The White Knights of Covid
The worldwide response to Covid was so outlandishly wrong that it now provides an easy target for political gain.
The thing that has always struck me most about the Covid phenomenon was how blatantly and transparently wrong the whole thing was. I always thought that in our modern age such acts of oppression and despotism would need to be more subtle, that they would be forced to hide beneath a veneer of respectability in order to sneak their depravity past the moral scrutiny of society. But, instead, we watched as lockdowns revealed our society to be little more than an open-air prison. Rights and civil liberties were simply switched off - as if they were really just words on a page that could be discarded the moment they became a hinderance to global planning. Citizens woke up one day and realised that they were prisoners whose privileges were suddenly to be removed. It was quite a jolt - not just to suddenly lose those privileges but to realise you never had the automatic right to them that you assumed. You were not, in other words, free. Your freedom was merely loaned to you by the Government and right now they wanted it back.
If you were unhappy about any of this, your right to protest against it was also turned off. You could protest other things if you liked, things the Government agreed with, but not this thing. Prisoners can protest conditions in their prison but they cannot protest the fact that they are there in the first place or their status as prisoners. Such is the nature of prisons and the fate of those who are held there.
Worse came later. Privileges returned but not to all as discrimination and segregation were introduced to society. There were the high prisoners and the low prisoners and this approach, barely conceivable in 21st century western democracies, was not just utilised and tolerated but actually signed into law by Ministers of State. I often think about the signatories of such legislation - imagine having your name appended for all eternity to the introduction of apartheid. If they’re lucky they will have the sense one day to look back at their actions with horror.
Nowhere in any of this was there subtlety. It was all out in the open, plain for all to see. Tyranny, bigotry, and inequality were carried proudly into society, its bearers unashamed and unapologetic.
We’re all so used to it now but it really is worth stopping and reflecting, in particular, on the manifest insanity of the Covid vaccine process. Prior to Covid, the quickest any vaccine came to market was four years - the time it took to create and test the Mumps vaccine. In contrast, Moderna designed their Covid vaccine in two days based on some computer data that was emailed to them by researchers in China. The origins of Pfizer’s vaccine (it’s essentially the same product, just slightly watered-down) is less clear but, seeing as they actually beat Moderna to market, it is safe to assume it was similarly swift. To achieve this, both companies used an entirely new genre of bio-technology (mRNA), never before used in vaccine production, that recodes human cells to become pathogen-producers in the hope that our immune systems will recognise this natively produced pathogen and mount a lasting response. This completely novel approach was then tested in clinical trials run by Pfizer and Moderna themselves before being given rapid and emergency use authorisation by each countries’ regulatory bodies based on data prepared and presented, again, by the pharmaceutical companies themselves.
“95% effective” declared headlines around the world in 2020. Did people know, at the time, that such headlines were based entirely on the word of the manufacturers themselves who stood to make billions of dollars if they could be the first to bring a Covid vaccine to market? The CEO of Pfizer, a company with a record of misrepresenting trial data, even publicly claimed his vaccine to be 100% effective in stopping transmission - a figure which ended up being far closer to 0% than 100%.
From creation of these vaccines to their mass-injection into billions of arms was a matter of months. Not long after, laws were being enacted worldwide that sought to penalise and shame anyone who didn’t want to take these products, effectively relegating them to a lower level of citizenship. The United States was particularly stringent, with several states seeing employees fired from their jobs and college students expelled for refusing the jab. California briefly mandated them as a condition of entry into schools but, thankfully, it was eventually rescinded.
All of this is manifestly insane. To take a completely new biotechnology, created and tested in record time by pharmaceutical companies who stood to make billions from their claims of what the product might do rather than what it actually did do, and to coerce it into billions of people for the sake of a cold virus whose lethality was mostly a figment of media imagination is, quite simply, an utterly deranged thing to do. Quite aside from all the rights and freedoms you are trampling into the dirt, there is no substitute for time in testing any medical product, especially one never before used in this manner and on this scale. The arrogance of assuming that all potential side-effects would be apparent for a brand new technology after just a few months was and is breath-taking. The only reason it, along with the wider Covid response, was accepted was due to the spectacular culture of fear that was created and maintained by an unholy alliance of State and media and the consequent meekness and sycophantic obedience it engendered in the population.
However, it is notable now that as that culture of fear recedes the kind of scepticism and scrutiny that was abandoned at the start of the Pandemic is slowly returning. Headlines abound, not with mythical declarations of vaccine efficacy that amounted to little more than free pharmaceutical advertisement, but with the kind of questioning and reflection that went missing for three years.
