Wednesday, 8 February 2017
The River Gannel, Crantock Beach, Cornwall...........John Bampfield
I'm a lucky man, I know that. I'm able to walk from my house down the road to one of the most spectacular beaches in the U.K. in my opinion.
Just five minutes and I'm in a place where I can think without the distractions of modern life. No one calling me up to tell me about a Government scheme to put a new boiler in my house, and more money into someone else's bank account.
Now, putting money into any bank account seems to have almost eliminated the need for any human contact. Even the money has become an abstract concept. Numbers in a computer. We don't usually get to see any gold, the natural substance that our monetary systems are based on, as I understand it.
When I used to visit my local bank, the person behind the bullet proof screen knew me. Now, the machine I'm asked to use, doesn't. Perhaps it's safer this way, no one gets shot during a robbery, which I suppose now would take the form of a hacking. But I do miss the human interaction.
I can't help but think that our use of technology might eventually eliminate the need for the majority of human beings altogether. The poorer ones among us probably.
I suspect that the richer ones would be poorer though as a result.
Machines and computers held the promise of taking the drudgery out of some work and freeing up human beings who could then concentrate on using their finer skills to their full potential, work fewer hours during the week, and be happier and healthier as a result. I don't see this.
I see overcrowded hospitals, and a mental health service that isn't coping. With all our technological advances why is this?
I think that it's because we value those numbers in the computer more than we value each other. Time to stop and think perhaps.