COVID-19 Lockdown: Oh, what a wonderful world

This has to be the slowest apocalypse ever.

All jokes aside, this lockdown has proven to be quite an eye opener. For starters, it’s shown us just how stupid and stubborn humanity can prove to be. From Brahmanbaria to USA, people have gathered en masse defying common sense and rationality. People have been flocking to bazaars, hanging out casually on street corners, and throwing parties, apparently, among other things. If idiocy was an Olympic race, we’d win gold medals for infinity.

What I’ve found more interesting, however, is the reaction from businesses than people. Instead of embracing remote work, many businesses were pushing hard for their employees to continue working on campus. It wasn’t until the second week of lockdown that most people started social distancing and working from home. Even then, many companies simply weren’t ready for the transition.

Of all companies, Facebook has been hit the hardest. The social media network, which you’d think would encourage working remotely, emphasizes “face-to-face meetings and in-person collaboration” as being central to success. They faced massive challenges in shifting to remote work, with no clear guidelines, poor software, and lack of communications bogging them down.

Facebook is a top-tier tech company. Imagine just how much worse others are then.

I’ve never seen this road so empty.

If that wasn’t enough of a shitshow, many billion dollar companies are not paying their employees or simply letting them go. They have enough in their reserves to last a couple of months of lockdown, but no, it’s going to hurt their bottomline, so people have to suffer. Small businesses and startups, I can understand, but companies like Disney, seriously?

That, of course, extends to the garments companies in Bangladesh. They employ thousands of workers who they exploit mercilessly and cruelly. Their owners ride in BMWs, travel first class to exotic destinations, and live in mansions. And yet, when it comes to paying their workers, they suddenly don’t have any money whatsoever.

Sigh.

COVID-19 will be conquered and forgotten over time. But the amazing stupidity of humans and the cruelty of capitalists will not be buried. I don’t know about you, but this whole situation has fully opened my eyes to the reality of the world, which was always there, mind you, buried underneath all the glamor and distractions of daily life.

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