Policy and people after plagues

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Students wearing face masks arrive with their parents on the first day of classes for the 2021-22 school year at Baldwin Park Elementary School. Due to the current surge in COVID-19 cases in Florida, Orange County public schools have implemented a face mask mandate for students for 30 days unless a parent chooses to opt out of the requirement. Photo by Paul Hennessy/Reuters.

The Delta surge continues, and case counts are especially high in the Southeast. There’s now less optimism about herd immunity (for several reasons) and it’s looking like covid is on its way to being endemic – a disease that’s likely to be with us for a long time but becomes less deadly due to vaccines and natural immunity and adapting to life with another virus. Andrew Sullivan argues this is not new for humans: We have learned how to do it before and we will learn to do it again. How do we get from here to there with as little death and disruption as possible? Panelists Megan McArdle and Gustavo Arellano have some ideas.

Andrew Sullivan has written about plagues and the societal changes they bring He witnessed and survived the AIDS crisis firsthand. So what’s going to happen to the world post COVID-19? Are stimulus payments and child tax credits going to stick around? We discuss. 

Then Andrew talks about the throughline of his political views and commentary, a less ideological politics as an antidote to political tribalism and religiosity, and more. Should the most ideological fights be had in culture or in politics? Is it possible to separate the two?

Finally: the fall of Andrew Cuomo, the truth about boosters, why you should queue up some Chente Fernandez this weekend, and why you should consider headphones over a boombox.




Sara Fay, Nisha Venkat