy problem
    Ex back
    Penis enlargement/ass/boos..
    Whatsapp via (+2348052789941)
    Please give him a try
    🙏🙏🙏no harm in trying

    ReplyDelete
  8. QUICK RELIABLE CURE, Am so glad expressing my profound gratitude to a man that is so concerned about other people's well being. I was suffering from (HERPES SIMPLEX VIRUS) over 4 years, i have spent thousands of dollars in buying expensive drugs and visiting several hospitals in different countries, i was really in severe pain "until" one glorious morning, i read about Doctor Razor on the internet on how he had helped and cured so many people suffering from HERPES 1&2, HPV, CANCER, HIV/AIDS, ALZHEIMER, FIBROID, ENLARGED PROSTATE, HEMORRHOIDS' PILE and HEART DISEASE ETC. So i contacted him through this Email: drrazorherbalhome@gmail.com and i shared my problems with him, he gave me the healing procedure and i followed them. 18 days later he told me to go for a medical test, behold the result was negative, now am (HERPES SIMPLEX VIRUS)  Negative. I just want to use this platform to thank Doctor Razor for curing me from that deadly virus and also for exposing his herbal cure to the world, please you can as well contact him at drrazorherbalhome@gmail.com (or) Whatsapp/Call him +2349065420442 for solutions to your health problems

    ReplyDelete
  9. QUICK RELIABLE CURE, Am so glad expressing my profound gratitude to a man that is so concerned about other people's well being. I was suffering from (HERPES SIMPLEX VIRUS) over 4 years, i have spent thousands of dollars in buying expensive drugs and visiting several hospitals in different countries, i was really in severe pain "until" one glorious morning, i read about Doctor Razor on the internet on how he had helped and cured so many people suffering from HERPES 1&2, HPV, CANCER, HIV/AIDS, ALZHEIMER, FIBROID, ENLARGED PROSTATE, HEMORRHOIDS' PILE and HEART DISEASE ETC. So i contacted him through this Email: drrazorherbalhome@gmail.com and i shared my problems with him, he gave me the healing procedure and i followed them. 18 days later he told me to go for a medical test, behold the result was negative, now am (HERPES SIMPLEX VIRUS)  Negative. I just want to use this platform to thank Doctor Razor for curing me from that deadly virus and also for exposing his herbal cure to the world, please you can as well contact him at drrazorherbalhome@gmail.com (or) Whatsapp/Call him +2349065420442 for solutions to your health problems

    ReplyDelete
  10. A MIRACLE TESTIMONY FOR WHAT Dr SAY0 HAS DONE FOR ME!!  
    Human PapilomaVirus (HPV) Cure Found By Dr Sayo If you're wondering why am here or why am doing this!, i just want to show appreciation to God, and i want other persons who is suffering from this deadly illness, ( Herpes, Coronary Artery Disease (Ischemic Heart Disease), Hiv/AID, Stroke, Trachea, Bronchus, and Lung Cancers, Diarrhea Diseases, Diabetes Mellitus, Dengue, Rota-virus, Other STD and others ) maybe because of ignorance. if you see this don't ignore, i was a victim of hpv, some one introduced him to me, i wrote him, told him what i was going through,  i was not too sure he could help, because i seen other persons, or post but no good outcome, he told me he could help, like others, i got the medicine or the herb whatever you may want to call it, he didn't even charge me a lot, to God i didn't want to use it, but i did, to God be the glory am the one sending this post today in good health and sound mind, ..smile.. i seek for him, i didn't mind the distance so i could show appreciation, i meet with Dr Sayo he didn't ask for anything, all he said is, 'It's God doing. I saw him treat people with different situation and problem maybe worse than yours, tell others. so am telling you today, don't ignore this, if you see this post, tell the next person who you think might need this. contact him,on email (sayoherbalhealer@gmail.com) check his FB page:  https://www.facebook.com/Sayo-Herbal-Healer-100145798345000/ OR visit his websites website; http://sayoherbalhealer.website2.me/  check blog: https://sayoherbalhealer.blogspot.com/

    ReplyDelete