For many who are blessed with wealth, the thought of homelessness and poverty may be far removed from their realm of reality. For them, these unseen “slaves” of modern society do not exist. These “ghost” workers worked behind the scenes to bring forth the luxuries in the form of iPhones, branded sports shoes and high fashion. They are so far away in another land and their existence is immaterial as long as the goodies are delivered. To them, the world is dichotomous. If you don’t belong to their world, you are just dunk. Life outside their world is not life, mere existence.
Much had been reported on the sweat shops that are ubiquitous in the poorer nations. What is reported is only the tip of the iceberg. Mega MNCs like Apple and Nike had been singled out as perpetrators of modern slavery in third world countries.The Daily Mail reports that:
Apple have opened the doors to their Chinese ‘sweatshop’ factories where employees are paid as little as £1.12 an hour.
Many of the staff perform monotonous tasks like wiping down screens or shaving aluminium from the edge of the Apple logo for ten tedious hours at a time.
And now the conditions inside the factory in Shenzhen – where 18 employees have killed themselves – can be seen, after ABC TV network were given exclusive access.
The notorious suicide by workers at Foxcon did some PR damage to Apple. But has anything changed materially? Nothing.
To put the blame on these MNCs may be a little unfair. Afterall, they bring jobs to these peasants. Having a job and food on the table is better than none at all. That argument sounds reasonable until the level of labour exploitation is understood. Why should the slaves do all the hard work and get the least rewards to the point of ridicule? Are trade pacts such as NAFTA and TPP meant to bring wealth to the masses or just an elite group? Just follow the money trail of the sponsors of such pacts, it will lead you to the answer.
The wealthier industrialised nations have to remember that life goes in cycles. Nothing lasts forever, least of all, wealth. The ghost of the 1930s depression is lurking in the background ready to spring into action. Perth Now reports,
ELEVEN men are perched 256 metres above the ground. There are no harnesses and no safety net. One false move means certain death.
It’s one of the most iconic pictures to come out of the Great Depression.
The workers — mostly immigrants desperate to feed their families — were enjoying lunch before getting back to
Sweat shops do not belong to the third world nations only. They are at the doorsteps of the rich nations. Sooner than later, that same spectre of scouring for a crumb of bread just to survive will become real. Those who has a job will be glad – just to survive for another day.
And he cried and said, Father Abraham, have mercy on me, and send Lazarus, that he may dip the tip of his finger in water, and cool my tongue; for I am tormented in this flame.