Welcome to AbolishHumanRentals.org home of the modern abolitionist movement. This site examines the standard employment relationship, the human rental, and shows that it is invalid on inalienable rights grounds. The human rental today manifests itself as the voluntary exchange of personal labor for a salary or wage. A legitimate arrangement requires workplace democracy and worker ownership whenever human labor is involved. This site is an educational resource that seeks to promote public awareness and understanding of the problems associated with human rentals. Inquiry into the legitimacy of human rentals has long been buried by a barrage of propaganda with the complicity of the economic establishment.
Such a fundamental question is notably absent from our education system and ignored by the mass media. These ideas must be revived in public discourse. The theory of inalienable rights is only useful to the extent it is widely known and consistently applied in practice. Inalienable rights are based on the already broadly held principle of the non-transferability of responsibility for one’s actions. That principle, taken to its logical conclusion, means the rental of humans have no more legitimacy than their sale. The issue is not one of coercion, willfully choosing to be rented, or the treatment and compensation of workers. Humans cannot choose to be rented for the same reason people cannot choose to sell themselves into slavery or sell their vote, regardless of their consent or how much they are paid. The abolition of human rentals will be no small task given their widespread prevalence and firm entrenchment in the economic system. The modern abolitionist movement must begin by destroying the false perception of legitimacy that human rentals currently maintain. Inalienable rights arguments pose a lethal threat to the practice of renting humans. At stake is nothing less than the employment system, the labor market, and the stock market through which ownership of human rental contracts are exchanged. As with slavery, inalienable rights issues cannot be addressed directly by proponents of human rentals without inviting destruction of the system. There are only two possible responses: Silence in the hope that inalienable rights are never widely understood, or vilification and harassment of the advocates in the event they gain traction. The strategy has thus far been successful in diverting attention from a profound idea and its revolutionary implications. The alternative to human rentals is universal self employment in democratically managed worker owned businesses, or worker cooperatives. Workplace democracy eliminates the alienation of decision making power, and worker ownership means workers appropriate any resulting profits or losses, thus bearing financial responsibility for their actions.
For information about generating more worker coop startups and higher growth see the Worker Cooperative Development website.