(Thirty-minute lockdown read ) My previous post asked the question of what skills will be needed to rebuild …
2020: The year we need to change., Capitalism and Greed, Capitalism vs. the Climate., CORONA VIRUS., Coronavirus (COVID-19), Distribution of wealth, Inequility, The Future of Mankind, Visions of the future.
The world as you know it is now ensnared in more ways than one.
We were slaves to our smartphones connected to the grid all the time, now we isolating. Suddenly the tide of prosperity and the speed of the modern world is now our inner selves with our nations coexistence’s at stake.
While world leaders and politicians flounder over masks and testing kits, the reconfiguration of what is considered normal it is going to take years with the like hood of a mother of all financial crises.
There will be ( and already is) staggering suffering and loss of life, with enormous economic devastation. IN FOUR MONTH COVID -19 HAS TRANSFORMED THE WORLD.
YOU WOULD NOT BE BLAMES ASKING WHERE THE WOKE CAPITALISTS NOW.
How things have changed?
Corralling wealth in the direction of the owners of capital is still the name of the game.
If ever-increasing levels of global inequality are not enough to prove it then let’s see your response to COVID-19 crises.
The list of global corporations giants making token contributions is pathetically long.
Amazon £3.9 million in the UK. Not bad for a company that has avoided over £100 million in taxes in the past ten years.
Gates foundation and Netflicks £100 million each.
Facebook. £25 million.
This is infinitesimal when the estimated that the bills will be trillions.
What we are seeing is large companies crying poor-mouth in the hope for taxpayers funded government bailouts.
Hypocrisy is rife.
Where is Apple, Microsoft, Coke Cola, Alphabet, Alibaba Unilever, Berkshire Hathaway, Tencent, Google, the Banks, Visa, JPMorgan Chase, the Oil companies, Johnson & Johnson, Football Clubs, Supermarket, that are making a killing, the Movie Industry, the Record Industry, Advertising Industry?
Have they got anything more than warm words and good intentions?
(Perhaps I am doing them an injustice. If different, please correct me)
After all, we are watching major Western economies running massive deficits.
The catastrophe is awaiting.
The USA $1 trillion to $3 trillion which will be more likely be $5/6 trillion.
Many European countries up to 20% 0r 30% of GDP.
Even after the virus is tamed -and no one knows when that will be – the world that emerges will be choked with trouble as if it wasn’t beforehand.
Every inhabited part of the globe was and is already in trouble with climate change while we were lead to believe that globalization came with a built-in insurance policy against collective diaster.
Now where ever you look in the global economy we are seeing is in a broken world.
For any recovery as I have said before all of us must come to realize that one’s reach, must go beyond one’s grasp.
All human comments appreciated. All like clicks and abuse chucked in the bin.
Artificial Intelligence., Business and Economy, Capitalism, CORONA VIRUS., Coronavirus (COVID-19), Distribution of wealth, Extinction, Global warming, Globalization, Inequility, Technology, The Future of Mankind, Visions of the future.
( An essential twenty-minute read)
It all depends on how governments and society respond to coronavirus and its economic aftermath.
As we know COVID-19 is highlighting serious deficiencies in our existing system.
Hopefully, we will use this crisis to rebuild, produce something better and more humane. But we may slide into something worse.
My focuses on this post are on the fundamentals of the modern economy: global supply chains, wages, and productivity.
I argue that we will need a very different kind of economics if we are to build socially just and ecologically sound futures.
In the face of COVID-19, this has never been more obvious.
The COVID-19 pandemic is simply the amplification of the dynamic that drives other social and ecological crises: The prioritisation of one type of value over others.
From an economic perspective, there are four possible futures:
Descent into barbarism, robust state capitalism, radical state socialism, and a transformation into a big society built on mutual aid.
Coronavirus, like climate change, is partly a problem of our economic structure. Although both appear to be “environmental” or “natural” problems, they are socially driven.