“Was Sweden right about Covid all along?” asks the Telegraph, as if it were waking up from a weekend bender and trying to piece together what led to its apartment being ransacked and despoiled. “COVID lockdowns will have years, if not lifetimes of harm on some children” declares a member of Ireland’s National Public Health Emergency Team who might have said this back when it could have curtailed the harm rather than after it.
This sentiment and the resulting interrogation of our approaches will only grow from here as the sheer lunacy of our actions can finally be considered in a panic-free environment. Hangovers will be common place.
What is most interesting, at least to me, is the political weapon it offers to certain well-placed figures who may use it to seek political gain. The remarkable audacity of our Covid response, the almost cartoonish evilness of it, now presents an extremely useful political target.
Several figures are well placed to take advantage. Elon Musk is already being cast as a kind of hero figure who spent billions of his own money to free Twitter and return free speech to the internet without which, it is thought, the kind of reappraisal of Covid currently taking place would be impossible. Ron DeSantis, the Governor of Florida who turned against lockdowns and mask mandates in the summer of 2020 and never forced or coerced the vaccines on his citizens is a favourite for the Republican Presidential nomination in 2024, already polling higher in some places than Donald Trump. His rejection of the prevailing Covid hysteria has positioned him strongly now that the rest of the world is catching up. People tend to like freedom and DeSantis seems to be selling it.
Also well placed is Robert F. Kennedy Jr. who, through his advocacy for proper vaccine oversight for nearly two decades, had already positioned himself as a prominent leader in this area long before Covid. The “anti-vaxx” label that, for so long, was used to dismiss and ridicule him may quickly become a badge of honour as the faltering Covid vaccine narrative threatens to spill over into other previously trusted platforms. His position is bolstered by his work during Covid, in particular a best-selling denunciation of Chief Covid Hysteria Officer, Anthony Fauci. He also has an advantage Ron DeSantis does not - he is a member of a strong political dynasty. His uncle, John F. Kennedy, was the President most dissenters see as having aligned with the growing anti-establishment narrative while his father, Robert F. Kennedy Sr., was set to pick up that mantle before his assassination. All of this leaves RFK Jr. on the cusp of announcing his own Presidential run, potentially seeking to wrestle the Democratic nomination from a sitting President. That he would even consider such an audacious move tells you much of the headwind he feels is behind him and the wider movement.
And it is clear to see why. Not since the Nazis came to embody evil itself and offered hard-nosed strongmen like Winston Churchill a clear path to power and ultimate glory has there been such an obvious malevolence against which to set oneself up in opposition. The harsh lockdowns that plundered economies, the closed school systems that abandoned children, the cruelty of care home management that isolated and neglected their residents, the shuttering of health care systems and the disastrous impact on wider health, the forced masking of the whole population, and the manipulative and coercive vaccine programme that is now drowning in its own failure - all of it was so ham-fisted and blatant that it seems designed to be opposed by righteous hero figures.
Even the ostensible perpetrators of these crimes are like B-movie villains. Chief among them is the Chairman of the World Economic Forum, Klaus Schwab, with his outlandish bad guy costume and the kind of thick German accent beloved of post-war movies that were overly comfortable with exploiting anything that could be associated with the Nazis in order to invest characters with pantomime menace. His posturing arrogance and sweeping declarations on how every aspect of our lives should be run makes him seem more suited to a James Bond nemesis than the leader of some stuffy political thinktank.
All of this is manna for those who seek to position themselves in opposition to such clichés of evil. If various leaders and apparatchiks around the world saw Covid as the perfect bogeyman to use to control the population and increase their own power then it may be nothing compared to the bogeyman they ended up turning themselves into and against which others can now set themselves to achieve perhaps even greater power. For those of us on the side-lines merely watching this drama unfold, it might be worth considering whether these arriving White Knights, no matter how virtuous their intentions seem, have any greater substance than the ones they seek to replace.
Are White Knights virtuous because of the colour of their armour or are they all much the same underneath? Time will tell.
Thanks for reading Ragged Lines! Subscribe for free to receive new posts and support my work.
I don't think any of these "white knights" realise what's coming.
There isn't enough money in existence to meet the legal stampede for vaccine damage compensation that is all but inevitable.
It really is all playing out like a movie, with hugely exaggerated characters in the lead roles. Maybe this is all predictive programming. And yeah, enormous politicians pushing their weight around on the world stage doesn't ever seem to be a good thing. Although I do think Trump stayed this deluge of nonsense for a time. But now it's on us in full force. Hopefully we'll choose to respond by strengthening local communities rather than seeking out a political messiah. It seems a surer route to take.