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Brownstone Institute at Two Years 


The crisis of our times has deep roots but came to a head with the appalling decision in March 2020 to forcibly shut down life itself in the name of virus control. It’s a wonder anyone believed this would work. Elites deployed one nostrum after another – shutdowns, travel restrictions, church and school closures, restrictions on gatherings, oceans of sanitizer, Plexiglas and officious signage, and finally untested shot mandates – to control the microbial kingdom. 

They failed but they are still in power and not admitting error. Many of the original lockdowners are retired, fired, or otherwise out of public life. But they are replaced by their students, colleagues, and networked cronies. This is true in politics, media, tech, and the Deep State. 

The goals are simple. Keep the cover-up going for as long as possible. Deny the obvious. Smear the truth tellers. Censor dissidents. 

This is the core reason for the perpetration of multiple crises in every aspect of public and private life. It has hit literacy, health, economic well-being, investor confidence, psychology, demographics, and of course politics and trust generally. None of us wanted to live in such times but it is undeniable that they are here. Tracing cause and effect is imperative and so is assigning blame. It’s the only way out. 

It is tragically true that most official institutions went along with the destruction. That’s especially true of the world of ideas, which bore a dreadful blow from the combination of career-minded cowardice and censorship. That was followed by a purge of the non-compliant that was only superficially related to vaccine mandates. The real purpose was to seek and destroy those who would not go along to get along. 

Brownstone Institute posted its first round of responses two years ago this week. Since then, we’ve published 1,831 pieces, some opinion, some research, some history, and some inspiration, covering public health, economics, psychology, philosophy, education, law, media, and technology. Publishing under a commons license, we’ve welcomed all reprints and translation, since the point is to get the word out. 

In this time, we’ve also held 24 events, including large gatherings, supper clubs, film screenings, and retreats for scholars and fellows. The Fellows program seeks out writers, thinkers, and doers who merit and need support. The goal is to provide sanctuary and community in times of incredible professional upheaval. Each fellow has a story of the cost of courage. In addition, we’ve published six books with more on the way. 

Part of the ambition of Brownstone Institute was to reinvent the research institute on a model of integrity and efficiency. We all know how most nonprofits run: huge and expanding management structures, cost overruns, and minimalist goal orientation. We set out with a different model: tiny staff, minimalist costing, and maximum focus on mission and goal. Two years later, we have the same model, with each expansion entirely devoted to the original vision. 

It’s making a massive difference in private and public life. We receive notes of gratitude daily for content that is rigorous and accessible, perfect for sharing with others who seek answers and solutions. Our many thousands of supporters have been generous in supporting the need for an alternative understanding. It’s been a lifeline for this institution because we receive no support from government or Deep-State connection sources of money. 

Covid was of course the original driving impetus but a government and its connected interests became intoxicated with power, using the confidence they gained in lockdowns for other nefarious acts. As a result, we quickly moved to the broader crisis over civil liberties, censorship, digital invasiveness, and the unleashing of the administrative powers of the state. Daily, the ruling class is drumming up new excuses to retain the power they gained and expand it. 

Behind the entire mess is an epic debate about the initial pandemic response. As you know, they are sticking by their story regardless of the evidence. Not even hard proof of deception and deceit makes the news, much less rocks the establishment. That is left to dissidents like us to get the word out. 

There can be no real healing from this episode without truth. Our wonderful team of writers and researchers agree and work toward finding it daily, with every confidence that it is out there and with every determination to reveal it in ways that can be understood. As a publishing outlet and a source of support for thinking differently, Brownstone does stand out. 

This is a time for truth. There is no time to waste. This might be our only choice. It’s not maudlin or exaggerated to say that civilization is at stake. This generation faces a real choice between freedom and barbarism with a digital face. We need to choose wisely and with courage in the face of evil. 

This is the work of Brownstone Institute. We and our donors have every reason to be proud of what we’ve accomplished in such a short time but there is a long way to go. Thank you for being there for this great work

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