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Justice and Mercy

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Tim Evans View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tim Evans Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31 January 2006 at 5:32pm

Thank, but I did not ask about giving a tenth or any other kind of 'charity'.  Is there anyone who can give an explanation of why it is OK to exploit people by paying them less than the value of their work

What was that I was told about truth? "It will set you free".

Tim in Britain
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Megatron View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Megatron Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 04 February 2006 at 11:12pm

Hey Tim,

That's the problem with capitalism.  My mother works like crazy for minimum wage at a coffee shop here in Canada.  It's called Tim Horton's and is a huge moneymaker in Canada.  Her employers make tonnes of money, while she gets minimum wage.

So I guess the sin is on the head of her employers.  I agree with you in that people should be compensated appropriately for their work.  However, you must consider that starting a business entails huge risks.  The employer has to save or borrow tonnes of money and invest it in a business.  The employee does not take that risk and is compensated less.  How much less is debatable.

Say you were staring clock company and you spent 400 000 dollars of your money getting that company started.  Wouldn't you want to be compensated in the future for taking that risk?  If you only made a measly profit while paying your workers exorbitant wages, you would probably not start the company in the first place.  Right?

So I guess ultimately there needs to be a balance.  If a person isn't compensated for their work, most people quit and the employer has to increase wages.  However, if the job market is poor, then exploitation often occurs.

I probably didn't answer your question but at least I tried.

 

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Tim Evans View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tim Evans Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2006 at 7:14am

Thanks Megatron.

 OK lets start with the 400 000 dolors you mentioned. How dose a person start with all that capital if it is not the result of exploitation?

They didn't find that capital ready made in the ground or on a tree. The only place capital can be got is from the work of other people which adds value to the raw materials found in nature.  I know this is an historical crime and that slavery all over the world was how the corrupt stole the fruits of peoples work, but what is interesting to me is that all religions (as far as I can tell) support the continuation of this obvious injustice at the bottom of all inequality.

The great finacial profits that are made from this system are horded- up by fewer and fewer people and squandered in gambling on the stock market or military spending. It can't be right or a sensible way of running the world.

I know some of the wealthy give to charity but it is only a drop in the ocean compared with the theft from hundreds of millions of poor people everywhere.



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peacemaker View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote peacemaker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2006 at 9:46am

Tim Evans,

First of all, I would like to thank you that you are on your way to discover the truth. May Allah bless you in the process.

I will discuss with you and try to answer your question from Islamic point of view inshaAllah ( Allah willing ). To proceed further, I have a question. Could you please tell me how you think that Islam is exploiting masses on economic issues? That way I would be able to pin point the problem, and hence answer your question.

Peace

 

Then which of the favours of your Lord will ye deny?
Qur'an 55:13
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Tim Evans View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tim Evans Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2006 at 12:17pm

Hi, Peacemaker. (good name)

I don't have an special argument with Islam on this matter, but I do have problem with all religions equally on this.

If a person works for an eight our day,  it takes four hours, to produce enough to sell and pay the wages. What happens to the money from production for the rest of the day after it has been sold for a profit? After all the other costs of production have been paid for. The profit must contain the four hours that the employee hasn't been paid for. Multiply that by billions of hours worked by the poor all over the planet and we have the injustice and oppression that causes so much strife.

Why will religions not condemn this?

 

 



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote peacemaker Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2006 at 5:46pm

Hi Tim Evans.

 I have a very close friend, and his first name is Tim. So, I like your name too.

You have raised a very good question. And what you are saying is basically referring to exploitation of labour. "Let them work at minimum possible wage, and take the profit as much as possible." That is why we see that in spite of all  technological and economic developments, we see that the gap between rich and poor is increasing across the globe.

From Islamic perspective, every owner of any company is supposed to pay 2.5 % of the profit in zakat ( charity ). That is minimum. If you look Islamic history, there were also situations when the companions of the Prophet Muhammad ( peace be upon him ) offered 100 % of whatever they had for the noble cause.

