Ford announced the five dollar day one hundred years ago today. See http://web.bryant.edu/~ehu/h364proj/summ_99/armoush/page3.html
That's $5 more than I earned today. Too cold to drive over to the shop.
We need Henry Ford and James Couzens all over again.
I thought about asking my employer to do like Henry Ford. I'm sure they would be glad to pay me $5.00 a day.
Henry Ford did not do this $5 a Day out of the goodness of his heart. You need to remember, almost all the factory workers lived in Henry Ford Company towns. Towns that Henry owned all the stores, meat markets, general stores, gas stations, housing ect. It gave his workers more money to spend in a closed profit making enterprise, Ford Towns. It is true it gave the workers more money, but Henry pretty much controlled where they would spend it. Ford also used it as free advertisement. I like the Model T, but I disagree with Henry Fords way of doing business.
I guess i never have thought as Detroit as a Henry Ford Town??One thing about the Ford meat market's,if you burned out a rod bearing you could fix it with genuine Ford bacon rind.
There were strings attached to that $5 day. You only got the other $1, like a bonus, if you worked all year, didn't take unauthorized sick time and showed up for work every day, on time, etc.
About 20 years ago, one early Ford worker in his late 90s with a clear mind told me that he did not get another pay raise until 1933 and he was a supervisor.
When you worked for Ford 'you owed the company store' in a roundabout way.
But then again I always thought you were expected to come to work every day and come to work ON TIME.
I always did that and didn't know anything about Henry Ford's work system.
There are always those people who are always late, call in sick a lot and come up with all kind of excuses to have to be off. In this day and time there are more people that way than in Fords day.
Maybe Fords work system scared those folks who fit in the above category.
$5 a day times 4 days = $20. In 1914 that was a $20 gold piece...one ounce of gold. Today, one ounce of gold for 4 days work comes to about $300 a day, or just over $37 an hour.
Imagine paying semi-skilled folks $37 an hour these days. I know degreed engineers that don't make that kind of money. Consider also, that the "new" federal income tax wouldn't have touched those wages in 1914. I'd say that those folks were very well paid by today's standards and could only imagine how our economy would be roaring today if similar rates were paid today. It's a very clear example of the corrosive nature of inflation, the loss of purchasing power of the dollar, and the failure of pay to keep up with that loss.
In 1972 the average wage supported a family of four with 14% left over for savings.
In 1972, 1/3 of private sector jobs were union. Now it's about 5%. Coincidence?
In 1972, minimum wage was equivalent to $15 today.
It's the return of the robber barons.
Robber Barrons...perhaps. More likely dropping the gold standard, FED printing money with no basis of value, and diluting a 1914 dollar to 2014's 1 or 2 cents has something to do with it.
With trillions of debt, and rampant deficits, wait until the velocity of money picks up. YIKES! We'll likely see $20/hour or more minimum wage in my lifetime. Of course, that will still only buy 2 hamburgers and a soda.
Ah, the Gold Standard. To some that's The Answer to All Our Problems. Well, maybe so. I don't know. But I have a question. If all the gold ever mined in he history of the world, all the jewelry and gold watches and bullion and coins and gilt domes and gold teeth and so on and on, were melted into bars and stacked in Fort Knox, it wouldn't be nearly enough to back all the money that's now in circulation. How would that work?
And to others, printing paper that has no intrinsic value is The Answer to All Our Problems.
Zimbabwe paid their debts by printing more "zeros" on their bills...million and billion dollar notes. How did that work for them?
I'm not necessarily an advocate for a gold standard NOW. I simply stated that the destruction of the dollar picked up pace with removal of gold as a standard in the US. Similar destruction of purchase power occured in England when they went off of silver.
BTW, gold COULD back our dollar tomorrow. It would be many 10's of thousands of dollars an ounce, though.
Gold has been "money" for many thousands of years. Not a single paper note has held value as exchange for more than a few hundred years. And of those that have lasted that long, in the end, they purchased only a fraction of what they did when they were first concocted. In the end, they all fail.
In 1920's it took about 15 $20 gold pieces ($300) to buy a car. 15 $20 gold pieces still will ($18000). Gold didn't get expensive...the dollar became worth less. Unions have nothing to do with the destruction of the dollar and loss of purchasing power, nor can they stabilize a wanton spending government. For short periods, they can ensure "high paying" jobs, though, as well as safer working conditions. Similarly, they can lead to loss of job openings due to warped economics (our children are NOT worth $15 to hand over a hamburger and not even count out the change).
My personal expectations for future events are based on historic precident. Our leaders' expectations are based on "hope". That's simply foolish and dangerous.
Destruction of currency frequently if not usually leads to war. Not a pretty picture.