Feel free to imagine any question. My question is, WTF?
I came across a fantastic essay the other day, a long one, and I was compelled to tweet:
No. Never in my 59 years have I read such a complete and comprehensive masterpiece. It’s quite long and ought not be one word shorter.
I’m referring to a piece in the journal, The American Mind, a publication of The Claremont Institute — Recovering The American Idea. The essay: The COVID Coup — And how to unlock ourselves. It’s by Angelo Codevilla.
Angelo M. Codevilla (born May 25, 1943) is an Italian-US professor emeritus of international relations at what is now the Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University. He served as a U.S. Navy officer, a foreign service officer, and professional staff member of the Select Committee on Intelligence of the United States Senate. Codevilla’s books and articles range from French and Italian politics to the thoughts of Machiavelli and Montesquieu to arms control, war, the technology of ballistic missile defenses, and a broad range of international topics. Articles by Codevilla have appeared in Commentary, Foreign Affairs, National Review, and The New Republic. His op-eds have appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and The Washington Post. He has also been published in Political Science Reviewer, Intercollegiate Review, Politica.https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Angelo_Codevilla
The essay covers much ground, but does not so much debate the science as it does indict America in general and some elements of American society in its wholly un-American response to a viral scare; and yea, that’s a double entendre.
Panicked by fears manufactured by the ruling class, the American people assented to being put essentially under house arrest until further notice, effectively suspending the habits, preferences, and liberties that had defined our way of life. Most Americans have suffered economic damage. Many who do not enjoy protected status have had careers ended and been reduced to penury. Social strains and suicides multiplied. Forcibly deferring all manner of medical care is sure to impose needless suffering and death. In sum, the lockdowns’ medical and economic dysfunctions make for multiples of the deaths and miseries of the COVID-19 virus itself.
Bad judgments and usurpations—the scam, not the germs—define this disaster’s dimensions. The COVID-19’s devastating effect on the U.S. body politic is analogous to what diseases do to persons whom age (senectus ipsa est morbus) and various debilities and corruptions had already placed on death’s slippery slope.
Outside of the few who have gained (and are still gaining) power and wealth from the panic, Americans are asking what it will take to end this outrage—not to modify it with any “new normal” decided by who knows whom, on who knows what authority. Since no one in authority is leading those who want to end it, Americans also wonder who may lead that cause. What follows suggests answers.
What history will record as the great COVID scam of 2020 is based on 1) a set of untruths and baseless assertions—often outright lies—about the novel coronavirus and its effects; 2) the production and maintenance of physical fear through a near-monopoly of communications to forestall challenges to the U.S.. ruling class, led by the Democratic Party, 3) defaulted opposition on the part of most Republicans, thus confirming their status as the ruling class’s junior partner. No default has been greater than that of America’s Christian churches—supposedly society’s guardians of truth.
That’s the intro in full. From there, its sections are: Truth, Falsehood, Politics, Intersectionality, Regime of Fear, Power, Default and Consequences, Who Will Lead Us, Truth Commission, Exemplary Leadership, and Perspective. Whew!
I wanted to focus on one aspect because it’s the first time I’ve seen this in any of the many articles that have passed before me. From the section Default and Consequences.
Fairness requires noting that, regardless of whatever America’s ruling Left has done, whatever its hopes, plans, or coordination, what actually happened to the United States of America consequent to COVID could not have happened had President Donald Trump, much of the Republican Party, and America’s religious establishment not concurred in its happening.
This is another way of saying that the ruling class rules by size and seduction, as well as by intimidation. It did not rush into imposing the shutdowns, or even into making too big a deal of COVID. Its parts and personages did not fully commit themselves until after they had convinced president Trump to give them the preclusion of opposition without which inflicting so much pain on so many would have exposed them to official and popular retribution.
And here’s the big punchline. Let me preface it by saying that I am not a believer in things religious in literal terms. That is, I do not believe in some physical of spiritual being outside of our own consciousness. God, heaven, hell…all those sorts of things are what humans make of them individually, meditatively, socially, and culturally. I also believe that attempting to ascribe literal status is to weaken the potential power of the ideas and ideals.
The biggest and most significant default however, has been that of America’s Christian churches—all of them—from their hierarchs to their priests, pastors, and ministers. Their complaisance with the lockdowns set aside a truth far more important to human dignity than anything having to do with any physical ailment—the one truth that puts all human power in proper perspective, the truth on which our civilization itself rests: that no human power can manufacture true and false, right and wrong, any more than we can make ourselves, and that, therefore, we are obliged to “render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and unto God the things that are God’s.”
Jewish congregations have been similarly craven.
The churches’ agreement to suspend public worship and the distribution of sacraments also contradicted their duty. Until 2020, Christian clergy felt obliged not just to offer public worship to whomever, but also to search out the sick, to offer sacraments to the dying, especially in places where victims of plagues lay between life and death—regardless of consequences. Because surrendering to secular dictates concerning how congregants should behave, even in church cannot be justified in Christian terms it would not have crossed previous generations of churchmen’s minds.
Had this generation of church leaders simply practiced their faith, even by merely keeping silent about the ruling class’s claims about the COVID-19 rather than ignorantly, submissively endorsing them, they would have preserved their intellectual and moral credit to help the general population to deal with the growing realization that they had been duped. Instead, they chose to be complicit with tinpot Caesars. Hence, as Americans face the bitter fact that we have been hurt worse than for nought, the churches have largely disqualified themselves as arbiters of truth.
Truth and clarity about what history will record as the 2020 COVID coup is the necessary condition for the American people to overcome its effects. Overcoming those effects must begin with discrediting those pretenses and the reputations of those who made them.
To put it in my terms, the manipulation of public fear over this viral scare (double entendre), made possible only by the global advent of internet access, ubiquitous “smart” phones, and obsessive social media, has, in the case of the religious, literally scared the Christ out of them!
And then there’s TV…
…Hey, very soon I’m going to be blogging, in part, about how I’ve easily lost over 4 kilograms the last couple of months here in rural Thailand. You can get a jump start by checking out The Energy Blueprint.
But, I’ll give you a hint: I eat Thai food, except when I make my occasional dish my loved Thai family and their friends say “very good” to, but don’t eat once tasted (that’s not to say they are taste wizards; not, but I ought not digress). The only fast food here in deep rural within hundreds of miles is a few KFC (and they fry in palm oil, not industrial machinery oil). Here’s my rule of thumb: half the rice, twice the protein.
Again: The Energy Blueprint.