“Proletarians, brutalized by the dogma of work, listen to the voice of these philosophers, which has been concealed from you with jealous care: A citizen who gives his labor for money degrades himself to the rank of slaves, he commits a crime which deserves years of imprisonment.” Paul Lafargue, The Right To Be Lazy, 1883.
(Translation as per this site.)
[Re-posted from The Old Site, original dd. 13-12-2008. This post is 3 years old and quotes a text of almost 150 years old. For all of the crying out for change the truth is that everything which is happening and everything being talked about on both left and right is about The Duty To Be Industrious. Too bad, it will cost us another couple of decades before we see the new light. Read to the end of you do have the stomach for it; the language is bad but the twist at the end is nice.]
There you have it: you think you have an original idea just to find out it has been discovered a mere 150 years ago, by a rather obscure pamphlet-writer of rather more than less blackandwhitery, no less. The vice of modesty may still have its virtuous moment 😉
He is right of course, for the same reasons as I was right: neither you nor I whatever our origin and whatever our talents, are really anything more than the instrument of an upper class when we sell ourselves to further the goal of others. Continue reading
“(..) and I thought that I should not do justice to the subject, and bring it fairly under discussion, if I refused to consider any of the consequences which appeared necessary to flow from it, whatever these consequences might be. By pursuing this plan, however, I am aware that I have opened a door to many objections and, probably, to much severity of criticism: but I console myself with the reflection that even the errors into which I may have fallen, by affording a handle to argument, and an additional excitement to examination, may be subservient to the important end, of bringing a subject so nearly connected with the happiness of society into more general notice.” Malthus, An Essay on the Principle of Population, Cambridge University Press (1992) Preface, p.9.
[Re-posted from The Old Site, original dated 03-08-2008. I am happy to report that I have not changed opinion on it, at all. Even though I never meant it in the way that is of recent en vogue now people are looking for new apocalyptical scenario’s to get worked up about in order to be able to condemn the lifestyle of the many.]
It’s probably thé heresy against woolly thinking: “Charity increases misery.”, and, “Helping out is often just a matter of patronizing.” There is a necessary tendency to overpopulation, and overpopulation is always an issue of the poor. The poor stay poor because the rich need an excess of poverty. Just a couple of really inconvenient things in the line of – I do not claim they are Malthus’ point of view nor even that they can all be based on his findings – Malthus.