- Posted September 21, 2012 by
Watertown, New York
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Apple's New Foxconn Embarrassment- iPhone 5 Buyers Line Up to Celebrate Sweat Shops?
CNN is running a front page ad that masquerades as a news story, that celebrates the release of Apple's new iPhone 5 today.
There are lines of people waiting to buy Apple's newest technology. Are these phones being made in California's silicon valley?
No. They are made at Foxconn in Taiwan. Foxconn's 1.2 million workers are paid about a buck an hour- 7 times less than our minimum wage in the U.S.
As Apple's partner, Foxconn, Apple has investigated allegations of worker abuse and suicides that occurred after workers were beaten for not being willing to work 80+ hours a week.
Fences have been installed on the tops of dormitories to prevent more suicides.
But still, abuse continues. Do these conditions that exist at Foxconn deter Americans from standing in line for hours to buy Apple's newest phone?
Not at all.
Apple has billions in offshore banks from exploiting the labor market spread between the U.S. and Taiwan.
And Apple pays lower taxes than most middle class Americans as a percentage of their profit.
“The tax rate paid by Apple, the world’s most valuable company with a stock valuation that passed $50 billion in March 2012, has dropped even more dramatically. With profits soaring past $34 billion last year, the company’s tax rate fell from 24.8 percent in 2009 to 14.7 percent in 2010 and 9.8 percent in 2011. Apple’s tax rate over the last three years was less than that of middle-income Americans with average household incomes of $64,500 per year; its 2011 tax rate was lower than that of American households making an average of $42,500 per year. "
Apple, by outsourcing jobs to Taiwan that could be done here has cost the Federal government billions of dollars in tax revenues. Do Apple's products have tariffs when Apple brings them back here to sell to American consumers?
Do 'American companies' pay import tax?
So Apple has the best of both World's- the American market and low taxes and a cheap labor market in Taiwan. This is not right. It might be legal, but ethically, it's wrong. Apple says it can't afford to make the phones here because of labor costs.
Is that true? How do they have $100 billion sitting in offshore banks? That's a hundred billion that's not circulating in our economy because Apple doesn't want to hire Americans.
But they do want Americans to buy their iPhone 5s. Stupid Americans.
Would it make a difference if Americans knew about the sweat shops Apple uses to manufacture their phones in China?
Probably not. Americans care more about their toys than they do about human rights.
"As Apple launches its much-anticipated new iPhone 5 today, news reports about conditions at the company’s manufacturing partner in China, Foxconn Technology, are fueling renewed criticism of the labor practices that go into making Apple’s popular products.
Yesterday’s New York Times had a detailed report about vocational students who were being virtually forced to work at Foxconn plants producing iPhones and their components.
At the same time, a journalist at the Shanghai Evening Post (translated by m.i.c.gadget.com) went undercover and worked for 10 days at a Foxconn factory in Tai Yuan, where the iPhone 5 was being manufactured.
He wrote about filthy, smelly, cockroach-infested dormitories, numbingly repetitive work and pressure to put in maximum overtime. "
Full story at Forbes:
Now Can We Start Talking About the Real Foxconn?
"Apple Store workers in France to strike on iPhone 5 release day
PARIS -- Some employees of Apple's French stores voted to strike on Friday, aiming for maximum impact by timing the walkout to coincide with the debut of the iPhone 5.
The strike was called by one of the main unions representing workers at Apple's stores in Paris and other French cities after the breakdown of talks over working conditions.
Demands by the SUD union, which represents about a quarter of Apple Store employees, included the installation of water fountains, providing meal vouchers and paying a thirteenth month of salary as is common at French companies.
"We're inviting all the employees who consider insufficient the advances made as part of annual labour negotiations and think Apple isn't showing enough of an interest in its French employees to join us tomorrow morning at 8 a.m. in front of the Opera Apple Store," union head Thomas Bordage said.
The unions representing the remainder of the employees at Apple's 12 stores in France, mostly in and around Paris, are not participating in the strike.