The true enemy is not the virus

As always, anything in yellow is a link to a purchase that helps support me.  A link in cyan is to something I’ve previously posted.  Please check out my last five posts:






Three posts selected from the past:




And don’t forget my CARTOONS, and my last LINKFEST. 

---


---

As an appetizer, consider this piece of information… from 2007 (bolding added):

Coronaviruses are well known to undergo genetic recombination (375), which may lead to new genotypes and outbreaks. The presence of a large reservoir of SARS-CoV-like viruses in horseshoe bats, together with the culture of eating exotic mammals in southern China, is a time bomb. The possibility of the reemergence of SARS and other novel viruses from animals or laboratories and therefore the need for preparedness should not be ignored.

They knew about the possibility of this for over a decade.  And did squat… diddly squat.  Zero.  Zilch.  Nada.  Worse than nothing.



AND SO I BEGIN…

I’ve been reflecting on the whole situation while watching my kids tear up the house amidst our desperate pleadings to do at least something resembling homework as their schools & activities try to kluge things together to do things remotely.  Watching them do sports warm-ups and routines at home has prompted reshuffling bedrooms to create more space, for example.

Thankfully I already work from home doing consulting; but it’s hard to concentrate when I’ve got Daaaaaaaaddy!!!!! screamed down to my basement office every few minutes – or having them fighting over nothing to the point where volume and screams mandate my intervention.  Plus the Honey Do list is being pushed by the wife whose job is on hiatus for the foreseeable future.  (Seriously, sweetie, do you not grasp that if my customers bail because I’m not doing the work, we’re f*cked?)

Aside: On the plus side, I’ve had an idea for some educational software that’s been rattling around my mind for a few years; I’ve started to draw some basic examples out.  As soon as I can afford it I’m going to start an LLC for it specifically, investigate IP protection, and then see if I can get it launched.  And it will spur me to “Learn to code” to try to do at least a basic demo concept myself.

Some commenters are openly dismissive of this being more than a “common flu” while others – with whom I tend to side, being the conservative risk-averse type – see it as probably far worse; e.g., It's A Hoax! It's Just Like The Flu!:

I hope this scares the shit out of you, wherever you are, and whenever you watch it. Maybe that'll finally be enough to shut up the naysayers that're too smart to believe this thing might be a problem, beyond maybe their 401K (if they can count that high).

Through some personal contacts as well, with people-who-know-people-who-are-talking-off-the-record, I’m hearing double-plus ungood stuff about this virus.  This includes some indications that recovery after infection does not confer full immunity – so a “second wave” is very possible (Hashem forbid a third wave!).  Another ungood supposition is that since bats tend to have higher body temperatures, the human fever response may not have any significant effect as the virus has evolved to withstand those elevated temperatures (but I can’t find the link to support this).  That, plus standard virus mutations every replication, does not fill me with warm fuzzy confidence this is “just a flu” impact.  If – again, Hashem forbid – this mutates to 20 or more percent lethality IMHO we’re facing a “Captain Trips” scenario vis a vis societal stability.



Regardless, let me take a step back.



CIVILIZATIONAL CONFIDENCE

Mark Steyn has a very interesting quote:

Great civilizations can survive a lot of things, but not impoverishment of spirit.

Which has brought a book I read some time ago to mind.  It was a fascinating book.  Very dry – academic-level dry – but filled with multiple examples of plagues in history and how they affected the cultures they infected.


Two tidbits from memory:

  • A plague in Greece was so accurately described by a physician who caught it and documented his symptoms and the disease’s progression that the consensus is the plague was Typhus.
  • A city (IIRC in Italy / Sicily) was built on a plateau and the only place an invading army could encamp was right next to a malarial swamp.  Within a week or so of setting things up, the invading army would be wracked by disease and would quickly withdraw – or at least be so weakened that their assaults on the city were easily repelled.

But back to one of the main lessons of the book:

Civilizations that have confidence in themselves, so by definition are growing, could and often did take enormous and multiple disease hits and yet the civilizations themselves continued onward. 

