The inflation of labor.

Monday, August 30th, 2010 @ 9:36 pm | Politics

Remember when labor won the right to a 40-hour work week? And how that work week could sustain a family? After decades of dual-earning households, each family is contributing 80 instead of 40, and that’s presuming they aren’t salaried employees expected to spend most of their waking hours “fighting for the team.” At the same time, costs for most basic goods and services have risen so dramatically that things like a home and health care have become golden chalices of achievement. And sometimes, even that second income won’t help you out much. Throw in child care costs, and each parent better be making $40K+ to hope to pull ahead by $10K. Little Whistler is due in November, and little Whistler’s mother isn’t sure returning to her job is going to be worth it at all.


p.s. I eagerly await the first winger who comes in babbling about how our biggest problem is taxes, during this historically low tax era. If somebody bites, by all means begin by explaining why Bush’s massive tax cuts left us with a broken economy and skyrocketing deficits before Obama was elected (to fix what Bush broke).

One Response to “The inflation of labor.”

  1. Dana Says:

    Actually, it isn’t taxes at all, but the law of supply and demand. Back when a working man could support a family by himself, he had to be paid enough to do just that, or he’d have to look for another job. But once women and blacks were allowed to compete for jobs once pretty much reserved for white men, you had a huge increase in the available labor supply vis a vis the demand. In effect, we more than doubled the size of the labor pool in just a few years.

    More, as women joined the labor force, it was no longer necessary to pay a man enough to support a family; if he couldn’t earn that much, why his wife could always go to work!