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The sentiment here can be summed up from the comments of the top of the USA leadership, "Go ask China that question". Without a doubt the virus has taken insular nationalism to a height not seen in almost a century, with bad results.


Hi Professor, this is a very interesting trend to note. After some research I came across many examples of leaders exploiting a crisis to their advantage in the present and past:

Hungary - Last month, Hungary's parliament passed a bill that would let current PM rule by decree indefinitely in order to combat the coronavirus crisis. It was criticized by many human rights watchdogs because it gives him extra powers such as the suspension of parliament, severe punishments for journalists if the government believes their coronavirus reporting is not accurate, and heavier penalties for violating quarantine regulations.

Israel - Parliament approved electronic tracking of coronavirus patients by the Israeli Security Agency through national ID #s and phone #s. At first this was approved with no requirement of parliamentary oversight. Later it was revised to mandate it receive regular reports on how the information gathered had been used.

Mexico - Even organized crime organizations are taking advantage of the situation to boost their positions and public image. One of Mexico's most powerful orgs - Cartel Jalisco Nueva GeneraciĆ³n - was seen handing out food and supplies to the poor over the last few weeks with boxes stamped with their logos.

I also thought it was interesting that the US has also done this before. One could argue that the Patriot Act following 9/11 was an example of the government tightening power over citizens following a crisis.

I'm curious to see how things will look after the crisis. I wonder if the examples of leaders tightening their grip on power will hold, increase, or decrease. If I had to guess, I think it will only increase.

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