There are two sets of forces which can be employed in production-human forces and natural forces. The former are supplied by the physical energies of the laborer; the latter by the capital of the employer. These forces cannot be equally employed under all conditions. There are many circumstances under which human labor can be employed in producing wealth where capital cannot. Capital is not an original but an auxiliary force in production. Capital being merely an implement in the hands of man he will only use it when he can obtain his end better with than without it. Consequently, capital will only be continuously employed in production when it can produce wealth cheaper than it can be obtained by human labor. Whenever labor is cheaper as a productive force than capital it will be employed in preference to it, upon the same principle that man endeavors to obtain the maximum result for the minimum effort, and refuses to give something for nothing. Consequently, the employing class becomes an economic factor in the community only in proportion as capital becomes a cheaper productive force than labor.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
Economic and Social Importance of the Eight-Hour Movement
"Capital is not an original but an auxiliary force in production. Capital being merely an implement in the hands of man he will only use it when he can obtain his end better with than without it."