When most people think about supply and demand, they only think about the price of goods such as cars or commodities such as gold. Have you ever thought of your time as a commodity and the more your time is available, the less demand there is for it?
As a human being, all you can give to an employer is a maximum number of hours a day, but the more of you there are or similar level of skilled people in a given population (i.e. in your city) then the less your time will be worth (supply and demand).
During the industrial revolution in the 18th century, white slavery in countries such as Britain was still prominent but as the European governments took the world to two world wars, such terrible working situations ended. After World War II, Britain excelled in the growth of its textile, steel and coal industry and though the coal industry always had enough willing workers to spend their days in the mines due to the higher than average wages, the textile industry in northern parts of England did not appeal to the local population and therefore struggled to expand as a industry. Such menial work was not sought after or preferred by the English and the factory and industry owners were increasingly required to pay higher wages in order to keep workers (skilled and unskilled) in their jobs.
To solve the problem of the rich businessmen paying their workers what they were really worth, the British Government invited immigrants from poorer countries to come and work in Britain for much lower wages than most of their English counterparts were willing to.
Today we have a similar situation with skilled and unskilled labour coming to Britain (and other developed countries) from different parts of the world and because they are willing to earn less than you are, all wages and salaries in a given industry gets pushed down and down and at the same time, other products and services such as food, transport and housing see a unfair higher demand and the prices rise and the salaries cannot keep up.
Something to think about in the next election.
Image courtesy of by Daniel St.Pierre at FreeDigitalPhotos.net