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Progressivism, the shield against Covid

This tweet by “the Rabbit Hole” is possibly the most damning, and the funniest, single image of media double standards I have ever seen:

In case someone else buys Twitter and it goes away, the image shows matched pairs of headlines from Vox, the Washington Post, Forbes, ABC News, the Insider, CNN, CNBC, the New York Times, the Verge and the AP. Every one of these outlets decided to run essentially the same pair of stories a few months apart. Taking but two examples,

The Insider said “Don’t blame Black Lives Matter protests for the spike in coronavirus cases across the US” and “The Capitol insurrection seems to have caused a superspreader event among lawmakers. Some Republicans refused to mask up.”

The Verge said, “Blaming protesters for COVID-19 spread ignores the bigger threats to health” and “COVID-19 cases in the Capitol are only the tip of the iceberg.”

And so on for the rest of them.

I can remember a time when if separate reports written by many different journalists in a whole bunch of famous newspapers and TV channels all said the same thing, it made me more likely to believe them.

24 comments to Progressivism, the shield against Covid

  • Tim Worstall

    “I can remember a time when if separate reports written by many different journalists in a whole bunch of famous newspapers and TV channels all said the same thing, it made me more likely to believe them.”

    Yes, isn’t that the ultimate tragedy in all of this. That the well is poisoned. I have a bit of work that involves regularly reading those sorts of sites looking for bias – bias and error that is, error caused by bias even. It’s not a pretty sight I tell you.

  • Fraser Orr

    But the claim in the tweet is entirely wrong. “No amount of political doublespeak can make this poof away.” This is plainly not true. The LARGE majority of Americans — and I imagine Brits too, though I don’t know — totally swallow the whole government narrative hook, line and sinker. In fact they think anyone who doesn’t is a crazy conspiracy nut.

    And that is the real tragedy. As I have said before, the problem in the west is not the politicians or the institutions, it is that the people are too stupid to think for themselves, to vote for their own interests, to even advocate for their own interests out of a self loathing hatred of their own imagined biases and need to virtue signal.

    And BTW, I am offended by the micro-agression. It is “person identifying as cis-gendered same sex attracted” not “poof”. Argh, this place is filled with hate speech and needs to be shut down. I joke of course, but the crazy truth is that a significant number of people would read this tweet and fixate on that rather than the substantive content, which is to say, they have lost their f-ing minds.

  • Paul Marks

    Yes Natalie Solent and yes Tim Worstall – the media lied about Covid, as did governments, as did the medical establishment – both government and Corporate.

    They lied about the origins of Covid – denying that it came from the Chinese lab funded by Tony Fauci (American bureaucracy) and Peter Daszak (Eco Health Alliance – and World Health Organisation).

    They lied about there being no Early Treatment – there is, most of the people could-have-been-saved.

    They lied about the lockdowns – pretending that the lockdowns were a good idea (the lockdowns have ruined us – and I strongly suspect that this was the real reason for the lockdowns), and they lied about the cloth masks.

    And they have lied about the “safe and effective” injections.

    By the way – I was just remined that the Ukraine had perhaps the lowest vaccination rate in Europe, even before the Russian invasion.

    By not pushing the injections as much as other governments have done President Zelensky may, intentionally or not, saved a lot of lives.

  • Paul Marks

    Frasor Orr – I do not fully agree, although you have a point.

    For example, when the American “health” officials (that gang of half baked Frankfurt School Marxists) declared, with a state face, that one should not gather apart-from for BLM Marxist riots, to loot, burn and murder, because “racism is a public health emergency” – most people, even many leftists, knew the American “health” officials and “mainstream” media were lying, evil, scum.

    That is why they have to rig elections – if most people believed them, they would not have to rig elections.

    By the way (yet again) to the people reading this and saying to themselves “there was no Covid lockdown in Russia” – yes-there-was, and there were toxic injections as well.

    Although Russians treated what their government said with healthy contempt.

    Indeed it is a joke in Russia that the only person to believe that the injections were “safe and effective” was Mr Putin.

  • lucklucky

    There is also the Wall Street Journal.

