I picked up this magazine, just by accident. It had this picture of Asian people, with sewing machines, and the headline said “The True Cost.” I guess they meant the true cost of inexpensive goods, but I don’t know.
Really I should be outraged with myself, for buying inexpensive foreign-produced goods. Wait, no I shouldn’t. Did I hire someone for less than the minimum wage? Am I in charge of running Wal-mart?
I’m not, right? I’m not in charge of running Wal-mart? Let me check.
No. And they don’t like it when you try that.
Anyway, any of these places, it’s not up to me who they hire and how much they pay them. And really, you want to suggest to me that I shouldn’t shop there, and I should pay more money? Because really, what is up to me is taking care of my family.
People who say– if you take responsibility — the phrase take responsibility is very apt. If you take responsibility on for something, you take it from someone else. So if there’s, if the idea is out there that consumers are obligated to consider the source of the goods in the store when they make their buying decisions, then the people who run the stores, they can say, “Well, people don’t seem to mind if I get this cheap stuff from China. It’s what they want. It’s not my problem: if they didn’t like where I got it, they wouldn’t buy it.”
But we can say, “No, we have actually little to no idea what you are doing, since knowing what you are doing is not in any way our job, or even a thing we could do, without getting asked to leave the store, yet again.” Look at the supply chain, and find where someone’s doing something nasty. It’s not at the bottom. You’re going to tell me that I’m supposed to spend money, morally educating the CEO of Wal-mart?
That’s money taken away from the people who earned it. So then we have two bad things.
“You can’t buy the cheapest stuff,” they say. “You have to buy the right stuff. It’s just, and fair.” Trade.*
Well, no, I’d like to keep that money, thank you. It’s not up to me, how Wal-Mart is run. That’s up to Wal-Mart, and the government.
1 – care.com
2- self-citing !
*You can do it! You can NOT make that “not a fair-trade of responsibility” joke! I am rooting for you!