Roland Dürre
Thursday January 24th, 2019

Barcamp for Active Mobility in Everyday Life (2019) !?

Early in 2016, we had a wonderful Barcamp on Active Mobility (AktMobCmp). The event was held in the Unterhaching Kubiz. Here is a Video recording. A second AktMobCmp was in Augsburg.

It is now almost exactly three years since “Unterhaching“. Since then, many things have happened and the awareness of the necessary change in mobility has grown considerably.

So what do you do if you want change, both for your own ways and those of the world? Well, you visit a Barcamp and meet like-minded people. And you let yourself be carried away with the flow that usually develops in such a Barcamp.

And in no time, you will have managed to change in the desired direction and also have made a contribution towards change in society. This is true for many topics in our private and social lives and also for active mobility.

Consequently, we think it is time for the third AktMobCmp. So we would like to organize one. We (activists and those who feel positive towards Active Mobiilty in Everyday Life) would like to meet in advance and discuss all the relevant questions on Thursday, den March, 21st, 2019 near the Viktualienmarkt at our hosts’ location, the company accu:rate (accu:rate GmbH, Rosental 5 in D-80331 München). Many thanks to the managing directors and founders of accu:rate,  Dr. Angelika Kneidl and Florian Sesser.

In this meeting, we want to decide whether or not there will be an AktMobCmp in 2019 and, if yes, how to organize it. There are a few questions that need to be answered:


Questions to be asked during the Kick-Off-Meeting

  • When and where will the next AktMobCmp take place? 
Of course, the time and location are central parameters.
  • Who might be persuaded to sponsor us by providing a room. 
Only if we can use facilities free of cost can we make the Barcamp as inexpensive as possible for the participants. Usually, only communities, enterprises or universities have suitable facilities.
  • One day or two days? 
Experience has shown that two days of a Barcamp give the participants a very good sense of shared enthusiasm (they generate a flow). A nice evening event after the first day is helpful. 
Mostly, one day of a Barcamp is not so beneficial. On the other hand, the organizers have less work and the threshold for the participants is lower because they need to invest less time. 
We could also make it a two-day Barcamp but let participants choose to only take part on one day.
  • How much can it cost? 
Are there several price categories (normal and extended)?
  • Can we find other sponsors besides those who provide the facilities?
  • What exactly is the job of the organizational team?
  • Who is in the organizational team?
  • Who is responsible for which tasks?
  • How to structure the Barcamp?
  • Pure anti-conference?
  • Additional impulse presentations and/or team and creativity-supporting activities?
  • Moderation and accompaniment?
  • Other ideas?

We advertise this kick-off meeting in Meet-Up, on the AktMobCmp-Website and in Face-Book. I would like to ask all activists and followers to advertise our activity. And those who want to come to our kick-off meeting are kindly asked to both register at Meet-Up and send me an E-Mail, because I would really like to know you in advance and exchange a few ideas. Especially if some new faces decide to join us.

Roland

Gestiftet von VisualBrainddump (Christian Botta & Daniel Reinold) Zum Vergrößern aufs Bild klicken.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Wednesday January 23rd, 2019

Emphaty, Respect, Appreciation, Fondness, … Love!?

I did it?! The nicest mountain pass I ever rode up.

I read (think and write) a lot about leadership topics. And I think we have come a long way. And I notice something that is a surprise even to me:

It was a fantastically long way we went from fiefdom until we arrived at the current concept of #newwork. We managed this in just a little more than a hundred years. That is exceptional, even if the path was at times a bloody one!

It is a good example for a utopian idea becoming reality.

However, all the things we dream of and we can read in all the great blogs on #newwork are not restricted to leadership. No! They are generally valid as a concept for how we treat other people.

It does not matter if we are talking a relationship, a family or some other kind of social system that unites people for a certain time. It is our life!

What I want to say is that the philosophy on which our life is based should be exactly the same as   what we call leadership philosophy. There is no difference. Both in the family and in the enterprise, I am dealing with people.

