Caribbean Project: Free Labor vs. Slave Labor In Post-Emancipation Jamaica


Whenever I hear libertarians prattle on about the superiority of free labor over slave labor, I roll my eyes because the poor dears know nothing about history, or mangle history to justify their theories.

Here’s further evidence from Ian Thomson’s The Dead Yard that slavery was superior to freedom:

“Jamacica loves a hero, and no Jamaican was more heroic than Paul Bogle, the Baptist preacher and reform agitator who led the Morant Bay uprising. Bogle and his conspirators were protesting not against the adored Queen Victoria and the empire she ruled from London, but against the plight of the half-starving black majority that was without work, without land or a future.

By the 1860s – thirty years after emancipation – many Jamaican plantations had turned to scrub as the owners were unable to compete with the cheap sugar produced by Cuba and Brazil. Jamaica had become a patchwork of ramshackle, half-evacuated farmsteads, where rumours of re-enslavement (associated with the possibility of Jamaica joining the United States as a slave state) were rife.”

Shouldn’t it have been the other way around?

After the abolition of slavery in Saint-Domingue, sugar production in free labor Haiti collapsed while igniting a boom in slave labor Cuba, Jamaica, and Louisiana.

In 1834, slavery was abolished in Jamaica. Thirty years later, the economy in free labor Jamaica had been prostrated because the sugar plantations there couldn’t compete with slave labor in Cuba and Brazil.

Neither Haiti or Jamaica ever recovered from freedom.

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  1. Shouldn’t it have been the over way around?

    There is no ideological substitute for intelligence in pursuit of self-interest. Despite the clearly visceral, overwhelming demand (White people, especially, are like crack junkies for ideas to substitute for intelligence).

    Intelligence in pursuit of self-interest beats ideology every time, because it adapts.

  2. “There is no ideological substitute for intelligence in pursuit of self-interest.”
    Racial differences basically throw a wrench is just about every ideology and economic theory, and for just this reason.

  3. Respect for private property, honoring contracts/commitments and basic integrity are necessary precursors to free markets. Negroes or at least a huge percentage of them lack all three. Libertarian theory simply doesn’t apply to Negroes anymore than it would apply to an ant colony, chimp troop or dog pack.

  4. The Rastafarian religion is interesting ….

    1) a sect believes it is the 12 lost Israelite tribes that were banished into the wilderness. I guess it just isn’t a 2-way fight between certain Christians and Jews for that title, but a three-way that includes Rastafarians. Then, throw muslims into Temple Mount Site squabble. “Bob Marley was from the tribe of Joseph ….. ”

    2) smoking weed is part of the religion. Genesis 1:11 “And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so.”, etc..

    3) they have a black Jesus

    4) “heaven” as being a place on Earth, specifically Ethiopia.

  5. There is a hilarious part of this book where a group of Rastafarians mistakenly believe that a ship has arrived in Jamaica to take them to Ethiopia.

    Some Rastas believe that Idi Amin was the reincarnation of Marcus Garvey.

  6. When was in Jamaica 20 years ago, I noticed that the secondary highways – 2 lane paved rural roads had 20ft long structural steel “I ” beams sticking vertically out of the gravel shoulders (“I” because of the cross-sectional shape) . I was curious about this and asked the bus-driver/tour-guide. He told me they were put there to discourage smuggling planes from landing on the road to pick up weed shipments (for US, most likely). Then, I saw a field with about 20 to 30 planes with a wing sheared off from hitting a I beam. Obviously, a hazard for cars, but that never seemed to matter.

    The other screwed-up thing was: because it was a British colony they drove on the left-hand side of the road (US and Canada are right-hand), but almost all cars were used and imported from the US so the steering wheel was on the wrong side (adjacent to shoulder instead of center line). This was really sketchy, and I’m sure half the dudes were driving stoned.

