We Were a Community of People. Now We’re a Society of Tribes.

 

A friend of mine is remodeling a bathroom for somebody in Zanesville, Ohio.  He found some newspapers under the floor from 1992.  He posted this picture on Facebook, of the daily newspaper column listing the local hospital admissions and discharges.  Complete with the patients’ home addresses, so you could go visit or bring them flowers or food or something. Keep in mind: that was 29 years ago.

And then ten years ago, if you walked up to the front desk to ask if your friend was in the hospital, they would tell you that they were not allowed to release that information.  And now, if a wife goes to visit her dying husband, they won’t let her in the door because of COVID.  And so, he dies alone.  It seems like a minor point, how we handle our sick friends and neighbors.  But our society is changing, rapidly.  As the modern tribal left takes over, our society becomes more fragmented and hostile, and less community-oriented.  Less human.  This is hard to watch.

I would write a full post about it, to explore the idea in more depth.  But it’s too depressing.  I miss America.

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  1. Sisyphus Member
    Sisyphus
    @Sisyphus

    Me, too. Imagine a country too poor to supply PPE to family and clergy, forced to treat them as disease vectors rather than children of the living God. It is a poverty beyond all humane understanding. How many have chosen and will choose to die in their own beds rather than subject themselves and their loved ones to such inhumanity?

    • #1
  2. Susan Quinn Contributor
    Susan Quinn
    @SusanQuinn

    When we need each other more than ever, too many want to splinter us apart. It is so sad.

    • #2
  3. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    Dr. Bastiat: And now, if a wife goes to visit her dying husband, they won’t let her in the door because of COVID.  And he dies alone.

    As I’ve said before, this is the most cruel COVID restriction.  Weddings can be rescheduled, same with reunions – but death?  Oh no . . .

    • #3
  4. The Other Diane Coolidge
    The Other Diane
    @TheOtherDiane

    It’s bad out there, I agree, but some states are freer than others and I’m very, very glad to live in Florida right now.

    The restrictions on visitation of dying patients must vary state to state because I didn’t have that experience with my mom last year.  She was seriously ill with osteomyelitis of the spine and spent most of August to late November in five different hospitals.  She had 3 long stays from August -October, first in a hospital in Lake Wales and then Winter Haven Hospital (both in Polk County), then after she was dumped out of WHH too early for the second time she ended up at the ER closer to me in Sebring (Highlands County) where they saw bone breakage in the spine and ordered a transfer to Tampa (Hillsborough County).  Too old for surgery so a lifetime of antibiotics was prescribed and she finished up with 3 weeks in a rehab wing in Wauchula (Hardee County).

    Covid restrictions were very tight in all hospitals and we couldn’t visit her at all until Sept 10, BUT with every single hospital admission staff clarified that if she was dying we would be able to spend time with her.  Same end-of-life policies with the two ALF’s we dealt with during COVID.

    While she was so ill in the hospital my mother told us that she really really wants to live to see her grandchildren get married some day, so we honored that and didn’t move her to palliative care, and now surprisingly she is well enough that she lives in an ALF near me and navigates on her own with a walker to all meals.  She had given up eating when she was isolated before Sept 10 and would certainly  have died in the hospital without my siblings and me sitting by her bedside the few hours a day once we were allowed, though, and it’s unconscionable that so many places around the country allowed lonely, frightened elderly people to die without any family present.

    • #4
  5. Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… Member
    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio…
    @ArizonaPatriot

    Doc, this confidentiality regime seems to have started with HIPAA in 1996.  Does this sound correct to you?

    If so, what motivated the adoption of the HIPAA rules?

    My recollection was that AIDS played a major role, but I’m not sure about this.

    • #5
  6. Captain French Moderator
    Captain French
    @AlFrench

    Dr. Bastiat: And then ten years ago, if you walked up to the front desk to ask if your friend was in the hospital, they would tell you that they were not allowed to release that information.

    Possibly unintended consequences of HIPPA. When you write a massive and massively complex law to control what people do, people get controlled in ways you might not have thought of. See also Obamacare. 

