Jobs for All: Capitalism on Trial


221 pages
Contains Illustrations, Bibliography
ISBN 0-458-97410-2





Reviewed by Aluin Gilchrist

Aluin Gilchrist is a Vancouver-based Canadian government civil
litigation lawyer.


Pacesetting trade unions could say: “We’ve moved a bit ahead of the current productivity increase, so we’ll help the consumers get their heads above water.” If you believe that is not likely to happen, then read this former cabinet minister’s vigorous little book.

Oligopolist industries are where the damage is being done. In such industries wages rise faster than productivity. Other industries just play catch-up. Hellyer’s suggestion is not complicated: Freeze everything for a year, for committees to work out the details. Use four-year floating averages to establish the real change of productivity in each oligopoly. Set the maximum wage or profit increase a bit short of that. Tax away 100 per cent of any excess but encourage profit sharing. Allow a committee of the labour movement to allocate that bit to those who need it to catch up.

Most of us will value this book for its criticism of rival prescriptions.


Hellyer, Paul, “Jobs for All: Capitalism on Trial,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed December 7, 2023,