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FRED
06-26-07, 01:33 AM
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DemonD
06-26-07, 04:04 PM
Nike in Indonesia is far, far worse than this. I have also heard of companies that have things done in the Phillipenes where there is direct support of the Philipene army by the US gov't and corporations to maintain order when workers get an inkling of uprising. Sweatshop labor is something that almost every mutli-national conglomerate participates in. Wal-mart is operating (in china) under an aristocratic-fascist state and taking advantage of the opportunities they can for their purpose of being, and that is to make money for their shareholders. More advantageous than the phillipenes, corporations and US government doesn't have to directly subsidize the chinese army because they do it themselves. It is the governments and military of those countries that allow this to happen.

I'm not going to lay blame on wal-mart. They are playing by the rules of the game as they are laid out in 2007. I would say I don't condone these actions, but as someone who both shops at and owns wal-mart stock, and someone who has worked at a sam's club in the past, my actions in effect do condone the wal-mart business model. I do, however, try to buy american whenever possible. The vast majority of my clothes are american-made, my car was manufactured in america (thank you, toyota), and most of my toys and hobbies I go with are american-made.

I also don't feel sorry for that girl. Looking at where she came from, despite the sweat-shop conditions, she is likely better off now than should would have been toiling away in rice paddies and looking like a crinkly raisin by the age of 35. Yes, I definitely understand that I am privileged myself, and I thank the universe for the gifts and life that I have, but this little documentary is nothing new, nothing surprising, nothing that most people (who care to know these things) don't already know about.

synthesis66
06-26-07, 09:24 PM
DemonD,
Do you feel better now? You're right about one thing, we've known about this for over 150 years. Any way you slice it, the vast majority of humans appear to be greedy bastards; always have been, always will be.

DanielLCharts
06-29-07, 03:01 AM
I also don't feel sorry for that girl. Looking at where she came from, despite the sweat-shop conditions, she is likely better off now than should would have been toiling away in rice paddies and looking like a crinkly raisin by the age of 35. Yes, I definitely understand that I am privileged myself, and I thank the universe for the gifts and life that I have, but this little documentary is nothing new, nothing surprising, nothing that most people (who care to know these things) don't already know about.

Your argument is based on the false premise that it's impossible for the young woman to have more than two choices: either she is picking rice or working in the walmart sweatshop under slightly less horrific conditions. This sort of immature reasoning would also lead us to conclude that we should feel no pity for third degree burn victims should because at least they didn't die.

Perhaps you intended to say, it does make you feel a bit sorry that her work is so grueling and the compensation is so low, but we should at least be thankful that she has a better alternative to the rice paddy work, and we are hoping for even more progress so she doesn't have to live such a crappy existence? I don't mean to put words in your mouth, but they seem to be more suited than the foot that's currently their place.

don
06-29-07, 03:12 PM
I did think this was a pretty soft piece, custom made to dribble a few liberal tears. What's of much greater interest is the pressure on China to increase the workers' share of the pie and the suspicious China-import bashing
currently underway here. The items selected alone may be the tell.

Pet Food: Americans may remain for the most part blissfully ignorant of what's being done to them but harm their pets...Katie, bar the door.

Lead in Toys and unsafe SUV tires: These should be together. Call it the Soccer Mom Big Combo. If cell phones came from China, just think of the brain tumors we'd be hearing about.

metalman
06-29-07, 03:29 PM
I did think this was a pretty soft piece, custom made to dribble a few liberal tears. What's of much greater interest is the pressure on China to increase the workers' share of the pie and the suspicious China-import bashing
currently underway here. The items selected alone may be the tell.

Pet Food: Americans may remain for the most part blissfully ignorant of what's being done to them but harm their pets...Katie, bar the door.

