Conspiracy and coordination were important at the beginning, but national governments and their institutions rapidly assumed the initiative in all areas of pandemic policy.
"As for the conspirators: They are to be sought in the earliest months of 2020. China played a very important role here, through its influence within the WHO, and perhaps also via separate channels."
Yep. That's why it's so conspicuous that we still have nothing close to an official explanation of how China's containment measures came to be adopted as global policy. Still more conspicuous for the fact that no mainstream journalist has yet touched this question, which is by far the most important of the past three years. The longer the rat festers, the more it stinks.
"Arguing the conspiracy-or-emergence question with respect to pandemic policy is a little like weeding the garden. You are never quite done with it, and every few months you find you have something more to say." Indeed. I am and pretty much have always been the person who ascribes evil to the people who "control" the government. I wholeheartedly believe that power not only corrupts, but it (more importantly) attracts the corruptible. People who are, with apology for language choice, shitty in almost every way seek to enjoy the responsibility-free power that government positions afford. That personal belief aside, I think the description used so often by another substacker-extraordinaire, The Bad Cat, is apropos. Most of these decisions made by people like Hancock, Fauci, Johnson, Trump, Biden and the whole lot, represented "the low energy path" and so, dumb-assed bureaucrats, drunk on too much power, took them. Masks. Lockdowns. Mandated vaccination. That said and accepted, here's another uncomfortable truth. The response of the public at large--including acceptance of these nitwit solutions, up to still doing them--confirms what the dumb-assed bureaucrat's user manual suggested. Those bureaucrats are dumb, but the people they lead are, in far too high a proportion, just as damned dumb.
Eugyppius, we have an amazing exchange of opinions that will, hopefully, benefit our readers and will make life more interesting.
Thanks for writing a very thoughtful followup.
The history of the pandemic is being written (and rewritten) as we speak and we need to be dicscussing it further.
I hope that the Covid pandemic will be forever remembered as a caution against future abuses of power.
I agree completely there was no prolonged conspiracy (barely even an initial one). Of all the converging factions that landed on lockdown, I feel that big finance is often overlooked.
Post 2008 financial crash, the enormous financial engines of the west got hooked on disaster funding, and seek out opportunities to blackmail politicians into printing more free money for them.
Everyone at the time of the lockdowns thought they’d have to end to “save the economy”, not realising the day to day economic transactions you or I make had been completely decoupled from the closed loop of central bank->big finance->stock exchange.
Maybe when history looks back at this period, it’ll be the timely inflation that ultimately ended any ability for lockdowns and the like to continue.
It is a complete failure of the historical form of thought. We have already had a respiratory viral pandemic in 1918. We learned from that pandemic close confinement drove both the contagion and its severity. We had during the Spanish Influenza very effective therapies to reduce the pathogen load exposures: Fresh air and sunlight. Three years ago, we already knew respiratory viral pathogens are in fact, replicating toxins. We have known that for years, decades. We can effectively mitigate these types of viral contagion by reducing the pathogen load.
We already knew the base viral load. There are billions of viral particles in a typical ounce of seawater (30 grams), three billion on average to be more precise. Every cubic meter of air typically contains millions to billions of viral particles. The idea you could do anything with a mask except concentrate viral particles on its surface was well established through good old clinical trials, lot of them. This was all old, settled, science at the pandemic's beginning. It was easily available to anyone with google.
Eugyppius recently wrote about how academia these days suppresses discovery, especially experimental method discovery. Nothing could be truer. Establishment academia and establishment science have become, in fact, the forgetful enemies of truth. They can't remember the truth because they have abandoned the historical form of thought. They will have nothing to do with the remaining few souls who insist historical consciousness is the only doorway to truth we've been given. We have to face the facts - academia is the enemy. Their conspiracy is a refusal to remember what is true.
Well, Igor and Eugyppius, see what you've done? Now all I can hear is Faye Dunaway getting slapped as she screams "My sister! My daughter!" Gonna be playing in my head all day and the day is just starting.
His email came first of course, but I've read this which arrived just in time.
Now, I like both of you, and despite all the Disappointers who've fallen out of my regard, these past three years (earlier, really, since 2016 to be sure), I trust both of you too. And with no scientific background of my own I can only trust, not verify.
