In the world as we knew it, Premier League soccer players earned €3m a year on average and a shelf-stacker in a supermarkets got around €15,000.
Today, shelf-stackers seem more valuable than soccer stars.
The Covid-19 pandemic is deeply unsettling, anxiety-provoking, even depressing as across the world even people whose health is unaffected become increasingly isolated from each other.
Understandably, people hope for a return to normality.
But is normality as we knew it really worth going back to?
The economic fallout from Covid-19 has lifted the lid and shown some sectors of the economy are not really necessary - and may even be harmful.
This month in Ireland the Airbnb-style, short-term holiday rental market has collapsed, but the result has been to make homes more affordable.
It turns out scarcity of accommodation wasn't a problem the market was solving, the scarcity of rooms was being created by the economy.
At the moment, government interventions here and elsewhere are two-pronged: public health measures to slow the spread of the virus - the now famous call to 'flatten the curve' - and economic measures to cope with the resulting instantaneous unemployment for many workers, collapse in tourism and hospitality, weak consumption and demand.
National governments are supporting people with emergency welfare payments, wage supplements and mortgage relief.
The European Central Bank is providing funds to borrow, to keep health and education running.
Even the USA is distributing money to all citizens, an example which Europe should follow.
The guiding idea is to pause the economy to preserve it, so that when the pandemic abates, we can get back to "business as usual".
But what if we reorganised rather than rebooted the economy?
After all, we are seeing how shorter working weeks are more productive, how guaranteed access to welfare payments makes unemployment more bearable.
Housing markets can be regulated. Health services can be fully funded and functional.
The need to be "internationally competitive" is often mentioned as a reason not to try radical measures. Salary caps and high minimum wages work in Japan and Scandinavia.
In the face of global warming and pandemic disruptions, the world cannot afford "business as usual".
What if instead we agree the economy as it existed in 2019 was unjust and unsustainable?
Since China's lockdown, whole clouds of smog cleared, and the carbon-footprint of everyone under curfew was reduced to nothing more than their food-miles.
More lives are being saved by the reduction in air-pollution than lost to Covid-19.
But perhaps what the response to the pandemic really demonstrates is that a huge amount of economic activity is simply unnecessary.
Schoolbooks define economics as the study of the allocation of scarce resources. But what if scarcity is not a real problem? There is enough food, shelter and warmth.
The problem is how resources are shared out - the Irish rental market has just proved that.
Scarcity was once the nightmare of over-population or famine; today, it exists because some people take more resources than they need.
This inverts the text-book definition: the economy is the restriction of abundant resources - allocated unequally by the market and overseen by the State.
When politicians and experts talk about the terrible hit to the economy, they mean the system where many people have to do jobs which are unnecessary to anyone's survival or indeed their happiness, so that others can invest their cash to generate profits to keep the same ball rolling endlessly.
Meanwhile, most of us spend money on things we don't need - which creates more jobs, and more pollution.
Those who do well under the current system tend to think they deserve their good fortune - the economy has efficiently allocated them a six-figure income, maybe seven figures or even nine.
Yet overall, "normality" was unfair and unsustainable.
Clearly, the economy keeps people working and active, but as Covid-19 proves, it also generates a large amount of busy work which we are now seeing could be done without.
Businesses large and small are shut because we accept in the short term that people can do without the goods or services they provide.
Should we accept more of that in the longer term?
That's not to minimise the pain of what is happening right now. Closure will lead to losses and even bankruptcy.
Unemployment is tremendously difficult, provoking anxiety, debts and poverty, and contemporary welfare services often push people into precarious work.
But the pandemic proves resources are not so scarce; we can create a sustainable economy where work is reorganised so that both free-time and the necessities of life are abundant for everyone.