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Charles N. Steele

A friend of mine just observed that one can roughly gauge a person’s philosophical outlook and politics from their reaction to the virus. People with faith that God is running the universe, ultimately for good, tend to be conservatives and not too panicked; they react fairly calmly with rational virus precautions. Secular rationalists who believe the universe simply functions on its own and are accustomed to that tend to be libertarian and react similarly. Both groups recognize and accept that *something* is going to kill them eventually and accept that and simply live life while they have it. They are largely self responsible.

The third group consists of people who don’t believe in God or a systematic order to the universe, want utopia, expect someone else - government - to provide it, and fear anything that they think prevents utopia (e.g. the virus, but also people in the other groups who see the world differently and thus threaten “utopia”). They tend to be leftists.

I think it’s only roughly so, but people’s reactions to the virus seem pretty well explained by this, so too “cancel culture.” It’s otherwise unclear to me why COVIDphobia and cancel culture should both be things of the left.

John Pepple

A very interesting observation on your friend's part. What prompted my post was an email sent out by a young professor who was so worried about dying. She wondered if, were she to die, her children would still get free tuition at Kenyon, where she teaches. Sheesh.

It was pretty clear that she wanted both fall term to be wholly online -- except that no one is going to pay Kenyon's high tuition for online classes -- and to get her full salary with all benefits during the coming year. Unfortunately, choices have to be made, and I thought that Kenyon had made some sensible ones, but her demands are completely unreasonable.

She reminds me of the hysterical woman in the movie Airplane whom everyone is lining up for to slap her so she'll shut up.

Maya Markova

There was no reason for Swedish hospitals to be overwhelmed, because, according to reports, personnel at elderly care facilities (where most victims belonged) was specifically instructed not to seek medical examination and hospital admission for the sick and dying of COVID tenants.
Many other people were prevented even from getting tested. I have read a Swedish official admitting that during the worst of the epidemic, few people could be tested, therefore now more infected people are registered, though fewer die.
My experience with socialized medicine in Bulgaria has convinced me that such a "free" system can work only if access to medical care is limited and restricted.

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