I am horrified by the world that we are living in today. As I sit here at the end of the first winter of the decade, I can’t help but feel like the world already changed permanently — in the course of a single quarter.
It’s clear to me that in the next 12-18 months unless our response to COVID drastically changes, hyperinflation, pathogen deaths and massive economic displacement will soon follow and replace any notion of modern life that shaped the “booming 10’s”.
But this is not the story that I’m here to talk about today. You can read my twitter feed for my regular high gear stream.
Today, I’ll talk about an even darker topic: the second-order consequences of Corona.
When I ponder on pandemics, I can’t help thinking about Cholera and how Marquez in his classic novel made us question our sanity as he metaphorically conflated Florentino’s lovesickness with the bacterium that ravaged through the South American societies of the 19th century.
Can we really compare disease to love though? Death to renewal? Should we?
Corona, like Cholera, will bring in many things that we will love. And we will love them deeply.
But those things will also make us sick. At least for a little while… Until things balance out.
Because like Marquez’s story, this crisis will project both physiological suffering and amorous pain.
There are [lovely] things that will come out of this painful, but ultimately necessary transition: Universal Basic Income (UBI), remote work, reversals of geographic agglomeration, improved healthcare, a greener world and a stronger sense of community, to name a few.
When was the last time that ALL of humanity focused intensely on a SINGLE thing?
Renewed values of a shared common purpose will propel us to the end of the 21st century and the industries of the future will give birth to a new era of productivity.
But make no mistake: This is not a love story, we are not in a novel, and I am not an author. So ¯_(ツ)_/¯.
We’re about to see the decimation of the monetary and the social order to the likes that no one alive has ever seen. Many will be left behind. Physically and economically.
Instead, this is a story of violence and destruction. Because the health crisis has stopped the econ music from playing. We can no longer tune to A-440. And because money is power — one driven by an order that’s now being challenged — our period of hegemony is over.
If history shows us anything is that power transitions are usually bloody. This is no exception.