Coronavirus exposed how human beings argue about incommensurable values. By this, I mean values that are not comparable on some common scale — values that are intrinsically different. Those on one side, who thought managing coronavirus turned on following the science, … and those on the other side, who thought people had a right to object to having their and those on the other side, who thought people had a right to object to having their lives micromanaged by the state, gave every appearance of coming from different planets.
… The dominance of economics over the way we talk publicly about the things we esteem in human life, and the way this has played into so-called ‘evidence-based policy’, has meant that public discourse is often, de facto, a form of ethical monism. In other words, the monist argues that apparently different values, once properly understood — that is, translated in terms of the super-value — can be plotted on the same scale, and thus easily compared,
… The problem, of course, is that ‘civil liberties’ and ‘scientific truth’ cannot be fitted into one value scale.