Everyone Is Lying. Merry Christmas!

On Saturday I drove a trio of beauties to the pageant of pulchritude at Petit Hermitage in West Hollywood, young women who spent the trip altering PDF files of Covid tests to satisfy the doorman.

There was never any question of their gaining entry, Wuhan status be damned. Take it from someone who knows, the nightclub economy is founded on the presence of such women being prominently visible.  How else can you charge $2000 for a table and move discount champagne from Costco at $2o a flute?  Stretch pants and cleavage…

On Monday, I moseyed down to mandate-free Santa Monica for dinner, and was irritated to learn this particular restaurant was asking for proof of vaccination. Neither my companion nor myself being vax-submissive, we turned to leave, as which point the hostess rather furtively urged us to just show her our phones.  She looked at our blank screens, smiled broadly and seated us amidst the other unmasked diners who may have been showing  proof or nothing at all.

In June we had a preference cascade where everyone took their masks off. This winter we have a preference cascade for fake paperwork.

We’ve entered the public hypocrisy phase of late stage Communist nations. They pretend to pay us and we pretend to work.

Behold the mission failure of Wuhan Zero. Behold the arrogance of the administrators who claimed they would stop a virus. Mutations of the 1918 Spanish Flu are with us today, but Omicron is the little people’s fault for insufficient obeisance to diktats from on high. If only we ignored the adverse event profile and lined up for the vaccine which turns to not to be a vaccine after all, if only we would submit to a protocol of semi-annual shots, and masks, and distancing, and permission slips for family gatherings, it would be over.  Our liberties will be restored.  Why can’t we be nudged toward perfection?

Not a true statement. Not even close.

Masks will protect us, says Fauci, knowingly lying. Children are at risk of Covid, schools should be closed. That too is a lie. People who have a positive PCR test actually have Covid, also a lie. Here’s another lie, squared: the signers of the Great Barrington Declaration are discredited frauds.

I am science, says Fauci, lying abundantly, those who question my policy are anti-science.

Here’s a little science: the “vaccines” neither prevent infection nor transmission, and have a useful life cycle of less than six months, obliging the CDC to quietly rewrite the definition of the term vaccine.  Boosters appear to be of little use against Omicron, a mutation beyond the reach of Pfizer and Moderna. Natural immunity following infection has proven the strongest, ideal resistance.

If I said this on Twitter, Facebook or IG, I would be de-platformed for trafficking in misinformation.  This would be a lie, wholly endorsed by the legacy media, eager to license free speech on its terms. Their answer to Omicron, as is Fauci’s, is more jabs and silencing questions.

Have you noticed no one is talking about herd immunity anymore? Herd immunity has an off-ramp, and we can’t have that. Wuhan metrics now reference deadlines of total compliance. Deadlines perpetually pushed back weeks or months in the face of passive resistance from those lying liars, the segment of the public insensible to bullying.

Here are therapeutic protocols which have proven to work at scale:
-Vitamin D
-Ivermectin
-Hydroxychloroquine
-Zinc
-Monoclonal antibodies
-Exercise in the sunshine

Here’s what hasn’t worked: keeping everyone indoors, sedentary and isolated, for two years.  Sending people who test positive home to wait until they develop respiratory failure before a treatment protocol is offered. Putting people on respirators.

Guess which we are obligated to lie about?

The Clerisy’s ideal citizen. Very on brand for 2021 and ready to inform on others.

Here is wisdom, from an older source: there is nothing new under the sun. Viruses have been with us since the beginning.  So has human folly. One can no more eradicate the mutations of the former than one could frailties of character.  Hubris and arrogance are with us always. It is our nature.

Tonight we celebrate the birth of Christ, who had something to say about man’s fallen nature and the futility of earthly perfection. People will light candles and publically lie about believing in Him. Others will lie to themselves in an effort to discount any possibility his revelation might prove true, then quietly fulfill his teachings.

Mrs. UpintheValley hasn’t darkened the door of a church in a decade. Tonight she’s going to sneak a $100 gift card into the mailbox of a neighbor who is struggling to pay her bills.  One could say she has been infected with an irrepressible urge to commit virtue.

I take comfort in the assumption He will not return in my lifetime as I fear we just might kill him all over again. In the meantime, let us live not by lies. Let us build our immune systems. Merry Christmas!

To Be A Good Witness

Dinnertime at Hot Wings. Fork it over.

