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The True Cost of Low Prices: The Violence of Globalization

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    Available in PDF - DJVU Format | The True Cost of Low Prices: The Violence of Globalization.pdf | Language: ENGLISH
    Vincent A. Gallagher(Author)

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This book explains the basic nature of globalization, how the programs of IMF and World Bank work, the use of slave labour and the injury, disease and abuse that come from unregulated work environments worldwide.

Vincent Gallagher has spent over 30 years researching and reporting on dangerous work environments. A consultant to the World Bank, USAID and the UN as well as corporations and labour unions, he currently directs the Romero Centre at St Joseph Pro-Cathedral Parish in New Jersey.

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Book details

  • PDF | 166 pages
  • Vincent A. Gallagher(Author)
  • Orbis Books; Annotated edition edition (October 30, 2006)
  • English
  • 7
  • Politics & Social Sciences

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Review Text

  • By Diane Cunningham on September 24, 2014

    I think it is sad that this is true....well written

  • By lauren on September 26, 2012

    its a little sad but sometimes we need sad books to motivate us to be better people. definitely recommend the read

  • By Deron Dilger on October 3, 2011

    Allow me to be straight and to the point: I am glad I read Mr. Gallagher's book, and I believe the man is of good heart and pure in his intent but I was not convinced that low prices are maintained by the anecdotal violence he discusses (briefly).I found the philosophical aspects of his raised issues more meaningful and thought provoking than I found his economical arguments to be convincing. I agree that we all should do a better job of considering the use of the incredible wealth we've been bestowed with (as most Americans are rich in material wealth and a stable society due to being born in the right place at the right time more so than through their own endeavors). We surely could do more for our fellow man than we do. And I don't mean sending checks to faceless, nameless people in countries we can't even identify on a map. Mr. Gallagher has it right that more hands-on, face-to-face compassion is better for the giver and the recipient....not to mention our country.But, I found the opinions (often stated as unsupported facts) regarding the economics of "low costing" to be overly simple and logically flawed. I agree very much that physical and direct mental threats and violence are immoral and unacceptable as techniques for lowering labor costs or as means to threaten or usurp people's just freedoms and rights. And I do agree that each person who purchases items made by other people has an obligation to make a reasonable effort to understand how such items are produced and procured....and to steer clear of items that are immoral or offensive to human rights. But such determinations must largely fall to the buyer or the agents THEY respect...not overly-legislative do-gooders (who often are tyrants in disguise). This book presents some examples of such unjust treatment of workers and describes several situations where worker safety is wholly sacrificed in the name of "productivity." Yet, these in themselves fail to make the economic case that globalized trade and the (semi-)free market are the cause of the problems. In fact, many have made the claim....and in much more convincing ways (e.g. Frederic Bastiat, Henry Hazlitt, Ayn Rand).....that trade and the flow of information are better seen as solutions to these types of crimes against workers than as their cause.In summary, pick up a copy from the library and read it for an impetus to consider what YOU are doing with the wealth you have in the face of so much human suffering around the world. But make sure you don't let the guilt cloud your reasoning and fall for the shallow economic arguments without following it this book up with a more logically sound counterpoint (e.g. Economics in One Lesson: The Shortest and Surest Way to Understand Basic Economics ,Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything (P.S.))

  • By Gord Wilson on September 8, 2008

    Sam's club is being used to beat down the world. Wal-Mart used to advertise "To you from the USA". Now that slogan has subtly shifted to "To you in the USA". No one noticed. In case they did, the boxes from China that merchandise came in were carefully concealed. If that wasn't enough, they outright denied it. There's a friendly greeter at the door. How bad can it be?What if the torture techniques the media discovered being used at Guatanamo Bay were used all over the world to keep workers in line? Why wouldn't the media speak up about that? What if the hats that say CNN on them and the Nikes worn by players on ESPN were made in those sweatshops? What if instead of being the villains of the story, priests and nuns were the ones working to save the victims? Would that be a conflict of interest? Would that fail to press the media hot buttons? Or is it just to big to handle?Not only that, what if the whipping boy of the media, who also happens to be the President of the United States, was the only one who pressured China about its human rights violations? What if in China that's business as usual? The media reported the smoky air in China might be a health hazard for kids. What if it comes from factories where kids work with toxic chemicals, long hours, in virtual slavery? Where's that story?What if the real cost of pornography is that millions of girls worldwide are sexual slaves in human trafficking? Will you stop buying it? Will you vote with your wallet? Will you vote no? Now some companies are brewing fair trade coffee. Can there be fair trade manufacturing? 80 per cent of toys come from China. The words "hand painted" have come to mean not the careful, thoughtful work of an artisan, but the assembly line forced labor of a vastly underpaid indentured servant. Kids need toys, but is there a way to make them fairly in the US again? Is there a way to compromise between unions and management to bring safe manufacturing back to the US? Is there a way to help majority world/ third world nations create safe, sustainable livelihoods, and break the victims' bonds?These are some of the questions posed by this book. Arguably it's slim; this iceberg is so huge and so greatly entrenched that only the tip of it can be glimpsed in these glancing snapshots. As T.S. Eliot said, "human souls cannot bear very much reality." But, as Chesterton noted in Orthodoxy, "St. George can fight the dragon, even if the dragon is the whole world." If, as free citizens, we are enterprising, and vote with our wallets, can we restore free enterprise again?


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