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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 4

Millions Lost by Idleness

Millions Lost by Idleness.

As it stands to-day, there is a sad lack of opportunity. With the exhaustless productiveness of the earth to mine, to cultivate, to explore, the channels of industry are everywhere blocked and gorged, and the hand of labor is palsied. The earth teems with raw material, awaiting the magic transformation of man's energies; but labor stands idle in the market-places, and capital lies piled up uselessly in banks. Millions of men are either in enforced idleness, or are unprofitably employed.

The waste of productive energy may be counted by the daily loss of millions of dollars, and yet all this is but an atom in comparison to the miseries of the people, the shipwreck of human life, and the general demoralization from enforced idleness.

Want of employment leads to discouragement, hopelessness, and despair. It overflows almshouses, charitable institutions, prison-houses, and penitentiaries. It degrades manhood. It ruins families. Misery, crime, and suicide follow in its wake. It supplies ready victims for the gallows.