Let's not forget, we have the labor movements to thank for much of the benefits we have today. The 40-hour work week, the minimum wage, family leave, health insurance, Social Security, Medicare, retirement plans, and holidays are all born from advancements in labor. Technology plays a role as well. As our technology continues to improve, so must our benefits and quality of life.
Eugene Debs, one of the leaders of the labor movement in America, opposed "a social order in which it is possible for one man who does absolutely nothing that is useful to amass a fortune of hundreds of millions of dollars, while millions of men and women who work all the days of their lives secure barely enough for a wretched existence." These words reflect the state of affairs back then and still today to even more extreme.
We all have the same basic needs. Working continuously for food, water, healthcare, and shelter when we have the technology and resources to give everyone a better life amounts to economic slavery so a few can live with excessive wealth at the expense of most that live without much of anything. Sharing the artificial resources openly and the natural resources that we all have as a birthright is a step towards equity and justice in labor.
Once realized that we are all on the same team, that no one builds anything without the help of nature and neighbors, that we build upon the work of others in one way or another, and that our actions affect other people as well as the environment in which we live, then community, empathetic compassion, and conscious evolution can become stronger foundation principles.
Happy Labor Day and soon we will realize that we are all on this planet together and end all of the exploitation to make a better world for ourselves and our children.
"Capital is a result of labor, and is used by labor to assist it in further production. Labor is the active and initial force, and labor is therefore the employer of capital." —Henry George
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