Why we’ll keep flying

That will certainly be difficult for staff who lose their jobs, and the owners whose companies have gone up in smoke. Still, with spare planes, crews and runways plus that still existing desire to go see the world, new companies are sure to spring up to fill the gaps left by the companies that have gone under. Say’s Law, that supply creates demand, isn’t really wholly true. But the inverse, that demand calls forth supply of something technically possible, is. Especially when the landscape is littered with the supplies necessary to make it possible.

However many airlines go bust in this difficult time it’s simply not going to change, in any medium or long term sense, the general ability to fly off somewhere. Simply because it’s observably true that people like doing it, it’s known how to do it, therefore it will be done by those eager to profit.

The worse it becomes for extant – and soon not to be extant – airlines the easier it will be in the near future for a new one to be set up by any would-be entrepreneur with a bit of get up and go. After all, whatever the fallout of this dreadful period, Covid-19 is surely not going to kill off the greed of capitalists?

11 thoughts on “Why we’ll keep flying”

  1. Off topic but guess who…..

    “So do I have coronavirus? Let me be honest, and say I do not know.

    All I know is I have a flu type illness that is not going the way these things always usually do with me.

    But that, I suggest, does indicate the failure of government policy.”

  2. Well I’m doing my bit, flown Mackay to Newcastle today, back tomorrow. Maybe 20 on Mackay to Brisbane flight, perhaps double that to Newcastle.

  3. He gets flu “usually”. What’s wrong with the bloody man? The last serious flu I had – and therefore possibly the last genuine flu I had – was decades ago.

  4. This assumes that we are going to get through the worst of this crisis. If the disease becomes endemic and it turns out that being infected doesn’t create immunity, then 5-10% of the population is going to be in ICU indefinitely, with people cycling in and out as they recover and are reinfected.

    The only resolutions to that are either a vaccine and a multi-year programme of rolling it out to crush the disease, or a massive shutdown of travel to divide humanity into groups small enough that it can’t become endemic.

    This is unlikely – the only way it’s not going to create immunity is rapid mutation, and if it does mutate rapidly, then it’ll probably evolve to be less harmful; if it turns into an endemic disease no worse than flu, then we’ll just all start living with it, as we do with the flu itself.

  5. As it’s a RNA virus, so mutates much more easily, it’s much more likely to become endemic like all the other coronaviruses we live with. That is, just another ‘cold’ virus. And the cold varieties presumably have a death rate, but lower than the current one. But we live with it.

  6. Not just air travel – Eurostar departures was virtually empty last Thursday, although there still seemed to be people arriving. No doubt normally packed commuter trains are also less full – and I wouldn’t be surprised to see that continue after this panic ends, if people and businesses have adjusted to homeworking by then.

  7. From Richard Beale at the Francis Crick institute
    “All RNA viruses (influenza, for example) have a special enzyme that copies RNA into RNA. These RNA-dependent RNA polymerases are usually very sloppy copyists. They do not bother with proofreading, and make huge numbers of errors. This high mutation rate enables them to evolve very rapidly; that’s one reason we need a new flu vaccine every year. Coronaviruses have to be much more careful, or else their huge genome will accumulate too many errors. Their mutation rate is therefore lower, so we may be able to develop a fairly effective vaccine – though it will take a year or two, assuming it’s possible at all.”

  8. @Recusant


    Richard Gadsden = Private Fraser, BBC, C4: “We’re doomed”

    A few maybes, mights, coulds along with fewer ifs would be more entertaining

    Perspective: In UK ~1,680 die every day Total ‘with’ CV-19 UK Deaths is? Daily death rate this week vs Mar 2019?

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