Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitude

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Dauric » Fri Oct 21, 2011 4:49 pm UTC

Dark567 wrote:Even with ideal and perfect markets I am not sure his point is true. Sometimes it is the most profitable for companies to pay and treat employees like shit even when all parties have perfect information and ideal competition.


It's hard to know, given the lack of perfect data to evaluate. Like you said it depends on industry. I would expect it to be more likely in things like retail where the worker comes in contact with customers, but warehouse laborers on the other hand don't come in contact with the customers so creepy forced happiness doesn't impact customer relations and sales numbers.
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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Zamfir » Fri Oct 21, 2011 4:54 pm UTC

There's no reason to think that 'perfect' markets in the economist's sense would be just and fair. Or, for that matter, that capitalism could exist with such markets.

They're just a fairy tale. Like the mythical emperor who would surely improve the lives of his subjects, if he only knew of their plight.

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Game_boy » Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:14 pm UTC

Zamfir wrote:There's no reason to think that 'perfect' markets in the economist's sense would be just and fair. Or, for that matter, that capitalism could exist with such markets.

They're just a fairy tale. Like the mythical emperor who would surely improve the lives of his subjects, if he only knew of their plight.


Agreed. Was responding to the claim that harsh cost-cutting is always beneficial to a company. I edited to say B could win, of course you can't tell whether A or B would do better automatically.
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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Ghostbear » Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:28 pm UTC

Zamfir wrote:There's no reason to think that 'perfect' markets in the economist's sense would be just and fair. Or, for that matter, that capitalism could exist with such markets.

They're just a fairy tale. Like the mythical emperor who would surely improve the lives of his subjects, if he only knew of their plight.

The idea of perfect markets should be looked at in the same way other idealisms used for teaching the basics of complex subjects are looked at. Using territory familiar to me, it's the same as a wire with no power loss and 0 transmission delay, or an OpAmp with infinite input resistance, a surface with 0 kinetic or static friction... They're all impossible, but happen to make sense when used as a tool for teaching something that would otherwise be dependent on the factors that the ideal removes (and would become significantly more complicated otherwise).

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Belial » Fri Oct 21, 2011 11:53 pm UTC

Except there's no reason to believe that even the mythical perfect market would do that. It just seems like wishful thinking. People want to believe that a perfect capitalism will act to optimize goodness, but that's not what it's for. It's for optimizing profit. It's like saying that a wire with no power loss and zero transmission delay would program your vcr and make perfect oven fries every time
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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby cjmcjmcjmcjm » Sat Oct 22, 2011 12:59 am UTC

I have a friend that worked with a temp agency in a job for two days. She left on the second day due to a panic attack caused by finding out that she'd have to work overtime with about 5 minutes left on her shift due to being behind on production. Yeah, those jobs are all shit. I've got another friend who works a call centre and the only reason why she stays sane is that she works with business customers rather than the general rabble. The more we advance in robotics, the less we'll have to worry about them.
Another thing I've got issues with are unpaid intern-ships without as much as a housing stipend.
Ghostbear wrote:
Zamfir wrote:There's no reason to think that 'perfect' markets in the economist's sense would be just and fair. Or, for that matter, that capitalism could exist with such markets.

They're just a fairy tale. Like the mythical emperor who would surely improve the lives of his subjects, if he only knew of their plight.

The idea of perfect markets should be looked at in the same way other idealisms used for teaching the basics of complex subjects are looked at. Using territory familiar to me, it's the same as a wire with no power loss and 0 transmission delay, or an OpAmp with infinite input resistance, a surface with 0 kinetic or static friction... They're all impossible, but happen to make sense when used as a tool for teaching something that would otherwise be dependent on the factors that the ideal removes (and would become significantly more complicated otherwise).

