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Dan C: The Comfort of Fear

This is an article by Dan C, whose Twitter page is @SirDanofC.

For over a century now, every generation has grown slightly more fearful of life, with innate levels of courage having been salami-sliced from birth as a result of the efforts of the nanny state. Until recently, I had wearily considered this an unfortunate side-effect of modern life with all its comforts and lack of jeopardy; nevertheless, perhaps the arrival of a gregarious, optimistic Prime Minister, together with our unshackling from the European Union and its endless regulation, would at least slow this process down. Of course, the pre-WW1 halcyon days of the cavalier spirit were gone for good, but we might be able to gravitate towards a middle ground. The optimist in me, like everyone else, had not seen Coronavirus coming.

Yesterday I posted something on Facebook that I had heard on a podcast. It went like this:

“If you are aged 15 or under, your chances of dying from Coronaviris are 5.3 million to one. You’re statistically more likely to die from putting your trousers on.”

Now it’s possible that the precise numbers were out and that I had misremembered 15 instead of 14, or 5.3 million instead of 5.1 million, but I didn’t bother to check as the underlying point remained. The purpose of my post was to bring back a degree of semblance to those who seemed to have suffered complete meltdowns over this situation and especially when it came to the subject of sending ones children back to school. Naturally, I received an influx of responses almost immediately and several were from one person in particular who I had anticipated would bite at this statement.

“5 to 10 people die every year putting their socks on. The socks didn’t then go on to infect or kill their vulnerable family members though. Same with trousers,” he wrote.

Well okay (although one might argue that the dodgy family genes that lead to such a catastrophic loss of hand-eye co-ordination will do more damage in the long run). It got better though:

“So as there are roughly 10.5 million children under 15 in the UK, 2 kids will die using those statistics. Only 2. Collateral damage?”

This is the sort of glib response (akin to “so you WANT people to die then?) that has essentially hijacked all conversation and debate since the start of the Coronavirus outbreak. I didn’t respond, partly because I didn’t have the energy for an argument with a friend (at least Twitter rows tend to be anonymous) and quite frankly, what does one say to this? That we shouldn’t send out children back to school ever again in case one child happens to pass away from any illness or disease? That we should continue in lockdown until we cure death itself?

My concern is that this bizarre way of thinking is commonplace right now for many parents. Locked inside their houses for weeks on end, soaking up an endless stream of Netflix programs, mawkish Instagram feeds and daily Government briefings, convinced that Black Death Mk II has landed outside their front door, paid by the state to stop working and lapping up every rainbow-based hashtag that emerges from ‘our NHS’, all sense of balance and perspective has vanished. With such an unprecedented paradigm shift, this new state of heightened safety has led many to consider their view on illness and risk for the very first time in their lives and unfortunately the concept of critical thinking has been found lacking. Real life, which has been slowly eroded for many decades, has suddenly been switched off completely overnight and the worst of it is that most people don’t seem to care.

The scary part of all of this is that if the adults in the room have suddenly lost their desire to engage in the outside world, to have meaningful human interaction, to take risks (don’t get me started on the definition of ‘risk’) and to live their lives in the fullest possible way then what chance do children stand? After all, you can’t miss what you’ve never had.

Historians will look back in bewilderment at this period, noting that it took no more than a month during the spring of 2020 for fearlessness to completely evaporate in society. In its place is a comfortable sense of fear.

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16 thoughts on “Dan C: The Comfort of Fear

  1. Hear, hear!

    There is an excellent book by Matt Ridley “The Rational Optimist” that attempts to address similar points.

    PS: Couldn’t agree more on the critical thinking point either. The population at large seems to stick to the MSM and believe everything they say; even though there are often several conflicting reports in the same edition.

  2. Don’t ever misunderstand how media work. People seek out the media to support the views they already hold They believed it before they heard it. The media just reinforce.

  3. excellent,was walking down the street few days ago a middle aged woman spots me and obviously realized i was a carrier of the deadly virus,she immediately jumped into a strangers garden awaiting my passing,as i got closer she raised her arm and took a long drag from the cigarette she was smoking,how i laughed at the irony

  4. Just the planned end result of the feminisation, sissification, HSE orientated, nannying, risk adverse, pussyfooting, leftie-leaning, responsibility dodging, touchy-feely culture we have become along with a lack of faith (not religious in itself, just faith in general) in yourself.

    Just give me facts and I will decide my actions.

    I am not going to be forced to hide away under the bed just because you are scared. You hide if you want, I won’t force you to go out but don’t force me to stay in.

    Scared of dying so give up on living.

    I’ll go with quality of life and die early rather than live the last 20-40 years of life locked in a room with others the same doped up on pills and with major illnesses slowly killing me. That is not living, you just are not dead yet. Maybe it is being a biker or having fast car or working in a “dangerous” industry I’ve seen decimated by HSE department time and time again that makes me this way. Or just being a non-PC old fashioned male (but that said my wife feels the same way so it can’t be that).

