I’ve written a lot about the fourth industrial revolution (4IR), also known as the great reset. Unsurprisingly, I’ve been dismissed as a so called ‘conspiracy theorist’ for doing so by people unwilling to engage in critical thinking. What this post is intended to do is cite a number of examples showing how the 4IR is not something that will happen at some point in the future, but a process that’s happening right now. A process that’s already impacting our daily lives. A process that’s excluding a growing number of people from fully participating in daily life because they’re unable or unwilling to embrace the all pervasive digital technology that’s becoming an almost mandatory requirement for modern living. A process that’s actively discriminating against older people. A process that’s de-humanising all of us as we’re forced ever further into the digital control matrix.
One example of this is the proposal to close the vast majority of ticket offices on the rail network here in the UK. A proposal that the train operators, at the behest of the government, are trying to justify by claiming that the number of people using ticket offices has dropped below twenty percent of the total volume of passengers. This is how the proposal was being reported in our region: Every rail ticket office in Bristol region to shut under controversial plans – including Temple Meads 13.7.23. Another justification being touted is that a growing number of people are paying for and downloading tickets straight onto their smartphones. There is a campaign to try to persuade the rail operators to drop this proposal. These are a couple of posts I’ve written about the situation over on The Stirrer: More thoughts on the dehumanising impact of ticket office closures 3.8.23 and: Shutting ticket offices = shutting out passengers 14.7.23.
The rail network in the UK is fragmented, with numerous train operators running services. For anyone making a long journey involving a few changes and using trains run by a number of operators, finding the cheapest ticket deal online or using a ticket machine at a station is not easy, particularly if there’s a need to book seats. This is where having a ticket office staffed by people who know how to get you the correct deal is invaluable. The powers that be don’t want to acknowledge that, instead, they want to force people to have to cope as best they can with purchasing tickets online. For elderly people who are not that tech savvy, not being able to deal with a human being when buying a ticket for a rail journey may the the last straw, making them give us using trains altogether and greatly restricting their lives in the process.
Let’s take a look at buying and using rail tickets with a smartphone. For us, there’s no chance of that happening until the crunch point comes when we’re given absolutely no choice. That’s because we don’t do banking or payment on our so called ‘smartphones’ and have no intention of doing so. When we travel by rail, we use paper tickets. We’re probably heading towards being in the minority of people who still use paper tickets if the scenes at either Bath Spa or Bristol Temple Meads stations are anything to go by. Which is a pain because back in the day when everyone used paper tickets, getting through the barriers was a swifter process than it is these days. At both Bath Spa and Bristol Temple Meads, getting through the barriers these days is becoming a right pain. That’s because a significant number of people are using their so called smartphones to download their digital tickets to. Digital tickets that the scanners on the barriers frequently don’t recognise which swiftly causes a back up of frustrated passengers trying to get through the gateline. Quite often, to avoid a build up of exiting passengers that will start blocking access for other people, the staff on the gateline have to open the barriers and let people walk through without checking out. It is absolutely risible that the bastards are pushing us to use digital technology for ticketing when the reality is that it’s a bug ridden, malfunctioning pile of shite!
Then there are the self service checkouts at supermarkets and a growing number of other stores. So you’ve got all your goods in the basket and then you’re expected to scan them in yourself before paying for them. Are you employed by the supermarket? No, you’re not. So why are you being pushed into doing the work that used to be done by a member of staff? It sure as heck isn’t for your convenience because self scanning and then having to pack the bags takes longer. It’s being done for cost cutting purposes. At our local supermarket in Keynsham, we’re given a choice of using self checkout or going through a staffed checkout. We always use the staffed checkout. F**k knows what we’ll do the day our local supermarket scraps staffed checkouts and we’re forced to use a self service checkout terminal. Like the aforementioned railway station ticket barriers malfunctioning all too often when presented with a digital ticket on a smartphone, self service checkout terminals are not exactly the most reliable pieces of kit.
Things actually get quite tense as people get frustrated with the technology and the shoppers in the queue behind start to get more than a bit impatient. Still, who cares about frustrated, pissed off shoppers who haven’t got anywhere else to go and do the big shop when the profits keep on rolling in? Those of us who hate using their crappy self service checkouts are viewed as nothing more than collateral damage. There is a bit of a backlash against what to all intents and purposes are supermarkets exploiting their customers: Want a glimpse of dystopia? Visit the self-service checkouts – Adrian Chiles | The Guardian | 2.8.23. It has to be said that it’s a bit weird it’s The Guardian publishing a piece like this when generally, they’re one of the bigger cheerleaders for agenda of the 4IR. Controlled opposition and being thrown a few crumbs are the thoughts that came to mind when I read this piece.
