Moshe-Mordechai van Zuiden
Psychology, Medicine, Science, Politics, Oppression, Integrity, Philosophy, Jews -- For those who like their news and truths frank and sharp

Difficult corona questions, easy short answers

The number of questions is endless. Some of them I answered here.
Stay informed, stay happy.

Why would a young person be so very careful not to get infected?

1. Getting well is almost sure but after a sickbed of 6 weeks in isolation!
2. You don’t want to be a link in a transmission line that kills people.
3. It’s hard to let others decide for you but these are top-specialists.
4. Israel is relatively doing well — don’t ruin it.

If most people are going to get this, what’s the use of running from it?

70-80% will get infected if we do nothing. But these are the benefits of postponing the infection for as many people and for as long as possible:

Maybe you or someone who otherwise would die from it would then:
1. Not get it because the epidemic died down already, never got to you.
2. Not get it because the epidemic would have been contained.
3. Not get so sick because a milder form has replaced the earlier virus.
4. Get well safer because doctors found how to prevent deterioration.
5. Get well sooner because doctors already found medication.
6. Could get healthcare. If the system collapses, we’re all in danger.
7. Not get it because there already would be a preventative vaccine.

Isn’t this not just like the flu that also kills but upsets no-one?

1. This corona is 29 (UK) – 75 (Italy) times more deadly than the flu!
2. The flu is extremely contagious while this corona can be stopped.
3. So, if you stop it, it kills less; if you don’t, it kills dozens of times more!

Most people in preventive home seclusion turn out not infected and most infected feel hardly sick, so why being so strict?

1. Each infected can infect many others, who can infect many others.
2. If not everyone is strict, we will never contain this epidemic.
3. Many infected will not feel ill at all but can still infect others.

One tells us don’t panic and take it seriously. Isn’t that contradictory?

1. Panicking is uncalled for. Remember that 80-90-99% will recover.
2. If we don’t stop the spreading, 1% could mean 60,000 dead Israelis.

I see so many not taking it seriously. Why should I be a sucker?

1. Report them to the police. This is worse than robbers or terrorists.
2. It’s life and death on a big scale. We don’t toy with death.

But other countries like the US are much more lenient, no?

1. Yes, but they’ve not started testing so they don’t know how bad it is.
2. They totally lost control and so need even stricter measures than us.
3. The US is two weeks behind Italy. You don’t want to be in their place.

There are so many conflicting opinions. Which to believe?

1. Check the Ministry of Health website in English. Expect mistake there. When still in doubt, call them (or in Israel, 101, Magayn Daveed Adom).
2. Do as they tell you. Even if you think it’s too heavy-handed.
3. Be angry all you want but obey them. You’re too subjective to decide.
4. Others’ lives are at stake. Be generous as you like others to be to you.
5. Later, you want to talk about this crisis with pride, not shame.
6. Better be safe than sorry.

I called them but they didn’t take it seriously that I cough and have a fever. Who’s not taking this seriously now?

1. The experience in Israel is: without known contacts, there’s no danger.
2. As soon as they find community spread, this rule will change.
3. This reserves energy and time for the real cases and dangers.
4. They are very strict but only when indicated by experience.

If it’s better to be safe than sorry, shouldn’t we all wear facemasks?

1. No, because they don’t really stop us from getting this virus.
2. They give a baseless sense of security and so endanger us!
3. To the contrary. Taking off a mask after use can easily infect us.
4. Professional masks are recommended only when caring for patients.
5. Facemasks on infected people may help stop them to infect others.
6. Expensive non-disposable masks kill the virus but lack full safety since air can leak between mask and skin (beard!) and eyes are not protected.

I refuse to panic. Be honest and admit that this is not so bad.

1. Try this: Don’t panic and admit that this might kill tens of millions.
2. It’s easy not to panic since we can do something. But millions will die.
3. The more people deny the seriousness, the more serious it will get.

But China has 1.3 billion people and the epidemic there has ended with less than 3200 deaths. That is 0.00024% of the population!

1. China said: In hotspots, all stay home till it’s over. Violators are shot.
2. The West can’t just shoot off violators of a lock-down. Can’t be done.

But I read that China used traditional Chinese medicine to cure this.

