Archives for category: A Journal of a Plague Year
The Thing that Biden wouldn’t say is, of course . . . well, I will leave that thought to a podcast. (And yes, more are coming.)

So, everyone acknowledges how weird 2020 has been. But too rarely do we recognize how well prepared we have been for the totalitarianism now developing. Our progressive servility has been managed, taught, bought and paid for (though the “paid for” includes over $27 trillion in debt, so I’m using this term loosely). It is a multi-pronged advance, of course, and it would be tedious to list at this point the major wings of our enslavement. But what Herbert Spencer called “The Coming Slavery” in 1884 is what we are seeing at the end of 2020.

Though in some sense “shocking,” it is not as if all my life I have not believed this was coming. I believed it when I ate up evangelical Christian eschatology as a young teen; I grokked it when I read Aldous Huxley and Yevgeny Zamyatin as an older teen. I began to understand its methods when I learned the meaning of words like “Orwellian” and “fascist” and “communist,” and especially as I read the history of the rise of the American military-industrial complex. Economics proved helpful, too, as did social psychology and . . . science fiction.

Indeed, that latter should have prepared us all what we are about to experience. I occasionally use an obscure word: stefnal. Well, that word sure will come in handy in 2021. The world is undergoing metamorphosis, and it is a very “science-fictional” one.

The Age of the AntiChrist™ is here, and tens and tens of millions have voted for it. Ah, the Savior State! But caution: Biden’s not the AntiChrist™, and neither, I suspect, is the loathsome Kamala Harris: the Savior State itself fits the role, with the figurehead being replaceable.

And the Last Men (of all “genders”) shall march to their demise taunting those recalcitrants who must be dragged to their doom their in chains — though the chains may very well be some form of psychotropic drug, a freeze ray, or a carefully constructed virus.

We were not convinced of the desirability of mask mandates, social distancing and lockdowns on the basis of science. We were convinced of the plausibility of a few conjectures. Then our manipulators (in media, politics, and social networks) took our sense of plausibility and got us to commit to the policies.

This amounted to the leveraging of a cognitive bias. And salesmen will recognize a sales technique right there. Add in fear, and voilà!

This carrot (plausibility) / stick (fear) scenario was then coupled with a few memes not scientific in nature but deliberately anti-scientific, in that they discouraged criticism.

And the extremity of the solutions — in effect ruining many people’s lives, blighting many more who are not technically ruined, leading to starvationin some parts (conveniently far away) — then makes for an anxiety that we assuage with self-righteousness. The “Karen” problem becomes a solution, at this point, for people, being sold a pogrom out of fear, then get to lash out at dissenters. This gives us a social mania that can easily spread by social mechanisms familiar to us all.

The pandemic panic was, in a word, a psy-op — a psychological operation more sophisticated than (but not entirely distinct from) your average advertising campaign — conducted precisely as leaders construct cults and whoop for war.

How psy-ops work is a fascinating thing. Note that one of my joke self-descriptors is “memetic engineer.” My interest in constructing what amounts to con jobs has been, largely, self-defense. Indeed, the tools of defense against such manipulations come in several flavors. Philosophy and science are two of those toolkits.

Most people know almost nothing about either. I wish I knew more. For maybe, had I seen the current psy-op forming in front of my eyes a few weeks earlier, I could have saved (who knows?) millions of lives.

In my own defense, a number of my academic heroes in philosophy and economics saw none of this, and, apparently, still don’t.

Humans are astoundingly easy to trick.

twv

Lee Waaks and I are joined by Rocco Lucente, who appeared on an episode a while back regarding the lockdowns, for a discussion of weight loss and taking charge of one’s life in the Age of COVID:

LocoFoco Netcast (Season II: Episode 2), December 16, 2020.

