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View Diary: How much are you willing to pay for clothes that didn't kill anyone? (40 comments)

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  •  I'm willing to pay more for clothes that don't (5+ / 0-)

    kill people.  Also food that doesn't poison the farmer or farmworkers or the land or me.  That's damned expensive and has forced me to go to simpler, more basic food.  Which is okay. But still expensive.  I have to compromise some.

    The level of expense you're talking about -- $.10 more per garment, or $.25, or a dollar -- I'd rejoice to pay that difference if it made a difference.  I hate the fact that the US public is supporting so much injustice and suffering, and ecological destruction. And in fact we often get inferior junky products in exchange.  

    But there are limits to what I'm willing to pay.  I have to maintain a professional manner and appearance at work.  If I can't pay for socially responsible clothes that fit that standard, I'll compromise on what companies I support, not on what helps me keep my job.  Most of us are in binds like that in a dozen different areas of our lives.

    I'd like to drive an environmentally sound car. But I don't have the money, period.  I buy used cars with lots of miles on them and do the best I can.

    And the thing I really can't do is research every company I buy products from.  I feel like I do a ridiculous amount of research already.  With clothes, it's just impossible.  There are dozens of "lines" from god-knows-what manufacturers, owned by god-knows-who.  And clothes are only one of the things you need to think about, along with not buying dog treats or toys from CHina, or non-organic US corn (which is almost all Montsanto and may do bad things to your digestive tract), etc.

    I think it's possible to rally a significant sector of the US public against companies that let impoverished workers in Bangladesh die to save some dimes.  But it would take a lot of energy, say equivalent to the NEstle boycott of days gone by, or the Gallo boycott in the UFW organizing period.  As with Gallo, if you can beat one company into submission (figuratively of course), you may be able to influence the behavior of quite a few.

    There'd have to be an organization (or alliance) spearheading it, doing the research, and picking targets.  So you're not just shaking your fist at the public, yelling, "You're supposed to care, dammit!"  You're saying, stop buying from these 4 key companies.  (One key company would be better. Then later pick another target.)

    What we really need, of course, is a way for our corporations to be owned and managed that would not cause them to be continually veering toward irresponsibility, shortsightedness, and a brutal indifference to the fate of trivial people such as workers.

    But that's going to take a while to figure out, isn't it?  In the meantime, it would be nice to stop underwriting massive occupational  and ecological disasters all over the world.

    --------------------- “These are troubling times. Corporation are treated like people. People are treated like things. …And if we ever needed to vote, we sure do need to vote now.” -- Rev. Dr. William J. Barber

    by Fiona West on Tue May 07, 2013 at 04:07:28 PM PDT

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