So we have now come to the general agreement that the guidelines in life should be empathy, joy, respect, appreciation, fondness, courage, optimism and love. And not chilliness, frustration, arrogance, non-appreciation, hatred, fear, reservations and hatred.

Also, I have come to the conclusion that this philosophy of life and leadership should not be restricted to human interactions. No, we also need to meet social systems with empathy, respect, appreciation – and we need to move therein with courage and love. And it is also true for how we treat our environment and all of nature with all its creatures!

If I want to live sustainable, then I also have to love myself and EVERYTHING else. That means all other people, nature and the entire world.

Otherwise all we have is infatuation. That is also a nice feeling, but it never lasts long.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Thursday January 17th, 2019

(Deutsch) (Null), Eins, Zwei, Drei, Vier, Fünf. (…)

Sorry, this entry is only available in German.

A short time ago, I found the following tweet:

Aebby (Dr. Eberhard Huber)

Zusammenfassung meiner Führungs- und Leitungs-Philosophie:

 

My leadership philosophy in a nutshell:

  • Have AND show empathy and respect!
  • Do not spread fear!

Both this statement and the tweet were from my friend Aebby (@Team_im_Projekt), also known as Dr. Eberhard Huber. I admire him very much.

? Consequently, I do not wish to weaken his message. And I would like to add three comments:

  • For me, appreciation is also part of respect. Consequently, it is all about empathy AND respect & appreciation.
  • It is difficult not to spread fear if you fear something yourself. And since I am often afraid, I often notice that I also spread fear. I find that a pity, but on the other hand, I forgive myself because it looks absolutely human to me.
  • My third comment is only that the described leadership philosophy should not be limited to leadership but also be a common life philosophy.

All this does not make it easier. Perhaps the only thing for us to do is become more mature and wiser. Which is also easier said than done.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

P.S.
For more articles in my entrepreneur’s diary, click here: Drehscheibe!

Roland Dürre
Monday January 14th, 2019

It is Nice to be Sick!

Once in a while, I re-read my own IF Blog stories. After all, one of the reasons why I write IF Blog is because I write for myself. So I read the story of my childhood a short time ago:

How I lost my tonsils (Wie ich meine Mandeln verloren habe).

And then I noticed that, basically, I had related everything just as I remembered it. But there is one important point where I fell a little short of the truth by not telling the entire truth. Today, you will read the entire truth.


 

The beginning of four sad years in primary school (“Volksschule”).

My parents had decided that, with my start at grammar school, a medical treatment – the removal of my tonsils – was to improve my poor health. After all, during primary school, I really was very often sick.

And I liked being sick. In fact, I literally sought sickness, i.e. common colds and chills. The reasons for this are easy to understand.

I hated the school at the Wittelsbacher Park.

There were several reasons for this hatred.

In the normal subjects, such as German and Mathematics, I was bored. Boredom is quite a cruel thing.

Also, our teacher liked to beat his pupils (also as a prophylactic method). Once in a while, everyone was given beatings onto their fingers with the black square timber. For no reason. He simply wanted to get the message across what we had expect if we misbehaved. At least that was his explanation – in a way, this was even more cruel than the boredom.

Today, I would say that our teacher was simply a sick sadist. In musical education, he made me very much aware of my incompetence and in physical education, he ordered me around like a dog. It was total oppression – just like in the army.

The way there was a real torture.

The worst was religious instructions. The priest presented a God whom I experienced as an evil creature who tormented his own son in the most unimaginable way.

In summer, I enjoyed the way to school through the Augsburg Wittelsbacher Park. In winter, not even this was any fun.

Even halfway to school, the shoes were wet from all the snow and ice and the feet – as well as the hands – were icy cold.

And when I went home at noon, the shoes were still wet – which was mostly also true for the next morning. Since, however, they were the only winter boots I had, I had to wear them every morning on my way to school.

