But wiggin has been wrong in his predictions. Just as others in the financial world relying on "conventional wisdom" were quite wrong. This wasn't supposed to be a big deal, it was just a temporary blip, markets wouldn't be effected because banks were well capitalized and money/credit was still flowing etc, but now it's a big fucking global mess.

IMO it's a mistake to focus on deaths, or compare it to a 1918 pandemic. That's apples to oranges. The real problem is that no healthcare system can deal with a *novel* virus in the era of modern medicine, AND that healthcare is a leading for-profit industry led by the US.

Imagine what the world would look like if Salk had trademarked and monetized the Polio vaccine, with help from Big Pharma, benefiting investors and shareholders. Be careful what you take for granted....