When done to a 60 year old building that destruction is understandable. When done to an economy, not so much. Image courtesy of Adobe Stock.

The government ordered shutdown of the economy in 2020 has devastated primary education, secondary education, higher education, travel industry, entertainment industry, small businesses, restaurants, physical health, mental health, and detective/ preventive treatment of chronic and deadly disease. Level of unemployment is second only to the Great Depression. We have seen evaporation of wealth, savings, trust in government officials at all levels, and trust in every public health official in the country.

I have over 100 posts protesting the foolishness and destruction this year with those posts containing close to 90,000 words describing the devastation.

This will be the last routine post describing the intentional disruption we have suffered this year. I will have one more post describing actual science that is surfacing, which is in sharp contrast to the alleged “science” that has driven the demolition of the country.

Discussion in this post:

  • Devastation in travel industry
  • Drastic increase in U.S. poverty rate
  • Collapse of incoming freshman class at U.S. colleges

Indicators of the devastation in the travel industry

11/4/20 – Wall Street Journal – How Coronavirus Ravaged Travel in 2020 – The Middle Seat column tabulated a number of indicators showing the illness across entire travel industry.

What does the collapse of an entire industry look like? A few stats:

Traffic at three largest New York airports:

  • down 95% – collapse in traffic count in mid April compared to prior year
  • Down 87% – decline in traffic in July compared to prior year

Capacity of the worldwide airline industry, which is measured as terms of the number of available seat-miles:

  • Down 73% – collapse in April compared to prior year
  • Down 58% – year-to-year decline in October

Number of parked planes, in other words taken out of service:

  • 60%, or 15,500 airplanes – portion of entire world wide fleet grounded in April
  • 31%, or 9,341 airplanes – portion of worldwide fleet grounded in November

Decline in count of passengers screened by TSA:

  • Over 90% – traffic passenger count in mid April
  • Down 66% – drop in passenger screen on Halloween compared to prior year
  • down two-thirds – overall drop in travel compared to a year ago

Hotel occupancy rate nationwide:

  • 22% – occupancy rate in April
  • 48% – occupancy rate the second to last week in October compared to prior year
  • down 32% – change in occupancy rate last year compared to prior year, which means the occupancy rate was 80% a year ago

Hotel occupancy in Oahu:

  • 7% – April occupancy
  • 23% – occupancy week prior to article– previous week was the first time since the beginning of the pandemic that a two-week quarantine was not required for everyone arriving in Hawaii

Airline ticket sales by travel agencies to corporate customers:

  • down 96% – drop in April – yes that is one ticket, count ’em one,  sold that month for every 20 sold a year earlier
  • Down 83%, yes still an over 80% drop – sales for week ending 11/1/20 compared to a year prior

Rising poverty rates due to shutdowns

12/16/20 – Greenwich Time – Nearly 8 million Americans have fallen into poverty since the summer Poverty rate in the United States is 11.7% in November, which is up a whopping 2.4% since June.

That is the biggest increase in one year during the 60 years the US government has been tracking that statistic.

Two researchers tracking the poverty rate say the number of people poverty dropped during the spring, due to federal assistance, specifically the $1200 stimulus check and extra $600 a week unemployment compensation. Since June however, the poverty rate has increased every month.

Incoming college freshman class collapses by 22% due to shutdown

12/17/20 – NPR – “Losing A Generation”: Fall College Enrollment Plummets For 1st-Year Students – Graph in article shows enrollment in college has been steadily dropping since 2012. Drop in 2020 is a visible deterioration in enrollment.

Article cites stats indicating enrollment in fall 2020 is down 3.6% from the prior year, which is double the rate of decline in 2019.

The overall drop hides the collapse of the incoming freshman class. Enrollment in the fall of students who graduated high school in spring 2020 is down 21.7%. One-fifth.

When broken out between student categorized as being from high-poverty high schools compared to low-poverty high schools the drops are 16.4% for low-poverty schools and a catastrophic 32.6% for high poverty schools.

Poor kids are suffering extra worse. If you think in such terms, where is there any justice in that? If you think differently, how is that in any way fair?

That decline is an approximation for the number students who won’t go to college at all and will have the future earning suffer as a result, along with drop in productivity across the economy and shrinking overall level of education in the country.

Oh, yeah. Impact on colleges and universities will be severe.


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