1. You are under no obligation to believe everything you read.
2. With SARS and new scary flues they only used Western medicine.
3. Why believe that this time, they succeeded with a different approach?

In the Netherlands, they started vaccination against corona with BCG.

1. Not. BCG activates the immune system. This isn’t corona vaccination.
2. Having enough sleep also supports one’s immunity.

As a pious person, should I not just trust in G^d?

1. Judaism forbids us to count on a miracle instead of making an effort.
2. Jewish Faith is: Do all you can and only after that, give it over to G^d.

This costs a fortune. But if the epidemic stops, wasn’t that a waste?

1. That’s what it costs to stop it.
2. If you don’t stop it now, it will end up costing much more.

But I read: “427 Israelis with coronavirus, cannot leave homes unless ‘necessary’.” Is that not very very dangerous?

1. Yes. Idiots erroneously glued two unrelated headlines together:
2. There are 427 Israelis infected with coronavirus; and:
3. Israelis can no longer leave home unless for greatly urgent matters.
4. Patients and those under home arrest in no case are allowed outside.

What is this going to do to the economy, unemployment, and poverty?

1. For Israel, it’s just a big bill. Israel will ‘soon’ return to normal.
2. In the US, this will lead to a Recession and then a Depression.
3. The poorest countries will have the most deaths and deflation.
4. We’ve seen financial world crises before that did not hurt Israel.

Is it just me finding life like this much less fun and very challenging?

1. This may be tough but we can choose to make it fun and memorable.
2. Jews are world record holders in survival. Show what we’re made of!
3. Living well is the best revenge. Decide to be happy no matter what.

And if I think that this is just too much to ask of us?

1. Scream — but scream in a pillow not to bother/abuse others.
2. The better we home-isolate, the sooner it will be over.

There are so many conspiracy theories about this. How can we know that none of them are true?

1. Any paranoid idea could be true. But, is maliciousness here likely?
2. Likely, China studied a natural bat virus that escaped the lab.
3. Until China turns democratic, it’ll be unlikely we’ll ever know for sure.
4. Russia is spreading fake news about this to destabilize democracies.
5. Surely, haters of each group will circulate blame and hatred for them.
6. There is word that a milder strain of the virus has emerged in China.
7. There is word that a much more vicious strain is now roaming Italy.

What will we need to deal with after the epidemic?

1. To mourn loved ones who died and the millions we didn’t know.
2. Many couples will need relationship therapy or divorce.
3. There will be a global economic crisis with more starvation than ever.
4. New cynicism will hinder saving humanity from out-of-whack nature.
5. The dictatorial super-powers will have grown much more powerful.
6. If you wondered what life is for, now you’ll find a lot of purpose.