Yes, climate change is caused by certain gases absorbing heat. But that’s a very shallow explanation. To really understand climate change, we need to understand the social reasons that keep us emitting greenhouse gases.
Likewise with COVID-19. Yes, the direct cause is the virus. But managing its effects requires us to understand human behaviour and its wider economic context.
Tackling both COVID-19 and climate change is much easier if you reduce nonessential economic activity.
The epidemiology of COVID-19 is rapidly evolving. But the core logic is similarly simple. People mix together and spread infections.
We can see from Wuhan that social distancing and lockdown measures like this are effective.
Political economy is useful in helping us understand why they weren’t introduced earlier in European countries and the US.
We are now facing a serious recession and we are living with an economic system that will threaten collapse at the next sign of pandemic.
The economics of collapse is fairly straightforward.
Businesses exist to make a profit.
If they can’t produce, they can’t sell things. This means they won’t make profits, which means they are less able to employ you.
Businesses can and do (over short time periods) hold on to workers that they don’t need immediately: They want to be able to meet demand when the economy picks back up again. But, if things start to look really bad, then they won’t. So, more people lose their jobs or fear to lose their jobs. So they buy less. And the whole cycle starts again, and we spiral into an economic depression.
In a normal crisis, the prescription for solving this is simple.
The government spends, and it spends until people start consuming and working again.
This pressure has led some world leaders to call for an easing of lockdown measures.
But normal interventions won’t work here because we don’t want the economy to recover (at least, not immediately). The whole point of the lockdown is to stop people going to work, where they spread the disease.
If we want to be more resilient to pandemics in the future (and to avoid the worst of climate change) we need a system capable of scaling back production in a way that doesn’t mean loss of livelihood.
At its core, the economy is the way we take our resources and turn them into the things we need to live.
Looked at this way, we can start to see more opportunities for living differently that allow us to produce less stuff without increasing misery.
So how do you reduce the amount of stuff you make while keeping people in work?
You have to reduce people’s dependence on a wage to be able to live.
Currently, the primary aim of the global economy is to facilitate exchanges of money. The dominant idea of the current system we live in is that exchange value is the same thing as use-value.
This is why markets are seen as the best way to run society. They allow you to adapt, and are flexible enough to match up productive capacity with use-value.
What COVID-19 is throwing into sharp relief is just how false our beliefs about markets are.
There are lots of contributing factors to this. But let’s take two.
First, it is quite hard to make money from many of the most essential societal services-key workers low-paid employee. This is in part because a major driver of profits is labour productivity growth: doing more with fewer people – automation.
Second, jobs in many critical services aren’t those that tend to be highest valued in society. Many of the best-paid jobs only exist to facilitate exchanges; to make money.
People are compelled to work pointless jobs (they serve no wider purpose to society: ie. consultants, huge advertising industry and a massive financial sector) because, in a society where exchange value is the guiding principle of the economy, the basic goods of life are mainly available through markets.
This means you have to buy them, and to buy them you need an income, which comes from a job.
Meanwhile, we have a crisis in health and social care, where people are often forced out of useful jobs they enjoy because these jobs don’t pay them enough to live.
While state-capitalist society continues to pursue exchange value as the guiding light of the economy. It also enacts a massive Keynesian stimulus by extending credit and making direct payments to businesses.
The expectation here is that this is will be for a short period.
Could this be a successful scenario?
Possibly, but only if COVID-19 proves controllable over a short period.
Limited state intervention will become increasingly hard to maintain if death tolls rise.
Increased illness and death will provoke unrest and deepen economic impacts, forcing the state to take more and more radical actions to try to maintain market functioning.
Barbarism is the future if we continue to rely on exchange value as our guiding principle and yet refuse to extend support to those who get locked out of markets by illness or unemployment. It describes a situation that we have not yet seen.
Could this happen?