The LAPD has a message for all of us: In the event of robbery, surrender your valuables.  “If you are being robbed, do not resist the robbery suspects; cooperate and comply with their demands. Be a good witness.”

This is not exactly helpful. What would you tell the police when they arrive? He was wearing a hoodie, officer… 

The Hoodie Posse is running California right now.  You have to admire the brazenness of walking into Home Depot en masse to steal hammers and crowbars…then moving on to the mall for the next robbery.

Thieves drive late model cars to the site of their crimes, double park in the street. Why wouldn’t you? George Gascon is not sending anyone to jail. He would rather police your language.  Don’t call them looters. Too much racial baggage.

There is a clear societal consensus against stealing, yet robbery is not enforced.

There is no consensus on vaccine mandates but they are enforced ruthlessly. Welcome to clown world.

“If you criticize me, you’re criticizing science,” declares Anthony Fauci, more than once. “Senators who ask questions are liars.”

Gavin Newsom has extended his ’emergency powers’ until March, making for two years of rule by administrative decree, unchallenged by the California legacy media or the legislature.

Everyone must get a booster, declared King Gavin, who rolled up his sleeve for the Moderna jab, then disappeared off the face of the earth for a week, failing to attend Cop26.  He resurfaced at the Ivy Getty wedding.

If you want to understand California in one frame, here it is.

The perpetrator was wearing a car salesman grin and a lot of hair product, officer.  He was accompanied by the Speaker of the House. The billionaires granddaughter was quite smashing. The gala was a paid for by fossil fuel wealth, passing down to the fourth generation. All the guests were given a tax cut from Nancy. No, seriously.

I’m making my witness. Am I cooperating enough?

The “vaccines” neither prevent transmission nor infection and lose efficacy after six months.  They no longer correlate with hospitalization or death rates. Why do we continue to refer to the jab as a vaccine?

Why do we yearn for the leash?  Why are so many of us acting like a conquered people?

We are living out a society-wide version of Flowers for Algernon, losing our collective intelligence, cognizant our maxims of prudence are slipping away, yet at the same time incapable of course correction.  So far.

Writing about diners surrendering their valuables table side without resistance and ending up writing about vaccine efficacy is very on brand for 2021.

It’s really about the loss of civic guardrails that maintain trust.   To ask these questions is my way of being a good witness.

The answer is not a booster shot.

Squeal Points

AFP/ Getty Images

There’s a guy on our street who likes to open the trunk of his car, roll down the windows, turn the bass up to 11, then go into the house to drink beer with his sound system parked in the driveway, rattling windows to the end of the block.  On a Tuesday morning.  He does this frequently.  The house is a rental, paid for by the government. The owner lives in the Hollywood Hills. Somebody had enough and called the police with a noise complaint.

“We’ll send a patrol car over,” said the LAPD.

Two hours later, no police.   Okay, perhaps not the most pressing issue the LAPD has on its hands.  Then again, it’s a weekday morning in the Valley. How much action can there be?

Have we crossed the rubicon beyond which quality of life issues are no longer enforced?  Or do we have a supply chain problem in public safety?

Fewer people are willing to be cops anymore. Urban cops. During the summer of George Floyd, young men delighted in going nose to nose with police lines for the benefit of cameras:

Punk ass bitch.
Make a move, Opie.
Where you gun, 5-0?
Whatcha gonna do, bitch?
Cracka.

The cop is required to be unflappable, at parade rest,  in a mimicry of boredom while aerosolized spittle pocks his face. Cell phones record his every twitch, waiting on the slightest crack in composure. Black cops? Even worse. Uncle Tom. Why you cooning? 

Raise the cost on enforcing laws enough and below a certain level they won’t be enforced anymore.   This is the squeal point.

Gadsden flag on the tarmac

The Biden administration, because it is totally, absolutely not authoritarian and only here to restore our democratic norms, is telling every company in America to fire vax-resisting workers six weeks before Christmas. Blue state governors and local officials, eager to play along, have similar mandates.

Because Americans are a free people, essential workers are pushing back. Nurses. Truckers. Railroad engineers. Cops and firemen. Sheriff Alex Villaneuva isn’t enforcing the mandate, so now the county has to fire 25% of its uniformed personnel. Only it hasn’t done so yet. They supervisors keep delaying. In New York, the fire department has 18 fire houses unmanned this week, the squads on unpaid leave. Garbage is piling up in the street after Mayor DeBlasio laid off 20% of the Sanitation workers.

