Leftist tyranny to combat the Wuhan Virus is, in part, a failure of imagination
Today brought two more examples of the leftists' totalitarian approach to the Wuhan (or New York) virus. These reports, like so many others, reveal that leftists are so obsessed by the perceived dangers before them that they cannot respond to greater, as yet unseen risks.
Los Angeles County, having experienced 1,613 probable virus deaths out of a total population of around 10,000,000 people (meaning that 0.016% of the population died from the virus), has announced that it will keep the county locked down for three more months.
Meanwhile, the Colorado government snatched the license from a restaurant that violated an executive order by opening for Mother's Day.
In light of these stories, Kevin James's latest video, while played for laughs, suddenly doesn't seem so funny anymore:
Leftist governments have decided that their overriding goal is to prevent all future virus deaths. They don't care that the American people were told to "lock down" just to "flatten the curve." That was a reasonable step months ago, when hospitals in Wuhan and Italy were overwhelmed. With the curve flattened here, however, leftist mayors and governors across America are so focused on stopping any viral deaths in their jurisdictions (an impossible goal) that they are blind to the greater number of deaths their economy-killing policies will create.
This is the same thought pattern we see with the gun debate. Leftists are obsessively focused on the 33,000 or so annual gun deaths in America. Those are real, countable bodies that render leftists incapable of seeing the larger picture, which is that, as we know from a 2013 CDC study, defensive gun use saves 500,000 to 3 million lives annually.
We see this thought pattern again with abortion. Democrats' little hearts bleed when they think of women suffering from unwanted pregnancies. However, they deliberately close their eyes to the babies aborted, defining them down as fetuses (not as cute as babies) or clumps of cells.
Frédéric Bastiat would have understood the progressives' intellectual blinders. He was a French economist in the early 19th century, who wrote "What is Seen and What is Unseen," the essay that introduced the parable of the broken window:
Have you ever witnessed the anger of the good shopkeeper, James Goodfellow, when his careless son has happened to break a pane of glass? If you have been present at such a scene, you will most assuredly bear witness to the fact that every one of the spectators, were there even thirty of them, by common consent apparently, offered the unfortunate owner this invariable consolation — "It is an ill wind that blows nobody good. Everybody must live, and what would become of the glaziers if panes of glass were never broken?"
Now, this form of condolence contains an entire theory, which it will be well to show up in this simple case, seeing that it is precisely the same as that which, unhappily, regulates the greater part of our economical institutions.
Suppose it cost six francs to repair the damage, and you say that the accident brings six francs to the glazier's trade — that it encourages that trade to the amount of six francs — I grant it; I have not a word to say against it; you reason justly. The glazier comes, performs his task, receives his six francs, rubs his hands, and, in his heart, blesses the careless child. All this is that which is seen.
But if, on the other hand, you come to the conclusion, as is too often the case, that it is a good thing to break windows, that it causes money to circulate, and that the encouragement of industry in general will be the result of it, you will oblige me to call out, "Stop there! Your theory is confined to that which is seen; it takes no account of that which is not seen."
It is not seen that as our shopkeeper has spent six francs upon one thing, he cannot spend them upon another. It is not seen that if he had not had a window to replace, he would, perhaps, have replaced his old shoes, or added another book to his library. In short, he would have employed his six francs in some way, which this accident has prevented. (Emphasis mine.)
Democrats "see" people dead from viruses, guns, or unwanted pregnancies, and that's all they see. This leads them to demand endless lockdowns, gun bans, and open-ended abortions. They are incapable of grasping that their allegedly "preventative" policies lead to unimaginably higher numbers of deaths.
Thanks to open-ended abortions, 62,000,000 babies have been killed in America since 1973. If progressive gun bans were to pass, between 500,000 and 3 million people might die each year. And if the Democrats' current endless lockdowns continue unabated, we can expect that in Los Angeles County alone, substantially more than 0.016% of its citizens will die from poverty-related illnesses, suicide, substance abuse, missed childhood vaccinations, increased crime, and undiagnosed cancer.
Democrats need a dose of Bastiat's wisdom: "Stop there! Your theory is confined to that which is seen; it takes no account of that which is not seen."