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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 4

Labor must be Better Paid

Labor must be Better Paid.

In order both to sell and to purchase with increased activity, human labor must be better paid. It is the only way to create large and stable markets. While human labor is better paid, automatic machine labor will cost less and less, as it is perfected by discovery and invention.

A hundred horse-power engine, under the direction of five or six men, with automatic machinery, may accomplish in one day the hand labor of five or six thousand, and although the wages, fuel, and other requirements may be largely increased, yet with all this increase averaged over the large production, as machinery is improved and perfected, its cost will be constantly diminished. In this way, while human labor will advance, machinery will nevertheless cheapen production.

It is true, invention will supplant human labor more and more, but still the constant expansion of consumption will give full scope to the faculties of man in newer and wider avenues. A large remuneration will increase his ability to purchase these cheapened products of machinery, and so the comforts, refinements, and embellishments of a higher civilization will be widely diffused, and down-trodden humanity will be more and more elevated.