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Posts Tagged ‘trade’

Aerial fumigation causing more harm than good in Latin America

In Environment, Global Issues, Human Rights on January 13, 2011 at 2:26 am

While listening to Philip Borges’ talk on TED.com last night, one of the things he said really stuck with me. He talked about one of the tribes he photographed, who had been forced to move three times in 10 years because of aerial fumigation in their area. This forced me to think why we were resorting to such primitive measures in Latin America, of course with ridiculous mental images of Agent Orange and other chemicals back in the Vietnam days. So I decided to find out more about this phenomenon.

 

Latin America, as it is well-known, is the hub for most of the world’s cocaine, heroin and other illegal drugs. Colombia alone is the source of over 90 percent of the cocaine entering the United States. Countries like Mexico, Colombia, Peru and Bolivia are the main allies of the US, implementing its drug policies to stop the influx of these drugs into US soil. The numbers are shocking: over 750 tonnes of cocaine are shipped annually from the Andes worldwide in this multi-million dollar industry, and these amounts of production are consistently increasing. Read the rest of this entry »

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Rage Against the Wage

In Global Issues, Labor on December 12, 2010 at 6:59 pm

Bangladeshi garment workers, some of the least-paid in the world, protested lacking wage increases.

The Bangladeshi government recently passed a measure to increase the minimum wage of garment workers from $25 per month to $43. This measure has not been implemented by many factories across the country, triggering protests from thousands of garment workers. In their encounter with the police yesterday, many of them were confronted with tear gas, rubber pellets and three workers died in the attacks.

While this situation is rather unfortunate in itself, it is rather indicative of a trend in global production outsourcing that is increasing the development gap between the 1st and 3rd world by keeping majority of the people in poverty for the advancement of the rich. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve almost bought a shirt or a jacket, only to find that it’s “Made in India” or “Made in Bangladesh”. Looking at that label every time makes me wonder if the purchase I’m about to make will truly benefit someone in those countries trying to make a living. Read the rest of this entry »