Okay, okay that’s not entirely fair but take a look.
The most up-voted comment is one complaining about undertones of anti-consumerism and capitalism as if that had any damn thing to do with someone enjoying their life on roller skates. I know anarcho-capitalists are wont to accuse leftists of overly-politicizing things but can we give anarcho-capitalists for sometimes not being so far behind?
From what I understood of the movie in the original post (watch it, it’s good!) Slo-Mo is just living his life simply and “spiritually” in tune with what he believes and how he wants to live his life. He doesn’t need a lot of things and he’s already been in the system for a long time being a doctor and getting lots of money and trying that out.
And ya know what?
He didn’t like it.
Is this some sort of universal indictment of capitalism and consumerism now? Can people just not be unhappy with having too much stuff and not really connect it to broader economic systems and relations? I mean, geesh, just let the guy be happy on his roller skates!
Anyways, this part of the quote is especially noxious:
We can all probably agree that one shouldn’t spend their time doing something they don’t enjoy if they can afford to do so, but it is only because of the combined efforts of millions of people, presently and in the past, doing things they didn’t enjoy in order to accumulate capital/wealth that allows for Slomo to enjoy the life that he does… (including himself of course).
Gee, maybe if your history is based on people doing things they don’t like then the economic systems in question may be a little fucked up? Like, basing the success of certain people on the backs of millions of people both past and present sdoing shitty work is a pretty awful system that you are valorizing here. You do know that right? You may as well be defending the Egyptian pharaohs who “got where they were” because people had to do a bunch of unpleasant shit and they (the pharaohs) had to “work hard” to get where they were, right?
But maybe I am being a little unfair here. It just strikes me as horrible to justify mass suffering on some basis of necessity. I am not saying we can’t come up with scenarios in our heads that point to this logic making some semblance of sense. But actually applying this logic to our own ideology and way of seeing the world basically shoots in the foot any notion of progress that humanity has got for itself.
Thanks a lot, asshole.
Here is the rest of this gem of a post:
In other words, yes, the goal is more leisure, but we should avoid the trap of anti-capitalist thinking which tends to support the idea that everyone in life could simply go primitive and we’d all be better off. It’s a fundamentally absurd yet romantic idea that I’m really tired of seeing everywhere.
So anti-capitalism now means…primitivism? Shit, I must’ve missed the Leftists for Global Take Over Memo this year!
Seriously though, this guy has no idea what he is talking about and and frankly this idea of anti-capitalism being reducible to primitivism is a fundamentally absurd yet romantic idea that I’m really tired of seeing everywhere.
But okay, okay, I promised it wasn’t all bad, right? Well, it isn’t.
Take a look at these comments for instance:
I caught a little bit of that too, but I think the main thrust to this is that sometimes you need a lot less than you think, and there’s great joy in “doing what you want” instead of burying it under an ocean of things you’ve convinced yourself you “have to” do.
The fact is, governments have ruined life so much this life very nearly could exist without cashing in without all that ruin.
How much would his life be degraded by working a half day every so often? Things are expensive today because workers are hauling wars, welfare, and crony elites on their backs. It shouldn’t be so hard to live simple, but it is.
I’d like to read a book or two, enjoy a hike. Hard to do even simple things like that. My fiancee is quite concerned she has to scrimp and save vacation time for the wedding because her job is so terrible.
I hear ya, man. Would be nice to reach a point where you only work 2 maybe 3 days in a week.
But of course…because we can’t have anything nice. There are these groaners too:
I’m quite thankful that there are people out there who are willing to sacrifice their lives and do hard work for long hours to improve the situation for the rest of us, and I hope they are compensated accordingly. If work makes the happy, let them work.
I too desire a life of leisure, but someone’s gotta produce the resources for said leisure. I’ll do some work to help another person have more leisure time, if they pay me so I can spend my money on leisure time, so that another person can earn money to spend on their leisure… etc. etc.
But there are higher callings than leisure, I think, and if I have to work harder to achieve them at the expense of leisure, I will.
You know, I am totally fine with conceding that if we had a moire leisureful society that some people might have to (heh) pick up the slack here and there if it wasn’t automated or enough or for whatever reason. And I think if that’s what people want to do then that is cool. But maybe we shouldn’t be promulgating some sort of communal responsibility ethos or whatever that demands hard work and puts labor over leisure as if the one doesn’t depend on the other.
Man, with all of these communal ethos, over-politicization of the personal sphere and really liking the status of being a worker…I think these anarcho-capitalists are dirty leftists in disguise!
Really vulgar ones, anyhow.
Here’s another groaner:
He is right.
The ‘American Dream’ is not ‘Get a house’.
The ‘American Dream’ is really ‘Be Independently Wealthy’.
As in having the ability to say ‘Take this job and shove it’, even if you don’t want to. If you work and you are smart you can live the life you want to live in the way you want to live it.
It’s not even ‘being rich’ or ‘not working’. You don’t have to be rich to be able to do what you want. A lot of times this means you work time to time, but other times you do not work if you don’t feel like it.
It can be very difficult to get to this position. Many things you do and things that happen to you can interfere with this. Things you do control are… Debt is the enemy of freedom. Consumerism is the enemy of freedom. So on and so forth.
You don’t need to be rich to do anything?
So can I lose a lot of people’s money and then get bailed out by the government? Is that cool? Because I am totally gonna jump on that bandwagon if so!
The American Dream is a load of crap in general anyhow and I am not sure why anyone (anarchist or not, and this guy may be not and is just passing by) should really believe it.
So maybe not a sprint, but at least too fast of a stroll for my slacker likes.