Organized Capital vs. Organized Labor


2016-04-26 – Have you ever given any thought to why the right for workers to organize a union is controversial but the right of investors to form a corporation is not? It’s because labor is not valued in our society but capital is.

The folks who advocate this state of affairs took a dim view of societies that (supposedly) allowed labor to organize but not capital. Those were communist societies. And they failed. But what makes you think that giving legal preference to capital over labor is a better idea? Could it be that that tension between labor and capital is superior to either extreme?

One of the geniuses of the American political system is the idea of checks and balances. We talk about another genius, the system of free enterprise and the economics of supply and demand. But supply and demand is a check-and-balance system. It doesn’t work if there is supply and no demand. Or demand only without supply.

Demand is capital. Labor is supply.

So when we give more and more legal rights to capital and take them from labor, we’re not moving toward some kind of economic heaven. Heaven is in the balance. Take away the balance and it’s hell.

We had more of a balance in the middle of the twentieth century. And people felt prosperous. Beginning in the eighties, we began moving away from that. It hasn’t been good.

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