Subsidizing Death by Drink

US
(Kamionsky/iStock/Getty Images)
Closing bars and restaurants and pandemic ‘stimulus’ fueled excessive drinking at home.




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W
e can add a new, fatal wave of alcoholism to the unintended consequences of pandemic policy in the United States. Covid policies reduced the financial cost of excessive drinking and flooded families with extra cash.

Although employment fell during the pandemic and remained low, personal incomes surged during the first year and a half, far surpassing the historical records that were set during economic expansions. This economic oddity is largely due to unemployment benefits and three rounds of stimulus checks, which averaged about $30 per day per household above pre-pandemic levels. Although not reflected in the personal-income accounting, the rent-moratorium policy

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