Note — Sep 06, 2020

The Privileged Have Entered Their Escape Pods

Pairs well with the previous. Douglas Rushkoff on two aspects of privilege and fleeing from the virus. The highly privileged and their luxury escape pod strategies, and the more common but still privileged “anywhere workers” able to work from home who have the resources and opportunity to reconfigure, adjust, and secure (to a degree) their lives. He also considers the moral dilemma of protecting you and yours with full knowledge of the essential workers who don’t have those opportunities, many of which are at the same time enabling these escapes.

These solar-powered hilltop resorts, chains of defensible floating islands, and robotically tilled eco-farms were less last resorts than escape fantasies for billionaires who aren’t quite rich enough to build space programs like Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk. No, they weren’t scared for the Event; on some level, they were hoping for it. […]

They’re simply succumbing to one of the dominant ethos of the digital age, which is to design one’s personal reality so meticulously that existential threats are simply removed from the equation. […]

There’s no Dropbox plan that will let us upload body and soul to the cloud. We are still here on the ground, with the same people and on the same planet we are being encouraged to leave behind. There’s no escape from the others. […]

Our Covid-19 isolation is giving us a rare opportunity to see where this road takes us and to choose to use our technologies to take a very different one.