The concern is that either it could happen by mistake during the pandemic, or by intention after the pandemic peaks.
Potentially just as consequential is the possibility of massive austerity after the pandemic has peaked and governments seek to return to “normal”.
This would be disastrous. The subsequent failure of the economy and society would trigger political and stable unrest, leading to a failed state and the collapse of both state and community welfare systems.
Then there is the possibility that we could see with a cultural shift that places a different kind of value at the heart of the economy.
The state steps in to protect the parts of the economy that are essential to life: so that the basic provisions of life are no longer at the whim of the market. The state nationalises hospitals and makes housing freely available. Finally, it provides all citizens with a means of accessing various goods – both basics and any consumer goods we are able to produce with a reduced workforce.
Citizens no longer rely on employers as intermediaries between them and the basic materials of life.
Payments are made to everyone directly and are not related to the exchange value they create.
Instead, payments are the same to all (on the basis that we deserve to be able to live, simply because we are alive), or they are based on the usefulness of the work.
A Basic Universal Income.
Supermarket workers, delivery drivers, warehouse stackers, nurses, teachers, and doctors are the new CEOs.
If deep recessions happen and there is a disruption in supply chains such that demand cannot be rescued by the kind of standard Keynesian policies we are seeing now (printing money, making loans easier to get and so on), the state may take overproduction.
There are risks to this approach – we must be careful to avoid authoritarianism. But done well, this may be our best hope against an extreme COVID-19 outbreak.
Mutual aid is the second future in which we adopt the protection of life as the guiding principle of our economy. But, in this scenario, the state does not take a defining role. Rather, individuals and small groups begin to organise support and care within their communities.
The most ambitious form of this future sees new democratic structures arise. Groupings of communities that are able to mobilise substantial resources with relative speed. People coming together to plan regional responses to stop disease spread and (if they have the skills) to treat patients.
This kind of scenario could emerge from any of the others.
What hopefully is clear is that all these scenarios leave some grounds for fear, but also some for hope.
The upside of this is the possibility that we build a more humane system that leaves us more resilient in the face of future pandemics and other impending crises like climate change.
A key task for us all is demanding that emerging social forms come from an ethic that values care, life, and democracy.
The central political task in this time of crisis is living and (virtually) organising around those values.
Not low-paid workers or National Minimum Wage or National Living Wage because their work is so vital.
Successive governments had failed to reduce inequality between rich and poor despite two decades of interventions.
We must now with an uncertain future focus more on the journey, rather than the ultimate destination.
But be no doubt that we are at a crossroad where the low pay culture that has trapped people in poorly jobs is coming to an end.
Capitalism Inequality can not be allowed to continue.
All human comments appreciated. All like clicks chucked in the bin.
Algorithms., Artificial Intelligence., Capitalism and Greed, Capitalism vs. the Climate., Corona Pandemic., Coronavirus (COVID-19), Earth, Environment, Greed, Inequility, Technology, Visions of the future.
First, let me state the obvious.
The Covid-19 doesn’t just call our bluff it is questing the way we allow our society to be run.
It is bringing into sharp relief what some of us have always known to be true. Our current way of living must end.
Capitalism and the culture of hierarchy that props it up is now extremely screwed up.
The story of Capitalism up to now has been selling your labour so you don’t end up on the streets.
We should not behave to exist this way.
We come into this world kicking and screaming for our own needs while our birth’s, and our eventual departure’s, have all been turned into a product by capitalism to generate profit. We leave silent.
We live in a world where nearly everything has some kind of cost and the increased workforce automation is suggesting that things will keep getting worse.
What is considered valuable by man or the people of this world are of little or no value when one is confronted by a virus (which unfortunately some of us are witnessing this very minute) that does not discriminate any grounds.
Money, wealth, riches, gold, property, power and so on are either transitory, fading or can be destroyed in the blink of an eye and are of no value in the long term.
