chapter  VII
13 Pages

THE PAYMENT OF SERVICE

Several criticisms may be passed on this doctrine. One is that the least skilled cannot earn the minimum. The community may conceivably give it them out of the surplus produced by other <4=85C70CBD5R24BDCC74H20==>[email protected];4=CE0;D45>A8C)74A40;E0;D4>5C748AF>A:8B measured by their actual earnings in a system of free exchange, and in such a system unless the ?>B8C8>=>5;01>DA8B4G24?C8>=0;;H5>ACD=0C40B8=0=4F0=3A8272>D=CAHF43>=>CR=3C70C D=B:8;;4340A=8=6BA4027C7428E82<8=8<D<HE0A8>DB34E824B CA034D=8>=8B<F064B boards, etc., we may attempt to raise them to such a minimum; but even supposing (what is in doubt) that we can be permanently successful in so doing, we are still in reality giving the better wage, and it is not being earned. The reply is that in a competitive system what an individual can earn depends not only on his power of work, but on his power of getting 78<B4;5?0835>A8C)74B42>=3?>8=C8B?0AC;H0<0CC4A>5?4AB>=0;@D0;8R20C8>=BC7>D67 =>C>5C7>[email protected];8R20C8>=BF78270A4B>280;;H<>BCE0;D01;4C8B7>F4E4A<08=;H34?4=- dent on social conditions, which so operate that the poorer a man is the less in general is his chance of escaping from poverty. Now a just system differs from a competitive system in eliminating this second condition and substituting its own standard of remuneration, which is so conceived as to harmonize the interests of the producer and the community. From the point of view of the producer the governing principle of the harmony is that the lowest remuneration must yield the civic minimum. From the point of view of the community the weakest worker must be able to produce so much that when he is paid the community is not poorer. That is to say, he is the weakest worker who is required, not of charity, by the F>A:8=6>5C74BHBC4<)78BRG4BC74<8=8<D<BC0=30A3>5C74A4<D=4A0C8>=>5F>A:8=0 justly ordered system, and it is clear that in such a system the weakest worker is earning his pay.