WIKILEAKS: U.S. Fought To Lower Minimum Wage In Haiti So Hanes And Levis Would Stay Cheap

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    Jun 04, 2011 4:06 AM GMT
    http://www.businessinsider.com/wikileaks-haiti-minimum-wage-the-nation-2011-6

    A Wikileaks post published on The Nation shows that the Obama Administration fought to keep Haitian wages at 31 cents an hour.
    (This article was taken down by The Nation due to an embargo, but it was excerpted at Columbia Journalism Review.)
    It started when Haiti passed a law two years ago raising its minimum wage to 61 cents an hour. According to an embassy cable:
    This infuriated American corporations like Hanes and Levi Strauss that pay Haitians slave wages to sew their clothes. They said they would only fork over a seven-cent-an-hour increase, and they got the State Department involved. The U.S. ambassador put pressure on Haiti’s president, who duly carved out a $3 a day minimum wage for textile companies (the U.S. minimum wage, which itself is very low, works out to $58 a day).
    Haiti has about 25,000 garment workers. If you paid each of them $2 a day more, it would cost their employers $50,000 per working day, or about $12.5 million a year ... As of last year Hanes had 3,200 Haitians making t-shirts for it. Paying each of them two bucks a day more would cost it about $1.6 million a year. Hanesbrands Incorporated made $211 million on $4.3 billion in sales last year.
    Thanks to U.S. intervention, the minimum was raised only to 31 cents.


    Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/wikileaks-haiti-minimum-wage-the-nation-2011-6#ixzz1OHE2QRNW
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    Jun 04, 2011 4:32 AM GMT
    See, Obama is pro-business after all. He should really not keep this a secret. icon_lol.gif
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    Jun 04, 2011 5:16 AM GMT
    Wow...Obama is such a slave driver! icon_eek.gif
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    Jun 04, 2011 5:48 PM GMT
    "Obama Administration" defined as who exactly?


    Not that I care though. News these days is just meant to be more inflammatory than it is informing.
  • acousticpunk

    Posts: 76

    Jun 04, 2011 6:05 PM GMT
    Ironic a black president would fight to keep slavery alive...
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    Jun 04, 2011 6:12 PM GMT
    Wow, what a liberal extremist anti-business president we have in the White House!
    NOT
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    Jun 04, 2011 6:25 PM GMT
    It's all about the (American) economy.

    Doesn't matter what party.

    Though in the end what really matters is limiting federal and in many cases, state spending, lowering taxes on the middle class and on corporations, and ending subsidies to business.

    Yet, the golden rule trumps all: those who are powerful enough to have the gold, make the rules.
  • roadbikeRob

    Posts: 14360

    Jun 04, 2011 6:32 PM GMT
    This is just more valid proof that both democrats and republicans are bought and controlled by big fortune 500 corporations. Its disgusting. icon_mad.gif
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    Jun 04, 2011 8:23 PM GMT
    roadbikeRob saidThis is just more valid proof that both democrats and republicans are bought and controlled by big fortune 500 corporations. Its disgusting. icon_mad.gif


    I can see some truth in that. One industry controls this party and another industry controls the other party.

    It still amazes me that some CEO's are surprised when some Americans view their corporations unfavorably. Well, when you do things like this, it's no wonder they see you in an unfavorable light!
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    Jun 04, 2011 8:24 PM GMT
    acousticpunk saidIronic a black president would fight to keep slavery alive...


    Meh, in the Caribbean mulattos are not considered black, as they are not considered white either really... besides race , even though people still shout that word back and forth at every possible moment, is still not the main player in the Caribbean.. money is.... and this is just disgusting
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    Jun 04, 2011 9:19 PM GMT
    Annual per capita income in Haiti is less than US $400 on average. That is far less than 31 cents/hour. Soooo, do you think the Haitians who are working at these textile mills would prefer that they close down and move elsewhere? I doubt it.

    The minimum wage is a fatuous idea that helps hardly anyone except politicians.
  • creature

    Posts: 5197

    Jun 04, 2011 10:01 PM GMT
    But I thought corporations preferred a hands off approach when it came to governance and business. Why did they get the State Department involved? Oh I get it... They don't mind big government getting involved when it means more money for them.

    I think it's a shame that more powerful nations insist on other nations to live in poverty levels so they can enjoy wasteful lifestyle. Slavery and colonization may have ended in most parts of the world, but the lifestyle is still existent in nations that have claimed to abandoned it.

