"it's not about you, it's about me!"
how false ascription of "your mask/vaccine/distancing protects me" inverted the morality of covid and broke the world.
“your mask protects me!”
“you need to get vaccinated to stop the spread and make society safe!”
“stay home, save lives!”
these were the endless refrains of the moralizing mandates of coviddom.
this was grade A prime propaganda whose purpose was simple:
to invert the morality of personal health choices and induce people to do things that they did not believe to serve their best interest by framing them as the collective good and therefore an ethical duty.
it’s not about you. making your own cost benefit decision is selfish and anti-social. it’s potent stuff. if there were a nobel prize for propaganda, this would be a shoe in.
tellingly, much of this framing finds its roots in behavioral economics (BE) pioneered by folks like khaneman and thaler for which multiple nobels were, in fact, awarded. it’s about nudge and prospect theory and anchoring bias. this precise branch of economics was weaponized during covid. the UK had a whole group of BE’s dedicated to it, many of whom are now disgusted with what happened. given the US purchase of grass roots psyoppery, it’s difficult to imagine that we did not have the same.
the problem is that it was all unmitigated bunk. it was fabrication, assumption, and outright lies told because we “hoped it was true” to quote chief disaster architect deborah birx.
they flat out told you that you jab protects everyone, stops transmission, and “makes you a dead end for the virus.” it was the centerpiece of the pitch. and contrary to current claims, we have receipts on this that look like they came from the supermarket check out before thanksgiving dinner.
but this was entirely made up.
watch the video above as member of euro parliament rob roos questions a pfizer director on this topic.
she (the director) flat out tells us that this fact was not in evidence when the vaccines were released because they were in a hurry and “moving at the speed of science.”
this entirely erroneous assumption about the disease sterilizing nature of these products was just accepted and promulgated uncritically. the folks that should have known better said nothing and the folks who relied on them ran riot on a moral crusade rooted in false premises. then, when they rapidly realized how wrong they were, they did not recant but pivoted to “it was never supposed to be that, it’s supposed to prevent severity” (also an increasingly iffy claim especially when you weight outcomes for the greater chance of contracting and therefore spreading covid) and therefore save hospital capacity that was never taxed in nearly all locations outside a few perennial basket cases like italy and NYC.
this was the moment they went from being victims of untruth to co-conspirators in its contagion.
for a politician to be fooled by a health official is not terribly surprising. they are not subject matter experts. but to have such a big, cornerstone claim be immediately revealed to be not only false but likely inverted as the vaccinated turned into superspreaders and vaccine evasion incubators, well, that should have caused pause.
the fact that even after it was clear that “your vaccine does not protect me and might well be putting me at risk” these agents and agencies went full bore on mandates to “stop the spread and protect the public” as though this was not a choice you could make for yourself but a choice you needed to be forced to make to “protect the vulnerable” and somehow put society on a standing of collective guilt and responsibility for the most anxious and at risk and unable to make choices out of self interest was ethical fraud.
even in the case of a mitigation that works as advertised, such mandates constitute a dangerous departure from the idea of individual agency and rights, but in the case of one that not only does not protect others but may actually put them at greater risk in both the short and especially the long run, then forcing a product with negative expected personal value upon a society becomes an abomination, especially if you then go to great lengths to deny, hide, or fail to collect the side effect data.
it is pure and simply reprehensible behavior and those who did it are either morally repugnant if they did it knowingly or so dangerously incompetent as to have no business wielding such power if they did it sans comprehension.
masks were much the same.
masks never worked, were known not to work, and yet became the go to pivot because they were visible, lower cost than lockdowns, and got framed as a social obligation.
“your mask protects me” made for great media, but it was the antithesis of science.
the data could not be more clear.
“2 weeks to flatten the curve” was just as bad.
more social duty framing, hysterical fear mongering, and another core of pure pseudoscientific twaddle.
the evidence of failure was near instant and the fact that it would fail was known and knowable.
but the messaging was an absolutely relentless, hectoring assault.
“it’s your job to obey and save us!” then morphed into “this failed because you did not obey hard enough!”
this is what abusive relationships look like.
the whole thing got so surreal that honestly i’m not even sure if this is real or parody. (score one for poe)
and again, “2 weeks to flatten the curve” was brilliant propaganda. it’s vintage behavioral economics. birx has outright admitted that she always intended it to be longer. she just needed to get the ball rolling. you start with a small seeming ask. just 2 weeks. then, when it ends, you extend and claim “just a bit more. you’ve already sacrificed, let’s be sure it’s worth it!” this is what economists call a “sunk cost fallacy.”
you start to ascribe value to past sacrifice or expenditure and so the more you spend, the more you want to spend in the future to “make it worth it.” it’s one of the first traits you need to beat out of an investor. throwing good money after bad is the road to bankruptcy. well, your life and liberty work the same way. how did you like the lesson?
this whole barrage was calculated. whether it was planful or emerged from the infallible A/B message testing crucible of social media or whatever combination of the two, it worked.
they inverted morality and took away your right to make the choices that suited you by subsuming them into a notion of collective good underpinned by dodgy, self serving, and often bespoke scientific nonsense.
now rotate the shape in your head.
where else might they be doing this to you?
this is the new normal.
from climate change to preferential social justice policy to safety policies to education to your recreational choices, it’s all “do not do what you want, do as society needs” where that need just happens to always (conveniently) be known to (and only to) the anointed philosopher royals of expertdom.
there is no morality or science here. it’s just self serving storytime weaponizing tall tales and social pressure to manipulate you away from making good choices.
this trend is well past its sell by date and fully rancid.
but now you know how the trick is done.
don’t be fooled again.