    • #6
  7. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    Doc, this confidentiality regime seems to have started with HIPAA in 1996. Does this sound correct to you?

    If so, what motivated the adoption of the HIPAA rules?

    My recollection was that AIDS played a major role, but I’m not sure about this.

    Before reading comments, that was my instinct. Medical privacy correlates heavily with the demand to “not judge” because I make questionable lifestyle choices.

    The privacy litigated in HIPAA is now embedded culturally. People are very private with illness and need. The assumption seems to be helping hands are meddling busy bodies intent on judgemental gossip.

    • #7
  8. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    Stina (View Comment):

    Jerry Giordano (Arizona Patrio… (View Comment):

    Doc, this confidentiality regime seems to have started with HIPAA in 1996. Does this sound correct to you?

    If so, what motivated the adoption of the HIPAA rules?

    My recollection was that AIDS played a major role, but I’m not sure about this.

    Before reading comments, that was my instinct. Medical privacy correlates heavily with the demand to “not judge” because I make questionable lifestyle choices.

    The privacy litigated in HIPAA is now embedded culturally. People are very private with illness and need. The assumption seems to be helping hands are meddling busy bodies intent on judgemental gossip.

    As I remember it (and with some considerable amount of work I could possibly recover conversations about it) there was a growing concern with keeping our health information private from the government.  Donna Shalala decided the problem needed to be addressed:  In the name of privacy, keep people from seeing what information the government has on them.  And then we ended up with HIPAA, which has some elements of that.

    I do remember one left-Republican admitting that my prediction was correct about where this issue of privacy was taking us.

    • #8
  9. CACrabtree Coolidge
    CACrabtree
    @CACrabtree

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    When we need each other more than ever, too many want to splinter us apart. It is so sad.

    Exactly what I was thinking.  I would never want any contact info in my obit because of the sickos lurking everywhere.  For example, I’m sure that some of them, upon reading that I was a Vietnam Vet, would be responding with something like, “The baby-killing tool of the imperialist war machine is finally rotting in h*ll”.  Today’s Leftists are clever like that; and they think they are actually intelligent…

    • #9
  10. Jim McConnell Member
    Jim McConnell
    @JimMcConnell

    CACrabtree (View Comment):

    Susan Quinn (View Comment):

    When we need each other more than ever, too many want to splinter us apart. It is so sad.

    Exactly what I was thinking. I would never want any contact info in my obit because of the sickos lurking everywhere. For example, I’m sure that some of them, upon reading that I was a Vietnam Vet, would be responding with something like, “The baby-killing tool of the imperialist war machine is finally rotting in h*ll”. Today’s Leftists are clever like that; and they think they are actually intelligent…

    If I recall correctly, before the HIPAA requirements regarding privacy it was common for burglars to read reports of hospitalizations to learn the addresses of potential victims; so some good may have come of the Act.

    • #10
  11. Chuck Thatcher
    Chuck
    @Chuckles

    Dr. Bastiat: I miss America.

    Here’s the fact:  There are Americans, and real Americans.  You, doc, are one of the latter few and I commend you.

     

    • #11
  12. Stad Coolidge
    Stad
    @Stad

    The Other Diane (View Comment):
    it’s unconscionable that so many places around the country allowed lonely, frightened elderly people to die without any family present.

    I’d love to see class-action lawsuits in each state that prohibited visiting dying relatives, just to see how they are decided . . .

    • #12
  13. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    The Reticulator (View Comment):
    there was a growing concern with keeping our health information private from the government.

    So two things:

    1) Since HIPAA, how much has agitation for socialized health care increased?

    2) If AIDS was the predominant privacy issue that influenced HIPAA, how does the set logistics workout between those concerned about AIDS privacy and those wanting socialized Health care? I’m guessing roughly the same.

    My conclusion from these two things (in rough agreement with you) is that those who want socialized healthcare do not want those footing their bill to deny them for lifestyles that increase their risk of certain very costly diseases. Still boils down to “don’t judge me.” Just need to subsidize the consequences for them.

