Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. I Was Right All Along

 

There are lots of arguments here about whether we really are exponential, or in a best-case or worst-case scenario. Passions are high. And in a month, everyone on this site will be exclaiming how they were right all along. I know, because I am quite sure I will be one of them. Just wanted to get that out there. Indeed, I want it on record that I am the first to announce that I was right. So there.

Every so often we have an argument between dark-age religious fanatics and enlightened atheists, in which the enlightened explain that humanism and love of life do not require any religious text, that principles of decent society are in fact essentially obvious to any decent person.

My answer, speaking without permission on behalf of the great unwashed, is that in times of normality, good people are found everywhere. It is in times of crisis that you need a touchstone text, a document that reminds us of the lines between civilization and barbarism. Those who lack a touchstone find themselves able to justify anything in the moment.

This entire Lung Pao Sicken (WuFlu/Kung Flu/CCP Virus) panic is doing a similar thing, but in peculiar ways. Instead of dividing between the believers and the unbelievers, or even the stupid and the smart, it is opening a chasm between the Collective and the Contrarians.

The Collective are, of course, everyone who, if not quite planning to die themselves, think we need to plan for the Worst Case, and act accordingly. That is still most people out there. I wish it was not. To me, the Collective find themselves able to justify invasions of privacy and freedoms that anyone would have rejected just a few weeks ago. Even the Constitution is no longer a touchstone.

The Contrarians are those who may not be sure of much, but we are sure that most people are wrong most of the time. Contrarians almost reflexively think that this whole situation stinks to high heaven. To us, “Everyone thinks” is invariably a mob mentality, like Climate Change or Eugenics in its day. To at least some of us (after all, some Contrarians don’t even agree with me!), this whole thing is a media plot to bump Trump, or Make the Media Relevant Again, or launch massive government invasions of our rights and liberties.

Until we have the benefit of hindsight, we won’t know who was right. And, as I mentioned in the first paragraph, each of us will righteously proclaim our wisdom a month from now, whatever happens between now and then! You can be quite sure that I will do it again.

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  1. CB Toder aka Mama Toad Member
    CB Toder aka Mama Toad Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Thank you iWe for your unceasing good cheer, optimism, and confidence!

    • #1
    • March 22, 2020, at 6:57 PM PDT
    • 8 likes
  2. CB Toder aka Mama Toad Member
    CB Toder aka Mama Toad Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    I can’t read this thing without deep deep laughter welling up….

    • #2
    • March 22, 2020, at 6:57 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  3. Sisyphus (Rolling Stone) Coolidge
    Sisyphus (Rolling Stone) Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    We should know enough to chart the optimal course through this situation sometime late this or early next century. In the meantime, help your neighbors where you can and stay well.

    • #3
    • March 22, 2020, at 7:22 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  4. Gossamer Cat Coolidge

    I have to say that this is my favorite COVID-19 post. I am a Contrarian (glad to have an official label) and despite all of the back and forth arguing on other posts using various formulas, I will admit that my deep abiding belief that this is an over reaction is based not on the data or the analyses but on my belief as a contrarian that “…most people are wrong most of the time”. I’m prepared to be wrong this time, but the odds are in my favor according to the Contrarian Creed. 

    • #4
    • March 22, 2020, at 7:45 PM PDT
    • 12 likes
  5. OldPhil Coolidge

    See the source image

    • #5
    • March 22, 2020, at 7:47 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  6. DonG (skeptic) Coolidge

    I am confident that in 2 months I will look back and see I was right in my current thoughts of total confusion and uncertainty. 

    • #6
    • March 22, 2020, at 8:07 PM PDT
    • 10 likes
  7. Ultron Will Inject You Now Coolidge
    Ultron Will Inject You Now Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Did someone say Eugenics? 

    https://vimeo.com/147695523

    • #7
    • March 22, 2020, at 8:27 PM PDT
    • 2 likes
  8. Ultron Will Inject You Now Coolidge
    Ultron Will Inject You Now Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Did someone say Eugenics? 

    MADE IN AMERICA!

    • #8
    • March 22, 2020, at 8:28 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  9. Unsk Member

    IWe,

    Weeks ago I was one of your “Collective”, arguing we need to plan for the worst case scenario- that is be prepared and be prepared for the worst case scenario because from the beginning this CoronaVirus pandemic raised a huge number of red flags and had all the markings of something that could infect the whole world which to some extent it has. However, I never advocated to take people lives, their jobs and their rights.