  • Lee Moore

    We occasionally discuss the left/commie/prog/hacktivist penchant for trying to adjust the political debate in their favour by changing the meaning of words. This is usually done by simply pretending that, say “leopard” refers to “The Animal Formerly Known as Kangaroo” rather than, well, leopards. So the semantic adjustment is always in the direction of untruth.

    I feel that the right/uncrazy/normy/unwoke/tediously-conventional/still-hinged community (“RUNUTS”) could usefully respond in kind, with a few adjustments of our own. But because we are tolerably honest folk, we should adjust in the direction of truth rather than untruth.

    And it seems to me that what has long been a prime candidate is the word “newspaper.” Would it not be more accurate to describe these things as “storypapers” ?

    This leaves open all possibilities. The story might be fun but false, completely made up, accidentally but earnestly wrong, dictated by an FBI appatchik, wall to wall opinion, or even mostly true. Whereas “newspaper” carries a quite inappropriate cachet of probity and accuracy.

    I feel that this would help the general public to avoid the trap into which Fraser says – quite correctly – that they keep falling.

  • bobby b

    Fraser Orr, the summary: MPAI.


    (“Most people are idiots.” Try living in Minnesota.)

  • Fan of Slackwire Clowns

    I can easily understand the level of dishonesty, and the credulity of so many people.

    My family could charitably be called “Working Class”. The lies we were told and believed … like a college education on its own guaranteed a good job …

    … we too many for me to swallow that load of BS I heard during Covid.

    I feel like the Italian in the film that spanned Mussolini and the Post-War listening to the French intellectual spouting politics at his dinner table, in his house.

    The Italian was quite rude to the Frenchman.

    But a new year, and time to not suffer fools nor give them the opportunity to waste my time.

  • Steven R

    We have over a century now of the Feds doing all kinds of underhanded, immoral, and downright illegal stuff and no one ever being held accountable for it. Their shenanigans and goings on concerning COVID is just another chapter in that book.

  • Fraser Orr

    @bobby b
    Fraser Orr, the summary: MPAI.

    They say the biggest argument against democracy is a five minute chat with the average voter. However, less rarely do we hear the complement: the biggest argument in favor of limits on power is a five minute chat with the average politician.

    Try living in Minnesota

    Who’d ever have thought that Minnesota, sensible, midwestern, salt-of-the-earth, from Nordic stock, anglo-saxon-work-ethic, Minnesota would the be birthplace of one of the greatest insanities to hit the US in our history.

  • James Strong

    What has happened in Minnesota?

  • Nemesis

    If our fellow man is really stupid – there is no hope. I’m inclined to believe that humans are programmed to look for ‘patterns’, a survival instinct inorder to make sense of their life and environment. Once a pattern emerges, we tend to see only things that fit the pattern and sometimes end up going down rabbit holes in a polarised debate. I see this happen even with the great and the good and lose their credibility.

  • JohnK


    I am reading “The Real Anthony Fauci” by Robert F Kennedy Jr (my Christmas present). It is quite the eye opener.

    You are quite right, it would seem, about the guilt of Dr Fauci for both the creation of Covid 19 and its untreated spread. You often say that cheap, early treatment with simple drugs could have saved 80% of those who died. This seems to be true.

    The whole Covid business (an appropriate term) is one of the biggest, and most unnecessary, disasters we have ever faced. Dr Fauci was the spider at the centre of the web. Ergo, he will never be punished.

  • Why am I the first one here (AFAICS) to point out that what ‘The Rabbit Hole’ meant to say was

    It is hard to overstate the levels of dishonesty we witnessed during Covid

    It was (and is) very easy to understate the levels of dishonesty we witnessed during Covid. Realising how deep The Rabbit Hole went (and still goes) – going so deep in one’s denunciation of it that one does not understate it – that was (and still is) hard.

    That’s part of the problem, of course.

  • GregWA

    Fraser Orr and bobby b: I don’t think most people are idiots although they are a substantial minority in the US and wherever the education establishment looks anything like the US. They CAN think for themselves, they’ve just not been trained to do that routinely. They’ve not been trained in what being a citizen is. They’ve not been educated regarding the value of the institutions they were handed by their parents. etc. They have not been taught that all government, all human organizations have corruption. Nature of the beast…and us.

    I think it boils down to poor education. Intentionally poor education as that has been the goal of the leftists running the Education Admin depts at all US universities.

