Ever have to deal with a naughty kid?
Adult: Toby! I told you to put those toys away.
Kid: I am putting them away.
Adult: No you’re not, you’re playing with that truck. Put them away now.
Kid: Okay, okay. (Continues to play)
Adult: Toby, I’m going to stand right here and watch you put those toys away.
(Kid begins picking up the smallest toys and putting them away at a glacial pace, waiting for the adult to turn his back.)
Adult: Ten. Nine. Eight. (Toby will finish right on zero. Occasionally slightly after to test the boundary.)
This power play increases the cost of enforcement.
The more resistance, the more resources have to be put into compelling people to follow the rules.
Right now there’s yet another lockdown and we’re not allowed to go to the beach. First we feigned ignorance and got shoed away. We gave some cheek to the enforcers. Not enough to get arrested; just enough to annoy them and make them sick of telling people off for swimming at the beach. Enough that they’ll ask to be reassigned or reconsider their line of work. Demoralize them. Make it clear that, while they didn’t make the rules, they’re going to feel our ire for enforcing them.
Now we’ve moved on to the boundary-testing stage: we went to the beach at the crack of dawn to see if there were any enforcers. There were not. We went for a clandestine swim and both died of Covid six minutes later.
First it was 5:30 a.m. Next it will be 6:00 a.m. Keep pushing, pushing; make their lives difficult. Neither the National Police nor the local barangay officials want to be patrolling the beach at all hours. Especially the latter as the barangay captain must soon seek reelection.
Don’t aim at nobly getting arrested or fined. Well, do that if you want, but make sure that no matter how well behaved you normally are, you are constantly pushing, pushing against the fash, making their lives miserable and discouraging them.
Remember, humans get a power trip from issuing outrageous edicts. Incessant resistance and cheekiness on the part of the public has the opposite effect – it makes wielding power tiresome.
Don’t discount minor acts of rebellion so long as they are ubiquitous.
Have you ever tried to get to sleep with a mosquito in your room?
Same with facemasks. I personally won’t object when they are required in crowded, public indoor places because at least that is in good faith whether it works or not. However, if I’m being told to wear them outdoors or in a place that’s not crowded at all, I’m going to push back.
First, let it slip under your nose. Then wear it on your chin. Then let it hang from your ear. Then keep it in your pocket in case an enforcer confronts you. One step at a time.
Watch others and keep keep pushing just one move ahead of the status quo, i.e. if everyone’s already at the nose stage then you go to the chin. Test the boundaries. Make the enforcers squirm with irritation. Not just now and then but all day, every day.
In short, wherever you are being unreasonably restricted or bossed around, always be looking for weak points in the wall of authority.
Think like a naughty boy.
The herd is more important than the enforcers because the herd is more numerous. If everyone agreed to willfully ignore a stupid rule right now, that would be game over. As they are not doing that in most places, instead lead them astray like a Judas goat, little steps at a time. Show them that you can get away with not wearing your mask properly. Most people are followers so give them someone to follow.
If a member of the herd should turn enforcer (a Karen), stick with the naughty boy act. Pretend not to understand, ask for clarification, drag it out, act nonchalant so that she gets no power rush from bossing a stranger even if you end up putting your mask back on (and taking it off again a few minutes later).
Read the room. If everyone’s ganging up on you, resistance is useless. If bystanders are uninvolved and curious, charge ahead.
You can try this approach with Woke edicts, too. Pretend to forget proper terminology or feign ignorance. Ask constant, stupid (but innocent) questions in DIE training. Make the whole thing much less enjoyable for the zealots who imagined it going down quite differently.
To be clear, I am not discouraging you from direct and blatant resistance. You know your situation better than I do. Personally I’m not too keen on doing time in a Philippine jail, nor in being deported given there’s no other country I can easily get to.
This article is more for goody-two-shoes types who always listened to the teacher and do their tax on time.
For us, it is our moral obligation to kick against the pricks. It can be minor, but it must be constant.
Remove pleasure from power to discourage its overuse.