One of the many problems encountered by self-proclaimed "intellectuals" is self-referentialism. Instead of looking at phenomena and drawing conclusions based on evidence, intellectuals tend to force-fit phenomena into their pet constructs. When we look at our response to covid-19 a few things are blindingly clear:

One: the mass media created yet another context-free sensation in order to generate revenues, as per their standard model of reportage

Two: as always, people believed what they were told and began to panic wildly because we live in a world of thought-free always-on screen-gawping reactions

Three: politicians desperately sought to respond to the mass hysteria in order to present the illusion of "being in control" and thus avoid losing votes, because citizens were panicking and demanding to be “saved”

Four: no one had any kind of plan at all, hence the total lack of coherence and coordination everywhere

Five: people don't "place life above everything else" because if they did we wouldn't have millions dying of obesity-related diseases and many more millions dying of smoking-related diseases

Six: the data makes it clear that hardly anyone dies of covid-19 (even the UK, one of the hardest-hit nations, has experienced a per capita mortality rate of 0.067%, which is less than a statistical rounding error) but that’s excluded from the narrative because it’s not sensationalist enough to generate revenues

Seven: no one seems capable of even the remotest degree of rationality and thus over-reaction, which crippled the world and pushed 1.5 billion people into chronic financial insecurity, became the norm

Eight: no one has the capacity to assess relative risk because our tiny ape-brains aren't evolved to perform this cognitive task. So we panic over the trivial and ignore the truly important

Nine: we've learned nothing from covid-19 and so we'll be repeating this entire scenario again far sooner than most people imagine

At no point in any real-world analysis is there any evidence whatsoever for a grand political conspiracy. On the contrary, incompetence, panic, and sheer stupidity are the hallmarks of our global reaction to what is, by any rational assessment, a non-event. Remember: six million people die every month in the normal run of life; that means that the total covid-19 death rate to date has been around 1% of total worldwide deaths. So we wrecked the world and destroyed tens of millions of lives for... around 1% of daily deaths. Not really smart, and no evidence whatsoever for a global political conspiracy. It is, however, conclusive evidence of our cognitive incapacity as a species.

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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.

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