    And there are a lot of idiots. The movie “Idiocracy” isn’t funny any more.

  • Fan of Slackwire Clowns


    The problem may be that people who are not idiots are too self-restrained, and maybe too busy with things they think are more important to correct the idiots.

    That people who are not idiots may have the resources to enact their own Benedictine Solution may also be the problem.

    How many people that could reasonably be called Elites found ways to skirt the Covid Restrictions? How many avoided the Vaccine and the Boosters and have kept quiet about it (and been able to)?

    Did not a disreputable person write about exactly this. He spoke of Fishtown.

    The residents of Fishtown (and some here are residents of Fishtown, or a town not far from there) need to reassert their own Dignity. Learn rather than be Educated.

  • Paul Marks

    JohnK – I do not believe that someone like Tony Fauci are born evil, although we all have evil within us (I certainly do), not even the education system (at least not when Tony Fauci was in school) makes them evil – it is the POWER.

    No one should have this level of power – unlimited and unaccountable. Over time it eats away at them – and someone like Tony Fauci has been in the system for many decades.

    He did not start off like this.

  • Kirk

    “He did not start off like this.”

    Fatuous and immaterial; he wound up “like this”. This implies an essential corruption of the soul. It’s like saying that there was never anything really wrong with Jeffrey Dahmer; it was all those temptingly curvaceous young men wandering the streets of Milwaukee that created the temptation he “gave in to” in order to slaughter them.

    I don’t care what he “started off as”. The fact that you’re using the fact that he was part of a system that “tempted him” into misconduct, as an excuse, a justification? WTF?

    This precise sentiment is why I’ve given up on Western Civ as a concept. The weak-minded among us are unable to recognize the reality of things, that men are fallible and must be held accountable when they do fail.

    You don’t have to be a saint not to fall into the temptations of power; you simply have to have the essential nature not to. Which Fauci obviously lacks.

    Yes, the system is flawed. However, the idea that Fauci was “eaten away at” is immeasurably more flawed. His essential nature was that he was amenable to corruption of the spirit, and that he was utterly incompetent to boot. That was visible as long ago as the AIDS epidemic, and I’m still in awe of the fact that this useless excresence retained any sort of position in governance.

    It’s not the fault of the system, however: It’s Fauci, pure and simple. He’d be a corrupt and incompetent POS if he’d only ever gotten to be a dogcatcher. The fact that he was never recognized as such and held accountable is yet another point of failure within the system, as well as proof the system itself is fundamentally flawed. The idea he “fell” into temptation? A laughable construction; he didn’t fall so much as he leapt into it all, embracing the opportunity to exert power for his own reward.

    You’re making excuses for monsters, here. The fact that they were not stopped by the system, anywhere along the line? It doesn’t change their essential intrinsic nature. Fauci would be what he is if he only ever worked down at the DMV as a clerk: A petty, power-hungry abusive little twat of a man, without redeeming features whatsoever.

  • JohnK


    I don’t think Paul is making excuses for Fauci. He may have been born an asshole, I don’t know. But no-one should be in post for decades. How did that happen? It is like J Edgar Hoover all over again.

  • Kirk

    Paul is blaming the system for leaving him in place, and “tempting” him. I’m blaming Fauci for being an intrinsically weak character that gave in to temptation and abused his power, enriching himself.

    I spent most of my adult life in the military. The hierarchy there affords all sorts of opportunities to abuse the power you’re granted in order to do your job, and relatively lax supervision in a lot of respects. I’ve observed many men who were “good men” when they didn’t have the power and authority vested in them by virtue of their position in the hierarchy and the Uniform Code of Military Justice, who turned out to be utter shitheels when it was entrusted to them. That isn’t condemnatory of the system; those powers and authorities are necessary and intrinsic to positions of authority within the system. When they are abused, that is instead a marker of the weak character of the men doing the abuse with them.

    It’s not the job; it’s not the CDC as an institution: It is Fauci. Period. Other men have held those jobs, and somehow refrained from abusing them. How is that? Was it because those were better men, or were the powers and authority not there when they had the positions?

    I’d agree that an institution can encourage misbehavior; that does not mean, in turn, that those who misbehave are not responsible for their misbehaviors.

    Which is the construct that Paul offers up, in lieu of holding creatures like Fauci to the standard that they should be held to.

