So the socialist story goes, employees are being exploited by employers because they have to work or starve. Yeah right. Paul Marks properly debunks this rhetoric, as defended by incoherent "anarchist" Kevin Carson (Cám ơn, Samizdata).
But let's examine what the socialist theory predicts. According to Lassalle's "iron law of wages", employers pay the minimum needed for survival and workers never rise above the limit of starvation — and thus socialists claim that only the government-mandated minimum wage helps the poor workers. OK. Then how come some wage earners earn more, sometimes much more, than this decreed minimum wage? Weird isn't it? If government is the only cause for employee wealth, why would any employer ever bother to pay anyone more than the minimum? If there are other forces at play, what are they?
The socialist argument is only a one-sided consideration of the competition between employees that keeps their salary low. But they forget to consider that competition between employers keeps the salaries high. The balance between the two is called the market price. The socialist "solution" is to reduce the competition between employers through regulations, taxes, confiscations and state monopolies. And the inevitable outcome is that actual wages lower through this combined reduced competition and overall destruction.
But let's take competition between employers seriously. If a given worker chooses an employer over another one, clearly, it is because this employer offers him the best deal the worker can find. The deal may suck badly — it is the best. And so, if the actual employer is to be blamed — how much more to be blamed are the other potential employers, who proposed even worse deals? In the job market, the actual employer proved to be the worker's best friend. And you want to punish him for that, through taxes and corvées? Yeah right. Why not punish all the other employers instead? And why not punish all those non-employers who didn't even have a job to offer? Or the worker himself for being a burden to others to begin with? The socialists claim that the employer saves the workers from starvation — if that were true, then he should be honored as a life-saver, not fought as an enemy. Sure it's bad to work just for food, but the alternative of starvation is much worse — and that's what happens when there is noone left to offer this above-starvation wage. And note how rich workers are in the countries that are least burdened by taxation and regulation... how come workers have nice clothes, good food, cars, fridges, computers, holidays?
Will killing or robbing the employer help the poor? Replacing him with a socialist bureaucrat in the name of the worker will certainly help the ruling socialist bureaucrat who becomes the new employer, now with a state monopoly. As for the worker, he still has an employer, under another name. But now it's a monopoly employer who owes his title to force rather than persuasion, an employer who faces no competition. One that claims to be a friend, but destroys the former best friend and the freedom of choosing this friend (for competition between employers is nothing else but freedom for employees to choose between employers).
Socialists are not the friends of the working poor, but their worst enemies. They are slavers. They enslave the rich and the poor alike, by force and by fraud.