About the Author
MM is a prolific and creative writer and thinker, previously a daily blog contributor to the TOI. He often makes his readers laugh, mad, or assume he's nuts—close to perfect blogging. He's proud that his analytical short comments are removed both from left-wing and right-wing news sites. None of his content is generated by the new bore on the block, AI. * As a frontier thinker, he sees things many don't yet. He's half a prophet. Half. Let's not exaggerate. Or not at all because he doesn't claim G^d talks to him. He gives him good ideas—that's all. MM doesn't believe that people observe and think in a vacuum. He, therefore, wanted a broad bio that readers interested can track a bit what (lack of) backgrounds, experiences, and educations contribute to his visions. * This year, he will prioritize getting his unpublished books published rather than just blog posts. Next year, he hopes to focus on activism against human extinction. To find less-recent posts on a subject XXX among his over 2000 archived ones, go to the right-top corner of a Times of Israel page, click on the search icon and search "zuiden, XXX". One can find a second, wilder blog, to which one may subscribe too, here: or by clicking on the globe icon next to his picture on top. * Like most of his readers, he believes in being friendly, respectful, and loyal. However, if you think those are his absolute top priorities, you might end up disappointed. His first loyalty is to the truth. He will try to stay within the limits of democratic and Jewish law, but he won't lie to support opinions or people when don't deserve that. (Yet, we all make honest mistakes, which is just fine and does not justify losing support.) He admits that he sometimes exaggerates to make a point, which could have him come across as nasty, while in actuality, he's quite a lovely person to interact with. He holds - how Dutch - that a strong opinion doesn't imply intolerance of other views. * Sometimes he's misunderstood because his wide and diverse field of vision seldomly fits any specialist's box. But that's exactly what some love about him. He has written a lot about Psychology (including Sexuality and Abuse), Medicine (including physical immortality), Science (including basic statistics), Politics (Israel, the US, and the Netherlands, Activism - more than leftwing or rightwing, he hopes to highlight reality), Oppression and Liberation (intersectionally, for young people, the elderly, non-Whites, women, workers, Jews, LGBTQIA+, foreigners and anyone else who's dehumanized or exploited), Integrity, Philosophy, Jews (Judaism, Zionism, Holocaust and Jewish Liberation), the Climate Crisis, Ecology and Veganism, Affairs from the news, or the Torah Portion of the Week, or new insights that suddenly befell him. * Chronologically, his most influential teachers are his parents, Nico (natan) van Zuiden and Betty (beisye) Nieweg, Wim Kan, Mozart, Harvey Jackins, Marshal Rosenberg, Reb Shlomo Carlebach, and, lehavdil bein chayim lechayim, Rabbi Dr. Natan Lopes Cardozo, Rav Zev Leff, and Rav Meir Lubin. This short list doesn't mean to disrespect others who taught him a lot or a little. One of his rabbis calls him Mr. Innovation [Ish haChidushim]. Yet, his originalities seem to root deeply in traditional Judaism, though they may grow in unexpected directions. In fact, he claims he's modernizing nothing. Rather, mainly basing himself on the basic Hebrew Torah text, he tries to rediscover classical Jewish thought almost lost in thousands of years of stifling Gentile domination and Jewish assimilation. (He pleads for a close reading of the Torah instead of going by rough assumptions of what it would probably mean and before fleeing to Commentaries.) This, in all aspects of life, but prominently in the areas of Free Will, Activism, Homosexuality for men, and Redemption. * He hopes that his words will inspire and inform, and disturb the comfortable and comfort the disturbed. He aims to bring a fresh perspective rather than harp on the obvious and familiar. When he can, he loves to write encyclopedic overviews. He doesn't expect his readers to agree. Rather, original minds should be disputed. In short, his main political positions are among others: anti-Trumpism, for Zionism, Intersectionality, non-violence, anti those who abuse democratic liberties, anti the fake ME peace process, for original-Orthodoxy, pro-Science, pro-Free Will, anti-blaming-the-victim, and for down-to-earth, classical optimism, and happiness. Read his blog on how he attempts to bridge any tensions between those ideas or fields. * He is a fetal survivor of the pharmaceutical industry (, born in 1953 to his parents who were Dutch-Jewish Holocaust survivors who met in the largest concentration camp in the Netherlands, Westerbork. He grew up a humble listener. It took him decades to become a speaker too, and decades more to admit to being a genius. But his humility was his to keep. And so was his honesty. Bullies and con artists almost instantaneously envy and hate him. He hopes to bring new things and not just preach to the choir. * He holds a BA in medicine (University of Amsterdam) – is half a doctor. He practices Re-evaluation Co-counseling since 1977, is not an official teacher anymore, and became a friendly, powerful therapist. He became a social activist, became religious, made Aliyah, and raised three wonderful kids. Previously, for decades, he was known to the Jerusalem Post readers as a frequent letter writer. For a couple of years, he was active in hasbara to the Dutch-speaking public. He wrote an unpublished tome about Jewish Free Will. He's a strict vegan since 2008. He's an Orthodox Jew but not a rabbi. * His writing has been made possible by an allowance for second-generation Holocaust survivors from the Netherlands. It has been his dream since he was 38 to try to make a difference by teaching through writing. He had three times 9-out-of-10 for Dutch at his high school finals but is spending his days communicating in English and Hebrew - how ironic. G-d must have a fine sense of humor. In case you wonder - yes, he is a bit dyslectic. If you're a native English speaker and wonder why you should read from people whose English is only their second language, consider the advantage of having an original peek outside of your cultural bubble. * To send any personal reaction to him, scroll to the top of the blog post and click Contact Me. * His newest books you may find here:
Related Topics
Related Posts