‘As we survey the current political, social and cultural landscape of Australia, we see that this pandemic has perhaps irrevocably changed who we are as a people and a nation.
Our national anthem boasts that “we are one and free”. However, the reality is we are anything but “one and free” right now.
The nation is as divided as we’ve ever seen it, not just with State borders closed so tight that it almost seems like you need a visa to get into parts of your own country but Australians are attacking other Australians on the basis of whether or not they’ve had a medical procedure that has only been provisionally approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration.
And “free”? What, with lockdowns, curfews, restrictions on gatherings, vaccine mandates for work, vaccine mandates for shopping, restrictions on GPs prescribing treatments, restrictions on leaving and entering the country? To paraphrase Darryl Kerrigan of The Castle, “you’ve got to be dreaming!”
Veteran journalist Chris Uhlmann summed up the situation in an opinion piece a few months ago. I want to quote the article at length because it is the best analysis I’ve read that so aptly describes the collective insanity that has captured our country:
So conditioned by fear are Australians to accepting the notion that COVID-19 is equivalent to the plague, the majority have learned to love Big Brother and hate dissenters…
… our pursuit of the fool’s errand of COVID Zero has seen us level every liberty, destroy educations and livelihoods and shut ourselves off from the world.
… it took us 230 years, but we finally managed to perfect the prison colony. We have even invented a perverse new “Covese” lexicon where “freedoms” are not rights, but gifts bestowed by premiers and where the police complain of “illegal family gatherings”.
Among the most depressing aspects of this supine acceptance of rank authoritarianism is the role of the media. Much of it has become a cheer squad for the blunt instrument of lockdowns and a moral hall monitor that polices thought crimes. The same organs that ritually hyperventilate about the detention of asylum seekers are the loudest voices in advocating imprisoning entire states.
Some lockdown fetishists appear to be planning to make shutdowns a lifestyle. There are sage warnings from “experts” not to pin our hopes of liberation on high rates of vaccination, for their perfect future to be realised restrictions must be as endemic as the disease.
This is Wuhan syndrome. The Economist has noted that the only countries persisting with a COVID elimination strategy are islands and dictatorships. We are now both.
Uhlmann’s assessment is not just the rantings of someone fed up with being stuck at home for too long. He’s actually got history and a lot of quality academic research on his side. The concept of mass psychosis and its connection with the rise of totalitarian regimes has long been studied by experts such as Carl Jung, Joost Merloo, Hannah Arendt and Frank Furedi to name but a few. In fact, the phenomenon has even been studied in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic. In the study COVID-19 and the Political Economy of Mass Hysteria, researchers concluded:
Negative information which is spread through mass media repetitively can affect public health negatively in the form of nocebo effects and mass hysteria. We argue that mass and digital media in connection with the state may have had adverse consequences during the COVID-19 crisis. The resulting collective hysteria may have contributed to policy errors by governments not in line with health recommendations…
Unfortunately, once a mass hysteria takes hold of the government, the amount of damage the hysteria can inflict to life and liberty surges as the state’s respect for private property and basic human rights is limited. The violation of basic human rights in the form of curfews, lockdowns, and coercive closure of business has been amply illustrated during the COVID-19 crisis.
We have seen periods of mass insanity before, including during the infamous witch hunts in Europe and the United States that occurred in the 16th and 17th centuries, and in many nations that devolved in despotic regimes throughout the 20th century.
In his seminal work, The Rape of the Mind, the aforementioned Merloo noted:
… the totalitarian systems of the 20th century represent a kind of collective psychosis. Whether gradually or suddenly, reason and common human decency are no longer possible in such a system: there is only a pervasive atmosphere of terror, and a projection of “the enemy,” imagined to be “in our midst.” Thus society turns on itself, urged on by the ruling authorities.
A very informative animated explainer by After Skool on this concept can be found in the YouTube video below. I challenge you to watch it and see whether or not the concepts and conclusions it comes to around mass insanity are not relevant to the world and, sadly, country we live in today.
So the question is: what do we do about it?
I am by no means any sage that can point us out of this mess but, as you might have seen at the end of the After Skool video, other great minds have contemplated such questions in different eras where the many seem to have fallen for a delusion, which can also be termed The Lie.
It seems then that there are five key steps to defeat The Lie:
- Get your own life in order and live free of The Lie.
- Spread the truth to counter The Lie.
- Ridicule the Elites who are behind The Lie.
- Join a movement that fosters a culture of truth within a society that is dominated by The Lie. (This is exactly what I am attempting to do with the Nation First newsletter.)
- Peaceful action by as many people as possible who have not succumbed to The Lie.
We should contemplate how each of us can follow these five steps if we are to save our country and restore true freedom to its peoples.’https://nationfirst.substack.com/p/are-we-living-in-an-insane-world?token=eyJ1c2VyX2lkIjo0MjUyOTI1MiwicG9zdF9pZCI6NDIzNzM3MTgsIl8iOiJvN0ZoWCIsImlhdCI6MTYzMzgwOTIyMywiZXhwIjoxNjMzODEyODIzLCJpc3MiOiJwdWItNDU0MTgyIiwic3ViIjoicG9zdC1yZWFjdGlvbiJ9.lfeXIGevuy6sO9BUeZa_jHpih9pWV7lfAC-lUgi_3ew