Of all the intellectually bankrupt, demagoguery-laden, ‘offshoring is just inexcusable’ attacks this campaign season, I think this one might just about take the cake. I have a feeling they were really waiting up to pull out something on quite this level, because if you don’t exercise any critical thinking whatsoever in processing it, it really does tug on the heartstrings.
The ad targets Mr. Romney’s links to Global-Tech Appliances, a China-based appliance company that a firm once controlled by Mr. Romney invested in.
“These appliances could have been made here in America,” the narrator says before showing a picture of an Asian man making a washing machine. “But a company called Global Tech maximized profits by paying its workers next to nothing under sweatshop conditions in China. When Mitt Romney led Bain, they saw Global Tech as a good investment.”
In 1998, Brookside Capital Partners Fund, an affiliate of Bain Capital, acquired about 6% of the firm, the Boston Globe reported last week.
I think most any non-sociopathic human being would agree that it is terrible to think on the billions of people in this world who, through no fault of their own, are born in oppressive, dictatorial, extremely poor countries, and have no choice but to scrape what living they can out of squalor and misery. Working long hours in a sweatshop certainly doesn’t seem very appealing to anyone in America, but the question is: What solutions is President Obama proposing? I haven’t heard him suggest that we swoop in and depose these (often communist/socialist/endemically corrupt) regimes and set up the democratic, free-market governments that have created the prosperous and human-rights-respecting societies in which we Westerners live. Nor do I hear him proposing that we simply cut off trade with these types of countries on principle, and a good thing, too — because that would benefit neither them nor us.
Firstly, before casting mental stones at businessmen like Mitt Romney who ‘offshore,’ we should all check the “Made in…” labels on every single item we own. Free enterprise is the most direct form of democracy there is, because we all vote with our dollars and the results are tallied quickly and efficiently. The consensus? We like to buy goods of comparable quality for as little money as we can get them. As this ad points out, of course we could make everything in America, but then everything would be much more expensive, we’d have a far less diversified economy, and we’d all be poorer. And as for these nefarious “investors” the ad talks about? If you’ve got any sort of investment-earning account like a 401k or any stake in the stock market, you probably are or would very much like to be an investor in a company like Bain, because they are great at making money.
Secondly, this ad laments that the company Romney invested in “paid its workers next to nothing” under “sweatshop conditions” — but, compared to what? What better options are we offering these Chinese workers? Because, news flash: They usually don’t have any. Merely eliminating these jobs is only going to take away another of their options and make them still poorer. The only true, penetrating solution to lifting everyone on earth out of poverty is rejecting communism, socialism, central planning, and the like, and doing business with one another helps to move us closer towards that goal.