Frankly, I am tempted to be thankful that our technocratic fascisti among corporate journalists overplay their hands, since what they are dealing is decadence. Nicely, Jacob Sullum is a journalist working outside the bindings of the fasces:

Based on an analysis of news stories about COVID-19 that appeared from January 1 through July 31, Dartmouth economist Bruce Sacerdote and two other researchers found that 91 percent of the coverage by major U.S. media outlets was “negative in tone.” The rate was substantially lower in leading scientific journals (65 percent) and foreign news sources (54 percent).

Sacerdote and his co-authors, who report their results in a working paperrecently published by the National Bureau of Economic Research, found that stories about increases in newly identified infections far outnumbered stories about decreases, “even when caseloads were falling nationally.” Coverage of school reopenings likewise was “overwhelmingly negative, while the scientific literature tells a more optimistic story,” indicating that “schools have not become the super-spreaders many feared.”

This unrelenting, indiscriminate negativity fosters suspicion and resistance. Journalists and politicians who repeatedly cry wolf should not be surprised at the lack of cooperation when the beast actually appears.

Last May, The New York Times warned that lifting state lockdowns could raise nationwide COVID-19 deaths above 3,000 a day by June 1. The actual number was about 700.

Since mid-October, the seven-day average of daily deaths has more than tripled, exceeding the record set in April. But that reality still falls short of the false prophecy embraced by the Times.

Jacob Sullum, “Are Americans Insufficiently Alarmed by COVID-19?,” Reason, December 19, 2020.
From a Fb thread on a Reason article. Going “over the top” has its amusements.

Sullum concludes by opining for “the honesty that Americans deserve,” but I hesitate to endorse this. I wish better for Americans than what they deserve. It is quite possible that Americans do deserve what they are getting.

twv

Caution: wearing a black mask is like putting on devil’s horns and scrawling “666” on your forehead. Don’t do it, my friends.

Getting out of the coming crisis with your soul (conscience, if you will; your humanity, if you must) intact will be difficult. I do not know how deep into the warp and woof of our personhoods symbology runs, but my guess is that if you frequent the wearing of a black mask, and pretend that in doing this you are being both dignified and “moral,” you will end up complicit in genocide and glorying in horrors that will make Nazis look like pikers.

If you must mask, don’t replace your face with a representation of The Nothing, with a nihilistic Abyss, a black hole into Death.

Burn your black masks.

twv

I know dozens of people who are afraid to speak their minds on the Internet.

You should know why.

It is because of social threats. And only from one side.

Only one side regularly and routinely pressures employers (and business contractors) against hiring (or otherwise contracting with) people for holding the “wrong views.” Amusingly, that is the side that calls their victims “fascists.”

Less amusingly, that is the side politically allied with America’s Deep State, plutocrat class, neolib/neocon proponents of unlimited foreign warfare while bullying people into wearing masks and turning homes into prison encampments.

Their successes will soon be measured best in suicide stats. (In Japan this is already quite clear: suicides are way up.) Their ideology is one of servility and death, and death is indeed one of their goals: they support abortion with a monomaniacal fury, and will often wax poetic on the need to reduce the human population around the world (but starting with the “white race”).

Once upon a time, I showed a fair amount of intellectual respect for the theoreticians and writers on that side.

No more.

They are playing a game that I don’t see as ending in anything but mass violence or totalitarian tyranny. Opposing the latter, I am trying to emotionally prepare myself for the former.

It appears that many people hope that, maybe under a Biden administration, things’ll tone down, as we can settle into the corruption that the Biden family has practiced for such a long time, while intoning faux-earnest homilies about peace and virtue and that great mirage, “social justice.” I doubt it.

Violence is here, and will more likely increase. Defense against leftist street violence will continue to be played by the corporate media as offensive, and frustration over this will roil and overflow the pot, ending with mass slaughter as Americans have not witnessed since the Civil War.

What we are up against is technocratic fascism under cover of socialist-communist leftism. The leftists generally do not see how “far right” they have become, and the right does not see that it is being maneuvered, as if by an invisible hand, into leftist revolutionary strategy: gather the out-groups and attack the in-group hierarchy.

For the establishment in America is plutocratic/leftoid statism.

