Early in “The Hound of the Baskervilles,” Dr. John Watson returns to the apartment at Baker Street he shares with his friend Sherlock Holmes after a day out. Holmes, having just consumed “two large pots of coffee and an incredible amount of tobacco,” instantly determines, to Watson’s surprise, that Watson had spent all day at the club. Listing the evidence that led him to this conclusion, he asks, “Is it not obvious? …The world is full of obvious things which nobody by any chance ever observes.”
Holmes’s rejoinder could be used for any number of observations about the COVID-19 pandemic. For months we’ve known the virus doesn’t spread through surface contact or asymptomatically. We’ve also learned of the inefficacy of population-level mask-wearing — along with the many possible negative consequences — and that children are largely unharmed by the virus. People who are younger and generally healthy are extremely unlikely to die, or, if they do contract the virus, rarely have symptoms warranting hospitalization.
All of these things are now verifiable with data. But did we need data as much as we needed — and still need — to simply observe the world around us? All the data in the world won’t convince us to stop panicking if our eyes are still closed to the reality outside our window. One could have gleaned most of the above from simply paying attention to one’s local community over several weeks last summer — no scientific expertise required.
Such scientific “experts” were recently cited by The New York Times losing their minds over the fact many Americans are still hesitant to get a COVID-19 vaccine. Because of these deplorable anti-vaxxers, they tell us, we might never reach herd immunity.1
Control the Masses
Never mind that, if COVID-19 spreads as easily as they say it does, it will still spread through the unvaccinated population, likely leading to natural herd immunity. No, forget about thinking rationally about this virus, which is somehow magically different than every other virus humanity has ever encountered. Reason would interfere with panic, which has become a convenient tool for the ruling class to control the masses.2
Indeed, in my home state of Michigan, orders to mask up and social distance are still on the books via two agency orders. The first, from the Department of Health and Human Services, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer promises to rescind once the state reaches 70 percent of residents vaccinated.3
Her “Vacc to Normal” plan pressures all Michiganders, regardless of risk and personal health, to line up for an injection. Yet it will be all too easy for Whitmer to renege on the rescission, given the “exceptions” language in her promise.
The second, an emergency order via the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration, is set to expire in October, but the Whitmer administration seeks to make a version of the rules permanent through a notice-and-comment administrative process. With little to stand in Whitmer’s way, Michigan is likely to be one of few states stuck with long-term COVID-19 rules.4 See pdf end of post.
Secular Religion of Silliness
Instead of acknowledging the reality that the pandemic response is harming Michiganders more than the pandemic itself, Whitmer continues to obsess over case numbers, taking her cues from U.S. Centers for Disease Control bureaucrats.
Whitmer and the ruling class can get away with using clever schemes and burdensome bureaucratic rules to prevent us from living normally because too many Americans are still closing their eyes to reality. The data is clear enough: the global infection fatality rate is only about 0.15 percent — hardly a number worth upending social norms over. This means most of us are likely several people removed from an actual COVID-19 casualty. Yet fear continues to supplant common sense. See pdt end of post.
For some, it’s not just fear, but a secular religion of silliness. After months of inexplicably arguing the opposite, the CDC in its most recent guidance now suddenly tells fully vaccinated Americans to take off their masks. Yet many vaccinated people, like Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, refuse to set aside their Masktopia because “that’s smart.” 5
One’s surrounding community
So, while the rejection of reality continues, people’s ability to perceive true reality often depends on one’s surrounding community. Visit the suburbs of Detroit in Wayne County, and you’ll find everyone masked-up and dutifully social distancing, with state restrictions strictly enforced by businesses. But visit Hillsdale County, where I live, and you might think you’re in a different country.
Only a handful of local businesses in town are known for strictly enforcing COVID-19-era protocols on customers. A majority of people are maskless, few pay attention to the distancing markings on the floor, and yes, some folks even pass shopping carts to each other in the parking lot without sanitizing them.
According to state data, despite the differences in practice, there’s virtually no statistical gulf in cases and fatality rate between Wayne and Hillsdale. In places like Detroit, fear and the controlling arm of the state prevent people from recognizing truths that lie in plain sight. But there are corners of sanity, like Hillsdale, where everybody seems to be a Sherlock Holmes: they observe the obvious things in their world and react accordingly.6
It’s not that people in places like Hillsdale are “denialists” about COVID-19, as the LA Times claims. Many of us have contracted it, and we’ve lost elderly members of our community. If we’re denying anything, it’s that the tyrant in Lansing or the “experts” in Washington have a firmer grip on reality than we do.7
Panic Porn Headlines
Because of misrepresented truths from the Whitmers and Anthony Faucis of the world — along with panic porn headlines and politically charged “studies” — many Americans are stuck outside reality. For many, the deep roots of psychosis make escaping the ecosystem of lies nearly impossible. Facts and statistics are unlikely to change anyone’s mind at this point, and arguing about science is no longer productive.8
But residents of sane America know children in their community aren’t getting sick from COVID-19. It’s plain to them their healthy asymptomatic neighbors aren’t secretly spreading disease. They recognize the few people they know who were hospitalized with COVID-19 are advanced in age or have significant pre-existing health conditions.
They remember vaccines usually take years of testing before they’re marketed to the masses, so for safety’s sake, they only consider getting this emergency-approved one if they fall into a high-risk category. They can’t understand why the ruling class tells us it’s “healthy” to mask up because they know what’s genuinely healthy is to eat right, exercise, and get fresh air and sunshine.
Instead of trusting the strangely unscientific science, they trust their own observations and common sense.
1.Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration – General Rules – Emergency Rules – Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
2.Reconciling estimates of global spread and infection fatality rates of COVID- 19: An overview of systematic evaluations