    Freedom from boundaries, freedom from consequences…

    • #13
  14. David Foster Member
    David Foster
    @DavidFoster

    “A society of tribes”….very much heading that way, I fear.  Politicians and media rarely refer to, say, “black people” or “gay people”, it’s almost always “the black community” or “the gay community.”  (They haven’t yet sprung “the female community” on us, but it’s probably coming)

    Here’s Rose Wilder Lane, on why centralized planning drives the assignment of people into groups:

    Nobody can plan the actions of even a thousand living persons, separately. Anyone attempting to control millions must divide them into classes, and make a plan applying to these classes. But these classes do not exist. No two persons are alike. No two are in the same circumstances; no two have the same abilities; beyond getting the barest necessities of life, no two have the same desires. Therefore the men who try to enforce, in real life, a planned economy that is their theory, come up against the infinite diversity of human beings. The most slavish multitude of men that was ever called “demos” or “labor” or “capital” or “agriculture” or “the masses,” actually are men; they are not sheep. Naturally, by their human nature, they escape in all directions from regulations applying to non-existent classes. It is necessary to increase the number of men who supervise their actions. Then (for officials are human, too) it is necessary that more men supervise the supervisors.

     

     

    • #14
  15. Shauna Hunt Coolidge
    Shauna Hunt
    @ShaunaHunt

    I’m seeing the light. We attended regular church meetings yesterday. Some of us were masked, others weren’t. We have been told by our leaders not to judge each other for our decisions. There was lots of giddiness and hugging going on.

    Orem City is going ahead with their community celebration this year. I’m not giving up. I know there are good days ahead. 

    • #15
  16. Hammer, The (Ryan M) Member
    Hammer, The (Ryan M)
    @RyanM

    Well observed and stated.  I could not agree more.

    • #16
  17. Hammer, The (Ryan M) Member
    Hammer, The (Ryan M)
    @RyanM

    David Foster (View Comment):

    “A society of tribes”….very much heading that way, I fear. Politicians and media rarely refer to, say, “black people” or “gay people”, it’s almost always “the black community” or “the gay community.” (They haven’t yet sprung “the female community” on us, but it’s probably coming)

    Here’s Rose Wilder Lane, on why centralized planning drives the assignment of people into groups:

    Nobody can plan the actions of even a thousand living persons, separately. Anyone attempting to control millions must divide them into classes, and make a plan applying to these classes. But these classes do not exist. No two persons are alike. No two are in the same circumstances; no two have the same abilities; beyond getting the barest necessities of life, no two have the same desires. Therefore the men who try to enforce, in real life, a planned economy that is their theory, come up against the infinite diversity of human beings. The most slavish multitude of men that was ever called “demos” or “labor” or “capital” or “agriculture” or “the masses,” actually are men; they are not sheep. Naturally, by their human nature, they escape in all directions from regulations applying to non-existent classes. It is necessary to increase the number of men who supervise their actions. Then (for officials are human, too) it is necessary that more men supervise the supervisors.

    What a fantastic quote. Thank you for including a link.

    • #17
  18. Full Size Tabby Member
    Full Size Tabby
    @FullSizeTabby

    David Foster (View Comment):

    “A society of tribes”….very much heading that way, I fear. Politicians and media rarely refer to, say, “black people” or “gay people”, it’s almost always “the black community” or “the gay community.” (They haven’t yet sprung “the female community” on us, but it’s probably coming)

    Here’s Rose Wilder Lane, on why centralized planning drives the assignment of people into groups:

    Nobody can plan the actions of even a thousand living persons, separately. Anyone attempting to control millions must divide them into classes, and make a plan applying to these classes. But these classes do not exist. No two persons are alike. No two are in the same circumstances; no two have the same abilities; beyond getting the barest necessities of life, no two have the same desires. Therefore the men who try to enforce, in real life, a planned economy that is their theory, come up against the infinite diversity of human beings. The most slavish multitude of men that was ever called “demos” or “labor” or “capital” or “agriculture” or “the masses,” actually are men; they are not sheep. Naturally, by their human nature, they escape in all directions from regulations applying to non-existent classes. It is necessary to increase the number of men who supervise their actions. Then (for officials are human, too) it is necessary that more men supervise the supervisors.