In winter, there was no motivation for me to remain healthy. After all, the soccer ground where, in summer, we met every day to play soccer, was snowy and slushy – and always empty. Nor did anyone play dodgeball on the court. Some way or other, there were not many reasons to leave the house.

On the other hand, the hill near the Rosenaustadion was much loved. However, to me, tobogganing and skiing looked quite irrational. You went down the hill just to pull the thing up again. Sisyphos work has never been my preference.

So I had no reason to remain healthy. On the other hand, it was nice to be sick.

After all, whenever I was sick, I did not have to go to school. I was allowed to stay in bed and read my books. My mother mollycoddled me. She always asked me what I wanted for lunch. And I often got delicacies such as Wiener Würste, which otherwise were a rarity in our household.

And in the afternoon, I was given a marzipan potatoe from the Dichtl bakery. At the time, that was still a very small bakery in the Rosenaustrasse. Today, the Dichtl is some sort of bakery concern with numerous outlets in Augsburg. The marzipan potatoe still tastes unique.

There were other reasons that made sickness a nice thing. Even my sister, who was five years younger, treated my nicely because she felt pity for her sick big brother.

My small sister and yours truly eating sandwiches in front of the laundry door of our house in the Rosenaustrasse 18 in summer. In summer, I was hardly ever sick.

My small sister and yours truly eating sandwiches in front of the laundry door of our house in the Rosenaustrasse 18 in summer. In summer, I was hardly ever sick.

Even my father was very nice and friendly when he visited me at my sickbed in the evenings after his railway day. And he asked how I was doing and comforted me.

So as you see, it was nice to be sick because everybody treated me so well – so I enjoyed and promoted it during the bleak winter days. It worked quite well.

Early in the summer of 1960, the day of my operation neared. I was wondering if I should maybe tell the truth about how my poor health had been very much promoted and even faked by myself. Just to avoid the operation.

But then I did not tell. Above all, I saw that telling the truth would not have helped. Because even then, plans that had been made were executed in all their brutality. Even if they were very stupid plans. Just like today …


The consequences of the operation were the opposite of nice. Ever since 1960, I have a throat-ache every winter. Regardless, I was seldom sick after that year. There were no longer any advantages to being sick. Grammar school was not quite as cruel as primary school had been.

And by the time I worked, I went to the office in winter regardless of the “then normal“ throat aches and terrible colds. After all, there were always people and tasks waiting for me. At least, that is how I perceived it.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

Roland Dürre
Sunday January 13th, 2019

EROS

For me – and I believe for many other people as well – the secret of Eros is a huge riddle. And as always, you are well advised to look into the ancient Greek theories. On Eros, I found a little book by the poet and philosopher Platon: Symposion – or the Banquet of Love.

Roman copy of a Greek Platon portrait, probably by Silanion and put up in the Academy after Platon’s death, Glyptothek München.

In the Symposion, Platon, Socrates, Aritsophanes and their friends met for a spree. These symposions were regular events.

Each time, the symposion deals with a certain topic. Today, says Platon at the beginning of his book, the symposion is about Eros.

Who or what exactly is it?

Platon introduces us to six men who all want to win the prize for the best oratory on the great God Eros:

Phaidros, Pausanias, Eryximachos, Aristophanes, Agathon and Socrates.

Aristophanes tells the story of Eros as the power of longing between people. It is the story of the ball person, which Platon invented.

 


 

Canova: Amor and Psyche, 1793, Louvre

The ball person was a creature that was both male and female. This person was so powerful that the Gods feared it could surpass them in power and wisdom.

Consequently, they sought a way to get rid of this unwanted God-Competition. A God-like human being cannot be allowed. So they separated the two parts of the ball person by force.

Ever since then, the two separated halves of the ball person that actually used to be one creature are looking for each other.

 


 

The article contains parts of Eros. If you want to read more, just click here.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

P.S.
I took both pictures from Wikipedia.

