An Analysis of the COVID19 Epidemic: Social, Economic, and Geo-Political Implications
Part 2: Notes from the Social Clinic
In Part 1 of An Analysis of the COVID19 Epidemic we examined medical, epidemiological, and scientific aspects, in the Medical Clinic. In Part 2 the social, economic, cultural, and geo-political implications are examined, in the Social Clinic.1
A fundamental goal, in both the Medical Clinic and the Social Clinic, is to determine the root cause of problems. Best treatment is based on best understanding of root cause. The disciplined problem-solving approach used in both Clinics involves imagination of an array of plausible hypotheses (possible explanations for what is going on). These hypotheses are then tested, starting with the hypotheses that are thought to be most important to test. Treatment decisions are then based on the hypothesis(es) that is best supported by the data.
In the case of the COVID19 epidemic, at least six hypotheses are imaginable and seem particularly important to consider:
According to this hypothesis, the COVID19 epidemic is a natural, unpreventable, spontaneously occurring event due to a random mutation that allowed a previously harmless bat virus to “jump” to humans. By working together (in communities, nationally, and internationally) we can figure out how to best deal with such an epidemic and either return afterwards to our previous existences (individually, in communities, nationally, and internationally); or, strengthened and informed by the COVID experience, we can seek to improve the way we have been doing things, individually, in communities, nationally, and internationally. For example, we could use this crisis as an opportunity to create new Social Arrangements and greater Social Beauty5 than ever before, including development of an altruistic Public Economy,11 vast Public Activity3 and other ways to increase social justice and stability.
This hypothesis is the same as Hypothesis 1 except that it postulates that the likelihood of a random mutation developing and hopping to humans has been considerably enhanced by several unfortunate, but correctible human practices (mostly corporate) that have placed great stress on ecosystems—e.g. corporate agricultural practices, corporate deforestation practices, reckless habitat destruction, excessive urbanization, etc., all of which have resulted in wildlife coming into abnormally close contact with humans. Hypothesis 2, which is likely true to a considerable extent, suggests that we might be able to prevent such zoonotic infections in the future, if we greatly change certain (mostly corporate) human practices. Hypothesis 2, like Hypothesis 1 envisions movement toward Social Beauty in the wake of the COVID epidemic, even during the epidemic (while most of us are stuck in our homes). Back to the concept of Social Beauty later.
Hypothesis 3 postulates that a spontaneous random event, the COVID epidemic (with or without contribution from ecosystem-damaging human/corporate practices), has fortuitously created an opportunity and acute motivation for a well-intentioned group of powerful global leaders (e.g. people like Bill Gates, George Soros, Henry Kissinger, leaders of financial institutions, major corporate leaders, US government leaders, and leaders of other nations, including Xi Jing Ping and Vladimir Putin) to combine forces, work together, and heroically and benevolently step in to rescue the world from not only COVID, but also impending climate catastrophe, terrorism, ongoing wars, nuclear threat, global financial collapse, social chaos and despair, refugee and immigration crises, and potential total collapse of civilization.
According to this hypothesis, these global leaders, all of whom are committed to the capitalist economic model (private sector capitalism, state capitalism, or a mixture) and will hereafter be referred to as the Corporate Consortium, or just Consortium, have been patiently staying on the sidelines, while they have watched incompetent leaders and dysfunctional governments (exemplified by Trump and the US government) create increasing chaos throughout the world, but now feel it is time for them to offer their competence, experience, international networks, technological know-how, and their wealth to rescue the world. They feel a “Responsibility to Protect (R2P)” the world from a global mess that has only been getting worse and is now in further crisis, due to COVID. In their view, they are a “force for good” and now is the time for their leadership, reluctantly, to take over. They believe that by working together—with Xi Jing Ping, Putin, Modi, and leaders in the USA, EU, UK taking the lead and working closely with leaders in the private sector (“public-private partnerships”)—they have the ability to “get things done”—stop terrorism, stop wars, stop COVID, create nuclear agreements, address the climate crisis, remedy the immigration/refugee mess, and bring about a level of global stability, prosperity, and social equality that the world has never seen before.
They feel it is their duty (even a moral obligation) to step in, with their “exceptional” abilities; and they are confident that they (their international, transnational Consortium of leaders), and probably they alone, can rescue the world from the huge current mess. They sense that a desperate planet, people and the earth itself, are eager for their “indispensable” leadership and will be grateful for implementation of the Consortium’s plans. They sense that what people most desperately want is stability and a dependable modest prosperity (even a lower-middle class income, if necessary, as long as it is dependable). For many years the Consortium has been working on well-intentioned plans to help re-organize global society. They have been ready to implement them at some point, if needed. The COVID epidemic has provided an opportune and necessary time, in their view.
