NBC News speculated that the shift millions of Americans have made to working, learning, and interacting with friends and family online will be difficult to roll back. “The major question will be whether ‘normal life’ ever returns,” this report concluded. And what about those of you who enjoyed socializing in the Before Time? Presumably, you won’t want to do that anymore.
Once you engage in this line of thinking, there’s no failsafe that stops the speculation from accelerating. “The way that we touch each other, the way that we hang out in parks, the way that we eventually will get to organized sports—which will probably be the last thing that we get to do—all of these things will change because of this virus,” said Dayton Ohio Mayor Nan Whaley.
At CNN, the transformation of our lives will be total, “says public health journalist.” It is “almost impossible” to forecast what our lives will look like in this pandemic’s wake, but “there will not be a single aspect of our lives that’s been unchanged.” I don’t know about you, but I can all but guarantee that, whatever comes next, I will continue to wear clothes, consume calories at least daily, and reside in a free-standing structure.
So, are these prognosticators right? I don’t know, but neither do they. One thing this unforeseen disaster should have taught us is a sense of humility, but that’s become yet another scarce commodity. The relentlessness of these and many more reports informing you that life as you knew it ended in March does strike a note of pornographic catastrophism, though. And the omnipresence of reports like these suggests there’s a substantial audience for sullen fortune-telling.
But when he comes to the goal, or the intention of the media in their misleading, his answer is curious. He claims that these journalists want to craft a narrative that makes them “sound smart.” But why would intentionally misleading the public regarding the coronavirus sound smart?
This is a very important question. The answer is that for months now, the media “narrative” Silver refers to has been that smart people know Trump bungled the response and to reopen the economy before the medical experts say it’s OK is tantamount to murder. The dumb people say that the Trump administration responded well in unprecedented circumstances and it’s time to start thinking about opening up.
So when Silver says these journalists want to “sound smart” what it really means is that they want to promote a progressive anti-Trump agenda. Now, let’s be honest that isn’t some deeply-guarded industry secret, but it’s telling that Silver won’t just come out and say it.
(Classical reference in headline.)