Two weeks ago the pilots of Southwest Airlines staged a sick-out, resulting in the cancellation of 2000 flights. The CEO blamed it on anything but the the vax mandate, before quietly dropping vaccination requirements.  Then over Halloween weekend American Airlines cancelled 1,500 flights due to “high wind gusts” and…staffing shortages.

Union Pacific just dropped its vax mandate when 44% of railroad workers refused to comply.

The squeal point works in two directions.

Today America is the snail on the edge of a straight razor with edicts being handed down, then ignored. Then threatened again, and postponed once more.

There’s a financial economy and then there’s the real economy and logistics is the field on which they meet.

Kyrie Irving, integrity in motion

Kyrie Irving of the Brooklyn Nets is forgoing a $35 million salary and a chance at a championship ring on a super team that was built for him.

“To him, this is about a grander fight than the one on the court and Irving is challenging a perceived control of society and people’s livelihood, according to sources with knowledge of Irving’s mindset.”

“Kyrie wants to be a voice for the voiceless,” a source told The Athletic. 

The smart money says Kyrie will fold.  When the Nets begin to make a run, and he’s on the couch getting fat, and all of the Big Apple is blaming him for denying the city its first NBA title since 1973, he won’t be able to hold out.

It’s only been three weeks, but so far Kyrie is sticking to principle. He’s losing more money per day than most of us will make in a year.

Today the L.A. vaccine mandate goes into effect and today is the day I stop spending money in my beloved Los Angeles. My impact won’t be Kyrie-like in scale, but it will be felt, in the aggregate.

We should each of us think seriously what our squeal point might be, and why, and then try to hold out a little longer. If the state prevails on this, there will be no limiting principle to freedom of movement, of association, or commerce.

After that, its going to be Irish democracy, the refuge of a conquered people.

How To Karen A City

Queen Nury, in ecstasy                                                                                                                                    KCBS/LA

Bossy McBossypants, your moment is now. Remember July? You were against the ropes.  Your year of telling everyone what to do was at an ebb.  You were being shooed away like a covey of annoying birds. A scold of Karens, ignored.

Now we will be made to listen, won’t we?

The City Council is set to pass an ordinance this week requiring patrons to show proof of full vaccination at indoor areas including restaurants, bars, gyms, movie theaters, convention centers, card rooms, museums, malls, play areas, spas and salons in the city beginning Nov. 4.

A passport in all but name, as a condition of enjoying the fruits of the city.

“No one is forcing anyone to get vaccinated,” Nury Martinez said. “But if you don’t, there are certain things you will not be able to do without showing proof of vaccination.”

“Venues can be issued a citation for not implementing the requirement, and may be fined $1,000 for a second violation, and even more for subsequent violations, according to the city’s ordinance.”

Say hello to the little commissars eagerly bursting forth, like the Lorax from the tree stump.

Perhaps this would be a good time to consider:

  1. Los Angeles County is 77% vaccinated. Among those aged 50+ the rate is 85%. Add another ten percent for people who have recovered from infection and we have achieved the herd immunity threshold, historically. But, as with all things Wuhan, the normal rules are suspended.
  2. If you are vaccinated, the un-vaxxed pose little threat to you. As in, a 0.004 percent chance of hospitalization.
  3. Children are not at risk, full stop.
  4. All the vaccines have a problematic safety record among younger vaxees. The danger of the jab, while statistically remote, exceeds the danger of the virus itself in, say, a healthy 25 year old.
  5. Natural immunity has proved stronger, and less leaky, than the vax. Requiring America’s most immune people be injected with an unproven drug for which one is obliged to sign a waiver exempting the manufacturer from a lengthy list of side effects including myocarditis, has no sound basis in science and places Los Angeles in direct conflict with the Nuremberg Code.

The question we might ask ourselves is: why now?  This is the finish line.  Caveat: yes, there are people refusing to vax, who, given their health profile would be wiser to do so and may pay with their lives. This is their right in a free society. Despite what we are told they have not overwhelmed the healthcare system. The Delta wave is receding after two months, the typical timeline for a viral wave in every locale on Earth. It is the nature of infection.  Each subsequent wave will be smaller. Wuhan will be endemic but manageable.  There will be never be zero cases.

Unless of course the vaccines prove useless against subsequent mutations, in which case why are they mandated at all?

