Capitalism is a stool with three legs

Capital. Resources. Labor. Remove any one of those, and you do not have an economy. 

“If any man tells you he loves America, yet hates labor, he is a liar.”

–  Abraham Lincoln

h/t The Back Channel Blog

14 responses to “Capitalism is a stool with three legs

  1. I’m glad your “un-bloggy” days were brief.


  2. Ah…You get hooked…..

    The blogging is like an addiction…..


  3. Pingback: Capitalism is a stool with three legs…Whatever Works… - Politicaldog101.Com

  4. I see Capitalism more like a stool turned upside down. The working class sit there.


  5. Ms. Holland,

    Your post is the 3 legs of capitalism . Capital , Resources, Labor . Yet your President Lincoln quote ” If any man tells you he loves America, yet hates labor, he is a liar.” deals only with Labor . Does that mean you feel Lincoln was anti business, anti capitalism, pro big government in the private sector ?

    Was Lincoln a Progressive ?


    • Lincoln – I’d love to hear his voice. And what he said? Yes, it dealt only with labor and I posted it because it’s pretty much the subject of the week here in the old US of A. Nobody is talking about capital or resources. Labor is the hot ticket this week!


  6. Capital. Resources. Labor.

    There’s no reason capitalism shouldn’t be an innately very good system. No reason, that is, when Smith’s “invisible hand” isn’t cuffed by those with the capital. If Goldman Sachs, the Koch brothers, and a handful of other infinitely corrupt entities were prevented from propagandizing the willfully ignorant in the form of right wing radio and Fox “News,” if large corporations didn’t routinely muscle out the competition, and if the purchase of legislation hadn’t become the modus operandi of the grifter class, capitalism would be the most efficient economic system in the world.


    • Capitalism as practiced today in America-the-Corporate is increasingly the destructive version you get when there is no regulation. Even Adam Smith I understand was quite clear that capitalism, if unregulated, would become a force for ill.


  7. Ms. Holland,

    I have been tried to find what speech your quote came from so that I could get the context, but I failed .

    I know that Lincoln, in the decades before his Presidency, engaged in debates with Southern Democrats over the economics of slavery verses ” free labor “. I do not believe that your quote applies to modern day events very well .

    From the 1830s on, Lincoln was a Whig. When the Whigs died out in the 1850s, the remnants along with the know nothings and the free soilers formed the Republican Party . You would be happy to know that the Whigs were big government funded infrastructure guys , which in them days meant railroads .

    Anyway,,,,,,,, ” free labor ” to Lincoln did not mean ” big labor “. Free labor to Lincoln meant economic mobility . Lincoln hated the hard labor he endured on his father’s farm. He viewed his difference with black slaves on plantations as, he could work his way out using his labor to better himself, while they were doomed to a life of hard labor . He said, ” I used to be slave, and now I am so free that they let me practice law . ”

    Lincoln was mainly a business lawyer . He did mostly debt collections and breech of contract suits . Lincoln and the Whigs were the party of Northern businessmen and like today’s Republicans were falsely branded as the party of the rich, while the Southern Democrats branded themselves as coon skinned frontiersmen and poor farmers. Like today’s rich Democrats, the truth was more that Southern Democrats were the party of rich slave holding plantation owners .

    Comparing the Wisconsin unionized workers to slaves or to Lincoln’s ideas about free labor is akin to comparing their demonstrations to those in Egypt.


  8. Ms. Holland,

    But this is what Abraham Lincoln was talking about . You are using a quote out of context to promote organized labor . Lincoln was not about organized labor, just labor . I can’t absolutely prove you wrong but, I strongly doubt you are right . Again Lincoln was about the power of labor within the capitalist system to allow class mobility . This was long before union labor usurped the title of labor .

    Even FDR was against union organizing within government because union bosses could give money to politicians who later gave them sweetheart contracts. With $ Billions in unfunded pension obligations now haunting the states, I would say old Franklin had this one right .


    • Dude, you are nitpicking Moe. I have never seen such a nitpick who could take exception to not only things that were said, but things that were not said.

      For example, just because of the quote from Lincoln concerning labor and only labor, you deduced that Moe was anti-business, statist, and socialist. I am not trying to take up for anyone, but…

      I think you are ridiculous.


    • [You are using a quote out of context to promote organized labor ]

      There wasn’t organized labor in Lincoln’s day so you are correct – I think he was referencing the dignity of labor. There have always and still are forces in this country who will actively work to keep working people down. There are, conversely, forces who will try to lift working people up.

      I am not without sympathy for what the states are going through and I’m no fan of the teachers unions. However, I beleive in the rights of labor and as long as forces are arrayed against workers, the unions are the most effective way to fight back.


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