First, you have to have a concept of what humanity is good for in the physical world. Making wages ‘fair’ based on a system of extracting all resources from the planet until it fails is simply naive and mindless. The biggest issue even at that is not the wage, but the disinformation about the actual value of labor and creativity (always low prices), as well as the life deprived of someone when they choose (willingly or out of desperation) to work ‘for’ someone else’s profit. The value of a ‘minimum’ wage should be according to what value a person can create for themselves (growing their own food, meeting their own needs, caring for and educating a family and community) if they didn’t have to spend 60–80 hours per week (including prep, traffic, cleanup, etc) at someone else’s beckon call. This is the core of Jeffersonian agrarianism and democracy itself.

When considering that humans should be contributing more to their environment than they extract, then the concept of most ‘labor’ would be reversed to imagining mindful outdoors manual labor (low inputs, high outputs) should be considered the most valuable position in human endeavors for the future environment (as opposed to, say, Wall Street with its high ‘civilized’ resource inputs and low human personal creative contributions to physical resources). We keep looking for ‘value’ in all the wrong places. Sure, we can create robots to do the hard labor for us, but that just accelerates consumptionism as a mindset, it doesn’t solve the problem that humans are basically untethered hogs at a buffet they didn’t pay for.

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