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Labor And Capital

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Labor is the souroe of all wealth. The savage ubtains the means of living by huuting and iishiug, barbarous people, like the wandeling Tartare, by their üocks and herds, the oivilized nations by agriculture and the various industries oonneoted with it. The agriculturist raises the raw materinl. The inanufacturer, the inechauic, and artizan fashion it into articles of use, couvenience, and ornament. The meruhant and trader divide and distribute the same among individuals. In all these cases labor enters into and constitutes their value. Utility is one thing, value another. Utility is the product of the laws of nature, value of the labor of man. The air we breathe is of indispensable utility but of no mercantile value. Iron is of greater utility thau gold, but of far Ies8 value. The price an article brings in umrltet is lts value, toe neceasity and convenience of an article constitutes its use. Physical labor consista siuiply in moving things. Tbe laws of nature do not rest. The farmer moves the aoil, and the seed into it. Heat and nioisture cauae it to genérate and grow. He cultivates by moving the aoil about it and a erop is the result. The tailor inovea hia aheara through the cloth, then hia needies and the result ia a coat. Phy8ical labor then is only an effort by which.materials or iruplements are moved with reference to a given result. Nature furnishes all the materials and laws and co-operates at every atep. It is economy to make her carry all the work she can. As motion is the only thing required of man to labor, he early called to hia aid the ox and horse. In modern times he has called to his aid the wonderful power of ateain. Thia was formerly opposed because it would diminish the value of horses. Experience has shown the iallacy of thia view. More labor is performed and the value of horaes has increased. Since the introduotiou of steaia power. A similar beneficial effect upon labor has been produced by inoreasing its value by the inventiou and iinprovement of all kinds of machinery for either agricultural or mechanical purposes. All this motor power, whether trom animal or steani, is but supple mental to the motions produced by the human arm. But no power, however niighty or instrument however delicate, can dispense with some amount of human labor, trom the simple fact that the.efi'orts of mind are rtquired in directing its oparations. There are three requisites for material productiou, labor, power-agents, and capital. Besides the great law of supply and demand there are several subordinafe considerations which vary the wages of labor, as the agreeableness or disagreeableness of the employment, the easiness and cheapness or difficulty and expsiise of leurning different employments, the oonstancy of employment, the amount of trust involved, aud the probability of success. All valué is the result of two causes, desires and efforts ; the laborer desires to work for nioney or some other article, the other person desires the work ot the laborer, and is willing to pay money or souie other article for it. The presence of capital constitutes a demand for labor. Capital is any product reseved to be employed in future production. It stimulates labor and paya for ít. A man who has $1,000 which he does not spend for personal gratification but rereserves to pay for labor or buys with it a inacbiue for the production of articles has capital. Capitalista are interested in profits and laborers in wages. Is there any antagouism between them 't ïhere can be none because labor alone workg up the raw mateiial, and disposes of the products. Capital without labor, gives no profit, and may, as in the oase of the idle mili, begrowing less. Capital must have laborers and these must have enjployinent that gives them pay. They exchange to the uiutual advantage of both. Capitalists and laborers are necessary to each other, and one olass are as independent as the other. Each olass is bettered by the prosperity of the other. The increa8e of capital is bueficial to a community, but it causes the rate of interest to diminish. All history shows that the rate per cent. of profits, go down as a country grows older and richer. In England the rate of interest three centuries ago was ten per cent. Now it is four. In the first stages of the miuing operations in California, interest was often 10 per cent, a moutb. Now it is about the same there as in the States along the Mississippi. There is a constant tendeucy in these to assimulate to the rates in the Eastern States. Iraproved intolligence and skill in the workman like improvements in rnachinery, increase ptoduction, and thus eni ploy and benefit capital. Thus we see that rightly understood, there is no grab game between capital and labor. What in jures the one injures the other, and what benefits the ono will in the end benefit the other. We have another proof of the inherent dignity of labor from the fact that with increasing civilization the value of labor, especially of intelligent labor, increases. This is not only true as it is compared with capital, but with the products of the earth and articles luunufaotured. This illustrates the Divine command that man by the swcat of his brow should gain his bread, and the further tact that so far au mui is concernid, labor, intelligent labor of the hand or the head or both coiiibiued, Controls and governs the world. P. L. P. Eecenllt at Westiuinster abbey, on a soleuin occasion, an Oxford professor told the great asseuibly that the only part of all religions that is imperishable, and that will outlive all question and oontroversy whatever, is this - "Thou shalt love thy Maker with all thy heart, and love and serve thy neighbor as thyself." This is the religión on which schools and churehes should bo founded, and in a future day they will be so founded. As the snow and ice uielt at the glance and breath of spring, so this chaiuing up the human mind to formulas that cannot be believed, as the only mode of salvation, is gradually melting away.


Old News
Michigan Argus