In the past few years, the money markets have fallen in a heap with the global financial crisis and the value of money becoming very shaky. The same can be said of shares, property and other investments. And this is nothing new for the economic cycle goes through boom and bust every seven to ten years making fortunes at one time and destroying them at other times.
However, men believe that wealth gives you the power to be able to rise above the problems and issues of the world.
How wrong he is.
The coronavirus is not the only virus we have to confront we also have to confront capitalism and the world that sustains it.
Climate Change was not enough to make the world pause.
The challenge man faces is that we think only of the here and now.
We now have a moment to consider what a rapid response to the climate emergency would look like – how we build a society that completely transforms our social order towards something that is in equilibrium with the biosphere and gives to each according to their needs.
But will more sustainable capitalism emerge from Covid-19 highly unlikely as the protection of private interest over public interest remains the same?
What the coronavirus has and is showing is that our cheapskate governments can provide far more in social programmes than they have.
While none of us can predict the future let’s hope that this time the penny drops.
The risks of Covid – 19 are now but the risks of climate change with the clock ticking needs us to wake up before the alarm goes off.
It’s not science, not protest, that will save the planet. Science alerted us to global warming but understand the nature of the world is crucial to dealing with it.
Everything has a function and our function is to fit into our world and not divorce ourselves from nature.
With the age of technology and its Algorithms working themselves into everything relentless, enabling profits to disappear far from the trickle-down effect the coronavirus is revealing heroes and villains across the world.
The markets might be paralysed with numerous industries entering a state of suspended animation the environment is getting a recovery period.
Covid -19 is showing us that on the horizon, capitalism in its current form threatens value. It is built on the premise of instant gratification.
Many businesses today are aware of this failing in mankind and play to it to great effect encouraging us to insure ourselves against the cost of living and dying but we are now trading for time and for eternity.
The corona-virus is certainly a much greater reward than the fleeting pleasures of this life.
The new WFH world that emerges from this will be intriguing – Universal Basic Income.
All human comments appreciated
. All like clicks and abuse chucked in the bin.
Now assaulting a fragmenting Western World comes a pandemic whose consequences cannot be known.
For once we are all concerned about the same thing. Our life.
But our real lives really on the very thing we are destroying on a daily bases the planet on which we all live.
The coronavirus pandemic is not just concentrating the messages we are receiving it is exposing the inequalities created by the soul of capitalism- Greed.
People had a vague sense of these inequalities up to now and things haven’t changed all that much.
All over the world, the poor, immigrants and ethnic minorities were more susceptible – not, as eugenicists liked to claim, nor because they were constitutionally inferior, but because they were more likely to eat badly, to live in crowded conditions, to be suffering from other, underlying diseases, and to have poor access to healthcare.
This much is relatively well known.
One hundred years ago, a world recovering from a global war that had killed some 20 million people suddenly had to contend with something even more deadly: a flu outbreak. The world has suffered many pandemics in the years since – but this one is far-reaching in more ways than the loss of life, with few places escaping.
Pandemics now spread more quickly than they had in the past the result is a disease take longer to burn itself out.
The picture we have of the pandemic is vastly more detailed today than it was 20 years ago, let alone 50 or 100 years ago.
Back then the public health system was in their infancy – in many places, only the middle class or the rich could afford to visit a doctor.
They produced a toxic cocktail of an idea: people who caught infectious diseases only had themselves to blame and the family was often described as a poignant testimony to the disease’s cruelty.
The pandemic revealed the truth as it still does today. Nobody is immune.
Even though most of us alive today have seen or heard of Ebola (mentioned in the media 16 million times) Sars (55 million) HIV (69 million times) Covid-19 has been written about over two billion times so far.
Who is behind this massive push?.
