OPPOSING COVID-19 WITH OBEDIENCE


Response to the current crisis has been actioned mainly by authoritarian governments.

Authority requires people to obey, when they could transmit the disease to others by following their own beliefs. The disadvantage is for people who are compelled against their beliefs, who perceive evidence, inconvenience and reasons to take an opposed view.

Suppose a person is considering a COVID-19 edict about isolation, social distancing, work closure, or restrained shopping. When rules are definite and obedience is sanctioned by law, they might consider choosing one of 4 possible alternatives.

 

MAJORITY

PERSON
OBEY DISOBEY
OBEY 1-Conformist 3-Maverick
DISOBEY 2-Prototype 4-Matthew Effect

What are the social corollaries of these choices?

1-Conforming will pay off if the ruling is correct. Choice of dominant leadership by the majority is usual in a crisis but might be rejected as fascism when less urgent.

2-The protoype obeys when others don’t. Self-sacrifice could be involved and martyrdom is unlikely to change the outcome. Machiavelli might have recognised it as the worst choice.

3-A maverick disobeys, benefits from the majority’s obedience and pleases himself. He could be worsening the situation for the others. It is a selfish strategy, one that Machiavelli might have recognised as his best choice.

4-The Matthew Effect is going with the majority. The advantage is to hide in the crowd from rulers and from blame.

This simple analysis has been intended to describe choices that matter to everyone. Sled dogs must pull in the same direction.

http://www.martinknox.wordpress.com

 

About martinknox

Materially minimalist; gastronomically prefer food I cook; biologically an unattached male survivor; economically independent; sociologically a learner and teacher of science; psychologically selfaltruistic; anthropologically West Country English tenant farmer; religiously variable; ethically case by case; philosophically a sceptical Popperian.

Posted on March 27, 2020, in COVID-19 and tagged , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on OPPOSING COVID-19 WITH OBEDIENCE.

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