Why the biomedical police state?

These hands…are trying to say something                                                                                                           AP

Some people just love, love, love the new dispensation, safety being but a pretense for the really fun part: standing atop the parapet wearing the epaulets of emergency powers.  Kathy Hochul, the placeholder Governor of New York, has given herself the authority to fire 100,000 un-vaxxed health workers and replace them with the National Guard. In the middle of a nursing shortage.

Why would 100,000 nurses, of all people, refuse the vaccine? It’s worth considering.

For now, the mandates are pandemic-based. This won’t last. Once the architecture is loaded on your phone, the passport will extend to other things entirely. So get ready for perpetual crisis theater. The clerisy has learned it can do whatever it desires when America Is In Crisis™.  Who would stop them? Not the Times or CNN.

If gun control can be rebranded as a public health issue, then so has ‘racism’ and ‘transphobia’, however the nanny state chooses to define those terms.   If the CDC can bar landlords from evicting non-payers of rent, then health and safety has no limiting principle.

A Chinese social credit system begins here, in exactly this newly claimed space. Anything our betters don’t care for will be loaded into it. Participation in society will be contingent on affirming things we may not believe.

If that sounds a bit hyperbolic please consider all the things in recent memory that were never, ever going to happen, except, well, maaaybe a decade from now, only to come true in under a year.  Tell it to all the people de-platformed from Twitter and YouTube. De-monetized. Banned from banking services.

No one’s “being forced”, remember, only being denied entry to as many things as possible in Los Angeles, America’s best governed city.

Which is why, as a fully vaxxed person, I will not partake of the mandate nor carry the passport, and won’t do so even when conveniently embedded on my phone. Convenience is the road to perdition.

Girls night out, MacLeod Ale Brewery, July. Remember July?

Last week I passed an opportunity to see James McAvoy in the National Theater adaptation of Cyrano.  That hurt. It means I’m not seeing going to see Tannhauser and Aida at the LA Opera. It means, if the council resolution passes, I will be quitting my membership at LA Fitness after 20 years.

So where will my discretionary spending go? To Hermosa. To Santa Monica. To Culver. To Playa. To any city that will have my consumer dollars, the only means I have at present to assert my foundational liberties.

How will that help Los Angeles?  It won’t. Those cities will prosper from our foolishness in the same way they have for decades. It’s worth noting the one element they have in common: populations under 100,000.  Elected officials have to answer the phone in Hermosa, unlike here. Freedom doesn’t begin in Utah, it can be found just across the city limits.

It’s why Amazon Studios are in Culver and Disney and Yahoo are in Burbank and Skechers is based in Manhattan Beach. Why Mattel and Rocketdyne are in El Segundo. Why 99 Cents Only is based in Commerce and Avery-Dennison is in Glendale. The satellite communities of L.A. aren’t run by ignorant grasping hacks.

Meanwhile, in another America, getting further and further away from us by the day:

America’s primal yawp sounds like Metallica.   It doesn’t wear a mask, nor require a passport and is rather altogether joyful. This is us, in sixty seconds. This has been us all along.  Yes, even in Los Angeles.

Karenocracy

Safety theater at Runyon Canyon.

We were already an unhealthy people in March 2020. Fat, sedentary, drug taking and prone to melancholy. In 18 months we have become significantly unhealthier on direct instructions from the government. Stay home. Wear a face diaper. Live in isolation. Here’s some money, order in.  Be alone. Pestilence is all about. You are the vector of pestilence. Hide your murder breath. Don’t gather in one place like the idiots of MAGA country. Are you unhappy? Here’s a pill. Live in your underwear. Keep a pair of door pants at the ready for delivery people.  Don’t go to school.  See your sad reflection in a Zoom grid. Stare at your face for hours every day while pretending to learn. Here’s another six months of checks. Hit the app. Have the little people bring you things. Give Silicon Valley control of your headspace. Stream everything. Pay people to talk to you to fight the sad.

93,331 overdose deaths in 2020.  Three more on the floor in Venice this weekend, plus the wonderful Michael K. Williams in New York.

Since the pestilence from the Wuhan Institute of Virology reached our city, Los Angeles has handed down edicts in the name of our collective safety like a factotum from a Terry Gilliam movie. Masks. Social distancing. Disinfecting surfaces. The utility of these measures in preventing infection are marginal.  Airborne coronaviruses find a way.  They burn through the population in a given area in a two-month conflagration then wither for want of new hosts. New variants come along later and we repeat the process. Sweden is the best real-time experiment we have lockdowns may not significantly alter the ultimate outcome.