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Ghostbear » Sat Oct 22, 2011 2:52 pm UTC

Belial wrote:Except there's no reason to believe that even the mythical perfect market would do that. It just seems like wishful thinking. People want to believe that a perfect capitalism will act to optimize goodness, but that's not what it's for. It's for optimizing profit. It's like saying that a wire with no power loss and zero transmission delay would program your vcr and make perfect oven fries every time

I don't disagree with that; I feel people focus far too much on profit and GDP being an overwhelmingly good thing for everyone everywhere ever. I see the end result as far far more important. To steal from Bhutan's former King Jigme Signye Wangchuck (incidentally, that is one hell of a name), we should care far more about gross domestic happiness. Profit is only good so long as it helps, on both a societal and individual level, make people happier, healthier, safer, etc. Eventually, diminishing returns are reached, then the people being made "happier" are gaining so little from that extra profit, and the people it is being squeezed from are losing so much "happiness", that it becomes a negative. I would be far more impressed if economists and the like focused on finding those ideal points, instead of just mumbling something about free markets and the invisible hand. I believe France, for example (people more knowledgeable on France, feel free to tell me how little I know), has mandated 4 day work weeks with no overtime. Despite this, I believe France tends to rank not that far below the US on happiness rankings (flawed as such measures might be), while also have a much better GINI coefficient (32.7 vs 45, lower is better).

That tangent aside, an anecdote to reinforce my earlier point: during my college economics class, they never focused on how perfect competition, with perfect information, was flat out 100% impossible. In contrast, my engineering classes made damn sure we knew that wires do have transmission delay, they do have power loss (and all the variables that implies.. inductance and capacitance and resistance per unit length), that all the factors that we "ideal" out of our equations actually are there in the real world, and we will be expected to deal with them. But when you're handling a circuit built on a breadboard with resistors that have a variance of +10%, the delay caused by your 3 inch wires is completely trivial, not to mention besides the point of whatever the specific circuit is attempting to teach you. Likewise, I could see perfect competition possibly being sufficient in to model for, say, a bake sale, or something similar. Once you start talking about real economies, (or complicated circuits), then you need to take off the training wheels, and realize that perfect competition (or a perfect wire) is a fairly tale.

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Sunshine! » Sat Oct 22, 2011 4:05 pm UTC

Ghostbear: If your introductory college economics classes failed to mention that perfect competition is impossible, that's the failing of whichever professor was teaching that course, not of economics in general. Economists are well aware of the issues of assuming perfect competition, and a great deal of effort is being put into research that involves heterogeneous firms in imperfect markets in macroeconomics, and imperfect competition with imperfect information between large firms in an oligopolistic framework in microeconomics.

Belial: Perfect competition actually does maximize "goodness" as you put it, by maximizing consumer and producer surplus within whatever other economic framework you're looking at it. The technical terminology is that it maximizes producer and consumer surplus in terms of monetary value. It makes no judgement as to the nature of the jobs or the inherent happiness of the people, but between two economies that contain people of equal happiness, one with perfect competition and the other with something else, the perfectly competitive country will provide for its citizens far more efficiently. By that notion, perfect competition is "better" than any other kind of competition.

Additionally Ghostbear, one of your main points regarding gross national happiness is flawed; high income countries tend to be happier than low income countries, and low income people tend to be less happy than those with a viable living income. Brief source:http://www.oecd.org/document/10/0,3746,en_2649_201185_48791306_1_1_1_1,00.html. If this is the case, maximizing profits is not a bad pursuit, and the issue lies in the inequality of the distribution of the wealth and not having proper worker protections to allow individuals free time. Back to the point about perfect competition; if we lived in a perfectly competitive market, we wouldn't see the growth of wealth inequality that we do now because regardless of the size of any given firm, that firm still makes zero pure economic profit, so in essence everyone is getting the same wage, with the only inequality coming from the question of how productive a given laborer is, and how long they work.