Roland Dürre
Wednesday January 9th, 2019

“Business Theatre“ (Entrepreneur’s Diary #128)

On this picture, the person in uniform does not look happy at all.

I spent 18 months serving the country (in the army) and in these 18 months, I learned to drink and chill. To be sure, I also learned how to survive in a sick system.

However, these 18 months also showed me how enterprises should not be yet how they mostly are (perhaps because enterprises often follow army patterns when it comes to their organisation).

They drafted me on April, 1st, 1970 and assigned me to the air force at Lagerlechfeld. After a stop at Landsberg, my army career as “Flyer Dürre” started in Ulm on April, 5th. I ended up in a battalion that had its small barracks area at the Lower Kuhberg not far from the Centre of Ulm. The barracks had been named after the war-hero Boelcke (see Militär in Ulm).  It was an old barracks venue, some people actually believed they could still see the (removed) swastika over the entrance.

The barracks I landed in after Landsberg belonged to the training regiment of the air force. The air force was one of the three weapons categories they had in the German Armed Forces: they also had the navy and the army.


 

The organization was quite simple:
The battalion (Bataillon) consisted of three companies and a few staff positions, for instance the medical group, the vehicle service group and the supply group. The battalion commander was only a major. That indicated that our battalion did not have much military significance.

Each company had three platoons. Each company had a company commander (usually a corporal) and the master sergeant, usually in the rank of sergeant major. He was the boss of the administration, including the typists’ office and he had the operative task of organizing order, which also consisted of drawing up the guard service list.

Each platoon had a platoon commander and three units. Usually, the platoon commanders were non-commissioned officers, once in a while an ensign was among them. Each unit had its unit commander who led ten learners for three months of basic training. The unit commanders were generally rank and file.

In summary, you can say that about a hundred recruits (about 3 x 3 x 11) were facing a small group of thirteen (9 + 3 + 1) coaches. Since, basically, recruits are difficult soldiers, the group had to stick together and was often a tight-knit community.

The business model was part of the compulsory service model and also very simple:

Whenever a new quarter year began (on the first of January, April, July and October), the German conscripts had to go under weapons in hordes – they were drafted. They were put into barracks distributed all over the country. Whenever a unit had problems with one of the recruits they had been assigned (regardless of the reason), then said recruit was sent to us in Ulm. That is how I, too, ended up in Ulm.

One of the problems was that the people who came a few days later were totally different from me. In July, most of the new recruits were successful high-school graduates who had been taken out of their units because of insubordinate behaviour or because they had other problems (such as drugs). At all other times, we always had many people with social disadvantages, often they had not finished any school education. Every three months, the mixture was totally new.

Our task at Ulm was to make proper soldiers of these problem cases. They were to be turned into air-force soldiers with simple tasks such as object protection (sentry) or in typing offices (today, you would probably call it back office).

During my first home visit in my parents’ sitting room.

Three of the recruits always had to be upgraded to become future commanders of each teaching regiment. I was selected because I was the only one in my regiment who had successfully graduated from high school (most of the others had not finished school at all). They needed someone who could actually teach (civics, military ranks and structures, learning to use a weapon). This is how, after no more than three months of basic training, I became unit commander with special tasks such as teaching the regimental recruits.

Our staff unit:
The staff units were responsible for the entire battalion.

  • Medical unit
    The medical unit consisted of two doctors and a few paramedics. Besides the general health care, they were responsible for giving out sick passes and, especially problematic, for giving someone the status of “unfit for service“. Many wanted this certificate, but the ratio allowed for each battalion was rather low. Besides, everyone who had been declared unfit by our doctors had to get a second opinion. And if one of the recruits actually managed to get both documents, he was the happiest person on earth or at least on the barracks.
  • Vehicle service group
    This unit consisted of the mechanics and the drivers who serviced our vehicles (regardless of being part of the air force, we had no airplanes). They also moved the vehicles. 
The fleet had a few lorries with which the recruits were driven to the manoeuver or to shooting practice, a few accompanying vehicles, a kitchen truck and a few limousines that were used by the driving service to take the officers where they needed to go. I think we also had a bus, but it mostly sat around. As far as I know, the entire drivers’ service of the German Armed Forces (including tanks) is now outsourced.
  • Supplies
    The supply department was responsible for everything the company needed: clothes, weapons, office hardware, toilet paper. After all, a hundred new soldiers had to get their uniforms every three months. Food, however, was only organized by the supply unit (planning, procurement). The cooking was done by civil servants, of which the German Armed Forces had plenty on top of their 500,000 soldiers.

