What is work, what is the worker now? It seems we are all becoming increasingly confused by that question. Today, it is as though work and the worker are being worked into irrelevance at the same time as there is no preparation for what this coming irrelevance will mean. For all of us, workers and owners alike. It seems that right at the time human beings have become mightiest in exploiting one another, some exploited with soft and persuasive means, most exploited still with the age-old techniques of cruelty, right at the time when the hordes of the planet are all taken up and mechanized for the amplification of one totalitarian market, we are coming up with ways to ease the burden of the worker and of work, but without the slightest priority in their favor. Or, if there is some action in favor of the worker, it is soon seen as a palliative administered to keep the machine running, like a lubricant. We are further and further engulfed by a world, and a vision of the world, whose power is unimaginable, and whose power is running away from us. Yet most of us have nothing to do with this power, save as miners of the minerals that power this power or indulgers of the toys and entertainment it bestows. We are still scrambling about, worrying about the morrow, while supposed humanity or supposed rich nations make discoveries that shall “change the world.” This confusion of the coming age affects the owners or the masters as well, for they are as unsure of the outcome as we are, despite all the obsessive calculations. They do not know whether perhaps, if this world appears more and more self-running and in no need of human labor, the masses of us will grow weary and wary of working for anything if it is contrary either to our visions or our visionary laziness. In that case who knows in what ways we will be manipulated then, if it is still determined by some model or other that the human being can still add some value to the market? Who knows what we will be made to believe, forced to believe, and what we will be made to do alongside our robotic and computerized companions? Of all the changes of this constantly altering world, one of the last on the list is always a change in our tendency to exploit and manipulate one another. If this tendency changes at all it is merely to change shape or to adjust itself to the times. The runners of the show, these owners and designers and programmers, are just as unsure as we are, and do not know whether they just might be undoing the world with all these new shapes imposed upon it. For if the owners have their way, the workers of the future might not have the wince of pain and of humanity in their eyes, which hitherto had given the enterprise of exploitation its flavor and at least part of its purpose. We might all just start dreaming of electric sheep and wars in the metaverse. We might all be forced into a new form of unblinking, unearthly labor, one in which we no longer eat the dust of the earth, that holy loyal dust, but some spectral dust filled with wavering promises, every bite of which making us crave it more the way we might hunger after horror. As for the owners, no matter how much they enclose themselves in protected splendor, they will sooner or later have to join the fold of the electric sheep or the mechanized human dreamers of them, if they are to find a way to love this world concocted out of thin air and an even thinner heart.
Published by Richard Q
A human being-question chasing after both God and nothingness. The internet is a disaster, but our starlessness might teach us something. I welcome our constant experimenting with ourselves with open arms, for ultimately they are attempts of life at living and growing in life. My dwelling is in Key West, while the dwellings of my loves are Indiana, New Mexico, Texas, Massachusetts and Arizona. These spaces are nothing. Love abides and love embraces. View all posts by Richard Q
So true. Wise words
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Thank you, sweet life. Resonance means a lot to me. I feel we all gain in force when we resonate together. Shine on!
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