The world is in shambles. The social animal is dying an atomistic death. The nuclear-powered states are kneeling down to a minuscule virus, and the devastation that it has brought upon the world is terrifying. The world is facing its biggest crisis since the Second World War, and COVID 19 has brought to surface the flaws in its social, political and economic arrangements.
Capitalism has shown its worst side. Governments have no plan for those at the bottom of the pyramid. The gorge between the classes is visible more clearly than ever. People who spend their nights in clustered one-bedroom apartments are being asked to practice social distancing. People on the streets, the destitute and the homeless are being asked to stay at home. There is no provision to sustain the daily wagers. The life of a celebrity who tests negative is more valuable than the scores of others who are dying as mere numbers. People have been reduced to statistics: dying, recovered and isolated. All of us are numbers except for the Superstar, the Prime Minister and their likes.
You are okay when the government showers your money to bring back the non-residents from abroad but you are apathetic towards the migrant labourers walking barefoot towards their home. The value of life is determined by your place in the pyramid of class hierarchy.
The Libertarians have convinced you that the poor are destined to die. That Universal Health Care and Universal Basic Income are a cut on your income. That investment in health is not as worthy as that on war. That the state ought to be minimalist. That socialists are evil.
Meanwhile, they are extracting all the services of the government to their benefit—from no-cost lavish accommodations to free calls, travel and ration supplies. They are giving tax concessions to the mammoth corporate houses who extract the surplus out of their workers. But no, they are incapable of feeding the poor or giving shelter to the needy.
The governments’ apathy around the world is being accepted as the norm. What else can the government do? How can it help?
Capitalism helps you when the Capitalist benefits out of it. Capitalism helps you when it wants to. It is fooling you. The Supreme Leaders say they care. They don’t. But you won’t be able to see it. The world’s richest one percent have twice as much wealth as 6.9 billion people. You are not among the richest one percent. You will never be. You are the 6.9 billion. But you support the system. Gramsci saw it from inside the prison, you cannot even when you are free. Your mind is a captive of the Capitalist. You have been coaxed into believing that the ruling power is benefiting you. That the system cannot work otherwise. It can!
Nozick’s idea of Justice as Entitlement appeals to you even when you are meagerly entitled. You have been made to believe that Rawls’ conception of distributive justice hampers your growth. You are controlled. The Pied Pipers are leading you and you are being led—by the religious heads, the politicians, and the corporate bigwigs, sometimes all in one: the power holders. They are the all-mighty. But you are convinced that they cannot do anything to make it better. That their hands are tied. You will elect them to power again, deify them when you should defy them. Because you think they tried. But did they?
You are a number. The voting number, the praying number, the benefiting number, the benefited number, the dying number. You don’t matter. But you don’t care. You believe what you are told. You will buy what is sold: It is mind-control.