Environmental ‘Luddism’ and Feenberg Contra Technological Determinism

My post yesterday on the debate on the Factories Act of 1844 was written to remind ourselves of the perennial dismissal–in the all-too-familiar language of economic efficiency–of attempts to introduce values pertinent to worker-side regulation in industrial workplaces. As noted, I had borrowed the example ¬†from Andrew Feenberg’s¬†Reason and Modernity, his latest book in aContinue reading “Environmental ‘Luddism’ and Feenberg Contra Technological Determinism”

The Factory Act of 1844 and the Economic Inefficiency of Banning Child Labor

One of the dominant threads–sometimes explicit, sometimes implicit–in any modern conversation about employer-side regulation of the workplace (health and safety standards, worker unions etc) is that such constraints are invariably economically inefficient, a burden on the profit-making potential of the enterprise. The parameters for this conversation are drawn from a sparse set consisting of technocraticContinue reading “The Factory Act of 1844 and the Economic Inefficiency of Banning Child Labor”