LEISURE AND LUXURY
Capitalist and manager: The capitalist as such has nothing to do with the management of the industry in which he holds stock. As a capitalist owner of a textile mill he need not know the difference between gingham and worsted. He may be a child or an idiot. If he does useful work in the management of the industry, as capitalists of a generation ago often did, he is to that extent a laborer and is entitled to the rewards of labor. As a matter of fact, he usually gets these rewards over and above his income as a capitalist.
The shrewd business man who so directs an undertaking that it yields an increasing revenue without raising prices or lowering wages is undoubtedly performing a real service for society, and should receive a salary proportionate to that service. But when the gain comes through monopoly, special privilege, injury to the consumer or injury to the producer, society receives no benefit for which it should be called upon to make any payment. The business man who works for himself and against the interests of society deserves no consideration and no reward.
Socialists do not wish to deny to the real captains of industry a reward equivalent to the social value of their share in production, any more than they wish to deny to the least efficient laborer the equivalent of the social value of his share in production. Socialists do charge, however, that even the salaries of those engaged in the management of industry as it is at present conducted are not proportioned to the share of the recipients in production. "To him that hath shall be given" seems to be the rule to-day, as of old. Men who have wealth or influence with the wealthy can obtain positions with salaries far in excess of the value of the services rendered. Capitalism also richly rewards services which are socially undesirable and unnecessary. Brokers,