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In honour of Labour Day,

September 5, 2011

links to two commentaries from our cousins to the south:

The blood and sweat behind Labor Day,” Kenneth Davis, Special to CNN (Sept. 2/11):

[I]t is worth recalling President Abraham Lincoln’s words during the dark early days of the real Civil War. “Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed,” he told Congress in December 1861. “Labor is the superior of capital and deserves much the higher consideration.”

The last Labor Day?” E.J. Dionne Jr., The Washington Post  (Sept. 4/11):

[I]t would take a brave man to point out that unions “grew up from the struggle of the workers — workers in general but especially the industrial workers — to protect their just rights vis-a-vis the entrepreneurs and the owners of the means of production,” or to insist that “the experience of history teaches that organizations of this type are an indispensable element of social life.”

That’s what Pope John Paul II said (the italics are his) in the 1981 encyclical “Laborem Exercens.” Like Lincoln, John Paul repeatedly asserted “the priority of labor over capital.”


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