Pie ponders etc… The title message or variations thereof are something often seen these days on lefty twitter. Then again they always are, but these days just a tad more. It is, off course, linked to the SARS-CoV-2 whatever. This has proven, once and for all time, libertarianism wrong.
How lucky, then, that this special event supports one’s hobbyhorse one has been riding for 30 years. This proves more government is needed, just like every single thing that happened ever proved more government is necessary.
Has it though? Has it really? Is this what covid did? You will not be surprised that I think not. For me all it did, as I may have mentioned, is strengthen even more, if possible, the idea that there is no room to communicate between people of differing concepts of life. It is hard to have a discussion with the left, mainly because we cannot first establish some simple facts of reality as a starting point. Reality is, off coursed, racist, sexist and transphobic. Nothing is objective and all that.
Let’s say we have two glasses of beer. We can debate if beer 1 is better than beer2 as long as we can agree, at least, we are looking at two glass of beer. But if someone sees a glass of beer and someone else sees the same object a decorative candle, there is no debate to be had.
But let us analyze things a bit. Why is libertarianism crushed? Because, they will say, government was essential in handling the pandemic. This is, off course, not such a hard fact as it may seem and can be considered at least debatable. But even assuming, for the sake of argument, that it is not debatable, it does not prove at all what they claim it proves.
I have seen in the past, among leftists wanting huge government intervention, claims such as measure X was applied during WWI or WWII and so it works. This is a ridiculous claim. Many things happened in the great wars. But life in general was massively disrupted and things were pretty bad. Living standards were low, most things rationed and so on. Some measure implemented were accepted in those times as necessary, whether they were or not. No one can claim everything government did during the wars was good. The fact that those measures would apply or be accepted during peace is ridiculous. If blinds on all windows work during the Blitz, they don’t do much in peacetime, except hide your fetish from you neighbor, though your kink may be that the neighbors know your fetish.
Similarly, things government does during a pandemic have no bearing on what it should do when there isn’t one. Some things necessary for short term survival in the presence of a, pardon the phrase, “clear and present danger” are not good for long term thriving, especially if that danger is not there.
Many of the things the left wants are not good even now. Why would anyone think nationalizing things increases production? When history has shown quite the opposite, and in less stressful times. European countries nationalized plenty after World War 2, probably by the stupid thinking that government involvement in production “worked” during the war. It was an unmitigated disaster. That is, if you can look at history and see reality.
An analogy for this, seen online somewhere, is that if during a critical event in a hospital you need a defibrillator, that does not mean using one every morning as a healthy person is good. A random dose of chemotherapy for a cancer free patient would probably greatly harm said patient. So no, the need, if any, of government intervention during war or pandemic does not, in any way, imply the need of government intervention during normal times.
But I will go further. For me, the virus proves wrong most of the left’s claims. This was, for all intents and purposes, a massive failure of government and experts. And trust in experts is one of the main conceits of the left. Well the experts failed. Miserably. Be it European Union agencies, US Surgeon General, World Health Organization and most national government agencies. All these institutions, one month before things started to go sideways, were adamant in claiming there was no risk (there was in fact), in was not human to human transmissible (ehm), there will be no pandemic (spoiler alert…) masks are no good (while not a panacea, they definitely help), travel restrictions are unwarranted, etc etc etc. A non-failure of government would have been preventing the pandemic from happening, given there was advanced warning. But nooo, that would have been RACIST. Instead of doing right by their citizens, every agency just repeated Chinese Communist Party propaganda. And all the press did the same. This is not a discussion on how bad the virus is. But, given the measures governments took in the end, it is clear the governments think it is bad. And as such, the measures come too late. And in the end, women and minorities hardest hit.
Every one of the quality socialized healthcare systems was unprepared and overwhelmed, although the great boogieman, the profit motive, was absent. Where were the experts then?
I will go a step further. This proved to me that the government of the world are too preoccupied with things that should not be, in a free society, under the purview of government, in order to do what, in any non-anarchy, is the core function of government: protecting residents and their rights. If they are too big, too far extended, they can no longer focus on what they should do. Money is wasted massively on everything government should not do, and, suddenly, there is not enough left for the few things government should have a role in. But this is on purpose, to grow government. That is why, whenever budgets are reduced, the actual important things are the first to go. The graft remains untouched.
Whatever your view of the virus, it is a massive clusterfuck. And it was mostly under the watchful eyes of governments spending trillions in total, north of 40% of GDP. BUT THEY ARE UNDERFUNDED!!!! How exactly is beyond me. But I believe this is the main argument of the left right now. No matter how much money government gets, if it fails it is underfunded. What would be well funded? Always more. It is a tidy little argument. It cannot fail. Except when communism, which is the final end of this kind of thinking, come. Ah, but that is never real communism. It never is.