Consider the staggering population decline Western Civilization took from the Black Death:

(Image source)

Remember, this was not one percent, or anything comparable to what we’re seeing from Corona virus – this was a killing of, as accurately as we know, something like a third of the population.  Though, interesting, the impact was highly variable with some places being nearly annihilated, and others almost unscathed.  Relative wealth seems to have been a significant factor, as was cleanliness.  For example, Jews – whose culture emphasizes ritual cleaning and handwashing – were accused of starting the whole thing because those cleanliness practices helped to insulate the Jewish populations from the worst of the disease’s spread compared to the lack of hygiene and cleanliness amongst their Christian neighbors and rulers.  Quote from link just above (numbers are from references cited in the original link; I didn’t edit to remove them):

Throughout history, Jews were often less susceptible than others to pandemics and plagues such as the Black Death because of their concern for cleanliness and hygiene.8 Their neighbors, for the most part, never bathed. 9 Bathing was thought to be dangerous. Even kings and queens rarely bathed. Queen Isabella, who initiated the Spanish Inquisition and sponsored Columbus’s voyages, was said to have boasted of having taken but two baths in her entire life, when she was born and when she got married.10 Queen Elizabeth I is reputed to having been a noteworthy exception, shocking everyone by saying that she bathed once a month, “whether I needed it or not.” 11

As late as 1837, when Queen Victoria ascended to the British throne, there was no bathroom in Buckingham Palace. 12 In 1857, when Mormon leader Brigham Young was advised that the community adopt the practice of bathing weekly, he famously replied that he “had tried it” but he could not endorse it, saying that “it was not for everybody.”13

On the other hand, during the Spanish Inquisition, a sure sign indicating to Inquisitors that a Converso, an involuntary Jewish convert to Christianity, was in fact a secretly practicing Jew, was frequent washing and an affinity for personal hygiene.14

Regardless – Western Civilization was a growing, confident enterprise that recovered and continued its upward sweep, both in population and in development.

Are we confident?  Will we continue?



SHATTERED ILLUSIONS

In a fascinating facebook post entitled Stability Privilege (cited in my first essay on gun control) the author discusses the idea that we have an illusion that all is well and things cannot backslide to far worse conditions.

[Animal House - All Is Well! / 0:19]

Yet this stability has always been that: an illusion.  As a society we’ve believed it, living our lives trusting that everything is stable, that the seething churn of a more violent & unforgiving world and ugly human nature have been permanently shunted to the archaic past.  For example, over the past decade or so I’ve seen multiple references to being on a “new plateau” in the economy, technology, and human behavior – a phrase that I first saw when writing my American History term paper on the crash of 1929… where, before the crash, economists, politicians, and social scientists said that hard times were behind us and that we’d reached a new place – a “new plateau” – in terms of the economy and society’s advancement.  One sees it, in part, in the tech mania that so many have – putting more and more of our private information online, trusting the tech companies, gushing over implanted chips and a cashless society, and so on.

But now, all of a sudden, the idea that what was in the store in plenty yesterday, and reliably available today for purchase at will, might not be there tomorrow has rattled us – and far more deeply than any will let on.  Shopping in the last ten-plus days has seen toilet paper and other paper goods consistently stripped clean, rice & beans wiped out along with soups, pasta & sauce, cleaning supplies, etc.... all gone.  More importantly, discussions with the workers attempting to stock the shelves confirmed that as they stock items shoppers strip those same shelves bare again within hours.  People are clearly not reassured that things will return to normal soon.

(Image source)

News from Italy (see It's A Hoax! It's Just Like The Flu! – link from above repeated) is very worrisome.  Nobody really knows what’s going on in China but certainly nobody believes the positive numbers they release.  Iran is digging mass graves on scales that should terrify, easily visible in satellite images (with people not quarantining anywhere across the country to any degree).  We don’t know what’s going on in Africa or India with any accuracy (though a friend in India just told me they're essentially on lockdown nationally until the end of March with an extension likely), let alone other not-First World countries where the prevalent shame culture (link about Arabs/Islam specifically but the concepts apply to all such cultures) precludes accurate information lest the leadership be shamed at what could be perceived as failures of their leadership.