On top of that, there is quite a lot of work being done with regards to other avenues of research in economics. One of the big ones for human welfare measurement is the multi-dimensional poverty index: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multi-dimensional_Poverty_Index

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby omgryebread » Sat Oct 22, 2011 4:23 pm UTC

Ghostbear wrote:That tangent aside, an anecdote to reinforce my earlier point: during my college economics class, they never focused on how perfect competition, with perfect information, was flat out 100% impossible. In contrast, my engineering classes made damn sure we knew that wires do have transmission delay, they do have power loss (and all the variables that implies.. inductance and capacitance and resistance per unit length), that all the factors that we "ideal" out of our equations actually are there in the real world, and we will be expected to deal with them. But when you're handling a circuit built on a breadboard with resistors that have a variance of +10%, the delay caused by your 3 inch wires is completely trivial, not to mention besides the point of whatever the specific circuit is attempting to teach you. Likewise, I could see perfect competition possibly being sufficient in to model for, say, a bake sale, or something similar. Once you start talking about real economies, (or complicated circuits), then you need to take off the training wheels, and realize that perfect competition (or a perfect wire) is a fairly tale.
I agree with Sunshine! that it's a failing that your professor didn't mention it, but it's unreasonable to compare economics to engineering in this regard. We have formulas for transmission delay and power loss. We know exactly how those work, and how to account for them. We don't have anything approaching that in economics. No economist can tell you the exact effect of consumer confidence, or can give you a formula to determine how risk averse investors will be in a given time frame.
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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Ghostbear » Sat Oct 22, 2011 4:53 pm UTC

Sunshine! wrote:Ghostbear: If your introductory college economics classes failed to mention that perfect competition is impossible, that's the failing of whichever professor was teaching that course, not of economics in general. Economists are well aware of the issues of assuming perfect competition, and a great deal of effort is being put into research that involves heterogeneous firms in imperfect markets in macroeconomics, and imperfect competition with imperfect information between large firms in an oligopolistic framework in microeconomics.

Belial: Perfect competition actually does maximize "goodness" as you put it, by maximizing consumer and producer surplus within whatever other economic framework you're looking at it. The technical terminology is that it maximizes producer and consumer surplus in terms of monetary value. It makes no judgement as to the nature of the jobs or the inherent happiness of the people, but between two economies that contain people of equal happiness, one with perfect competition and the other with something else, the perfectly competitive country will provide for its citizens far more efficiently. By that notion, perfect competition is "better" than any other kind of competition.

Additionally Ghostbear, one of your main points regarding gross national happiness is flawed; high income countries tend to be happier than low income countries, and low income people tend to be less happy than those with a viable living income. Brief source:http://www.oecd.org/document/10/0,3746,en_2649_201185_48791306_1_1_1_1,00.html. If this is the case, maximizing profits is not a bad pursuit, and the issue lies in the inequality of the distribution of the wealth and not having proper worker protections to allow individuals free time. Back to the point about perfect competition; if we lived in a perfectly competitive market, we wouldn't see the growth of wealth inequality that we do now because regardless of the size of any given firm, that firm still makes zero pure economic profit, so in essence everyone is getting the same wage, with the only inequality coming from the question of how productive a given laborer is, and how long they work.

On top of that, there is quite a lot of work being done with regards to other avenues of research in economics. One of the big ones for human welfare measurement is the multi-dimensional poverty index: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Multi-dimensional_Poverty_Index


I didn't say they didn't teach it; they didn't focus on it. Maybe I've just gotten the wrong impression, but most times people mention perfect competition, it seems to me that they feel it's actually attainable. I was using the anecdote of my class as an example of maybe it not being reinforced strongly enough that it truly isn't attainable. I felt the professor did a good job with the class overall, but that maybe, if other economics classes did the same thing, and failed to reinforce it, that might be where the problem I perceived comes from.

As for the other point: yes, I know higher income tends to cause greater happiness, I do not dispute or disagree with that in the slightest. I think that it's the overwhelming pursuit that is the issue, as there are obviously diminishing returns that you eventually reach, as well as being a trade-off for it. If working conditions become absolutely horrendous for 99.9% of the population, but median income jumps from $40k / year to $80k / year, people could very well be less happy overall. Such as my example with France, I don't know how their personal incomes rate, but I'd assume that the 4 day work week lowered their overall economic success, and in turn, personal income, but possibly worked out better for people, happiness wise.

I probably (almost certainly?) stated it poorly, but I was more trying to say that I think talk of profit and GDP and everything in that vein can sometimes miss the point that they aren't (or at least, shouldn't be) goals in and of themselves: we are (or should be) trying to attain them in order to benefit people.

omgryebread wrote:I agree with Sunshine! that it's a failing that your professor didn't mention it, but it's unreasonable to compare economics to engineering in this regard. We have formulas for transmission delay and power loss. We know exactly how those work, and how to account for them. We don't have anything approaching that in economics. No economist can tell you the exact effect of consumer confidence, or can give you a formula to determine how risk averse investors will be in a given time frame.