If you believe everything:
(Big-Pharma) want the virus to spread, because it will bring them profits in mandatory vaccination whether it prevents or aids the spread of the virus;
Governments want the virus to spread because it allows them to impose martial law and abolish civil liberties;
There may be an element of truth in the above but must world leaders are attempting to contain the rapid spread of Covid-19 by simultaneously performing two opposing and difficult tasks- preparing their countries for significant risk and avoiding inciting panic.
However, it’s worth considering the erosion of trust.
While it cannot be known for sure, the Covid-19 outbreak may have been contained earlier under different leadership conditions there is no doubt that the current Pandemic will cast a long shadow over the 21st.
Lack of consistency and scale of response will, unfortunately, be refected.
When significant problems strike leaders, must be careful to avoid saying something they will end up contradicting later. Crises management is perhaps the most difficult test for leaders.
Winning short term news cycle isn’t a long term solution. This is especially true with Covid -19 a threat that is evolving constantly.
It is reminding us that we are all connected and something that affects one person has an effect on another. It is reminding us that the false borders that we have put up have little value as this virus does not need a passport. It is reminding us, by oppressing us for a short time, of those in this world whose whole life is spent in oppression.
It is reminding us that ones reach must go beyond one’s grasp.
It is reminding us where there was once a community, no matter how unequal, there is a lack of community.
Above all, it will shine a light on Greed.
When it is over we will be locked in an economic civil war over who is to own a country, its assets and global trade.
We should bear that in mind as we prepare for the next one.
Because the community is also being destroyed by artificial intelligence.
There are 195 countries in the world today.
As to how many people groups are there is anyone guess.
The world can no longer operate on GDP, G8, G4, G7 or G anything if we are not to live scars until we died.
It must come together on all fronts that are vital to our existence.
All human comments appreciated. All like clicks and abuse chucked in the bin.
( Post your favourite)
Those that don’t know that we all live on a planet can be excused.
The rest of us are once more being taught a lesson that a man reach must go beyond his grasp.
This post is going to award virtual Coronavirus (COVID-19) medials to all those that fail to fulfil the above criteria.
The 2019–20 coronavirus pandemic has had far-reaching consequences beyond the spread of the disease and efforts to quarantine it.
A dissonant babble of politicians all struggling, in their own way, to cope with the manifold challenges posed by the virus, from its crushing burden on hospitals and health care workers to its economic devastation and rising death toll.
In days of old nobility might have been a birthright these days it is defined by one actions.
So we remember them.
FEEL FREE TO ADD TO THE LIST.
Putting the American economy before its people.
Sold $4.1 billion worth of shares
Silver. Herd immunity. Economy first.
Gold. Made a speech in Washington in which he predicted dire consequences from the coronavirus, then cashed in millions of dollars’ worth of stocks just before the market dropped amid fears.
Gold. Cashed in stocks.
Gold. Cashed in stock.
Gold Refused to pay his staff.
Gold. Asserted that Brazilians never catch anything.
Silver: Preached to us from a bathtub full of rose petals.
Gold. Posted a picture of his £480 superyacht where he is self-isolating.
Gold: Called on his Twitter followers to donate to hospitals. He is worth over 150$
All additions welcome. All like clicks and abuse chucked in the bin.
At the moment rightly so we are all preoccupied with the consequences of our own individual lives and all indicator point to world disaster on a scale not seen by most of us.
However, if and when we return to a semblance of normal the freedom of the press will be in jeopardy when the blame game starts, which is inevitable.
Why will it be?
Because the present pandemic marks the emergence of a new model of watchdog function, one that is neither purely networked nor purely traditional but is rather a mutualistic interaction between the two.
What globalization, technological integration and the general flattening of the world have done is to super empower individuals to such a degree that they can actually challenge any hierarchy—from a global bank to a nation-state—as individuals.
The fear that the decentralized network, with its capacity to empower individuals to challenge their governments or global banks, is not a democracy, but could lead to anarchy.
But the alternative is to give the government a veto over what its citizens are allowed to know.
There should be relentless exposure of politician or businessman, every evil practice, whether in politics, business, or social life if we are to change the world for a better future.
