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Observations from the Top Paddock

Written by

John McLaren

Date

April 9, 2020

As optimistic as we try to be, history suggests that Scomo’s ‘Snapback’ or Trump’s ‘V’ shaped recovery graph will be more like a U shape.

Many people who lived through the ‘Great Depression’ came to define the term ‘frugal’. Even Warren Buffet, as wealthy as he is, remains a shining example; doesn’t wear flashy clothes or drive fancy cars and lives in a relatively modest home. Epic wealth but simply doesn’t indulge himself.

My mother-in-law was ‘dirt-poor’ throughout the depression and then remained frugal all her life, as did a great proportion of people everywhere. The cars they drove, the houses they lived in and even the food, was all very ‘beige’ and ordinary. And it was a conservatism that survived for not just years, but decades.

What has become interesting is the speculation around how this global crisis might change the world. This is an unprecedented health crisis that is having, and will continue to have, unprecedented economic implications.

Will we emerge from this, more conservative, more pragmatic and less likely to embrace the frivolous and the stuff that just doesn’t matter?

Part of a recent Pivot podcast talked about how we might come out the other side of this pandemic. There were a number of interesting observations and predictions.

Here are 5.

  1. The big winners will be Tech-based brands and services. Just when we thought that Tech couldn’t be more powerful, stand by for more.
  2. There will be a major realisation that the running down of the Health system over years can’t continue – the world can’t afford to be caught short again. We need a more robust, more equitable, better resourced Health system.
  3. Real ‘expertise’ will inform Governments rather than uninformed bureaucrats. The number of epidemiologists who predicted this catastrophe and then the effects can all legitimately say – ‘we told you so’. Who’s going to be brave enough to deny them in the future.
  4. Science-based policies will become stronger and more compelling.
  5. Climate change as a global issue will gain more traction with more Governments.

We would love to hear your observations and predictions.

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