Hypothesis 4 is the same as Hypothesis 3, except that it posits that the Corporate Consortium of powerful transnational leaders is far less altruistic than described above and, in fact, quite dangerous (whether the Consortium leaders realize it, or not). According to this hypothesis, this Consortium has long been planning a new way of organizing global society—a way that primarily benefits and serves them, but also “lifts all boats” (a little bit)—and that they have simply been waiting for the right time to take over the leadership of the world and implement their plans. The COVID epidemic has created that moment. According to this hypothesis, the Consortium might espouse altruism, compassion, democracy, freedom, brotherhood, justice, and equality; and might even believe their own rhetoric. But, their actions will fall far short of those promises. Instead, the new global society they wish to create will be characterized by authoritarianism, arrogance, ruthless austerity, shallow social philosophy, loss of individual liberty, enormous technological surveillance, suppression of dissent, even punishment for critical thinking, and gross social and financial inequality between the 0.01% (the Consortium and friends and their families) and the rest of the world’s population. It has great potential to be a kind of neo-fascist nightmare—a subtle one, possibly even an accidental fascism, compared to more obvious forms of fascism. It will be a kind of corporate fascism—corporate fascism “with neo-liberal characteristics.” “Accidental” in the sense that the Consortium’s leaders, rather than being deliberately nefarious (some of them, anyway), may genuinely believe they are doing the right thing, even though they are not. For example, many of the Consortium’s leaders may be well-meaning and genuinely philanthropic, but their lack of philosophical depth, their arrogance, their excessive infatuation with technology, their extensive mis-education, their lack of self-awareness, and other imbalances in the way they think and feel may predispose them to lead an “accidentally fascist” movement that they do not even realize is fascist.
Hypothesis 5 is the same as Hypothesis 4, except that it is even less gracious to the leaders of the Consortium. According to Hypothesis 5, the key leaders of the Consortium have considerable sociopathic tendencies and quite nefarious plans. They are not at all altruistic, nor interested in being so. They have little empathy or compassion, especially for the already poverty-stricken “non-people” of the world. People’s lives and health mean little to them. They are almost exclusively interested in power, wealth, control, and their own self-interest. They are very comfortable with ruthless austerity, mass surveillance, and martial law to maintain “order.” According to this Hypothesis, the Consortium has been making their nefarious plans for a long time, just waiting for an opportunity like the COVID epidemic to come along, and are now capitalizing on COVID fears to implement their plans. This may well include deliberate manipulation of the COVID epidemic (amplifying fears, perpetuating uncertainties) to make certain that it fully serves their purpose.
Hypothesis 6 is the same as Hypothesis 5, except that it posits that the Consortium deliberately created the COVID epidemic in the first place, to serve as a pretext for implementation of their global geo-political plans—i.e. they premeditatively manufactured this epidemic. According to this hypothesis, the Consortium either:
- bioengineered a novel coronavirus (which they secretly know is no more threatening than seasonal flu viruses) and released it in Wuhan (and possibly other locations), or
- the Consortium has deliberately and premeditatively created and hyped the notion that a naturally occurring new coronavirus (which has been naturally present during this season’s flu epidemic) is a major threat to Humanity (even though they secretly know that it is no more threatening than usual seasonal flu viruses.
Whether this virus was bio-engineered or they chose to hype an already existing naturally occurring virus, they have, in a pre-meditated fashion, deliberately whipped up COVID hysteria and are using it to justify implementation of their long-held plans. In that sense, the COVID epidemic is “preparing” populations to obediently accept “containment and surveillance measures” (including massive roll-out of 5G technology, as well as containment of critical thinking and expression) that will be features of the new global society they plan to create.
Other variations of Hypotheses 3-6 (particularly 6) are imaginable, but we will stop here. For further explanation of the Corporate Consortium—their make-up, their power, their wealth, and their possible plans—please see the Notes from the Social Clinic entitled, The Corporate Consortium.14,15
Incidentally, in the Social Clinic, the above hypotheses are not called “conspiracy theories,” they are called hypotheses, because that is what they are—possible explanations for what is occurring. Similarly, in the Medical Clinic, a hypothesis, e.g., that lupus, in some patients, might be primarily due to type 1 interferon dysregulation, is not a “conspiracy theory” that lazily impugns the immune system—it is a hypothesis, and one that warrants consideration and testing, in case it might prove to be true (in which case patients would greatly benefit).