Gun stores are seeing increased business, and skittish liberals deciding that maybe there is something to this embarrassing Second Amendment find that NO they cannot actually buy guns mail-order through the internet as they’ve been told for years with every push for gun control.  (It’d be nice if they have an epiphany, like I did, that if they’ve been lied to on one subject maybe the enemedia can’t be trusted more generally.)




WHAT HAS BEEN SEEN…

Thomas Sowell, citing someone unknown-to-me, once said that civilization is a thin crust on a volcano.  The Corona virus has cracked that crust on which we’ve built so much, and people are seeing the magma bubbling underneath.  Whether we’ve always known it but denied it, or whether it’s truly being understood for the first time, we are in the process of seeing how fragile modern civilization can be – and that it could fall apart far more easily than we’ve believed.

(Image source)

That sudden sense of insecurity – that things may not be as stable or secure as thought – will not soon fade away.  We have seen what lies beneath the crust of “modern, stable civilization”.  Neither those cracks nor the seething magma below can be unseen.

More importantly, our confidence has already been under intentional and relentless assault for decades.  America (and more broadly Western Civilization) used to be, quoting Bill Whittle, “steely-eyed missile men” but now we are terrified of not using the right pronoun lest a twitter storm threaten your social circles, employment, and even your life itself.  Wilding mobs pull down statues that celebrate – or at least hold before our memory lest we forget – our past (including the men who founded America!), and both Europe and America are under relentless assault by Islamic invaders with tepid responses at best… and governments openly siding with the invaders over their own citizens.  We have people who are not only not having children to fight “climate change” but who actually murder their own children, then themselves, out of such fear.


And a large part of this comes from the denial of the divine, and the short-circuiting of our being hardwired by Him to believe in Him.



PRUDENCE IN OLD PROVERBS

We used to have sayings like “Put something aside for a rainy day” and other oh-so-quaint proverbs from the hoary past when things were not so certain… unlike the illusory “never ending upwards curve” of today’s techno-society.

(Image source)

I am half expecting that my relatives in Massachusetts, and possibly even my cousin in NYC (whom I discussed in The Shunning), will – should things get truly bad – ask to come up.  And my response will be a stern NO.

For years now I’ve warned them that it would be simply prudent to have 2-3 weeks of survival, choke-it-down food on hand.  Perhaps a few gallons of bottled water as well.  Both perfectly in line with readiness advice from the US Government.  And like the grasshopper in the Aesop fable The Ant and the Grasshopper, they refused to do so.  As have other liberals I’ve met in the last few years, they expect that the ant will be perfectly willing and happy to share; Liberalism in One Sentence (italics in original):

Well, one day yet another big box of Mainstay bars arrived at the office, and I got questioned about it.  Did I really think that things could collapse?  Yes.  Did I really believe that it might be some time before things stabilize?  Yes.  And so someone said, with an enormous grin on his face, but sincere tone… “Well, I guess I’ll just come to your house when things get bad.”  And that sh*tbird ex-Marine first mocked me saying that “nothing’s going to happen” – i.e., It can’t happen here.  Then he said “And if something does happen, I know your address and I’ll come take food from you.”  (And any Marine or servicemember who thinks this is acceptable, you too are a sh*tbird.)

Both are, more or less, expressing the same idea… the idea that they can – like Aesop’s grasshopper – dance and play and frolic… but when the time comes, the ant (i.e., me) will be expected to cough up my “fair share” and give to them.  The one who smiled is a clothes horse, always to-the-nines fashionable.  I know where his discretionary money goes.  That ex-Marine?  Also has things that he spends money on besides prepping.  And they’re not the only ones to express this plan to just come to my house when the fecal matter hits the air motivator because, obviously, I will just share what I’ve put aside with them out of the goodness of my own heart.

Not.



THE NEW NORMAL

So what’s the future?

We will survive this particular situation.  It will be hard economically, and certainly devastating for those whose friends or family members succumb.  But yes, we will survive.