And it all worked quite well. The teachers (Ausbilder) in the three companies mostly managed to keep all the recruits alive (regardless of recurring suicide attempts). They even made tame soldiers out of them in three months. As a general rule, we delivered the soldiers to their new companies, where they then patently served their time (usually fifteen or twelve months) as sentries or office service persons for German barracks.

We always were within the limit when it came to the number of recruits who were declared unfit. Once in a while, we even discovered a talent who later went to serve at the musical unit of the air force, and the same is true for some top players that we found for the company and battalion sports teams.

We also never starved. To be sure, the quality of the food that was served to the recruits was abominable, but we of the staff were luckier than that. That was definitely something the procurement units managed very well.

So what exactly was the task of the top management?
The company commanders had a fine life and were able to focus on the important things. They often changed (as I said, the battalion had a very good reputation). The only one who stayed long was the commander, the major. He waited for his retirement money.

We occasionally saw the decorated officers when big events were scheduled (solemn oaths, final manoeuvres, celebrations). Other than that, they were not much of a hindrance to us.
But the officers were also quite industrious and diligent. The company bosses and the battalion commander often had long meetings in the battalion mess. They worked late into the night. Once in a while, higher officers from the regiment and from higher up were also among the participants. Occasionally, even a general came, which always caused a disruption in the normal barracks procedures.

And our highest bosses were often on business trips. That was when they had to leave the barracks and the officer’s mess and travel to important Armed Forces or NATO meetings. In military life, international contacts are extremely important. And since they were leaders, they had to attend numerous courses, because, as we all know, leading is not at all easy. And when they wanted to relax, they sometimes flew. After all, the airplanes of the air force had to be moved around.

There are many questions our officers had to answer:

  • How can we make sure the world remains at peace?
    Again and again, they tried to find a good reason for the existence of the German Armed Forces (and, basically, to this day, they never found one).
  • What can we do to promote the reputation of the German Armed Forces?
    That was particularly difficult in our case. Among the teaching persons – especially if they were non-commissioned – we had quite a few tough fellows. Again and again, some of them made the local news because of misconduct. But mostly, they were only mentioned anonymously. However, since we were so important when it came to taming the recruits, we had nothing to fear. 
When the German Armed Forces had huge events, the community of Ulm also was very interested.
  • How can we create a feeling of corporate identity with other units?
    I remember a visit of the Bavarian Mountain Soldiers (Gebirgsjäger) from Mittenwald. It ended quite badly. What I mean is: “some of the equipment was lost, but luckily, with the exception of a few injuries, none of the soldiers became casualties.“
  • How can we become friendly with the other NATO states?
    To me, this seemed to be a particularly important task.
  • Once in a while, they had to approve our decisions.
    Mostly, they did that without reservations. However, it always took time, which caused emotional disputes among the parties concerned.
  • Special attention was given to the athletic activities in and beyond the air force.
    For instance, every company had a soccer team and a handball team. We specifically chose and kept recruits that were a precious gain to the teams. And whenever you have one of these athletic competitions, you have reason to celebrate.

I remember a soccer match against the US Army. At the time, no American was able to play soccer, so we won by 21:1. It was the highest win I ever actively witnessed in field soccer. In fact, it turned out that the biggest challenge was how to get them to score their one counter goal. Imagine all the things you do in the name of peace among nations and brothers in arms.


