Warning: controversial content.
This is a rant about the human psyche, about herd behaviour and about a deep rooted fear for the unknown. Of course this blog article is about the corona virus, because everything is about the corona virus. Why not join the biggest media-snowball ever? (This is factually true: in human history there has never been more notifications in the media about one specific subject). In this essay the approach is not about the coronavirus itself, because statistically it is not at all relevant for a possible apocalypse, but rather on how people behave under the influence of fear. And what above all is interesting: that what is socially accepted can totally change from one moment to the other. That is what truly needs to be feared.
Okay, first the statistics. At the moment of writing there are 6.500 deaths and 80.000 recovered. This is a 7% death rate. What is remarkable is that from those 6.500 by far the biggest group are older people (80+) and people who already had an ailment. Adding up those people who are asymptomatic and the relative death rate goes down. Remarkable here again is that the chances that somebody dies with a good immune system is practically zero (https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/coronavirus-age-sex-demographics/). In other words, statistically this virus resembles the influenza strain quit a lot. And still, the reaction on this is one of immense proportions. How could that happen?
There is only one possible explanation: this virus is a media-virus. And everyone seems to be infected by it. If, for months on end, you read the news on a subject that intensifies exponentially (not the virus), watch video clips of people in septic shock, everywhere pops up self-proclaimed experts who predict problems of mythical proportions, and when you are reminded every 10 minutes that we are on the verge of an apocalypse when nothing will be done, then you will reflexively believe in the seriousness of the situation. The power of the screen is big. And in the swamp of doomsday news headers one might drown easily.
Dictatorship in disguise
The rule is: at times of collective fear all the heads turn in the direction of the government with the polite yet urgent exclamation: 'Yo dude, do something about this!' And what always and everywhere happens is exactly that, with the only instruments the government knows: commandment and prohibition. All of the fundamental freedoms of humanity are being tossed in the trash can under the guise of national health or national security or whateverthefuck else. It's no different with the coronavirus issue. Under the influence of months of media training most people are even eager to give up their freedoms. People who are a bit more cautious and express themselves critically on these forced measures, are being stigmatized as lunatics and later most likely as murderers (mark my words).
The measures taken now openly show in what kind of political state we live: a dictatorship in disguise. In a state of emergency the green light is always given to what formerly would have been viewed upon as a far-reaching infringement of human freedom. The justificaton for this is not to be found in a moral consideration, the justification comes down to what the masses think and desire at this very moment, hypnotised by a reinforced and repetitive process consisting of horrible media images. And if there is one truth that is always trustworthy: the masses are never right.
'If all the others jump off a bridge...'
Mass behaviour could simply be explained by the psychological assumption that when everyone is engaged in something, then it will be serious. That when the government takes such drastic measures, then there must be something going on, right? This psychological assumption could be turned around as well: when almost nobody is engaged in something, then it isn't serious. That when the government takes no measures against this, then there is nothing going on, right? This is psychology 101: most people take decisions based on this rhetoric to clear their conscience and to sooth their mind. That is the reason why people are totally okay with a temporary prison for everyone on earth; only through the total acceptance of this rhetoric are they able to mentally adapt to the 180 degrees rotation that is taking place now.
The most frightening, however, is not that people react a certain way or that they base their decision-making on this psychological rhetoric (although very stupid indeed), but that the person is believing so much in the justification of their world view that they want to impose it on their fellow man. And yes, I dare to say it: collectivistic thinking is the root of all evil. This is so deeply ingrained in humanity that the advice to children should actually be: 'If all the others jump off a bridge, then I want you to jump too.'
Hypocrites, all of you!
Directed to the people who find it all of a sudden totally normal to be in forced home isolation, who find it totally normal to see that nobody is allowed to travel between countries, who find it totally normal to see people be criminalised for just walking outside, who find it totally normal that people beat each other up for the last four-layered toilet roll, who find it totally normal that all of humanity stands two meters apart, who find it totally normal that all acts have to be done with a constant post-flow of antibacterial gel, who find it totally normal to regard everyone else as a potential suspect, to the people who regard this huge social upheavel as totally normal, and to those who actively condemn the other for the fact that they find this all a bit theatrical: where were you two years ago? Where were you with your thoughts when the biggest flu epidemic of the last thirty years was taking place? Where were you when more than half a million people worldwide died of the consequences of influenza? Where was your call for closed schools and closed borders? Why weren't you choosing for social isolation to prevent infecting the elderly of society? It could have happened easily with the incubation period of influenza. Why did nobody take any measures to 'flatten the curve'? Right, because there wasn't written a word about it in the news papers. And your reaction at the time was a contrasting: 'Geez, it's that time of the year again.'
Imagine yourself in an empty corridor. Light shines through at the end of it. There is a shadow on the wall in front of you. It moves. You hear loud rumbling. You see the shadow getting bigger and you realise something is coming. You start to sweat. You see the shadow becoming even bigger and it looks like an animal, perhaps a hyena? The howling becomes louder, yes it's howling. The shadow is getting the shape of a bear now, with open mouth, ready to attack. Fragments of torn human flesh go through your head. Drops of sweat run over your forehead and fall off the tip of your nose. The shadow is coming closer; you are aware that the beast can step around the corner any moment now. Only it's not a bear anymore, but a colossal dragon. You do a quick Hail Mary, just when a little dog comes running up to you. The light made the shadow bigger and the echos amplified the barking. That is Corona, the media-virus.
P.s. When we have to undergo a forced stay-at-home isolation anyway, then I propose the following measure: in the coming month everyone is obligated to smoke at least 85 milligrams of DMT. I heard that this could possibly be the vaccin against corona.