Friday, May 16, 2008

The Forbes article

This is the Forbes article I had mentioned to The Babysitter in response to one of her comments on my "From the modern person's perspective..."

This isn't exactly what she mentioned, as in this doesn't discuss sweatshops nor does the article discuss Wal-Mart, but it does discuss the fact that child-labor is something we cannot rid, and that the US is trying to find ways to protect kids.

I don't know if I read it in this article, but I read somewhere that if the Indian's or Mexicans, or other 3rd world-country citizens would be paid the same wages as we were, it would be as if we're sending kids to the candy shop with a credit card..they wouldn't be able to handle it. They have a certain standard of living.

Anyway, I am looking for a paper I wrote on wal-mart, I also mentioned it, to post how wal-mart is not that bad.


The Babysitter said...

That's true, there are different standards of living. For one country the lower wages are what they need to live on, while in the US it may be too low.

That's like with the conflict of Host v. Home country. When a multinational corporation does business in another country, there's a question of which way they should do business. So then if its an economic question, they have to ask themselves that if they were in the same economic situation, would they do the same stuff, if the answer is yes, then they can do it in the host country.

I didn't read the link yet though...

Dave said...

don't know if I read it in this article, but I read somewhere that if the Indian's or Mexicans, or other 3rd world-country citizens would be paid the same wages as we were, it would be as if we're sending kids to the candy shop with a credit card..they wouldn't be able to handle it. They have a certain standard of living.

That's a remarkably infantilizing statement.

It would be akin to saying that since the Jews coming to America in the late 19th and early 20th century were coming from poor countries, it was a good thing to have them work in sweatshops for little money, because they wouldn't know how to handle it if they got it.

When people get money, sometimes they spend it wisely, sometimes they spend it poorly.

Jessica said...

Wal-mart is terrible, though I know nothing about their wages for people who work there. When I went home for winter break my mom and I made a stop at Wal-mart. On our way out my mon tripped and fell really hard. She broke her elbow and was in a cast for 6 weeks. For those 6 weeks she was also not allowed to work. Wal-mart, instead of taking responsibility for the ginormous metal thing sticking out of the ground on their property denied my mother's claim saying that there was no conclusive evidence that she fell because of them. Basically, they're just hoping that she doesn't get a lawyer because if and when she does, they'll immediately settle out of court. WAL-MART SUCKS!

frumskeptic said...

dave: My mom's best friend lives in Bangledesh. She's super rich by their standards. For $10 (maybe a few dollars more now) a month she can have a chauffeur in front of her house 24/7. He switches with his brother when its bed time. If you pay them American minimum wage, wtf are they gonna do with it? They wont be able to handle it?

I dunno...maybe they'll buy some bootleg CD's?

You can't compare it.
Do I think they shold be abused? NO! Absolutely not. I think they should get fair-wages inaccordance to Bangali standards, but they def should not be getting AMERICAN minimum wage!!

Even if a NYer goes to Tennessee she'd get paid waaaaay less for hte same work. Its rather dumb to make American's pay OTHER countries the same!

Jessica: Wow that sux.

frumskeptic said...

Jessica: Meant to write that I hope your mom feels better (if she doesn't already)!!!

Dave said...

There is a difference between "the equivalent professional wage is X" and "they can't handle the money".

If I take your hypothetical New Yorker and drop them down in a part of the country where both the cost of living and the wages are lower, is it suddenly the case that the New Yorker now cannot handle more income?

That was what I was objecting to.

It's one thing to say "the prevailing wages are X" or even "we can get away with paying X so we are going to", it is the attempt to rationalize paying low wages (especially in the latter case) with "well, they couldn't handle more money anyway" that is both infantilizing and just plain wrong.

For that matter, given what people in America spend their money on (the unforuntate tendency to go deep into debt for fripperies), I could look at the illegal immigrant sending money back to pay for education, build houses, etc, and say that they appear to be better able to handle more money than the native born.

Skeeta said...

That kid-in-a-candy-store thing is only because a dollar is worth so much more in india than here.

The Babysitter said...

FrumSkeptic: I'm not sure which post this relates to, the one I'm commenting on or that other long one with all the comments. But it has to do with hiring illegal workers and paying them less.

I was wondering, what about workers who aren't 100% and are hired to do work most people won't do. Are they getting paid less? Like the lady at the library, I don't know if you ever saw her, but she doesn't seem 100% and she would go to tables picking up loose books and putting them back in the shelves they belong. She would also tell people they can't have drinks or food out and they can't use their phone. But I wonder, is she getting paid less because she's not 100%?

Then also what about those people from prison that they hire to clean the streets and pick up the garbage on the block, are they getting paid at all?

But then in a way its better for them to have jobs, if their about to be released from jail, so that they can see if their gonna behave and able to do work properly.

frumskeptic said...

babysitter: You're not allowed to discriminate on whether or not someone is "100%". they get paid the same someone else would with the job. The problem with those people, is they usually will not find themselves in high-paying jobs...not because of discrimination, but b/c their not being "100%" makes them (in many cases) unqualified to do the work that would pay them alot. But if a company pays them less for the same work, they can get into huge legal issues.

About the jail people, the ones still in jail are doing it as a form of community service probably, which may help them shorten their sentences, while others are just doing it, because theres realy no point in having able-bodied humans sitting around in cells, doing nothing. so the county or city or whatever makes them work to pay off (it costs i think like $30,000 to have a person in prison) the cost. I don't think they literally sit there and count hte hours, but generally, these guys should be doing something, and they cost the city money to keep locked away, so the city puts them to use.

But if they're already out of prison they get paid the same amount, unless ofcousrse its community service they're doing which is part of their sentence, then they're doing it for free until they fulfill whatever the judge assigned to them.

The Babysitter said...

You answered my question.