WHILE YOU WERE SLEEPING - The Price Of Poison

(11/05/2007)

By Bob Weaver

The decision by the US government and and American corporations to go global has been supported by both political parties, saying it will insure the future of American prosperity.

U.S. companies continue to outsource their production to China, move their plants there and to other "global partners" around the world.

Frighteningly, the production of America's food supply is shifting abroad.

Despite working class Americans losing millions of jobs, many in West Virginia at the low-end of the pay scale, the move is now exposing American consumers to greater safety risks.

The feds said earlier this year that only about one-percent of the products are checked at the border.

It is unclear whether Americans are upset with poisoned food, melamine-tainted pet food, toothpaste laced with anti-freeze, tainted jewelry, dangerous tires and millions of US name-brand toys with lead paint.

The product problems have sketchily been reported on mainstream media, little attention was given to the Bureau of Food and Drugs recall in October of 11 more food products from China allegedly containing formaldehyde.

Most of America's mass-media is now owned by a half-dozen corporations.

BFAD Director Leticia Barbara Gutierrez advised the public that several candies, food products and luncheon meats imported from China have tested positive for formaldehyde. It is the second such list this year.

A few industry experts say U.S. importers and corporations that do business with these factories are more to blame than the Chinese suppliers for allowing those unsafe products.

This past week a New York county asked for a recall of paper lunch bags distributed to students to promote healthy life-styles, because they likely contain heavy metal which is injurious.

In September, California officials found that 56,000 Chinese-made lunch boxes were lead-tainted, most of the boxes were given out at health fairs to promote healthy eating.

In July, the BFAD started testing 600 products imported from China after international concern was raised over food products that reportedly had high levels of toxins and industrial chemicals.

China recently closed 180 food factories after inspectors found industrial chemicals are being used in products ranging from candy to seafood. The factories were found to have been using hazardous ingredients such as formaldehyde, illegal dyes, and industrial waste.

After reports of millions of dangerous toys sold by Mattel, the company recalled 19 million toys. Sponge Bob Square Pants, Curious George, Polly Rocket, Barbie and Thomas the Tank Engine have gotten some press attention.

Health experts say childhood exposure to lead can cause learning problems, reduced intelligence, hyperactivity and attention deficit disorder.

Also recalled, 66,000 spinning tops and about 4,700 pails painted with Thomas & Friends, Curious George, and circus scenes, because paint on the wooden handles contains high levels of lead.

Also 14,000 TOBY & ME jewelry sets and about 7,900 Children's Divine Inspiration Charm Bracelets, imported by Buy-Rite Designs Inc. and made in China, lead laden.

Federal regulators asked a New Jersey company to recall up to 450,000 imported tires after an accident that killed two people last year.

The importer conceded the tires are prone to tread separation and should be pulled off the road. But a formal recall would force the tiny company to give consumers replacement tires. The cost could easily reach $50 million, and drive Foreign Tire into bankruptcy.

The dangerous tires, intended for use on pickups, sport-utility vehicles and other light trucks, were sold in the U.S. as far back as 2001 under the brand names Westlake, Telluride, Compass and YKS.

Starbucks have been using Chinese produced children's plastic cups that reportedly fracture easily, leaving sharp edges and broken pieces that pose a choking or laceration hazard to children.

In September, 675,000 Barbie accessories were recalled as the pile of tainted products from China grows into a mountain.

While this affects Barbie-maker Mattel, it is affecting Wal-Mart, the biggest distributer of China-made products.

While you were sleeping, maybe you should have asked, could we become victims of the so-called "fair trade" globalized movement?

What's "fair" about poisonous and unsafe products?.

What's fair to American workers when they are competing with $1 an hour wages with no benefits and few safety and health controls?

Some would say the answer is cheap consumer products at Wal-Mart.


Hur Herald ®from Sunny Cal
The information on these pages, to the extent the law allows, remains the exclusive property of Bob Weaver and The Hur Herald. information cannot be not be used in any type of commercial endeavor, or used on a web site without the express permission of the owner. ©Hur Herald Publishing, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017