Vocations are a joke in this dream. Vast swaths of individuals sitting at desks pretending to do work. Their high credit limit gives them the fleeting feeling of celebrity. The feeling flees, because it is being chased with such bloodlust. The ignorance as to the cost: the slavery. The husb/ife the slow (re)production of magistrates, professionals, and land owners. The drugs. Be honest: The drugs. Something to dull the noise that crescendos as years pass. The stress, the isolation, the long hours, the money troubles...the divorce.
Then there is labor. Labor sells the hours of a human's life for gold... Well... you know... metaphorically; literally labor sells the hours of a human's life for fiat currency. But the deal is rigged. The contract was written by the boss's lawyer. The contract is enforced by a jurist who is the boss's BFF. But this is Upton Sinclair shit. Nowadays labor is no longer useful, it is obsolete. A sign of an older paradigm of economic growth. It is not a worthy profession, it is looked down upon. In the same way that smiles' self help gave people canon which legitimized not feeding the poor, the homeless non-people. That you and I see often when we walk in the city (that is any fucking city or town, humans without money to make rent are everywhere). This same mentality affects the working class. This condescension that "they are not doing the best they can considering their tactical positioning" that exemplifies attitudes towards the homeless is now how people look at labor. Which is silly considering the shrinking of the middle class and that the strike-slip fault lines of global laissez-faire capitalism are becoming apparent. The laborer spends a large portion of their time working, but not actually getting paid. In fact, they spend a large portion of their time working, and paying for the privilege to be able to do so. They spend their time and money procuring the correct attire for the environment. They spend the time before punching in waiting to be able to punch in not getting paid.Commuting an hour there and an hour back (if you're lucky). The commute means you pay before you even work: either exorbitant gas prices or overpriced antique public transit. But these are very simple little things. Now that the industrial economy is in its death throes (I do not say this like it is bad, I don't fucking know whats good or bad, just a subjective observation). The service industry. I want you to ask yourself how many people do you actually know and chill with that work in the service industry? If you are young or a minority my money is that the answer is a lot: Bartenders, Waiters/waitresses, cooks, cashiers, landscapers, essentially these are all things that people can easily do for themselves, but they pay a premium to others in order for them to do it for them. I mentioned earlier how the middle class is shrinking. This may seem to be unrelated, but in my opinion there will be a strong correlation. As the middle class shrinks(go into this next) they will have less disposable income. Less disposable income will lead to less consumption of service products: They will just make their own coffee, or their own drink, or mow their own lawn. If this correlation is true, than the service industry will suffer a decline leading to an extended period of high unemployment. I do not know how this will be alleviated, clearly these individuals will seek training and other jobs. But such an extended period of high unemployment, would have other repercussions on the entire economy. But most importantly would further catalyze the dissolution of the middle class. Because the people who utilize the service industry the most are the middle class. I love eating out, getting a delicious plate of food with a friend or two. But I am just passing the service industry paycheck I get to another worker and letting the bosses take a cut. If there was a database of individuals and their skills (free schools and post-crash sites starting to do this) I could just go to the cooks house and trade a service directly for a delicious plate of food. In this fashion there would be no graft given to the bosses. Most other service industry workers are the same way we perform a service others could easily do and we use our disposable income to do the same. Bartenders and waiters/waitresses are the best tippers out there. The service industry keeps itself afloat, because they are not paid a living wage. So two jobs, and your disposable income is the chance to play the role of the wealthy for a short period of time by consuming a service. To express fiat power over another human, to command and to have obeyed. A small taste of sovereignty of the other, a small taste of control, but it costs money. Ironically the people who daily (re)produce the bourgeois ideology of self-help that made homelessness a crime and labor a dirty word will be the same people slandered with it later. The edges of the service industry is where this is clearly evident, but this vicious cycle will spread until it engulfs the entire economy if the rules of our game don't change.
But why would the middle class shrink and the answer is two things, which we should be thinking of as one thing: Transportation and Energy. I even capitalized that shit. Cars. The personal automobile. An entire country constructed around the institution of the personal automobile: the highways, taxes for maintenance, subsidized steel, subisidized auto-industry. A history written by the personal automobile: The suburbs, white flight, property, status, fashion. A future of blood in the name of the personal automobile: Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia. In order to defend its tactical positioning the United States must ensure access to energy. Whoever has the energy can divvy it up for political allegiance. I'm not saying its a simple handshake thing, but Japan isn't thinking about invading the mainland for oil anymore. Its the energy stupid. And if a country spends such a vastly disproportionate amount of money on military spending like the United States does then they can afford to "control" the oil fields. As long as massive amounts of money are funneled to the military industrial complex then the oil fields can be occupied. As long as the oil fields can be occupied then the United States can maintain global pre-eminence. This is how our security is constructed. The security of our overconsumption. The bliss of never having to build a civilization that can fly. Even if such security is not an illusion, it is predicated upon the insecurity of others.