  • no-one should be in post for decades. How did that happen? (JohnK, December 29, 2022 at 1:19 am)

    It happened because people are policy and the deep state has metastasized into selecting those suited to its policy of self-serving, and eliminating any who would be an obstacle. There is no contradiction in the fact that Fauci’s career is a spectacle of ‘failing upwards’. What we justly call failures, judging by the officially-stated aims, were not ‘failures’ by deep state standards.

    Fauci … may have been born an asshole, I don’t know.

    I believe in Fauci’s complete moral responsibility for all the evil he has done – so, in a sense, I don’t believe in his being born with the slightest inability to be better. I suggest he made his (im)moral choices early and stuck to them from choice. His decision in early 2020 (which apparently came as a bit of a surprise to some he’d funded) to be furious when they found clear evidence the ChiComCold came from the Wuhan lab work he’d funded to evade US law, and to demand this evidence be lost again immediately, followed consistently from the (lack-of-)character he’d built up over his lifetime.

    (FWIW, I discussed the metastasis a few months back here. Maintaining an alternative real-mission-focussed structure is also possible – I discussed a relevant example here.)

  • Paul Marks

    Kirk – you miss the point.

    It is not that Tony Fauci is a particularly bad man, how do you explain the fact (and it is a fact) that most Western nations have followed much the same policies (indeed some countries did this crazy and evil things BEFORE the United States did). No one should have this sort of power – the idea that the power is O.K. if it is in good hands is a fallacy.

    No one should have this power – it is not just “Fauci is a bad man” (although he is) the SYSTEM is wrong.

    Government must be limited in its powers – and it no longer is.

  • Kirk


    If you go back over the years and read what I’ve said with great consistency, it’s that I believe with utter faith and certainty that a (or, even the…) main reason we’re having problems is that we’ve invested all this power into these vast reef structures of bureaucracy and “organization”.

    You want to observe why that’s a bad idea? Look no further than NASA. Human beings are utter shiite at long-term organization, when we invest ourselves into these permanent institutional solutions. The institution represents a power source and a means of exerting that power; because of that, they attract the worst of us, who then become as Fauci. The creatures like Fauci aren’t even really understandable to many of us, because there’s no f*cking point to what they do and did. Did J. Edgar Hoover build a lasting dynasty of Hoovers, running the world behind the scenes? Nope; he had no kids, and left no real successor in place. It was all just personal aggrandizement and power-tripping; he did what he did ‘cos he could. Same syndrome with Fauci and his ilk.

    The system, if there was such a formal thing, should be weeding these people out and culling them from the bureaucracy. The fact that it does not speaks volumes as to the actual virtue of our systems, which aren’t either virtuous or at all systemic.

    I can’t think of a single institution that has ever stood the test of time. Not one. So, why are still building these things, and investing all this power in them, ready for abuse?

    Me? I’m for an ad-hocracy of shared values, based on the true inner civilized man. Who doesn’t get acknowledged very much, or even admitted to. It’s my contention that if you have to impose “civilization” from without, through institutions and social pressure? You’ve failed at the game of civilization.

    You may consider yourself a civilized people if you shipwreck a few hundred of your ilk onto the shores of some deserted island, leave them there alone, and then when you come back in a generation or two, you find the same things there that you find at home: Peace, amity, and civilized conduct. If it turns into a Lord of the Flies hellhole, you’ve still got a lot of work to do on your “civilization”. ‘Cos, it ain’t much of one.

    I had a thing said to me, and which I’d already figured out when my senior leaders told it to me: Discipline in the military does not consist of that which is done when the leadership is present and enforcing its will; a truly disciplined unit demonstrates that discipline in the utter absence of any leadership and supervision, by doing that which it is supposed to be doing without external guidance or coercion. Saw that more than a few times, and I even saw units that performed better once you pulled all the “leadership” out of the picture… Something that made me seriously question the value of a lot of what we “leaders” were doing. Self-motivated, self-directing soldiers are exponentially more effective and adaptable than lockstep drones operated by martinet “leaders” who’re more concerned with exercising their prerogatives and prestige.

    As in the service, so in civil life. If you need cops to enforce the law, you might want to work on other things, like asking why so many disobey those laws in the first place.

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