The last Labor Day?

By:  E.J. Dionne Jr.

Let's get it over with and rename the holiday "Capital Day." We may still celebrate Labor Day, but our culture has given up on honoring workers as the real creators of wealth and their honest toil - the phrase itself seems antique - as worthy of genuine respect.

Imagine a Republican saying this: "Labor is prior to and independent of capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration."

These heretical thoughts would inspire horror among our friends at Fox News or in the Tea Party. They'd likely label them as Marxist, socialist or Big Labor propaganda. Too bad for Abraham Lincoln, our first Republican president, who offered those words in his annual message to Congress in 1861. Will President Obama dare say anything like this in his jobs speech this week?

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