Lockdown Volume 4: More Moribund. This time the villainous COVID escaped quarantine, jumped state-lines and in tasting freedom, went mental. A side-effect of contracting the virus must be becoming hyper-social, like some kind of catholic cocaine rabbit. ‘Hosts’ always seem to have spurious jobs like licking cutlery clean at eleventy-seven restaurants a day and providing low-cost heating solutions by breathing directly onto as many faces as possible. And so here we are again, week 3. Then today, just as it was getting boring, people in head-to-toe Hazmat suits arrived and entered a building a few doors down on my street, like something from Outbreak or ET. Awesome. Number of active cases in Melbourne? 64.
Still, lockdown has its advantages (he says, trying to be optimistic). In Bertrand Russell’s In Praise of Idleness, he hypothesises dropping the common man’s working day down to four hours – huzzaaahhh!!! Let’s get pissed!! - leaving the rest of the day for education – whaaaaaaa?! Russell believed that by gaining intelligence, the commoner not only advances themselves but the community around them, the rising tide of educated people lifting all boats in the country. And, you know, licking less cutlery. Alternatively, we could opt to retain the eight to ten hour working day, and just shut down all other distractions and activities. To that end: I’ve consumed Brene Brown’s excellent Dare to Lead; the not bad Naked CEO by Alex Malley; entrepreneurship stories from Guy Raz in How I built this; Phil Town’s Rule #1 concerning stock market investment; and the overrated Paulo Coelho’s The Alchemist. I may end up in the loony bin yet.
The unfortunate truth in Russell’s ninety-year-old text, is that the ruling rich have implemented high costs for education, thus reducing its accessibility. For those that have the daring to better themselves, they are saddled in debt. The plutocracy has the gall to award their own family government contracts worth millions whilst espousing that manual labour is noble, praising the valour of salt-of-the-earth types, whilst robbing them blind. And no, you can’t take a toilet break, pee in a bottle like a man. In contrast, the story of the fortnight is that the top 25 wealthiest Americans collective coin surged $401 billion between 2014-2018. They paid an effective 3.6% tax rate. Jeff Besos of Amazon fame is now worth $200b. Does anyone else feel that Besos, Musk et al aren’t so much heading to space for the adventure, but because they know at some point the 98% are going to fucking lose their collective shit? Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to wear all my gear, sit on my motorbike and make engine noises. Brrrrrmm-brrrmmmmm!!
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