In search of a “Ukraine-War-Panic”–“Corona-Panic” Venn diagram

An easy observation, it was, in late February and March 2022, to (ironically) say “the Ukraine-Russia war miraculously ended Covid!

On further consideration, it may not be so simple.

I am interested in prying into this and finding a Venn diagram between the Corona-Panic we have known for two years and the new Ukraine-War-Panic, the similarities and differences of the two phenomena and how they happened, how they are enforced, and who stands behind them, who pushes them, who joined. In what way are the two phenomena related? Is there a common cause of both?

A brief investigation.

(2000 words)

First, in the grand old tradition of a picture being “worth a thousand words” (near the length of this essay), let me offer this:

The masks! Everyone!

This is an anti-war and/or pro-Ukraine and/or anti-Russia protest in Berlin, the Brandenburg Gate in the rear. Everyone has masks on, outdoors, conspicuous, perhaps proud of it given that none have even slipped below the nose. (I don’t know the exact date of this photo; it was either on the first day of the war or just before the war by a few days.) Other footage of protests shows the same, lots of masking. Immediately it suggests the two phenomena may exist in symbiosis…Or what?


The Ukraine-Russia war began on February 24 when Russia invaded.

By early March 2022, the observation that “Covid” had been miraculously (apparently) cured, or some variant to that effect, had become almost trite, if certainly correct.

To be more specific about it, we suddenly saw a “Ukraine-War-Panic” displace the remnants of the “Corona-Panic,” at least temporarily. On the other hand, this Ukraine-Panic displaced an already declining Corona-Panic, which is the first twist in the story.

Untangling exactly what was going on with this seeming clash of these two “panics” is not easy amid the surge of war-propaganda and near-hysteria in some quarters. The same, of course, was true in early 2020, with untangling what was going on with “Covid” in its first weeks and months. The Corona-Panic also brought us war-propaganda-like conditions in 2020.

A lot of the same actors were behind both.

CNN (etc.)

The agenda-setting media institutions that pushed the Corona-Panic has dropped any mention of “Covid” starting February 24. This is definitely true of CNN.

Long gone are CNN’s rolling ‘case’ and ‘death’ counts. The virus is still circulating, but they ignore it. We are in “tree falling in the forest with no one there to hear it” territory. (Critics of the Corona-Panic pointed out this was true all alone; basically few would’ve noticed a severe flu wave in 2020 without the Panic.)

The “dog that doesn’t bark” observation is that none of the CNN reporters embedded in different places and talking to people at close quarters, none of them have masks anymore.

There is a woman reporter who carries the title “chief international correspondent.” In 2020 and 2021 she pushed Corona-Panic tropes and loyally fanned the flames of the Panic. Now, in late February 2022, she was in Ukraine, inserting herself in a crowded underground Metro station, maskless, among hundreds of people. Looking at vaccination rates, said to be 30% in Ukraine, the majority of people the chief international correspondent was rubbing elbows with never got even one of the holy injections. Almost none had masks on.

The same reporter who in 2021 was so frightened of The Virus she wore large goggles and masks while reporting, was now freely and nonchalantly mingling with unvaxxed, unmasked Ukrainians by the hundred. In daily reporting, she mentioned the tragedy of swamped hospitals, but totally forgot (?) to mention one word about “Covid” victims in these hospitals; the “swamped hospitals” were treating war casualties, but miraculously now had no “Covid” patients. Amazing!

These are easy-enough points to make. Easy though they may be, they still deserve direct attention: The powerful energies of yesterday, related to the Corona-Panic movement, suddenly find all-but no airtime after February 24? A few weeks earlier the Corona Pro-Panic vs. Anti-Panic still seemed a main thing going on; now, nothing. It is almost eerie.

Instead, U.S. media has for two weeks given wall-to-wall coverage of the Ukraine war, as if the war were in North America involving a U.S. state (or perhaps a Canadian province), rather than what it is, a distant, quasi-client regime or a would-be geopolitical outpost. No other ongoing wars have ever gotten coverage like this in our time. in U.S. media.


A notable and obvious similarity between the Corona-Panic and the Ukraine-War-Panic is the wave of corporate “virtue-signaling.” Corporations and other institutions all fall in line behind the Ukraine-War-Panic, declare that they support the cause and are taking it seriously. These kinds of waves of actions from corporations never happened in the past.

We saw this cascade of corporate and institutions sliding into socio-political discourse in a way they seldom or never did before with the Corona-Panic (cheerleading the Panic, propagandizing for it, and announcing their full backing for the Panic and willingness to punish dissenters).

Then we saw the same with the Black Lives Matter moral-panic, when “woke” corporations and major institutions seemed to immediately and unanimously line up behind a radical political movement, following a strategy (?) of “declare support first, ask questions last.” Following the several days of riots, the International Finance Corporation unveiled enormous “End Racism!” banners on its buildings.

It’s much the same with the Ukraine-War-Panic. It’s also an easy observation to say no corporations announced boycotts against the foreign belligerents in the Yemen War, or any other war in recent years.

Feeding frenzy

It’s clear enough that the Western media and most of the Western agenda-setting and political class dove into a heroin- or cocaine-like “feeding frenzy” mode in late February 2022. It has carried over into early March. Into panic or hysteria overdrive, with discourse reminiscent of the initial Corona-Panic of early-to-mid 2020.

This latest panic is about something non-virus-related, which seems to mean an attendant loss of interest in the formerly honored Corona-Panic. As we cautiously seek to declare an “end” to the Corona-Panic (as a primary, driving social phenomenon), its destructiveness a thing to speak of in the past tense, we may be seeing the ‘demand’ side for a Corona-Panic-like event still exists. Something about our culture or the version of reality we now inhabit may be creating these panics. (What that s and how to pin it down and deal with it, is the elusive answer to the question “Why did the Corona-Panic happen?”)

Amid the new “feeding frenzy,” the Corona-Moloch’s temples suddenly go neglected. They are still visited, but now only by ultra-loyal Believers.

Giant statues of the Corona-Moloch, long standing in public, no longer get offerings. Some may be on track to an ‘Ozymandias’ fate. Or are they? Let’s not rush ahead of ourselves (let’s wait for the Venn diagram.)

And leaders of the Corona-Cult, men and women long held in esteem by the loyally Pro-Panic side, have either gone missing or have seemed to recant or, if that is too strong a word, to claim they were never particularly loyal to the Corona-Moloch after all. Doctor Fauci, once dubbed the “Corona-Ayatollah,” has not had a major public appearance since February 17, 2022 (notably, one week before the Ukraine war).

It is tempting, very tempting, to simply say “they” shifted their focus to this new thing and gave up the old thing to make room for the new. UBut upon reflection, this idea that the Ukraine war suddenly ended the Corona-Panic as a social force is not good enough. There is definitely more to the story, as I see it, for at least two reasons:

(1) Pressure towards a managed “de-escalation” of the Corona-Panic clearly predates the Ukraine war.

It must have been, in part, because of domestic opposition to the flabby monster that was Corona-Panic-Power, that the de-escalation was underway. Timelines differ in different places but are often interrelated, but in general terms it feels like February 2022 was the key month in the decline of the Corona-Panic’s power.

The opposition was empowered, committed, and large by early 2022, growing on major gains in 2021. The ongoing mandates and digital-health-pass systems and rules and unpredictability of when things would shut down or etc., all had a disturbingly dystopian feel, and the only surprise is that broad-based opposition didn’t galvanize itself far earlier.

