On reading this item, the salient factor to grab ones attention is the guinea pigs of the study - civil servants. Is there a country in the western world where government employment does not rise at much quicker rate than general population growth? By even instituting a 10% reduction in ‘work load’ per year, government mandarins or municipal state or county officials can bloat their departments and double their size in a decade. Which means, of course elected or appointed bureaucrats whine constantly of their heavy work loads and responsibilities which only pay raises and benefits can assuage. Ditto for their underlings to keep them both quiet and complacent.
So a sharp reasoning group of scientific investigators - taking advantage of generous grant funds from the same governments - reaches the startling conclusion that sitting about all day on ones butt leads not only to boredom, but a possibility of an earlier death. Plenty of other studies, finished and published, also have discovered the identical conclusion. Slumping in a chair all day, wolfing down coke and doughnuts, has a detrimental effect on your health leading to obesity, medical complications and more chance of a truncated lifespan.
At the rate we’re going in another couple of decades, everyone will be on some level of government payroll with nobody left in the general population. At last, we will have achieved the perfect bureaucracy - all systems functioning smoothly with nary a public soul to create day-to-day problems and foul up the machinery of government. And the added benefit will be lowered life expectancy. No more worries concerning increasing old age medical costs or unfunded pension liabilities.
Gee! An easy answer to over population, climate change, war plus numerous other difficulties facing the world - or to be less egocentric, humankind - simply bore everyone to death by giving them useless tasks to fulfill or just let them sit in a room staring at empty walls.
Okay, that last bit sounds a little too much like a prison cell. Could someone please unlock the door or at least allow me to change the television channel?
Photo by Flickr user EdgAr H. used under Creative Commons