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The Importance of Being Obnoxious
Dictionary.com defines “obnoxious” as…
- highly objectionable or offensive; odious:
- annoying or objectionable due to being a show-off or attracting undue attention to oneself:
an obnoxious little brat.
- Archaic. exposed or liable to harm, evil, or anything objectionable.
- Obsolete. liable to punishment or censure; reprehensible.
For this post, I am emphasizing the second alternative meaning: annoying or objectionable due to … attracting undue attention to oneself.
I have read two recent articles that, for me, highlight how being “good little citizens” actually harms our fellow man. And we need to stop it. And our government has to know that we are going to be obnoxious about it, if for no other reason than to make sure our fellow citizens, if they are likewise inclined, can join us and make our voices count.
The first article was brought to my attention by @richardeaston, who posted a link to it in The Red Pill Faculty Lounge. It is about San Jose’s Calvary Chapel and its defiance of Santa Clara County’s health orders closing churches in 2020. The County imposed over $2 million in fines which have not been collected. But the church no doubt has spent plenty in litigation over these fines. The US Supreme Court killed one of the lines of County attack: the ban on gathering in churches. But the County is still pursuing violations of mask mandates. One assumes, maybe hopes, that this claim will be laid to rest soon as well.
I lived in the Bay Area for most of 2020, but I don’t recall the dispute with Calvary Chapel. Maybe it was covered in local media, likely with disapprobation. But I didn’t really hear of it. I remember a dispute with a church in Southern California. I can only imagine that the media was not interested in highlighting successful resistance. They were more interested in stoking fear and compliance. “If it bleeds, it leads.” Except when the story is, “it doesn’t bleed.”
But fortunately, the faithful in San Jose did hear of it. And they flocked to the church.
When I spoke with Pastor Mike McClure he confirmed that Calvary’s attendance exploded during the pandemic, roughly matching the numbers from Ho’s report. At a certain point Calvary began holding two Sunday services, with close to a thousand attendees in each. McClure also said that prior to 2020, he performed fifty to 100 baptisms a year. During the pandemic, and continuing now, he has averaged 1,000 each year. The church wasn’t just attended by its own members, but also by hundreds of people, like Bryan Wells, who weren’t members but came because it was the only spiritual place open.
The Calvary attendees I spoke with were not firebrands and provocateurs. They were not demanding on March 17, 2020 that barbershops be allowed to give haircuts. McClure told me the church membership runs the gamut from blue collar workers, to doctors and lawyers, construction contractors, and grocery store cashiers. These are everyday people who, after months of being denied what they felt they needed to thrive — and for some, to survive — were pushed to act, even though it was against the rules decreed by a county official.
None of the people I interviewed thought Covid was a hoax, or that the vaccine was a conspiracy by Bill Gates, or any other nonsense that has so often been ascribed to anyone who didn’t want to follow every Covid rule without questions. They just had a different risk benefit calculation than those made by the authorities, and after some time they felt backed into a corner to the point where they could no longer comply.
I recall the arrest of the Canadian minister by the RCMP. But the government, with media assistance, was very good at promoting isolation and media focus where they wanted it, not where they didn’t want it. And this is where we need to get obnoxious. When the next scare comes, and you can bet there is going to be another scare, we need to resist and resist hard.
The second article is a confession of sorts by the founder of Instapundit, law professor Glenn Harland Reynolds, How I Was Wrong About Covid: When even libertarians trust the government too much. He writes at Substack…
In the early days, I was a Covid hawk, but I was wrong to be. It seemed right at the time. The Chinese called it a “grave” threat, and their tendency had always been to downplay bad things in China. There were reports of death rates ranging from 4% to 10%.
Sure, Anthony Fauci and Nancy Pelosi and Bill DeBlasio were telling us not to worry and go visit Chinatown, but I lacked confidence in them. (Hey, I was right about that.) They reversed course like a week later.
It turned out, of course, that Covid’s mortality rate was significantly less than 1/10 of those early reports, and those deaths were mostly concentrated among the obese, the elderly, and those with heart failure and diabetes. (Even in those early days, just about exactly three years ago now, my yoga teacher told me that her son-in-law, an ER doc in New Orleans, said that all his Covid ICU patients were morbidly obese). Neither the lockdowns nor the masking requirements did any good, really, though they caused a lot of trauma, inconvenience, and colossal economic destruction.