As stated above, they did teach it, it just wasn't focused on. As for the engineering examples, I use them solely because that's what I'm familiar with. I do agree that economics has it's own issues with getting "exactness" (for lack of a better term), due to the fact that in the end, it relies on the actions of individuals. It's an issue they have to deal with, and I do not envy it. All the same, I don't think comparing Perfect Competition to Ideal Wires is unreasonable: both are learning tools, meant to remove more complicated factors that are unnecessary for the learning of basic concepts.

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Sunshine! » Sat Oct 22, 2011 5:49 pm UTC

I phrased what I was saying poorly as well. The typical assumption is that firms and agents act rationally; firms maximize profits, and agents maximize utility (usually based on consumption and either utility form leisure or disutility form labor). Within a perfectly competitive framework, where each firm and each agent have no bargaining power, agents can pretty much choose to work as much as they want to maximize their utility.

In a more real-world applicable case, firms in general have bargaining power (much more so in a recession, much less in a boom), while only your experienced specialists generally have any bargaining power as workers. The issue then becomes that businesses can force workers to work longer for less pay, which I guess might be okay if the businesses (like banks, oil) weren't making record profits. This is why I say worker protections are important.

On the other hand, worker protections can't be too strong, since they correlate strongly with lower employment rates, part of the reason why the US tends to have lower structural unemployment than European nations. In an economy like ours currently, for industries that aren't banking and oil, such regulations can be crippling.

The issue with maximizing gross national happiness then becomes an employment problem (since most people would prefer to work more than they'd like to consume, rather than not work and have all the leisure they want but also be homeless and starving), along with the notion that being a large, competitive economy has happiness ramifications in its own right. Bhutan will never be a superpower, is an underdeveloped country, and has not developed a consumerist culture, so this kind of experiment is viable for them. For the US, culturally I think happiness is strongly linked with consumption and technology (iPhones, etc.); there's growing disenchantment with the "consumerist" part, but it's hypocritical given how many anti-corporate hippies (loose generalization) you see wandering around with macbooks, iPhones and Starbucks. Consumer-oriented technological progress is much more difficult in a non-capitalist system though, so even though there's anger at corporate corruption and the like, the capitalist system we have has largely allowed the US, as a general culture, to drive itself towards its own definition of maximizing gross national happiness.

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Dauric » Sat Oct 22, 2011 6:07 pm UTC

The problem is less that economists hold up the idea of ideal markets and perfect conditions, real economists have taken more than "Intro to Economics", but rather that politicians and policymakers driven by economic dogmas hold up Econ 101 demonstrative hypothetical situations as proof of the accuracy of their dogma.
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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Vash » Sat Oct 22, 2011 10:13 pm UTC

Gotta get indentured servants from somewhere.

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Zamfir » Sun Oct 23, 2011 2:36 pm UTC

Sunshine! wrote:Belial: Perfect competition actually does maximize "goodness" as you put it, by maximizing consumer and producer surplus within whatever other economic framework you're looking at it. The technical terminology is that it maximizes producer and consumer surplus in terms of monetary value. It makes no judgement as to the nature of the jobs or the inherent happiness of the people, but between two economies that contain people of equal happiness, one with perfect competition and the other with something else, the perfectly competitive country will provide for its citizens far more efficiently. By that notion, perfect competition is "better" than any other kind of competition.

You're overselling your case quite a bit here. For one thing, the best that perfect competition promises is pareto-optimality, and it is crazy to equate that to a general "maximum goodness". It's Pareto-optimal when all production in the world goes to Scrooge McDuck.

But beyond that, there is no reason why a move from a currently existing market to a more "perfect" market is necessarily a pareto-improving move. The factors that cause the deviation from perfect competition might well be production- or welfare-enhancing factors, so nothing guarantees that a removal of an imperfection will be an improvement in any sense.