Labor is not the correct translation for how the products we consume are made. Our clothes, our shoes, our electronics, our everything. They are made by slaves. I will not say that there are certain places where children are and putting children to work is bad. The united States was putting children to work years ago, who are we to chastise when it is our own fault. We chastise, because in that way we can deny our responsibility albeit ever so slight. We know that we buy shit those slave children make, you and I know we share responsibility. But if we can do a two minutes hate every once in awhile. Kathie lee, nike, etc. Then we can ignore our complicity, we ignore the fact that it was not a few bad apples and we ignore the fact that there might be a solution. We ignore the fact it is not just children. There are more slaves today than at any other point in history. Let me give you the meta picture: There are two ways to develop an economy today. Number one is to protect your industry, because they may be new and can't compete yet on the world market. This runs the risk of making an inferior product and inferior industrial infrastructure in the long run, because of lack of competition. But in developing nations the only indigenous entity with the money/credit to build industry is the state. If a country wishes to maintain control of their own natural resources or control of their own product they have very few options. Most of the time this import substitution industrialization does end up creating products that can't compete in the world market. The other option (to develop while maintaining sovereignty) instead of industrialization is to produce a cash crop or natural resource. This can create jobs and infrastructure for an extended period of time, but there are downfalls. First of all if a country is selling off its natural resources they are being used to create a different product. The amount of money and jobs that would be created by an industry that created an end product would be substantially more, but would have the same pitfalls mentioned before. Nothing is infinite, eventually the natural resources will dwindle and what will a developing economy rely on then? Where will all the laid off workers go? These are just internal problems. The main problem with a cash crop or natural resource is that it is all you have. If you don't sell this fucking copper, your country will go bankrupt and they'll overthrow you! But there is one country that buys most of just about everything. The United States. So who do you think decides the price of copper?
United States: Hello?
Country A: Hey Sam whats up? oh boy it is your lucky day, have I got a shit ton of copper for you!
United States: O rly? You selling it for what 10 bucks a ton?
Country A: Haha! ya right, you old sly fox. Same as last year 15 a ton.
United States: ouch. See the thing is I just got off the phone with Country B and she just said that she had copper for 12 a ton.
Country A: Country b!? those assholes? You know you can't get better quality than my copper Sam.
United States: I mean that is an awful lot of mon-Click- oh one second I have another call. Hello?
Country C: Sam Listen, you drive a hard bargain but I'll do 9.
United States: One second -click- That is Country C on the other line telling me he'll sell them to me for 8 bucks a ton, if you don't make a better offer I'm hanging up...
and on and on.
Its called a race to the bottom. So what ends up happening you ask? Countries run out of resources, their currency defaults, there is a revolution, there is a slump in commodity prices and: enter the IMF. The IMF believes the only way to economic growth is through foreign direct investment (FDI). Essentially they want to make the country in to a stock and sell it on wall street. In order to do so a few conditions have to be satisfied: privatization of nationalized industry; massive loans with interest rates and payment schedules everybody knows can't be met; and the transfer of sovereignty to economist-priests. But why would they do that then? Two reasons: 1. Its the boss who signs the document, if shit goes down he'll just ship off to the caymans. 2. The only other choice is to disqualify themselves from the world economy.
One resource that does not suffer from all these predicaments is humanity. Humans are being shit out by the billion. Developing nations just as any nation have ample human resources. In the same way the proletarianization of the american immigrant took place global capitalism spreads with CIA death squads instead of pinkertons. Humans are not given a living wage, in order to survive their children must work. Everything is so fragile the second an income producer becomes sick or injured their security collapses. Why don't they quit? you ask. Why don't YOU quit? The same reason I don't quit I think: because I don't know any other way to live. This is how I've figured out how to manage so far. In same way a simple narrative of a farm family that had two sons. Meaning the farm was split in half. Maybe one of them sold his to share croppers, maybe one of them let it go to waste, maybe one of them sold it to a big landowner, maybe one of them sold it to the other to have enough land to actually farm and left for the city to seek wage work. Why did he go to the city? because that is where the narratives say is opportunity, in the same way they lied to american immigrants it was not opportunity it was fresh meat for the grinder. New humans to subordinate to some great inhuman machinery of wealth manufacture.
Last time I checked 85% of the world lived below what the United States calls the poverty line, which is somewhere around 18.5 I think.
But this is only pseudo-economics. I did not even touch upon the state of the police state. And even more topical I didn't even mention that eventually we're going to run out of oil. We need to build a civilization that can fly.