And it must indeed be overthrown.

twv

Tristan Justice (really?) writes in The Federalist that “Google’s YouTube Shuts Down Dilbert Creator Scott Adams.” It is only one video, but it is, as Adams has related, much like every other video he has created. But hey, it was suppressed so politely:

The level of ideological control, here, is rather astounding. The major social media platforms increasingly demand conformity to their politics. If you think this is a good thing, you should be wary of what you are turning into: a fascist. The hallmark of fascism is ideological control and a one-party state. Technocratic fascism might best name this new version.

The political party being defended by such corporate discrimination, is, as I have been saying, the Democratic Party. The excuse to suppress anti-Democratic opinion is “that it isn’t truthful.” But that is what tyrants always say. It is a rationale I regarded in my youth as conservative. Illiberal. Was I wrong?

“Deceptive practices” indeed!

The droll thing about the current political division is that each side sees the other side as “fascist.” And both make at least half-plausible cases. Yet only one side is attacking their opponents’ non-subsidized ability to speak and publicize information, argument, and speculation. So one side, the Democrats, is the obviously more fascist.

Scott Adams is a very bright observer of popular rhetoric. His popularity as a podcaster derives from his ability to explain the rhetorical skills of Donald Trump. And Adams has expanded on this to explain the memetic forces at play in the wider world of our current political contests. I probably catch one of his episodes every other week, but recognize his valuable contributions. He is not always right, but daily he offers insights of genius. To suppress such a voice in politics is almost unthinkable to me. If you think he is wrong, argue against him.

If you think he should be suppressed for the reasons lamely given by Google?

Well, politeness suggests that I refrain from saying what I think of you.

twv

<conjecture>

Recent events have been orchestrated by the Deep State to see how much/little blowback there would be from revelations of an astounding nature.

The revelations of past, recent and ongoing schemes have ratcheted up the level of enormity perpetrated by current officeholders.

  1. The AATIP revelations, where the government admitted that UFOs were real, but pretended not to know what they were, despite having investigated them for decades. Americans’ response? Ho-hum. The biggest revelation in world history and Americans yawn. Or snicker.
  2. China builds a bioweapon and releases it — with some U.S. Government funding. Result? Americans eagerly accept and support outrageous and totalitarian commands from politicians who have lied and changed stories and switched rationales multiple times, and Americans do not even think about the meaning of a likely major attack on the world and their own country by one foreign government … or the even more ominous possibility that elements of their own government (like the inexplicably popular Herr Doktor Fauci) conspired with said malefactor. What the Deep State then learned is that they could get away with the next step,
  3. a stolen election, ongoing, and then
  4. the next big event, which Bill Gates has already named. Yes, he did. Do you remember what he said the next hit was going to be? A massive failure of the Internet, or was it the whole infrastructure of the electric grid?

With step 4 I think the revolution will be complete. Millions of Americans will have died, and with the Manchurian candidate in the White House, the security of China and the Deep State will be complete. And a totalitarian superstate firmly in place over a reduced (in every sense of the word) population.

The thing is, I am not saying we do not deserve this. If your reaction to revelation #1 was “meh” or disbelief, or to just let the U.S. Government get away with its past psy-ops and lies and crimes (including murder) to keep a huge secret, then your reaction to #4 should, probably, be meekly to die, accepting your fate as unworthy to live.

</conjecture>

Have we not long known the bedrock truth, expressed by the now despised Thomas Jefferson, a man smarter and wiser than you or me? “Indeed I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just: that his justice cannot sleep for ever: that considering numbers, nature and natural means only, a revolution of the wheel of fortune, an exchange of situation, is among possible events: that it may become probable by supernatural interference! The Almighty has no attribute which can take side with us in such a contest.”

States without lockdown orders, or mask mandates, are not doing spectacularly worse than those with them. Indeed, it ranges from “better” to a wash.

Which makes the policies inexcusable.

So why are these edicts being promoted and followed?

For the same reason politicians send us to war and we go. For the same reason there is war fervor and excitement. For the same reason crowds shout in triumph upon the death of millions elsewhere.