Economies of scale are the clearest example. They are a killing blow for perfect competition, but it is silly to imply that we are worse off because of them. And this affects homogenity of course. The real world has a finite number of sellers, and it's not attractive if lots of those are selling (or producing) the same product. It means less choice for buyers, and it's boring for the producers who can't put something special in their products.. In general, both producers and consumers like originality in their products.

In the same way, imperfect information is usually a good thing. No one wants to be an expert on everything they might consider buying. For most people, a good market is a market where they can reliably expect good deals without a need to be well-informed.

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Sunshine! » Sun Oct 23, 2011 3:25 pm UTC

Zamfir: I'm not overselling my case at all. Yes, the best it promises is Pareto Optimality, but total welfare under perfect competition will be higher than under another form of competition that includes deadweight loss from a firm being able to produce distortions based on market power. Everything else held equal, perfect competition is "best" for society. Because perfect competition removes all deadweight loss, it is necessarily a Pareto improvement.

I am also just talking from a pure theory perspective and have never claimed that perfect competition is an attainable goal. That being said, if one applied the notions of perfect competition (that is, marginal profits equal marginal costs for zero economic profits; no capability to set prices or wages), and applied it even in the case of economies of scale, you'd probably see Pareto improvements. One notable example is a Bertrand (firms compete in prices) duopoly with homogeneous products. Even though there's only two firms (and therefore an argument could be made that we are experiencing economies of scale in this case), because of the way the competition is structured they end up functioning at a level equivalent to perfect competition in contrast to Cournot (firms compete over quantity) competition, which functions less efficiently than perfect competition but more efficiently than monopoly.

Again, from a theory perspective, imperfect information is never a good thing. It is imperfect information that would require a person to take time to investigate the market and goods. A market of perfect information (again, a practical impossibility) will necessarily function "better" in the sense that all agents will be able to behave optimally without requiring any research into the quality of goods or the functioning of the market.

If you want to look at a case of theory being turned on its head, one of the major ones that can be brought up is technological progress. Technological progress is a very difficult proposition in a perfectly competitive market because nobody is making economic profits to reinvest in research, so if one were to consider that in their theoretical framework it might turn out that oligopolistic competition (or even monopolies) will prove to be a Pareto improvement on perfect competition in the long run.

Edit: One other thing to look at with regards to perfect markets and perfect competition in a theoretical macroeconomic framework is that, given perfect information and no distortions (like taxation), a benevolent social planner whose goal is to maximize societal welfare (and has complete control over the economy) will choose the exact same allocations of everything as the competitive market would. Once you start adding in distortions, however, the social planner will begin selecting different allocations meaning that the social planner will provide higher welfare than the competitive market but will not provide a Pareto optimal allocation because some people are being made strictly worse off with the reallocations. The main point is, however, that in a perfect theoretical economic system with no distortions, a perfectly competitive market will maximize societal welfare and be Pareto optimal.

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Princess Marzipan » Sun Oct 23, 2011 6:46 pm UTC

Sunshine! wrote:For the US, culturally I think happiness is strongly linked with consumption and technology (iPhones, etc.); there's growing disenchantment with the "consumerist" part, but it's hypocritical given how many anti-corporate hippies (loose generalization) you see wandering around with macbooks, iPhones and Starbucks.
Every time I see this fallacy being uttered, I am exactly as frustrated as the last time.

If you're going to point at someone who decries consumerism but then waits in line at an Apple Store every time a new product is released, and call THEM a hypocrite, I'm with you.

If you're going to point at someone who decries consumerism while walking around with an Apple product or two, and call THEM a hypocrite, I think you're ignoring a lot of factors. First, you have no idea where any individual anti-corporate hippie got their Apple junk. It could be a hand-me-down, it could have been provided/rewarded by an employer, it could have been obtained by a student offered a discount when starting college, it could have been any number of things. It is, of course, fairly likely the product was purchased normally. You're forgetting that maybe that anti-corporate hippy was in a happy consumerist daze until a few weeks or months ago and is just now reworking their worldview and trying to figure out how to live a limitedly consumerist lifestyle after going along with the consumerist culture for year.

