Aspiring to laziness

I posted before about the price we must pay for knowledge.  There's quite a few people who don't like paying the price for much of anything.  In fact they think everything would be much better if we didn't have to earn a living at all.

Let's consider that phrase for a moment, "earning a living".  It mean working so that you have the means to support yourself.  You're able to keep a roof over your head and food in your belly.  It may not be much.  You might be sharing a two bedroom, one bathroom apartment with three other people, and be chowing down on some of that glorious Top Ramen; but you're surviving.  Lots of people start out that way.  They get a job, which may not be great, but it keeps money coming in.  Then eventually, and hopefully they can work their way up to the point where they don't need the three roommates.  Maybe even have a bit of money stashed away in savings.

There are those however who think this concept is completely horrible.  Legislation has been seriously considered in some countries to pay people a minimum wage just for existing.  The notion is that people are happier when they don't have worry about paying their bills.  Happier people are more productive.

Yeah, right.

While there are some people who use their free time for self improvement and community works, we live in the era of Netflix, weed being legalized, and free internet porn.  There's a lot of people who if they didn't have to work they wouldn't be doing anything at all.  I lived at the beach for years.  I worked in a little bar.  I've seen these people.  They only want enough money to pay bills and have some left over for booze and drugs.  If they didn't have to pay bills that would just mean more money for booze and drugs.

Not everyone has the self-motivation to succeed in this world.  By succeed, I mean support yourself.  If it wasn't for hunger and a firm desire not to sleep in one's car a lot of people wouldn't work at all.

Then there's those who say if a person does not want to work then they shouldn't.  They can go write poetry or something.  That's ridiculous.  They have this pipedream about some person being freed from the shackles of employment and being the new Thoreau.  The reality is Thoreau was writing about the beauty of a simple life because he was mooching of his friends, and if you're doing that then you better be expressing the greatness of simplicity.

This isn't anything new.  People throughout history have been trying to build a better economic mousetrap.  Karl Marx wrote the Communist Manifesto because he was lazy dope who wanted the government to pay his bills.  He was so lazy he didn't even finish writing the stupid thing.

My old boss tried convincing us that if we just worked four ten-hour days then we could have three day weekends all the time.  Sounds great, but we were roofers.  You work two ten hour days doing that and you're ready to croak.  And that's when the temperture is decent.

Money to live is motivation to get people to do jobs that no one else wants to do.  Nobody goes into roofing because it looks like fun.  How about sewage treatment?  Road paving?  I don't go out six days a week to build, destroy, paint, replace, lift, load, dismantle, bleed, cough, and everything else I do on the regular because I really enjoy back aches and sore knees.  I do it because there's money to be made, and I've allied myself with men who watch out for me and I'll damn sure do whatever I can to look after their best interests.  We get things done because we don't want to eek out a living, but we want good lives for ourselves and our families.

And we'd give it up if we suddenly didn't have to do it anymore.

But then, who would do it?

This world functions because there's one truth that we cannot escape: we have to earn our way through it a dime at a time.  In earning our way through it the world keep turning.  Money makes the world go round, and our sweat is the lubricant.  Take that away, and watch it all grind to halt.