Watching the recent stock market carnage, with global environmental and political carnage always on my mind, I recalled the day when I was 15 years old and my flight instructor decided I was ready for a spin.
I had to stall the little Cessna, keep my head through what felt like a death spiral as the ground spun toward us, bring the plane back under control, then keep my shaking wits about me to land it.
I’m still here.
And, I’m now able to articulate what it took to bring my little plane out of that spin. It took trust: in my instructor, in the experts who designed and built the plane, in the science that kept us aloft. It also took a long and rich history of human research, invention, technology, knowledge, and, above all, cooperation.
In these angry peevish times, we can known the world will still be here tomorrow.
Perhaps those who survive the health, economic and environmental hardships will have learned something about death versus living – interdependently, on a small planet.
The world as we know it is spinning away, but this need not be a death spiral, if only we keep our wits about us, and work together.
Links and notes:
“The tools of economic recovery available to governments are national not international. There is no global treasury to stimulate demand, pump cash into circulation, subsidise employment and maintain investment. … The coronavirus has shown a world vulnerable to fear of illness. We have yet to experience its vulnerability to the economic consequences of that fear.”
“there are also some surprising silver linings around the coronavirus clouds swirling on our horizon …
“As with climate change, we need the best science we can muster. While humanity waits on tenterhooks for treatments and vaccines, we need to rebuild our collective trust in scientists, the scientific method and scientific findings.
“So, I place my own hope in the possibility of virtuous cascades of such positive, “normative” change. The coronavirus emergency is already causing terrible human suffering. But it’s also just possible that it could put us, together, on a far better path into the future.”
“We certainly have is a pandemic of fear. The entire planet’s media is gripped by coronavirus. It is right that there is deep concern and mass planning for worst-case scenarios. And, of course, the repercussions move from the global health sphere into business and politics.
“But it is also right that we must not panic. It would be wrong to say there is good news coming out of COVID-19, but there are causes for optimism; reasons to think there may be ways to contain and defeat the virus. And lessons to learn for the future.”
choler: | ˈkɒlə | noun [mass noun] (in medieval science and medicine) one of the four bodily humours, identified with bile and believed to be associated with a peevish or irascible temperament. Also called yellow bile.• archaic anger or irascibility. – Lexico (Oxford)