Are Lockdown Zealots Incapable of Introspection?

Writing in The Atlantic on October 31, Brown University economist Emily Oster penned a pre-emptive plea for amnesty for Covid-policy hardliners. Why? Because they were all well-intentioned and their pronouncements rested on benign ignorance. 

Judging by the numerous responses in print and social media and online commentary, the viral article lit the fuse on widespread, simmering but still raw anger. To many it suggests the lockdown zealots are incapable of introspection, of accepting culpability. Instead, they just want to move on to the next excuse to unleash blanket authoritarian control all over again.

Jessica Hockett has coined the word “Osterism” to describe the attitude of forgive, forget and move on from earlier finger-wagging, abusive and vile taunts because we didn’t know but meant well. Abracadabra. Puff! it’s all gone. ‘Twas but a bad dream, time to wake up and get going for the day’s activities.

Sorry, but the whole Covid debacle needs to be turned instead into a parable with a moral for the ages, to show how easy it is for a civilized society to be terrorized into believing blatant falsehoods and turn on one another with shocking savagery.

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UK Man Sent To PRISON For 6 Months For Serving Snacks At Club During Lockdown

A 72-year-old man has been sentenced to six months in prison for the crime of serving mince pies with wine at his shooting club in 2020 while the area was under a lockdown.

The BBC reports that “Maurice Snelling broke tier three restrictions at Cloudside Shooting Grounds in 2020,” by allowing people to sit in at his premises rather than take away.

Mr Snelling pleaded guilty to perverting the course of justice, but argued that his club was in an area where restrictions stated visitors could sit inside and consume drinks if they were accompanied by food.

The judge presiding over the case was not convinced, however, and said “I find it hard to believe that Mr Snelling didn’t know which lockdown tier he was in.”

Police disrupted the gatherings at the time after residents in the area reported Snelling.

He reportedly refused to provide police CCTV from the club and allegedly attempted to have the footage destroyed, prompting the contractor company hosting it on a hard drive to hand it over to authorities.

The lawyer representing Snelling told the BBC that he has suffered ill health since the case began and “This has tarnished his reputation. He believed he was targeted by neighbours and this built up resentment of a man with good character.”

The report also notes that the Judge believed Snelling to be “anti-establishment, especially to the police. He doesn’t like being told what to do. He treated police with resentment.”

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Lockdowns: The Great Gaslighting

More than two years since the lockdowns of 2020, the political mainstream, particularly on the left, is just beginning to realize that the response to Covid was an unprecedented catastrophe.

But that realization hasn’t taken the form of a mea culpa. Far from it. On the contrary, in order to see that reality is starting to dawn on the mainstream left, one must read between the lines of how their narrative on the response to Covid has evolved over the past two years.

The narrative now goes something like this: Lockdowns never really happened, because governments never actually locked people in their homes; but if there were lockdowns, then they saved millions of lives and would have saved even more if only they’d been stricter; but if there were any collateral damage, then that damage was an inevitable consequence of the fear from the virus independent of the lockdowns; and even when things were shut down, the rules weren’t very strict; but even when the rules were strict, we didn’t really support them.

Put simply, the prevailing narrative of the mainstream left is that any upside from the response to Covid is attributable to the state-ordered closures and mandates that they supported, while any downside was an inevitable consequence of the virus independent of any state-ordered closures and mandates which never happened and which anyway they never supported. Got it? Good.

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The 70 Seconds that Shook the World

On March 16, 2020, following a long weekend of negotiations and deals about the coronavirus, Donald Trump, Deborah Birx, and Anthony Fauci spoke at a White House press conference for the first time about nationwide lockdowns. 

They handed out a sheet of paper – it mostly consisted of conventional health advice – that said in tiny print: “bars, restaurants, food courts, gyms, and other indoor and outdoor venues where groups of people congregate should be closed.”

Shut it all down. Everything. Everyone. As if the whole economy were a nightclub closing early. 

This amounted to a full repudiation of not only the Constitution but also freedom itself. At the very least, it was a fundamental attack on the First Amendment guarantees of the freedom of religion because it attacked the rights of Christians, Jews, Muslims, and everyone. 

All evidence suggests that Trump did not know that the tiny text was in there. 

The reading of the text was left to the question and answer session. 

Even when it was read by Fauci from the podium, Trump seemed distracted by something else, almost as if he did not hear or did not want to hear it. Later he bragged that the whole thing was his doing, but looking back at the history of that day, it is not so clear. 

Let’s take this apart frame by frame to understand what happened in these 70 seconds as part of the Q&A session. A reporter starts by asking whether the federal government is telling people to “avoid restaurants and bars” or if the government is saying that “bars and restaurants should shut down over the next 15 days.”

