The Rich Get Richer – The Rest Can Just Fuckoff?

Life – Terror. Ecstasy. Fight. Denial. Flight. Failure. PAIN. Forgiveness. Reconciliation. Hope. Love. Peace – Death.

The Pandemic – Fourteen months on

Living within an ultimate deadline?

Possibilities. Necessities. Practicalities. Realities. I have left my house only a handful of times in more than a year. I am now (at least) a year behind in my plans of ‘things to do before I die’. A year lost that I did not have spare. One of five.

Freedom. Independence. Choice. Me. Us. Others. Time.

The Pandemic has highlighted many things. For some (myself) it has allowed more time to think about things. Some things I already think (too much) about.

I have thought about my parents and grandparents and the wars they lived (and died) thru. Entire countries, continents united in opposition to a shared enemy.

The thing about a war is that if both sides think they are right, who is wrong?

The Pandemic, our invisible war has forced us to contemplate the fragilities of our very existence. To recognise how vulnerable, how fragile (human life) is?

In the harshest of terms, helplessly and tragically for some, ending with death.

Death without compassion. Death without dignity. Death without the ability to grieve. Death without choice. An unwelcome, abnormal death. Horrible, lonely death. We are not good at death in the best of times….

If we get past those starkest of realities, we can perhaps see how much we take our normal lives within our normal world for granted?

This pandemic is a war, our war, a war against an enemy that does not discriminate between nationalities, race, colour, religion, faith, politics, position. It does not care if we are wealthy or poor, old, or young, happy or sad. An enemy without remorse, without compassion, where right and wrong are not relevant.

It is clever (cleverer than us), it adapts and thrives on our weaknesses. It is quick, agile, coming from nowhere, within only months turning our world inside out and it is not done yet. It has brothers and sisters who will also be coming. This will happen again.

What has this taught me (us)? What have I (we) learned?

Above all?

How together we can be and yet how divided we are?

As a species we are fragile, much more vulnerable that we thought?  Vulnerability travels downwards and upwards into every aspect of our lives, our world. The normal constructs of financial stability, health-well being are in tatters. However, we now have an opportunity to adjust our current status quo and values. To adapt for the better, for the future. A potential for meaningful, much needed resetting of norms.

Pre-covid important things are not as important as we (think) thought. There are more important (post-covid) things. Things that can make our lives, our world better (for everyone).

Covid has also shown us how inept, unsustainable and unfulfilling a totally materialistic, neoliberal ideology is. For those who already thought this it has proven it? For those who didn’t including some who were not even aware, it is offering a choice, a catalyst for change, change for the better?

It’s not simple.

We are used to being controlled, manipulated (sold) a lifestyle. A powerful doctrine based upon constantly improving, ‘bettering ourselves’, with promises of attractive rewards, …… a nice car, a nice house, expensive clothes, travel to exotic places. Why not, fair enough, work hard and reap the rewards? At what price? At what price to us, at what price to others, others the same as us, others less fortunate, others more fortunate? That’s just it, it doesn’t end there. It doesn’t end at all.

Two, three cars, an even nicer bigger house, a second house, on and on, chasing the ‘next’ target, increasing the debt …. a perpetual chase so consuming we cannot even draw breath, we are too busy progressing to consider and appreciate what we have. It has become all about what we want?

Time. In the (contemporary) world time has become a luxury. The most priceless luxuries. Time for contemplation. Time for thought. Time for each other (family). Time for appreciation. Time to be content. Time to be happy (and sad).

There has never been more undeniable proof of how we are systematically destroying our planet? Relentlessly exhausting our natural resources resulting in vast amounts of pollution, resulting in irreversible consequences like climate change. 

India (is fucked)

The pandemic has opened a window to many things ….it has shown that the divide between the haves and the have nots has never been more wider nor more visible.

India has a (rising) population of 1,391,308,838. A country (falsely) considered poor in comparison to the rich countries of the ‘West’ A country that also has pockets of unimaginable wealth.

With 140 billionaires in 2021, India has surpassed Germany (having 136 billionaires) to claim the third spot in countries with the most billionaires 2021, Forbes said, India’s top three richest people have added over $100 billion between them during the pandemic. 

India has been ranked among the 10 wealthiest countries globally with total individual wealth of $5,200 billion, but this is largely owing to its large population, on a per capita basis, the average Indian is “quite poor”.

India is producing roughly 2 million Covid vaccine doses each day. In all, 66 million vaccine doses were exported, while India’s entire vaccine programme over three months from mid-January to mid-April has provided 130 million doses.

Why? Because they can (do) sell them, (they do this) cheaper than anywhere else. Why? Because their costs for producing are lower than anywhere else. Why? Because they pay their employees so little. The highest cost in the manufacturing process is human resources, wages. India pay their people a pittance in wages.

India have made an economic decision NOT to vaccinate their own people. India has chosen to let them their people get sick, to die in order for someone to make (more) money.

The Covid situation in India is severe, with more than 350,000 new registered daily infections and approaching 250,000 (confirmed) deaths. Other countries are now that concerned that they will soon run out of raw materials needed for India’s coronavirus vaccine production.

Fewer than 10 percent of Indians have received even one dose, and just 1.6 percent are fully vaccinated, even though India is producing two vaccines on its own soil.

Indian people will die so that western people will live and so that (a few) Indian people can make more money. https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-020-02507-x

The Serum Institute (India) has priced the Oxford vaccine at 225 rupees (US$3) a dose. That means the cost of vaccinating 400 million Indian people will be at least $1.2 billion. Typically, the government buys vaccines for less than the price of bottled water — 60 rupees. “We have never paid $3 for a vaccine,” says a political spokesperson.

Consequently, it’s unlikely that the Indian government will bear the cost of immunizing its people. It will possibly pay for vaccinations for the poorest citizens, and ask everyone else to buy their own vaccines.

The insatiable pursuit of profit, increased profit at any and all cost does not work and cannot continue?

Thanks for reading

Peace

Published by Riff

Husband to my inspirational, (long suffering) wife, father of two amazing (adult) children, teacher, former guitarist (now guitar owner), recent 'granda(r) to my beautiful grandson who I am yet to meet. I Love people. I love my family, my friends, I love(d) what I do (my Job), I love Music, Cars, Everton .... I love many things, most of all I fucking love 'life'.

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