Monday, February 2, 2015

In 1776, Adam Smith Knew Inequality Wrong

The fight for a living wage goes on. On March 18, 1968, days before his murder, Martin Luther King Jr, told striking workers it is criminal to have people working on a full-time basis and getting part-time income. King is remembered as the outstanding leader of the Civil Rights movement before his assassination had moved to arguing that just wages were essential for a just society. King considered poverty wages not only immoral, but also criminal. In fact, even Adam Smith, one of the fathers of capitalism, believed workers should earn wages that must at least be sufficient to maintain the worker otherwise it would be impossible for them to bring up their families. During Smith’s day it was assumed that children should have a parent at home—mother to care for them. Smith, a Scottish philosopher in the 1770-80s and is deemed the "father of modern economics," seemed also to ponder the meaning of subsistent and low wages that ought to allow credible people who are working in the nation’s jobs to live according to the customs of the country in which they live. Smith considered it indecent to be paid wages that render the toilers unable to participate in the country’s customs because they cannot purchase the most basic commodities of life. Low wages is the fastest way to kill capitalism, and he saw this way back then. This is from one of the fathers of capitalism, who knew that the toilers are also the spenders, who are 67 percent drivers of the capitalist system. Spending creates jobs and wealth, sitting on piles of cash doesn’t. Invest in paper or the Stock Market will eventually bust because there will be no product or durable goods made because there will be no money in the pockets of the toilers. So all countries must even up the inequality and here is the U.S. the lowest paid wages must be at least $15 to $18 an hour. Every person can and must when there is an opportunity. I had my chance with a yes vote at a board meeting to start toward $15 an hour for workers. We are starting at $12 an hour and will do an additional $1 for the next two years or maybe quicker if possible. It all counts even slow walking the wages.