Why didn't the capitalist unions summon heads of state to their meetings, to ban confinement?
Why, if unsuccessful, did they not use their relations within the state apparatus to make lockdown impossible?
Why, after all, did they not boycott government bonds, in order to threaten bankruptcy if it did not comply?
None of this happened.
In France, only 2.5% of patients who died from covid-19 had no known comorbidities and were under 65 years of age.
In other words, covid-19 kills the old and the sick people, and is a blessing for social security funds.
Conversely, the Hong Kong flu killed 31,226 people in France in two months, for 50.8 million inhabitants, an epidemic that has gone completely unnoticed.
It seems that society has grown more and more nervous about epidemics, until now it is completely hysterical.
But how do you explain the state's panic reaction?
Here are some hypotheses that might be worth discussing.
The first point of my reasoning is that as society becomes more complex and contradictory, it substitutes for the conscious will, uncontrollable automatisms. (The second is that a small section of the bourgeoisie, the pharmaceutical industries, might have staged a coup against the rest of the bourgeoisie)
Take the example of government bonds. Banks cannot simply boycott these products to put pressure on the state, because they are bound to their customers by contracts, for example life insurance, which stipulate to buy bonds as assets deemed reliable. The actual operators of these purchases are not even the actual buyers, but intermediaries, and the buyers do not know what they are buying as bonds are embedded in complex securitized products. In addition, banks are bound to the state by a host of equally complex rules, as tax advantages for example. Thus, bond buying operations take place because of an automatic, contractual and regulatory sequence that essentially escapes the conscious will, and which is oriented, roughly, towards the stability of the system.
But there is no flexibility. At no time can a group of capitalists make the strategic decision to change the direction of the state, as a general would with well-disciplined troops.
I admit that this is contradictory with other historical observations, when the bourgeoisie was able to organize itself through institutions like the IMF or the ECB to impose on states radical changes in their functioning, precisely by means of debt.
It thus seems that the bourgeoisie is caught between two poles, one being the conscious control of society, the other being blind automatic mechanisms. I have the impression that the bourgeoisie is manipulating an enormous machine whose complexity exceeds it, with enormous inertia, and that, in certain cases she manages to steer it, but in other cases, cogs start to jump, the machine jams and threatens to explode.
Because, basically, the system is contradictory. I can cite some of contradictions at the root of the failure, but without a comprehensive and detailed view, it is difficult to explain why, at such time and under such circumstances, the state has gone into a spin.
In summary, I believe that society is more complex and more contradictory than we usually imagine. The bourgeoisie is a class which opposes itself not only by nation, but also within a nation. One section of the bourgeoisie may dominate the whole bourgeoisie, and the rest of the bourgeoisie may find itself unable to defend itself due to its own automatisms and lack of state strategy.
I think it is reasonable to think that a very small part of the bourgeoisie, mainly the pharmaceutical industry, has taken the state power to the detriment of other sections of the bourgeoisie, as military-industrial complex take the state power during the wars, and that, in favor of a very small minority of capitalists, all capitalists will assume significant losses.
Can we consider, through the unelected "scientific councils" rotted with conflicts of interest, that the pharmaceutical industry has carried out a real coup, and is currently leading the political life of the majority of states?
I submit these hypotheses for discussion knowing that it is possible that new arguments could refute or modify them.