Foreign Imports

August 16, 2007 at 2:57 am 17 comments

The little town where I make my living is considered the Clay Capital of the United States.  It was founded on first coal, but ultimately pottery.  Since it was imports from China that wiped out most of our oldest potteries and continues to burden the potteries operating today, you might understand that I have no love for foreign imports, especially from China.  They make it fast but imperfectly and sell it cheap…because they won’t pay their workers a living wage. 

 When our American factories, like Mattel, decide to move most of their production to China, it makes me sick.  Toys with lead based paint, toothpaste with unacceptable levels of poison in place of sweetening agents… I’ll pay more if it keeps an American working, and our children safer.  What about you?

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Pimping for Pottery Scrapbook Hazard

17 Comments Add your own

  • 1. LauraJ  |  August 16, 2007 at 4:44 am

    I freaking agree! Oh crap time to turn the computer off I just saw some lightening!!

    Reply
  • 2. Shelli  |  August 16, 2007 at 8:48 am

    It just makes me crazy. This isn’t something that is a new discovery. We have known for decades what lead can do to children. It makes me very angry.

    Reply
  • 3. katherine.  |  August 16, 2007 at 10:36 am

    I agree with most of what you said…but the toothpaste was a different story.

    Some of the blame needs to lie with the labor union management…not all….but some.

    This latest Mattel recall has something else behind it. There is a piece missing still. I wonder if it is tied to the sudanese oil connection…this is a far bigger stick than pulling out of the Olympics.

    Reply
  • 4. Dave M  |  August 16, 2007 at 10:42 am

    With the world becoming a global market its becoming harder to buy local and buyers generally want to pay a low price. Competion makes manufacturers choose the country with the lowest cost per unit which ususally means being made abroad. I have problems too withthe issue of paying the workers a living wage, but then their costs of living are far less than the western world. Its a very difficult question, but I think the consumer is at fault as generally they wont pay the price it costs to manufacture an article. Apparently China consumes all the recycled goods, scrap metal etc that the UK “produces”. I also read that a coal fired power station is being built every week which is frightening in terms of pollution.

    Reply
  • 5. hammer  |  August 16, 2007 at 3:19 pm

    I hope China pays big for thier crimes.

    As far as pottery goes, if you pick up a piece made in china and a piece made in ohio the qaulity and craftsmanship of he American one is glaringly apparent. I don’t know why people isnist on buying crap.

    Reply
  • 6. Stacy  |  August 16, 2007 at 5:38 pm

    I try to avoid buying items made out of country as much as I can, but good grief, is it ever hard sometimes to find anything “Made in USA.”

    Reply
  • 7. QuillDancer  |  August 16, 2007 at 10:01 pm

    Nope. I’d rather pay less and be poisoned and dead. :p

    You know, it is the consumer that has the power — we all need to refuse to purchase substandard products. But we don’t. Is it because we just aren’t motived or organized enough, or is it because we’re too lazy? Whichever, but the time we get it together enough to make a diference, it will likely be too late.

    Reply
  • 8. Delmonti (Dave)  |  August 17, 2007 at 12:16 am

    We’ew being sold out…. by management, by bean counters, by marketting.

    There’s no one else to blame but ourselves

    Reply
  • 9. Nessa  |  August 17, 2007 at 1:49 am

    What you said.

    Reply
  • 10. Mr. Fabulous  |  August 17, 2007 at 4:26 am

    I agree completely. It is all just slipping away.

    Reply
  • 11. Jon Mayhew  |  August 18, 2007 at 2:58 am

    Yeah but I’ve got some lovely pottery from Finland! Mind you that isn’t cheap crap! Safety and quality over cheapness anyday!

    Reply
  • 12. John Linna  |  August 18, 2007 at 10:06 pm

    Its the very lack of control and rules and inspections that make Chinese products so cheap. AS they begin to add all those things which they must to compete in the world market their price will go up .

    Reply
  • 13. hayden  |  August 19, 2007 at 3:22 am

    reminds me of the horrible factory conditions in the US at the turn of the century, up through the 30’s. And the scandalous condition of the meat packing industry, which lasted even longer.

    it’s up to the consumer to make the choice. we’re the ones driving the train, as little as we (collectively) care to admit it.

    Here’s a lovely factoid – most of the suppliments added to our food – vitamins, in particularly niacin – all from China.

    So – the consumer revolution drives China to regulate, what then? Cheaper products from India, from Vietnam, from Cambodia. As long as no one is paying attention, the dollar will drive decisions to our detriment.

    Reply
  • 14. rel  |  August 19, 2007 at 6:28 pm

    Kat,
    The reality of it is that I can live without most of the merchandise on the market. That said; if it doesn’t say made in the US. or Canada, I don’t but it!

    Reply
  • 15. guyana-gyal  |  August 19, 2007 at 7:01 pm

    The China thing really scares me, in fact, I’m worried about the toothpaste, I read the labels really carefully now because pirated goods, drugs and so on, are creeping into the Caribbean. Our Bureau of Standards had better be on its toes.

    As for imported versus local goods…I actually love the global market, I like trade and sharing and products that are different, exotic, from far away places. I like choices. But I want products of good, safe quality.

    Reply
  • 16. Therevdrkate  |  August 20, 2007 at 1:27 am

    I am with you! It troubles me how hard it is to buy items not made in China! I love to visit different parts of the country and buy local crafts, including pottery. And I like pottery that tells stories! I do have some antique China – made in China back during the days of “the China trade” and passed down – it is far different what you buy today. Beautifully proportioned and glazed – an art as opposed to a profit margin!

    Reply
  • 17. jackiesgarden  |  August 21, 2007 at 4:22 am

    This is one of my biggest gripes! I figure China is going to OWN us pretty soon. And it’s our own fault.

    Reply

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