     

     

    Yes. The more we try to have political solutions the more we have to divide people into groups. 

    • #18
  19. Full Size Tabby Member
    Full Size Tabby
    @FullSizeTabby

    The increase in living life “on-line” to the exclusion of life in the physical realm is also contributing to tribalization. 

    Being able to connect on-line with like-minded people, or people with similar interests across wide geographic separation has many benefits. But, it carries the risk that we end up interacting only with like-minded people or people with similar interests. Then we risk discounting or even disparaging the value of people who are not like-minded or who have different interests or priorities.

    For several years we have seen glimpses of the potential problems with on-line life leading to isolation and tribalization. But in the last 15 months we have seen it demonstrated in high visibility as on-line life became the norm and the people who wield political and social power told us life in the physical realm was deadly and we should avoid it at all costs. 

    • #19
  20. David Foster Member
    David Foster
    @DavidFoster

    Full Size Tabby (View Comment):
    Being able to connect on-line with like-minded people, or people with similar interests across wide geographic separation has many benefits. But, it carries the risk that we end up interacting only with like-minded people or people with similar interests.

    G K Chesterton:

    The man who lives in a small community lives in a much larger world. He knows much more of the fierce varieties and uncompromising divergences of men. The reason is obvious. In a large community we can choose our companions. In a small community our companions are chosen for us. Thus in all extensive and highly civilized societies groups come into existence founded upon what is called sympathy, and shut out the real world more sharply than the gates of a monastery. There is nothing really narrow about the clan; the thing that is really narrow is the clique….The men of the clique live together because they have the same kind of soul, and their narrowness is a narrowness of spiritual coherence and contentment like that which exists in hell.

     

    • #20
  21. Stina Member
    Stina
    @CM

    David Foster (View Comment):

    Full Size Tabby (View Comment):
    Being able to connect on-line with like-minded people, or people with similar interests across wide geographic separation has many benefits. But, it carries the risk that we end up interacting only with like-minded people or people with similar interests.

    G K Chesterton:

    The man who lives in a small community lives in a much larger world. He knows much more of the fierce varieties and uncompromising divergences of men. The reason is obvious. In a large community we can choose our companions. In a small community our companions are chosen for us. Thus in all extensive and highly civilized societies groups come into existence founded upon what is called sympathy, and shut out the real world more sharply than the gates of a monastery. There is nothing really narrow about the clan; the thing that is really narrow is the clique….The men of the clique live together because they have the same kind of soul, and their narrowness is a narrowness of spiritual coherence and contentment like that which exists in hell.

     

    The difference between mega churches and small churches…

    • #21
  22. CACrabtree Coolidge
    CACrabtree
    @CACrabtree

    As usual, Ayaan Hirsi Ali has some interesting thoughts on the subject.  It’s getting pretty d*mn bad when similarities between the U.S. and Somalia can be seen.

    https://nypost.com/2021/05/11/i-saw-tribalism-rip-a-country-apart-and-now-its-happening-here/

    • #22
  23. The Reticulator Member
    The Reticulator
    @TheReticulator

    While the points made in the OP are good ones, this kind of grouping is people is very different from tribalism, which is too important a concept to be used inaccurately.   

    • #23
  24. Ammo.com Member
    Ammo.com
    @ammodotcom

    Stad (View Comment):

    Dr. Bastiat: And now, if a wife goes to visit her dying husband, they won’t let her in the door because of COVID. And he dies alone.

    As I’ve said before, this is the most cruel COVID restriction. Weddings can be rescheduled, same with reunions – but death? Oh no . . .

    Pretending such cruelty is necessary serves the purpose of inflating COVID’s severity.

    • #24