A few months back I reported on the movement of leftists to repeal or at least pare back child labor laws worldwide. Hostility to child labor is understood by these people to be eurocentric, patriarchical and aligned with the labor market needs of modern capitalism—and therefore wrong. Instead we are encouraged to support working children, and what these children tell us is they want to work. So away with the restrictive laws.
But you don’t have to be on the left to endorse more child labor. Here’s Joseph Sunde of the hard-conservative Acton Institute with a similar message. Note the emphasis on the psychological benefits children are supposed to get from being productive; this is the same argument made by the left. Similarly, the benefits of child work as a preparation for adult life figure strongly on both wings.
I’m reminded of the affection for Hayek shown by Foucault in his final years.