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View Diary: Solyndra: collateral damage in a trade war. (53 comments)

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  •  they're a lot less cooperative than american labor (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    eve, MsGrin, Wino, oldhippie, RLMiller

    chinese farmers and workers protest and riot with great frequency, even when they know a beating's coming for doing it. would that americans were as restive.

    •  thanks for the news (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      MsGrin, RLMiller

      what courage

      it is sad that the 'leadership' is so ruthless.

      imo farmers are amongst the most important people in an industrialized country.
      they deserve, imo, subsidies to make up for harsh weather conditions that are out of their control - that is for the family farmers, not the factory farms.

      i believe that the goal of the republicans in this country is to reduce workers to slaves to enrich the powerful.
      those behind the tea parties, for sure.

      the chinese farmers and workers deserve better as do the american family farmers and workers.....

      thanks, again

      •  the sooner we realize our common interests (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        eve, MsGrin, bablhous

        across national boundaries, the better we'll be able to coordinate pressure on the international coalition of interests that play us off against one another, and force better wages and working conditions on both sides of the pacific.

        •  no question about it! (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          MsGrin, RLMiller
        •  It's not going to happen (0+ / 0-)

          There are simply too many people in China for a labor movement to be sucessful.  Labor movements can only grow when there is a labor shortage and employers must listen to worker demands.

          China isn't in that situation.  If the workers strike or riot, they can simply be disappeared and replaced by another group of peasants who are hungry enough to take the work without complaint.  Later, when they begin to complain, wash, rinse, repeat.

          •  there are growing labor shortages in china (0+ / 0-)

            both by region, and by skill level. as regions have begun to bid against one another for the same migrant labor, those laborers' wages have risen, and frequency of strikes and direct action have increased (and been more successful at winning demands).

            furthermore, labor is not entirely fungible, in contrast to how americans tend to see china as one big undifferentiated thing. workers further west in the poorer part of china have lower literacy levels, and lower industrial skills, and the cities out there have far poorer infrastructure and more expensive transportation costs subject to bottlenecks not easily resolved.

            they're running out of people to undercut eastern/coastal chinese skilled workers, there are limitations on moving west indefinitely, and the workforce is rapidly aging as well, in ways that will show an effect in the coming decade or two.

            a labor movement is very likely in china in the coming decade, because of those trends. ands there's no more chinas to undercut those wages with, not with the energy resources and transport infrastructure premade.

            the pattern of the past couple of decades is coming to a close.

            •  I hope you're right (0+ / 0-)

              But China still has a lot of options.  They don't have to move industry and cities west, they can move people east.  And illiterate low skilled workers are exactly what they need to keep wages low and the workers from complaining.

              Yes China has demographic issues but I think the forces needed to drive the change you're looking for are more like 10-20 years off.  I hope change happens this decade, but I'm not betting on it.

              •  they need literate, skilled workers who accept (0+ / 0-)

                low wages and poor working conditions, with cheap transport and energy, to run the 1980-2010 model. they don't have that anymore. americans have a hard time believing this, but the people who got those jobs the corporations outsourced weren't dumb, illiterate, shoeless peasants, they were literate, educated urbanites who were coming from an austere communist-era standard of living who needed jobs to make ends meet with the early 80s inflation due to the rural agrarian reforms.

                and if you think china can keep moving people east, you really need to see the size, density, and strained infrastructure of the cities they've already got there. the scale really does not have an american analogue, outside of manhattan.

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