It applies to Canada as well and I would say it is essentially the basis of the desire for hardcore capitalism in our nation-states. But having worked in "Hard-Working Sectors" like manual labour (assembly) and entry level trades (framing and demo) the variety of these jobs do not get "Hard-Working Americans" ahead. In fact in Canada these jobs, without bonuses, would not even be able to climb out of the first tax bracket. If I worked 8 hours a day for every weekday the job I am in now I would only make 27,000. I think these people certainly deserve more. In fact in order to climb out of the first tax bracket (40,000 income) they would have to work 91 overtime shifts over a 365 day work year. I don't even know any workplace with that much overtime available. So, the point. You can be as hard-working as you want, but as mistreatment of workers and unfair wages are so common it won't get you anywhere, except for poverty.