    Now I am a one of your “Contrarians”. The latest “Stay at Home” quarantine orders are nothing more than a Commie/Leftist power grab that will destroy this country if we let it go on too long. South Korea turned back this contagion without going full lockdown as so many Blue States have now done. There are prudent, sensible measures that can be taken but we do not need to go full Lockdown. At least not yet. 

    “Every so often we have an argument between dark age religious fanatics and enlightened atheists, in which the enlightened explain that humanism and love of life do not require any religious text, that principles of decent society are in fact essentially obvious to any decent person.”

    Complete nonsense. A more enlightened person would know that there are large segments of the world even today where your “principles of decent society are in fact essentially obvious to any decent person” do not apply at all. Look at Islam and our enemy China. Our ideas of compassion, freedom, and civil rights do not exist at all in their indigenous culture. Only our influence has opened the eyes of their populace.

    Our Western “principles of decent society” were developed from Judeo-Christian thought. Jesus Christ was a political revolutionary as much as a Savior in that his ideas turned upside down the established ideas of almost all societies at the time from the idea that a person was a vassal and property of the King/Emperor into “all men are equal under God” and the idea to “love thy neighbor as thyself”. Our ideas of Democratic thought, Freedom, Civil Rights and Christian compassion were developed from his ideas. Almost all “good” enlightened Atheists developed their ideas in a Judeo/Christian Cultural milieu and developed their belief systems into a kind of a neutered Christianity where there was no God to judge but that adhered to many of the same ideas of compassion, justice and right and wrong that are not found in many other foreign cultures. 

     

    • #9
    • March 22, 2020, at 10:18 PM PDT
    • 4 likes
  10. iWe Reagan
    iWe Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Unsk (View Comment):

     

    “Every so often we have an argument between dark age religious fanatics and enlightened atheists, in which the enlightened explain that humanism and love of life do not require any religious text, that principles of decent society are in fact essentially obvious to any decent person.”

    Complete nonsense.

    I love it! You took my sarcasm seriously!

    A more enlightened person would know that there are large segments of the world even today where your “principles of decent society are in fact essentially obvious to any decent person” do not apply at all. Look at Islam and our enemy China. Our ideas of compassion, freedom, and civil rights do not exist at all in their indigenous culture. Only our influence has opened the eyes of their populace.

    Agreed.

    Our Western “principles of decent society” were developed from Judeo-Christian thought. Jesus Christ was a political revolutionary as much as a Savior in that his ideas turned upside down the established ideas of almost all societies at the time from the idea that a person was a vassal and property of the King/Emperor into “all men are equal under God” and the idea to “love thy neighbor as thyself”.

    As a Jew I quibble – since both of these concepts are in the Torah, not an innovation from Christianity, though there is no doubt that Christianity was better at promoting both these ideas than the Judaism of the age was.

    Our ideas of Democratic thought, Freedom, Civil Rights and Christian compassion were developed from his ideas. Almost all “good” enlightened Atheists developed their ideas in a Judeo/Christian Cultural milieu and developed their belief systems into a kind of a neutered Christianity where there was no God to judge but that adhered to many of the same ideas of compassion, justice and right and wrong that are not found in many other foreign cultures. 

    Yes!

    • #10
    • March 23, 2020, at 4:16 AM PDT
    • 5 likes
  11. Front Seat Cat Member

    No one will care who was right or wrong on the other side of this, only that they, their loved ones, friends, family, neighbors made it through and are still with us. For those still without faith, it may be the tipping point – God is still leaving the porch lights on at this moment.

    • #11
    • March 23, 2020, at 5:48 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  12. GrannyDude Member

    iWe: To at least some of us (after all, some Contrarians don’t even agree with me!), this whole thing is a media plot to bump Trump, or Make the Media Relevant Again, or launch massive government invasions of our rights and liberties.

    This is the part I disagree with.

    That is, I am willing to believe that the Wuhan Woo-Hoo is a really big deal, deserving of this much and more. This isn’t because I’m a sucker for media hype, but because Bad Things Happen, and among these are truly bad germs. 