Uncompromising opposition had, by late 2021 and early 2022, reached a height which proved embarrassing to the elite. In other words, while the Corona-Panic still was in the halls of power, upheld by the remnants of the old Pro-Panic coalition of 2020-21, the Anti-Panickers had all the momentum. The Pro-Panickers were starting to look decidedly uncool in the eyes of the median observer. This is where things like the “Defeat the Mandates” rally in Washington (January 23, 2022), come in. Then there is the major success of the Freedom Convoy movement in Canada of late January and February.

The full story has not yet been told, but it seems the cascade of retreats in February 2022 by the Panic-pushers and Panic-regime enforcers is related to the clear strength of the Anti-Corona-Panic social movement. The main dates we could associate with the retreat all predate the February 24 start of the war.

(2) There are signs of symbiosis of the two Panics rather than displacement.

The Corona-Panic coalition still exists; the hypothesis that Corona had triggered a religious cult remains valid; there are still believers and persons attaching themselves to it. In other wor,ds the Corona-Moloch and its prestige still have plenty of loyalists.

Then, in late February, footage of some of the anti-Russia, pro-Ukraine protests in the West revealed rates of (outdoor) masking far higher among the demonstrators than among the general-population from which they come, as I mention at the top of this essay. This viscerally and immediately suggested some kind of symbiosis of the two phenomena in the West.

The two phenomena both show characteristics of a social panic, but it’s more than that: the two groups of backers (or True Believers, as it were), show major overlap. The two groups I refer to are those still today supportive of the Corona-Panic, on one hand, and those who would call themselves supportive of Ukraine or pro-intervention in some way, or anti-Russia, on the other hand. I would exclude from the latter actual Ukrainians, many of whom are naturally angry or distressed about the war in their country, but the majority of the pro-Ukraine, anti-Russia protestors are not Ukrainians.

How do we interpret the sea of Corona compliance masks at the protests, even at this (apparent) late date in the Corona-Panic’s life-cycle. In any mixed environment, masks are a status-signal that one is a loyalist to the social force that was, and is, the Corona-Panic. Such a status-signal immediately clashes with the seeming purpose of a war protest. Masks are unnecessary at least, and even inappropriate, if the point is solely message of support, strength, or perhaps even bellicosity against Russia. The inappropriateness: masking looks weak, inevitably looks weak. (Maybe that’s why no one involved in the wartime rounds f Russia-Ukraine talks has worn a mask.)

Is there a symbiosis of the Ukraine-War-Panic and Corona-Panic social forces going on? What’s the meaning of it?

The Venn diagram

An idea took shape in my mind in late February, the first week of the Ukraine-Russia war, observing the initial burst of activity that I’ve called the Ukraine-War-Panic. The idea was this: it is not that loyalty to Corona-Panic orthodoxy causes one to suddenly love Ukraine and/or hate Russia. It is that there is (may be) some unidentified, unnamed, common cause to both phenomena.

This is where the Venn diagram comes in. We have two overlapping circles, one labeled Corona-Panic and one labeled Ukraine-War-Panic. We begin listing characteristics, placing those unique to one or the other in the proper place and with a special interest in what ends up in the middle of the Venn diagram. Not just a type of person, but a type of person interacting with cultural, political, technological conditions of our present-day, with reality as we know know it. The type of person in the middle of our Venn diagram is, assuredly, of interest. But the exact same type of person may not have embraced either phenomenon x years earlier but is doing so now.

On its face, the Ukraine-War-Panic looks more politicized than the Corona-Panic did at first. In some way, the Ukraine-War-Panic feels easier to identify as a kind of mass-hysteria event, and in any case wars are known to go that way. The Ukraine-Panic would seem to (also) resemble the Black Lives Matter Panic of mid-2020. This time incorporating their now-long-held bugbear of Russia (starting especially in the mid-2010s), all three seem to share something at their core.

I’ve been thinking lately in terms of “Corona-Panic-like events.” I don’t know if the Ukraine-War-Panic qualifies in full or not. So many of the same building blocks do seem to be there. It depends a lot on how the Ukraine-War-Panic started, and I don’t mean the casus belli or the diplomatic or geopolitical factors, but the social phenomenon of the Ukraine-War-Panic and its backers, pushers, enthusiasts, and orchestrators (if I may be so bold).

Somebody from Germany who writes under “Eddy Bernayz” commented as follows on the striking similarities between “lockdowners and warmongers,” or in the terms of this essay, embracers and supporters of the Corona-Panic and the recent enthusiastic embracers of the Ukraine-War-Panic.


Some realizations after Day 3 of the Ukraine-Russia War:

1. Lockdowners are also warmongers;

2. Men who had been terrified of COVID now want to rush to the frontlines and fight;

3. In social media profiles, it’s Covid virtue-signals ‘out’, Ukraine flags ‘in’;

4. Toxic Masculinity in war is cool, feminists silent;

5. Westerners much prefer defending other nations than their own;

6. As with Covid, there is only one acceptable opinion.


As the Ukraine-War-Panic has already lasted two weeks (as of this writing, it is the Day-13 mark since the first border-incursions, predawn February 24 Ukraine time), it will probably last weeks to come at least, in some form, even after hostilities end.

The similarities between this Ukraine-War-Panic (as social-political phenomenon, not as military or geopolitical phenomenon) and the monstrous Corona-Panic, with he Black Lives Matter moral-panic, and with other events of recent times, should be top interest.

Whatever the structural causes of the Corona-Panic of 2020-to-2022 were, the same weaknesses in our civilization if unfaced, un-“addressed” (as they like to say now), unmitigated, unsolved, might well create more mega-panics of the same kind. Until we develop some civilizational self-defense mechanisms, perhaps after significant damage, this seems to me possibly our number-one problem, and it’s one most are unaware of as they drift from panic to panic.

Maybe these “Corona-Panic-like events” will never come exactly the same way. (Maybe there will even be future rounds of Corona-Panic-like health panics. Remembers that they kept the Corona-Panic itself running for two years, most of it with the thinnest of justifications…) But unless we identify why the Corona-Panic itself happened, the same thing may keep happening using the same (largely hidden) mechanisms and structural weaknesses in our civilization as it now exists.


A postscript: If we do end up declaring the Russia-Ukraine war to be “the beginning of the end for the Corona-Panic,” let’s note that it came in right at the 25-month mark.

Pinning the start of the Corona phenomenon to late January 2020 and the bizarre lockdown decision out of China, it’s a clean 25-months. (The earliest possible start-point is late December 2019; later start-points are also possible, up to the end of February 2020, early March being a stretch–clearly the phenomenon existed already by then.)

But this dating of the beginning and (especially) end of the Corona-Panic as social phenomenon may be a rather academic exercise. Remnants of the Panic-proper will, I assume, linger on for a while in 2022. God forbid there be a Corona-Re-Panic next winter, if not earlier, citing “cases rising,” “new variant,” “Long Covid,” “new booster,” or something else. And the Corona-Panic’s follow-on and indirect effects, sadly, will be with us for many years to come…regardless of what kind of attention it’s getting.