  7. “1) a sect believes it is the 12 lost Israelite tribes that were banished into the wilderness. I guess it just isn’t a 2-way fight between certain Christians and Jews for that title, but a three-way that includes Rastafarians. Then, throw muslims into Temple Mount Site squabble. “Bob Marley was from the tribe of Joseph ….. ”

    ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha h a ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!

    Sorry, had to pick myself up off the floor. What idiocy.

    Hunter, this article alone, comparing apples with apples, is utterly devastating to the fallacy that a) the Black man can exist in a civilization apart from white/European rule, and 2) that everything since 1865 has been ‘progress.’

    Secession. Now. Today. Forever. ORION.

  8. The only reason i’m not a slavery advocate is because of modern robotics. Negroes have not been a net contribution to any economy before or since.

    Perhaps I am being myopic and there is still a place for slavery? Itd be a hard sell though to be convinced a Negro is worth three meals a day unless he’s diving for pearls and damn good at it.

  9. HW — I don’t know much of the history of this region, but if, as you say, the Jamaican planters were driven out of business by cheaper products from the remaining neighboring slave states, then any argument you make about the inherent superiority of slavery is quite frankly ludicrous. Ceteris paribus, a cheaper product will outsell a more expensive product of the same quality; and since slave labor is cheaper than paid labor, le-voila monsieur. This is simple fluid dynamics, it barely even attains the level of economics, let alone politics or metaphysics or human nature; there’s nothing philosophical about it. If all the neighboring states were free-labor entities competing on more equal terms, then we’d see a different result.

    If you want to make an argument about the natural suitability or unsuitability of blacks for X or Y type of work or society, those arguments are complex, and many are somewhat persuasive. But your argument seems to be, removing it a step, that since China can make dirt-cheap products by working political prisoners to death in labor camps, then their system is superior, well all I can do is scratch my head. An economy exists to serve human happiness, not the other way round.

    Imagine for a moment a skilled carpenter who runs a furniture-building workshop, employing maybe four or five people, and they make custom-built furniture. The only problem is, their hand-made furniture has the same materials, designs, and functionality as the stuff from IKEA. Well he’s not going to be able to compete in the same market sector, is he. From this we do not infer that hand-crafted furniture is bad; we just tell the guy, you have to change your designs, use better materials, appeal to rich, squishy ‘fair-trade’ customers… do SOMEthing that is value-added, or you’ll go bankrupt.

    Let’s say he somehow manages to just barely squeak by; he doesn’t make as much money as an IKEA exec, but he makes the same or slightly more than a worker drone on the IKEA factory floor. Well in that case maybe the value that is added is to him, personally; he prefers to be a free shop-owner than an employee, so the whole trouble is worth it to him, but not on paper, only in his own skull. That’s another possibility.

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but I was under the impression that the plantation owners and their families in these slave-labor areas were accustomed to a rather grandiose and aristocratic lifestyle; one would of course have to factor that grand expense into the cost of doing business. It may be that the chance to live like a Lord was what enticed them to leave England and move to the tropics in the first place; and if they couldn’t live in a sufficiently grand manner then it wasn’t worth it for them to remain supervising the sullen ex-slaves, always with eyes in the backs of their heads. I don’t know, it’s merely a reasonable inference.

    What puzzles me about this is, I was under the impression that world demand for things like sugar and coffee and the stuff one grows in the Antilles was so enormous, it should have been possible to sell your free-labor products even in a market dominated by slave labor. The fact that, in the absence of whites, blacks apparently could not band together themselves to form workers co-ops or something of the sort to exploit market niches at a certain price point, is a human-nature factor (quite possibly an HBD one, though this case doesn’t clinch it), and not something that argues for particular specific economic or social systems. “Freedom failed” is reductivist, not an interesting nor productive way to examine the problem.

  10. “then any argument you make about the inherent superiority of slavery is quite frankly ludicrous.”

    The arguments advanced were that slavery was detrimental economically, this is false considering the specific conditions that existed, and basically no longer exist, in the south/caribbean.

