The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

Civilization Ending Long Covid Pt. 2 — 320K Long Term Sick In UK Labor Force

Starting in 2020, an increase of 320K long term sick people. We tend to do percentages off the population, but the UK Labor Force is 34.7 million people. That means, in 2 years, what is probably most Long Covid, caused about a .92% decrease in the labor force just due to long Covid. Another .38% of the population left the UK Labor force for other reasons.

Where’d I get this from? The Bank of England!

Since end of 2019- we’ve seen a fall of 450,000 (1.3% of labour force- a very large decrease in labour force … The persistence & scale in this drop has been a surprise to us. We’ve seen an increase in long-term sickness in that number – around 320,000 people…

Falling participation in the labour market is not a lack of job opportunities, but a rise in long term sickness linked to the pandemic. The issue of Long Covid is very serious.

Last week I wrote that a big part of rising labor costs was a tight labor market and…

much of why the labor market is tight is because they let a million people die and probably millions be disabled by not handling Covid

I’ve been emphasizing for a long time that Long Covid was going to be the real problem. .92% may not seem like much, but remember:

  • You can get Covid over and over again;
  • There is no long lasting or complete immunity from Covid either from vaccines or natural immunity;
  • New variants are being born all the time and the ones which survive and thirve are generally optimized against whatever is the biggest barrier to current spread;
  • Each time you get Covid you can get long term damage. It may not be sympomatic, but it’s there.
  • So the next time you get Covid, you’re more likely to get symptomatic Long Covid.

Let us assume, for the sake of argument, that UK and US reductions in the labor force are about the same, in percentage terms. (Death rates in the UK are slightly lower than the US, but I don’t trust either country’s stats all that much.)

The US Labor force in 2021 was about 161.2 million. Multiply that by .0092 and we have a reduction of approximately 1 million, four hundred and eight-three thousand people (1.483 million). Now, imagine the US loses that number of people from the workforce every two years?

Doesn’t take long from those numbers to be catastrophic, does it?

Understand that marginal rates control the capitalist market.

The good side of this is that taking so many people out of the workforce absolutely will increase wages without wage controls. And it will keep doing so for as long as we refuse to control Long Covid and have no effective AND widely deployed cure. Problem is, while we do way too much bullshit labor and could get by with less workers, I doubt it’s going to be Wall Street parasites whose jobs we don’t fill, it’ll be people who actually make, grow, mine or distribute goods that matter, and people like nurses and orderlies and teachers and so on who are actually productive, rather than parasites at best.

Meanwhile, China, who supposedly wrecked their economy with Zero-Covid, will not be suffering under this reduction. (The Shanghai outbreak is now almost completely under control, much to the dismay of pro-death and disabling neoliberals.)

And this is before the fact that we will need to take care of all those sick people, though I suppose the American solution will be to let them use up all their savings, get thrown off any private healthcare, perhaps manage to get on Medicaid and eventually wind up on the street and die.

Blah, blah, blah.

The point is that our civilization CANNOT survive this sort of disabling if it just keeps going on and on. Multiply by all the problems we’re going to have with climate change, and stir in a mix of nuclear-armed Great Power competition and the results are catastrophic.

It’s Long Covid or a real cure or a miracle where Covid dies out by itself (not seeing how that happens when natural immunity is limited), or we are in for a world of hurt.

Take precautions. It’s not death you should worry about, it’s disabling. I don’t know what happens after death, but I do know that a lot of very bad things can happen to you while you’re still alive.



Who Wins and Loses Because of the Ukraine War?


Prologue of Spring of a Dawn, A Novella By Stirling Newberry


  1. Soredemos

    Nasal vaccines increasingly look like they’ll be the miracle cure.

  2. Trinity

    I know you were focused on the labor force in this article.

    They see 320,000 long term sick in the reduced labor force. But how many long term sick are outside the labor force? How many are young people (never to be future laborers), and how many are old people who will require long term care?

    Unsurprising that they focused on the labor force, and ignored the problem in the population overall.

  3. GM

    It’s ~1% completely out of the labor force but that is actually optimistically misleading.

    Those are the most extreme cases

    Then there are is a lot of lost productivity in people who are not so extremely sick as to officially leave their jobs altogether, but are not their former selves either.

    That’s a large continuum — some may be still in the labor force, but have switched jobs to something that allows them to work from home while prior to it they worked something much more demanding (and productive), others are still on their previous jobs, but doing them in varying degrees of diminished capacity, etc.

    And of course there are countless more waves to come, so these numbers will be always growing…

  4. BaryonicBeing

    We had a plumber come the other day, was wearing a N95 plus cloth mask. One of his co-workers got long covid and had to quit due to fatigue. His brother in law had long covid and is having trouble working too. His daughter has such severe allergies that she can’t get the vaccine and has practically withdrawn from any indoor shared activities. Just an anecdotal sample, but probably not uncommon.

  5. Scott

    Well I agree generally with the premise they’re just two factors that need to be taken into consideration.

    One. Long-term covid is not necessarily permanent COVID. People do recover from long-term covid. Therefore adding long-term coverage from your year one plus long-term coverage from year two doesn’t necessarily make sense.

    As well the Bank of England statement doesn’t necessarily show that the people with long-term coverage are also people taken out of the labor force. They could be the already retired elderly who are the most likely to get covid.

  6. BlizzardOfOzzz

    Tired: warmer weather will end civilization
    Wired: the sniffles will end civilization

  7. different clue


    You will prepare for the future you expect. Others will prepare for the future they expect.

    Who is right? Who is wrong? Let Darwin decide. And let the Darwinners offer zero assistance or even concern to the Darlosers.

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén