Labour Unions Are Misusing Productivity Measures

manual labour

By Loane Sharp

Labour unions like to measure labour productivity by looking at total output per worker in the economy. However, total output per worker has only increased as much as it has over the past fifty years because capitalists have invested in more and better tools that workers can use to be more productive. Therefore, by looking at total output per worker, labour unions are skewing the productivity of labour grossly in their favour when it comes to wage negotiations.

Nelson Mandela and Volunteerism


By Robert Murphy

Recently Nelson Mandela celebrated his 93rd birthday. In honor of the event, the Nelson Mandela Foundation asked people to donate 67 minutes of their time to public service. Although the foundation and the media reporting on it undoubtedly mean well, the entire discussion perpetuates the myth that paid work is somehow useless to society. But the truth is just the opposite: If someone is actually getting paid to do work, he or she knows that at least one person values it. In contrast, volunteer work may or may not be useful, because it lacks the feedback of market prices.

An Open Letter to the Minister of Economic Development from 2010


The following is an open letter addressed to the then- Minister of Economic Development for South Africa, Ebrahim Patel, written by IFP MP Mario GR Oriani-Ambrosini. The letter was written in 2010, and covers the problems of, and potential ways to reform, the fractional reserve banking system in South Africa. This letter is presented for the sake [...]