Why have so many people, including many skeptics, lost touch with reality during the covid pandemic? Plus: more “unreported covid truths” that are not really true.
During the coronavirus pandemic, a vast number of people, likely more than 95% of the global and Western population, appear to have lost touch with reality at some point.
This is obviously true for people who followed official guidelines and narratives. These hapless people really were misled from start to finish: on coronavirus origins (“animal market”), on coronavirus lethality in the general population (100x overestimation), on lockdowns (“two weeks to flatten the curve”), on face masks (“80% fewer infections”), on schools and children (“drivers of the pandemic”), on mass testing (“test, test, test”), on vaccine protection (“fully vaccinated”), on vaccine side effects (myocarditis, stroke and more), on vaccine passports (“the only way out of the pandemic”), on covid treatment (ventilators, remdesivir, paxlovid), and on several other issues.
But it is also true for many covid skeptics. There were quite a few skeptics who denied the existence of SARS-CoV-2, or didn’t believe it was a novel virus, or thought they simply rebranded the flu, or denied there was a pandemic and excess mortality, or who denied vaccine protection against severe disease and death, or denied the reality of “long covid”, or who greatly exaggerated vaccine side effects (“global depopulation”), or overstated early treatment benefits (“crushing the curve”), or believed in some other weird ideas (e.g. 5G radiation causing covid).
There were also some people who wanted to be “centrists” – a political rather than a scientific position – which in practice meant calling the lab leak hypothesis a “conspiracy theory”, largely ignoring the very real vaccine safety issues, and not questioning the push for “vaccine passports”.
What caused this widespread loss of reality? Several factors may have been at play:
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