Is Anybody Out There?
Lately I’ve been wondering if there’s any point documenting unconventional thoughts when there may be almost no-one left to read them with any measure of comprehension. I’ve been an outsider all my life but rarely have I felt it so keenly as over the last few months, and most especially now.
Until the middle of September my experience of our current pandemic of mindless hysteria was limited. Switzerland largely avoided being influenced by the absurd sensationalism that infected the rest of the world. Switzerland, along with the Netherlands, Sweden, Estonia, and Iceland, mostly avoided the media-driven abdication of reason that has shamed the human race around the world.
But for the last few weeks I’ve been in the UK, which succumbed without a fight to the same reason-free panic that is now the defining characteristic of our species. And it’s profoundly depressing.
While I can understand ordinary people believing the nonsense they are bombarded with and imagining that the relative non-threat of SARS-CoV2 is actually something we need to pay attention to, I find it impossible to understand the complete abdication of anything remotely approaching coherent thought.
It is, just, comprehensible that ordinary people never bother to acquaint themselves with readily available data that would show how absurd the global panic truly is. I can understand that almost nobody would think of searching out data and then being able to understand what it’s telling us. I can also understand that almost nobody has any concept of how scientific studies ought to be conducted, and how statistical analysis must be done in order to avoid misrepresenting outcomes. After all, who can be bothered to learn these things when it’s so much more important to keep up with the latest TV show and InstaSnap influencer?
I can understand ordinary people not making the connection between claims that facemasks and social distancing will “save lives” while simultaneously being told that despite all the facemasks we’re going to have to return to lockdown because the virus is spreading (so clearly facemasks don’t work).
After all, we humans never evolved the capacity for consistency-checking because there was never any selection pressure to push us to develop this capability. The lack of any capacity for consistency-checking is the reason ordinary people believe in magic pixies, astrology, detox foot baths, and all manner of other nonsense.
I understand ordinary people not realizing they’ve experienced bait-and-switch. Now that doctors have stopped killing 80% of patients by thrusting them into induced coma and ventilating them, and now that the most elderly and most at risk have already died, the infection rate and the subsequent mortality rate have become largely decoupled. This is why the “news” no longer reports rising death rates but instead focuses entirely on infection rates. Ordinary people can’t be bothered to look at the ample data that shows how today infection rate is actually a good thing (more and more people have antibodies, thus creating herd immunity, thus ultimately bringing the pandemic to a halt) because now so few people are dying.
I understand how ordinary people don’t know the WHO has published data from countries that have accomplished near-100% testing that shows more than ninety percent of those infected experience no symptoms at all. Because the newspapers aren’t reporting this, and who can be bothered to look for information when there’s a new must-watch TV series for us to gawp at?
What I cannot understand is how people can fail to see absurdity when it is literally under their noses.
If you believe that covid-19 is genuinely a danger and you believe that facemasks serve some protective function, then… how can you believe that the moment you sit down at a restaurant table to consume food and a beverage, magically it’s now OK to remove that facemask? Do people think the SARS-CoV2 virus politely suspends its activities while one consumes one’s meal, and then resumes its dastardly work only after we’re all safely masked up again?
Surely even a very young and very stupid child would see the abject absurdity of such behaviors?
We humans are even more foolish than even the most cynical among us would have imagined a mere twelve months ago. All around the world people are superstitiously practicing the most absurd hygiene theater in the genuine belief that it will “save lives.” People peer fearfully at the world over the top of their facemasks, terrified that passers-by may kill them through the simply act of existing. All this merely because some brainless journalists have written sensationalist nonsense in the newspapers and read totally misleading words from teleprompters.
This is no different whatsoever from people believing in demonic possession and thinking that they can “save” themselves by muttering incantations to ward off evil. It is no different to believing in witches and witchcraft.
In short, for all our lovely modern toys that we constantly stroke and gawp at, we’re no better than the most ignorant and credulous medieval peasant. There is, inside the average human brain, no meaningful activity occurring.
People of a liberal persuasion appear to imagine it is their sacred duty to believe that SARS-CoV2 is an existential threat that will wipe out the human race unless we all prance around behind facemasks and wash our hands 4,278 time per day (for at least 20 seconds on each occasion, because 19.3 seconds wouldn’t be enough!).
