Street smarts remains essential

How do you know a topic is over and you won? Well, the opposition speaks your language and the head of a multi-million dollar media empire that dwarfs CNN, MSNBC, BBC and France24 together in terms of audience basically speaks the exact same words you’ve been speaking when you ushered in your own narrative.

Daily Wire is in top 10 largest podcast publishers (bigger than Disney!), in top 10 most widely read websites from the entire Internet and gobbles up 8 and sometimes 9 digits (!!) audience figures per day across platforms. In other words, Daily Wire is as mainstream as it can possibly be.

The video above, where Ben Shapiro (whose wife is a doctor – let’s not forget this 😂) speaks the language of the opposition effectively ends the conversation. So the pandemic project is over (even if you can still see pockets of Branch Covidianism on Twitter and Facebook). So, as this is slowly coming to an end, it’s time to ask, in all seriousness, what have we learned?

Reading back to the article I wrote at the beginning of this panic, almost three years ago, I have to say I’m sorry I was right on the 5th point. I was really hoping that I’d be proven wrong, and not too many little dictators would emerge. Unfortunately, human nature being what it is, things rolled more or less as I predicted. But the question is: How did I, and tens if not hundreds of millions of us across the Northern Hemisphere know?

No accident

I don’t have a Harvard Law education (thank God for that!) and my wife isn’t a doctor (Слава Богу for that too!) – and this remains true for every single individual who supported the Sofa message right from the get go.

Very well-educated and well-read men (and some women) are now coping with the fact that what they perceive as “the lesser” were entirely correct and they were wrong. Some are coping with it relatively honorably (by acknowledging they were wrong) while others maintain to this day that the rest of us simply got lucky. The latter category is worthy of scorn for many years to come, not only because they commit the sin of assuming shit but also because such hubris should be socially discouraged wherever possible.

We could’ve discussed luck if we had gotten one or two disparate things right while being just as wrong (or even more wrong) than the booksmart people. But that’s just not the case.

On everything – from survival rate, to the immorality, illegality and illiberalism of so-called NPIs, to the viability of the myocarditis-inducing experimental gene therapy clotshot… on everything we got things right, or at the very least closer to the truth than they did. That’s not a coincidence nor is it luck. It’s something else. Something that is now missing from those who profess to be thought leaders: street smarts.

Street smarts breed adaptable people

In the past, until the 1950s or even later, both the elite and the plebs had street smarts. In the past, the elites would speak 4-5 languages as a matter of routine, travel more or less with the plebs, and reality compelled them to learn how the world actually works once they step foot outside the reading room.

Now, however, most of these people live completely separate lives from the rest of us. In a very physical and concrete way. And that is to their detriment too.

Erika Fatland is the only writer that I’m aware of in contemporaneity that is both in the traditional elite chambers and still behaves like an elite used to. She makes good money off of investors and institutions for doing more or less what I do: travel the world by train with the plebs, speaking with the plebs rather than at them, and then report about it. Turns out the plebs are still willing to listen/read even a snob/elitist opinion as long as it comes from a place of authenticity (i.e. you’ve actually been there and know your stuff) – which is a nicer way of saying… having street smarts.

Us, the plebs, got the pandemic project right not necessarily because we were smarter (though in some cases that was the case too), nor because we were lucky. We got it right because we had a higher dose of a different type of smart.

Having street smarts is not just physical fighting skills and ability to manage difficult situations in an urban setting. Street smarts is also the ability to blend in with many different types of people.

By necessity or by choice, us plebs with street smarts didn’t stay in an physical or virtual silo during the pandemic project. We kept on talking to people who virulently disagree with us but also with people who probably agree with us a bit too much.

Street smarts does mean being able to assess risk. So for those with street smarts, it simply came natural not to freak out too much about the Wuhan Cough. It made sense not to automatically trust the “official sources” – precisely because down here, at the street level, we’d seen this movie before. We knew – not by luck, but by previous trial and error – that the official sources will lie if they’re required to do so or if they panic and get stupid in public.

Unlike the so-called “educated” we didn’t display the memory of a paramecium. So by September 2020, nearly 100% of the street smarts people had figured out most of the pandemic project. Face it: It wasn’t even hard. When you tell plebs that the Wuhan Flu spreads dangerously at the Church but not in crowded shopping malls, it doesn’t take a genius to figure out that something’s rotten.

The shock and horror of the book smarts people when they learned that the plebs will go around the mandatory vaccination with impunity (see Germany, France, Greece and Bulgaria, Italy, and so on) also showed just how out of touch these people are. I could go on more but you get the point.

Ideally, one would seek a balance between street smarts and book smarts. But, when such thing is not possible, then more street smarts is preferable for most people, since most of what constitutes street smarts used to be called common sense which, yeah, ain’t that common anymore.

Get the nerds back in the closet

So if there’s anything we can learn from the pandemic project in terms of reference points, it’s this: While books are good, touching grass is far better. And not being a terminally online NPC is highly helpful.

Ultimately, the pandemic project was a long, costly and painful experiment of a society ruled by nerds manipulated by pseudo-elites who wanted money and power (not necessarily in this order).

Face it: Most doctors are either corrupt bribery-receiving psychopaths or they are nerds. Neither category is fit to run society. Yet that’s exactly what the pandemic project attempted to do: to run society as if it’s a gigantic hospital ward with the sole purpose of preventing one disease.

Such dogmatic unidirectional focus and utter disregard for collateral damage (i.e. trade-offs) can be found in many people but it is overwhelmingly concentrated in just two categories: psychopaths and nerds.

And most of the people directly tormenting us for the last three years were nerds, not psychopaths. And without them, acting as enforcers, the pandemic project wouldn’t have been possible.

Think about it. Who tended to be the most Stakhanovite about the pandemic project? Corporate middle managers (nerds), hyperspecialized previously obscure Twitter accounts (nerds), terminally online antisocial IT folks (nerds) and the writers at “serious” newspapers (most of them nerds). Everyone else not in these categories dropped the pandemic project from their mind by September 2020.

Sure, we can quibble about exceptions and all that, but, by and large, the nerds were very good enforcers of the pandemic project without whom the project would’ve failed even earlier.

Some people still think this is something new. But it’s not. In 2009, Mexico went into lockdown for a flu. But in 2009, it was still acceptable to respond to those proposing such crap with the perfectly sensible reply of: “Shut up, nerd! Touch grass!”

I cannot stress enough just how big of a civilizational mistake it was to let the nerds out of the closet. It’s bad for society and it’s bad for nerds themselves too.

Can this geenie be put back in the bottle? I don’t know. But I do know that it’s worth a shot. Start by not taking nerds seriously and by avoiding as many activities associated with nerds as possible. It’s definitely a good start. Also, discourage your children from nerdy activities. Get him/her to play football/volleyball/whatever outside.

The takeaway is to continue to do what we, the street smarts people, got correctly right from the get go: Touch grass!

That’s it.

Lucian Vâlsan on Youtube
Lucian Vâlsan
Not particularly nice. Mostly libertarian-conservative. Founder of the Freedom Alternative Network.