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57 Responses to In search of a “Ukraine-War-Panic”–“Corona-Panic” Venn diagram

  1. hermod says:

    “Ukraine is the new Covid.” –James Delingpole

  2. Dieter Kief says:

    We are here in the fields of doubt, haunting fear, of the “darkness at the break of noon”, as the bard had it; in the regions where people “lose themselves” /the bard again) , drowned in unsurmountable stashes of informations, and “reappear” (the last time with the bard here) – amidst a 24/7 media-input, which has only intensified since the days of WW I – and even then it was already too much, as Karl Kraus (and his – imaginary…) intellectual – enemy/counterpart – Dr. Freud famously noted in his essay about (this above noted) war. “There is no real direction here, neither lines of power nor cooperation. Decisions are never really made – at best they manage to emerge, from a chaos of peeves, whims, hallucinations and all around assholery.”
    This quote is from the novel Gravity’s Rainbow. – – – So: We are clearly in its author Thomas Pynchon’s and Michel Serres’ territory. – I’ll leave Michel Serres aside here for this moment and concentrate on the (much easier accessable) novelist and essayist and songsmith Thomas Pynchon for a short while. So here is one more quote from one more of his novels:

    “I came,” she said, “hoping you could talk me out of a fantasy.”
    Cherish it!” cried Hilarious, fiercely. “What else do any of you have? Hold it tightly by it’s little tentacle, don’t let the Freudians coax it away or the pharmacists poison it out of you. Whatever it is, hold it dear, for when you lose it you go over by that much to the others. You begin to cease to be.

    The Crying of Lot 49

    Here is one more:

    Life’s single lesson: that there is more accident to it than a man can ever admit to in a lifetime and stay sane.

    (from the novel) V.

    And finally one about science in our days of the information overlaod:

    The general public has long been divided into two parts; those who think that science can do anything and those who are afraid it will.

    Mason & Dixon

    My bottom line is: It is difficult to stay sane and in times of (relatively) little confusion, this is one of those (costly!) insights, we are quite ready put aside quite easily.
    Alas: Time to revive this insight about the importance to try (=to cultivate it) to stay sufficiantly (mentally) faithful (& sane).
    (That was it for today – I’m out in the woods now as long as the sun is up.)

    • Hail says:

      “The general public has long been divided into two parts; those who think that science can do anything and those who are afraid it will.”

      This quote from the novel Mason & Dixon (1997) strikes me as presaging the Corona-Panic phenomenon, identifying (perhaps) important elements of the Pro-Panic and Anti-Panic coalitions.

      The class of people who thought “science could do anything” had grown larger, more confident, and more insulated by the 2010s, over anything previously imagined. Much of reality seemed to be floating somewhere in the ether (e.g., how people spoke of storage “in the cloud”—a good metaphor for the whole).

      This enlarged class of Science-utopians or “techno-narcissists” became the pool from which the Pro-Panic coalition was formed in early 2020. Overuse of technology itself fed and fueled the Panic, and they had no built-in mechanism to distrust The Science.

      The eventually successful (?) Anti-Panic counter-movement came to rely heavily on those who were “afraid science will do anything.”

      • Dieter Kief says:

        I’m glad you noticed this, Mr.Hail. Before I’ll leave again for the springtime woods, a few fast notes:

        Here is Thea Dorn, German novelist and – trained opera singer, – about the necessity to stay friends with death in modern times too – and what Thomas Mann knew about this stuff:

        (at minute 44: 00 ff. Thea dorn explains the intertwinedness of music, love, death and life – that is Thomas Mann’s theory of everything, if one would want to say so.

        I have repeatedly hinted at The Magic Mountain in the last two years of the Covid context. The most striking thing about the tuberculosis cures the happy few went through in Davos and a few other first remote, but after some time posh! places in the Alps before WW I was – as we know by now – the – at best! – complete medical uselessness of these cures. A giant alpine illness-theatre*** for the rich and famous with no medical benefits at all.
        ***here comes my habitual commercial to go study/read/enjoy Molières Imaginary Invalid

        A last very short reamark: Mann’s musings about WW I in Reflections of a Nonpolitical Man and The Magic Mountain and the – mystical – interwovenness of love/death/music (Achmed!) /life is at least strongly intertwined with – Christanity (Mann later wrote the novel-collection called Jospeh and his Brothers / The Josphs Novelds about the Old Testament and – confirmed this deep Christan layer of his earlier thoughts by – making them explicit).
        The thing is: To rely totally on science would work out just fine if only love, music and death (and the novelists…too) -and religion/tradition would not stand in this way.
        Even simpler: Mankind is prone to re-enact former, less sophisticated/elaborated ways of dealing with the type of serious (=existential) problems, its traditions have been developed to deal with, when it ignores those. – That’s how cults spring into existence, whenever serious problems arise that are not worked through in the appropriate (= mostly) traditional ways.
        Last remark: TV (and many online news formats) seem to be especially prone to this kind of dysfunctional shallowness. Not least by being too emotional, like in your FOX news example above.

        • Hail says:

          “Mankind is prone to re-enact former, less sophisticated/elaborated ways of dealing with the type of serious (=existential) problems”

          I agree. But “Covid” was not a true existential problem.

          There is something about the Corona-Panic which suggests a demand existed for a crisis. IOW, it was an artificial or unnecessary crisis.

          Maybe the true crisis was one of Technology, the shiny toys turning against us, a lived-reality form of the sci-fi trope of machines turning against us.

          • Jane says:

            Many (including myself) have noted how the Trump derangment kind of segued into, or se the scene for, the covid panic. People were primed to mount the psychic barricades and seemed to yearn for the “we” versus “them” narrative or attitude that presented as TDS.
            The name of Trump was frequently invoked to smear or discredit anyone who questioned the covid panic. So I think Trump hatred perhaps needs to be added to the Venn diagram.

            Oddly, or maybe no oddly, even though it is pretty clear that the Ukr mess really got going under Dem administrations, they have escaped any obloquy. Trump hatred has smoothly been passed to Putin hatred. I do think all of these panics overlap with Dem Party “home” hatred areas.

            Remember also the Pink Pussy hysteria.

  3. Hail says:

    Here is another, larger-sample-size view of a pro-Ukraine/anti-Russia protest in Germany which shows an unmistakably large masking rate outdoors among the protestors:

    How many non-masked people can you find? It’s hard to even find one; reminiscent of the children’s books/game “Where’s Waldo” (or “Where’s Wally” in the UK).

  4. Ahaa, I just came on here this morning, and here was some good reading waiting for me!

    I come at this thing with a different perspective from the likely 95% of Americans who haven’t disconnected completely from TV and even a big share of those who write on the good blogs who also watch. My only awareness of this whole thing has come from the conversations of friends who obviously DO watch the hell out of TV, reading the posts on my (very few) daily internet sites, and from seeing headlines by accident on the yahoo home page and such.

    Those headlines no longer regularly include the words “Covid”, “cases”, “omicron”, “Fauci”, “CDC”, and “swamped hospitals”. Now they regularly include the words “Ukraine”, “Putin”, “Russia”, “Putin”, “NATO”, “nuclear weapons”, and, yes, “swamped hospitals”. (The medical “industry” cleans up during panics. I mean “cleans up” here in the colloquial “makes a ton of money” sense.)

    I learned almost a week late that this new piece of Panictainment was really ongoing. Peak Stupidity‘s first post on this was on February 28th – “Peak Stupidity on the Ukraine”, although 3 weeks earlier, I did write the “Anarchy in the UKraine” post about the run-up to this war being a big distraction. From the later (in time) post:

    This could also be taken as peak stupidity OF the politics of the Ukraine/Russia/NATO, and it’s really more like Peak Stupidity on why we’ve NOT been discussing the Ukraine. Simply, it’s a big distraction.

