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We’ve moved on since the 1916 pandemic though. Better science and medical advances. There could have been less deaths.
The pandemic was late 1918 to early 1920. Beyond that, yes the technologies have improved, but the public's reaction suggests that as our technical means of addressing the problem has improved, our emotional capacity for dealing with it has atrophied in the last 100 years.The last pandemic came at the end of a world war that shattered the self-confidence of the West and during a post-war economic depression. (Now sometimes referred to as The Forgotten Depression.) Yet the public on the whole remained sober and balanced.Now each day is greeted with blaring headlines and cackling hysteria and fights over masks and social distancing. It is ironic that a nation with such technological savvy should be so emotionally childish.
But regardless - there could have been less deaths.
Not likely as our scientific knowledge has evolved during this pandemic. You may recall that Dr, Fauci - to cite the most famous example - at first said the pandemic would not be a matter of great moment and that the regular flu - for which there are about 3000 deaths each year - would be the bigger problem. This while also stating that he did not believe that masks were necessary.That science has advanced does not mean that it is omniscient. The science on this has developed and, in any case, it has so far too simple in its application of its principles. It might like to treat men as lab rats in a grand social experiments, but human frailty was apt to make even the most full-proof science of only limited utility in the management of the illness.
Asian countries reduced their deaths through early test and track, distancing and use of masks. This was based on scientific observations and what was already known about virus transmission. US CDC waited until there was more evidence.
Waiting for masses of evidence in time critical situations where people’s lives are at stake isn’t clever.
On the second point, the data changed over time. The advice changed with it.As far as other countries are concerned, it is an apples to oranges comparison. Differences in culture as well as the timing of when the disease first appeared in their countries all played a part.In the United States, with its' strong cultural emphasis on liberty and individualism, the odds were that government advice on matters like social distancing and the like were going to be more strongly resisted. Hence the absolutely absurd controversy over mask wearing.(This not to mention the fact - also forgotten - that under the American constitutional system the rules on social distancing and public health generally, could only be enforced by state and local governments. The Federal government could issue whatever guidelines it wished, it had zero authority to force states and localities to implement them. Thus, why South Dakota never had any lockdown at the state level while California went all in - and even then court challenges abound.)Throw in that, as you may recall, Italy - to cite one example - did far worse. Thus any generalization about any given country or countries - let alone American states and localities - handled the pandemic must be a wild oversimplification. The variables impacting the pandemic being almost infinite.
There are differences in how much evidence different cultures require. Western scientists require a stronger evidence base.
Again, an overgeneralization. Japan can hardly be called less science based and Taiwan fared far better in the pandemic than most countries. The issue was as much culture, timing and forewarning as the evidentiary standards that respective scientific communities required.
Those cultures just prioritise differently and have different evidence thresholds to make decisions.
Yup, part of my point if not my whole point. You are simply stating the obvious.My other point being that American culture has taken a childish and self-absorbed turn that does it no credit. They worship science as a god, failing to grasp that as a product of fallible humans it is fallible. They therefore expect more of it than it can reasonably be expected to deliver on a consistent basis.Worse still, Americans have come to expect perfect safety and happy endings and are thus routinely surprised that such things are not possible in an imperfect world of imperfect beings. So they take for granted happiness and what they have and act panicky and offended when things do not work out well.It is a childish culture. This in contrast to the generation that came out of a world war and a depression and a pandemic all at once. They were not perfect, but they had a greater appreciation for the gifts they had been given and were not driven by a sense of entitlement. They knew how much worse things can always get and did not live under the delusion that they were entitled to more good fortune than they got in life.Hence my argument that it is time for Americans to grow up. Indeed, it is long overdue - though redundant proof that progress is NOT foreordained.
Well an expectation of perfect safety and happy endings isn’t Necessarily a bad thing as long as you understand the problems holistically and the limitations and practicalities. today, we have a society where people can expect to live a long and fulfilling lives.
That is the point and value of studying history. It is a reminder that things are not always as they have been and it teaches the limits of the human condition. This then being an antidote to promethean pretensions and exaggerated expectations.This teaching us in our depths of desolation, never to despair and in our height of hopes ever to be sober. Certainly most of all to not go into fits of hair pulling panic when things don't work out as we expect that they should.