    I am also willing to believe—or at least countenance the idea—that the panic is a bigger problem than the results of the pandemic. Bad Things Happen, and among these are truly bad ideas. 

    What doesn’t make sense to me is that this whole thing is a media plot—that is, a conspiracy to unseat Trump. I just don’t think they’re that clever. I think what we’re seeing is a group of not particularly smart and abysmally incurious people who, from within their little bubbles (and they are little bubbles) are seeing this the way they see everything. They literally have no other tools in their tiny tiny tool chests. 

     

    • #12
    • March 23, 2020, at 6:02 AM PDT
    • 7 likes
  13. iWe Reagan
    iWe Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    GrannyDude (View Comment):
    What doesn’t make sense to me is that this whole thing is a media plot—that is, a conspiracy to unseat Trump. I just don’t think they’re that clever. 

    You don’t think the media loves being believed again? Being able to move and sway public opinion again? It all nicely dovetails with much of the liberal dream: government control, a bad economy during a Republican administration… never let a good crisis go to waste.

    • #13
    • March 23, 2020, at 7:29 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  14. The Reticulator Member

    Front Seat Cat (View Comment):

    No one will care who was right or wrong on the other side of this, only that they, their loved ones, friends, family, neighbors made it through and are still with us. For those still without faith, it may be the tipping point – God is still leaving the porch lights on at this moment.

    I will care who was right or wrong. I’m sharpening my finger in preparation for some serious pointing.

    • #14
    • March 23, 2020, at 7:35 AM PDT
    • 4 likes
  15. Ontheleftcoast Member

    Unsk (View Comment):

     Almost all “good” enlightened Atheists developed their ideas in a Judeo/Christian Cultural milieu and developed their belief systems into a kind of a neutered Christianity where there was no God to judge but that adhered to many of the same ideas of compassion, justice and right and wrong that are not found in many other foreign cultures. 

    They’re eating the seed corn.

    • #15
    • March 23, 2020, at 10:51 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  16. Brian Wyneken Member

    “Okay, I’m with you fellas.”

    – Delmar O’Donnell

    • #16
    • March 23, 2020, at 10:52 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  17. Skyler Coolidge

    Unsk (View Comment):
    Our Western “principles of decent society” were developed from Judeo-Christian thought.

    Actually, they come from the Greeks and Romans. The Christians came from the Greeks and Roman people, mostly, and they modified Christianity to fit their pre-existing mores.

    • #17
    • March 23, 2020, at 11:11 AM PDT
    • Like
  18. OmegaPaladin Moderator

    I hope you are right.

    This is a rare occurrence, because I cannot stand you and I think you are wrong about most things, including now.

    But if you are right, a lot fewer people will die. And that is a good thing.

    But hey, I’m just a member of the evil “collective”.

    • #18
    • March 23, 2020, at 11:16 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
  19. Kay of MT Member

    An exchange between 2 people I know, and this person responded:

    I could be wrong but I think that in this case the preexisting condition would be the 
    natural ability to conceive, carry to term and give birth. If so, abortion and birth
    control both would be efforts to defeat or "cure" a preexisting condition. If simply
    being a woman was a preexisting condition, I don't see how a woman could get health
    insurance at all. I don't know but surely there must be exceptions in cases such as
    a pregnancy with complications that create a high probability of death to the woman
    if the pregnancy were not aborted. I guess it's sort of like men can't get insurance
    for being insensitive.
    This person wrote: Medical coverage is often reduced for “female” ailments and being female has often
    been cited as a “pre-existing condition” and the reason not to cover women’s reproductive
    needs, such as birth control and abortion. However, as we are seeing now, more men are
    catching and dying from covid-19. Should being male in this case be considered a
    “pre-existing condition” and not covered by medical plans? Wouldn’t that be ironic?
    • #19
    • March 23, 2020, at 11:33 AM PDT
    • Like
  20. iWe Reagan
    iWe Joined in the first year of Ricochet Ricochet Charter Member

    Skyler (View Comment):

    Unsk (View Comment):
    Our Western “principles of decent society” were developed from Judeo-Christian thought.

    Actually, they come from the Greeks and Romans. 

    Neither the Greeks or Romans believed in life for its own sake, or each man made in the image of G-d. Neither held one law for both natives and foreigners. 