I think Igor gets a little wild-eyed and emotional at times, but what seem to me his undeniable good will and hunger for justice make me give him a little leeway for that.
So the steadiness of your hand, as I've expressed my admiration for several times in the course of our human existence already, is even more appreciated.
I remember how it surprised me, after discovering you and reading you steadily thereafter, to realize you're a young man and not an old one. This gives me hope, that common sense is still being bred in the species.
Academics always believe it is stupidity that leads to bad decision making - instead of immoral conduct by people lacking spiritual conviction. The Hebrew bible says again and again that those who violate the Ten Commandments and worship false idols will end up sacrificing children. It was that behavior - the corruption of these officials and their worship of false idols - that has lead to the COVID sacrifice of our world’s children. In addition, these people who work against religion and believe they are just “rational” and “secular” just embody another cult.
Eugyppius, you know...you gotta write that book. So much research over the years shouldn't go to waste and, selfishly, I like and share your non-agressively non-conspiratorial, non-biblethumping outlook. I think the idea that stupid people-with-power dabbled with Things Beyond Their Ken and got it horribly wrong is one that even moderate covidians could get behind, leading to a little bit less hostility between covidians and covid measure critics and skeptics.
I am really interested in the role social media/Silicon Valley played. Sure, they were to profit from lockdown policies. But do you think they very early realized this was the perfect opportunity to advance a more digital lifestyle and line their pockets in the process and began to actually push for lockdowns? Or do you think they got on the lockdown bandwagon later on because it was more convenient for them? Did they meet with government representatives early on and were made to mute criticism or did the gatekeepers in social media share policymakers' sensibilities?
Looking forward to that book of yours. :-)
It must be a conspiracy or a grand master plan, or the world doesn't make sense.
Children before puberty tend to think that everything that happens does so for a reason beyond mere causality; this is due to their neurological and psychological development.
With experience and knowledge and the brain maturing comes the subconscious realisation that most things happen through complex interaction and that there's often no other reason for something happening (to the individual in question) than random chance and probabilities.
This of couse is very bleak and uncomfortable, and also engenders a sense of alienation and detachment: we want to belong and we want to matter so we seek out patterns, circumstances and groups that makes us feel welcome and wanted and as having a purpose with life (which life doesn't have, it just is).
Which of course doesn't in any way mean there aren't co-ordination, plans and planning - there is, and must be for any society to exist. And any such co-ordination when institutionalised and made routine or even ritual is very easy to co-opt and utilise for more purposes than the original one.
In short, it's not either conspiracies or no conspiracies, just as it's not salt /or/ pepper -it's salt /and/ pepper.
But the world is more comforatble under control (false sense of such, i.e. a safety blanket) if a conspiracy can be said to exist which the individual in question then can use as an ad hoc and omniversal explanation for everything, rather than accepting their own insignificance and the (objectvely speaking) pointlessness of their existence.
I appreciate your level-headed thinking on this, Eugyppius. This is such a complicated thing, and while the conspiracy angle just helps explain it, the answer has to be more layered than that. The constant intellectual degradation of education and thus public service, and the relentless attack on Westen, liberty-minded ideologies, the weaponization of the white, liberal female, the general and historical belief in vaccines and our fear of even routine illnesses - it all worked in concert to create the hurricane. A group of conspirators can’t plan a giant scam and have everyone go along in lockstep...unless the conditions were right. And that was not necessarily in any one camp’s control. It’s still baffling to think how quickly people I used to admire abandoned their common sense. And the conspiracy alone doesn’t answer that to my satisfaction.
You're right of course. Dramatic seemingly conspiratorial events often come together as a result of the mundane opportunism of various groups with their own individual agenda.
I honestly think the popular image of a global elite who conspire to kill us all off to save the Earth is a kind of psychological attempt by people at externalizing their own environmental concerns. Whenever I see these theories emerge, I think to myself: "You haven't integrated your shadow."
It's similar to how the "elites" are always accused of "eugenics" by the conspiracy theorists. Anyone can figure out we don't want heroin addicted prostitutes to have 10 children that have to be raised by CPS, but we don't want to have someone forcibly dragged off the street to have her tubes tied either.
And so at some level we all want eugenics, but we also all don't want to be called nazi racists. So it's seductive to externalize this dark aspect of our personality, the shadow, projecting it onto an evil global elite, who are the antithesis in every way of our own imagined qualities.