    Well, I did end up discussing it some, and I’ve had my doubts too. Even the more reliable anti-CoronaPanic friends I know are all on this (though I do recall that they were a month or so late in being anti-Corona-Panic too, now that I look back). Commenters on iSteve and Peak Stupidity have me wondering if this happening is of a much bigger level of seriousness than the Kung Flu. (With no TV, I don’t keep up with many details.) For Americans, I concluded in my post asking “Is the Russia/Ukraine War another piece of Infotainment?”, YES, it is.

  5. Mr. Hail, your photos and discussion of the masked people, those in the center of that Venn Diagram may have answered a question of mine. “Are regular people really still panicked about the Kung Flu, or do they wear the masks to show compliance to The Establishment?” (That’d also explain why the still bitch about those of us who flaunt a little freedom – they don’t like they they are complying and I’m not.)

    I think that’s what it means. It’s simply about showing their agreement with the narratives, both the one tailing off and the new one. Those reporters who don’t bother with the masks? I’m sure they are glad to be rid of them (especially the pretty women), but they seem sure that the Corona Panic is no longer going on and they are not required to comply with that narrative anymore. They are loyalists, as you put it, to whatever Social Force is in vogue.

    • Jane says:

      “It’s simply about showing their agreement with the narratives, both the one tailing off and the new one.”

      Yes, there is definitely an element of the self-importance subset of virtue signaling (or maybe they are one and the same thing?) in mask wearing. I guess it is the Karen thing. Of course it looks a bit pathetic to those of us who never bought into the Kung flu narrative and only donned a mask fleetingly to pick up the mail. But obviously it does have importance to the egos and superegos of those who continue the wear their masks with pride.

      On aspect of this that strikes me as sad is that there is also an element that is some kind of genuine virtue: The desire to show that one is ready to pitch in for the general good and even to make a sacrifice for the general good. The desire to show community solidarity is commendable. it’s just that in this context it’s totally inappropriate and counterproductive.
      What the community really needs is tolerance of differing views, not adherence to rules “mandated” in the context of a fake public health emergency. If the people wearing masks would devote the same energy to picking up and disposing of the mask trash all over the place, we might be getting somewhere!!

  6. Your post answers some questions and brings up some more, Mr. Hail. Here’s one: Is this another Panic for which the dividing line pro-or-con crosses normal political lines again?

    I think, at least for the last year (1/2) of the Corona-Panic, Conservatives moved hard to the anti-Panic side, the vaccine being a big part of this. At this point with the Ukraine/Russia war, most of them seem to be down with the whole program, as in pro-Panic. Whoever ginned this one up as THE BIG STORY of ’22, if that’s the case, sure knew what he was doing. All that anti-Russia business over the last 5 years out of the left due to Orange Man Bad was opposed by Conservatives. Now, they (say, “Instapundit” Glenn Reynolds, just as an example) are joining in the fun. For both sides, Putin = Hitler*.

    What this make me think, from one normally steadfast friend in particular, is that the TV narrative is hard to shake. It can take months for many people, like last time around. (And, he does watch a lot.)

    I hope to see lots of discussion here. Thank you, Mr. Hail.


    * BTW, Ron Unz wrote an America Pravda column the other day with this in the title that I almost wholly agree with, a refreshing change.

    • Adam Smith says:

      Greetings, Mr. Newman,

      Americans, especially older Americans, have been conditioned to hate and fear Russia for their whole lives. And, unfortunately, mainstream conservatives tend to be a reliable pro-war constituency. Maybe they’ll come around in a few months?

      • Hail says:

        Keeping in mind Fox News’ roles as gatekeeper and agenda-setting institution on the Respectable Right in the USA, I point you to the the program called The Five of March 9, 2022. I listened to it, in podcast form, to check on which direction the rhetoric was shifting.

        The five geniuses on Fox News were not still wall-to-wall Ukraine-War-Panicking as of March 9, but it went far beyond that. I was genuinely shocked and disturbed that almost all their commentators, apparently, actively wanted war with Russia, or demanded some some loophole be poked through to get as many planes and bombs to Ukraine’s military as possible, or to arm a permanent insurgency against Russia even if they win, or to stage a any-means-necessary regime change in Russia in which Putin is Gaddafi’ed.

        They had whipped themselves into a froth in a way that was just overboard into crazy-person land. Only one of them was not for war, the comedian Greg Gutfeld.

    • Hail says:

      A reply to the question “Is this another Panic for which the dividing line pro-or-con crosses normal political lines?” is below.

  7. Adam Smith says:

    Good evening, Mr. Hail,

    So… I checked out to look at the headlines. There are 45 headlines, the main one reading “Russia escalates civilian attacks as siege enters third week”. There are three about Obi-Wan. There is one CoronaPanic related story. Most of the rest are Ukraine, Putin, Zelensky, Russian OIl, with some important ones like “Cameron Diaz doesn’t care what she looks like”.

    Funny how RussiaPanic put an end to CoronaPanic.
    Funny how there are so few undiapered faces in your protest photo.

    • Hail says:

      I wonder:

      On the Yemen War (for example), how many emotionalized CNN headlines have there been? Or the Syrian War, at its height?

      There have been some, but I don’t think they came even close to the Ukraine coverage. Both wars also had potential for regional destabilization.

      As for the Yemen War, still ongoing (and with lots of foreign-power interventions), the number of deaths is well into the hundreds of thousands. Maybe as high as 1.5% of the total population has died in all (= an average of around 0.2% of total population lost per year, now in the eighth year). The toll includes war-related deaths from starvation and several severe cholera outbreaks besides battle deaths and all.

      (The difference with Ukraine is that all the Yemen losses are more than replaced by births; TFR=6 in Yemen…)

      • Adam Smith says:

        Good morning, Mr. Hail,

        Joe Biden Stops Russian Oil Imports:
        “We’re not going to get gas from a country the violates people’s rights and isn’t progressive. We’re going to get our oil from Saudi Arabia!”

        I think regime media does not report much about Yemen or Syria because those are “good wars”.
        Putin on the other hand is a genocidal mad man who does not even pledge allegiance to our flag.

        I’m a little surprised cnn isn’t running with some sort of headline about Putin eating babies.
        Or Russian soldiers taking babies out of incubators and smashing their heads on the floor.

        Sure, there was a time when Syria received a bit more coverage (nothing like Ukraine is currently enjoying), but that was when Assad was still an evil tyrant who gassed his own people and before Russia stepped in to help the Syrians repel the Israeli invaders.

        Yemen, never received much coverage…
        Even when there were rumors of a tactical nuke being used in that conflict.

        I went back to this morning for a little Ctrl-F fun…

        America – 3
        Russia – 36
        Ukraine – 21
        Poland – 3
        Syria – 1
        Yemen – 0
        Inflation – 2
        Oil – 1
        War – 16
        Covid – 1
        Corona – 0
        Virus – 0
        Vaccine – 1 (6 facts about the Shingles vaccine)
        Mask – 1 (Don’t throw away your masks yet!)
        Pig Heart – 2

        Russia Escalates Civilian Attacks remains the top headline.

        Amazing how quickly the propagandists changed gears…
        And how quickly the masses changed with them…

        We’ve always been at war with the CoronaVirus in Eurasia.

      • Dieter Kief says:

        “War is a big asshole magnet (ipse dixit).” – Wrote the ever so great P. J. O’Rourke in his – essay-travel-writing mix-piece Bosnia – The Multicultural society.(And O’Rourke does explain that there too with very good examples.) “Bosnia” is in All the Trouble in the World, 1994.

