ZMan takes a bike ride in the boonies and has himself way too much fun.
Maryland is one of those strange parts of the country where you can go from the land of suburbanite bug men to old time country living in a few miles. Get far enough away from Lagos itself and the state is quite beautiful, with an aesthetic that is unique. The state has always been a strange confluence of the surrounding regions.
I went over this weird little bridge and saw a couple of soyish looking guys standing by a car pulled over to the side of the road. I approached thinking they were having car trouble, but then I saw one of them was wearing a Reason T-shirt. I stopped and beat them. They knew why. Just in case I also said that Hans Herman-Hoppe spells his name wrong. I may have mentioned some unfortunate things about Ayn Rand’s personal life. You can never be too thorough with these types.
Heh. Stupid neo-hippies. Then we come to the more serious part.
Coming back to my bit of the world, I could not help but think about how easy everyone has gone along with the crackdown. Americans may say they don’t trust their politicians or the media, but in the end, they trusted them completely on this panic. You can be sure the politicians and media are both feeling bold right now, having seen tens of millions dutifully follow their commands. No matter what happens in the near term, the long-term cost of that will far outweigh the threat of the virus.
The empty parks and streets are a good reminder that civilization is people, not the stuff made by people. If a bunch of strangers moved into our empty towns right now, it would not be the same. Soon, they would transform the stuff to reflect their will. Right now, our civilization is full of people ready to cower under their bed when the people in charge come up with a decent ghost story. I half wonder if the people in charge are doing this just to see if there is any fight left in us.
All of this reminds me of a great Joe Sobran quote. “By today’s standards King George III was a very mild tyrant indeed. He taxed his American colonists at a rate of only pennies per annum. His actual impact on their personal lives was trivial. He had arbitrary power over them in law and in principle but in fact it was seldom exercised. If you compare his rule with that of today’s U.S. Government you have to wonder why we celebrate our independence.”
Some folks complain every July 4th about how “Independence Day” has come to mean little more than an excuse for a barbecue and a good drunk, but in our current disgraceful straits I think that’s a hell of a lot more appropriate than We The Sheeple patting themselves on the back and congratulating each other on how “free” they are.