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Fri Apr 26, 2013, 10:01 AM

Foreign Factories *Should* Be More Dangerous

That's what Matt Yglesias says over at Slate.

Bangladesh is a lot poorer than the United States, and there are very good reasons for Bangladeshi people to make different choices in this regard than Americans. That's true whether you're talking about an individual calculus or a collective calculus. Safety rules that are appropriate for the United States would be unnecessarily immiserating in much poorer Bangladesh. Rules that are appropriate in Bangladesh would be far too flimsy for the richer and more risk-averse United States. Split the difference and you'll get rules that are appropriate for nobody. The current system of letting different countries have different rules is working fine. American jobs have gotten much safer over the past 20 years, and Bangladesh has gotten a lot richer.
http://www.slate.com/blogs/moneybox/2013/04/24/international_factory_safety.html


It's incredibly frustrating to see a supposed social liberal arguing that it's good that third world countries have dangerous factories because it's an improvement over not having money. And how can you talk about it being OK for Bangladeshis to make different choices than Americans when they don't have the choices available that Americans do? Would it suddenly be OK if immigrant workers to the U.S. were treated shabbily if we simply rewrote our labor safety and minimum wage laws to exclude them? By Yglesias' reasoning, Cesar Chavez's campaigns harmed the braceros, and Ghandi was a terrorist. How the hell did we get to the point where social liberals are spouting the same sort of neoliberal Randian nonsense as William F. Buckely and George Will were spewing two and three decades ago?

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Reply Foreign Factories *Should* Be More Dangerous (Original post)
unrepentant progress Apr 2013 OP
Blue_Tires Apr 2013 #1
unrepentant progress Apr 2013 #4
Schema Thing Apr 2013 #2
Bannakaffalatta Apr 2013 #3

Response to unrepentant progress (Original post)

Fri Apr 26, 2013, 10:15 AM

1. Sounds like something Freidman would say...

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Response to Blue_Tires (Reply #1)

Fri Apr 26, 2013, 10:42 AM

4. It's the sort of reasoning that was used to sell NAFTA

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Response to unrepentant progress (Original post)

Fri Apr 26, 2013, 10:26 AM

2. this type of thinking could only be engaged in by the sort of man who has to call someone

to change a tire.

Someone who hasn't built and couldn't build anything.

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Response to unrepentant progress (Original post)

Fri Apr 26, 2013, 10:41 AM

3. because social liberals no longer exist in the wild;

 

and the ones in captivity are thoroughly brainwashed (or brain-dead?) Political thought in North America has been shifted steadily rightward for the past 40+ years; the "extreme socialist left" is now where mainstream liberals were in the 1970's.

Would it suddenly be OK if immigrant workers to the U.S. were treated shabbily if we simply rewrote our labor safety and minimum wage laws to exclude them?

Nothing sudden about it. Recent immigrants have always been treated shabbily in the American workplace; migrant workers are routinerly treated even worse and illegal immigrants are abused in conditions the average middle-class person can't even conjure in his nightmares. All globalization has done is export the same societal attitude that created sweatshops and chicken factories in the US.

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