RE #43: Solitudinarian, I realize only one of the statements I quoted was yours, that's why I added in parentheses, "or Prof. Wilson". I didn't understand either one of the statements, or Wilson's use of "outcomes", but thanks for answering. I'm still not sure why anyone would want to interpret "fair" in that manner in this context. My explanation seems much more straighforward. If you and Dr. Wilson want to see this as evidence of the word "fair" changing its meaning, then so be it. Maybe we will just have to disagree with each other here. :-) I believe that Prof. Wilson is pointing out that it is quite easy for individuals to tacitly agree on a system of rules [...] generally it is not very difficult.
Well, this is where I also have to disagree. Whether it's relatively easy or not to come to an agreement about what is "fair", depends on the situation. Sometimes it's easy - baseball, for instance; sometimes it's not. If you look at the history of labor relations in the U.S. (or elsewhere!) it has been extremely difficult to agree on some "tacit system of rules governing behavior". In fact it's been well-nigh impossible and has in the past, at times, broken out into violent and bloody confrontation. That's because of a fundamental conflict of interest in the parties involved. In the past unskilled or low-skilled workers have
accepted extremely low wages, wages so low that they can't afford a roof over their head or put food on the table. And they've accepted extremely poor working conditions. But that doesn't mean they thought they were being paid or treated fairly, it's just that they had no other choice. That's a big difference.
RE #46: Skilled employees in the U.S. can, in general, bargain for better wages, depending on their field, their skills or experience, the market, and the company hiring them. However, that doesn't apply to unskilled, minimum wage jobs. With all the minimum wage jobs I've ever had, and I've had a few, it was either "take it or leave it; there's the door". There is no bargaining; the employer has absolute say over what their employees will be paid. The system is hardly "fair" to those employees in my opinion.
Anyway, it was not my
example of the minimum wage law (2007). That was the example given by Wilson and the only
example he mentioned in the entire video to support his claim. I must admit that I don't really understand what he is talking about with this supposed new meaning in the word "fair". That hasn't been my experience. He mentions no names and gives only one example, which to me does not require any new meaning to the word "fair". The only other hint he mentions is that this change he observes started "in the 1990s". Does he maybe mean during the Clinton administration? What is he referring to? No names and only one example. Hmmm. I honestly don't know what he is talking about.
So to summarize, yes, words change in meaning over time and that can be extremely fascinating. I just don't think this video is a good example of it. By the way, I'm not a translator, just a musician.
I cite this as a counterexample to Prof. Wilson's claim of some change in meaning of the word "fair": Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938
Maximum Struggle for a Minimum Wage
"all our able-bodied working men and women a fair day's pay for a fair day's work."
- Franklin Delano Roosevelthttp://www.dol.gov/oasam/programs/history/fls...
This is what I turned up on the usage of "fair" to describe wages, wage laws, etc. Seems to me that talking about "fair" pay, wages, labor, has been around for quite a while. It's in the name of the law cited above which originally introduced a minimum wage in the U.S.A. during the Great Depression. FDR was a Democrat. Nothing new, nothing's changed :-)