    “China can make dirt-cheap products by working political prisoners to death in labor camps, then their system is superior”

    China is going balls to the wall pro-China. America can’t sell out the American worker fast enough, and as a result their model is superior and that is all there is to it. The particulars about how any particular product is made pales in comparison to that.

    “What puzzles me about this is, I was under the impression that world demand for things like sugar and coffee and the stuff one grows in the Antilles was so enormous, it should have been possible to sell your free-labor products even in a market dominated by slave labor.”

    This is the point, that they were not able to organize to the degree necessary to exploit their natural resources to anything approaching the production pre-independence. HW would not have made this post if they were producing even a steady 50% of what they had before slavery, which would have been a win given the very real risk of a slave revolt ending all production among other things. Production collapsed entirely, as it has in just about every other example in the past 200 years, and that is why freedom failed. It is in their best interest then to make their area simply too dangerous for casual foreign exploitation, and that is only going to stop Asia/Arabia in Africa proper for as long as the American Empire holds.

  11. This site is a joke, right? Please tell me it is. If not, this is one fucked up site. Please come forth to the 21st century.

  12. The post counters the looney libertarian notion that abolitionism was inevitable or profitable when it was neither and can ultimately be considered a depressing failed experiment that caused great confusion for Negroes and continues to set back civilization to this day.

    “sullen ex-slaves”

    The freedmen were not jubilant?

    “human happiness”

    Negroes exist to serve humans, not the other way around.

  13. Niggers belong in Africa, away from humanity. On thier own, their numbers will dwindle down to nothing in just a generation or two.
    Then Africa can subsequently be inhabited by humanity.
    In no way should niggers be used to serve humanity. They are destroyers of anything and everything they touch.

  14. Slave based economies are a disaster for true free enterprise. Slave based economies always lead to monopoly.
    The slaveowners, free from the overhead of paying wages, amass fortunes which they then use to buy up even more land, buy out businesses and companies of all kinds, and then use their power to undercut whatever businesses do remain to the point the company has to sell or go bankrupt. The slaveowners are always kind enough to buy the failing business which they themselves undermined, for 10 cents on the dollar.
    The slavery that was brought to the new world was a disaster for us.
    In addition to creating a monopoly where a few large corporations control the economy, the slave system introduced a foreign and alien race amongst us.
    The effects are very much still with us today.
    Our economy, our economic system , is a monoploy. The top 500 Fortune companies rule (along with the Federal Reserve bank). The Federal Reserve bank exists to protect and sustain the large corporations, many times,most times, at our expense and to our disadvantage. Many of these large corporations were started and financed and originally owned by large slaveowners in the States.
    Between a monopoly based economy which stifles and greatly undermines true free enterprise and destroys mom -and-pop type businesses, slavery introduced Africans to the new world. They never would have made it over here on their own.
    Slavery was a complete disaster for the United Satates. We all now have to deal with the effects of slavery because of a handful of slaveowners who wanted great wealth and control at the expense of their unpaid workforce and,ultimately, at the expense of all of us. Truly a disaster.
    A true free enterprise system would give us all the things we enjoy today,without the intractable problems that follow in the wake of a slave based economy.

  15. Just from a moral stand point alone. Slavery is never a good thing, it rots the culture.
    It weakens the moral fortitude of a society. Just a nasty way of doing things.
    When a society depends on their slaves to eat, tend to their homes and pay for their bloated lives, it makes the slave owner dependant on their slaves.
    No good ever comes out of slavery.

  16. >>>Then Africa can subsequently be inhabited by humanity.>>>

    Habitat for Humanity. Niggers can build houses for the poor Whites.

  17. Two verities have been mentioned on this thread and thoroughly prevail in that they are patently intuitive.

    1) Slave labor vitiates the grand scheme of free enterprise – fair and competitive markets.

    2) Negroes must never be allowed to be brought into white nations/regions. All here have opined ad infinitum that they are above all things maximum destroyers.

    Can we not all agree that an honest day’s wage for an honest day’s work is fundamental to both a moral societal construct (Biblical/intuitive), and that beyond this presupposition the seeds of our own destruction were sown when we brought the accursed black African to these golden shores?

