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Reblogged:Micropsychia and Megalomania vs. Your Plans

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Recent events have reminded me of a short piece by the late John Lewis. He warned Americans over a decade ago about a type of mentality which is on full display across the country, in the form of the universal, indefinite lockdowns that have ruined or are imperiling the livelihoods of millions of Americans.

In 2006, John Lewis described an army, of little dictators, which was already too powerful then. He stated in part:

Plans and whims are fundamentally incompatible. (Image by Sven Mieke, via Unsplash, license.)
Their names are friendly; their power immense. One I knew, "Jim," had final say over whether a 42-story office building in a major city could open. Another, "Marty," said he did not care that his failure to read a blueprint had cost a small business $10,000 -- "that don't matter" were his words. Another, an inspector named "CJ" (the initials have been changed to protect his victims) was asked whether building requirements had changed "in his town"; he said, "I haven't decided. I'll let you know." Another, "Frank," showed up smelly and unshaven at the final inspection of a new high-tech manufacturing plant, and delayed its opening for three days pending a test of the fire alarm system's batteries.

Some personalize everything. "I ain't gonna allow it," I heard one decree, as he told a contractor to tear down a stone chimney and start over because the hearth was an inch too narrow. Another told me, "I ain't lettin' no more cottages be converted to year-round use. There's too many now," as he slapped a red tag on my neighbor's door. Once I was doing a project at a very remote site, which took hours to get to, including a boat trip. An official said, to my face, that he'd require our technicians to return as often as he saw fit: "Not everyone can work in my town." Another made similar demands at a major state university; his son was our competitor, and had lost the bid.

These Little Dictators have the power of government guns to enforce their decisions. To avoid their wrath, a productive individual must suppress his rational judgment, and go by the rules they enforce. They are enemies of independent thought and comrades of conformity. Their whims and their rules coercively substitute for reality in the minds of their victims.
It is disturbing enough that so many of these people are in charge. In many cases, the lockdowns have crossed the line from blunt actions taken in panic at a time of crisis to blatant attempts to widen government control over our daily lives.

And it is worse that these little dictators seem to enjoy some popular support. This morning, I read in a news report that someone blamed businessmen for not planning on the sudden, unnecessary, and arbitrarily long shuttering of their doors. That's thoughtless and unempathetic on a par with telling a reasonably prudent gunshot victim that he's an idiot for not wearing a bulletproof vest all the time.

Except that it's worse, because presumably that wouldn't come with a whitewashing of the crime. What Gavin Newsom, Gretchen Whitmer, and countless other less-prominent little dictators are doing is wrong.

Americans need to rediscover their old suspicion of government, and fast. Until we place government back on a short leash, our best-laid plans will remain increasingly at the mercy of small-souled people who don't give a tinker's dam about our lives, are clueless about living, and are more than happy to treat our lives as playthings.

-- CAV

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