One of the most frightening sentences ever to be printed appears in the Observer; "Those who live to 100 have around 100,000 extra productive hours than those who live to 70. Undoubtedly, work will take a significant portion of these hours". Whoa. The thought of some 25 year old thruster carrying out an annual performance appraisal on an 80 year old office worker is not comical but frightful. To the question "And what would you like to achieve over the next twelve months?" the most apposite reply would probably be "to continue living".
That's the bloody problem with Liberal progressives. Just because people will remain capable of cogent thought and physical activity well beyond the historic norms, they leap to designing implications for today's world of work - being employed - rather than tomorrow's. They're already suggesting toilets with geriatric aids for the workplace, and bladder-friendly workstations, but being Liberals are blind to the changes now occurring in work and labour.
The failure of Liberal thought is well detailed by Tim Stanley in the Telegraph. It's the bloody Liberals, of course, who most closely support the global corporates, the ever more savage and ruthless race for multinational greed, resources and dominion, together with their PR agents such as the EU Federasts. Just don't assume their reign will last. Like the Soviet empire, it will prove to be a paper tiger. We need to look at escape routes from corporate serfdom, not to extending sentances.
Here in Austria the pattern of work-life balance as it's now called was won centuries ago and is resistant to change. All shops are closed on Sundays and holy days, and few are open after 8 in the evening. It's no hardship - one very quickly gets used to buying all one needs in good time. The church bells toll in the valley thrice daily to mark the hours - at seven, noon and seven - to broadcast the limits of the working day. Disruptive noise, from washing machines to construction breakers, is banned on Sundays, weekdays from ten pm to six am and (strangely at first) from noon until three pm. Ho ho, you may chortle, English bosses would soon ride through those restrictions. But no, I don't think they so easily would.
In the next valley is a mural on the wall of the church dating to 1465. The official description, constructed by the Catholic church and uncritically repeated by local historians and guide books ever since, is that this depicts the activities prohibited by the Church on Sundays and holy days. This just cannot be right. Just look at the thing; the reality *must* be that this was a charter of rights laid out by fifteenth century serfs and set for posterity on the wall of the church. It is in essence a list of every single work task that could not be demanded of them by their Lords and Priests on days of rest; even the clerks are there (pen nib) and military drill (crossbow and halberd) as well as carriage of goods, flax-working, butchery, agriculture, construction, cooperage and others. Every single craftsman and artisan in the village made sure his tool was depicted and was exempt from unwilling labour.
You see, I'm so sure this was made by the workers and not by the church by what's missing. Drinking, dancing, fornication, sleep, joy and laughter are all thoroughly absent. If this was created by the Priests, they would be depicted. Fifteenth century Lords and Priests were like their twenty-first century Liberal Progressive inheritors, who now need slapping-down with equal vigour. Persons over seventy need the Sun on their face and a glass of wine in their hand, not swipe cards, ID badges, attendance recording and a corporate workstation.