Most importantly, you're forgetting that having deep moral issues with the climate and culture surrounding a given product's development can in fact be separate from recognizing that product's usefulness and applications. There are differences amongst remaining ignorant (perhaps willfully, perhaps not) of how a product comes to exist, being aware of how a product comes to exist and being content to simply enjoy the end result of the various exploitations involved, and having similar knowledge and putting effort toward changing the underlying framework that considers the ends of the iProduct to be worth the means of a multitude of hidden exploitative practices.

tl;dr uh no.
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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Sunshine! » Sun Oct 23, 2011 7:20 pm UTC

I didn't make myself clear on the subject of "consumerism," but I did append (loose generalization) to what I said. However, in the future, I will try to make my comments as specific as possible and cover all possible contingencies and... oh wait, that'll make my posts completely unreadable and I'll have to write tl;dr at the end of every one of them (which is why I say "loose generalization" to skirt the point so that you can fill in the blanks with what I mean without me having to explain in exhaustive detail. Didn't you have a problem with that whole "can't cover everything in exhaustive detail" problem in a constitutional amendment you tried to write recently?)

With regards to your specific point, where I'm from those two groups overlap almost completely because Apple has managed to brand itself as the counter-cultural technological innovator. Which brings me to my next point...

... branding. Again, I should've made this more clear, and I didn't because I was only covering it in passing, but how I see it the major aspect of consumerism is branding. If you're consumerist, you don't just go out and buy new jeans, you buy the newest trendy brand of jeans, or whatever soft drink the Kardashians are drinking these days, or whatever new music on the radio has been branded as trendy. Brands drive consumerism; saying "Oh, I got a new smartphone" is kind of blah, but you say, "Oh, I got the new iPhone" and everyone's all "wow! How is it? Can I touch it?" What percentage of people who buy Mac products do you think actually care more about the specs compared to competitor's specs, than about the brand and the shiny white case?

So when I say growing disenchantment, I'm referring to people growing disenchanted with always being told (by advertising) what to buy, what to wear, how to look, and the like, and how that all has a major impact on many people's psyches. Which, when taken with the above two cases... people buying Apple for the brand (when any smartphone would suffice), because it's managed to cement its image as countercultural (even though at one point recently it had more money than the U.S government), is kind of... strange?

tl;dr lol you're funny

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby ShuRugal » Mon Oct 24, 2011 3:30 am UTC

Jahoclave wrote:What I really love is that their defense is: this is how we do things in America.

Wow, raging fucking endorsement of the country that is.

Welcome to America, we treat everybody like a worthless piece of shit.



Well, it's true isn't it? He said he wanted to see how life works in america, well, here it is: You get paid just enough to have roof, some food, and the ability to work. Where's my New-York Times Intervention?

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby CorruptUser » Mon Oct 24, 2011 5:26 am UTC

ShuRugal wrote:
Jahoclave wrote:What I really love is that their defense is: this is how we do things in America.

Wow, raging fucking endorsement of the country that is.

Welcome to America, we treat everybody like a worthless piece of shit.



Well, it's true isn't it? He said he wanted to see how life works in america, well, here it is: You get paid just enough to have roof, some food, and the ability to work. Where's my New-York Times Intervention?


Wait a sec, you really don't think the rest of the world doesn't treat their unskilled workers like shit? I could go the easy route and point to Dubai, Saudi Arabia, Russia, China, or just about any other "developing" country, but I like a challenge; Britain does the same crap to the Polish. And this isn't getting into the hell that is human trafficking/kidnapping in Europe's sex trade (or the US, or Japan).

At least in the US (and in Europe and probably Korea and Japan), if your employers treat you like shit there is potential recourse. At least this story made it to the press, which is why we are talking about it.

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Vash » Mon Oct 24, 2011 6:45 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:Wait a sec, you really don't think the rest of the world doesn't treat their unskilled workers like shit? I could go the easy route and point to Dubai, Saudi Arabia, Russia, China, or just about any other "developing" country, but I like a challenge; Britain does the same crap to the Polish. And this isn't getting into the hell that is human trafficking/kidnapping in Europe's sex trade (or the US, or Japan).

