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Can we put a price tag on a life? COVID-19 shutdown forces a new look

Can we measure the cost of hundreds of thousands of dead?

President Donald Trump and leading business figures are increasingly questioning the wisdom of a prolonged shutdown of the US economy — already putting millions out of work — to curb the…

  • Eduardo Porter and Jim Tankersley
  • The Sydney Morning Herald
  • The New York Times

“Our people want to return to work,” Trump declared Tuesday on Twitter, adding, “THE CURE CANNOT BE WORSE (by far) THAN THE PROBLEM!”

In essence, he was raising an issue that economists have long grappled with: How can a society assess the trade-off between economic well-being and…

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