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The Prison Of Careers

We live in a time when our professional choices are for life, if we are lucky enough to have a steady job. Sometimes I wonder how things were before the existence of the social state. A world of classes, I suppose. Workers and bosses, slaves and owners. Unfortunately the social state has not taken bold steps yet. Politicians keep seeing both unemployment and careers as something they are not responsible for. Minimum conditions of dignity are still taken as negotiable.

Each citizen wastes the entire life dreading the loss of income enough for bread on the table. Once a job is acquired we must stick to the damn set of tasks because our lives literally depend on it. We may boast our pride for our freedom and democracy, but the truth is we still live in a society based upon fear. Some political wings keep believing and spreading the doctrine of fear as the motivation to work and prosperity.

If keeping the means to survive is so demanding, changing jobs and abandoning careers is insane. There is absolutely no social structure to endorse a citizen with free will to chose how to live. One might be totally bonkers to even pronounce such a blasphemy. Reality punches us in the face with the cold fist of supply and demand. We are not in this world to self-fulfillment. We’re here to be winners, to be successful, to become the few capable of making money pour into our hands. Even if that takes making our soul miserable.

Abandoning or keeping a career is a choice between two suicides.

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Civilization

This word is of extreme importance. Leaders must give it due value in this time of pandemic, of global disease and death. It is the solidity of civilization and the strength of its institutions that will determine how many of us will survive. The amazing capability of humankind to get organized and raising individuals to use their talent for the common good should be the at the heart of both business and politics, instead of the plain accumulation of money. Ambition goes far beyond profit and vanity. It includes vocational fulfillment, a sense of purpose and utility, the idea of having a role in society. Even without knowing or admit it, we all share the goal of becoming civilized or taking the benefits of civilization.

Even the most selfish of individuals, even psychopaths realize that one must be inside the game of being civilized, at least for a while, to avoid being ostracized. Civilization, through ages, developed several shapes, the known pinnacle of which being democracy. What frightens me, and is the reason for the writing of this post, is how fragile civilization is and how common is the mistake of taking it for granted. More, this pandemic is putting civilization to the test and, in spite of the death tolls, thousands of powerful individuals are not taking it seriously. I am afraid of colapse.

This is one of those times when a strong democratic and powerful regulator is needed, if such thing would ever be possible. The only way to imagine such a possibility is with the strict use of fundamental proven laws to the equality of human rights. Instead of giving money and making business with dictators, our democracies should endorse movements to the spreading of democratic secular states. Parliaments should have a scientific council for matters of physical and mental health, education, poverty and the proliferation of job offers. Wealth should be supervised with a non-exploiting and non-impoverishing criteria. In short, laws must be decent and their inspection efficient and effective.

These are my castles in the air. No matter how distinct are civilizations around the world, no matter their languages – all different as a punishment from God, if one is to believe in Babylon -, no matter the selfishness of several of us, I believe a day will come of solid institutions to preserve our rights, justice, and the guarantee of survival, no matter how deadly a pandemic.