NY Governor Kathy Hochul, High Priestess of the Pandemic Cult: Understanding the “Soft Totalitarianism” of our Progressive Elite

NY Governor Kathy Hochul, High Priestess of the Pandemic Cult: Understanding the “Soft Totalitarianism” of our Progressive Elite


By Kevin Burke, LSW

If you have been trying to understand the increasingly anti-scientific, totalitarian response to the coronavirus pandemic, the Governor of New York, Kathy Hochul, has been kind enough to lift the veil.

Individuals who have not received the coronavirus vaccine “aren’t listening to God,” New York Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) declared during remarks before Brooklyn’s Christian Cultural Center on Sunday. 

Presenting herself as a type of High Priestess of the Pandemic Cult, Hochul goes on to point out the sacred chain dangling from her neck with the word “Vaccinated” prominently displayed:

And I wear my ‘vaccinated’ necklace all the time to say I’m vaccinated. All of you, yes, I know you’re vaccinated, you’re the smart ones…

But as she preaches to the faithful, in a speech filled with cultish propaganda disguised in Christian platitudes, a sinister line slips out that reveals the totalitarian spirit behind the pandemic cult:

“…but you know there’s people out there who aren’t listening to God and what God wants. You know who they are.”

The unvaccinated are the unsaved, destined for damnation, and leading others to perdition. 

What about the health care employees who contracted the virus while in service to their fellow citizens – employees previously hailed as our front-line heroes?

Like the millions of others who contracted the virus and fully recovered, research from Israel suggests they have strong and robust natural immunity – many times stronger than the vaccine. [1]

Can these state employees make an informed personal health care decision to not to take the jab?

Governor Hochul and the state of NY have no mercy for the unbelievers:

Employees at New York state hospitals, adult care, and long-term care facilities who are fired or quit because they don’t want to follow the state’s vaccine mandate for health-care workers won’t be allowed to collect unemployment benefits in most cases.

Ah yes, the totalitarian compassion of the progressive elite trying to keep us all “safe.”

Some more progressive compassion from the state of NY:

“My wife .. worked at the hospital that had the highest Covid death rate in all of NYC. She went down hard w/Covid .. recovered and went back. For 15 years she served the poor .. She resigned on Friday .. These #VaccineMandates must fail.” @MartinKulldorff

Soft Totalitarianism

To better understand Governor Hochul’ s pandemic sermon, we need to first look at the rise of what author Rod Dreher calls Soft Totalitarianism among our progressive elite.

Rod Dreher is a senior editor and writer at The American Conservative and the author of the must-read book Live Not By Lies: A Manual for Christian Dissidents.

Dreher shares in a recent interview:

When people think of totalitarianism, what comes to mind is gulags, secret police, torture — basically, Stalinism, or Orwell’s “Nineteen Eighty-Four… But if we are looking out for the KGB agents to come roaring down the street to haul us off to prison, we’re not going to see it, and we’re going to miss the softer ways totalitarianism is emerging in our society.

Totalitarianism is a political system in which only one political ideology is allowed, and everything in society becomes politicized. An authoritarian government only wants you to obey politically. A totalitarian system wants your soul…

Hard totalitarianism depended on inflicting terror and fear of pain on people to force them to conform. Soft totalitarianism, by contrast, depends on people being afraid of losing comfort, status, and at worst, employment, to force conformity.

Nevertheless, because so few people today will be willing to suffer for the truth, it will achieve by softer means what the earlier version achieved through harsh means…the enforcers won’t need to resort to hard tactics to enforce their ideology.

They will use sophisticated surveillance technology, like the Chinese social credit system, to regulate consumer privileges and access to jobs. Nobody will be sent to prison for their faith. They will simply not be able to buy or sell if they are judged by the algorithms to be bad citizens. China is well on its way to implementing this kind of control.

Finally, the softness of soft totalitarianism is also a reference to the fact that we are building a total control society for the sake of compassion… [Full interview here.]

As Dreher would agree, when its your job and your family’s economic security, its not so soft a totalitarianism.

