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The Rationale Quest – Politics, Economics and Philosophy Explore the latent response of philosophy and philosophy to the global economic arena. Early posts include the study of heresies in the early church and the problems of Liberalism and Raw Capitalism in our times
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Workers are – commoditized – in global arenaFebruary 23rd 2009 21:04
By Ray Tapajna, Editor and Artist at Tapart News and Art that Talks see mobile user friendly summary of articles
Free Trade and Globalization have “commoditised” workers. Have workers become the “stepchildren” of philosophy and religion ?
Workers Dignity is challenged in the global economy with philosophy and religion seemingly standing on the side lines and just watching the degradation of the value of workers in more ways than one. Workers have been put on a global block to compete with one another for the same jobs down to the levels of wage slave and even child labor. It is not only an economic problem but also a religious and philosophical one too.
As we noted at Bizarre Politics , the value of workers and labor in economics is a real tangible one and acts as a real money standard since the money standard of paper money is based on the makeup of a whole society or nation. Labor represents a major part of it. So it is nonsensical to discount this value and expect the value of paper money not to degrade in the process. The old money standard was based on gold but gold proved to be too much of a powerful static value for the investment community with all their speculative money products. The gold standard was switched to just printing images on paper and calling it money. To add a money value to it, all kinds of speculative money games are played while the most important part is ignored – the value of workers and labor.
In reference to the common good, workers and labor are the essence of it. Even Adam Smith held workers and labor as something sacred and the core of society. All economic life should set upom the priorities of ” the least among us” . The Free Enterprise system should fill this need and in turn make it easier for all people to be good . However, the Free Enterprise system has been smashed by the Free Market in an anything goes environment.
Consumers are also responsible. If you asked people as consumers, what they think about companies that sell under cost just to take markets away from other companies who do not have enough capital to sell their products under costs for a long time. They will usually give you a blank look. The victor will always be the company with the most money. When asked about this, some say it is none of their business of how a company can sell goods under costs. However, Christians and all people with good will should know better and do something about it. They should ask about the conditions behind the bargains they search for knowing “lost leader” economies to not work and nor to they satisfied the common good.
1. First of all, we should all act on the principle that an economy exists for the common good.
2. Labor is not a tool of capitalism but capitalism should be the tool of all for a better life. Neither Communism or unbridled Capitalism work.
3. All our economic choices should be judged according to human dignity and the way to enhance it and not degrade it.
4. All in society have the right to secure productive work, just wages, benefits and decent working conditions. When workers are displaced, there has to be institutions ready to fill in the voids. The term underemployment was used quite a bit in the past but has lost its meaning in our economy. Only 37 per cent of all American workers qualify for unemployment insurance. The majority do not make enough money in any given period or have a job long enough to qualify. Part-time jobs , temporary jobs , contract labor , leased jobs and casual casual labor positions have taken over. Hardly no one asks where and what are the workers doing who do not qualify for unemployment insurance. There is no data about this void in our economy.
5. Everyone has the right to make enough money to have a family and have enough left over to support the broader society and those who fall through the cracks in any economy.
6. This should all happen in vibrant human dynamic environment where a level playing field is guaranteed. Big money and big government has distorted this just need. Those who control the Free Market should know that the degradation of the value of workers and labor impacts their money and investments too. They should know that any attack on the common good is an attack on all in a society.
I was actually told that the children in India are happy to get the jobs that pay pennies a day to help support their families. Is this what the Free Market is all about ? Do we live off the suffering of children like this across the globe ? Apparently, we do.
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