What would have helped us? Hardening one’s immune system. Dropping to a healthy weight. Improved lung function. Cardio. Vitamin D.  Among people under 65, obesity is the greatest co-morbidity, 78% of hospitalizations.

Two words:  Runyon Canyon. Get on the trail. Clear your head. Enjoy the eye candy. Stand on the ridge top like a philosopher king and contemplate the city of your youth. Turn and face the Valley of your now. Be anti-fragile. De-mask yourself and smile at your passing brethren.  Give them your face so they may give you theirs and you both may carry each other home and know you are not alone.

What a headf**k  it is to discover this week L.A. is doing all it can -still!- to restrain the public from walking there. Is it closed? Not exactly. The parking lot is closed. Most of the street parking on Mulholland has been taken away.  The main gates are closed. There are two doors, one at the top, the other on Vista, that are left unlocked. So it’s not like you literally can’t enter but the City sure makes you feel its disapproval.

What free people would stand for this? Where did this deference to grasping bureaucrats come from?

Everyone from Fauci to power-tripping LA County Health Director and fake MD Barbara Ferrer should have been pushing vigorous immune health from the beginning. How much would that have cost? Bupkis. For lack of profit it is a solution that dare not speak its name.  What would be the downside risk? There isn’t any. One can still become sick, of course, but the ability of the virus to overwhelm you is greatly diminished.  You can still push vaccines. But first, build the foundation.  Much can be accomplished in 18 months through incremental persistent changes in diet and exercise.

Here’s a data point for you all. Since Wuhan began, I have had over 2000 people in my car in various states of masking: correctly, incorrectly, hanging below the nose, under the chin, discarded altogether, talking, coughing, burping and laughing.  I lower my mask to sip water. I chew gum. I talk to people. The odds I have not come into contact with aerosolized Wuhan particles, that my lungs have not been breached, are remote. Negligible I would argue.

I have not had so much as a sore throat. I am neither superhuman, nor exceptionally lucky.  What I am is healthy (also vaxed, as of May). I spent much of the past year working outside, hiking and biking and on occasion, running.  This was a choice any of us can make. I’ve been the overweight guy, prone to melancholy. That didn’t work for me.

Our solution is not a pill. Nor is it the defenestration of the CEO of Sweetgreen for daring to say the hospitalization rate of Wuhan was driven by the “underlying problem” of obesity, then abase himself in a forced apology. Nor is it wishing Joe Rogan an early death for stating on his podcast he overcame the Delta variant in three days using Ivermectin and monoclonal antibodies.

Coronaviruses are endemic. They are with us now and will be for the rest of the lives. We have flu strains floating around dating back to 1918. The real questions before us are not viral ones. They are matters of social control.

How much liberty are we going to yield to those who would prefer us fat, sedentary and compliant? America was not designed to be a bio-medical security state, but we are building one now.

What are we going to do about it? You will be put to the question, like it or not. It will find you, even when you are out riding your bike.

At the Crossroads

Things we’ve been told are true and cannot be questioned:
The solution to drug addiction and mental illness is free housing.Homeless housing cannot be a Quonset hut. It must cost $500K per unit.
Looting is speech.
Not putting handcuffs on black people will lead to better outcomes for the black community.
State mandated inactivity will protect you from the Wuhan virus.
Every infectious disease from Lyme to Ebola is named for its geographic origin, but Wuhan must be called Covid, because racism.
Also, disagreeing with the CCP is racist.
Disagreeing with the diktats of corporations wishing to do business with the CCP…extra racist.
You can catch the Wuhan virus walking by yourself outdoors in the sunshine without a mask.
You can catch it from door knobs. Everything must be de-sanitized multiple times a day.
Everyone must stand six feet apart, masked and mute. No large public gatherings.
Unless it’s a BLM rally. Or looting. Then the science doesn’t apply.
The first cases emerged from inside the Wuhan Institute of Virology, but a lab leak hypothesis is a conspiracy theory.
Only crazy Trump people would say such a thing. De-platform them all.
Dr. Fauci would never fund gain-of-function research at the Wuhan lab.
Okay, so he did. It would have been a “dereliction of duty” to have not done so.
But Ivermectin is unsafe as a prophylaxis against Wuhan.
If you say otherwise in Senate testimony YouTube will de-platform you. Because Merck.
The limits of free speech should be proscribed by organizations and unelected bodies outside U.S soil.  Also, corporations.
Merck administered 4 billion doses of Ivermectin globally while under patent. Now in the public domain, it is ‘unsafe’.
Taiwan is not a nation but a rogue province of China.
Just ask John Cena.

