I want you to look at every bit of adversity around you and say something to yourself. I want you to say that this is a time intended to make you stronger. This is a time intended to toughen you. This is a time intended to grow and learn and to hone your weapons and skills, to temper your blades, to train yourself as a truly formidable warrior. This is a time happening for you. Life is happening for you. This moment, “the present,” is a gift for you.
Listen to me. I do not care what all these know-it-alls say. This is not the last stand. This is not the last opportunity. But if we do not win at this juncture, things are sure to get so much worse.
We need to beat back these mandates. We need to set these tyrants in order. We need to be on our knees asking the Almighty for wisdom and understanding. We need to be fighting the most meaningful fights around us, every single day, likely fights that are very local to us and very small in number, fights that may be so local and personal that they seem to affect no one but us. Once you win a few of those fights, you often start to see how much impact the thing you called “little” or “selfish” really had as it rippled out, far beyond anything you might ever have imagined possible. Those most important ripples, though, are in your own life when you fight such battles.
Flu season is upon us. Every year, respiratory viruses are more prevalent and many more die of respiratory virus related illnesses at this time of year. This year, like last year, they won’t call it flu. They will call it something more scary. Just like every year, people will die.
Anyone with a memory remembers knowing people who have had the flu and died. This is common of terminal cancer patients, late stage organ failure patients, and a host of other seriously ill.
Everyone with a memory remembers knowing people who has had pneumonia and died. This is common of people who have broken their hips or other bones and are laid up, people who spend lots of time in bed, people who have been frail, or people who are on in years.
Everyone with a memory remembers having had a cold that totally floored them, maybe for a week or two or even three. This has happened even to the healthiest among us. It has happened to everyone we know.
If you have a memory, then the biological consequences of what has been taking place since the Ides of March 2020 are nothing new. They are the same or at least relatively the same.
Is it a bioweapon from Wuhan? I don’t know. Do illegal immigrants carry it with them? I don’t know. I personally do not believe too much of what I do not see with my own eyes at this point, and those two narratives require me to believe the two biggest liars on earth — the US Government and the Chinese Communist Party. Those narratives also do not change my priority of living daily life more freely and helping other lions do the same. They may be nice to have answered, but they are largely distractions in my own life.
What I know, is that every year people get sick and die. It is usually about 1% of the US population that dies annually. About that many appear to have died last year, if I am to trust the data from the lying CDC. What is different since the Ides of March 2020, however, is the human response to this.
Today we stand at a pivotal moment in history. You can bemoan the situation or embrace it. If you be a lion, I need you to embrace it, to engage with unceasing focus in the most freedom-generating, immediately effective behaviors you can be engaged in.
And then I want you to focus on self-improvement after you are done — almost as important of a step as the actual act itself. Go home afterwards and take out a piece of paper. Divide the paper into three equal segments with a pen. One segment is “Right,” the next “Wrong,” the last “Next Time.” Take five minutes and ask yourself 1.) What did I do right? 2.) What did I do wrong? 3.) What could I do better next time? Jot down those answers. Dig deep. Put them to paper. It works way better if you do that. Then do better the next time. Your mistakes, the first time you make them, are no big deal. Fail to learn from them, and they become a big deal. These five minutes are very useful for identifying them, rather than repeating them.
There are many collectivists that have not escaped that mindset, yet who gladly have been converted to freedom. They are seeking to bring you under their umbrella and create massive, organized movements. There is something to be said for that. There are far better economies of scale, less wasted effort. That is an advantage. That is not a good enough of an advantage, though.
The real advantage is had by many, many small, disparate, relatively disconnected groups of people, and many, many more individuals, each doing their own thing, living life as freely as possible, fighting tyrants in their own lives, and spreading freedom in their own spheres of influence. I agree, it is disorganized and frustrating for those used to a corporate org chart, to those used to following top-down orders, there are poor economies of scale and accordingly a massive amount of resources “wasted,” but in exchange there is spontaneous order, there is entrepreneurial ingenuity, there is constant A/B testing, there is massive competition for those with the best approaches, and there is nearly unlimited redundancy.
Do you know what that means?
Thatmeans the enemy can’t chop the head off the “beast” of freedom. There is no head. There is no mass movement. There are thousands and maybe millions in each state increasingly living life that way. That is the change that matters — the change that happens in individual lives. I will trade that for a mass movement any day, in fact, it is what I have been working on for 18 months — avoiding the mass movement and rousing the individual lions. How fulfilling it is. And how well it works.
