If Charles Dickens were time warped into this U.S. election cycle, he would be astonished — not by the vitriol, restrained by 19th century standards, but by candidates extolling the virtues of manufacturing jobs.
When the Industrial Revolution dawned in Dickens’ time, such jobs were not up there with apple pie and motherhood; they were seen as mindless and monotonous, sucking up what was then the bottom of the labor pool — women and children — and putting them in horrific, dangerous conditions.
So, how did these jobs become the ideals of a halcyon past?Simple: they started paying a lot better. […]
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