False news forces us to ask how comfortable we are with the actual shape of democratization created by the Internet. It circumvents the social and organizational
frameworks of traditional media, which played a large role in framing the
balance between freedom and responsibility of the press.
Many of the problems can be laid at the feet of the Internet—fragmentation of the audience and polarization of viewpoints.
We cannot afford as a polity to create classes of privileged speakers and
press agencies, and underclasses of networked information producers whose products we take into the public sphere when convenient, but whom we treat as susceptible to suppression when their publications become less palatable.
Doing so would severely undermine the quality of our public discourse.
The risk is that the government will support its preferred media models and that the
incumbent mass media players will, in turn, vilify and denigrate the newer
models in ways that make them more vulnerable to attack and shore up the
the privileged position of those incumbents in their role as a more reliable ally watchdog.
Clarifying that the freedom of the press extends to “every sort of publication which affords a vehicle of information and opinion” and that liberty of the press is the right of the lonely pamphleteer and individual bloggers.
Social distancing must not be allowed to turn into ruling distancing.
Long live WikiLeaks.
An uncomfortable fact is that a free press in a democracy can be messy at the best of times with governments around the world underestimated the coronavirus the political exploitation of the outbreak is now a reality.
Capturing the treatment of television is less comprehensive as it is a visual medium.
All human comments appreciated. All like clicks and abuse chucked in the bin.
Don’t answer the questions below, put some thought into their overall meaning.
AGAINST THE QUESTIONS THAT THE CORONA VIRUS IS AKSING OF ALL OF US THEY ARE ACADEMIC.
We, as humans, ponder about the life around us everything in life contradict itself to the point of confusing all of us?
What we call the modern world has brought its own unique set of problems: from the Coronavirus, huge food waste to climate change to an increasing wealth divide.
The western belief in ‘progress’, that each generation will be an improvement on its predecessor, for a long time has held true.
However, it seems this might no longer be the case as life at the moment isn’t about finding the answers, it’s about examining our atmosphere. From the nature of the universe (that’s if there is only one) to the purpose of dreams, there are lots of things we still don’t know – but we might do soon.
Leaving the usual unanswerable’s aside, like what is reality, what is life, do we have free will, is the universe deterministic, what is consciousness, will there ever be a theory of everything, what happens after you die, what comes after homo sapiens? the two most common questions at the moment on our lips – Are you alright? How are you?
Old solutions to solve to run an increasingly chaotic world requires governing elites to spend a lot of time spinning and inevitably tempts them into keeping lots and lots of secrets, to include telling the public exactly what they’re doing.
Even post-Snowden, is an increasingly secretive and intrusive national security state the “new normal”?
The timing is fortuitous because I’m pondering a number of big questions these days and I’ll be interested to see not what some of the nation’s best scholars think about them but you.
So for what they may be worth, here are my top 10 Why Questions, with plenty of blame to share on all.
There’s a pattern of contradiction in most of them that lead to a series of more ‘why’.
Once there is danger, there is hope; when there’s truth, there are lies.
Why am I asking these question?
Because we all have to, not someone to get serious about real the state of the planet we all live on.
Do we really value life so much if we make death come to others?
Why is there school when we don’t learn real-world skills?
Why do I have to get up every morning to go to work?
Should the wealth of Economies give us all a Basic Income?
Why do we demean everything not human if it’s what brought us life?
Taking the coronavirus and climate change are we better together or in isolation?
Will Europe ever get its act together?
If opposites attract, then why is there still war?
Why Bush is president of US?
What is the reality of immigration?
What is a world without Earth?
Go through life knowing that your world could mould into a piece of grey dust at any point; an experience that dust at your high to prepare for your fault, your decline because it will come to snap at you.
All human comments appreciated. All like clicks and abuse chucked in the bin.
Is it true?
It’s time to look at the evidence.