Lockdowners and “The Desire to Dominate”

by | Nov 8, 2020 | Headline News | 15 comments

Do you LOVE America?


    This article was originally published by Joakim Book at the Mises Institute. 

    In many years of lecturing at Mises University, Judge Napolitano has given the same—terrifying—ending to his introductory speech. Not until the horrors of this year did it dawn on me that perhaps his point has its basis in reality.

    The dear judge often mentions, almost like a joke, the libido dominandi—the desire to dominate, or the will to power, harking back to Augustine of Hippo’s centuries-old writing. We find similar notions in Friedrich Hayek’s “Why the Worst Get on Top” chapter in The Road to Serfdom and most certainly in the eerily relevant writing of Robert Higgs.

    The memorable ending in Napolitano’s lecture is:

    I expect that I will die, faithful to my first principles…in my bed, surrounded by people that love me. Some of you may die, faithful to first principles, in a government prison. And some of you may die, faithful to first principles, in a government town square to the sound of a government trumpet blaring.

    The few times I’ve been fortunate enough to hear him speak those words live, they always struck me as a little exaggerated. Even though the room fell dead quiet, I felt sick to my stomach and had goosebumps all over my skin, it couldn’t possibly get that bad, could it?

    The madness of 2020 has had me reconsider.

    The Control of Others’ Lives

    Wanting to rule over others is, to some extent, innate. Perhaps it follows from our misplaced sense of superiority (e.g., the Lake Wobegon effect) or from a hubristic pretense of knowledge, or perhaps from an inability to see the full range of value that others provide: know better how things should be done; if only were in charge, the world would be better.

    What’s clear is that in anno 2020, the ever-present lust for domination experienced a perfect storm—a storm that let them unleash their controls to lecture us and commandeer us hither and thither, to centrally plan a health campaign, and to direct anyone and everyone as to what they were allowed to do. What’s so terrifying about this isn’t that the desire to rule others exists—it always did—but that the forces that usually keep it at bay somehow just gave up.

    In the early days of the pandemic, those of us who make our living crafting words were fighting over libertarianism: “There are no libertarians in a pandemic,” they said. Perhaps, we politely responded, like everyone else a bit afraid of what we then didn’t know. But surely, there are no statists coming out of one either: “beneficial” regulations that disrupted production and distribution of stuff suddenly high in demand were lifted, centralized control botched things left and right. With obvious failure of this magnitude, we couldn’t possibly want government commanding us around and regulating our affairs?

    In hindsight, that dispute seems quaint—and we forgot the core of it. Now, people from Paul Krugman to Tyler Cowen seems to think that libertarians rule the world and that everything that has gone wrong is libertarians’ fault. In the race to centrally plan everything from production decisions to who gets to leave their house wearing what, every other concern—except, naturally, Black Lives Matter—was thrown overboard.

    Libertarianism isn’t an ideology about what’s the better outcome, however defined. It’s not about how “we” fix a medical problem, or how best to mitigate disasters like pandemics. It’s not even about how to distribute the breathtaking surplus that our highly productive economies create. It’s about who gets to make decisions about what. It’s not about how we best minimize pandemic threats, not how we best optimize some imagined private or social welfare function, not how we best ensure long and healthy lives.

    Whoever owns something decides. If you—the owner and manager of your body—want to put harmful drugs in it, be my guest. That’s none of my business. If you wish to carry crystals that protect against evil, or against pink elephants lurking in the shadows, knock yourself out. If you wish to dress up in phony gear that staves off invisible microbes, have fun.

    But you do not have the right to mandate that others follow suit. You do not, like Cowen recently did, have the high ground to say “actually, [freedom] just doesn’t seem worth it.” He, as David Henderson chastised him for it, “seems to be substituting his own values for those of others”—the cardinal sin for anyone who pays lip service to liberty.

    And he wasn’t the only one. Succumbing to the temptation of commandeering others about, “libertarians” on both sides of the Atlantic started invoking externalities and public goods to justify one patently unjust and invasive policy after another. Sam Bowman, a self-described neoliberal and formerly of the Adam Smith Institute, is, like Cowen, just the most vocal of the casualties.

