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This Is No Time for Victory Laps


The war of facts has been won, and in a rout. Lockdowns were an unworkable disaster, masks don’t work at all, and the vaccines don’t work as promised. And because the vaccines don’t curb infection and transmission, there is absolutely no ethical or epidemiological basis for vaccine mandates of any kind. 

No one who has done the slightest amount of individual research can reasonably contest these realities. Which is, of course, why no one living inside the mainstream media bubble ever agrees to a debate with those of us who have actually done our homework. 

Instead they call us names and seek to censor our views. 

We who have stood up to these bullies from the beginning should feel quite proud, and should, to paraphrase Roosevelt, accept the Covid mandators’ juvenile flight from productive debate with us as the badge of honor it truly is. As anyone who has been through seventh grade knows, intimidation-fueled mob rule can only be maintained for so long. And it appears that this particular playground festival of invective and group coercion has reached its expiration date. 

However, this is no time for victory laps. 


Because the abusers appear nowhere close to acknowledging, never mind apologizing for, what they have done. Rather, as a recently leaked Democratic Party strategy memo shows, their plan is to simply move on, and pretend—in defiance of all empirical proof—that all the things they subjected us to, especially the largely useless, and apparently dangerous lockdowns and mandates, are responsible for bringing an end to the crisis they themselves created. 

The hegemon is still alive and shows few signs of remorse.

Contemporary Americans and—quite sadly for me to admit as a long-time Europhile—members of the last generation or two of Western Europeans, seem perpetually mystified by the enmity their actions often provoke in other areas of the world. This inability to try and see the self as others might view them is especially pronounced in the educated classes of these societies, and is reinforced daily by that class’s overwhelming and ever-increasing domination of both the media and the strategic centers of their countries. 

Should someone in Poland or Hungary, influenced by the conscious embrace of the faith of their forefathers and their presumably also conscious reading of history and the empirical realities before their eyes, continue to insist that gender may actually be mostly biological, well, there’s an easy solution for that. 

You first use the media machine to portray people saying such things as primitive dolts, and then you marshal the organs of state to cancel them for their “inappropriate” desire to keep living according to their own well-considered values. You then “move on” to your next improvement project while heedlessly ignoring the human roadkill left in your wake. 

Projects like? 

Like deciding that, despite modern medicine’s long history of failure in controlling fast-mutating respiratory viruses with compulson, you were going to make completely eliminating a fast-mutating respiratory virus that only posed any serious threat to people already at or near life expectancy with a new and hardly tested new vaccine the controlling obsession all public health institutions across the so-called developed world. 

Like deciding you would then enforce the “righteousness” of this flat-out madness with the most sweeping propaganda, censorship program the world has ever known. And when a significant part of the population subjected to this onslaught continued to not recognize the obvious “sanity” of your madness, you would then coerce them into seeing the light by depriving them of their livelihoods and basic civil rights. 

You don’t have to admire the present Russian president to see that he might have been on to something if he in fact really said, as has often been suggested, that “negotiating with the United States is like playing chess against a pigeon: It struts around the board, knocks over the pieces, shits everywhere, and then declares victory.” 

My only critique to this statement would be that it is too limited in scope as it now applies quite accurately, in the wake of the Covid fiasco, to not only the architects of American foreign policy, but also most self-professed Progressive policy makers and journalists in the US and Western Europe. 

So what is to be done now with our excrement-laden social chessboard? 

In a halfway sane world, we would await the prosecution of the arrogant arsonists, and duly celebrate as they entered one-by-one through the jailhouse door. But if there is anything that we have learned, or should have learned, over these last two years is that the notion of accountability for actions taken has been effectively nullified for the well-heeled and the well-educated. 

Which is why their chosen strategy, as mentioned at the outset, is to simply pretend that they not only did nothing wrong, but that the crisis has now been overcome thanks to their destructive policy prescriptions. 

And given what we have seen in our recent past, they might very well get away with doing so. 

After all, has anyone paid a price for the destruction of Iraq, Libya or Syria? Have we even begun to have a conversation about the lies, deceptions and civic passivity that made these crimes against humanity, along with Vietnam perhaps the most significant in the world since 1945, possible? 

Is there any one in our media or academic establishment who will frontally consider the parallels between this wave of bloody criminality and the ones we obsessively analyze history classes not, it seems, to understand ourselves and our common human proclivity toward violence, but rather to reify our sense of having gone “beyond all that” in own self-evidently “special” path of moral development? 

No, as I have learned through the sad experience of observing addicted friends and acquaintances, narcissism is of the more intractable of our many human maladies, one that often grows stronger on those rare occasions when insight, and its sibling shame, seep into the brain of the deeply self-involved subject. 

And as the Covid story further unfolds, reasons for shame will be present around every corner. Hence the narcissistic desire to flee will only grow stronger among those who, imbued with their nihilistic grandeur, treated us all as their personal guinea pigs for over two years

So again, what is to be done? 

Well, if they come at us again as they did before we must confront them as warriors, in every way we possibly can. 

Short of that, we should do something that, as lovers of life and the infinite surprises found in our fellow men, we might at first find distasteful: ignore them with all the disciplined indifference we can muster. 

Let them live with their grim, hubristic, and ultimately self-defeating game of trying to domesticate the protean force of humanity as we get on with the difficult, Sisyphus-like, but also joyous job, of building a better, and more dignifying society for our children and our grandchildren. 

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  • Thomas Harrington

    Thomas Harrington, Senior Brownstone Scholar and Brownstone Fellow, is Professor Emeritus of Hispanic Studies at Trinity College in Hartford, CT, where he taught for 24 years. His research is on Iberian movements of national identity and contemporary Catalan culture. His essays are published at Words in The Pursuit of Light.

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