    • #20
    • March 23, 2020, at 11:45 AM PDT
    • 7 likes
  21. Ontheleftcoast Member

    Skyler (View Comment):

    Unsk (View Comment):
    Our Western “principles of decent society” were developed from Judeo-Christian thought.

    Actually, they come from the Greeks and Romans. The Christians came from the Greeks and Roman people, mostly, and they modified Christianity to fit their pre-existing mores.

    The collision between Athens and Jerusalem.

    • #21
    • March 23, 2020, at 1:54 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  22. Ontheleftcoast Member

    iWe (View Comment):

    Skyler (View Comment):

    Unsk (View Comment):
    Our Western “principles of decent society” were developed from Judeo-Christian thought.

    Actually, they come from the Greeks and Romans.

    Neither the Greeks or Romans believed in life for its own sake, or each man made in the image of G-d. Neither held one law for both natives and foreigners.

    That’s one aspect of it; perhaps Socrates took things as far as he could, but he wasn’t Abraham.

    There’s something else about Greece.

    Classicist Mary Lefkowitz’ Not Out of Africa not only did a good job debunking Afrocentrism (and IIRC the trite and weird things the Masons did with Egypt) she also described in passing how the Greek mystery cults worked. As I read her description, I thought of all the weekend metaphysical and personal growth workshops I saw flyers for on telephone poles around Berkeley and posted in its bookstores.

    Secret initiations conveniently scheduled around religious festivals when people were off work (if they worked) in which you learned the secrets of the universe in a few days. The ability to achieve higher initiations. You get the idea. 

    “I can’t think why fancy religions should have such a ghastly effect on one’s grammar.”
    “It’s a kind of intellectual rot that sets in, I’m afraid. But which of them causes the other, or whether they’re both symptoms of something else, I don’t know. What with Trimmer’s mental healing, and Henderson going nudist—”
    “No!”
    “Fact. There she is, at the next table. That’s why she’s so brown.”
    “And her frock so badly cut. If you can’t be naked, be as ill-dressed as possible, I suppose.”
    “I sometimes wonder whether a little normal, hearty wickedness wouldn’t be good for a great many of us.”

    Excerpt From: Dorothy L. Sayers. “Gaudy Night.” Apple Books.

    So the tendency to confuse “it’s simple” with “it’s easy” and then a sort of Gresham’s law of religion.

    • #22
    • March 23, 2020, at 2:13 PM PDT
    • 1 like
  23. Danny Alexander Member

    I’m with GrannyDude on this, based on the following reasoning.

    If the virus — as I strongly suspect — emerged, however accidentally, from the virology lab in Wuhan, all bets are off.

    In China at present, all evidence points to continued ravages at least in Wuhan (and elsewhere in Hubei province?), notwithstanding the Xi regime’s fiat that victory be proclaimed. (See reporting in The Daily Caller as well as Helen Raleigh’s latest column at The Federalist.)

    Prior to said fiat, the CCP/PLA dictatorship engaged in a containment campaign that effectively trashed wide-ranging segments of the PRC economy, and unhesitatingly condemned a significant number of Wuhan/Hubei denizens to their premature demise through drastic lockdown of the populace there (and elsewhere in the country for a period of time). Personally, I find it next to impossible to accept that this is anywhere remotely a garden-variety SOP response to a naturally occurring virus, however strong.

    I made the abrupt decision in mid-February to relocate from Tokyo to Boston — notwithstanding the valuable 2.5 years of validity I had left on my Japanese work visa — with this concern top of mind. Of course, my hopes of finding refuge in Fortress America proved misplaced — so I’m left with praying that my assessment of the nature of the virus also proves spectacularly wrong.

    • #23
    • March 23, 2020, at 9:46 PM PDT
    • 3 likes
  24. Roderic Coolidge

    The rate of growth of numbers of newly diagnosed COVID-19 in the US has fallen a bit, from about 33% new cases a day to about 25%. We can only hope and pray that this is a trend that continues. There is nothing certain about it. We don’t know where it is going to peak out.

    To be clear about how I’m calculating these rates, the number of new cases counted in a day is divided by the total number of cases there were when that day started times 100 (for the percentage).

    • #24
    • March 25, 2020, at 10:30 AM PDT
    • 2 likes
    • This comment has been edited.