    But public health is not a public good, as Michel Accad described recently in response to the Great Barrington Declaration. Nor is it of anyone else’s concern:

    An individual’s life and health are particular goods, not common goods. It is an obvious metaphysical truth that my health and my life can only be mine and are not shared in common with anyone, and certainly not with the political community at large. At its heart, “public health” is an oxymoron, since “the public,” as an abstraction, has no health to speak of. Only individuals are healthy or not.

    Lockdowns as pandemic-fighting policy are this perfect domineering strategy: if the infection rates go down, success; you win and can invoke the same policy of control next time there’s some alleged disaster looming. If the infection rates remain the same, or go up, you clamp down harder—success again. What would the world have to look like for you to concede? What would have to happen for you to say “Actually, stripping away our population’s freedoms and dignities don’t seem to help us in reducing the infections”? There is no circumstance under which lockdowners accept that their pandemic policy does not work, or more importantly, runs against liberty or basic human dignity.

    Krugman and True Liberalism

    Interestingly enough, Krugman almost got it right. Lambasting libertarians for everything that’s wrong in pandemic America—yes, it’s exactly as nutty as it sounds—he writes:

    Many things should be matters of individual choice. The government has no business dictating your cultural tastes, your faith or what you decide to do with other consenting adults.

    We used to think that liberals wanted to liberate the people from government constraints, a fundamental hands-off approach. American liberals long since forgot this insight: it’s no longer about leaving people alone, it’s about correcting their thought crimes before they manifest themselves in the world. Still, the liberals of today pay lip service to this notion before they pivot 180 degrees—and start listing activities that it is now the government’s business to decide: what you wear in public; where you go; what you think; what you trade, with whom, and where; ensuring that you don’t unknowingly spread germs around.

    The pandemic brought out the worst in people and revealed clearly what was always simmering under the surface: an innate desire to dominate others. To put them in their place, to shove nonsensical ideas down their throats, to dress them up in paltry gear, to ridicule and attack those who deviate from the One True Government Faith. The pandemic showed who truly supported and respected the values that others may hold—and who would rather give in to the temptation of power, who would override the faulty actions among our inferior plebs.

    “Freedom lies in the human heart,” said Judge Napolitano, “but it must do more than just lie there.” Remember that when you are stripped of liberties in the name of everyone else’s well-being.


    It Took 22 Years to Get to This Point

    Gold has been the right asset with which to save your funds in this millennium that began 23 years ago.

    Free Exclusive Report
    The inevitable Breakout – The two w’s

      Related Articles


      Join the conversation!

      It’s 100% free and your personal information will never be sold or shared online.


      1. Of course the most mentally incompetent people demand to dominate others. I suspect that since people do not respect them since they are mentally incompetent, they harbor this hidden desire to impose their will on others in order to feed their undeserving, narcisstic, psychopathic, mentally incompetent, egos. It is always a grave mistake to cave to the will of those who wish to violate people’s constitutional rights, and the lock down potentially violated every single one of them.