        Jared Diamond and his beloved Southern Pacific islanders come to my mind too. This one is funny because, Diamond describes in minute detail in The World Until Yesterday on quite a few pages, how these hunter/gatherers/peasants/ gardeners in West-Papua (whom he knew very well)  engage in all kinds of warfare all the time. Not least in their fantasies… But it simply does not occur to him to step back and reflect on what he sees (and encounters even) in the dozens of months he did spend with them.
        My thought in a shorter version: “The Five” of March 9, 2022 might not be so crazy and but rather regressive (or – childish).Even shorter: TV thrives on action. – They do their (well paid…) jobs – and secure them too while talking this way, because fantasizing about war is thrilling. And it works. TV news works that way, but they sould better not be working that way, that is clear. Yerkes/ Dodson’s excitement-curve delivers the details from deep down in our souls: The two psychologists showed that our cognitive abilities need a mid-temperature level so to speak to work properly. When the emotions go too high (or too low) our mind starts to lack precision.

        We need a news-media ethic according to these insights. Paragraph 1 – 5:
        1) Don’t dramatize the news.
        2) Talk in a restricted, rather humble way.
        3) Try to inform people, don’t try to move them.
        4) Don’t talk and think for your audience.
        5) Make clear if there are alternatives to the practice x you are reporting about; bring the spectrum of ideas surrounding a cause.

  8. Hail says:

    From twitter user @flakyou on the Corona-Panic vs. Ukraine-War-Panic Venn diagram:

    “bio terror threat seems to be in the overlap area. Look how the narrative is tying the latest two together.”

    See, e.g.: “White House warns Russia could use chemical weapons in Ukraine, rejects false ‘conspiracy’ of U.S. biolabs” (Washington Post, March 10, 2022).

    This “biolabs” story emerged out of the conspiracy-fringe in late February 2022 (including showing dubious maps of purported locations of the secret biolabs, with indications Russians were moving directly at some of them in their advances) with attention to the war. But the “US-funded biolabs in Ukraine” definitely predates the war by many years. Pro-Russian media and social media accounts first begin circulating the claim in early 2018, always citing Russian-language sources, with a scattering of deep-conspiracy-theory-level references even earlier than 2018.

    There was some thought that Putin would push for a settlement of the Ukraine Question in the early 2020s (as his expected retirement approaches in the 2020s), by war if necessary. Those 2018 stories may have been seeding of the ground for pressing the matter in the early 2020s. “Secret biolabs”-like stories are just the kind that intelligence agencies create and circulate for their own purposes. Hold fast to the old maxim caveat emptor applied to news-consumption.

    This “US-funded bio-labs in Ukraine” story, though, appeared to be confirmed in a strange exchange between Senator Rubio and a notorious Neocon now one of the highest figures in the State Department, Victoria Nuland, on the afternoon of March 8. It got big play on March 9, and now the US regime media is cleaning up.

    As for this story’s place in our venn diagram: while it’s true that something about allegations of bio-terror belong in the middle of the venn diagram, the difference is that the people making noise about it are war opponents in this case (including, predictably, Tucker Carlson).

  9. Hail says:

    Mr. Newman, of Peak Stupidity, posed this question above:

    “Is this another Panic for which the dividing line pro-or-con crosses normal political lines again?”

    Several conflicting thoughts occur to me on question. Let me offer this as a baseline of where the Ukraine-War-Panic comes from.

    (1) Early 1990s: Anti-Russia feelings in the US fade quickly (per polling).

    (2) The period 2013 to 2017: A new form of active anti-Russianism returns (per polling), first because of lack of Gay Rights in Russia, then over an eclectic mix of other things including Crimea and the Ukraine civil war of 2014-15.

    (3) As of spring 2015, people identifying as Republicans were (still) more anti-Russia than Democrats (largely in an old-line, Cold War, tough-on-defense, fight-them-over-there, almost-stereotypical kind of way):

    (4) 2016: The new anti-Russianism (this could stand for a more neutral name) gets mixed into anti-Trump politics. By April 2017, an unprecedented partisan split has begun to emerge

    (5) A larger process that played out in the 2000s and especially 2010s was the Democrats becoming open and explicit allies of the “National Security State” and US intelligence agencies. That they slid into being anti-Russia hawks was part of this. Meanwhile the Right became deeply skeptical of any anti-Russia talk with the Russia-Gate mania. The partisan split on attitudes towards Russia had widened by 2019.

    (6) Because of media-power and “agenda-setting” influence by the Left, eventually there was a unification of purpose. hen asking the right question, you still see the divide. But the power of the Megaphone is also clear:

    These polls conceal “passion of support,” and degree of broad-elite and narrow-elite support. The elite could have defused tensions but chose to keep them up. This comes down to a multi-sided failure of diplomacy including by the US, to simplify it a little.

    The partisan divide in the US is less notable to me than the huge margins expressing views hostile to Russia:

    “The dividing line pro-or-con,” in terms of popular opinion, is reminiscent of the early days of the Corona-Panic. By that I mean a seeming monolith of opinion on one side and a wave of somewhat reckless, dangerous, emotionalized talk.

    This poll of the NATO countries’ public opinion in Jan 2022 really hit it home:

    (Why would the US, many thousands of miles away, have the strongest opinions on the Ukraine-Russia dispute, far above many nearby Europeans?)

    I conclude that one important source of the “dividing line” on the Ukraine-Russia question can be found in two main places: (1) the polling over the past five years or so (who was already anti-Russia or non-anti-Russia), and (2) those willing to be on the minority side out of principle during a time groupthink seems to take over. There are other constituencies also, including some Hard Leftists who oppose the US as a matter of course (think Godfrey “China Shill and Proud of it” Roberts), some principled non-interventionists of the Ron Pau school, and a core of intellectual foreign policy specialists and academics and the like, who have been talking about this problem for years, back at least to George Kennan stressing it in the 1990s (in his nineties).

    These new coalitions end up looking a lot like the Corona coalitions of Pro-Panic vs Anti-Panic (with Corona-Panicker seeming to extend to Ukraine-War-Panicker in a lot of cases). But there are people who either drop out or switch sides.

    Influential conservative columnist Rod Dreher. was a Corona-Panicker and spent all of 2020 at least Coronapanicking, bashing and slamming Covid-Deniers, criticizing Trump for not locking down hard enough, and generally doing his patriotic part to reinforce the Panic. It was highly undignified, really. But now has come out affirmatively against intervention in the Ukraine war.

    What I’d be interested in is a 2×2 square of
    Corona Pro-Panic + Ukraine Pro-Panic
    Corona Pro-Panic + Ukraine Anti-Panic
    Corona Anti-Panic + Ukraine Pro-Panic
    Corona Anti-Panic + Ukraine Anti-Panic

    Who goes in each?

    • Hail says:

      A proposal for a 3×3 version is below.

    • First of all, thanks for putting all that work into your answer – it should be a post of its own, IMO.

      As much as I LUV graphs or all sorts, I have had only one experience with polling in the last 20 years – Gallup, as described in “I’ve been Polled”, and it was terrible. However, if I leave that alone, I am encouraged by the CBS one – your 4th one down – with the “Stay Out” responses. I also think that a lot of the “Don’t Know” and “No Opinion” responses could be the best answers many people would be left with, seeing as “Don’t Give a Flying F__k” is usually not one of the standard answers. My experience was that there were no good answers for MOST of the questions or that they varied by so little in answering the question that one couldn’t give useful information.