So first, the offshoring of vital things, like medicines generally and antibiotics specifically, plus production of other medical / critical equipment, will be reversed (if not, C Suite people need to be dragged bodily from their oak-paneled offices).  Bills to highlight our critical medicine vulnerability are being proposed already, e.g., Josh Hawley Introduces Legislation to Expose Chinese Monopoly of U.S. Drug, Medical Supplies (link in original):

Hawley’s legislation follows as the Missouri populist wrote a letter this week to FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn, asking Hahn what actions he and the agency can take to ensure that American citizens do not face shortages of life-saving drugs and medical drugs.

The Missouri senator said Tuesday that the coronavirus outbreak has proved that America needs to “stop relying on China for our critical medical supply chains.”

Like the "appetizer" lead in, it's not like we weren't warned; an article in the New York Times-Traitor, in 2014 (paywall) had this critical sentence:

“The crucial ingredients for nearly all antibiotics, steroids and many other lifesaving drugs are now made exclusively in China.”

By extension this should include medical equipment as well.

Of course it’s not only medicines that we get from China and other nations, but critical military materials and equipment such as rare earth materials from China.  The potential exists for electronic suppliers like Japan, Malaysia, or Indonesia to use their grip on chip production for leverage, e.g., seen in the book The Japan That Can Say No, as well as foodstuffs across the board from multiple far-flung nations – all highlighting that while free trade is a good thing, with me agreeing with Milton Friedman in general:

So that the record of history is absolutely crystal clear. That there is no alternative way, so far discovered, of improving the lot of the ordinary people that can hold a candle to the productive activities that are unleashed by a free enterprise system.

and appreciating the vast economic knowledge of Thomas Sowell and his free trade advocacy:


only a Pollyana fool with an atrophied survival instinct would not recognize that the greatest economic good does not always translate to the greatest national good.  Nations don’t have friends, nations have interests.

Update: Speaking of national interest, here’s news:  Global Rush for Trump-Backed Virus Drug Sparks India Export Ban

Update 2: Coronavirus: The European Union Unravels
.  European nations are acting like nations that have self-interest, not one big happy borderless group.  Go figure.  And France Issues Rallying Calls to ‘Buy French’ as Coronavirus Erodes EU Single Market

Thus, one consequence of this will be a pull-back and reduction of offshoring (the C Suite will just have to accept their bonuses falling from six to four figures; I bleed for them – I won’t say from where).  The Reshoring Initiative is one organization, among many, that stands ready to help.

We also need to renew our understanding that nations matter:



Even as the globalists preach about a borderless world with everyone in kumbaya harmony (everyone in that ruling class having had John Lennon’s “Imagine” playing on auto-loop for too long, apparently) though the peoples disagree, the present virus crisis shows nations acting in their own interests; European Union: The End? (bolding added):

The coronavirus outbreak, however, is different from geographically isolated crises, such as forest fires in a member state that can be managed by pooling firefighting or other resources. When an entire continent is in the midst of a highly contagious virus epidemic, solidarity becomes a more complex issue. Every state inevitably considers whether it can afford to send facemasks and protective equipment that might be needed for its own citizens. In other words, every state considers its own national interest first. In the case of Italy's appeal for help, EU member states made their own interests their highest priority. This is classic state behavior and would not have caused any outrage prior to the establishment of the European Union.

What the coronavirus crisis reveals is that the member states of the European Union will revert to national interests when extreme circumstances call for it. While such revelations may not spell the immediate end of the European Union, they certainly raise questions about the point of an organization that pledges solidarity as a founding principle, but abandons that principle the moment it is most called for.

More broadly, our civilization – Western Civilization – matters:



As Greece struggles to defend all of Europe against the massed hordes of Islamic invaders, borders matter too.  Because nations are defined by borders, language, and culture.


So the second consequence will be a renewed sense of national pride and nationalism as multiple nations’ citizens realize that, ultimately, they stand alone.  With Brexit done, can Italexit be far behind as Italians have seen how the EU welched on their stated obligations and “high minded” principles – failing to come through when called?  Will that precipitate a cascading failure of the entire EU, and possibly even the UN itself, to hopefully follow?  Nationalism and populism are rising, and I expect that to accelerate.

