Saturday, January 14, 2006


Maybe we should just start drinking their blood directly

From the London Independent A three-year investigation into booming export factories for companies such as Marks & Spencer and Ikea discovered the human cost of China's "economic miracle". It found an army of powerless rural migrants toiling up to 14 hours a day, almost every day. Many were allowed just one day off a month and paid less than £50 a month for shifts that breached Chinese law and International Labour Organisation rules. I'm not sure why they call China "communist." It's monopoly capitalism not very different from our own Gilded Age (granted, we did hold elections. But it was dollar democracy-- one dollar, one vote): Companies are attracted to doing business in the People's Republic of China because of its low-tax development zones, cut-price abundant workforce, and totalitarianism. Independent trade unions are banned by the Communist Party. Assembly-line personnel in free-trade zones in south China operate machinery without safety guards and spray paint with inadequate face masks. ..."They were sharing 12 men to a room. Literally they had a box to themselves, like the boxes you see in the films of the concentration camps. The washing facilities were a cold water tap on a balcony. The wages were something like ... £1 a day." And the result? ...Figures published this week showed that China's trade surplus with the rest of the world more than tripled to $102bn (£58bn) last year, as its exports outstripped imports.
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