Lead in Toys and unsafe SUV tires: These should be together. Call it the Soccer Mom Big Combo. If cell phones came from China, just think of the brain tumors we'd be hearing about.

i agree. too many complaints all at once. smells like we're getting softened up for China's retaliation for the treasury finally labeling China a "currency manipulator" as US law requires. maybe hank paulson will throw in "pet killing currency manipulator."

jk
06-29-07, 07:13 PM
i agree. too many complaints all at once. smells like we're getting softened up for China's retaliation for the treasury finally labeling China a "currency manipulator" as US law requires. maybe hank paulson will throw in "pet killing currency manipulator."
anyone remember the "epidemic" of ritual satanic child sexual abuse? some accusations in california, then suddenly it was all over the country. devil worship looked like it was emerging as a major cultural trend.

this is just the way the msm works. one story generates a splash and there'll me a multitude of similar stories until interest dies down. pets, toothpaste and mouthwash in panama, lead paint, toothpaste in the u.s., tires, seafood..... these stories of course have additional traction because of american workers' anxieties about their jobs. but these stories also carry real information about how globalization makes us dependent on the industrial practices of foreign lands.

when i was a kid, "made in japan" meant cheap junk. the meaning of "made in china" is up for grabs.

DemonD
06-29-07, 09:05 PM
The ceramic plates that my parents gave to me when I moved out, that they had gotten in 1975, say "made in china" on the back.

I wonder what happened to the person or people who made my plates? Does anyone know what happens to the 40-60 year old crowd in china if they are worn out from hard labor jobs? This is a serious question, as I've never seen a documentary on those people, who would ostensibly be in the same generation as US baby boomers.

DanielLCharts
06-29-07, 10:52 PM
Elderly Chinese don't rely on the government. They prepare by saving and their kids send them money.


The ceramic plates that my parents gave to me when I moved out, that they had gotten in 1975, say "made in china" on the back.

I wonder what happened to the person or people who made my plates? Does anyone know what happens to the 40-60 year old crowd in china if they are worn out from hard labor jobs? This is a serious question, as I've never seen a documentary on those people, who would ostensibly be in the same generation as US baby boomers.

zoog
06-30-07, 12:58 AM
There was a four-part documentary on PBS a while back called China from the Inside (http://www.pbs.org/kqed/chinainside/) (I recommend watching if you can find it). One of the episodes focused primarily on rural women, especially younger women who have left to go work in the cities. They send back money to their families, and go back to see their own children, as well as their parents and others, once or twice a year.

China today, at least rural China, still adheres to a societal construct once common all over the world where, as the patriarchs of the family become too old to work, the younger generations of the family take care of them for the rest of their lives. This respect for elders, and personal responsibility for their wellbeing (rather than expecting the government and society at large to take on this role) has all but disappeared here in America, as far as I can tell. One might argue that recent generations of elders have been getting all the respect they deserve... but I think that argument comes more out of selfishness in the younger generations than any lack of elder wisdom, leadership, and thoughtful diplomacy in the older generations. Of course, I may change my mind as the Boomers retire.:rolleyes:

jk
06-30-07, 10:55 AM
the lack of gov't programs for healthcare or retirement is a major impetus for china's high savings rate.

question for those knowledgeable about china: what happens to the practice of the elderly relying on offspring for support when the 1-child policy shrinks the pool of supporters to 1/4 the size of supportees? [4 grandparents produce 1 grandchild. these demographics make the u.s. social security funding problem look like a cakewalk.]

DanielLCharts
07-02-07, 12:13 PM
question for those knowledgeable about china: what happens to the practice of the elderly relying on offspring for support when the 1-child policy shrinks the pool of supporters to 1/4 the size of supportees? [4 grandparents produce 1 grandchild. these demographics make the u.s. social security funding problem look like a cakewalk.]

Although I live in the city where this documentary was filmed, I am not that knowledgeable about China. I can offer a guess about what happens to such families: the parents work until they die. In Shenzhen, a very young city in general, it's not uncommon to see unskilled 70 year-olds selling items such as fruits and vegetables streetside.