Climate change similar too. There’s more which can be done and more is being done.
Yes, because of course, as we know, the Earth has an on/off switch that we can manipulate at will...Kind of doubt it - and the law of unintended consequences always pertains. (See also the power failures in California. Born of efforts to shift to green technologies and away from fossil fuels and thus save the planet. They just never anticipated heatwaves. As the governor admitted. Hmmmm.)Suffice to say, you have just demonstrated my point to the nth degree. Not every problem has a solution. Rather some problems are just difficulties that we must manage as best as we imperfectly can.Suffice to say, don't be surprised if you end up terribly disappointed.
Well I guess it just depends what you prioritise.
It’s also human nature that people generally aren’t happy with what they have and want more.
Well, at the moment, people in California would like electric power and air conditioning. Suddenly regulating the temperature of the planet seems less important to them.This being the flaw in your second point. Yes, people - especially people who have not been raised with a degree of self-control - want more. The more pertinent question being ought they to want what they want?This being essential to maturity and prudence and the setting of realistic priorities as well as separating needs from mere wants.
Yes they want everything. It’s human nature. Humans have always been like that although some situations have meant humans have had to adapt. But you can’t expect the current generation who have never lived through a world war or civil war to behave the same way as a generation that has.
Which again is where the value of studying history is to be found. Generations will tend to vary and accept and reject ethical norms according to their passions. The point being that those that learn the lessons of the past are more apt to internalize those lessons and thus not repeat the errors of the past.The generation that survived two world wars, the Korean War and the Great Depression swore that their children would never have to endure what they endured. Unfortunately, they neglected to teach their children the moral lessons they had learned - and so the 60s and 70s were born. A generation that took peace and plenty for granted.Chaos followed until an exhausted people settled into the relative peace and prosperity of the 80s, 90s and early 2000s. Rinse and repeat.Bottom line, at some point this generation will grow up - but not until much has been lost. The pendulum will swing back and forth - until it no longer can.As the old song goes, "Don't it always seem to go, that you don't know what you've got till its gone." A theme that perfectly describes this generation.
As I said it’s human nature and why patterns keeps repeating itself As you describe. Even if it’s taught - you can’t pass on exactly what someone who experienced it first hand felt. In addition, humans are selfish by nature and will always serve their own interests first meaning history will easily get pushed aside if it serves them better.
Human nature it may be, but we are more than our nature. In fact, as Aristotle pointed out, it is in our nature to transcend our nature. Raise a baby wolf to be the best wolf it can be - it will still be a wolf. Raise a human baby to be the best human it can be, and it may cure cancer or write sonnets.The problem is that you - and the culture you wallow in - take human nature to be that which happens spontaneously. You neglect that it is in our nature to transcend our nature - if only we muster the virtues necessary to that end.You take human nature as a given and ignore its deeper aspects. You need to read less Locke and Rousseau, and more Aristotle and Burke.
I’m more Locke than Burke I’m afraid.
That is the beginning of your errors - and how we got to where we are as a culture.
Perhaps but I am quite happy.
It is not a question of your happiness, but rather of whether you ought to be? To deliberately choose error is to wallow in the self-satisfaction that comes with the unsubstantiated bias. Thus how the culture is where it is now.
I don’t believe it is error. I believe in everyone’s individual happiness.
The culture where it is now is as a result of populism and a confused population. It is certainly not Locke.
On the first point, we were created to pursue virtue and in being virtuous we may find happiness. To do it the other way around is to put the cart before the horse, usually leading to decadance.Secondly, you miss the connection. Locke said that man is a basically diffidently social being and that government exists to deal with the "inconveniences in the state of nature." Make law then in conformance with natural rights and harmony will spontaneously follow.Want to see how that works in practice? See also the CHOP in Seattle. For that matter, see Portland, Chicago, et. al.Man is not spontaneously rational and social but only becomes so through a complex weave of culture, education, law, government and history. Stripped to "his naked shivering nature" and man becomes beast. The populist argument is that the "common man" is good and decent and the font of all virtue. That government is merely used by the powerful to oppress the masses and thereby promote their narrow interests and the expense of the common man. Thus do education, law, government, manners and morals - unless they sate the populist will - come to be seen as the tools of the oppressor.See the connection between Locke and populism. The main difference being that populism, beyond assuming the virtue of the common man, has no deeper analysis of man's nature. Thus, for example, populism can offer no explanation for how, once the common man is brought to office he can remain "the common man." It simply has no theoretical answer to such basic questions.Still, Locke made the mistake that in the intellectual precursor for populism. Indeed, populism might best be described as a decayed, vapid Lockeanism.