        Andrea Iravani

      2. America’s probability for succeeding is tragically zero. A country that has corruption and predation as a business model is destined to fail. Attempts to try to get people to accept that they have no rights will not succeed, and even if for some strange reason that people would accept that, for which I will not be among them, it will still fail, because it is still an unprofitable or unviable business model. This strategy to attempt to get people to accept that they do not have rights is led by corrupt, incompetent, degenerates incapable of surviving without violating the rights and property of others, and if they were capable of surviving without violating people’s rights and property, they would be on the side of demanding that people’s constitutional rights be upheld, because they would have no reason to want to violate people’s constitutional rights, and they would want their constitutional rights respected as well as their childrens’, if their children were competent. Silicon Valley, the financial sector, large segements of the media and alternative media, the corporate sector, education sector, and government sector are into a really sick and freaked out creepy life style that the majority of people find so morally repugnant that it just won’t catch on. It also endangers people’s lives and property, and places the most vulnerable and defenseless people at the highest risk of predatory, psychopathic abuse. They say that 50% of all internet traffic will be from appliances. Why do appliances need to use the internet? What purpose does this serve the appliance owner? Is the appliance owner now supposed to exist for the benefit of the appliances that they own and not the other way around? Are refrigerators sitting around attacking political opponents as bots, or hacking posts?  Or who knows what they might be up to. With the psychos in Silicon Valley and the government, little would surprise me. They speak about having a cyber version of relatives created with their DNA. This is illogical, because people are not only who they are as a result of their DNA, but as a result of their experiences and environments as well. A computer will not be capable of being able to determine how DNA will react to a situation because the computer would be programming that reaction and that DNA would not be acting freely and on its own volition. DNA alone cannot in any way predict whata person will say or do from one minute to the next. DNA can predict the probability that an individual will develop cetain personlity traits to a degree, but it is still a nature verses nurture combination that determines various aspects of a person’s personality. These are quackery tactics of fraud that they are using. There is no way to look at someone’s DNA and determine through visual examination of DNA how someone might advise someone on how to cope with or handle a certain dilemma. For example, you cannot look at someone’s DNA and say if this person will advise someone to buy a Mitsubishi or a Honda. It is more likely that some sick freak or thief would be pretending to be someone’s relative by using their image and voice. The shit that they come up with is grotesque. I would not do this to my deceased relatives, because I honor them, who they were, and respect their privacy, and could not imagine doing something so sick to their memory and reduce their lives to some grotesque, Orwellian, dystopian, phantasmagoria, of a creeped out, freaked out Silicon Valley dweeb. This shows that they are truly sub human, since they do not even understand what it means to be human, and think that people can be replaced by computer images by those that loved them. They obviously are also incapable of love, in their sub human existences, because that is certainly is not love for a person! 

        Andrea Iravani

        • Maybe the Silicon Psychos are having appliances click on ads, and then fraudulently charging corporations for ad ckicks. Why else would they do this? Either that, or for mining crypto-currencies, which they would be using our electricity for doing, which is theft.

          Andrea Iravani

        • Most people aren‘t able to look that far down the rabbit hole due to disbelief, denial and/or a lack of intelligence.

      3. An interesting thought dove-tailing with the above,

        “WHEN you meet your Maker, standing at the Bar of Eternal Judgement, perhaps the last – very LAST – question that serves to decide your Fate is this: In your Life did you succumb to the Love of POWER…or did you subscribe to the Power of LOVE?”

        Let the whole World be Judged on that single question and I think that all the Wheat will have been separated – fully – from the Chaff.

      4. Yeah, they desired to dominate in the lock down for three reasons.:

        1.) to sut down the narrative that they were once again guilty of financial fraud with the collapse of the repo market followed by the collapse of the oil market.

        2.) To use a typically non-lethal virus as a fall guy for their financial fraud schemes.

        3.) To steal assets from people at rock bottom fire sale prices that had fallen victim to their scam.

        So they felt compelled to dominate because they would have ended up bankrupt and in prison if they didn’t, and it should have been them that were locked in prisons for fraud, and not the rest of the country and world over a double fraud scheme of financial fraud and scientific fraud. The fact that it was permited and not prosecuted immediately is why America is destined to fail. I miss 1987, when failing financial instutions were permitted to fail!

        Andrea Iravani

      5. Wonder whatever happened to the concept of live and let live?I don’t for a second believe this is a new problem.These authoritarians have always wanted to have us living with their boots upon our necks.This so called “killer” phony 19 was just the perfect excuse for the tyrants to exercise their control over us.Absolutely none of what has occurred during this plandemic has been for our “health” or “benefit”.The ultimate goal of these tyrants is to strip us of any shred of dignity we still have left.They want to control EVERY single aspect of our lives.Human beings cannot live this way and the upswing in depression/suicides are a very somber reminder of that fact.Truly,who the hell do these people think they are? Exactly when were these tyrants given the right to tell us where we could go,who we could congregate with,when we could go outside,who we could talk to,whether we could visit our families,and so on and so forth?As long as you are not hurting anyone else -it is nobody’s damn business where you go,who you see,what you do,or,who you do it with! I often think about how pathetic the lives of these tyrants must be if they spend all their time trying to control all of lives? We live(well,we used to anyway)in a supposedly free country where we as human beings had some basic human rights-what the hell happened to that?You really gotta ask yourself-when the fuck did the United States of America become the United States of Amerika ?