    I'm disappointed that our State Department got involved.
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    Jun 04, 2011 10:05 PM GMT
    As long as my jeans and whitey-tighties stay cheap, what the hell do I care!?
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    Jun 04, 2011 10:13 PM GMT
    roadbikeRob saidThis is just more valid proof that both democrats and republicans are bought and controlled by big fortune 500 corporations. Its disgusting. icon_mad.gif



    Time to make a pot of tea...
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    Jun 04, 2011 10:37 PM GMT
    Yikes...
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    Jun 04, 2011 10:43 PM GMT
    But what is the relative power of $2 in Haiti? as in how far does it get you?
  • conservativej...

    Posts: 2465

    Jun 04, 2011 11:35 PM GMT


    Rule No. 1: Keep it out of the press. icon_biggrin.gif

    Columbusite777 said
    roadbikeRob saidThis is just more valid proof that both democrats and republicans are bought and controlled by big fortune 500 corporations. Its disgusting. icon_mad.gif


    I can see some truth in that. One industry controls this party and another industry controls the other party.

    It still amazes me that some CEO's are surprised when some Americans view their corporations unfavorably. Well, when you do things like this, it's no wonder they see you in an unfavorable light!
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    Jun 04, 2011 11:43 PM GMT
    cturtle saidBut what is the relative power of $2 in Haiti? as in how far does it get you?


    well its the poorest country in the Americas (thanks also to historical US and French foreign policy which decimated the economy to discourage slave revolts elsewhere) so that could get you by

    When I lived in Nepal, one of the world's poorest countries, one could survive on 30 euros a month... so 2 dollars a day in Haiti sounds doable, but dont ask about the conditions under which they survive (no running water, often polluted water sources, high rate of death to contamination, scant health care available, only basic education, often no power either and no fuel to cook or drive)
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    Jun 04, 2011 11:44 PM GMT
    Greenhopper said
    cturtle saidBut what is the relative power of $2 in Haiti? as in how far does it get you?


    well its the poorest country in the Americas (thanks also to historical US and French foreign policy which decimated the economy to discourage slave revolts elsewhere) so that could get you by

    When I lived in Nepal, one of the world's poorest countries, one could survive on 30 euros a month... so 2 dollars a day in Haiti sounds doable, but dont ask about the conditions under which they survive (no running water, often polluted water sources, high rate of death to contamination, scant health care available, only basic education, often no power either and no fuel to cook or drive)


    hmm have you ever been to Haiti?
  • mustangd

    Posts: 434

    Jun 04, 2011 11:45 PM GMT
    this shouldn't be a surprise, both political partys in the u.s. are themselves governed by monied special interests. for more on the topic in general, read Ted Ralls' work.
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    Jun 04, 2011 11:48 PM GMT
    So while all of you are bitching about parties has anyone thought of how to contact Levi's?
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    Jun 04, 2011 11:49 PM GMT
    Greenhopper said
    acousticpunk saidIronic a black president would fight to keep slavery alive...


    Meh, in the Caribbean mulattos are not considered black,


    Haitians are Black. Not even close to Mulatto. Go watch the Earthquake coverage. They look like they're straight out of Africa.
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    Jun 04, 2011 11:56 PM GMT
    and its key to point out that..each country has a different monetary value..31 cents..62 cents..in their local economy..that can be a fair wage. for gods sakes in my country they have $1000 dollar bills. The other thing is, Haiti is rich in culture especially in their education system..In fact the education system is better in the Caribbean on a whole.The United States recruit teachers from the caribbean to teach Americans...Yes the country is in ruins but its because of the Hegemonies of the world and their influence and exploitation. America is at the forefront and can be blamed for giving power to Criminals who in turn corrupt the political machine within the country. So dont make it seem like Obama is pushing this issue like its brand new. This has been happening for years. Corrupt politics is the reason why haiti is struggling. Foreign interference is why the country is failing. That country could have been fixed a long time ago.

  • Jun 04, 2011 11:59 PM GMT
    I am surprised that you are even surprised at these facts. That's been going on for years, I didn't need WikiLeaks to tell me about it.
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    Jun 04, 2011 11:59 PM GMT
    JAKEBENSON said
    Greenhopper said
    acousticpunk saidIronic a black president would fight to keep slavery alive...


    Meh, in the Caribbean mulattos are not considered black,


    Haitians are Black. Not even close to Mulatto. Go watch the Earthquake coverage. They look like they're straight out of Africa.


    you think that statement is true...Mulattoes are everywhere. The french colonization, the spanish colonization and the British colonization made sure that Mulattoes make up todays society in all of the Caribbean island..i swear your just..sickens me...and it says much about your own education and outlook on the world.