A government-funded conceptual art project/ideal employment opportunity in Gothenburg, Sweden is inviting applications from interested persons for employment to do nothing for the rest of their lives and be paid a very attractive salary.
According to odditycentral.com, the Swedish experimental art project requires the eligible employee to show up at a train station currently under construction in the city every day and punch a time clock. This will turn on a set of fluorescent lights over the boarding platform to let everyone know that the useless employee showed up at work that day. After that, the person is free to do anything they want, or nothing at all, just as long as they return to the station to clock out and turn off the lights when their shift is over. They don’t have to hang around the train station during working hours, and they can quit or be replaced by someone else anytime they want. As long as they don’t get another job, the position is guaranteed for the rest of their lives.
You must be itchy by this time to know how much you are entitled to for doing nothing for the Swedish government.
Reports say whoever will be the lucky candidate to secure the job will be going home with $2,320 (Ghs12,699.91) on a monthly basis.
That’s not all, you are also entitled to annual salary increases, benefits, vacation time and a guaranteed pension fund.
Guess how this job opportunity came about in the first place and how your employers will make money from your employment should you be that lucky employee!
In 2017, Public Art Agency Sweden and the Swedish Transport Administration announced an international competition for artists willing to contribute ideas for the design of Gothenburg’s Korsvagen train station, offering a prize of 7 million Swedish krona (about $750,000) to the winner. Only instead of coming up with actual design ideas, Swedish artist duo Simon Goldin and Jakob Senneby suggested that the prize money be used to pay one worker’s salary and give them absolutely nothing to do all day. And that’s how their “Eternal Employment” project began, odditycentral.com reports.
The news website added that two artists even came up with a plan to ensure that the prize money would be enough to pay the useless employee for “eternity”, which in this case means 120 years. By setting up a foundation to prevent the prize money from being taxed and then investing it in an equity fund, they came to the conclusion that there was a 75% chance that they’d be able to pay a $2,312 monthly wage, plus an annual salary increase of 3.2 percent, for 120 years or more.
After a careful scrutiny, the artists’ project was announced as the winner in October of last year, which triggered backlash from opposition politicians who said the government was wasting taxpayers’ money.
Brian Kuan Wood, a board member for the Eternal Employment foundation is quoted as saying: “Old Social Democrats accused them of using financial realism to mock the transcendental accomplishments of the welfare state. Neoliberal ‘progressives’ accused them of wasting taxpayers’ money to stage a nostalgic return to that same welfare state.”
Inasmuch as this job seems attractive, the unfortunate thing is that it will only be available in the year 2026, after the station is inaugurated. The artists will start taking in applications a year earlier, reports say.
Critics have referred to the eternal job as stupid and useless, due to the fact that “whatever the employee chooses to do constitutes the work”, and he or she is entitled to huge benefits for life, while their service will not generate any revenue.
Meanwhile, the artists’ whose brainchild is this whole eternal employment for nothing say the whole concept is to pay someone for doing nothing for the rest of his or her life.