In retrospect, I should have been more skeptical. It’s hard to believe that I, of all people, trusted the government too much, but there you are. Well, lesson learned.
And the lesson is that the “expert” class failed us again. How much was failure, and how much was deliberate malfeasance, remains to be seen, though the evidence keeps piling up in favor of the latter.
And in fact, that’s the biggest lesson of the past few years. Again and again, claims to expertise turn out to have been cloaks for politicized misbehavior. “Professionalism” has turned out to be no protection against partisanship. And America’s cold class war between the Gentry Class and the normal-American community has escalated.
Bill O’Reilly has framed what is going on this country in general as the “crazies” vs. the “normals.” And he is offering the opportunity to publicize your normality in clothing, coffee mugs, and stickers. He calls it the Team Normal collection. Bill is so well-known for being obnoxious that I am using him as the exemplar that I am encouraging everyone to follow for the next scare, the next push, that the progressive “crazies” (and malign geniuses if they be) promote.
“I am mad as hell, and I am not going to take it anymore” needs to be our rallying cry. Team Normal has to oppose Team Crazy openly, vocally, and in every other way.Published in General
Agreed, but for a moment there, I thought this was going to be another post about having an ignore button. ;-)
On the right the term “obnoxious” has been redefined as “toughness”. :(
I agree! It’s just that it’s difficult to know when we have moved from obnoxious to disgusting. I think sometimes my writing can be tough, but I don’t especially like to do it. To me, it can show a lack of discipline. So I’ll need to focus on how to be obnoxiously disciplined. H.m.m.m…….
Edit: Or is it be disciplined in my obnoxiousness . . . maybe I’d better just quit here . . .
I love the “Team Normal” shirts and have bookmarked this so I can buy one when I return home.
Team Normal does not have be Team Compliant. Being non-compliant is not always obnoxious. Good people have to say “no” is a lesson from history.
Some of the problems we are having stem from the professional organizations that license individuals to practice in whatever field they are in. The battles that need to be had must be between people who are in the field and who are respected as being qualified to assert an opinion.
I’ve encountered many stories over the years of professionals being shunned for wrong thinking. My favorite was Ben Stein’s 2008 Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed, a documentary on what happens to professors who don’t toe the evolution line.
The existence of professional organizations is a curse and blessing. They create standards, a good thing, but they squash innovation and argument, a bad thing. Unless these professional organizations change, we are all going to suffer because when they are wrong, it’s a big error with lots of victims.
Sounds like something a science denier would say.
If the people inside the organizations or under the thumb of the associations allowed their consciences to be their guides, it would not matter at all whether or not the orgs and associations promoted criminal activities.
I was extremely gob smacked recently when a woman doctor over in England came out with her thoughts that “What could the poor doctors do? They had families to feed, and who needed to continue having housing and the automobiles.”
So those doctors gave in and allowed for morphine and Midazolam to be prescribed. (Here in the USA, it was fentanyl, remdesivir and rocephin.) They did this even though those drugs should not be put inside the bodies of people with respiratory conditions. Sure maybe once in a while they might be necessary but then at moderate levels. (The exception would be at the end of life.)
Dr Mike Yeadon looked into this issue and found that sometimes the “official” prescribed” drug dosage of these two meds was 3 to 5 times higher than it ever should have been. He has also made statements that such medical malpractice resulted in hundreds of thousands of unnecessary deaths for COV patients especially in care homes.
The logic of drs being encouraged and “forced” to do criminal things but still have patients was based on a principle of “our society revers doctors, as once when they were college age, they went in and absorbed a lot of education.”
So therefore they deserve our respect. Of course, we should understand that their first oath is to themselves, and secondly that of maintaining their med license. And if those elements require the Hippocratic oath to be dismissed, so be it. (As long as they pay verbal homage to how much they believe in the “science” that forced them to kill their patients.)
I will do my duty and be obnoxious, gently.
Funny. So did I. It highlights “undue attention to one’s self”. Obvious troll is obvious.