• PRINT

Counterfeits Fuel Human Misery

January 20, 2011 4:44:00 PM UTC by cardman1968 in Lobby

When Americans buy counterfeit trade goods, they support dangerous and unfair working conditions half a world away. Tragedy is inevitable. It's a high price to pay for a pair of jeans... http://humanrights.change.org/petitions/view/gap_wrangler_abercrombie_etc_compensate_families_of_workers_burned_alive

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Kevin Dawidowicz

Kevin Dawidowicz

This is clearly a case of 'out-of-site, out-of-mind' as it is more than likely that unsafe conditions exist much more commonly than we are made aware. An educated consumer needs any tool available to them to ensure that the products and brands they support are created in safe work environments. We ask nothing less from our own work conditions, why not for those who create the products we purchase on a daily basis?

Posted January 21, 2011 3:46:28 AM UTC

andrewmgates

andrewmgates

Unfortunate and tragic, but this will inevitably continue until counterfeiting can be reigned in.

Posted January 20, 2011 11:46:30 PM UTC

Benjamin_Finkel

Benjamin_Finkel

I don't know that it's a question of capitalism, in fact I think it's just the opposite.

Maybe I'm giving people too much credit, but I'd be willing to bet that free market pressures would solve a lot of these problems if this sort of thing made a bigger splash. Just look at the problems Foxconn is having because it's employees keep jumping out of windows. If an incident like this got half as much national press attention as the guy who stuck a bomb in his drawers (which caused zero deaths) I believe that things would change pretty quick.

But instead this sort of useful information is largely kept out of the marketplace and without good information the market fails to operate properly. Because these companies have so much money and so much sway with governments and news outlets, they can very effectively keep articles like this relegated to the back pages of the paper and prevent the market from operating freely. That's not capitalism that's despotism.

Posted January 20, 2011 10:40:22 PM UTC

Mike Literman

Mike Literman

I doubt that the profit margin is so narrow that they can't spring for some sort of safety precautions. I've seen and heard stories of unsafe working conditions and it's unforgivable. I'm not asking 3rd world countries to spring for health insurance as I can't afford it myself, but knee pads, helmets, gloves, and things of that nature could go a long way.

Posted January 20, 2011 10:19:30 PM UTC

cardman1968

cardman1968

I think it's important to consider the role that American consumers play in this equation - by caring little for the source of the goods they monetize, they unwittingly encourage this. I'm guessing that the origin countries of most of these would not generally be considered capitalist.

Posted January 20, 2011 9:39:58 PM UTC

Abraham Barnes

Abraham Barnes

That's just horrid, even worse considering those conditions have existed for quite a while. I'm all for capitalism, but not at that cost.

Posted January 20, 2011 9:15:03 PM UTC

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