An inconvenience to life

By 22:26

Picture this: you’re sipping a cocktail at a restaurant on Camps Bay catching up with a few friends over lunch. It’s a Tuesday and this is the perfect opportunity to give your tired feet a rest from this morning’s shopping. To end this beautiful summer’s day, you have rock climbing lined up for the afternoon.


Now imagine that this life of leisure is yours. Every day, no stress about working in a job you don’t like. You have enough money to live comfortably. You have enough time to live life the way you want to. You have enough energy to explore what you’re passionate about. Just imagine…
Whoever said we have to work anyway? I don’t know how it all started but right now the average person works 5 days a week for 8 hours a day. Let’s quantify that a bit further. The average person works a nine-to-five. When you factor in time for traffic and preparing to get to work, it’s actually about a seven-to-six working day. That’s 11 hours a day!
The reward? 13 hours a day to squeeze in a decent amount of sleep as well as that life you yearn to live. Let’s not forget a whole 2 days of a weekend to recharge your batteries so you can get back to 11 hours on the grind for the next 5 days. It is torture that feels like a prison sentence.
Work is such an inconvenience to life. The sad reality however, is we have to work in order to be able to afford rent in a decent suburb, a roadworthy car and to live the lifestyle we’ve become accustomed to. I think we all want to be in a position where our salaries afford us the comfort of being able to have what we want, when we want it. But who said we need to give up the best part of our lives in order to achieve this? Is it just because that’s the way it’s always been done? There’s no other way to do it. Is there really no other way to do it?
Well what if there is? What if there is a person who could do your job for you, yet you get to take home the pay? That way the economy could still run like clockwork but you wouldn’t be busting your chops to make it work. The problem is finding resources who wouldn’t mind working so hard for nothing. I think we might just have those resources within our reach…
The government spends a lot of money on detention and rehabilitation facilities. Prisoners of all sorts of crimes are housed, fed and clothed. Some don’t even see the inside of prison wards because our jails are too full. The detained ones wile away their time doing whatever they can – some read, study or just do absolutely nothing. Essentially we take criminals off the street to make our world a safer place. Then we securely provide these prisoners with the necessities and let them live stress-free. The civilians out on the safer streets though, need to struggle everyday just to make ends meet. It sounds like we’re rewarding thieves and murderers and sentencing the law-abiding citizens to a working life of torture.
Well, what if the corporate world could leverage of the prisoners? Take the prisoners and put them in our jobs? Government already provides for them so corporates wouldn’t incur any additional costs. Transport these “resources” to the office every morning, force them to work for their crimes and send them back to jail in the evenings. At least we’re making up productive time for the good of the country.
Of course, the required skills to perform certain task will be an issue but most job functions don’t involve skills that can’t be easily taught. As it stands, companies put aside budgets to up-skill staff therefore they can easily afford to train prisoners. We are dealing with individuals that don’t care much for following rules but there are many ways to ensure performance – the exact same way prisoners are rewarded or reprimanded in prison. Good behaviour in jail gets time off their sentence just like good work performed leads to a similar time off from their sentences. Bad behaviour in jail yields certain punishments just like non-performance leads to the same prison punishments.
The corporate world will definitely need to tighten their security but that additional expense will come off budgets currently utilised for team buildings and socials that will no longer be necessary.
Companies can still meet their revenue targets without paying for labour so why not distribute the salaries to the good citizens? It can even be a government initiative to reward ordinary people with time and money to enjoy life.
Work will no longer just be an inconvenience to life and a necessary evil required in our capitalist society. It will be a mechanism to sentence prisoners while still adding to companies’ bottom lines which enable them to assist in raising the quality of life for all law abiding citizens. The shopping, Camps Bay lunch and a recreational afternoon on a work day don’t seem too far-fetched of an idea now, does it?

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