Hoarding toilet paper and water because of COVID-19 smacks of mental illness say experts.

Leading mental heath experts have expressed concern over the knee-jerk reactions by liberal Democrats over the coronavirus.
Overreacting to a random virus by stockpiling non-critical items can actually lower resistance to the virus, causing illness.
Stay home, get drunk, get laid and watch TV was their advice.
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On Friday, March 13, 2020 at 6:05:17 PM UTC-5, Circus Party wrote:

The hoarding is very strange. Do these people think that TP is made in China or Italy? Are they planning to hide in their basements for several years?
Some of the hoarding was and is done by profiteers who expected to make huge profits.
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On 3/19/2020 8:07 AM, Davej wrote:

The hoarding is not necessarily irrational. Suppose you've heard that one possible symptom of COVID-19 is severe diarrhea. You're also aware that people have been buying up all the toilet paper, and stores usually have none on the shelves. You're one of the early arrivals at a store, and lo and behold, they have some toilet paper in stock. What do you do?
What you do is buy much more than you ordinarily would, because you may be holed up at home for a while, and the next time you get to the store, more likely than not there won't be any available.
This is a perfect example of what Garrett Hardin called "the tragedy of the commons," and what Ronald Coase more formally identified as "the problem of the social cost." In the tragedy of the commons, the commons refers to unowned grazing land on which anyone may graze his sheep or cattle. No one has any incentive to limit the size of his herd or flock, so the land is quickly overgrazed and becomes worthless for grazing. Why? Because if you reduce the size of your herd or flock in order to leave more pasturage for the future, it won't be there - the livestock of all the others will eat it. This is what economists call an externality. If you increase your herd or flock, you internalize the extra revenue, but the cost of your larger herd or flock is partially incurred by others.
The solution to the tragedy of the commons is to privatize the land. The landowner now has an incentive to limit his own herd size if he has livestock, or to charge enough money to people who buy grazing rights from him so that they limit their herd sizes.
The similar solution to the shortages of toilet paper or anything else is for merchants to jack the price way up - what people stupidly call "price gouging." If that 30-roll package of toilet paper at Costco now costs you $300, you're probably only going to buy one. That means there will be some left over for other people to buy.
There's one more way to look at this, and that comes from Heller's "Catch-22." There is a scene in the book in which Yossarian's naive and hopelessly idealistic pal, Clevinger, chastises Yossarian for being self-interested. Yossarian had already said, "From now on, I'm thinking only of myself." Clevinger, trying to sound superior, says, "But Yossarian - what if everyone felt that way." Not missing a beat, Yossarian replies, "Then I'd be a damned fool to fell any other way, wouldn't I?"

--
If you're not reading the New York Times, you're not following the news

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On Thursday, March 19, 2020 at 3:10:02 PM UTC-5, Rudy Canoza wrote:

Why? Ordinary paper products are manufactured right here in the USA.
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I'm waiting for the mentally ill Democrat mass shootings over toilet paper lines at Costco or Sams Club.
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On Friday, March 20, 2020 at 5:05:04 AM UTC-5, Eli wrote:

I'm waiting for the mentally ill Republican mass shootings over the closing of their local gyms.
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