 

Why do I tell you these things? Because, with the German Armed Forces, I experienced a huge stage where big military theatre was playing. However, it was no more than what I would have expected from the German Armed Forces.

After my service time, when I continued studying and working at Siemens, I also experienced business theatre. It increased all the time and that really did surprise me.

These days, I am also perplexed when I see that many small enterprises are no longer there for the people (employees and customers). With all the business theatre, there is no time left for anything else.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

P.S.
Only two pictures of me were taken during the entire time I served (April, 1, 1970 until September, 30, 1971). Both of them were taken during my first visit home; the first in front of the parents’ house and the second at the dinner table.

P.S.1
For more articles in my entrepreneur’s diary, click here: Drehscheibe!

Klaus Hnilica
Tuesday January 8th, 2019

A Translation Mistake with Consequences ?

Since, after the ‘quiet time‘, we are back to ‘peaceful routine‘, it might be quite interesting to stop and think about all the evolutionary changes that even written texts can undergo. This is especially true for the book of books – the bible /1/:

For instance, in early Hebrew versions of the book Isaiah, there is a prophecy that uses the word alma when it describes the mother of a boy whose name is Immanuel (translation: God is with us).

In some languages, among them the ancient Greek, there is no translation for alma. However, a rough equivalent might be “young lady“ or “young lady who has not yet borne a child“.

When Jesus lived, however, the Jews no longer talked Hebrew. They talked Greek or Aramaeic. Consequently, the word alma became the Greek parthenos, which has a specific meaning, namely “virgin“. The biological term Parthenogenesis (“virginal conception“) is based on it: it describes a reproduction process without male contribution as we find it with some insects and reptiles.

That means that a modified translation of one single word turned a “young lady” into a “virgin” and a child into the Messiah! And the story of how Jesus was conceived suddenly changed completely. …

Matthew and Luke even turn this into a truth in their gospels. And for a billion Christians, it turns into a dogma. Which is exactly what we sing about in our Christmas Carols.

Isn’t it strange?

/ 1 / Adam Rutherford: Eine kurze Geschichte von jedem, der jemals gelebt hat
K.H.
(Translated by EG)

Hans Bonfigt
Monday January 7th, 2019

(Deutsch) Crisis ? What Crisis ?

Sorry, this entry is only available in German.

Roland Dürre
Sunday January 6th, 2019

Slavery – Did Anything Change?

During my last Caribbean trip, I was made aware of a “black chapter” of human history: slavery. I wrote an article about my visit to the museum in Curaçao and how it motivated me to also inform myself about fiefdom in our so value-glorified occident. After all, we in the occident have so very Christian roots…

Dark Future!?

The more I read and think about slavery and fiefdom, the more I am convinced that both have not been abolished for “honourable” – humanitarian, humane and enlightened – reasons.
Instead, it was mostly business motives that caused the abolition of the more than thousand years-old slavery. This change would not have been possible without the consent of capitalism (i.e. of the ruling classes, both feudally and monetary).

Basically, slavery simply was no longer profitable!

Whenever something is no longer profitable in capitalism, it will be removed. That is true both for the overseas plantations and farming in Europe. It is true both for technology and for humans. The slave was replaced by the worker. The serf was made redundant by the steam engine, which later lost against the Diesel. And perhaps the Diesel will be replaced by the electro motor.

A currently enthusiastically discussed question is:

Will humans lose against artificial intelligence?

It would be the next step. I have no answer to this question.
Still, in retrospective, it seems obvious that fiefdom was abolished in favour of the steam engine. The Feudal upper classes had understood that machines functioned better and more efficiently than serfs. It is no coincidence that roboti is the underlying morpheme for robot.

In the USA, the die-hard Southern States had absolutely no chance against the profit-oriented Northern States when it came to defending the slave system. Naturally, they had to lose the war.

Henry Ford would never have been able to produce his T-Model at the conveyor belt with slaves.