Thanks to a totally irresponsible mass media entirely dependent upon generating endless eyeball-grabbing sensationalism, hundreds of millions of people are now living in fear. We know that when we’re fearful the hippocampus suppresses activity in the prefrontal cortex, and so we become essentially walking morons. But surely at some point even the most fearful person who gullibly believes everything they hear on the “news” must pause and wonder about the folly of it all?
Here in the UK there seem to be two attitudes that are most prevalent. The first is a perpetual fear in which everyone else is seen as a potential carrier of the plague, a threat to one’s very life. The second is a more prosaic attitude of “this is all a load of bollocks” yet nevertheless acquiescence is required lest one be subject to various fines imposed by a government that can’t even remember it’s own chaotic tangle of pointless and self-harming rules. Whereas in the sanity of Switzerland only a tiny percentage of people were hypnotized by irresponsible French media into wearing facemasks as they go about their daily business, here in the UK an astonishing 35% of people seem to imagine their talismanic facemasks are essential for the preservation of life. We are not far from mob hysteria under such circumstances.
Every day, more people become more afraid, simply in order that the likes of Rupert Murdoch can become even more wealthy than they already are.
This does not seem to be a very sensible way in which to organize things.
Instead of gullibly swallowing whatever the media happens to pretend is “news” we ought to be looking at the facts.
So what are the facts? To date around one million people have died while infected with covid-19. A great many were killed early on by doctors pushing them into induced coma and shoving them onto ventilators. This is now understood to have killed between 70% and 80% of patients, thus massively inflating the initial death toll and leading people to imagine SARS-CoV2 was more of a problem than it really was.
But even if we take the one million number at face value, what does this tell us? There are 7,800,000,000 people alive on Earth right now. One million deaths is a per-capita mortality rate of 0.0128%. This is less than a statistical rounding error.
Yes, all deaths are sad. But SARS-CoV2 emerged in Wuhan in November 2019. Since then nearly sixty million people have died in the normal course of events, as they do every year. So even if every single covid-19 death was truly due to the virus, this means only 1.67% of all deaths have been due to the coronavirus. Meanwhile nearly thirteen million people have died as a result of making poor lifestyle choices (smoking, over-eating). If we were really concerned about saving lives, surely we’d put thirteen times as much effort into preventing such deaths as into preventing the very old and the very sick from succumbing to SARS-CoV2?
The difference, of course, is that the mass media can’t sensationalize smoking and obesity because we’re habituated to these things. Indeed, 86% of US citizens are now fat, with an astonishing 40% being obese. No government is going to tell such a huge number of voters that they’re being irresponsible and creating unaffordable social costs. Politicians are in the business of wooing voters, not alienating them.
If we cared about preserving life at any cost, we wouldn’t have taken actions that have thrown tens of millions into acute financial distress and nearly two hundred and fifty million people into starvation and risk of dying from preventable diseases that now have become fatal because we suspended foo aid and stopped critical vaccination programs. Saving a few hundred thousand pampered westerners by killing quarter of a billion dark-skinned impoverished people seems like an incredibly irresponsible, amoral, and stupid thing to do. Just because the western media is studiously avoiding covering this humanitarian crisis doesn’t mean it’s not happening. And we caused it.
So being perpetually fearful and wearing facemasks as magical totems against infection and being terrified to touch anything isn’t about “saving” lives. It’s about mindlessness.
And in a world of mindlessness, to whom does one write when one opts not for nonsense or politically-driven drivel, but instead to look calmly at the facts and draw coherent rational conclusions from them?
To whom does one address one’s words when seemingly 99% of humanity has swallowed mental garbage? When every brain is shut down by a constant barrage of fear-inducing sensationalism, who is left to read and consider that perhaps all of this is nothing more than the age-old hysteria of crowds now amped up on a global scale thanks to our clever modern technologies?
For whom does one write, when no one wishes to read except to reaffirm what they already believe?
What use are words in the face of mob mentality?
This is how pogroms begin. Collective delusional madness is not conducive to maintaining the thin veneer upon which we all depend.
This is how civilizations end.