TUMBY BAY - One would not expect there to be any apparent upsides to a devastating global pandemic, but strangely enough Covid-19 has provided one.
This has been in the form of revealing many of the structural, social and ideological shortcomings of our current systems of governance.
This is particularly so with regards to capitalism and its more recent and cruellest iteration known as neo-capitalism where individualism and the rights of the wealthy to plunder the lives of the poor has led to massive inequalities.
As we first reacted to Covid’s impact early this year, for a brief moment it seemed that the beam of pandemic light might illuminate reforms of some of the grossest aspects of these inequities but it seems the light is quickly dimming along with any prospects for change.
In Australia we have just been presented with a delayed federal budget that makes it abundantly clear that the government, after a brief dalliance with Keynesian economics, is reverting to an ideologically driven, rich get richer agenda just like the one we had before the pandemic struck.
In its wake, the opposition has offered a tepid and uninspiring rebuttal full of wishful thinking and not much else.
There is no sign that Australia’s politicians have a clue on how to create a fairer and more progressive society.
In Papua New Guinea the government seems wholly preoccupied with navel gazing and letting the pandemic run its course.
It is making contradictory statements about buying back the farm and charging provincial governors with sedition if they even so much as mention the word ‘independence’.
And, as Martyn Namorong comments, there are the usual rumours of a no-confidence motion floating through the chambers of government.
There is a hope that the pandemic may unseat the most revolting human being to have ever held the post of president of the USA – the election’s just three weeks away. .
But even if Trump gets tossed out on Tuesday 3 November there is no surety that he will actually leave – nor that his well-armed followers will accept the democratic will.
The United States is supposed to have been the birthplace of democracy but that has never been true. Instead, it has always been a corporate and business oligarchy, which is what the founding fathers had in mind when they wrote the constitution.
Even if Americans can rid themselves of their insane president, the replacement will still be a representative of that oligarchy. At best he will only replace high octane chaos with excruciating boredom.
I suppose, like many other things, the pandemic has been a great let down. Which is really saying something.
If the deaths of over a million people can’t motivate necessary change we are indeed in a sorry state.
But, then again, perhaps we always have been, haven’t we?
And climate change has already got us in its grip.