AMERICAN LABOUR CONDITIONS .[To the Editor of the SPECTATOR.] Sat,-
—Will you or any of your readers familiar with up-to-date labour conditions in the U.S.A. solve for me the extraordinary Problem of the apparently sudden change in the relations between Capital- and Labour in that country ?
Everybody talks now of the abounding prosperity in America Ow to cordial co-operation between employers and employed, whose shining example we poor stupid Britons are called upon to follow if we hope to be saved ; but it is surely only a very
few years since the doings of the I.W.W. in the U.S.A. shocked the world, and there was open war between the capitalists and the Communist-Socialist miners and other workers, chiefly of foreign extraction.
From such novels as Jack London's The Iron Heel, and Upton Sinclair's The Spy, &c., supported by facts recorded in the newspapers, there were good grounds for believing in a brutal, ruthless antagonism between workers and the capitalists and their trusts, which was appalling to English cars, and made us thank our stars we were not as these other men. Is it true that all that ill-feeling and bitter conflict has suddenly disappeared ? It is very puzzling.
" Are things what they seem, Or am visions about ? "
• [Our correspondent raises an interesting point. There is, of course, still antagonism between Capital and Labour in the United States, but on the whole the relations between the two have greatly improved. Several causes have contributed to this result. Restricted immigration and the consequent demand for workers ; high wages ; the welfare work in large factories and the setting up of joint committees of employers and employed, and the transformation of many hand-workers into small capitalists.—ED. Spectator.]