A few days ago, Dilbert creator, and more lately contrarian commentator, Scott Adams admitted “the anti-vaxxers won”.
If you’re not that familiar with Adams, he sabotaged his highly successful career as a cartoonist and public speaker by predicting that Donald Trump would win the 2016 election.
He didn’t even say he was a Trump fan (in fact, his political views are largely Left-wing) but the prediction itself, and the idea that Americans might not be absolute monsters for voting Trump, was enough to lose him most of his living.
He then became popular in a completely different market, with his relatively red-pilled takes on the culture war. When it came to Covid, however, he strongly and repeatedly backed the vaccine, thus alienating much of his new, vaccine sceptic following.
However, in another twist, Adams has now admitted, unequivocally, though not without a touch of snark, that the ”anti-vaxxers”, as he calls them, have won.
The thrust of his argument (against his prior self) is that those who refused the vaccine now have natural immunity, and don’t have to worry about an mRNA time bomb five years down the line.
And that’s perfectly true.
What’s not true is his statement that the choice to refuse the vaccine was simply a “coin flip”.
Adams seems to be speaking as if we are still in a normal world, making difficult decisions where the evidence on both sides is finely balanced, rather than the new paradigm where everything is weaponised by a ruling elite, to the point that even something as seemingly objective as science becomes the sinister, entirely political concept of ‘the Science’.
In other words, we’re not in Kansas anymore, but Adams is acting like we are.
Which is odd, because in many other ways Adams is totally ‘awake’. Indeed, he spends the beginning of his stream on the vaccine talking about how he was totally “brainwashed” about the evils of President Nixon. Which is not one you hear very often. In fact, Adams might be one of the first ‘Nixon Truthers’, except for Tucker Carlson, from whom he gained his new knowledge, and Roger Stone, who famously has a tattoo of Nixon on his back.
Anyway, the point is that Adams is highly perceptive on some issues, but totally fell for the mainstream narrative on the vaccine.
He claims vaccine sceptics bested him by simply applying a basic ‘heuristic’. Namely: don’t trust the government or big companies.
That isn’t wholly accurate, since vaccine sceptic views range from the most advanced arguments of professional virologists, to the humble commoner who just doesn’t trust this dodgy new medicine. (You have probably seen some of the bell curve memes regarding vaccines and IQ. If not, I include one below for your consideration).
Notwithstanding Adams’ oversimplification of why people refused the vaccine, he admits that this suspicion of authority is a totally sound approach. After all, when has not trusting the government ever really been wrong?
What is strange is that Adams’ research led him to the conclusion that he should take the jab. He is a highly intelligent person who has proved himself very capable of thinking independently. Normally those are the people questioning just about everything surrounding the Covid hysteria.
Perhaps Adams was following his own ‘heuristic’ of contrarianism, leading him to rail against his new-found red-pilled audience, just as it initially prompted him to highlight the positives of Trump.
More likely he really did just believe he was making a rational, well-researched choice. But, unlike Sam Harris and so many others, he is willing to admit he got it wrong.
For me it’s all much more simple: I never once considered taking the vaccine.
Perhaps I am one of Adams’s anti-vaxxer heuristic gang. Perhaps, despite once scoring a solid 137 on a Mensa test, I am just the Hammerheaded low IQ chap from the meme who fears the 5G magnet.
Either way, I gave it about as much thought as the “killer bees” scandal. I admit I was a bit worried about Y2K, but you don’t fool me twice.
Which is relevant, actually, because what Adams appeared to miss out of his heuristic was that it’s not just Big Government and Big Pharma we doubt, but the mainstream media. And all three working in concert (the very red-pilled would say in ‘lockstep’) should raise alarm bells in even the most placid normie.
Somehow, though, that clearly did not occur for most people, as the normies all lined up for their arm poison, while I stood aloof and totally bemused.
The whole thing was entirely alien to me. It was just something normies were chatting about among themselves, like whether to choose go-karting or miniature golf for their work event – I’m not going to either, so I don’t need to listen.
Although I had thoughts like “Will I be banned from society?” and “Which of my family members would put me in a Covid camp?” I never considered actually taking a medicine that you only seemed to need if you watched too much TV. I don’t buy the gizmos on late night shopping channels either.
Scott Adams, on the other hand, despite his past good work, doesn’t seem to have fully digested quite how off his picture of the world really is. Maybe he just needs to take a few more red pills.
And, pace Adams, it was not a coin flip. I simply never picked up the coin.
Nick Dixon is Deputy Editor of the Daily Sceptic. You can follow him on Twitter and Substack.
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