Reading Dreher’s comments, you can’t help but see the same soft totalitarian methods used in recent years to enforce progressive orthodoxy in maters of race, sex and gender – being leveraged by politicians like Hochul to enforce pandemic orthodoxy.

There is another important factor that may be contributing to the rise of Soft Totalitarianism.

National Deformation

 “Your decision [to legalize abortion] has deformed a great Nation

–  Saint Mother Teresa

The state that is punishing its citizens for not taking an elective health care medication, in January of 2019 was ghoulishly celebrating the most radical state abortion legislation in history.

From Lifesite News:

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) directed that the One World Trade Center’s spire be lit pink overnight on Tuesday to celebrate his signing of a law allowing abortions until birth in some cases…Cuomo called the bill an “historic victory for New Yorkers and our progressive values.”

After 48 years of legalized abortion in the U.S., and close to 65 million procedures, there are few families that have not been directly impacted by the loss of a son or daughter, grandchild, sibling, nephew or niece. Many of our ruling elite have been complicit, in direct ways, by supporting and facilitating the death of children in the womb.

In the after-math of abortion, there is often a deep-seated sense of violating God’s providence over life, and a fear of death and judgment.   However, this often remains buried in the unconscious, and protected by rationalization, distraction and denial.   This is especially true among our ruling elites, whose day to day lives are increasingly disconnected from our nation’s Judeo-Christian heritage.

A nation with such unresolved emotional and spiritual wounds related to abortion, and other serious sin, is vulnerable to totalitarian ideologies and movements. 

Woke ideology for example, can take the place of an authentic experience of Christian repentance, conversion, healing and restoration.   Critical Race Theory (CRT) offers a simplistic, totalitarian prism to understand and view the world and complex social relationships.  The theory and practice of CRT and similar woke movements, provides a counterfeit conversion experience, along with a sense of personal self-righteousness and purpose. 

Yet, the underlying sin, the emotional and spiritual wounds, remain. These powerful forces feed into the demonizing of opponents, and the devolution of politics and woke ideology into various forms of soft totalitarianism.

Cult of Pandemic

For the true believers like NY Governor Hochul, there is only one orthodox response to the pandemic. Members of this cult must strictly adhere to all the officially approved tenets of the faith.

The pandemic cult[2] features:

It is unfortunate that some of our religious leaders have chosen to provide cover for the pandemic cult by supporting the soft totalitarian policy of “vaccine mandates.” 

Dr. Robert Malone, MD., made key discoveries that led to the development of the RNA technology used in Covid vaccines.  Dr. Malone presents a much healthier response to the pandemic:

“There is a middle ground here.  Between universal vax and no vax.  That is where I reside. Intelligent, strategic deployment of vaccines to high risk, coupled with early (imperfect, but still pretty darned good) pharmaceutical intervention.

In addition, web/smartphone tools to provide self-assessment of risk, and home-based self-testing.  No coercion. Freedom of choice. No mandates. Treat people with respect and dignity, not like livestock. 

And drop the authoritarianism, censorship, fearmongering.”

Robert Malone – Twitter

Our religious leaders would do well to listen to reasoned minds like Dr. Malone, rather than becoming accomplices in the enforcement of totalitarian mandates by some government leaders in D.C., and on the state and local level. 

  • Congressman and Medical Doctor Rand Paul, confronting the Biden administration’s unjust and un-scientific vaccine mandates:

[1] In Israel, vaccinated individuals had 27 times higher risk of symptomatic COVID infection compared to those with natural immunity from prior COVID disease [95%CI:13-57, adjusted for time of vaccine/disease]. No COVID deaths in either group. Comparing SARS-CoV-2 natural immunity to vaccine-induced immunity: reinfections versus breakthrough infections | medRxiv

[2] This is not a comment on the value of a particular medical or public health response to the virus.  It’s the totalitarian temptation public official’s face with the pandemic, the zealous enforcement of pandemic orthodoxy, and censorship and suppression of alternative perspectives.


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