  18. A true scotsman, I mean free enterprise system gave us a reconquista, my friend. Any instance of slavery leading to monopolies and intractable demographic concerns stem not from slavery as a system but from lack of regulation and oversight. A “free” economy is prone to the same foibles.

    Africa is vastly rich in natural resources and the western enslavement of Negroes was a creative and profitable utilization of a peculiarly primitive creature. Hindsight 20/20.

  19. Forced labour production has never been more efficient than traditional White and Asian farmers doing their work themselves and with family and voluntary local help.

    Yes, the exception: AFRICANS may be much more productive in thrall, but that never justified bringing (buying) them here to settle with us. Greed and laziness are sins, never justifiable.

  20. Agreed, Harry O. Honest work for an honest dollar. Bringing in a nigger and threating death and torture for work is not a good thing.
    It corrupts and ruins.
    Slavery is a bubble that always bursts. Only a few generations get fat and wealthy from it. Then the later generations pay dearly for the short sighted greed of their ancestors.
    And that’s all it is, pure greed. Incorrect money never lasts.

  21. Global corporate agribusiness is still crying for and bringing in more, cheaper laborers. How is this different from negro enslavement? Their “profit motive” is responsible for much of the demographic shift from White to Hispanic in many states.

  22. Mosin Nagant, you just answered your own question in your comment.

    GLOBAL. A global economy in not a nationalistic economy. Most of the products of southern slavery was headed outside of the south. It was, in a sence, global.

  23. Re: “a creative and profitable utilization of a peculiarly primitive creature”:
    Yet blending them en masse into our White demography. Not so profitable in the long run.

  24. To claritfy my above comment. If a nation has the human resources to create and supply other nations with a product, this is a good thing. When a nation has to import or force this labor pool to sustain their exports, it always fails in the end. It is a bubble that will collaspse. China will fall under it’s own weight at some point due to forced/under paid labor. The bigger the beast grows, the more discontent among the enslaved and the smaller the enslaving group becomes.
    A small compact group that doesn’t take on more than can do themselves, without foreign aid/labor is more likely to sustain in the long run.
    Bringing in slaves in mass and expanding production leaves the production reliant upon the slave class, it will inevitably fail and fail big.

  25. Re: “threatening death and torture for work is not a good thing”:

    It has been called benevolence, when the use of force in their case makes them so much more productive, helps them reproduce so much better, live so much longer, etc., than they ever would by nature. Yet it was and is not right to bring them here, whether by force or invitation, to mix among us.

  26. I don’t like blacks very much. To my mind, if you don’t like someone, then just ignore ’em.
    Here we have slaveowners – they didn’t like blacks either, they disliked blacks more than I do– yet they brought these blacks they didn’t like into their own lands, their own homes, and then they complained about the blacks. Pretty stupid.
    If I don’t like someone, the last thing I’m going to do is bring that person into my home, either through an invitation, or by force. How stupid it is to drag people you don’t like into your home — against their will,no less! It just doesn’t make sense on any level.
    There’s more to a country, a nation, than the economy. A nation is about blood, the spirit of the blood: it’s about family, people, folk, a common heritage and culture, and dare I say, a common faith. The slaveowners didn’t give a damn about any of these things. Through their great greed, our country, our nation, was greatly weakened.
    The slaveowners did more harm to us, white Americans ,than to the blacks even. The blacks greatly benefit to be out of Africa. We don’t benefit at all from their presence here, quite the opposite, their presence here is a great bane on us white Americans. It would be a very long post to list all the ways the blacks drag this country down.The slaveowners committed a great crime against our race, our nation, our heritage, our faith, and our culture.
    By the way, the Scandinavian countries never got involved in slavery, and the Scandinavians still managed to figure out how to have a thriving and prosperous economy.
    I agree with you 100%.

