On 11th March 2020 the world health organisation announced that COVID-19 could be characterized as a pandemic and that a pandemic was not a word to be used lightly.
The early stages of the pandemic and the ensuing lockdowns were hard on many people, in different ways, unemployment, families trying to live, work and study under one roof or individuals having to rely on themselves and draw on their own resilience resources to adapt and absorb the enormity of the situation. There were also many other challenges severely affected the mental well-being of many people around the world and yet here we are, a year on.
It’s a tough subject to write about and one which we are all effected by on daily basis in our own uniquely uncomfortable way. It’s possible to feel both guilt for the good things that have happened as well as joy or remorse for the bad things that have happened and yet relief for the bad things that have not happened too, all in one blink of an eye on a reflection of range emotions and issues.
I do also wonder what would have happened politically, socially and environmentally to our streets, towns, cities, countries and planet had no pandemic occurred and life had continued to race on at its break neck speed into potential oblivion.
It feels like the brakes have been put on a runaway train of consumer capitalism that was our everyday race for life and although consumer capitalism is still very much our way of life and affords us to live, can we now appreciate what we have a little more and aspire to protect and value the sanctity of life in a new found appreciation of what we have and what we hold dear to us. Essential workers can finally feel that well for want of a better word they are essential to the fabric of human life and society.
Who would have thought 12 months ago that to stack a shelf in grocers store was a means to help feed a nation. If I had my way I would give all essential workers and minimum waged workers a huge pay increase not as a thank you but as an acknowledgment to the role they play in a society and economy. This would enable workers to be able to afford to keep an adequate roof over their heads and food in their stomachs. The money that the low paid earn is ploughed straight back into the economy because unlike the wealthy they don’t have the luxury of saving wealth you simply spend to live.
You could tax pollutants such as fossil fuels like they were industries equivalents to humans smoking tobacco or drinking alcohol. You could also create a new digital economy type of VAT where everything bought online had a Digital value deducted tax. It would cause prices to increase but if people are earning more this would still balance out.
Well look at that not been in a pub or had a drink of alcohol for what must be over 3 months and still getting drunk on ideas and trying to put the world to rights. Roll on the open of those bars again so I can go in and start to have a conversation about ideas like this and pretend it is because I am drunk again!