The State with its claim of sovereign authority tempts everyone, and it encourages us to be reckless, bloodthirsty, moralistic, self-righteous, and worse . . . out of fear, first, and some imagined advantage, second.

This similarity between war and the lockdown orders is fairly clear, is it not?

The “moral equivalent of war” is immoral, and we, like sheep, almost always go astray to the bad shepherd that is the State.

The State’s a mind-trap. It messes with your heads. It takes your fear and makes you do crazy things, like think prohibiting people from engaging in commerce and normal human interaction because some even peaceful interactions play against what is said to be the general welfare. But obviously, in the case of the threats that start most wars and the menace that is this pandemic, the “cures” are worse than the disease — in part because our benighted species has been infected by a far worse virus than SARS-CoV-2: that worse infection is statism. Political messianism, in other words.

Thinking that salvation comes from authoritarian force.

It is amusing how rarely anyone brings up the First Amendment; the freedom to peaceably assemble, one of would have thought, was something to be protected, not squelched. But oh, how politicians lust to squelch freedom in any form! It’s in their memes and maybe their genes.

And give them an excuse . . . well, don’t.

The proper response to a pandemic is caution, courage, curiosity and conscientiousness — all within the field of persuasion and property rights. Not state edict.

And by the way, “edicts” are not laws, in some jurisprudential theory, and the distinction is understandable. I won’t go to one local store that put up a sign mandating masks because of “Inslee Law.” Inslee’s our idiot governor. He cannot make law. Ascribing law to him is a kind of heresy to republicanism. I’d rather play anarch than subservient swine to Inslee’s edicts.

But maybe we can avoid accelerating our grimace. When I hear a person chide Trump and Trumpians for breaching the “rule of law” but in the next breath insist upon the need for lockdowns, I do indeed laugh.

Yet, should jackbooted thugs with badges come to take me off to the gulags my leftist friends seem itching to create in their drooled-about “Truth and Reconciliation” re-education camps, from my mouth may come bitter, not mirthful, laughter.

But of course the peace-lovers will no doubt gun me down instead. You know, “for the public good.”

Which they cannot explain on rational grounds. For this epidemic does not justify tyrannical proclamations and a general totalitarian response. Not even plausibly.

But add in fear and subtract sound judgment, and of course: anything goes.

As long as it is statist. That parasite meme is firmly running people’s brains now.

twv

Hillary Clinton; Donald Trump; Joe Biden; Kamala Harris — there is a sort of progression here, a ratcheting up of insanity.

Unaccounted trillions of spending and receipts in the Pentagon and HUD; remorseless deficit spending and ballooning-in-the-trillions debt; Federal Reserve policies that would make even a Rothschild blush; ignorance of ecological crisis coupled with a fixation on a non-crisis (global warming) and now the coronavirus panics — what is becoming clear is the enormity of public idiocy in our tolerance for rising levels of folly.

Never-ending wars that make no sense but do make vast graveyards; surveillance that becomes increasingly accomplished and omnipresent; and disclosures of ominous secrets that accumulate yet make hardly a ripple in the public mind — what are we supposed to believe?

We should wonder whether we are exhibiting some sort of collective death wish.

What’s certain is that we ramp up the bizarrerie year by year.
And these Months of Q (as I call this period of post-election/pre-installation of a president) are quite enjoyable to watch.

Pop up the popcorn, heat the butter, and enjoy the show.

And if this conclusion seems tacked-on, a hollow ping of a cheery note? Sure. But Trump’s basic challenge against the vote counts from Election Day is such a major blast of discord — and his lawyer Sydney Powell’s charge of massive voter fraud via corrupt electronic voting system democracy’s biggest j’accuse ever — that all the Q Anon talk that roiled on the back burner now bubbles over. Q prophecies always seemed preposterous. But not much more than Powell’s. They are of a piece. And they will soon reach a falsifiability test.

For guidance, soon, we may wish to consult When Prophecy Fails — or That Hideous Strength.