Answer: Nothing that's good for the machine.
Each one of us is, potentially, a grain of sand.
Most of us are born into the Megamachine and even those few who aren't cannot avoid it's impact.
What then shall we do?
The family seen at the top left have been born into the machine but have made their way out onto the surface. They have a sack containing 8 billion grains of sand. There will soon be 8 billion people on Earth. The little boy is steadfastly using his cornucopia-like spade to shovel the sand grains into the machine.
Everything I've drawn is real and will be happening somewhere right now to individual people and animals, some of whose stories I have tried to tell in my drawing.
Let me take you on a tour through the Megamachine:
It's purpose is to convert life for all into money for the few. Just to be clear, this includes your life and mine too.
At the right of the drawing we see huge saws and jaws gouging up ancient trees, already like ghosts, indigenous people, plants and animals. A young female whale shark named Hope wears a transponder, she is swimming off the Galapagos Islands. Suddenly her researchers detect she has sped up, she tries to dive but then her transponder winks out. She has been killed by a Chinese ship, part of an industrial fishing fleet emptying the sea of life.
A family from an uncontacted tribe is in deep trouble. The man tries to defend his wife and child from the descending jaws using a bow and arrow.
Joshua trees, slow to grow and living centuries in the desert are ripped up to clear the land for solar panels.
In the deep ocean the oases of life at hydrothermal vents known as 'black smokers' are mined for their minerals. The oceanic plains, scattered with mineral nodules, will soon join them.
A bear claws feebly at an implant to drain it's bile for useless 'medicine'
A mother pangolin and her baby have been captured and try to escape across the floor of the warehouse. A man stops her by standing on her tail. Mother and baby will be separated, the mother made into 'medicine' and the baby the highlight of a banquet to impress.
Unwanted male chicks cascade into a crusher.
An unidentifiable mangled animal is held aloft, daintily, by an armature and carried along to be processed.
All is fodder to be processed into monetised products.
But, hey! It's OK because everything is carbon zero! You can still have what you want with a conscience washed clear by green growth!
A conveyor belt brings stuff to you, the consumer. Because that's your purpose, don't you see? You shouldn't have to wait for anything or be denied anything when a global supply chain can pop it through your letterbox.
A woman gazes rapturously at a plastic spoon but meanwhile....
An 18 year old mother weeps as her little son, his tiny legs deformed to stumps, examines the end on an ethernet cable. He was born by the open cast cobalt mine. Young men squeeze into the mine shafts to dig for rare earth minerals.
Wow! That was tough! Lets pull back now, come up for air, and take a tour of the rest of the Megamachine.
High up, where the egos are rarified, buoyed up by obscene sums of money is Mr Bezos and his 'dick' rocket! What fun!!!
Nearby, we see 'The Beating Heart of Commerce'. So dark and featureless that no illumination shines forth. It is kept going by the injection of enormous amounts of fiat ('to will into existence') currency. Investment corporations bigger than national economies look after it's interests, their capillaries of influence entangled everywhere the Machine needs them to be. Including 'the Narrow Confines of Permitted Democracy' where voters are fed various flavours of s**t by the client media platforms of the political parties. On the right of the voting booth the s**t is sent skyward by a unicorn. This is the famous Brexit unicorn upon which, the promise went, happy little englanders would ride to share in the abundance of the sunlit uplands, a land flowing with post-brexit milk and honey. The flowing s**t has turned out to be true but not the milk and honey.
The electorate is so much easier to manipulate if kept in their designated silos, barriers of barbed suspicion, even hatred, preventing them actually listening to each other and discovering common humanity. I was reminded of the 'big enders' and 'little enders' from Jonathan Swift's tale,'Gulliver's Travels', where two nations have been at war for generations based on which end of a boiled egg they each dogmatically know to be the correct end to slice it open. You should read Swift; it's savage satirical stuff.
Swift pops up again at the impossible burger of Mr Bill Gates' foray into controlling global agriculture and food supply. 'A modest proposal' was part of Swift's title for a pamphlet he published in 1729 laying out the case for impoverished Irish folk selling their children as food to rich ladies and gentleman to ease their economic burden.
Other features of the Megamachine on view at this end of the ponderous vehicle include education systems that teach children not to think as well as the world's most expensive passenger car. This is the Bugatti 'La Voiture Noire' which costs $19,000,000. Is it worth it? Unless it has time travelling capabilities, I would say probably not. As I was making this part of the drawing, current events in the UK involving Rishi Sunak, then Chancellor, and his wife's non domicile tax status were making headlines. So the Sunaks made it to my drawing and we see them skipping happily through a tax loop hole to some offshore haven.
Gliding back to 'The Beating Heart of Commerce' we see an elderly lady huddled in the cold and darkness beneath it. She is heating a cup of soup over a candle flame. I hope that this little drawing expresses the weeping anger and frustration I feel when folk, mainly elderly, try to rationalise away their utter betrayal by the Johnson government of their most basic protections even to life itself.
Featured nearby are 'The Devils of Division' diligently jabbing away. Here we see too the techno slave ship of 'Data Harvesting'. So lucrative!
In the air above the Megamachine we see real world events again taking place at the opportune moment to be included in my drawing. I refer to the Orwellian pronouncements from the drones flying over Chinese cities during the Covid lockdowns.
Read them and shiver.
Over it all looms the golem-shaped mushroom cloud of a nuclear strike. A quote by E.L. Doctorow inspired this part of my drawing; "The great golem we have made against our enemies is our culture : its logic, its faith, its vision."
Lets take a look at the massive cogs and tracks grinding the machine over the Earth. Robodogs with sniper guns skitter over the great treads. Their purpose? To protect the great machine from dissenters. Such gun-toting mecha-hounds are actually real. Somebody thought they would be just the thing. Their companion snoop-puppies with their little listening dishes and cute little gun snouts are made up by me but I expect someone will bring them to a street near you in due course.
Deep down in the guts of the tracks are the really nasty stuff. On the left hand edge, visible for a short time before this juggernaut rolls off the page, is 'The Fossil Fuel Industry'. Look carefully and you will notice disgusting gobbets of subsidies flopping into the mechanism to keep it going. A Bird struggles in crude. Next we see the treadmill of a person trapped in pointless work. Militarized police.
A curious cog appears next: 'Pesticides'. Here we see a yellow star, lest we forget why these chemicals were invented in the first place. The dead bird and bee lie either side of a shriveled torso, all that remains of a farmer from India killed by exposure to these toxins.
next we have GCHQ and the Pentagon. Deep in the oubliette between them is Julian Assange. You and I may each represent one grain of sand but Julian has a whole sand castle of grains with a 'Truth' flag set on top.
The only really contented creature in the whole picture will catch your eye next. The white cat on the lap of Klaus Schwab looking like a Bond villain in his pod.
The Da Vinci baby in the womb, the fate planned for us on it's umbilicus, carries our gaze back to the front of the Megamachine where two figures represent all that is wrong with our civilisation. A contemptuous man; handsome, wealthy, well-connected, gazes down at a shriveled child. The poor little soul hangs over the prow of the Megamachine like a precarious figure head. The man says; "I guess it sucks to be you right now."
THE NEXT PIECE
Having a rant is easy. Coming up with a meaningful response is more difficult.
My next art piece will be exploring the idea: "given the situation we find ourselves in, how might we be as human beings?"