You know what really blows my mind though?

I’ve been doing this for ages now, decades, saying stuff to try to make good stuff happen and stop bad stuff from happening, knowing full well that the wrong word or the wrong impression or not enough nuance or respect for the complexities of a situation can cause harm or even get people hurt.  I lose sleep over stuff that I say and write.  Over things I said and wrote years ago.  Not because I regret participating in things, but because I understand that words matter and that people and situations are connected, that what we do creates ripples.

And it’s like the people doing that, the ones trying to make the world better, because they’re in club ‘you should know better’ they live under a different set of rules.  The slightest misstep or misstatement or mistake and it’s a scandal.  It’s a social firestorm.

Meanwhile, people on the evil side just run around screaming to whoever will listen ‘the holocaust never happened’ or ‘migrants are bringing in disease and so we need to treat them like animals and put them in torture cages’ or ‘it’s just the flu’ or ‘God won’t let you get the virus if you go to church’ or ‘it’s just a hoax’ and NOTHING ever comes of that, in most cases.  It’s like two siblings, the helpful one and the one who misbehaves constantly.  It’s like if you cultivate a pattern of awful, destructive behavior people come to expect that and you get a pass.  If that’s not your uniform position or activity you are held to an almost unattainable standard of perfection at all times.

It happens on the internet, in culture, in politics, in any space where human social capital is a factor.  And it’s silly.  It’s broken.  It places the entire burden on the people who are already carrying it anyway, and gives people causing harm to the world a pass and permission to continue behaving that way.

Actually, no government policy is abstract.  Governments kill people all the time through bad policy.  It’s just that those people are invisible to the television camera.

The last time I heard the ‘need to balance the economy with science’ talking point was during the mid 2000s, when the corporate media were still exploring the ‘controversial’ scientific ‘debate’ over climate change.

There’s even a bit in ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ (Al Gore’s climate change film from 2006) where he shows a slide illustrating this talking point, a pile of gold bars balanced on a scale with the Earth sitting on the other side.

It’s the same nonsense now that it was then.  The propagandists for the wealthy are integrating an enormous global issue into the capitalist structure by framing the continuous concentration of wealth as an integral pillar of society, which it most certainly is not.  Now, during the virus crisis, just as then when people were fighting to show the dangers of climate change, some want to trade human lives and safety for profit.  And many within the corporate press are going along with it.

The corporate media are lying.  Do not trust anything they tell you.

China is a dictatorship that operates concentration camps and covered up a virus outbreak that is now killing the world.  They are not our friends.