12 April, 2020

The Great Reset

Even Wallace the Wombat is affected.
2020 will be famous in future history books for "The Great Reset". That is what I am calling this historic time of change from what was before (about 4 weeks ago) and what will eventually take its place in how the world works. The economic, social and personal spheres of life will no longer be the same as what it was.
This Reset has been coming for some time. Back in the 1930's, during the time of the Great Depression, many commentators realised that the existing economic system had fault lines built in and couldn't last. In basic terms, economics is the study of how the fruits of a society are distributed between labour, capital and property. In times past, labour has been most important and in many areas land (property) is vital, but since the rise of the industrial age and automation, capital has been a driving force. Our economic models however are still based on the balance between labour and property and have not adequately compensated for the rising influence of automation (capital). Agriculture used to require about 80% of the population and at times we still had insufficient food. In later years manufacturing involved a large percentage of the working population. Now these two major sectors providing all the food and products we need take only a small portion of the working population.
The last hundred years or so has seen the playing out of a system that did not match the reality of what we were experiencing and it had to change. There are many ways it could have happened, but a self induced resetting of the world around us in response to the Corona Virus is how it has happened. It could have been much worse.
You may think the Corona Virus is little worse than the flu, or believe it is closer to the Black Death. You can believe it is all a conspiracy by one group or another or just the result of human fear and populism. It doesn't really matter. The end result is the same. The world as we knew it is now no more and will never be the same again.

This is not a bad thing.

We now have the opportunity to re-evaluate all the important things in our lives. In the past (4 weeks ago) everyone was busy devoting most of their time and attention to less important things - careers, prestige, holidays, distractions and adoration from strangers. The important things like knowing and loving those we live with, our neighbours and our communities were at best an after thought to which we gave minimum attention.
Humans are designed to be personal beings. We come into the world a product of a mother and father and start helpless, depending entirely on the love of our parents. Now that we are forced to be at home and not travel or go outside our domestic structures for validation and attention, we are beginning to learn more about ourselves and those we live with. We are seeing a great many examples of care for others in many communities around the world.
As most parents are now forced to be at home all day with their children and are experiencing a new "School at Home" situation, this will develop into a better "Home Schooling" lifestyle where the most important subject will be getting to know each other better and sharing the life education journey together. This is not all about completing workbooks and assignments and on-line research. A true education is understanding who you are and the people and world around you. In the past the parents would be rushing off to work, the children sent to school or care centres with very little time to just be together. Now is the opportunity to know each other, observe your own strengths and weaknesses in your children and together work on the strengths and improve the weaknesses. After all, you're all in this together. The first month forced together is hard as you learn how to share a life rather than just a house. This sharing of family life transforms the house into a home.
In Wingello, we had the mixed blessing of bushfires rage through our village, destroying homes and damaging many properties. No one died or was injured in the fires and having survived an existential crisis as a village, the community bonds became stronger. Our neighbours, many of whom before the fire were a mystery, became real people who suffered along with us and joined with us as we worked on rebuilding our homes and village. The fires in a unique way gave us a bit of preparation for the Great Reset.
After the Great Reset a great many businesses, both large and small, will never come back. The combination of debt, rent and labour with thin margins will not survive the stopping of trade.
In coming years you will be explaining to your grandchildren what life was like before 2020. They will be amazed and be disbelieving as you explain how life was in how you earned a living, travelled around the world yet didn't know your neighbours, willingly went into huge debt and more.
I am not saying I know how it will all fall out and what the end result will be. The only thing I am sure of is that all the current predictions will be incorrect and the world will be an amazing and interesting place with a wide variety of new economic systems replacing our current system which is like a house of cards from which the bottom card has been removed. We have plenty of food and manufacturing capacity to provide everyone's wants and needs - it is just a matter of appropriate distribution and incentives to make it all flow properly.
As you are now living in a Historic Event, take the time to record your experiences in some sort of journal, either manual or electronic. Write down what you are experiencing, what you expect and hope, how your life is unfolding. Future historians will be looking back on 2020 and The Great Reset to understand what life was like.
This is what it is like living in a Historic Moment.
Be thankful for what you have, enjoy life and take advantage of what you are being offered.

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