The first information was uncovered by Smart Money magazine, hardly a bastion of liberal economic thought. They revealed that the laborers in Disney's Haitian sweatshops earn a paltry $2.64 PER DAY. Understand, that huge salary comes only after 10-12 hour days and are paid to, in the majority, female child and teenager workers (just as a comparison, Michael Eisner, Disney's chairman, makes $115,000 a day). Their working conditions, as this space has often revealed, is one of toxic chemicals in the toy's parts and in the air that they breath. Hardy a situation that any caring human would allow to continue anywhere in America but one that seems only to illicit yawns due to the fact that an American company isn't doing it directly to our children. The fact that it is done in order that our children receive cheap, plastic toys with their burgers and in their presents doesn't seem to matter, either.
The next little nugget of information comes from the U.S. Dept. of Labor. Their report discloses that, even in an economy that boasts self-righteously, and wrongly, about our 4.4% unemployment rate, many large companies are very quietly laying off tens of thousands of American workers. Even the government's department of defense for Corporate America's evil attacks on the American worker finds itself forced to admit that the only basic cause of nearly all of the lay-offs is simply to increase the company's net profit for the year and to increase the dividends that they can pay to their stock holders at Christmas.
Finally, the December 7, 1998 issue of the Washington Post carried an article by Michael Dobbs exposing the horrible news that, during World War II, subsidiaries of both GM and Ford in Germany, used slave labor provided by the Nazis to design and build the weapons of war which killed literally millions of people.
While it has been common knowledge for at least the last sixty years that Henry Ford espoused and wrote anti-Semitic views in tracts that gained Hitler's attention and respect and which led to numerous awards by leading Nazis for his support before the war, it is now shown that he sent financial support to the Nazis during the time that American men were dying by the thousands in their attempt to liberate Europe.
According to recently disclosed testimony from a 1974 Congressional investigation into possible monopolistic practices by the automobile industry, Ford and his European subsidiaries were far more involved in the arming of Nazi Germany than had ever been disclosed. The German branch of Ford even designed and built the Kolner Ford Wagon, described by the German government in 1942 as "the soldier's helper".
GM, for its part, designed and built the Wunderbomber, a key bomber in the German attacks and invasion of Poland and Czechoslovakia. Postwar investigations by the U.S. Army revealed that James Mooney, GM's director in charge of overseas operations, met with Hitler just two weeks after the invasion of Poland. Notes written by Mooney, himself, tell of his involvement in the conversion of the principle automobile plant at Russelsheim to produce engines and other parts for the bomber.
While this is just a thumbnail sketch of the involvement of these two giants of Corporate America, I think that the information I have provided allows you to sense the amazing complicity of these two corporations who now attempt to use patriotic themes to sell their wares to gullible Americans. I don't doubt that the future will expose even more American corporations being involved in the deaths of our men in the military during that and subsequent wars.
When all of these pieces of information are combined, thinking people will see that there are three lessons to be learned here. First and foremost, Corporate America has absolutely no loyalty to any nation or political philosophy nor to the citizens of the nation which it demands provide protection to its foreign divisions from the vagaries of the host nation's political process. Corporate America will happily provide arms and equipment to both sides in any conflict where profit is to be found.
Next, the lie of the unemployment figures aside, Corporate America gleefully puts Americans out of work just before the holiday season solely to give higher dividends to their stock holders while moving the vast majority of these jobs to nations where they can abuse and murder the local population in the constant drive to increase their already obscene profits.
Finally, history has shown repeatedly that Corporate America is the first to loudly whine and cry whenever their overseas operations are in danger of nationalization or other profit decreasing dangers. They happily watch as hundreds or thousands or, as was the case in Iraq, hundreds of thousands of human beings are murdered while protecting the assets of Corporate America.
History is now again showing that Corporate America will do whatever they find necessary in order to pay as little of their fair share of the support of this country as their slaves in Congress think that they can get away with before the American people accidentally discover their abuses towards the rest of us.
The obvious result of these evil facts is that we are watching the complete and utter destruction of all that was once good and hopeful about America. These warnings I have brought to you go back to the last world war but, as any even casual scholar of American history knows, everything that the Republicans are allowing Corporate America to get away with in the last two decades of the twentieth century are exactly the same abuses that led, first, to the Great Depression and then to the war begun by Nazi Germany and supported by that era's version of Corporate America.
If you aren't as frightened at the prospect that the world is going directly into a Hell from which it may take generations to pull ourselves out from, then you aren't really watching what is passing before your very eyes.
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