Thoughts

What We Can Learn From The Pandemic – A Domestic Perspective

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I can proudly and luckily say I’m one of the people that have barely been affected by the way COVID-19 has struck the world.

One of the things that contribute to it is the way Australia has approached the quarantine process, it’s succeeded, though I believe something can definitely be said about my state, Victoria, has handled it (ahem protests and certain religious gatherings making it worse, combined with some state disorganisation). I admit it this fully – though it’s still nothing compared to how worse Europe and America have handled it. Seriously, I still have to bring this up with other Conservatives.

What is the main reason for the way the virus has affected us all? The main cause?

Overconsumption. That’s it.

Our economies went down so fast since we rely so badly on consuming a lot in order to measure growth according to the GDP. While many industries are definitely necessary for everyday life, such as healthcare and food, a lot can be said by even other areas we consider necessary. The education sector has been starting to fill up with nonsense, the construction, mainly domestic construction industry relies on hiking prices up and getting international buyers rather than serving locals at home, plenty of retail is now fast, mass produced. These things are all related in the damage the Coronavirus has caused, since we usually pump more money into these areas that are not necessary.

We have foregone a simple way of life and that in itself is really disappointing. I can hardly believe just a year or so ago I was writing about simplifying our lives and being kind to the environment! This is exactly what could have been mostly avoided.

If people didn’t fund useless ideologies and people who exploit it by country shopping/whining/perceived injustices there could be more money in the treasury.
If people didn’t consume or spend as much on things they don’t need, the economy would not have become this reliant on it.
They wouldn’t be so reliant on having so much income as a ‘standard of living’. The financial hit of the pandemic wouldn’t be so hard.
They wouldn’t feel like they’re missing out on a lot of material things since they hardly even use them.
They wouldn’t be struggling so much property-wise since they didn’t support a system that is only making it harder and harder for everyday people financially.

When I see how COVID-19 has affected the world, sometimes I just can’t help but shake my head.

Now, I don’t want to discount at all those people who truly have essential roles and have just been unfortunately affected by COVID-19. My well wishes are with you and I would fight for that. I have the greatest respect for those who truly contribute to the community, especially essential workers.

What I mean are the bullsh*t jobs and sectors. Bullsh*t consuming. If you work for some sales company that sells things to people they don’t really need, you’re part of the problem. If you work for construction serving greedy international interests that quash local support, you’re part of the problem. If you do some sort of HR for silly diversity whining or quotas, you’re part of the problem.

I know, I used to work in a toxic environment in an online sales company where they sold mostly half-baked shoddy goods as a ‘bargain’ to customers and just made profits off shifty vendors paying for a spot on the site. I was still in that job when I first started this blog. What I thought was a high-flying city job (which to some people still clearly is) is an unethical work that truly benefits no one. It wastes materials and money. Now, I give back to people by teaching and advising and care for my own family. My pay check is a lot smaller, though I feel a lot lighter not having contributed much at all to what caused this crisis.

What can we learn from all this?
Get a job that gives back. Pursue something that brings something fulfilling to the community and together, let’s try to form a moral economy.

What is a moral economy?

Economist Richard Denniss describes it as an economy that focuses on the needs of people being met. Measuring by that, rather than just by the blunt idea of growth by GDP numbers.

If the GDP just keeps growing, it’s not technically going to benefit anyone in the long run! It just becomes an endless goal that exhausts people and the planet. A new economy is needed in order to look after national communities, families and essential needs for every country. A simple life adds to that. Meaningful consumption adds to that. A sustainable work adds to that.

Let’s all add something for a better future.

Okay, that was a little bit corny.

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