    Life is about taking risks, that has been forgotten.

    I remember years ago seeing cartoon titled Victorian Risk assessment. 2 obvious explorer types are looking out to see from a cliff and the first one says “That looks dangerous.”. The 2nd on says “Let’s go”. Now we couldn’t discover the Isle of Wight.

    Ted Nugent summed it up well a few days ago:

    “Why do I have to stay home just because you are scared? How about you stay home… you stay in your house indefinitely, you wear a mask, you socially distance yourself from me, you avoid restaurants, you avoid baseball games, you stay off the roads, you avoid malls and beaches and parks, you believe the made up death numbers, you believe the media hype, you get your toxic vaccine while avoiding vitamin C, sunshine and the things God gave us to actually heal, –

    I’m done playing your dumb game. We are not “all in this together.” I’m not wearing your dumb tin foil hat anymore. I’m no longer going to be a prisoner of your fear. I’m no longer staying in my house or catering to you because you are scared. I’m not wearing a mask and I’m not staying 6 feet away from you anymore because I’m not afraid of you. You are not my enemy and if I get sick, it’s not because of you, it’s because of me and my system, which not only have I been addressing for quite some time, but I also know how to treat if I get sick.

    This virus (or whatever it is) is already circulating. Millions of people have already encountered it, as it’s been circulating around the world probably since last September. You WILL have to confront this thing, if you haven’t already. There is no way around it, unless you lock yourself up in your house and it somehow doesn’t manage to hop on some mail or some groceries that you ordered online. Your fear is not an excuse to destroy America. Your fear is not my fear and your fear does not have the right to interfere with my life, my job, my income or my future as a free American citizen. So if you’re scared, you can just put your tin foil hat on, or even wrap foil all around your whole body – or around your whole house if you wish – but please keep your fear contained to your little corner of the world and don’t contaminate me or my family or my Country.

  5. I think you’ve got it wrong in the last paragraph. It isn’t fearlessness we have recently lost. That went long ago.

    What we have lost is our ability to accept any variation in the risk associated with living life. Should we accept the risk that those two teenagers might die that we all live normal lives? Of course. Not doing so degrades the quality of life of millions of people by imposing unnatural and long term constraints.

    The Equality Act 2010 sets out that discriminatory action is illegal in all circumstances except where it is a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate aim. This test should be applied to the lockdown too because it would lead to an assessment of what is proportionate and what might otherwise result.

    There is now a soft underbelly to our society which could have many unintended consequences. Telling nature the way it is going to be is asking for trouble.

  6. My response to parents who are too scared to send their kids back to school is to ask why they’d continue putting their kids at risk of dying from a road accident or flu if the Coronavirus hadn’t happened. If you don’t want your kids to be at risk of death then you should have stayed childless.

  7. Great article.
    What is most distressing is the inability of very large numbers of individuals to think rationally. I don’t know what the main reasons are … but the hyping of an issue by the media with the attendant emotional investment by everyone else seems to make it impossible to look at and analyse hard data and form an independent opinion. The climate change debate has had this problem for decades. The fear for children going back to school is just the latest example.

  8. So public/media praise the NHS and essential workers who step up and keep things going (like low wage grocery store staff). but when the teachers unions/activists (suspect many teachers would go back) are asked to step up and refuse they also back them instead of shaming them. One suspects it’s the lack of risk of losing pay or even their job entirely that drives the teachers and the chance to ‘beat’ the govt., why they are allowed to get away with it is the puzzling aspect. It’s a strange world we live in indeed.

  9. The government wanted you scared to make you comply with their totally over the top response to the virus. There are leaked docs from the SAGE meetings advising how to effectively use psychological warfare on our citizens to get compliance.

    About the time I was saying to the TV screen (and getting no response) – why don’t you put the risk in perspective, and show who is dying and who isn’t – SAGE was telling ministers to “raise the level of personal threat”. In part that was lying by omission.

    I think that Bunter now realises that turning the fear off is very difficult, and perhaps slowly understanding the train-wreck he has created, is going to regret the whole “project fear” exercise. It didn’t help that he was rather ill at a crucial time and those left to cope, appeared not too be able too.

    Could it be the real fear level will rise in the coming months, after the phoney war we are in has ended, and the level of economic collapse becomes clear? – I hope not.

    It seems to me, and what do I know? that the strategy now is to hide the fact that we didn’t need to “lockdown” so hard, while hopefully getting the economy moving enough to stop its complete collapse. BUT given that nearly everyone involved in giving advice is/has been on the Gates payroll, we are being guided towards waiting for a vaccine to show up.