Update: Globalism gone bust: Italians burn EU flag, vow to leave EU over EU's lousy coronavirus response

[Europeans Are Waking Up! | How Even Ordinary People Are Beginning to Take Action Against Immigration / 4:47]

Lastly, and in parallel with the rise of nationalism and the benefits of a high-trust monoculture being visible, e.g., Thought Trails from a Bar Mitzvah, will be the rise of understanding and renewed appreciation of the sweep of history of our own nations and cultures plus a serious reconsidering / rejection of the elitist worship of "diversity" and mass in-migration of culturally-incompatible people.  This will include an upswell in support of border security and repealing open-border, free-movement compacts.


Also, the globalist / Socialist / sexual pervert Left will have its longstanding slowly-slowly culture war more recognized and pushed back against.  They’ve been subtly pushing for a long time, and we've lost a lot of ground:








including their efforts through the enemedia:





and in the schools:





counting on our not knowing the true history and failures of Socialism, so we do not understand the war we’re in:





[Why Isn't Communism as Hated as Nazism? / 5:18]

After all, they learned Rules One and Two a long time ago:

Rule 1: It doesn’t matter what’s true, it’s what you can get people to believe.

Rule 2: If you control the information flow, you control what people believe.

Time to start understanding that, and fight back like it’s a war – because it is a war:








This includes understanding how the Left is allied with Islam to destroy the West:



plus understanding the history and doctrines of the Left’s Islamic ally:















THIS DAY WE FIGHT

[Famous Speeches: Aragorn at the Black Gate / 1:08]

For America.  For Europe.  For Western Civilization.  For Israel.   Other allies like India and Taiwan and Japan as well need to understand the strengths they have - and our mutual enemies that seek to divide us.  Without appreciating and having confidence in ourselves, our peoples, and our countries and civilization and faiths… Corona Virus or its successor, or Socialism, or the Islamic Lotus, will do us in. 

This is the true battle.  Not against a pathogen, but against the loss of our national and civilizational confidence.

Our Islamic enemies are also watching how we handle this; The Enemy Is Watching.  Compared to many other pathogens that could be used deliberately as weapons this virus seems benign.  I vote, absolutely, for a renewal of Smallpox vaccinations, for example.  And rapid-response plan needs to be developed to shut down travel globally should - say - Ebola make the one-flight hop to Europe or two-flight hop to the US; plus other preparations too.

Time will tell if we surmount this challenge.  I, for one, choose to fight.  America and Western Civilization entire are too precious to do otherwise.  The question before you is not just whether you will join me, it’s whether we – as countries (America, Israel, European nations, and other allied nations) and as a culture / civilization (Western Civilization) have the confidence to continue on.  Or will we, like so many civilizations before us, spiral down as we no longer have the will to go on?


Update: This quote just came to mind, rhyming with what I said about confidence and the true nature of this conflict being spiritual, not material:



I choose to fight.  And if that means people don’t like me in person, or on the internet, so be it.  This is for all the marbles, people... and if we lose, there will be no home to take our few remaining marbles to.  Let's find out who our real friends are, foreign and domestic - and begin.


---

I do not compromise with cancer.  I do not find common ground with gangrene.  The allied enslavers of mankind, the Left and Islam, must be fought and destroyed… or we will sentence our children to a thousand years of darkness – whether under the tyranny of Socialism or Islam.

---


---

© 2020 NITZAKHON

Comments

  1. YES. Great war links, btw.

    ReplyDelete
  2. And a large part of this comes from the denial of the divine, and the short-circuiting of our being hardwired by Him to believe in Him.

    IMO it's the major part. But that's just me.

    Excellent post, RPJ

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Kinda got torn out of me - I was compelled to write it.

      Delete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

The .223 Solution

An Open Letter to a Politically-Conservative Jewish Friend

G-d Damn You Barbara Spectre!