That way we don't have to worry about the problem: It will be solved by the evil ruthless elite and even better, we don't have to feel guilty about the problem being solved, in fact we bravely if impotently tried standing up against these ruthless elites who solved the problem. You get to enjoy the best of both worlds.
And so whatever problem is real (global IQ is declining, the planet is overpopulated and rapidly warming up, etc) is ultimately addressed, but our own hands are washed free of blood.
It seems like most people, even on the right, have forgotten the initial response of the usual suspects to corona before the later flip to Covid-panic, so it's good to see that our host hasn't. At least in the US, the media narrative in Jan/Feb 2020 was that corona was a nothingburger compared to annual flu deaths, and that President Trump's attempts to close the borders were driven by pure racism. Democrats took selfies of themselves eating dinner in Chinatown and encouraged Americans to do the same. The CDC put out flyers recommending against the use of masks, and those who bought respirators were accused of hoarding and panic-mongering. Experts at the CDC and elsewhere said that a vaccine would be at least 18 months in the making, if it proved to be possible at all.
That changed in March, but it took a while for the full shift to pro-lockdowns and pro-masks to happen. The NCAA basketball tournament was cancelled on March 12, one of the first big events to be shut down. The president declared the "national emergency" the next day. Various stay-at-home orders and shutdowns came in the weeks after that. My state, which was one of the most insane, started its mask mandate on May 1.
So if I wanted to claim that the entire thing was planned--not in the sense of globalist disaster contingency plans opportunistically brought into use, but in the sense of a planned agenda followed step-by-step starting with the release of the virus--I would have to believe that all these governments and corporate partners and every media organ participated in a 2- to 3-month head-fake where they downplayed the virus, just so they could spend the next couple months backtracking and brainwashing the populace into forgetting all that and accepting the new narrative of panic. Why? No one would plan it that way because there'd be no reason to. You'd release the virus, let it spread a little, and then start spreading the panic and enacting your restrictions. There would be no reason to make the job more difficult by preaching the opposite narrative at first.
Maybe that's why everyone's forgotten those first months. Leftists had to forget because the new narrative couldn't allow for any doubts, and because the shift was so obviously politically motivated. But maybe right-wingers forgot because the idea of a well-planned conspiracy jerking us around is easier to take than the possibility that much of it took on a life of its own, driven by bureaucrats jumping on an opportunity to enhance their power without needing anyone to order them to do what they did.
I think it's both.
There are certainly global elitists who are crafting narratives and coordinating actions with political leaders around the globe under the guise of a utopian future ("save the planet!") -- and said leaders are enriching themselves by playing along.
But there are also local officials and media players who are out of their depth on things like pandemics (i.e. they are dumb). These people look to the national level political leaders -- and the scientific "experts" -- for guidance on making their decisions on what to say and what to do. Thus, they perpetrate the lies and bad actions concocted at a higher level.
As thoughtful people such as eugyppius, Igor, and others debate the truth of Planet Covid, sometimes coming to different factually supported and *seemingly* contradictory conclusions, I suggest everyone keep in mind the old story of the blind men and the elephant: each blind person touches a different part of the huge beast (trunk, flank, leg, ear, tusk, tail) and describes the whole animal as just being the part they felt. They’re all speaking truthfully and accurately, but still disagree, at least until their consciousnesses expand to appreciate the scale of what they are trying to understand.
I have my own nutty theories about it all I won’t go into now, but any person who wants to tackle the truth about covid writ large seriously needs to have some humility about the immense scale of the tusk … I mean, task.
‘... but national governments and their institutions rapidly assumed the initiative in all areas of pandemic policy.’
And the same for climate change? No global policy there.
I think the conspiracists forget how blatantly self-contradictory and obviously stoopid the pandemic policies were. Liquor stores are "essential" and must be kept open, but the DMV is non-essential and must close. We must close off the clothing section at Walmart with caution tape but leave the food section of the same store open, because potato chips are essential and shoes are not. You must mask entering the restaurant, but then take off the mask when you sit down, but then put it back on to go to the bathroom.
Even the goons at the WEF would come up with better plans were they behind it all, if for no other reason than to confuse the masses less. This was the work of dim-witted politicians desparately flying by the seat of their pants at all times.