    I agree with the premise of the article. I was optimistic before Covid came that we would see better times with Brits moving away from the suffocating cartel of the EU to find some self-respect again. The events of the last few weeks and the lack of grip and grasp in the UK populace makes me doubt we would have made it. I should have known really because it was largely the young who wanted to continue as a part of the Fourth Reich – and that isn’t an anti-German comment, merely a statement of the reality.

  10. I don’t think it’s fear.

    It’s worse. It’s dumb acceptance of whatever we are told to do by someone in authority on the television. As a society, we have lost our minds, and are now like sheep.

    If it was just fear, we could learn to be brave again. But, having lost our minds, I don’t know how we can regain them…

  11. Death is inevitable…

    All-Cause Mortality Surveillance 21 May 2020 – Week 21 report (up to week 20 data)

    In week 20 2020, statistically significant excess all-cause mortality by week of death was observed overall and by age group in the 15-64 and 65+ year olds and in all regions in England, through the EuroMOMO algorithm. In the devolved administrations, no statistically significant excess all-cause mortality for all ages was observed for Northern Ireland or Wales in week 20. Statistically significant excess all-cause mortality for all ages was observed for Scotland in week 18

    All-cause death registrations (ONS), England and Wales – In week 19 2020, an estimated 12,657 all-cause deaths were registered in England and Wales (source: Office for National Statistics). This is a decrease compared to the 17,953 estimated death registrations in week 18 2020

    Excess all-cause (EuroMOMO) mortality in subpopulations, UK

    – In week 20 2020 in England, statistically significant excess mortality by week of death above the upper 10 z-score threshold was seen overall. Statistically significant excess mortality was seen by age group in the 15-64 and 65+ year olds and sub nationally (all ages) in all regions (North East, North West, Yorkshire & Humber, East & West Midlands, East of England, London and South East & West regions) after correcting GRO disaggregate data for reporting delay with the standardised EuroMOMO algorithm

    – In the devolved administrations, no statistically significant excess all-cause mortality for all ages was observed for Northern Ireland or Wales in week 20

    – Statistically significant excess all-cause mortality for all ages was observed for Scotland in week 18

    NI still zero excess deaths. I’d be interested in regional breakdown for Scotland, my hunch is excess mostly in Glasgow as high BAME there. Low BAME may be a factor in NI & Wales

    Why was this lockdown sceptic’s video removed from YouTube?

  12. I’m just back from Tesco where things are beginning to relax. People are passing within 2m of each other and there are even some groups of 3 people out shopping together. No honestly I’m not making this up.
    But the people in Tesco are not the ones we need to worry about. It is the 50-60% who are locked up at home watching TV news and soiling their pants who are going to be the problem. I read an article recently, in Spiked I think, that compared Covid-19 to an end of the world cult. When the end of the world fails to arrive, it causes such cognitive dissonance with the followers that they refuse to accept that the world isn’t going to end. They kick the can down the road. I suspect the pants-soilers now have their hopes pinned on the 2nd wave in order to satisfy their belief in the end of times.

    On the telly news tonight they showed a survey of who should have the final say in school reopening. About half of people thought parents or teachers should have the final say, but only a third thought scientists should have the final say. That makes no sense. It was the scientists that told them to go hide at home to escape death by covid-19, so why don’t they now believe the scientists when they say it’s safe to come out and send your children to school? My hypothesis is that they are now so terrified that they are not thinking rationally.
    Unwinding the covid-19 hysteria is going to be a lot more difficult than introducing it. I wonder if SAGE’s Der Sturmer subcommittee have come up with a way of convincing people that the covid-19 monster has gone. They haven’t shown much ability to think beyond a few weeks so I’m betting not.

  13. Funnily enough was talking about this with a friend recently and we both remarked on how much work had to be done to de-stigmatise AIDS/HIV with govt. campaigns and ‘celebrities’ being shown shaking hands with AIDS patients, or ‘victims’ as they were re-labelled.
    If that’s anything to go by it’s going to be a tough battle to ease the panic.
    It was a lesser issue with Mad Cow’s disease, but still recall a govt. minister force feeding his kids burgers on TV to show beef was safe to eat

  14. I agree to come extent, DGeezer. People have become increasingly addicted to drama and I think were sucked into this by playing the “isn’t it dreadful?!!” game. Unfortunately, when they realise their compliance has helped to make things genuinely dreadful, it will be a much less appealing drama and far too late.

  15. I think it ties in with the latest quarantining nonsense and Johnson’s stressing that the 2m rule holds, when there’s lots of scientific evidence that would let him relax it, which would help schools and businesses to open. This maintains the impression that there’s something to fear.
    The new quarantine regs for travellers makes so little sense, that I can only suspect it was thrown in for destructive purposes by Cummings, or it’s to maintain the terror so “they” can perpetrate whatever dastardly plan underlies this apparent nonsense.

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