  27. Mother nature is always trying to wipe niggers off the face of the earth. It’s DWL and jews that keep them here.
    Left to their own ways, they would be back to swinging from trees and eating mud pies within a generation.
    I can just imagine what would happen in Africa if all foriegn aid was cut off. If they were sealed in for, say, fifty years without any outside influence. It would be the largest genocide the world has ever seen. Not to mention the diseases that would also take out a large amount of them. The survivors would eventually starve off. Just maybe one percent of their current population would still be around.

  28. As far as slavery, it reminds me of the drug trade. It is very profitable, brutal and ruins everything around it.
    Dirty money. Supply and demand. The northern elite became wealthy, the jews and the large plantation owners as well. The middlemen/trafficers made less and the street level dealers made even less.
    The south provided the demand and the elites supplied. All parties guilty. Together the small groups bring down the culture.
    At least a crack rock doesn’t mulitply. Even crack is less harmful than a population of millions of niggers.

  29. An important aspect to this issue is that Muslim Arabs and Jews ran the African slave trade as a way of undercutting free White labour in the colonies.

    Jewish mercantile interests had a huge stake in buying Africans from the Arab slavers and running them to the New World because the creation of a permanent underclass of slavery would change the European demographic in the European colonies and freeze out the Whites who were migrating out of great troubles and who had only their labour to sell. It ensured that free Whites would have to enter indentured servitude in the New World and compete with Black slave labour trafficked and sold by Jewish slavers.
    Now, of course, in Judaic discourse it is the White Europeans who are blamed for human traffick.

  30. Supply and demand, Lynda.
    White southerners needed niggers, jews supplied.
    No need, supply.
    Laziness and greed on the part of the south and just pure jewry on the supply side.

  31. One of the things that Whites will have to analyze, Sean, is how the supply / demand game is rigged with Jew fiat money or Bank money. Remember Adam Smith’s ‘Invisible Hand’ that regulated the ‘free’ Market that we all had to learn about now we see the Man Behind the Curtain pulling the levers of Great Oz.

    It takes a Toto, Sean. It takes a Toto.

  32. I can’t argue with that, Lynda. The money masters used, abused and set the south up for the northern assault.
    They also funded it. Just as they funded the slave trade. Until the south understands the big picture, they will just blame the union.
    The union, of that time are long gone, just as the foolish puppets of money/jewry(slave traders) are long gone.
    Jews love greed, they play off of it.

  33. Freedom failed sums it up quite nicely …

    1.) Saint-Domingue, the French plantation colony that grew sugar, coffee, cotton and indigo, was the richest colony in the world, and dwarfed the 13 American colonies in its output.

    2.) Jamaica, I have learned, was also more valuable than the 13 mainland colonies.

    3.) At the time of the American Revolution, South Carolina was the richest colony would the highest per capita income.

    4.) These silly arguments for freedom are risible.

    – Emancipation destroyed the economy of Saint-Domingue. The flight of French planters to Cuba, Jamaica, and Louisiana ignited sugar booms there.

    – Emancipation destroyed the economy of Jamaica and other slave colonies in the British West Indies.

    5.) Slavery generated enormous wealth and profits. Freedom generated enormous poverty with the same people in the same conditions.

    6.) The abolition of slavery in one area reinforced slavery in other areas because capital and fled from free societies to slave societies.

  34. The corporate economy grew out of the North’s free labor system in the 1860s and 1870s. Eric Foner covers this in elaborate detail in his book on Reconstruction.

  35. (1) Antebellum slaves were the property of their masters. Cheap labor from overseas is more analagous to Northern factory workers or Chinese coolies.

    (2) Slaves were not citizens or voters. They were not part of society.

    (3) The master of the slave was responsible for his welfare, not the public.

    (4) Slaves were locked down on plantations like prison inmates.

  36. Sean,

    You don’t know what you are talking about.

    (1) White labor was tried initially in Virginia, Barbados, and Jamaica. Free Whites were unsuited to even be masters in the tropics because of health reasons.

    (2) For biological reasons, negroes are better adapted to plantation labor in tropical and subtropical climates.

