The scope of what we’re permitted to do keeps shrinking. From Paul Rosenberg at freemansperspective.com:
The past year has been a mass confusion of fear, misinformation, cover-ups, tyranny, crazed true-believers and more. Making sense of it has been difficult, and even those of us who try to do so professionally have come up short. But this morning the word we’ve needed rolled through my mind as I was waking up. And that word is scope. Please bear with me as I explain.
There’s a paraphrase of Aristotle that I love; it’s his definition of happiness:
The exercise of vital powers, along lines of excellence, in a life affording them scope.
There is a tremendous amount that can be unpacked from that short passage, and I suggest that you spend some time with it, but it’s the last phrase that’s so crucial to us now: a life affording scope. That’s what has been stolen from us over the past year, and it’s far more important than most of us have understood.
To limit the scope of human action… the scope of human will… is to limit our ultimate assets, which are intelligence, self-reflection and creativity. Without them, we sink back to an animal existence, because those are precisely the things which we have and which animals lack.
There is no greater crime than the mass restriction of scope. To oppress talent is to impoverish billions of humans yet unborn.