-- As for the big epidemiological "WE", I keep hoping, but I have a
hard time imagining a scenario where R₀ goes below unity before
virtually the entire herd is infected.
There I think you are quite seriously mistaken. I can and will elaborate when I have more time hopefully later this evening, but based on some good and simple math, I believe the U.S. (read largely, “New York”) still has a chance to bring it in at 30,000 to 40,000 deaths. If we do, it will be largely thanks to Andrew Cuomo, but you know who will claim and get the credit from a math illiterate America.
My most detailed model deals with California and it predicts something between 1500 and 2500 deaths in the Golden State. Thank you Governor Newsom.