Do YOU have capital you want to invest in your future? No? Why not!?
It used to be that you could walk into a bank with a half-baked business plan and walk out with a fat wad of [bank transferred] cash and eighty percent of a company you had just started with your bank manager. Nowadays you must have a proven track record of everything from planning, running, and managing a successful enterprise, to teaching cats to hula-hoop, just to sell forty percent of your idea for a bag of macadamia nuts.
But fear not, intrepid entrepreneurs: a new dawn has broken. No longer do you need pesky start-up capital to make your mark on the business world, you just need those things that most people already have: stuff.
You got someplace to live, right? But you’re not there all the time, so why not let someone else live there while you’re at work!?
And hey, how you getting to work these days? By car? Well, hire out them seats boyo! Markets predict you could make up to twenty Great British Stirling Pounds by literally becoming a taxi driver. You’re going that way anyway, why not pick up a few people — and a few quid — and risk possible car-jacking/harassment/rape/personal injury/other while you’re en route to that job that just isn’t paying you enough. It’s not paying you enough is it — why else would you hire out personal property for minimal gain?
I want to blame the Start-Up culture — I really do: rich people being made richer because they now have a way of turning what was previously mere assets — waiting for the right time to be sold and cashed in on — into constant revenue producers. Once again, it is those who use public transport or rent their home, who are failed by this model.
In reality, however, I cannot blame this so-called “Sharing Economy.” Not really. The Sharing Economy — or, as some experts of spin have put it, Collective Consumption…shit that’s good! — is of course, an extension of the deregulation of the 1980s. Now a single individual with a car, house, and bike, can sign up to a handful of websites and share his stuff with the world in exchange for cash without worrying about petty details like, say, taxation or insurance.
This is what I take umbrage with: the word “sharing” — it denotes egalitarianism, altruism, pro bono transactions. Here, we have people with stuff renting out to people without stuff — furthering this “have versus have-not” culture, further dividing the populations in which these models operate by wealth (read: class), and not understanding the root of the problem that is the money is flowing the wrong way.
Money is not a heavy thing — even in its abstract state. Money is light, fleeting, ethereal. It does not, therefore, “trickle down” — it floats up and creates a layer-like the skin on a soup. The lack of money — now that’s something that’ll bring you down and anchor you there at rock-bottom.
Ask the homeless how well money is trickling down next time you see them down at the soup kitchen. Best hurry though: the property’s owner will be back home from work soon, and the people running the kitchen will have to pay the fifty bucks.