Another Step on the Road to Serfdom
The ability and willingness of individuals to self-assess their own level of risk by outsourcing it to government is diminishing us all.
I flew to Sydney last week to host the Bernardi show our of the Sky studios in North Ryde.
It was a good opportunity to meet the small team who make the television magic behind the scenes and reminded me how different personal versus digital communication is.
In a world where Zoom calls and Skype catchups are taking over, nothing beats actually meeting with someone to talk through ideas and get to know them. The personal interaction gives you a far greater bond and understanding of the other person than a video call ever will.
That's not to say I want to return to the days of regular business travel. After fourteen years of multiple flights per week, the last thing I look forward to is getting on a plane!
It's even more of an ordeal now than it used to be. Masking is compulsory, there are invasive questionnaires at beginning and end of journey plus a risk of being stranded at the whim of one State Premier or another.
I did find one moment a little unusual when I arrived back in Adelaide. The Covid checkin team greeted me by name with a cheery "hello Cory"(that's the price of infamy in some quarters), then followed up with "Your name please".
The bureaucracy can always makes you laugh...or cry!
What I took out of the journey though is that this Covid madness isn't going to end anytime soon. An entire industry has sprung up around protecting us from this new virus.
The fear has been sufficiently instilled in the populace that governments now have more control over our lives than ever before. And the people seem to like it!
Talk about surrendering personal autonomy without resistance.
For those of you still claiming that government knows best and has indeed saved us all from the new version of the black death, the facts don't support you. They have been covered on this website many times so I won't repeat them.
However I will iterate that managing risk is part of being a living, breathing human. We all make decisions every single day about how much risk to accept in our day to day existence.
Some of you may smoke. That's much more dangerous than Coronavirus.
Some choose to ride motorcycles, or skydive or cycle a pushbike on the road. All are potentially lethal activities but individuals make the decision to participate or not based on their own assessments and their desire to live their life as they choose to.
We don't need the government to tell us what we can and cannot do. So why do we need government to tell us to wear masks or not, or whether we can gather in restaurants or bars?
If masks stop you getting Corona can't people make that choice for themselves? If they stop you spreading Corona, again, if you have symptoms you can take appropriate precautions.
Just like we do with influenza and an assortment of other potentially lethal 'bugs'.
Similarly, if business operators wan't masks to be required as a condition of service, I have no problem with that. I'll comply if I want what they are selling.
Right now though, I think things have gone a little too far.
We are increasingly isolating ourselves from others with perspex barriers, masks and distancing wherever we turn. Our personal interactions are being reduced and replaced with digital ones.
Our self-determination and ability to undertake personal risk assessment decisions are being compromised every single day.
It seems to me we are losing a bit of what it actually means to be human. That may sound odd but when I think about it, this entire farce seems like just another step on the road to serfdom.