      6. The lock down was a gas-loghting psy-op. Gas loghting techniques used for the purpose of a financial scheme, and domination for the purpose of theft, as in a hostage crisis or false arrest, which it was. These are Machevellians, Gas-lighters, and psychopaths. They pose extreme dangers to society and are in fact guilty of crimes against humanity. I have no sympathy for them what so ever. They are totally evil and do not deserve to be forvgiven.

        Some gas-lighters even claim tbat the mask wearing is an initiation, an initiation into being a fool that they can count on because they can’t pull it off if people aren’t fooled by it!

        Andrea Iravani

      7. The lock down was a gas-lighting psy-op. Gas-lighting techniques used for the purpose of a financial scheme, and domination for the purpose of theft, as in a hostage crisis or false arrest, which it was. These are Machevellians, Gas-lighters, and psychopaths. They pose extreme dangers to society and are in fact guilty of crimes against humanity. I have no sympathy for them what so ever. They are totally evil and do not deserve to be forvgiven.

        Some gas-lighters even claim tbat the mask wearing is an initiation, an initiation into being a fool that they can count on because they can’t pull it off if people aren’t fooled by it! 

        Andrea Iravani

      8. I can tell you one thing for sure that there will be know person on earth will make me wear a mask or keep me locked down, especially not a shit eating,shit spitting demoncrap .com try.
        The next four years should be very entertaining with little joe “idiot” biden and camela “toes” harris. I have already shutdown my tv. I will still do the things that I have been doing. Anyone .coms to my door better know me personally. I personally guarantee it. Elbulleheal

        • Uhhhh, the election is still going on. Stop watching phony news crap, Biden hasn’t won shit! If you want true reporting on the ongoing election watch “newsmax”. You make yourself sound like a brainwashed sheep spouting it is over and Biden won. When the smoke clears Trump will remain president.

      9. Joe Biden has announced that he intends to implement a national mask mandate by calling governors and asking them to implement one, ( 30 states currently have mask mandates.) and that if governors refuse, Biden will contact mayors and request that they implement mask mandates.

        So, yeah, wear a mask, and if you are driving, wear a blindfold, because car accidents can be caused from the glare of the sun, even with sun glasses.

        Andrea Iravani

        • @Andrea-I am totally against mask mandates,but, would make an exception for the “president s/elect”.If our election “winner”? wore a full face mask-our surroundings would immediately improve dramatically.Not having to look at his face would be glorious.Same goes for his partner in crime Harris also.?

      10. My feeling on election fraud is two-fold, first – Politicians have been cheating and lying in Everything that they have done, so to have the election being the sole thing that they do not cheat and lie about, particularly when the stakes for them are at the highest point, would be clear signs of a delusional individual, or at least a fool with clouded judgement, and secondly – I have no stake in this election since both candidates have violated and have committed to violatimg my constitutional rights, in addition to violating the rights of others around the world through wars and sanctions based on outright lies. It is of no benefit for me to try to claim that the results of the election were in violation of democracy if that democracy has democratically and illegally decided to violate my constitutional rights, and if that democracy has also democratically decided to wage war and sanctions on others based on lies, it can then be equated with a democratically decided gang rape, of which I happen to be one of the many victims, and choosing one group of gang rapists over another group of gang rapists is something that would not be in my best interests.

        Andrea Iravani

      11. Thank you for this article. I too have been saying this all along. “Freedom lies in the human heart,” said Judge Napolitano, “but it must do more than just lie there.” Also,
        The memorable ending in Napolitano’s lecture is:
        “I expect that I will die, faithful to my first principles…in my bed, surrounded by people that love me. Some of you may die, faithful to first principles, in a government prison. And some of you may die, faithful to first principles, in a government town square to the sound of a government trumpet blaring.”. Read this a few times to really understand what is being said. This is a real eye open ing statement.

      Commenting Policy:

      Some comments on this web site are automatically moderated through our Spam protection systems. Please be patient if your comment isn’t immediately available. We’re not trying to censor you, the system just wants to make sure you’re not a robot posting random spam.

      This website thrives because of its community. While we support lively debates and understand that people get excited, frustrated or angry at times, we ask that the conversation remain civil. Racism, to include any religious affiliation, will not be tolerated on this site, including the disparagement of people in the comments section.