At least in the US (and in Europe and probably Korea and Japan), if your employers treat you like shit there is potential recourse. At least this story made it to the press, which is why we are talking about it.


Really? I'm inclined to believe we aren't talking about it at all.

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby The Mighty Thesaurus » Mon Oct 24, 2011 1:36 pm UTC

the_bandersnatch wrote:I'd recommend boycotting Hershey's also on account of their chocolate tasting like cocoa mixed with sawdust.

That's because they are cocoa mixed with sawdust.
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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby ShuRugal » Mon Oct 24, 2011 1:45 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:
Wait a sec, you really don't think the rest of the world doesn't treat their unskilled workers like shit? I could go the easy route and point to Dubai, Saudi Arabia, Russia, China, or just about any other "developing" country, but I like a challenge; Britain does the same crap to the Polish. And this isn't getting into the hell that is human trafficking/kidnapping in Europe's sex trade (or the US, or Japan).



Oh, the rest of the world certainly does treat their workers the same way. That's my point. The Democratic Peoples Republic of North America is no better than the rest of the world.

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Vash » Mon Oct 24, 2011 2:11 pm UTC

The Mighty Thesaurus wrote:
the_bandersnatch wrote:I'd recommend boycotting Hershey's also on account of their chocolate tasting like cocoa mixed with sawdust.

That's because they are cocoa mixed with sawdust.


In fact, they've slowly been replacing the cocoa butter with sawdust.

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby omgryebread » Mon Oct 24, 2011 3:58 pm UTC

ShuRugal wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:
Wait a sec, you really don't think the rest of the world doesn't treat their unskilled workers like shit? I could go the easy route and point to Dubai, Saudi Arabia, Russia, China, or just about any other "developing" country, but I like a challenge; Britain does the same crap to the Polish. And this isn't getting into the hell that is human trafficking/kidnapping in Europe's sex trade (or the US, or Japan).



Oh, the rest of the world certainly does treat their workers the same way. That's my point. The Democratic Peoples Republic of North America is no better than the rest of the world.
I realize that's rhetoric, but the US is much much better than many other places in the world on treatment of unskilled workers, as well as many other things. Yes, there is room to improve, and I'm sure other places are better about it, but saying we are doing "no better" than the United Arab Emirates, as an example, both ignores our progress on the issue, and trivializes the horrors in other countries.
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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby CorruptUser » Mon Oct 24, 2011 5:54 pm UTC

Vash wrote:
The Mighty Thesaurus wrote:
the_bandersnatch wrote:I'd recommend boycotting Hershey's also on account of their chocolate tasting like cocoa mixed with sawdust.

That's because they are cocoa mixed with sawdust.


In fact, they've slowly been replacing the cocoa butter with sawdust.


I hear they are replacing the sawdust with ordinary wood.

Vash wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:Wait a sec, you really don't think the rest of the world doesn't treat their unskilled workers like shit? I could go the easy route and point to Dubai, Saudi Arabia, Russia, China, or just about any other "developing" country, but I like a challenge; Britain does the same crap to the Polish. And this isn't getting into the hell that is human trafficking/kidnapping in Europe's sex trade (or the US, or Japan).

At least in the US (and in Europe and probably Korea and Japan), if your employers treat you like shit there is potential recourse. At least this story made it to the press, which is why we are talking about it.


Really? I'm inclined to believe we aren't talking about it at all.


Fine, typing about it in an online forum...

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby Vash » Tue Oct 25, 2011 7:54 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:I hear they are replacing the sawdust with ordinary wood.


Hershey's chocolate, now with that original woodblock flavor.

CorruptUser wrote:Fine, typing about it in an online forum...


No, saying talking is good enough. I just meant we weren't talking about it. I don't believe we are.

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Re: Hershey forces exchange students into indentured servitu

Postby CorruptUser » Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:35 pm UTC

Define "we". If you mean, people on this forum, then "we" are talking about this, the information is out there and someone brought it to our attention. If you mean, the majority of society, then only a small portion of "us" are talking about it, but the information is out there and the story slowly spreads. It was in the NYT, after all, so it's not hard to find.


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