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    Obama Gives Queen iPod Made In China By Exploited Workers

    Obama Gives Queen iPod Made In China By Exploited Workers

    Gateway Pundit, Hot Air, Jammie Wearing Fool, and others are reporting that the Obamas gave the Queen of England an iPod as a present. Putting aside the tacky nature of such a gift in this context, one point that has been overlooked is that iPods are manufactured in CHINA by exploited female workers:

    Apple’s iPods are made by mainly female workers who earn as little as £27 per month, according to a report in the Mail on Sunday yesterday.

    The report, ‘iPod City’, isn’t available online. It offers photographs taken from inside the factories that make Apple music players, situated in China and owned by Foxconn.

    The Mail visited some of these factories and spoke with staff there. It reports that Foxconn’s Longhua plant houses 200,000 workers, remarking: “This iPod City has a population bigger than Newcastle’s.”

    The report claims Longhua’s workers live in dormitories that house 100 people, and that visitors from the outside world are not permitted. Workers toil for 15-hours a day to make the iconic music player, the report claims. They earn £27 per month.

    The report reveals that the iPod nano is made in a five-storey factory (E3) that is secured by police officers.

    Another factory in Suzhou, Shanghai, makes iPod shuffles. The workers are housed outside the plant, and earn £54 per month – but they must pay for their accommodation and food, “which takes up half their salaries”, the report observes.

    A security guard told the Mail reporters that the iPod shuffle production lines are staffed by women workers because “they are more honest than male workers”.

    The manufacturer in China denies that workers toil in sweatshop conditions, but its statement is hardly reassuring:

    The company also said it has continued to make improvements to workers’ living conditions, providing safe and well-equipped dormitories complete with free laundry service, sports facilities, libraries, and other facilities.

    Apple also denies the sweatshop allegations. But whether the workers toil in sweatshops or in workers’ paradise, is beside the point.

    At least the President could have promoted U.S. manufacturing by giving something made in the U.S.A. Or does Obama think that iPods ARE made in the U.S.A.? Or perhaps this is part of his strategy to use the G-20 Summit to strengthen ties to China.
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    UPDATE: Jake Tapper is reporting that the iPod contained three Obama speeches, photos of Obama’s inauguration, and photos from the Queen’s prior visits to the U.S. I’m sure Her Majesty can’t wait to snuggle up to a fire at the castle and listen to Obama’s 2004 speech at the Democratic National Convention.

    And So It Goes In Shreveport has more iPod thoughts. She’s a teacher, so she knows. And Jammie points out the iPod included the song “Send in the Clowns.”

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    Comments


    William,

    exploitation can be measured in 2 ways:

    1) by our standards – unionized labour vs. non-union labour.

    2) the standards of the workers employed in the compound.

    Whilst not supporting the possibility of sweat shops the Chinese people seem eager to work for employers such as Apple because they are getting good money by comparison to what they were getting in prior work.

    The cries of exploitation usually come from people who are unionists. In some ways the charge is fair and correct. However, those making the charge are also judging according to a different set of standards.

    It is good to see that someone has provided a bit of extra insight about the actual working conditions 🙂

    Your points about the hypocrisy of the gift are also quite valid.

    I would comment that the gift itself is extremely tacky, especially when it included two speeches that in my view would be quite a yawn.

    I also heard that the DVDs would not work because the DVD recorders are from different zones. It was another thoughtless gift, just like the very tacky plastic helicopters given to the Brown children.

    From what I have been reading the Obamas have been ignoring that thing called Protocol. I am astounded that they have no one advising about the correct form of protocol. They seem to be going from gaffe to gaffe.

    From my point of view it is more than the hypocrisy of giving a product made in China, it is the bad taste of this pair – extremely bad taste.


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