As we're a group species with nearly zero capacity for assessing large datasets and attempting to reason from them, we fall back - as the article correctly states - on simply doing what we're told and what we see those around us doing. For most of our evolutionary history this was a "good enough" approach for the average ape-person, which is why we're still here. Unfortunately today's world, created accidentally through the inventions of a tiny number of truly clever people, has left us high and dry. Our hardwired behaviors are totally out of synch with the complexity of the world in which we live. SARS-CoV2 has shown how catastrophic that can be.

Some facts, based on WHO data: 99.9% of people have nothing to fear from covid-19. Even the very worst-hit nations have seen a per capita mortality rate well under one-tenth of one percent, and this has nothing to do with supposedly life-saving lockdowns because the same statistic is true for non-lockdown nations like Sweden, the Netherlands, and Switzerland. Conversely, as the WHO points out, 250 million will die because of our rush to lockdown. In other words, many times more will die because of our stupidity than would ever have died even under the very worst wild projections from covid-19.

But we're hardwired to panic, to believe what we're told, and nobody bothers to look at the real data and attempt to reason from it. If people could be bothered to read and assess the studies on which so much “advice” is based, they’d be shocked by how little validity this advice actually has. But it’s easier to gawp at Netflix and just believe whatever we’re told by someone on TV reading from an teleprompter.

Sadly, we will learn nothing from today's experience and our stupidity tomorrow will be even worse and even more catastrophically harmful.

Anyone who enjoys my articles here on Medium may be interested in my books Why Democracy Failed and The Praying Ape, both available from Amazon.