I don’t consider myself a pessimist. I have a wide range of response, from joy to despair, and often I am optimistic because it is simply more interesting. I osscilate quite a bit. I am pessimstic about our medical system as practiced in USA. It seems Canadians and the UK are smarter than we are and yet I worry that the Canadian Trudeau and the Dictator Putin have much in common with Donald Trump. There are degrees of difference and similarity which changes my views from day to day. Dr. Fauchi, who heads the NIH, I declare is a total fraud. He was in control of the AIDS epidemic and he is in control of the response to the current Covid crisis. He is a master of deception. In the 80’s I heard a doctor tell a group of gay men to take the experimental drugs for they should be willing to sacrifice their lives to science. I rejected this science. In those days, gay men had no civil rights, and much to lose by coming out. I never got tested for the virus, I never took a drug, and I made up my own mind about who I related to and how. The State is not a partner in such negotiations. But for others, who took the experimental drugs, there were agonizing mistakes. Many of those deaths I believe were produced by Big Pharma and blatant homophobia. I also knew of a friend, Bobby, who had been mis-diagnosed with AIDS but luckily refused the Medical Protocol. Ten years ago, it was recognized that the symptoms he had, Karposi Sarcoma, was clearly not caused by the HIV virus but is a form of herpes. This discovery came twenty years after the fact but informed me of how epicemics and pandemics are socially constructed, and are not following a schedule based on solid facts or evidence. A syndrome is a collection of symptoms, statistics, metaphors, and false assumptions. But do the syndromes change? No, they are frozen through the massive delusion of professionals who do what they are told for fear of losing thier license . We ,who resisted treatments, and took personal responsibility for our health, rather than defending against viruses with risky drugs, are still alive. I have great respect for my immune system. It is much smarter than I am. And certainly much smarter than anyone with a medical degree, who know nothing about nuturition, ecology, or mind. These are not taught in medical school. There are smart doctors who are very critical of medicine as practiced and they are treated with contempt and punitive measures. We need a mix of short term and long term but we have thrown away all caution and this rides upon rigid heirarchies of vast assymetries of power. I’m not hopeful in the short term but I am optimistic in the long term. We can learn from mistakes. As the current culture wars around Covid are minimized by the rising threat of nuclear war we can sense many resonances between these tragic melodramas. I think these two debacles have much in common. They are world events, complex and unstable, that are being treated as if there was a quick fix that can preserve an unjust status quo.
I agree. Pessimism turns into self fullflling prophecies and covers up a deep nihislism. We all go through this, if we are lucky. On the other side of that ocean of nihilsm is an awakening process that I expect will be unmet by most persons. It is true that we live for convenience. Unearned wealth is dangerous and even more dangerous is unearned pleasures. We want that dopomine hit right now. Deep pleasure comes out of work and effort. We want instant gratification and we suffer enormously from the pursuit of shallow pleasures. I don’t miss, because of mandates, the opportunity to socialize with vaccinated people in thier cafes and theatres. I find many of them are very shallow people who look down on those with a different view of things. With a good internet connection I can commune with strangers ( as I do now) and if the internet crashes I have a house full of good books I have yet to read. I will use candle light. Solitude and a large book collection is the antidote to great suffering.
I have very little confidence that I can change anyone’s ignorance except for my own.
Again, I register a distinct difference. I am a college drop out. I am not, however, self-taught, exactly. I got my higher education through weekend workshops and life experience. I have worked with many persons with PHDs who were in low-level mangagement positions like myself. I had a similar postion within society but without their debts. I am referencing USA educational system which is different from other places. Education and Medicine are in a mess. Joining forcees with small groups who share concerns seems to me an alternate way of education, an Invisible College emerges, as more vibrant networks happen. Knowledge is obsolesced so quickly, now, that going for an advanced degree is not ecological for everyone. There are some curriculums that you can make up on your own. I come from a tradition of do it your self.
That is true of some of humanity but Helen Keller, Shakespeare, and Maria Callas were humans, too. And there are the nobodys like Emily Dickinson, who wrote her great poems in secret, and died unknown. I am drawn to these folks as they are the outsiders who created a world of their own.
And when lemmings…and entertain hope…and a little spark… what do you want to have happen, now?
I urge all of us to contemplate health rather than disease control as a new way of orienting to the future of nature. I seek and I find ways of tuning into Nature/Self. These ways are very available now to those who are searching. Seek and ye shall find. I commune with the interiors of a future humanity who have have succeeded where we have failed. Even our failure is a learning experience that we should celebrate.