A little something YouTube will not be taking down.
They’re the experts on truth. Not you.

This diminution of citizenship has crept up on us quickly, if imperceptibly. Our willingness to defer to authority for the benefit of all has been weaponized by forces that recognize no limiting principle. Ask yourself: why are you being told to apologize all the time now? Why are the parameters of acceptable speech disqualifying what was the majority opinion day before yesterday? Who is doing this? Why have we ceded that authority? The slippery slope pundits referenced when American politics was vanilla and operated within recognizable 20 yard lines? Yeah, that’s gone now. We’re at the bottom of the ice crevice, with a bump on our head, looking up at a sliver of sky, but we can’t find purchase.  The only way out is through.

What does “through” mean, in this post-Constitutional moment? I’m not sure. The picture at the top of the page I took in Mendocino county, walking near the Eel River on a road with less than hundred people in an area as large as the San Fernando Valley. This Little Free Library stood at a crossroads between the river and a field, an artifact of Jeffersonian America.  I thought of all the Little Free Libraries around Los Angeles, and the universal desire to share knowledge with strangers.  Therein perhaps is a path forward. To be anti-fragile as a nation begins with personal anti-fragility.  Thinking for oneself, the way the Founders intended. De-coupling one’s understanding of Truth from one’s curated feed. Of no longer being a prisoner to an algorithm.  Returning to paper, if you will.

Is The Worm Turning?

This is overdue.  Dodger Stadium is at only 25% of capacity. Imagine the sound of a full house.   Louder, please. Everywhere we go.

God bless Vancouver.  Californians were once like this.  Now they’re in Texas.  Not all of them, praise the lord.  Some of us are still around.  We keep the memory of liberty with us like a beloved and well-worn pair of work boots we can’t throw away. Rise and shine now, from our stony sleep.

Gaslighting of America

This was NoHo, two months ago

How long did they think a free people were going to accept this?  Now that warm weather is here again and we are approaching herd immunity, oh, how the little Commissars of Public Good, the unaccountable issuers of edicts desire this belle epoque of Maximum Karen to continue.

We will have a vaccine before the end of 2020, said the President Who Shall Not Be Named. Nonsense, declaimed the doctors of Twitter medicine on cable news. The week after the election it was announced we had two.  Everyone will be vaccinated by April, said President W.S.N.B.N. Oh please, said the blue checkmarked Experts. Not a chance. Fact check! This week Biden announced 90% of Americans will have a vaccine available by April 19th, within five miles of where they live.

There is a preference cascade about to happen. People are on the verge of de-masking themselves.  Without permission. With the edifice of Soviet-level disinformation crumbling, what is Karen, Inc. to do?  Hmmm…oh I know, new strains! Mutations, from dark and distant continents. Not scary enough? Try this. The vaccine may not work after six months, a year…some point in the future.  If everything just re-opens, how will we incentivize people to do what we say?

A passport.  Yes, a vaccine passport, for safety. To enter all places of business. To travel. To attend school or have dinner. To partake of America, first display your checkmark of good citizenship.

The architecture is already in place, on your phone. So convenient!  Now the vaccine is no longer tied to health, it is tied to freedom. Take it away, Naomi Wolf:

“…it’s not about virus, it’s the data. The vaccine is an excuse, a Trojan Horse, to get you to agree to a platform that is ALREADY 360 degree surveillance, geolocation, turns society off and on.
“Once this platform is ‘mandated’ you can no longer opt in or out of out as you do when you sign ‘I agree’ to terms and conditions on a website. You’ll be FORCED to ‘agree’ in order to work, socialize, travel. Then any functionality – social credit system that turns PayPal off..”

Naomi is a lefty. I can’t tell you how refreshing this is.  One of the unexpected oddities of 2020 was the exodus of dissent liberals from woke media to the Substack platform: Glenn Greenwald, Matt Taibbi, Andrew Sullivan and Bari Weiss…to make a fearless witness against the perfidy of woke cancel culture.