      Yeah, a big mass of people are believers this time again early on (believers in “OMG! This is the end of the world!) again. As I wrote, I think it takes a while to shake off the initial influence of the TV and major web sites, who are all on-board with the narrative together.

      It’s a whole lot different if you never get bombarded by all the hype to begin with. That’s why the Amish meme “We don’t get Covid. We don’t have a TV” rings so true.

      PS: I’m curious about the quick rise in that first graph in ’08-’09. It must have had to do with rhetoric during the election (maybe on the McCain side?).

      • Hail says:

        “I am encouraged by the CBS one – your 4th one down – with the “Stay Out” responses”

        The date on this Negotiations around Ukraine and Russia” (‘around’?) is two weeks before the invasion. The US media was pushing the Russia/Ukraine story at the time, but the invasion itself was still something uncertain and in the future. I definitely did not expect it when it came.

      • Hail says:

        “I’m curious about the quick rise in that first graph in ’08-’09. It must have had to do with rhetoric during the election (maybe on the McCain side?).”

        That would be one the brief Russia–Georgia war during the Beijing Olympics of 2008.

        The instigator of that war seems to have been the colorful and almost cartoonish figure of Mikheil Saakashvili.

        After losing the war and Russia creating two client micro-states as buffers, Saakashvili later was run out of Georgia, renounced his Georgian citizenship, and floated around before surfacing in Ukraine. Somehow he was then elected governor of a disputed region in Ukraine (you cannot make this stuff up). Then, after being run out of Ukraine and having a mental breakdown (I think), he was last seen renting a cheap room in Brooklyn, doing menial jobs to pay the rent, something like that.

        • That explains it then. Thanks. I remember the small war in Georgia now, but I was of the same mindset as now: “Who cares. We need to stay out of it.” (Of course we didn’t.)

          Regarding your first reply, OK, I hadn’t noticed the date.

  10. Hail says:

    Clash of the narratives:

    EU may force Ukraine refugees to get Corona-Vaccine” (via Daily Sceptic)

    Most Ukrainians told pollsters in 2021 they don’t want the vaccine and would never get it. Total vaccination rate, 35%…

    • Hahaaa!

      BTW, slight WP bug – it originally filled in the info for “Ants bug” and his blog this time. I don’t see that as anyone’s website here, but it’s also not one that I recall ever going to. Weird.

      • Hail says:

        Who is “Ants bug”?

        • Ahhaa, just as I saw this and started to put my email address in to reply, I saw it again.

          It’s “antsblog” – I got it wrong, because I wrote over the fields quickly last time, but let me paste in what it put in the website field:

          I won’t put the guy’s name/email (that got filled in for me) here, as this is kind of a security lapse on the part of WordPress. Have you been to this blog, or do you know of one of your commenters who has this?

          [EDIT, after saving this comment above and then reloading your page:]
          The next thing that happened is that, when I mashed “Post Comment”, I got to a WP page telling me that I was using the wrong email address to log in. (I guess, to the antsblog guy’s acct.)

          • Hail says:

            I don’t know how to explain this.

            No one has ever used “antsblog2016” here (comment archive search), so it’s not a left-over from something on this end.

  11. Hail says:

    On the 2×2 square that I proposed above:

    It works better as a 3×3, adding Neutrals.

    Corona Pro-Panic + Ukraine Pro-Panic
    Corona Pro-Panic + Ukraine Anti-Panic
    Corona Pro-Panic + Ukraine Neutral

    Corona Anti-Panic + Ukraine Pro-Panic
    Corona Anti-Panic + Ukraine Anti-Panic
    Corona Anti-Panic + Ukraine Neutral

    Corona Neutral + Ukraine Pro-Panic
    Corona Neutral + Ukraine Anti-Panic
    Corona Neutral + Ukraine Neutral

    Everyone fits in one of these categories. Who goes where? And especially of interest is their position during the critical periods of each of the ‘Panics.’

    These ‘Pro’ and ‘Anti-‘ labels refer to attitudes towards the ‘Panics’ themselves. Someone could be highly pro-Ukraine but “Ukraine Anti-Panic.”

    To make it more concrete: someone openly opposed to lockdowns and all the other “Covid”-related disruptions and mandates and digital-health-passes was/is “Corona Anti-Panic.” On Ukraine, someone who even amid a Panic like this remains against US intervention, and against or critical of the hyperfocus on the Ukraine war (there has been almost no other ‘news’ in the US, it seems, for two weeks), and critical of skeptical of the saturation-propaganda we get, that person would be “Ukraine Anti-Panic.”

    By “Neutral” I mean someone going along with the majority and accepting whoever seems to control the heights of discourse, but not necessarily being active or passionate. In any case lacking the will or wherewithal to push the issue or spend your mental energy on it. Neutrals will tend to agree with whomever they last talk to on it.

    I gave Rod Dreher as an example above. He would fit in “Corona Pro-Panic + Ukraine Anti-Panic.” The original idea of this post, suggested by the imagery of tightly-masked and uniformly-masked pro-Ukraine protestors, those people of course would be “Corona Pro-Panic + Ukraine Pro-Panic.”

    • Adam Smith says:

      Good morning, Mr. Hail,

      That would make me a strong anti-panicker on both counts.

      • Hail says:

        Where would you put Steve Sailer? in the 3×3 early-2020s-panic-matrix?

        During the critical periods of both “panics.” Do you think it’s:

        “Corona Pro-Panic + Ukraine Neutral”?

  12. Zhao says:

    Hello mar Hail. I linked over from Kunstler blog. Am new to your pages. Interesting. I’ll explore your thoughts in the coming days.

    About your Venn overlays, what about adding a blue/red/neutral, anti trump/pro trump/neutral element to the calculation?

    Ahhhh, the masked Ukraine protestors…. The masks are the signals of virtue and righteousness -of persons who desperately want “authorities” to think and decide for them – to give their empty lives some meaning, to define what one must do to be part of the herd/tribe.
    I wonder about the desperate anxiety these folks feel in those brief periods of no manufactured existential crisis.

    I also wonder about how the earliest and most ardent masking volunteer citizen brigadiers were those who equated it with being anti-Trump and a tool to defeat him at the elections. Keep masking to keep the infectious populism down! A correlation with perceptions of how to maintain an unchanging and under control world.

    • Hail says:

      Greetings, Zhao.

      “I also wonder about how the earliest and most ardent masking volunteer citizen brigadiers were those who equated it with being anti-Trump and a tool to defeat him at the election”

      Scott Atlas, then the special advisor to the president on “Covid,” says this was his conclusion after observing the White House Covid Task Force and related goings-on in the White House. It was political not just from the anti-Trump people but also from the Trump people.

    • Hail says:

      Re: Zhao

      “About your Venn overlays, what about adding a blue/red/neutral, anti trump/pro trump/neutral element to the calculation?”

      Definitely that is possible.

      To start, we would need to step back to 2020 and the key weeks or months of the Corona-Panic, its formation, breakthrough, and early-consolidation phases, and seek to assign people to one of nine categories:

      Pro-Trump and Corona-Pro-Panic
      Pro-Trump and Corona-Anti-Panic
      Pro-Trump and Corona-Neutral

      Anti-Trump and Corona-Pro-Panic
      Anti-Trump and Corona-Anti-Panic
      Anti-Trump and Corona-Neutral

      Trump-Neutral and Corona-Pro-Panic
      Trump-Neutral and Corona-Anti-Panic
      Trump-Neutral and Corona-Neutral

      Doing some kind of society-wide fill-in of these nine boxes would be a great task for someone, but tricky to get right given what the Corona-Panic was.