People bemoan why millions are not taking to the streets in America, like they are in France or Germany. Some even claim that to be a sign that there is “no resistance” in America. They fundamentally misunderstand America. When the average foot soldiers and loyalists of the political left become disenfranchised with the medical tyranny taking place, there will be mass demonstrations like that. That is a collectivist response. But that is not at the core of America.
At the core of America is small business, small church, family, small, direct, impactful charity, entrepreneurship, local community, boot straps, small farm, maybe even just a few plants in the backyard, niche methods of news distribution like the one you are reading now, cottage industry, local relationships. Every man is intended to be his own man. The Maker will one day look him in the eye and say “Why should I let you into my heaven?” and at that moment there won’t be an army of people around him to back him up. It will just be him and God. That idea is not lost in America. This is not collectivist; it is the very opposite, and it is the backbone of America.
Mark Twain wrote in Chapter 22 of The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, as Colonel Sherburn shouts down a mob:
“‘You didn’t want to come. The average man don’t like trouble and danger. You don’t like trouble and danger. But if only half a man—like Buck Harkness, there—shouts ’Lynch him! lynch him!’ you’re afraid to back down—afraid you’ll be found out to be what you are—cowards—and so you raise a yell, and hang yourselves on to that half-a-man’s coat-tail, and come raging up here, swearing what big things you’re going to do. The pitifulest thing out is a mob; that’s what an army is—a mob; they don’t fight with courage that’s born in them, but with courage that’s borrowed from their mass, and from their officers. But a mob without any man at the head of it is beneath pitifulness. Now the thing for you to do is to droop your tails and go home and crawl in a hole. If any real lynching’s going to be done it will be done in the dark, Southern fashion; and when they come they’ll bring their masks, and fetch a man along. Now leave—and take your half-a-man with you’—tossing his gun up across his left arm and cocking it when he says this.”
I do not use this to speak against an army. I use this to speak in favor of the bravery it takes to stand up as an individual.
The mass movement, the grand street protests, look amazing on film. I recognize there is value in that activity. The true work, however, is done in your own life, as you 1.) Encounter resistance to your freedoms, 2.) Say to yourself “This isn’t right,” and 3.) Figure out how to communicate successfully to the outside world that you need something different.
We are almost trained by Hollywood in such moments to yell silly things like “I’ll sue you” or “You’ll never work again in this town.” We are trained to escalate to a manager immediately, or to send a complaint letter, or to start threateningly video-recording on our phones. All of these things can be useful in the right moment. And at other times, probably most times, such drama is so out of place, unnecessary, and often distracting from any immediate resolution. The calm conversation, the negotiation of the situation, the ability to get another to honor your request is so important. So much of society is built upon that calm conversation.
Many things have come at you this past year. For some, it has been more adversity than they have ever known, such evil brought against their household unlike anything they’d ever imagined, a greater attack on their values than they have ever seen. You can handle this. And once you do, you can handle more. This is a very special time to be alive, and our daily lives are preparation for even more.
Those who have never worn a mask are unfazed by anything happening. They have been in training already 18 months and have grown into such formidable warriors. Every conversation they need to have about health mandates was perfected in their technique more than a year ago as they stumbled through face mask conversation after face mask conversation, finally developing the right rhythm and techniques that work best for them. In sharp contrast, those who wore a mask obediently, but drew a line at the Covid shot, are just putting on the training wheels and all at once they are really freaking out about the mandates that have been in the works publicly for at least 18 months. They were not ready, but the good news is that the lions among them will persevere and be ready for far worse.
If you can embrace these moments for the opportunities they are — opportunities to rise to the occasion — then you will find yourself doing exactly that. It is a game, and we are winning. It is a game, and I see all around me, the most amazing warriors prepping for battle, a mass of lions like I never knew existed on the earth.
And how could I? Nearly all of them were asleep until the Ides of March 2020. The enemy has no idea what he is up against.
It is a joy to count myself among this impressive pride.
Each one of us can stop the face mask nonsense in our own lives. “Face Masks in One Lesson” exists to help you do that, as do these LewRockwell.com pieces, and the email newsletter at RealStevo.com full of quick, easy to watch videos on how to make that and other bold steps a reality in your own life.