Labor

830 – “The United States can not hope to make a prosperous living without a strong manufacturing sector. The broader point, however, is that a nation must deliberately and constantly invest in its means of making a living. Nations that ‘[let] the free market decide’ what they should do for a living decline to the bottom of the economic food chain.”

–Demond Drummer

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829 – Grover Cleveland on Labor and Business

“A truly American sentiment recognizes the dignity of labor and the fact that honor lies in honest toil. Contented labor is an element of national prosperity. Ability to work constitutes the capital and the wage of labor the income of a vast number of our population, and this interest should be jealously protected. Our workingmen are not asking unreasonable indulgence, but as intelligent and manly citizens they seek the same consideration which those demand who have other interests at stake. They should receive their full share of the care and attention of those who make and execute the laws, to the end that the wants and needs of the employers and the employed shall alike be subserved and the prosperity of the country, the common heritage of both, be advanced.”

–Grover Cleveland, 22nd and 24th President of the United States of America

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302 – “It’s important to understand CEOs are not job creators. Nor are the rich. Nor are corporations. The job creators are the Middle Class and the Poor, whose purchases create jobs. If the Middle Class and Poor aren’t paid enough, job creation slows. Which is why a higher minimum wage creates jobs.”

–Robert Reich, 22nd United States Secretary of Labor
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275 – “It is intolerable and indecent for a society to produce by overworking and underpaying human beings. Even if the product may cost more we in this country eventually accept the difference in cost because it is the man that counts – not the thing.”

–James Mitchell, 8th United States Secretary of Labor (1953-1961)
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235 – Lincoln’s Understanding of the Hired Laborer

“My understanding of the hired laborer is this: A young man finds himself of an age to be dismissed from parental control; he has for his capital nothing, save two strong hands that God has given him, a heart willing to labor, and a freedom to choose the mode of his work and the manner of his employer; he has got no soil nor shop, and he avails himself of the opportunity of hiring himself to some man who has capital to pay him a fair day’s wages for a fair day’s work. He is benefited by availing himself of that privilege. He works industriously, he behaves soberly, and the result of a year or two’s labor is a surplus of capital. Now he buys land on his own hook; he settles, marries, begets sons and daughters, and in the course of time he too has enough capital to hire some new beginners.”

-Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of the United States of America

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234 – Relation Between Labor and Capital Quote

“That there is a certain relation between capital and labor, I admit. That it does exist, and rightfully exists, I think it true. That men who are industrious, and sober, and honest in the pursuit of their own interests should after a while accumulate capital, and after that should be allowed to enjoy it in peace, and also, if they so choose, when they have accumulated it, to use it to save themselves from actual labor, and hire other people to labor for them, is right. In doing so they do not wrong the man they employ, for they find men who have not their own land to work upon, or shops to work in, and who are benefited by working for others, hired laborers, receiving their capital for it. Thus a few men, that own capital, hire a few others, and these establish he relation of capital and labor rightfully.”

-Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of the United States of America

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