Those are unintended consequences. The Burkes approach isn’t perfect either. Burke’s approach promotes classism and benefits the elite. Ultimately, it gives less opportunities to those not born into elitism.
Elite represents a standard of excellence. When the word elite becomes a trendy epithet, you may assume that the culture is enraged by the very idea of excellence. As Churchill put it, "We are in the age when one man is as good as another - or better."In any case, you have an absurd idea of the way democracy works. In a democracy, properly understood, the people do not decide. Rather, they decide which elites shall decide. Indeed, the more complex things you want government to do, the more dependent upon elites you become. Bottom line, whether you recognize it or not, you are the very populist that you were deploring. See where Locke gets you?
Actually Locke believed in Government and structure and the rule of law as a basic structure and as a social contract. Elites are necessary I agree but everyone should be given the opportunity to become an “elite”. It should not be something you either are or are not born into.
Never said that Locks did not believe in government, but his was a mechanistic view of it. He did not see the organic connection between government and human nature and thus government became, in effect, disposable.For how that works in practice see again the recent experience in Seattle with the so-called CHOP. Man dispensed with government, the government obliged, the Hobbesian state of nature to follow as the corpses piled up and the buildings burned down. Bluntly, man is not the spontaneously social creature Locke presumed. Rather as Aristotle and Burke understood, man's nature must be nurtured. To become that virtuous social being requires that man be marinated in a web of laws, customs, traditions, habits and institutions - political, governmental, social - in order to become that social being that Locke just magically assumed popped up.As to elites, there are two types. The historical and the meritocratic. This in the British system being even formalized in the existence of hereditary - read historical - and life - read meritocratic - peers. There is nothing in what I - or for that matter Burke - that argues against that.Indeed, both are essential. The meritocratic rewarding the best, the hereditary protecting those institutions that make man's social nature possible. Indeed, minus the latter, the requisite respect for institutions that rewards the meritocrat is apt to be lacking. The meritocrat's achievements as likely to be plundered as rewarded in a system with no respect for tradition and order as embodied in the hereditary elite.
I don’t completely agree with either Hobbes or Locke. I think in reality, people are different and won’t be the same.
At this point you are howling into a hurricane. See again Seattle, Portland, NYC and so on. Hobbes understood human nature far better than Locke. Burke understood better than both of them how to shape government to balance freedom and virtue given that nature.
99 percent of people would understand the reference and what i mean by elites so i have no problem explaining it if you genuinely dont know but if you are just planning on playing some sort of trolling game im not interested.
No I’m asking you which elites are trying to rewrite it to fit their agenda? I wasn’t asking for your definition of elite. And I’m not trolling, it’s a serious question.
ok well thats cool, i just get so bored of anon trolls here... i wasn't actually refering to one or more members of the elites inparticular though as they all seem to act pretty much as one anyway... if you want specific names you may as well just look at the yearly davos invite list.
That’s very broad. Any particular examples of elites rewriting history?
well if you was in the uk churhill was taught in schools to be a real British hero whilst the tommypandy incicent and bombing of dresden were erased... to that end kids grew up thinking tories were here to reprazent workers and everyday people rather than their corporate sponsors and old school mates... ofcourse being anon i have no idea where you are from so this might not make any sense to you but you did push for specifics
Well everyone would have bias including elites and there will always be debate in terms of interpretation. Hence why we elect which elites govern us.
we dont elect them... they sit way above government... im not sue you understand which group im referencing but you can start with the house of windsor or the rothschilds if you want to google it
We elect the decision makers who choose which of those elites or which combination of elites you refer to they base their decisions on.
that is so far the wrong way round it makes me think i wasted my time
So what’s your belief?
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