Remember, we off-gas data from our phones perpetually. Think of your digital ghost as a form of opposition research against yourself. The virtual You is in the hands of five corporations with a clear political agenda and a willingness to act on it.  They have already assembled a social credit score for you in all but name. They have used it to make money off you for years, now they will use it against you to implement restraints on behalf of government bureaucrats. Restraints which the government is prohibited from enacting.

This is the passport, ladies and gentlemen. When they ask, show them this.

Now take your mask off.  You’re being gaslighted.

Prisoners

A Zoom neighborhood, at rush hour

We have reached the one year anniversary of 15 Days to Flatten the Curve.    Which, let’s be honest, has been a nationwide exercise in poor people delivering pleasures to the wealthy and privileged. Indefinitely.

A year of “journalists” berating the little people on behalf of billionaires and government workers and the professional classes.

A year of dhimmitude and mask theater and gaslighting.

A year of Karen screaming at people going about their business, outdoors, bothering no one.

Having surrendered sovereignty to unaccountable and hypocritical actors, how does one bloom in the new Post-Constitutional America™?

I think about this when I encounter trees growing in confined spaces.  Some species do better than others. They reach deeper into the soil. They break the concrete around them. Consider this liberty in action. Reach deeper. Don’t ask permission.

The alternative looks like this.

Be anti-fragile.  Bloom from the weephole in the scorching concrete.  Don’t ask permission.  Stop submitting.  Don’t be a prisoner.  Reach for the light. Take your mask off.

Like this guy.

Breaking Apples


Two years ago, UTLA went out on strike for a 6% pay increase and Vista Middle School was selected as one of the sites for a picket line. As a neighbor and husband of a teacher, I walked up there in an act of skeptical solidarity, to see how the shakedown of Los Angeles taxpayers was progressing.

What struck me at the time was the amount of honking support they received from passing cars in working-class Latino Van Nuys.

The outcome was preordained. The union banged the spoon and L.A. surrendered everything it wanted.   Plus seconds. And dessert. What followed was Soviet-era astroturfed propaganda from UTLA bathing in the adulation of a grateful public, paid for by…the same public, who had no say in the matter.

Fast forward to 2020, and to the Wuhan virus.  In a time of shared sacrifice and difficulty, guess who didn’t want to report to work and had the power not to do so and to be paid anyway?

Only 36% of students in L.A. Unified regularly engaged in distance learning, i.e. turned in homework and completed tests, i.e., received an education.  This is desertion in the face of the enemy.  It would be bad to do this to kids for a semester. For three semesters in a row, across two academic years?

Suffice to say, this is not what schools are doing in China. Or Korea. Or Europe. Or Texas.  This is not what is happening at the prep school where Mrs. UpintheValley teaches.

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What if Wuhan isn’t killing people so much as breaking America as we once understood it? What if the pandemic is a political toxin in medical drag?

To judge it by its works, if you were told a year ago that one-third of small businesses would be put to death by government policy, would you have believed me?  What if I said the richest men in America would see their fortunes expand by 50%, also due to government policy? That the educational divide between public and private schools would become unbridgeable? That the tectonic plates between those who could telecommute and the service class who delivered their comforts would shift to the point they no longer touched? That the chief beneficiary of these changes would be China itself, which would exercise a veto over the discussion of pandemic origins by dangling the carrot of access to its markets? That the infrastructure of think tanks and academic departments which might serve as a bulwark of market critique would be revealed to be funded by China? That Zoom would become indispensable to our work life and TikTok embedded in our play and both would be Chinese owned? That teenagers in Wuhan would be throwing Lollapalooza-sized pool parties while Americans cowered in masks in the outdoors, fearing a scold of Karens. That bureaucrats would presume extra-constitutional powers. That the first amendment would become fully fungible to corporate diktats. That every cable network would maintain a death clock that magically disappeared with the departure of Trump, the first president to renegotiate trade agreements with China in terms more favorable to American workers, if only slightly.

A more fearless America, during the 1969 Swine flu

That’s a lot of damage for 12 months. We can’t do much about geopolitical arrangements, but we can do something about Vista Middle School.  We know a few things we didn’t know a year ago. Children are not at risk and are low vectors of transmission. Teachers are not retail workers.  They can temp check every child who enters the building. They can demand plexiglass barriers and daily disinfection of classrooms. They can also accept the reciprocal obligations of public service to the working-class Van Nuysians who supported them when they were banging the spoon for more money.