Posted by Henry on December 21, 2003
In Reply to: Life is cheap posted by C Cramer on December 20, 2003
: The meaning is clear but what are the origins of this phrase or cliche?
In some societies, material possessions are less easy to acquire than the labour of poor people. This was often the case before and during the Industrial Revolution. It was considered more economic to risk the lives of workers, and replace them when injured or killed, than to improve safety and working conditions. Loss of lives was considered to be cheaper. Work is still exported to countries with lower values for human lives.