I hope you're well prepared for the Hive fork. I'd hate to lose this content after Friday. I do read it and find it thought provoking daily.
"The centralized office, it says, did not emerge until the 1960s when it was ushered into existence by centralized forces like governments and large, traditional companies."
Not until the industrial revolution did factory jobs really begin. That was the impetus for public school as well, in order to free parents from childcare duties, and blunt criticism of industry for trying to turn children into factory workers.
Until the 17th Century, people had always grown most of their own food, kept a few animals for their family's use, and had a trade they undertook from home and passed on to their kids. It was a terrible social upheaval that featured the destruction of the economy of traditional crafts when the financial overlords undertook to force such independent people to become employees in factories, as you can imagine.
The advent of 3D printing and similar decentralized means of production has begun enabling the restoration of independent home based manufacture of state of the art goods in the last couple decades, and development rapidly extends the capabilities of distributed means of production today. This has been a threat to centralized capital mostly not apparent to folks who've been through public schools and considered employment by companies the standard economic mechanism.
Today, folks with 3D printers and supplies of feedstock are very much in enviable positions, given the collapse of supply chains since the onset of global pandemic shut them down. Additional means of production still available to folks intent on independence from centralized industry and capital include aquaponics and other home food production, CRISPR, which enables crafting bespoke yeasts and bacteria to produce specific substances, such as medications, and various CNC and CAM mechanisms, as well as solar and other means of individually suitable energy supply.
The centralization of society is indeed a recent phenomenon, and has provided a very small class of overlords extraordinary wealth and power because centralization is a form of parasitism, that sucks from the flow of economic production of society to feed the pools of capital necessary to funding large manufacturing plants necessary to make computers or jet airplanes.
For most goods, however, such massive factories aren't necessary given 3D printers and suitable feedstocks. While the financial cost of making a light switch plate cover may be actually less if a massive factory avails economy of scale than a homeowner printing one off, the various social and other costs associated with actually getting such a good mounted where it's needed more than exceed the financial cost difference.
I have long realized that decentralized means of production, when developed and distributed sufficiently, doom the overlords who depend on parasitizing society for their wealth and power.
While this tragic pandemic may be just the means such overlords need to impose their parasitic blood funnels on us with police states and gangs of thugs, it is also a potential watershed for folks seeking a return to the prehistoric and historic legacy of independent producers of bespoke goods that has been the norm for almost the entire duration of our species.