Jeffrey Tucker provides a great book review and commentary.
This is an important shift worth noting.
New York Magazine is featuring an article called “COVID Lockdowns Were a Giant Experiment. It Was a Failure.” The authors are two excellent journalists, Joe Nocera and Bethany McLean, who have also written a new book called The Big Fail, which I have not read but intend to.
The ascent of the book and thesis is hugely important, if only to further blunt the impact of Michael Lewis’s The Premonition, which came out in 2021 with the purpose of valorizing the absolute worst of the lockdowners.
The worry at the time was that Lewis’s book, like The Big Short, would become a major movie that would codify lockdowns as the right way to deal with infectious disease. That does not seem to be happening, and the cleverly titled book by Nocera and McLean seems to assure that this will never happen. Thank goodness. This is progress. Be grateful when we see it. It is also a tremendous credit to all those who have been pushing the Nocera/McLean thesis since the spring of 2020.
Lockdowns were always an impossible means of pandemic management. We knew that from a century ago. It was not even controversial. The orthodoxy in public health survived even up to a few weeks before the lockdowns began.
Out of nowhere, settled wisdom was completely upended. Suddenly, as if straight from Orwell, lockdowns became “common sense mitigation measures.”
Meanwhile this country and most other countries around the world were being utterly tortured by a crazed bureaucracy determined to master the microbial kingdom by bullying people and wrecking their businesses, schools, churches, and lives.
If nothing else, this era proves for this generation the astonishing capacity of the human mind to undertake utterly insane policy experiments on a grand scale without the slightest evidence that they could ever succeed, even while they trample on all established norms of rights and liberties.
This is a revelation, at least to me. We’ve never seen anything like it in our lives.
Speaking personally, this reality utterly shattered a worldview that I didn’t know I held: namely, I genuinely believed humanity was on a path, even an inevitable one, toward greater knowledge, learning, and the embrace of freedom. After March 2020, I and everyone discovered otherwise. That was both intellectually and psychologically traumatic for me and for millions of others.7:40 pm on November 6, 2023