The Eighth and Deadliest Sin
Catholicism schools its adherents on the seven deadly sins, behaviors or feelings that if left unchecked will inspire further sin. They consist of pride, greed, lust, envy, gluttony, wrath, and sloth. To these, I propose adding deception, the inclination or practice of misleading others through lies or trickery.
Our waking life is full of deception, truth as unreal as that filling our dreams while asleep. The difference between the two is that while those dreams evaporate as water does in heat, deceptions inflicted by day can have lasting, even deadly effects.
Much of recorded history is based on deception. A narrative is created to substantiate the end result, whether positive or negative. For many, the time required to sort out the true from the false is overwhelming. All said and done, most people would certainly prefer to read about deception than to suffer from its consequences.
Deception is imposed on us by multiple entities: medical, governmental, legal, or even ecclesiastical. The media, including mainstream, alternative, and social, is notoriously rife with deception. Advertising is often just embellishment, not quite deception, and is luckily mostly something we can tune out.
On the medical front, for the past several years, the public was hectored about a novel virus on the loose that if left unchecked would cause widespread death and destruction. It required shielding us from one another (masks, distancing, business and school closures), repeated testing with non-FDA approved methods, and injection with non-FDA approved (until recently) substances studied with little short-term and no long-term follow-up.
This deception continued despite the fact that masks and distancing found no reproducible support in the medical literature while having negative mental health effects on the youth and elderly. PCR testing was re-outed for its inability to diagnose any specific disease in addition to being performed inappropriately.
Injections were marketed as vaccines, but only due to definition change. The possibility of causing genetic alteration was ridiculed or ignored. Neither safety (based on VAERS reporting) nor efficacy (as longer-term follow-up showed waning benefit) was substantiated. Additionally, there was suppression (sometimes by mandate) of medications with anti-viral properties that may have prevented deaths or at least minimized the severity of illness.
On the government front, our nation’s origin was built on a deception; the meeting in Philadelphia in May of 1787 being formally charged only to amend the existing Articles of Confederation among the states, not to form a new government.
The Constitution as formulated was criticized for its vagueness, one outstanding example residing in the “general welfare clause.” What this federal government could not do was not clear. The combination of a standing army and unlimited tax authority was viewed as a recipe for tyranny.
Further, the judiciary would be independent of the people and the legislature. Any decision could come forth, while errors were uncorrectable, and no matter how many committed. Their judgment was final and irreversible, thus making this branch superior to the legislature.
These insights came to fruition, as evidenced by our ever-expanding Federal Register, judicial legislation, and new rights discovered within invisible penumbras. So much for a limited accountable government with co-equal branches. The anti-federalist’s warnings were unheeded.
While deception occurs in warfare, today it is used not only against the enemy but also against the public. The justifications need not be consistent, but only sufficient to sell the cause along the way.
Why bring up the past even though it continues to deceive us?
Lincoln claimed the Civil War was necessary in order to maintain the Union. Today’s interpretation is that slavery was the central issue. Ultimately, it was about money, power, and control.
The Spanish-American War with its slogan “Remember the Maine to hell with Spain,” was likely a shipboard fire aboard the U.S. battleship Maine while in Havana harbor, rather than a Spanish attack. It in part led to a declaration of war against Spain.
The HMS Lusitania, a passenger ship carrying munitions, sunk by a German torpedo during WWI, in part led to the U.S. entry into WWI.
The Gulf of Tonkin incident was an attack on the destroyer USS Maddox. The first attack was real, the second likely a phantom. Nonetheless, it became the justification for entry into a war that began in Vietnam and later expanded.
Lt. General Smedley Butler summed up war succinctly; war is a racket. A racket based often on deception not just toward foe but friend.
Just in case I have not made the case, I will add several more deceptions offered by our government. The Federal Reserve is part of the government, though it is really a system of private banks. It is claimed there is a social security “lockbox,” though the deposits are lumped in with general tax revenue. Voting is important since every vote counts, despite fraud caught on camera and socialism and totalitarianism relentlessly marching forward. Boys and girls are interchangeable, even though chromosomes never change.
Organized religion is not immune from carrying out deception. For years, the Catholic Church denied the existence of pedophilia among some of its priests. As the claims mounted, criminal proceedings quietly occurred, and payments were made.
About 10 years ago, I asked a patient, who must have been nearly 80 years of age, if he recognized the world he was living in compared to the one that he grew up in. He took a few seconds to answer, looked at me, and said "absolutely not".
Though he lived through many of the deceptions I mentioned, he did not recognize them as such. I am sure he is no longer alive, but if he were, it is more than likely that he would also not recognize the deceptions imposed over these past several years or one we may shortly experience should the tempo of that drumbeat increase.
I will end with Anthony Weldon, quoting an Italian proverb: “He that deceives me once, it’s his fault; but if twice, it’s my fault.” Clearly, one time should be enough to consider it a sin.