Elsewhere in Latin America, Argentina experienced a similar mid-lockdown explosion in cases and deaths. Its lockdown began on 20 March and was supposed to be short and sharp. It ended up becoming the longest continuous lockdown in the world. In June, Time magazine hailed Argentina’s success in containing the virus. But not long after, cases began to surge. The deadliest day of its pandemic was on day 145 of lockdown.
But the conventional wisdom that more lockdown means fewer deaths simply does not hold true in the real world. There is globally no association, let alone causation, between lockdowns and Covid deaths.
The burden of this has fallen overwhelmingly on the poorest in society, while billionaires have watched their wealth multiply. In the developing world, the World Bank estimates that an additional 150million people will fall into ‘extreme poverty’.
Children have born a disproportionate brunt of the lockdowns – even though children face very minor risks from Covid and school closures are not associated with reduced transmission. Nevertheless, an estimated 1.5 billion children – 87 per cent – have been affected by school closures around the world. There is now an obscene gulf in access to education between rich and poor, between the privately and state educated, and between those with access to home learning via the internet and those without.Lockdown: a deadly, failed experiment – spiked