Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Does U.S. Big Business want a Democratic China?

I'm loving the WaPo this morning. Harold Meyerson reveals how "tepid" reforms relating to "worker's rights" have been significantly weakened. This has apparently occurred after various Big Mules like General Electric, Microsoft, Dell, Ford ... via the American Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai and the U.S.-China Business Council worked their magic. Here's his close:
First, about one-fourth of the global labor force is in China. Opposing steps toward the formation of unions there suppresses the wages of so many workers that its effect is felt worldwide. Second, since authoritarian China remains an adversary of the United States and a backer of some genuinely dangerous authoritarian regimes, blocking even the most modest steps toward the development of a civil society and democratic rights there poses a threat to U.S. security interests. Third, since the Bush administration champions the spread of democracy globally, why hasn't it taken America's leading corporations to task for retarding democracy's growth in China? And fourth, since preserving our national security should require executives at companies such as GE to answer for their conduct, where's the House Un-American Activities Committee now that we really need it?

All ate up with populism as of late, I'm hardly surprised how the top uses the bottom. Profits over principles? Perhaps China's totalitarian regime is just the ticket for today's multi-nationals? Here's how it works today: Move the factories to China or anywhere the labor is cheap, get your accounting and much white collar work done in India or another educated yet still rising society, park the HQ in some off-shore tax haven pseudo-office, ... but leave the lobbyists in DC. How's that "invisible hand" looking now free marketeers? Peace ... or War!

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