Living la vida locka.
Conservatives who predicted that COVID-19 would end with the Trump Administration were overlooking a central point: The Left’s hatred of Trump is merely a symptom of their guiding philosophy, which is, as “Yes, Minister” put it so concisely back in the 1970s, gradually to exclude people from government. The Left is in favor of any action that will expand the authority of bureaucrats by taking decisions out of the hands of citizens.
With the coronavirus, the Left is beside itself with glee: This is the first crisis since 9/11 broad enough to make possible a fundamental transformation of American society.
Every great crisis in American history, without exception, has been used to expand government. The greater the crisis, the greater the scope for expansion: 9/11 led to the NSA monitoring the traffic of the entire internet. It also created the Department of Homeland Security and the TSA, with the power to ruin air travel forever and give passengers a taste of how they’d feel being processed into a federal penitentiary. Of course Israel, facing a much more persistent terror threat, manages to keep terrorists off planes without touching their passengers’ privates. America’s security measures—which will never go away—were not a result of what needed doing, but what the government thought they could get away with doing.
In the 1930s, the Great Depression was used as an opportunity to create a welfare state in America and issue every citizen with an identification number, which we call Social Security. The Depression didn’t actually go away until World War II, and, once it did go away, the massive new government programs remained. In the 1860s, the Civil War was also an opportunity to impose an income tax for the first time in American history. The income tax was unconstitutional, so it wasn’t until another great looming crisis—World War I—that the constitution was amended to make the income tax a permanent feature of our lives.
The reason coronavirus so delights today’s Left is that the public response to their power grab has been overwhelmingly docile: The numbers of deaths are vastly below historic health panics, even with generous inflation via guidelines encouraging doctors to record anyone who previously had the virus as having died from it.
Even so, the government was able to lock people in their homes for a “two-week period” that turned out to be roughly a year, destroy much of the hospitality sector of the economy, force people to cover their faces in public as though living under a secular sharia, and, perhaps best of all, they got neighbors to snitch on neighbors and children to report their parents when these edicts weren’t followed.
It has been a bonanza. The everyday American citizen will always remember 2020 as a painful, terrible, soul-crushing year. For the Left, that makes it one of the best years on record. It is one of those great years in which they changed how Americans live.
They’ve been on quite a tear, enjoying a very nearly uninterrupted win streak since, oh, FDR at least. Those wins come with an asterisk attached, though, signifying their slightly tainted nature. Cattle Car Americans earned collective credit for an assist on each one, by docilely moo-ing their assent to every successive encroachment on the rights and freedoms they no longer care about.
The article’s title is “The Pandemic Is Over,” which isn’t entirely accurate. This will only be over when enough of us finally get off of our knees to stand up and say it is, and not a moment before. Until such time as our compliance is withdrawn, locked down we are, and locked down we shall remain.