Islam strictly forbids exploitation of labour, and instructs the followers to be just with the workers, and promptly pay their due.

When starting a business, one invests time, money and intellect. If business fails, owner gets nothing, whereas a worker gets the wages.

If business prospers, owner should increase the benefits of the employees according to their skills and labour (if their "increased" skill and labour were factor(s) to the more prosperous business ). In that way, it would not be exploitation of the labour.

Hope it helps.

I suggest you start reading some books on Islam to get the idea what actually it stands for.

"Islam in focus" by Hammudah Abdalati can be a good starting point.

Peace

 

 



Edited by peacemaker
Then which of the favours of your Lord will ye deny?
Qur'an 55:13
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Megatron View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Megatron Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 05 February 2006 at 8:35pm

You know what Tim, I think your argument doesn't just entail money but it's the problem with life.  There are people in this world who are stronger, better looking, richer, more powerful, smarter etc.

Humans were not created equal.  I used to have a huge problem not with Islam, but with the world because there were so many inequities in the world that people are born into. 

I'm lucky I live here in Canada and can live a relatively comfortable life, get a great education etc.  If I was born in Africa to a poor family, the best I could hope for was being able to feed my family.

I don't consider religion at fault for not addressing the issue, but you must realize that inequities are inherent in human existance.  Islam in a way accepts that.  It tries to instill change.  I can't remember how many times the Quran chastises people for hoarding money and encourages people to use their money for good works.  However, you must realize that no matter what people do, our societies will always be stratified by class etc.

I try to come to terms with it by realizing that this life on earth is fleeting.  The man who begs on the street and prays to God, will be rich in heaven.  All inequities shall be ironed out in Paradise(Heaven...whatever you want to call it).  You probably don't accept that.   I didn't accept it for years and I was...I hate to admit this, very angry with God for these inequities.  However, I believe that God is just and that God's rewards in the hereafter are better than what this life has to offer. 

I know I'm adding to the ideology that religion is a panacea for the masses, but I believe it with all my heart.  You can bust your butt all day trying to remove inequities from society but you alone can't do it. The only person you can control is yourself so make yourself as an example.  When you work and earn money, help those in a third world country.  If you own a company, pay your workers fairly and use the profits to provide for yourself with the excess going to charity. 

The world is full of selfish people.  You can't do anything to change them, but you can change yourself.

   

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Tim Evans View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Tim Evans Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 06 February 2006 at 7:34am

Megatron,

Respect, and thanks for your honest post.

Thanks also to everyone on the different (pages?) on the site, who have taken up this issue. 

You are rite about the different 'qualities' people  have and I have no compliant there, but its no excuse for us exploitating others or being exploited by them. As for your (and my) good fortune in living in a wealthy country, I think we are only in such a position because, as you note, others are so poor. A lot of wealth in one place means a shortage in another. 

 Yes, I've noticed that Islam pays allot of attention, more than other religions do to social reform and charity. I simply can't understand why it will not move to that next 'theoretical' stage rather than accept injustice as inevitable.

 Life for the individual is indeed 'fleeting' but the results of our actions live on. I feel that this issue is not easy for you or many others of your faith, even if you do trust in God. I think that our true humanity will only flourish when people can face each other as equals and not as exploited and exploiter. COMPETITORS

A sincere thanks for your concern about busting my butt trying to remove inequalities. I'll bare it in mind. I do understand that it is not possible to simply wish away inequality. However, it gives me a sense of purpose knowing that we can have an effect whether or not we are around to see all the results.  

 As for your last point I think it has been our conditions of  insecurity throughout history that has given selfishness its prominent place. Our technological developments properly managed can help overcome our estrangement from each other. It is obvious to hundreds of millions now that we can't carry on as we are.I don't think 'human nature' is irrevocably selfish. You can think of as many examples of selflessness as I can I'm sure.



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