People still seem unwilling to face just how dire this situation is. Infection rates in a situation where serious measures are not taken are running at perhaps eight days to multiply numbers by ten. Lombardy is running out of coffins. Its doctors are showing PTSD symptoms. The mortality rate is effectively 10% thanks to a completely overrun medical system.

Whatever your mental model is for how bad this is, forget it. It's far, far worse. See my mention of Lombardy above? They had their first coronavirus positive *less than a month ago*. There is a reason governments are mobilising on this scale; it's because left to its own devices, this will kill more people than the world wars, and it will do it in weeks.

If your state has a population of ten million, and isn't taking serious measures, here's a fairly likely trajectory.

Today: the first case in your state.

Eight days from now: the tenth case in your state.

Sixteen days from now: the hundredth case in your state, and the first few deaths.

Twenty-four days from now: deaths are now beginning to add up.

Thirty-two days from now: deaths at this point are running at close to one in ten, as your medical system becomes completely overrun.

Forty days from now, assuming still no measures being taken: about a hundred thousand cases by now, and almost ten thousand deaths. There is a shortage of coffins. Medical personnel are showing PTSD symptoms; some are dying. Decisions are regularly being made to leave patients to die because there are not enough ventilators.

Forty-eight days from now: close to a million infected. Almost one percent of the population has died of coronavirus in less than seven weeks. The medical system is effectively gone at this point. Corpses are being piled up in warehouses because there's no room left.

Fifty-six days from now: at this point, the infection rate is levelling off as 90% or so of the population has contracted coronavirus. There are thousands upon thousands of deaths on a daily basis. The piles of corpses lead to a secondary outbreak of bacterial and parasitical illnesses, a considerable number of which will end up killing their hosts as a result of an already weakened immune system. Of the ten million people in your state, close to a million are dead or dying. The hospital system will take years to recover, and the state faces a desperate shortage of doctors and nurses.

If this is not prevented, it will be the worst loss of life in Europe and America in centuries.

At this point, eight weeks have passed. In a little under two months, your state has lost almost 10% of its population, its support and safety structures have been utterly ruined, the economy is wrecked completely, and (assuming you survive) you'll be mourning your friends and family for years to come.