Many years ago, when I was a bearded wastrel supping weak lager out of a plastic glass in a student bar, conversations would often turn towards the 'impending collapse of capitalism' that was always just waiting around the corner to usher in a new era of wisdom and freedom. Ah, heady days. "It's got to happen," we'd say to ourselves and nod sagely. "The Big One's coming, and they're not going to be able to do anything about it."
Years passed. The Big One never came. I became less of a bearded wastrel and more of a balding wastrel. I bought slippers and started thinking about joining the National Trust. I started saying hello to people in shops. I became older. I got a mortgage and a pension and those kinds of things, as well as a job to pay for them.
Now, just when my happiness and ability to feed myself and stop the walls from falling down around me are inextricably linked to the yoke of capitalist machinery, it all of a sudden seems that The Big One is coming to get me. I mean, that's not fair, is it?
Not that it really is The Big One (at least I hope not). If appallingly rich people still have buckets of cash to splurge on crappy bits of art by Damien Hirst or football clubs, then surely things aren't as bad as we fear, are they? I mean, it'll all trickle down to us eventually, won't it? Won't it?
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