His “engineers” had enough on their hands when they were asked to teach the stupid farmers how you build a car. After all, the stupid farmers came from farming and consequently had no sense of industrial timing.

And consequently, it was a good idea if these farmers who had been converted into industrial workers had to be responsible for how they lived after the hours spent at the conveyor belt. You could say that Taylorism replaced slavery. The ruling classes had found out that self-responsibility will be less expensive for them than accepting all the responsibility for their entire workforce.

Basically, workers were just less expensive than slaves.

They simply outsourced the responsibility for their lives (which, in the case of slaves, they definitely had, even if only because they wanted to preserve the value) to the workers. For the black slaves, they also had to introduce a formal act and a document that officially gave them freedom. Workers, however, already were free (as often as not, they were rejected serfs) – and had to fend for themselves. For those who failed and had to be replaced, the successors were already standing in the queue in front of the plants.

This is how the slaves were freed and how cheap labour was acquired. This was made possible by progress in medicine and farming that had caused a huge population increase. Said population explosion is only now slowly beginning to decline. Consequently, there was always a supply of cheap labour available.

Later, the workers united, they became more powerful and sometimes even were able to increase the price. Many exciting legends have been told.

But now let us look at the today and now.

Has slavery really been abolished?

My answer is: NO!

Mind you, I am not talking the still existing form of classic slavery that we still have in certain sectors where the physical ownership of persons is still profitable. Those are called modern slavery.

If you believe the source (Quelle), then between 12 and 27 million people (there is a high estimated number of unreported cases) are still slaves. Considering that we have 7.63 billion people, this sounds harmless enough (October 2018, Wikipedia).

But do we not have a new form of slavery instead?

I do not mean all the people who have been snatched up by consumptionism (Komsumismus).  Yes, the word exists, I have not invented it. Especially the developed societies have many consumption slaves. That is definitely also a form of lack of freedom. Since, however, most of them are free, I will not call them slaves.

For me, the majority of people in this world who are existentially dependent on their jobs live in a sort of slavery. Even in many rich countries, the loss of your job will mean the END for more and more people. You have to pay high rents, many people have no assets (except negative assets).

If these people lose their jobs, the only thing that remains for them is unemployment insurance and/or the social systems – for instance our detested Hartz system.

However, there are many countries that do not even have such a social system. In the extreme case, losing your job means you will live on the streets.

India is one of the countries that particularly strain under this situation. Here, the slum system developed. The climb on the ladder will, in the truest sense of the word, begin “in the gutter” with a (much coveted) place in one of the surprisingly well-organized slums. These kinds of social automatisms are – still? – absent in our country.

What will the future bring?

Consequently, all those among us who have no work-unrelated income and, for instance, their own residential property, are slaves of a brutal system. As soon as we no longer function in our work environment, we are quickly gone.

There is a new kind of feudalism. Today, the leading class consists of people (and legal persons) who have a lot of capital. Some of them were simply lucky, others have inherited from a rich family (which is also luck). Basically, I actually believe that luck has a tendency to follow the industrious.

But that is not necessarily so. In any case, we can say:

If you have the funny stuff, you need not work any longer and can really live.

This means you can use your time for what you enjoy. Many of the persons who are thus independent of gainful employment work on an honorary basis.

I also know a number of young rich people who consciously enjoy their prosperity. And they do what they enjoy and what brings them happiness. Some of them are busy increasing their capital. That makes them even richer and increases the polarisation between poor and rich.

I am glad that I am not directly threatened by old-age poverty (except if our system breaks down). I am quite happy that I was so lucky in life.

However, I can easily imagine how it feels to be dependent on your job and waiting for your money at the end of each month. And having to struggle to make ends meet.

I understand quite well that, in such an environment, the loss of your job is an absolute terror that can destroy EVERYTHING. And, to me, this life style is absolutely a modern form of slavery.

RMD
(Translated by EG)

P.S.
I borrowed the two images from Hans Bonfigt. He used them for his IF-Blog The power and the glory .