    (3) Finally, the vast majority of slaves brought to British North America came on Yankee and British slave ships.

  37. Jamaica vows to drop Queen as head of state – Portia Simpson Miller, the new prime minister of Jamaica, has vowed to abandon the Queen as head of state and turn the country into a republic. Jan 2012

    Mrs Simpson Miller’s centre-Left People’s National Party won a landslide victory over the governing Labour Party in last week’s parliamentary elections, standing on a that included abandoning the monarchy.


    Naturally, black a populous always defaults towards afro-marxism.

    I wonder how the unhinging of European culture/traditions will play out?

    Actually, in Europe, the unhinging of European culture/traditions with Cultural Marxism hasn’t been going very well.

  38. Are later generations really paying for slavery or anti-slavery? It was anti-slavery fanatics that set the blacks loose, made them into citizens, and elevated them over Whites.

  39. Are later generations really paying for slavery or anti-slavery?

    Definitely, but it’s worst than that.

    The slavery guilt trip is one of the 2 pillars of human rights/multiculturalism, and multiculturalism is race replacement. The other pillar is Holohaux and that pillar is so important that in Europe they’ve enacted laws criminalizing Holocaust denial – just ask Ernst Zündel.

  40. In other words, the Confederates were quite prescient in their critiques of “free society.” It is not Mississippi or Alabama guilt tripping Whites about slavery, putting negroes on a pedestal, or dogmatically enforcing multiculturalism and anti-racism.

    That type of sick culture flourishes in states like Vermont and Massachusetts. Because we are subjugated to the Glorious Union, we are victimized by one mania after another, whether it be abolition or gay marriage.

  41. Prior to the “War Amongst States”, almost all black were in the South, but now its about a 50/50 split between South the North. Many Northerners were inspired by the “freedom crusade” and fought to end slavery, but 150 years later are saddled with their own black problem (eg Detroit, ghettos, etc.) but yet they are still in denial of the problem they worked to import. I’m assuming that the hard reality will soon hit home (I hope). Its a case of: “Be careful what you wish for as you may actually get it.”

    A similar thing happened in Canada as liberal types set up the Underground Railroad to get them into Canada, but now the reality is starting to show itself ..

    Prison watchdog probes spike in number of black inmates – 52% increase in proportion of black offenders in federal system since 2000

    May be the Underground Railroad into Canada wasn’t such a good idea.

  42. Slavery sucks, period end of story. Pick your own cotton one way or another and make your own bed.

  43. Could Whites have picked the cotton?

    (1) Sure, White sharecroppers picked the cotton in the Jim Crow era, in a vastly poorer society than the one that had been destroyed.

    (2) Would White laborers have picked the cotton? Some would have as free laborers under conditions of extreme poverty.

    (3) Is free labor superior to slave labor? In the light of the results of abolition, how can anyone make this argument?

  44. Mon ami!

    How we are talking past one another here. Hunter, et. al. I’m assuming you are merely asserting that blacks are better controlled in an absolute sense (slavery) then being given freedom in an absolute sense (citizenship).

    Well, of course. But surely you don’t believe that to journey to Africa and man-steal (yes I know slavers but waited at the docks to receive the stolen goods themselves from other blacks, etc.) these nightmarish aliens under the most heinous conditions (they are still human beings, we were still a thoroughly Christian people and must answer to the “Judge of all the earth) and bring them here under any circumstances could ever rationally be thought a good, great, wonderful enterprise.

    Slavery could not endure in a noble, Christian, and peaceful society. This was acknowledged by our founders, etc. and the tacitly exhibited the sentiment in the constitution itself. Even E. A. Pollard (The Lost Cause – 1865) acknowledges this but insists the South would have moved in its own way and time to this end without interference from the North.

    We can scream about the vile abolitionists (and they were) and the demented propositionalist elites of the North forever but in the end the returns are in. Slavery failed in the South and North and this generation that had nothing to do with it is paying the ultimate price.

    “Be sure your sins will find you out.”

    Now can we move on and work on the SEPARATION solution.

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