      As Peak Stupidity mentions above (and something I wrote about in one of my early “against the Corona-Panic” posts, about early April 2020), one the most interesting thing about the original Corona-Panic as social phenomenon was that it (at that time) clearly cut across the established lines, creating new ‘political’ coalitions of its own, which have held in part into 2022. Much of the post “Scenes from the Defeat the Mandates rally” (Jan. 2022) deals with this.

  13. hermod says:

    Hail, The Eddy Bernayz account you quoted was banned by Twitter on 5 March.

  14. Dieter Kief says:

    Mr. Hail wrote: “But “Covid” was not a true existential problem.”

    Well, it was an existential crisis for the vulnerable. For all those maltreated, who died. For those hit by the lockdowns. For the people whose businesses were closed etc. pp.
    Seen from an individual perspective (and that’s how the liberal (in the traditional sense) is looking at the world: From the perspective of the individual, – there is an existential crisis for quite some people.

    Now I wonder, if somebody has looked at the Covid case/death numbers the Hutterites and the Amish did see in the last two years. I remember an Amish spokesman saying in a decent little TV-feature about the Amish and Corona, that economically 2020 was the best year ever for them. – Did somebody look into other social/medical data from them?

    What about the data from New Zealand and Australia. I’ve just heard the medical doctor and scientist and covid-podcaster Michael Osterholm say to Joe Rogan, that in New Zealand, 50 people per million died of Covid and this number ‘d be 1250/million inhabitnats in Minnesota. He also said that in 2021, hospitals in Minnesota were still severely under stress and thus unable to fulfill their purpose properly during months. They ran ads, that they could not take care of people when they’d have a heart attack or some other medical condition that would have made it necessary to act quickly. At times, people waited for two days, before an intensive care doctor could treat them. That all sounds a lot like a real crisis of proportions I would not have thought to be seen in the US, frankly. Nothing like that happened in Germany or Austria, let alone Denmark, Norway and Switzerland. People would have freaked out here if something like that would have happened, I imagine. Btw. – Michael Osterholm is no general lock-downer – for him lockdowns are a means to prevent hospitals from overload.
    #1779 – Michael Osterholm · The Joe Rogan Experience (

  15. Hail says:

    Jane wrote, above:

    “The desire to show community solidarity is commendable”

    There is no doubt about it, this was one of Corona-Panic’s keys to success.

    Except that it represented the turning of a strength into a weakness. Even a catastrophic weakness, given the damage the Panic did. The effects we will still feel for some time even after the last of the masks and mandates and disruptions are gone. It partly seemed like such a good idea at the time because “community solidarity” seems “commendable”!

  16. hermod says:

    March 14, ’22

    “Doctors fear chaos of war in Ukraine could fuel new Covid19 surge…..”

  17. Dieter Kief says:

    People like it to hate collectives – the others. It provides them with wellbeing.

    To panic means to hate, too.

    • Hail says:

      See also: Carl Schmitt’s definition of the political.

      A theme I have consistently written and spoken of for two years is that there were two new political coalitions in the Corona-Panic, Pro-Panic vs. Anti-Panic — in favor of the Corona-Panic vs. actively against the Panic. The specifics are less important than the attitudes.

      Both were/are coalitions of separate interests, in part, which ‘found’ each other during the Corona-Panic period. Both view (or have viewed) the other group as morally illegitimate, or dangerous, or stupid.

      I am admittedly an Anti-Panic partisan. The problems for those in favor of Coronapanicking is they were objectively wrong on many facts, they broke the implied liberal-democratic social contract to use authoritarian practices to enforce their will, many of them detached themselves from reality, and their end-goals seem like a net-loss for the ongoing project of positive-civilization (safetyism vs. achievement and greatness; they are enemies).

      The Corona-Panickers, and the demagogues attached to them, were/are a political community in Schmittian terms, just not a healthy one.

      • Dieter Kief says:

        John Mearsheimer matter of factly talks about the status of the law in a conflict between nations at war and comes up with this Schmittian formula for war-times: Might beats right.
        Günter Maschke died in March, a German political thinker/activist who oscillated between the extreme left and the far right. Carl Schmitt liked him a lot and debated him (what was difficult, because Maschke was at times physically unable to listen, as it seemed…but in the case of Carl Schmitt whom he revered, he might have made an exception. It turned out that Carl Schmitt became Maschke’s life-long intellectual guards-man after he had switched sides to the right. Whether he was in the revolutionary Cuba of Fidel Castro or in Peru entangledwith the Luminous Trail or – in comparatively sleepy West-Germany/Germany. All he suffered there from was, that from a certainpoint in the Sixties on he withdrew from the FAZ, which had published him regularly. That led to the fortification of his cult-statusin some rather right-wing circles but also to a lack of resonance with the more regular conservatives, which hurt him because it hurt his status as a controversial figure in the public life of Germany. It had been interesting for him to be a controversial public figureand the lack of contradictions from the more regular conservatives did hurt him.
         The other prominent – intellectual – who had close ties to Carl Schmitt in the last decades was Frankfurt 68er/anachist/realist comedian Matthias Beltz lawyer and (for years!) factory worker at the Opel factory in Rüsselsheim, a comrade of Joschka Fischer). For Beltz the Schmitt-reference was at play whenever he attacked the snow-flakes in the left (avant la lettre), and when he did cut the ties from the left to the terrorist left.- Know your enemies was Beltz’ Schmittian motto, which – liberated him and enabled him to make fun of outright everybody he liked to make funof – not least feminists and other kinds of detatched from reality figures of his milieu as the super-morally super lefties who – 1990 ff. tried to eradicate hate (!) from the public debates and the publicsphere altogether. Not with Beltz though: He named (!) a few of those leftist icons and then said: “You gotta know where your enemies live to be able to find and – kill them, as Mother Theresa would have put that.” – He got away with quasi everything he wanted to, and not least because nobody was ever sure whether or not he was serious about his Carl Schmitt references/quotes (oh yes, he was…).  So – for Beltz, Schmitt worked perfectly well, I’d say until his sudden death at 57 in 2002which was a big loss.

        For Maschke Schmitt worked not so well. His schmitt-ties gave him lots of status: That Schmitt corresponded with him and debated with him, and that he wrote books about Schmitt…. But he did not really know what to make of the dynamic that resukted from that: He self-isolated himself by attacking not only the bourgeoisie, but also the citoyens (in a practical sense, it turned out that there was not much difference between the two…).So, in the end (in his last two decades) Maschke was rather stuck in the corner of sharp minded misanthropist conservatism. It had turned out that he had painted into this corner too, I’d hold.
        Carl Schmitt is good as an antidote to the idea (= the illusion), the world would be necessarily peaceful and friendly and – hate would be necessarily a bad thing (NO, Matthias Beltz said, time and time again. Eradicate hate, and you’ll be left standing naked in the rain without love. “No love without hate – as simple as that!!” – A theme Beltz loved to variate.

