With some government laws and regulations, John Jones, of Alexandria, said, there's less incentive to work hard.
For example, some who receive government assistance such as Medicaid wouldn't get that assistance if they worked more hours, he said. And some companies are cutting workers' hours or positions to meet insurance guidelines.
These factors, Jones said, affect not only the workers but also quality for consumers.
"Where we were (in the past) to now the American dream is more of a fantasy," he said.
And, he added, "the only way we can come back" is to become united rather than bicker between political parties.
Today, Jones sees Labor Day as more of an end to summer indicating that it's "time to get busy" again.
Larry Etchison, who retired from Guide Lamp in 2001 and brought out his 1968 Camaro for the cruise-in, said the Labor Day Picnic is for celebrating workers and seeing people he hasn't seen in awhile.
As for labor and the economy today, he said there just aren't as many good-paying jobs.
"It just ain't like it was back in the '60s," he said.
Attendance for the picnic and cruise-in was up from around 1,500 last year to around 2,000 this year, Hill said.
Like Dani Palmer on Facebook and follow her @DaniPalmer_THB on Twitter, or call 640-4847.