TUMBY BAY - An old French saying says 'plus les choses changent, plus elles restent les mêmes'. The more things change the more they stay the same.
Right now, various governments across the world are grimly determined that things will indeed stay the same.
They are bending their will and resources to exactly this end: a return to normality.
Normality means a neo-liberal world in which the interests of the powerful and the wealthy take precedence over those of the poor, the weak and the helpless.
The relentless exploitation of the environment and people must be allowed to proceed at all costs, so as to fulfill the endlessly repeated mantra of "jobs ‘n’ growth".
The startling thing is that political conservatives, so long associated with caution in all things, have thrown in their lot with genuine radicalism, whereby the role of the state is reduced to that of a referee.
The ref blows the proverbial whistle only when things get out of hand on the socio-economic playing field.
The rules of the game are now set by the players, not by governments, most of which are utterly in thrall to the Masters of Money, who dominate in all things.
As for Phil Fitzpatrick's lower classes, their role is as menials and servants, even those who are highly paid. Most importantly, they are consumers. Beyond that, there is no role for them to play.
They leave governance to the ‘great and the good’, who routinely present themselves as far wiser and more knowledgeable than those who now constitute the commons.
The concept of being a citizen has now been so perverted that most people never even think of themselves as more than a taxpayer or consumer.
This very bleak view of the state of humanity is only leavened by the fact that increasing numbers of people appear to be slowly realising the true state of affairs.
But they are few and the indifferent, ignorant and helpless are legion.
So, to answer Phil's question, things are not going to change, at least not yet.
As long as the Masters of Money and their political servants believe that their interests lie in the status quo, there can be no change and it will take more than Covid-19 to shift them out of their comfort zone.