30 April 2020

Covid-19 The Worst Case Political Reaction

A Zero State document: It appears that due to the existing reaction to the Covid-19 pandemic we are already heading into a new Global Depression comparable to the 1930s. But how bad could it really become, if steps are not taken now to defuse the situation? I am going to use the situation in the UK as an example, but it is applicable almost everywhere to a lesser or greater extent. Well, this depends on a number of factors which are at present unknown. For example, is Covid here to stay as an annual “super-flu”? Will an effective vaccine be created in the near future, or ever? Will people build immunity? If the answer to those is “yes” “no” and “no” we can expect turmoil whose comparison with Germany in the 1920s/30s will not be an exaggeration. The rumblings can already be felt as it is becoming obvious that susceptibility to the disease is genetically linked and dark skinned ethnic minorities in the West are making up a disproportion percentage of the casualties. At this point we will have a confluence of two trends — authoritarian lockdown “for your own good”, and the “blame game”. It is already being (more than merely) suggested by government that the social distancing measures we are experiencing could be put in place in perpetuity. What would this mean? To start with, nobody being able to go into a public space without a face mask. Gatherings of more than a handful of people banned, which means no crowded pubs, restaurants, sporting events or mass demonstrations in the streets. Paradoxically, the facemask law would render facial recognition tech used by the police obsolete, especially as people “abused” the order by going for full face coverings burqa style. What would the government do — demand ID be printed on everyone’s mask like a license plate on cars? Then there will be a rash of phone tracking apps which are already in the works as a matter of mass surveillance, again “for your own good”. What happens to people who have no phone, or do not turn them on? Next up will be the collapse of the tourist industry, which has already happened. If Covid is here to stay, tourism is dead. Within Britain there are travel restrictions. Even when not official, small communities have imposed their own by blocking roads against “outsiders” or actually attacking them or their property. This is just a model of the international version where for example the free travel of the EU’s Schengen Area is put on permanent hold, and/or people are put into quarantine whenever they arrive from an international destination. In effect, the freedom to travel will be severely curtailed. All these kinds of measures have already been seized upon by would-be authoritarian governments to grab more power an impose ever greater limits on freedom, from Hong Kong to Turkey to Hungary. There is no greater mantra than “public safety” when it comes to taking away the freedom of people, often not merely with acquiescence, but active approval. In the UK we have numerous examples of public spirited snitches ratting out those who go outside for too long to the police. And a police force seemingly gone mad with petty power as they try to stop people sitting on the grass, or even sunbathing in their own gardens. Fear of a less than 1% chance of dying is a real motivator it seems when it comes to keeping the sheep in line. [And yes, I am contemptuous of such people]. Tellingly the only serious resistance has been in the USA. Perhaps the public owning hundreds of millions of guns has gone some way towards limiting the over-reaction of the local police, not to mention government. However, now we come to something that will exacerbate and polarize the situation. Susceptibility to the virus appears to be genetically linked, with dark skinned ethnic minorities in the West being disproportionately affected. This will have two effects. The first is that for reasons of public health, everyone in a public facing job would need a genetic test. If they are one of the susceptible people — job gone. So an immediate two tier society based on genetics, in addition to the usual racism. This would result in in immediate and disproportionate increase in unemployment among said minorities, all in a global depression. The second effect would be linked to the blame game. What appears to be the actual case right now is that the virus came from bats via some other animal intermediary in a “wet market” in Wuhan, China. The fact that these markets exist at all is an indictment of the Chinese government, but worse is that fact that they tried to cover up the outbreak by arresting doctors who warned the world what was happening. Naturally, everyone is rather angry with China for crashing the global economy through incompetence, but it doesn’t stop there. It appears that Chinese news agencies have accused the USA of being behind the virus, to somehow hurt or discredit China in order to deflect the blame and muddy the waters. This fuels a blame game, especially once the usual conspiracy nuts have jumped on board. So on one hand we get counter claims that the virus escaped from a Chinese laboratory, or worse, that it is a deliberate attack on the West by an engineered bioweapon. On the other, we get the crazies in the UK linking the viral outbreak with the rollout of 5G mobile phone technology, because… some shit or other. And the gullible peasants start burning down phone masts. Meanwhile, on the Indian subcontinent Hindus and Muslims start blaming each other for the spread of the disease. This is where we have the genetic dimension waiting to be added to the mix. In Conspiracy World nothing happens by accident. A virus that targets dark skinned people? You know where this is going. So who is behind it? Well, top of every nut’s hate list is Bill Gates, doing evil vaccinations etc. Yes, in Conspiracy World you just throw in more and more insanity — anti-vaxxers, chemtrails, New World Order, Illuminati and that all time favorite, The Jews. So, in the Middle East we see Israel being able to bring the disease under some degree of control, while elsewhere it closes Mecca and burns through Iran. Finally, it all makes sense… Oh… I forgot the Environmentalists. I am sure they too will come in for the blame as well, especially if they start crowing about how good all this is for the planet and reveling in the misery of ordinary people. Greta Thunberg will be joining Bill Gates on the list. All this would be quite bad under normal circumstances but it will be set against a global depression and mass unemployment. Scapegoats will be found via the usual xenophobia, and politicians will come under extreme pressure to enact extreme measures. Those who refuse to do so are likely to be replaced at the polls. The result will be the end of globalization, the free movement of people and capital and international supply chains will be shortened, with nationalism rising dramatically. Nations that blame each other, like India and Pakistan, will become more extreme and more adversarial. Worst case, war. For China, it will be the end of their massively successful decades of growth and the internal tensions will rise leading to unrest. But then, they will hardly be alone in that boat. Elsewhere, Arab Spring 2.0 and wars. Europe in the form of the EU will also take a far harder line against illegal immigration. The problem with fear, which we are witnessing in the UK, is that once the public has been whipped into a panic by the government and mass media it just cannot be turned off again like a tap. Indeed, it takes on a life of its own. This is probably true worldwide. So how do we escape all this? Well, we better just pray that a vaccine works, or herd immunity is a thing. Because, otherwise… Postscript: 1.6 Billion people will lose their livelihoods according to UN estimates. That is one fifth of Humanity instantly turned into angry political radicals with nothing to lose.


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