        As soon as Carl Schmitt’s thinking is transformed into a strategic tool to act within the regular democratic world, it is rather helpful in the way Matthias Beltz had made use of it: To help avoid illusions about the antagonisms that run not least through your own camp. – In the end it helped Beltz to stay good humoredeven though he was a leftist, so to speak.
        Michael Klonovsky would be another example of an artist/novelist/essayist who is deeply interwoven with politics. And who uses Carl Schmitt as an antidote.
        These uses of Carl Schmitt I like. As I liked the darker ways in which Ernst Jünger made use of Schmitts thinking. In Jüngers case it worked out even better, in that his Schmittianism I think is the root cause that Jünger was so attractive for all kinds of conservatives and leftists alike – from Helmut Kohl and Francois Mitterand to the GDR playwright (Cement, Tractor, Volokamsk Highway, HamletMachine)  and essayist Heiner Müller and LSD-chemist Albert Hofmann from Basel. 
        If I look at the Corona-discourse in Germany, Austria and Switzerland, the Swiss variant was the most productive one and it had it’s Schmittian moments when Roger Köppel(SVP/Die Weltwoche//Weltwoche Daily opposed the doctors and nurses who said lockdowns were necessary, because the Swiss hospitalscould not work properly without them. Roger Köppel did make the big difference here and was able to stop unreasonable(=panic-driven) arguments. And Köppel argued furiously and courageously to achieve this goal. he saw his enemies in that moment and attacked them with a well channelled aggression that left deep tracesand help the anti-panickers to look through the falsehood of the supposedly humane panic. No, Roger Köppel claimed again and again, this is not humanethis is cowardice and unwillingness to  do the necessary work in the name of a fake u´humanism. That was one of the moments in the Swiss debate that helped change course, and that I loved and embraced wholeheartedly the moment I spotted Roger Köppel to kick this debate off.
        Now comes the tricky part: There are lots of people in the middle of society, whom you want to win over in rational exchanges not only of arguments,but also of stories life told us during the pandemic. And here confrontation does not work so good, and here is another tone necessary. That of the patientand enlightening discourse. In this regard, Robert Putnam (see his essay E Pluribus Unum) is the productive incarnation of Schmitt’ ideas. As is Steve Sailer’s citizenship idea. So – Carl Schmitt alone won’t do any more. But without Carl Schmitt, John Mearsheimer’s Ukraine-analyses would be impossible as would have been Matthias Beltz’ razor blade wit and humor…

        By and large I think traditions (faith), reasons, stories, wit, love (compassion/faith) and arguments are what count.
        Here is Michael Klonovsky’s interview with Günter Maschke
        Interview aus dem Jahr 2020 mit Günter Maschke: Das Politische heißt: Verschwörungen – Michael Klonovsky – eigentümlich frei (

        And here is Frank Böckelmann’s (TUMULT-editor) epitaph for Günter Maschke

        And here  are12 minutes of the comedian Matthias Beltz, which (not only in retrospect) sound so aggressive, that you wouldn’t have thought that something like that would have been accepted at all (let alone by the left! 1990 ff.)

  18. Hail says:

    Two more Ukraine and Corona-Panic observations:

    (1) March 18, 2022, Moscow, a large pro-war rally with tens of thousands of people in Russia:

    I see zero masks in this pro-Putin rally. A big visual contrast with the pro-Ukraine rallies of three weeks or so earlier, in Western Europe, which opens this post.


    (2) March 20, 2022: CNN Cougher.

    One of CNN’s correspondents in Ukraine visited a “laser tag” facility that had been converted into a shelter for displaced people. Kids running around. People loitering, chatting, eating. Lots of people. Enclosed space.. No masks. No ‘distancing.’ No mention of the Wuhan Apocalypse Virus.

    It’s even funnier than that, though: The CNN correspondent, as he mingles with the crowd of Ukrainians and does the CNN-mandated human-interest-story propaganda, the CNN man is coughing intensely on all these displaced people. He can hardly get more than a few lines out between bouts of coughing.

    It’s funny to watch. Almost comical. He is trying to be very serious in his reporting but keeps coughing. At one point between coughs, the CNN man lamely tells the people back in the studio, “Oh, sorry, I’ve got a cold” (!). Nothing more to see here!

    No one mentions the “C” word. His “I’ve just got a cold” is of no interest at all.

    The CNN Cougher is not wearing a mask, nor one of those “I am a doofus” face-shields, nor gloves, nor is he using ‘hand sanitizer,’ nor is he “practicing social distancing,” whatever else. Just nothing. No one is wearing a mask. Not the coughing CNN man, not the refugees, no one. All are in this enclosed indoor space with each other. He tells the viewers of all the rough experiences they’d been through.

  19. Hail says:

    Interesting poll results

    Canadian attitude towards Ukraine interventions, majorly split by “Vaccine status”:

    • Nice find, Mr. Hail! That is great support for your thesis here. I wouldn’t think there’d be a great difference between Americans and Canadians on this as far as the divide between the vaxxed, minimally vaxxed, and unvaxxed goes. I may post this same thing on Peak Stupidity.

      Regarding your comment before this one, about the cougher*. I could probably dig it up with a search on “CNN Ukraine laser tag facility” or something like this, but if you have a link, I’d greatly appreciate it. I’m easily amused, and the inadvertently amusing things are sometimes the MOST amusing.


      * Ha, for a second I’d seen “CNN Cougher” and though, “oh, I can search for that guy”, thinking that was the reporter. (Believe me, I haven’t purposefully watched that crap in years, so I wouldn’t know the names other than those written about elsewhere.)

  20. Hail says:

    After some effort, I was able to track down the “CNN Cougher” report (6 minutes; high rate of coughs-per-minute). For easy reference, I’ve hosted it at Bitchute, but nothing seems to be uploading properly there. Try one of these to see if any work by the time you see this:

    [removed and deleted other upload attempts]

    File name at Bitchute: “CNN coughs, MASKLESS!, on Ukraine refugees.”

    The reporter’s name is Ivan Watson; the place is the Dnipro laser-tag center; the date is March 20, 2022; the program was CNN Newsroom Live.

    The subtext is remarkable to me, total nonchalance about coughing is remarkable to me, given two years of virus-propaganda from this same news network and most others.

    What would happen if the CNN Cougher did turn out to be “positive for The Virus”? Would there be any punishment, any ritual denunciations, villifcation, firing, fines, even jail time for this homicide-by-virus maskless coughing spree? These kinds of things, lest we forget, literally happened during the Peak-Panic period…

    • Your first link worked, Mr. Hail, so I stopped checking there. This will make a fine quick Peak Stupidity post! I have a pretty calibrated eyeball, in English units, and after doing the coughing, Ivan Watson got within 18″ of the skinny guy he interviewed, with no face masks in sight.

      Man, it would be funny if Ivan Watson’s next newscast is from back at the studio, while he’s being intubated at that, haha.

      The next week: “We’ve lost long-term correspondent Ivan Watson. He was known to have had Covid-19, but his death was not FROM the Covid-19, folks, so don’t worry. He was grazed last week in the forearm by a .223 round, and therefore his death has been certified a death FROM small arms fire by the head of the Ukrainian CDC, Dr. Anton Faucski.”

      Thank you for pointing this stuff out.

      • Hail says:

        CNN coughs, MASKLESS!, on Ukraine refugees.”

        An eyewitness, Erich Feiglovosky-Dingtonov, in a later emotional interview, said: “I’ve seen bombing, I’ve seen shooting, I’ve seen families huddled in basements, but THIS, this outrageous and callous coughing, MASKLESS, so close to children, it really shocks and terrifies me. PTSD from bombings, I can deal with; Long Covid, that’s too frightening to imagine. The Wuhan-Apocalypse-Virus is really my number one concern. So I want to put the CNN Cougher on trial for biological terrorism. Tell the people!”

  21. Hail says:

    Some commentary on the “Overlap of followers of the Kung Flu vs. anti-Russia narratives” (Peak Stupidity, March 28, 2022).

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