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Merchants of death


Here’s something that our political system can’t acknowledge, because doing so would be too delegitimating to the system itself:

The Republican party is in the midst of getting hundreds of thousands (at least) of Americans needlessly killed by COVID, because the GOP’s leaders have calculated that failing to ameliorate the pandemic is bad for Joe Biden and Congressional Democrats.

This is essentially mass murder on an industrial scale. That this is happening isn’t something that can be denied by anyone who has paid any attention to either Republican rhetoric or actions over the past year. Currently about 1500 Americans per day are dying of COVID — a number that’s likely to rise by a lot over the next few weeks, before the Omicron wave breaks. Somewhere around 95% of those deaths wouldn’t have happened if the dying people had been vaccinated (This number rises to basically 100% for people under 65).

Everyone who is choosing to enable this for either political or pecuniary gain is a mass murderer. This means that Tucker Carlson, and Alex Berenson, and Ted Cruz, and Jeb Rubenfeld, and Lauren Boebert, and John Roberts and the Furious Five, and many, many other prominent Americans are mass murderers.

Again, this is both indisputable and something that can never be acknowledged. (Can you even imagine a prominent Democratic politician saying anything remotely like this?).

We have to play along with the fiction that there are people of good will on both sides of this issue, because recognizing and acknowledging the truth — that the people I just listed, and so very many others, are mass murderers — would have certain consequences that people would very much prefer not to face, such as contemplating what moral imperatives are implicated by the realization that these people are mass murderers.

Everybody likes to imagine that they would have been helping run the Underground Railroad in 1853, or would have been members of the White Rose in 1943. The truth is that what the overwhelming majority of people do when faced with radical evil is nothing.

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