It doesn’t end here, it goes further. There’s this which is currently just a trial: Aldi opens its first till-free supermarket – BBC | 18.1.22. There’s no checkout at all in the store which is located in Greenwich in south east London. Instead, you download the Aldi Shop&Go app onto your smartphone, pick up your goods while being tracked by an array of high tech cameras and as soon as you leave the store, what you owe is taken from your bank account which will also be on your phone. You don’t do banking or payment on your phone? Then you’ll have to accept there’s no place for you in this store and you’ll have to find somewhere else to do your shopping. You want to pay by physical cash? If you try that, the store will most likely want the cops to do you for a breach of the peace! This may just be one trial but you can see this is the route they want to push people down. One where we’re forced to rely even more on digital technology just to survive in the modern world. This is how the bastards get you into their poxy control matrix.
This Aldi store is the baseline the bastards pushing the 4IR want for us. A location where every purchase you make is monitored and directly tied to you because you had no choice but to pay digitally. This is why there’s a war on cash. This is one of many commentaries about this war: What’s behind the war on cash? – Brett Scott | New Humanist | 11.7.22. This attack on the use of physical cash has been going on for some years but was massively accelerated by the Covid ‘crisis’. This was because of fears of possible infection through using notes and coins for transactions. As a consequence of this, people were nudged towards using cards and increasingly, using their smartphones for making payments. Since the winding down of the Covid ‘crisis’, while there has been some reversion to using physical cash, it’s not back to the level it was in 2019 and there’s no sign of it ever returning to that level. I’m starting to feel like the odd one out sometimes when I do proffer cash for payment. Luckily, our adopted local pub on the banks of the Avon just outside Keynsham are still more than happy to accept cash for payment, so there are some glimmers of hope.
Then there’s Central Bank Digital Currencies (CBDCs). Essentially, this is government, via the central banks, issuing digital currency. A currency that has the potential to be programmable. A programmable currency means that should it choose to do so, the government of the day can impose conditions on how the digital currency they issue is spent. That potentially gives government a lot of scope to very closely manage what we can and can’t spend our money on: CBDCs will lead to absolute government control – Miller Whitehouse-Levine | CoinTelegraph | 6.4.23.
Imagine a future where physical cash has been eliminated and the only game in town is programmable digital cash issued by your government through its central bank. Imagine that you’re a bit of a gobby bastard who likes to tell it like it is, particularly online. One day, you say something that the powers that be don’t like. It takes just one press of a button and you’re ability to buy anything disappears just like that. You can’t buy food, you can’t pay the rent, basically, you cannot survive. Don’t expect any sympathy, let alone help from anyone else because if they do offer that, they’ll be suffering the same grim fate as you. Because of the fear of that, the basic human instinct for empathy and helping out a fellow human being in crisis is crushed out of people by a system that demands compliance and conformity. That’s a frightening prospect, isn’t it?
As I’ve written previously, we live on a finite planet. With ruling elites always seeking to increase both their wealth and power, there’s going to be a crunch point. The crunch point is that the bastards think there are too many of us. Obviously, they can’t as yet be that open about their desire to drastically reduce the world’s population. What they can do is manage down our expectations. After the Covid ‘crisis’, they think they have an idea of how people’s behaviour can be manipulated. So, this kind of scenario could well be on the cards: Is a ‘climate lockdown’ coming? 26.7.23. What’s more, they know there’s a constituency that will support this and who will be leveraged into shaming those of us raising questions about the real agenda behind anything that would resemble a ‘climate lockdown’. The bastards would have no hesitation in using the kind of divide and rule tactics that were ruthlessly deployed against us during the Covid ‘crisis’.
To put it bluntly, I’m talking about shit that’s going down now. The kind of shit that’s designed to suck us ever further into a control matrix where what we do, what we spend and even what we think and want to express are subject to an ever greater degree of monitoring and control. I’m talking about mechanisms that can impose this level of monitoring and control which can be adjusted to suit whatever agenda those who presume to rule over us deem to be necessary to preserve their interests. I’m also talking about the psychological manipulation and the cynical divide and rule tactics they have already proved they have no hesitation in using.
The title of this piece is: ‘The de-humanising shittiness of modern life’. There’s a lot that’s de-humanising and pretty shitty about being nudged, nagged and coerced into ways of living and associating that run counter to what it means to be truly human. There’s a lot that’s de-humanising and pretty shitty about the way divide and rule tactics are deployed against us to the point where friends fall out with each other and former comrades are at each other’s throats. I speak from personal experience having lost a lot of what I thought were ‘comrades’ over the last few years because they allowed themselves to get sucked into the games of divide and rule.
What’s also de-humanising and pretty shitty is the way those who can’t or refuse to accept getting sucked into the digital control matrix as cast off to one side. That’s particularly the case with elderly people who can’t get to grips with digital interfaces which all too often, feel like they’re put together by someone with scant regard for the quality of user experience. It’s a case of take it or leave it and if you can’t cope, that’s tough shit. Is that the future you want where those who can’t keep up with the relentless and often, pointless pace of change are slung onto the scrap heap? One where those elderly people who can’t deal with the pointless complexity and shittiness of modern life are dismissed as little more than ‘useless eaters’?