Which of the six hypotheses is true may be difficult to prove. Fortunately, however, we, the people, if we adequately inform ourselves, can exercise our democratic rights and resist implementation of the plans associated with hypotheses 3-6 (the Consortium’s plans), and we can strongly urge, democratically, that the plans associated with Hypotheses 1 and 2 be implemented—preferably a plan to create new levels of Social Beauty and Public Activity, including a responsible and democratic Public Economy. It is extremely important, though, to fully evaluate Hypothesis 2 and Hypotheses 3-6, because, if one or more of those hypotheses is true, corporations and the Corporate Consortium need to be held accountable for their behaviors to date and must be prevented from exercising their power, continuing their harmful behaviors, and implementing unhealthy plans in the future.
Hypothesis 2, for example, appropriately raises concern that Corporate behaviors have seriously harmed the environment and have played a considerable role in the development of zoonotic infection. “Out of an abundance of caution,” it would seem reasonable to place Big Agriculture (Monsanto, Archer-Daniels-Midland, e.g.) and Big Forestry on at least temporary “lockdown” until the extent to which their practices pose a threat to Humanity and the environment can be adequately evaluated.
Likewise, if bioweapons labs have been engaged in bioterrorism (Hypothesis 6a), we need to know this. “Out of an abundance of caution,” it would seem reasonable to at least temporarily place all bioweapons labs on total lockdown until we have fully investigated exactly what they have been doing and whether they are even necessary. This investigation should be transparent, with all details being made available to the public. If it turns out that the COVID19 virus was, indeed, bioengineered, then we need to know all the details, so that we can know better how to treat it, what to expect with it, and can make sure that nothing like this ever happens again.
If people, like the leaders of the Corporate Consortium, have deliberately hyped and manipulated fears about the COVID virus, especially if they had foreknowledge that those fears were not warranted, we need to know this immediately, and they need to be held accountable.
For the above reasons, it is important to thoroughly evaluate Hypotheses 2-6. If, “out of an abundance of caution,” most of Humanity is being asked to accept prolonged lockdown of their lives (and livelihood) during this COVID epidemic, then it would seem reasonable and fair to inconvenience the above operations with full investigations, “out of an abundance of caution.”
All of us can serve in the Social Clinic. We can all be Social Clinicians. It is the recommendation of this Social Clinician (RMR) that we use this COVID epidemic as an opportunity to engage in widespread public and private dialogue, not just about the epidemic, but also about the many other global problems we face. We do not need the Consortium to rescue us. They are skilled at making money, exploiting people, manipulating situations, gaining and wielding power and control—but, most of us are not interested in such activities. Many of us are interested in vast Public Activity and creation of greater Social Beauty. We do not need the Consortium’s plans or their leadership. We can rescue ourselves, and we can try to rescue our planet and all its living things. We can decide for ourselves what we think about Human Nature,6-8 about competition,9 about what kind of economic model7,10,11,12 would create more Social Beauty, how much Public Activity3 we would like to create, how much technological surveillance we want, and how much glyphosate we want soaking our fields.
One of the silver linings of the COVID epidemic is that we now have a pressing opportunity to seriously consider these issues, engage in thoughtful dialogue about them, and seek remedy for them.
Welcome to the Social Clinic.
For further reading, the following “Notes from the Social Clinic” are available:
- Welcome to the Social Clinic
- The Themes and Strategy of the “Notes from the Social Clinic (NFSC)”
- Create Vast Fields of Public Activity
- Nature’s Garden—A Model for a Healthy Human Social Ecosystem
- Social Beauty
- Human Nature—A Graphic Depiction
- Sowing the Seeds for Public Economy and Social Beauty
- Up-Regulation and Down-Regulation of the Expression of Human Behavioral Capacities
- An Accurate Understanding of Competition
- Problematic Aspects of Capitalism
- Public Economy and Development of a Collaborative International Network of Unique, Creative, Self-determined, National Public Economies
- Little Economic Story: To What Extent Should Capitalism be Practiced within a Public Economy?
- Other Little Economic Stories
- The Corporate Consortium—its Make-up, its Power, its Wealth, and its Plans
- The Corporate Consortium’s Power Structure—Table X
- Lessons from the Medical Clinic
- The Medical Clinic and the Social Clinic
- Human Physiology as a Model for a Human Economy
- The Immune System as a Model for Social and Economic Organization