Both Fauci and Birx knew for sure that the guidelines were calling for them to shut down. 

After a long and tedious press conference about not much, following a very precise question, Trump turns to Fauci to have him answer. This might be because he wasn’t listening carefully and did not know how to respond. Fauci then motions to Birx, who rises to the podium. Fauci probably believed that she would be the one to do the dirty work of announcing the lockdowns. Fauci is clearly egging her on: now is your time. 

Birx begins her answer with a strategic deflection, speaking tendentiously about how long the virus lives on surfaces. It was nothing but smokescreen, and there is every reason to believe that she knew it. She pointedly was not answering the question. She chickened out at the last moment.  

A possibly frustrated Fauci interrupts here with a hand signal from the side. Birx immediately realizes what he was going to do: he was going to read the order that Trump did not know was there. So she decides to pass the buck. She gets giddy and silly with excitement, adrenaline flowing. She starts stumbling around with her words, and says in a faux-girlish way that she will let Fauci speak because he is her mentor. 

This was her way of saying that she would gladly pass this hot potato onto him. 

She likely knew that this was the great moment they had all been waiting for. She was mad with excitement. Oddly, Trump was smiling too but possibly because of her antics, not because of what was about to happen.

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First Came 9/11, Then COVID-19, What’s The Next Crisis To Lockdown The Nation?

“The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by an endless series of hobgoblins, most of them imaginary.”

– H.L. Mencken

First came 9/11, which the government used to transform itself into a police state.

Then the COVID-19 pandemic hit, which the police state used to test out its lockdown powers.

In light of the government’s tendency to exploit crises (legitimate or manufactured) and capitalize on the nation’s heightened emotions, confusion and fear as a means of extending the reach of the police state, one has to wonder what so-called crisis it will declare next.

It’s a simple enough formula: first, you create fear, then you capitalize on it by seizing power.

Frankly, it doesn’t even matter what the nature of the next national emergency might be (terrorism, civil unrest, economic collapse, a health scare, or the environment) as long as it allows the government to lockdown the nation and justify all manner of tyranny in the so-called name of national security.

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Fauci Claims He Never Recommended COVID-19 Lockdowns

White House medical adviser Anthony Fauci claimed Monday that he never recommended “locking anything down” when pressed about what he would do differently regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.

“First of all, I didn’t recommend locking anything down,” Fauci replied during an interview published by The Hill’s “Rising” program on Monday, suggesting it had been a recommendation from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

“Go back and look at my statements,” he added, “that we need to do everything we can to keep the schools open and safe.”

Although it’s unclear exactly what Fauci meant by lockdowns, in October 2020, Fauci had publicly recommended that former President Donald Trump “shut the whole country down,” although it’s not clear what he meant as presidents don’t have the authority to hand down sweeping lockdowns.

“When it became clear that we had community spread in the country … I recommended to the president that we shut the country down,” he said in an event with students at the College of the Holy Cross in October 2020.

If the United States didn’t “shut down completely the way China did,” then the spread of COVID-19 wouldn’t be stopped, Fauci continued to say at the time. The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) since early 2020 has pursued a “zero COVID” strategy that some analysts say is tantamount to economic suicide.

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Dr. Birx Admits She And Fauci Made Up ‘The Science’ On Lockdowns, Social Distancing

President Trump’s former Covid-19 adviser Dr. Deborah Birx has made several stunning admissions of late – first telling the Daily Mail that Covid-19 “came out of the box ready to infect” when it hit Wuhan, China in 2019 – and that it may have been created by Chinese scientists who were “working on coronavirus vaccines.”

But it goes further than that.

As Fox News’ Jesse Waters lays out, Birx admitted in her new book that she and Dr. Anthony Fauci were essentially shooting from the hip when it came to national directives such as “two weeks to stop the spread,” and social distancing requirements.

According to Waters, Birx “admitted to making things up,” adding that she and Fauci “were lying to the president and to the American people about their COVID protocols.”

With the first lie; ’15 days to stop the spread’ – Birx writes “No sooner had we convinced the Trump administration to implement our version of the two-week shutdown than I was trying to figure out how to extend it.”

“So that 15 days to slow the spread was just a sneaky way to get their hooks into us, so they could lock us down for longer,” Waters opines. “And if you dared to leave your house, Birx told us, the only way to stay safe was to social distance.”

To that end, Birx writes that she “I had settled on 10 (feet) knowing that even that was too many, but I figured that ten would at least be palatable for most Americans – high enough to allow for most gatherings of immediate family but not enough for large dinner parties and, critically, large weddings, birthday parties, and other mass social events…”

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