To Salaries (first letter)

I’d considered you an early gain of upward mobility — the primary reward of transitioning from wage labor to managerial lackey-dom (panoptically surveiled by “owners”, “rentiers” and corporate-type entities).
You’ve represented more money for less work, less time and less specific or verifiable results, profits, tasks, functions etc. You might allow for a much more satisfying (albeit fragmentary) illusion of autonomy in relation to the relentlessly occult-like interdependencies of a totalizing economic order.
A friend talked to me about all of this after I got one of you. She said that, yes, I was getting paid a lot more than I’d ever been paid before, despite working a lot less, and that this gain has remained without any direct supervision or provision of objectively quantifiable evidence of my efforts — but that all of this excess was a kind of “just reward” for my independence of thought and the responsibilities that came with it. I was being equitably “acknowledged” for having to operate on my own and make decisions.
Most people, she said, aren’t capable of it.
There are times when my so-called intellectual labor has seemed excruciatingly difficult to realize. I was tempted to nod my head in agreement with her but just couldn’t do it in the end. I’ve known from experience that to get the job done, to execute, one must, more often than not, stop thinking, stop feeling. This is where the difficulty lies. One must disassociate from one’s own being in the world, from what some might call being human, in order to be an effective instrument of external forces.
It’s not as though most people are incapable of obtaining you because they are irresponsible and/or stupid. The vast majority are too sensitive, astute and observant. They are concretely aware of the power relations enmeshing their lives.
They can’t stop thinking, feeling, comprehending and acknowledging what is actually going on around them.  They empathize with those less fortunate. They do what they must to endure, to remain themselves, to possess the living they have left.