Foxconn is a massive company that manufactures electronics for many, many companies (including Apple)
I'm going to borrow the term used for Real Madrid vs Barcelona football matches for this flavor of thread.
Around 300 workers at a Foxconn plant climbed on to the roof and threatened to commit suicide over pay-cuts, conditions, and lack of compensation. Is enough being done for the workers?
When 300 men and women climb onto a rooftop and threaten to commit suicide in protest over denied compensation, it is impossible not to wonder how a company could lead its employees into such desperation.
But Foxconn did.
A little over a week ago, 300 employees at Foxconn’s Technology Park in Wuhan, China threatened their own lives because they were denied a vital pay increase. Foxconn told them they could either keep their jobs without it, or they could quit and be compensated.
Many chose to quit, but the company terminated the agreement, and none of the former workers received the promised compensation.
Production at the company was temporarily halted. It was not until 9 pm the next day that the town’s mayor was able to talk the 300 down from the roof.
"Of the legal jobs available, picking tomatoes is at the very bottom of the economic ladder. I came into this book chronicling a case of slavery in southwestern Florida that came to light in 2007 and 2008. And it was shocking. I'm not talking about near-slavery or slavery-like conditions. I'm talking about abject slavery. These were people who were bought and sold. These were people who were shackled in chains at night or locked in the back of produce trucks with no sanitary facilities all night.
Per capita gross domestic product and family income have each jumped more than 45 percent since 2000, according to one prominent economist, Roberto Newell. Despite all the depictions of Mexico as “nearly a failed state,” he argued, “the conventional wisdom is wrong.”
Apple doesn't hire Foxconn so that its workers can commit suicide. No company that hires Foxconn to make Android phones does so, in order that its workers kill themselves. Not even Google-Motorola.
Of course, in the eighties and nineties, when the PC folks would all hurf durf at me over my spending way, way too much money on my stupid little Mac, which won't even run DOS, for Pete's sake, mine was made in a high-tech, humane, domestic factory staffed by reasonably well-paid adults, while everyone's Packard Bell metal boxes the size of freight containers and components for their build-it-yourself-and-maybe-it'll-work homemade no-name PCs were made, you know, elsewhere. You expect everything in the world to be cheap and you get exactly what you ask for, which is slaves, misery, and exploitation.
The fact is that other than rail about how bad this is we don't do anything about it and we keep shopping a Amazon, Wal-Mart, Apple, etc. Why? Because we like cheap shit.
Mike Daisy and people like him are moral leeches. There are massive forces working to improve working conditions for Chinese workers, driven almost entirely by the choices made by Chinese factory owners, choices made by Chinese factory workers, choices made by consumers around the world
2. The "raising the Chinese standard of living" argument is horseshit. They happen to be the main beneficiaries right now. But it won't last. Business is already shifting wholesale to places like Vietnam. It's not like we haven't witnessed this before - where are all the Mexican macquilladoras now? Gone. Because Mexican workers became "too expensive". Hah. Fool me once...
The Atlantic looks at the rough cost of an iPad manufactured in the US. About $1,100, if you want to maintain the margin.
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