Coronavirus Will Change the World Permanently. Here’s How.
Revived trust in institutions.Michiko Kakutani is author of the 2018 bestseller The Death of Truth and former chief book critic of the New York Times. The coronavirus pandemic, one hopes, will jolt Americans into a realization that the institutions and values Donald Trump has spent his presidency assailing are essential to the functioning of a democracy—and to its ability to grapple effectively with a national crisis. A recognition that government institutions—including those entrusted with protecting our health, preserving our liberties and overseeing our national security—need to be staffed with experts (not political loyalists), that decisions need to be made through a reasoned policy process and predicated on evidence-based science and historical and geopolitical knowledge (not on Trump-ian “alternative facts,” political expediency or what Thomas Pynchon called, in Gravity’s Rainbow, “a chaos of peeves, whims, hallucinations and all-round assholery”). Fast forward to 2020.
• What does our future look like after the Covid-19 pandemic?