Opinion

Coronavirus: A Few Lessons So Far

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Posted: Apr 01, 2020 12:01 AM
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Coronavirus: A Few Lessons So Far

Source: AP Photo/Seth Wenig

The vanishing line between parody and reality in coronavirus reporting is a sure indication that the nation’s professional scribblers need to recheck their credentialed “privileges” at the door.  Thus, when The Babylon Bee reports that the “Communist Party Of China Can't Believe They're Getting Such Great Coverage From The American Media For Free,” readers can hardly be surprised after learning how “China uses American media to push coronavirus propaganda” from such formerly esteemed sources as The New York Times, The Washington Post, and USA Today.  In spite of the fact that this global catastrophe was launched from Wuhan Province in China, many politicians, entertainers, and virtually every faculty lounge consider it “xenophobic” or “anti-American” for referencing a particular country.   Such infantilism should require checking one’s brains at the door, as well.

Which suggests several lessons that have emerged from coping with this horrible disease.  Although the following back-of-the-envelope bullet list cites nothing original, recent events have highlighted important truths, some of which are disturbing.

The Chinese Regime is Evil  

Not just corrupt or incompetent, though surely those things as well, but inherently evil. The vile nature of the whole governing structure poisons everything its leaders do.  Indeed, much of President Reagan’s renowned “Evil Empire” address applies to the Chinese government as well, perhaps more so, given China’s greater involvement in and influence over global economics.  Thus, Reagan’s warning that “the only morality they recognize is what will further their cause, meaning they reserve unto themselves the right to commit any crime, to lie, to cheat, in order to attain that,” strikes a chillingly relevant chord.

Further, the regime knew about the dangers of this scourge but chose to unleash it on the world stage anyway, assuming that a barrage of lies would cover its tracks.  After it became clear that ordinary prevarication was flailing in the shoals of skepticism and needed a boost, Chinese leaders decided to blame the whole thing on the United States.  The brazenness of this attempt takes one’s breath away: “Zhao Lijian, a spokesman and deputy director general for the information department at the Chinese Foreign Ministry, tweeted: ‘It might be US army who brought the epidemic to Wuhan.  Be transparent!  Make public your data!  US owe(s) us an explanation!’”  

Question is, could anyone believe such shameless falderol?   Well, some, perhaps, as indicated by American media reactions cited above.  Speaking of which…

There are no Journalists left in America

Might as well charge forward with an exaggeration, especially one applicable to major media outlets, most of which have relegated journalism to political hucksterism specializing in “gotcha” questions.  Consider a recent exchange between President Trump and a notorious smearer from PBS News, Yamiche Alcindor, who accused him of dismissing governors’ requests for equipment they “don’t actually need,” quoting him out of context. Gregg Re recounts Trump’s answer:

"Why don't you people act a little more positively -- it's always trying to get-you, get-you, get you….  That's why nobody trusts the media anymore….  Let me tell you something: Be nice. Don't be threatening. Be nice."

But she couldn’t be “nice.”  Why should she?  Swarms of fellow leftists flocked to her defense, as she lamented, "I’m not the first human being, woman, black person or journalist to be told that while doing a job.”  Poor lady!  By the most generous estimate, she was three-quarters correct, after eliminating the “journalist” pose.  

Still, the no-journalists-left charge stuns the sensibilities, even though it is accurate at about a 95 percent level, considering the proportion of Trump’s negative coverage in the press.  Which leads to another unsettling lesson.

American Academia Needs Drastic Reforms

The 95 percent figure also corresponds roughly to the percentage of leftists found in American universities, particularly in the humanities and social sciences.  Which explains where these self-styled “journalists” come from, as well as why the entire institutional apparatus that manufactures them needs to be overhauled.  This monumental task will take a generation, at least, and probably is best left to the States.  Especially since the best thing one could say about the Federal Department of Education is that it should be abolished.

The Difference Between Reality and Fiction

Philip K. Dick’s definition of reality has never been more relevant: “Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away.”  The negative version of this is perhaps even more important: “Unreality (fiction) is that which, when you stop believing in it, disappears.”  The first definition applies to the coronavirus. It is very real, and it is devastating; the second, to almost any other fashionable topic awarded the term, “crisis.”  The climate change cult falls into this category.  Prediction: if climate change hysteria-mongers lost their parishioners and multi-billion-dollar supporters, the problem would vanish.  Why?  It didn’t exist to begin with.  Doubt that?   Get a list of billionaires selling their seaside resorts because they fear climate change.  Go ahead, try it.  

Americans are Fantastic, Especially Health Care Providers

This is the best part of all, of course, and Americans of all backgrounds are treated with sterling accounts of heroism and sacrifice every day.  Many more reports no doubt would flood media narratives of our country’s greatness under conditions of duress if cynicism didn’t dominate the airwaves and print media.  Indeed, too many opportunists are committed to perhaps the most destructive motto of all: Never a let a good crisis go to waste.

All Americans should work relentlessly to prevent this evil assertion from being our country’s epitaph.