In a telephone interview on CNBC’s Squawk Box, Senator Ted Cruz argues that many of the changes Americans are making to cope with lockdowns, unemployment, kids at home and general fears over the coronavirus are bound to be long-lasting, altering the face of the economy and daily life.
His position bolsters why cryptocurrency proponents believe that the case for Bitcoin and its numerous cousins will become more clear as more people understand how they function, without physical bank branches and the employees who are needed to settle transactions around the world.
Cruz tells host Andrew Ross Sorkin that Americans are moving toward all things digital.
“I think this crisis changes everybody, and let me talk both about ‘us’ as a people and then ‘us’ as politics. Us as a people – the economic repercussions – I think are going to be far-reaching. You’ve got millions of people now learning to work from home. I’m sitting here in my living room doing an interview on the phone.
I’ve been working from home now for weeks. There are a lot of people who are learning, between telephone and email and teleconferencing, that you can do an enormous amount in your house.
This morning both my girls start doing distance learning at school. So we’ve got them set up, each one on a different computer in a different room in the house. And I think you’ve got millions of people that are functionally homeschooling, whether they wanted to or not.
And then, in terms of how people get goods and services – I don’t know a person who isn’t using UberEats or DoorDash or whatever app they have to get food delivered to their house, who isn’t ordering groceries online, who isn’t going to Amazon and getting almost anything you want delivered online. Those repercussions are going to last.
Look, we were moving toward a world where digital was replacing bricks and mortar. After this crisis, I think there will be a very substantial number of Americans who stick with the new patterns they develop. So I think that is consequential in terms of our entire economy and the decisions that are made, the ordering decisions going forward.”
“After this crisis, there will be a very substantial number of Americans who stick with the new patterns they’ve developed. That is consequential in terms of our entire economy,” says @SenTedCruz on how #coronavirus will change the country. pic.twitter.com/zy8O6rJD8N
— Squawk Box (@SquawkCNBC) March 30, 2020
While digitization and isolation are not one and the same, the new norm may be a society that continues to embrace face-to-face human interactions while the economy offloads an increasing number of systems to platforms that are more resilient against a coronavirus-style shock.
Reactions on Twitter vary, with people both supporting Cruz’s viewpoint while others argue that a post-coronavirus world where people are huddled up in their homes, devoid of human contact, is unrealistic.
“Sounded like comedy hour on squawk box.”
“I know this crisis is ongoing. I really do believe that this crisis will save more lives than it takes. It is a wakeup call. It will change, fundamentally, the way we organize our preparedness. It will lead to an expert plan of action and execution. leading to a better system.”
“Covid-19 is also being used to attack our economic system and way of life. It’s not about the virus. We’re under attack on so many levels with help from within.”
“This is nonsense. Time will reveal our true need for F2F contact. This idea that our ‘new normal’ is a Amazon, DoorDash dependent society whereby I don’t need to interact with others and live my life as I live it now, is nonsense.
Once we get beyond this, keep an eye on the retail, airline and restaurant sectors. Especially those that invest in Body Temperature scanning. We need each other and truth be told, we actually want to be around others.”
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