Labor's Challenge to the Social Order: Democracy Its Own Critic and Educator

Labor's Challenge to the Social Order: Democracy Its Own Critic and Educator

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Labor's Challenge to the Social Order: Democracy Its Own Critic and Educator

Labor's Challenge to the Social Order: Democracy Its Own Critic and Educator

Read FREE!

Excerpt

Before the war was half spent, it had become clear that at its close we were to be tangled among forces so intricate as to call for a higher and more flexible intelligence than did the war itself. This is now a certainty. The task is not merely the rearranging of the world map and trade accommodation among the nations; it is quite as much our own domestic re-fitting. No people on the desolated areas will escape. That these trials are first of all economic and concern present property relations indicates plainly the forces of resistance which the new order will encounter.

For what is called "our standard of living" men and women in every class will struggle to desperation. This standard is based largely upon money income, but it gathers about it those sentimental values;-- social position and prestige (or the promise of such) which feed the subtlest and most sensitive of human vanities and ambitions. To maintain and to win this "standard" is the tap-root of those hectoring labor demands which so smell to heaven in the nostrils of the employing and capitalist classes.

Yet in this striving to keep and to improve their position, wage folks are only imitating those with higher incomes.

This labor, however, will have one advantage in the coming contest. Its more meager and precarious earnings will shield it from certain leveling forms of taxation which more conspicuous possessions cannot escape. It is certain that labor with its new alliances is to secure immeasurably . . .

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