Earth Day 2020

Once upon a time there was a planet. Most people lived on that planet as if they had two or  three planets, at least. All they cared about was profit, power, others chased popularity. Most of
them wanted to be bankers, gurus, celebrities, or at least the richest, quickest, fittest (wo)man on Earth. Anyway, something -est. And having MORE. More of whatever. There were some
people on this planet, we must add, who did not care about their ego so much. They took care. Of children, roses and foxes. And they did not want more.

But most people did not care at all, apart from having nice cars, watching movies and eating good. Some thought it is a cool challenge, to eat WILD THINGS. Wild things, like bats. Others  wanted to be smart as snakes, or invisible as pangolins. So they ate these poor creatures. Others were so poor themselves, that they had to eat all these WILD THINGS. At the same time there was less and less forests for the wild things to live, so they came closer to people.

All of a sudden, a VIRUS came to the bush meat eaters. It happened in a city. In a huuuge city. It was not so bad – at least for the virus. “Hey, it’s bloody cool thing to be a city slicker!” – thought the virus, and he went to other huge cities. It started to multiply, as viruses do, if they feel great. People were frightened. FRIGHTENED! Some died, others got seriously sick. Governments also got frightened, so they started to frighten their people. People were even more frightened, so polls told governments that people want to be frightened. There was a panic loop for months. People were advised to stay at home. Most workers did not go to work. So there was less work. Pupils did not go to school. So there were less schools and universities. Tourists did not go abroad. So there were less hotels and airplanes. Everybody got LESS. Less travel, less transport, less things. But also: less pollution! 

All of a sudden a few realized that having less is somehow having MORE. More time, more precious connections, more MORE LIFE. Of course, this was a qualitative, not a quantitative more. Coyotes, dolphins and wild boars visited the cities again. They were not eaten. Some said, that although the virus is terrible, it is not so terrible at all. If we look the big picture. “Of course, it would have been nicer without the virus, but somehow, we needed a virus to teach us not to be a virus.” Others said it is bullshit. “We are bad and a virus anyway, the situation is hopeless. It is too late, we will kill mother Earth. Enjoy life, as long as you can!”
No, said the others. “We should have a 1-2 months quarantine every year. A globalized quarantine, to spur localization.” They wanted to LEAVE resources and opportunities for others. 

Other generations, other species and the poor. “No!”, said the TAKERS. “We take what we have, and others take what they can. If they can’t, sorry, but it is their mistake. Evolution and competition, you know…” They wanted the good old Globalization back. Free trade, GATT, economic growth and all that stuff. Which party will prevail, if the virus-times are over? Leavers or Takers? But more importantly, which group do you want to belong to? Don’t you think we have a unique chance to build a HUMANE & SUSTAINABLE WORLD ECONOMY? Will you do your part?

If the Covid-19 World Economic Crisis were over, my story would have taken longer!

Tóth Gergely / KÖVET