Nick Cater has coined what I think is a brilliant new expression the ‘laptop class’. This is his vivid and colourful label for those who are glued to their laptops in the same way the less advantaged are glued to their phones. The ‘laptop class’ are often to be seen flying around the world (usually in business class), laptops open, busily writing their next report paper or conference address. They were notable for dominating Cop 26—which probably explains why those climate obsessives carefully avoided addressing one topic: air travel. There was no proposal to limit international flights to half their pre-Covid number or to ban private jets. When they suggest such things we’ll know the ‘laptop class’ is serious about making a personal contribution to cutting carbon dioxide emissions. In the meantime, they just want to pass resolutions that will make life harder for everyone else. At the height of the pandemic Cater pointed out that the ‘laptop class’ was keen on extended, tough lockdowns—which caused them no economic or psychological pain, while inflecting great difficulty on the ‘precariat’ (workers with unsteady incomes). So, congratulations: it’s a brilliant expression which neatly nails down the division in today’s society—the ‘laptop class’.
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