chapter  63
8 Pages

THE ENTERPRISE

A further consequence of the capitalistic development is to be found in the fact that the increased industrial wages raise the wages which must be paid in rural districts and thus promote the scarcity of hired help which so greatly embarrasses the farmers. Less conspicuous, but in its lasting effect more serious, is another danger which constantly shows itself where the natural economy is gradually being eliminated. So long as the peasant's natural economy still strongly reinforces his position, the prices which he recovers from his products do not make allowance for his own costs of subsistence; in other words, the full costs of production are not covered. In order, on passing to the complete monetary economy, to remain on a remunerative basis, he must sell at greatly increased prices. But even when he obtains payment at higher prices for the foodstuffs that are urgently demanded by the recently added urban population he is not sure of recovering his cost without loss. He may be the loser by finding himself compelled to resort for his personal consumption to foodstuffs of inferior nutritive qualities. In many localities the generation now growing up is no longer being fed so as to keep its members in fit condition for the exhausting work to which they are bred.