Anyone know a brand of unicycle which is...

Discussion in 'rec.sport.unicycling' started by DrBallard, Apr 23, 2004.

  1. DrBallard

    DrBallard Guest

    not abusing of children from third world contries? For those who still
    beleives world is USA, well im talking about the little «Made in China,
    taiwan, south corea, India, etc. »


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  2. Sofa

    Sofa Guest

    Yeah, the ridiculously overpriced ones.

    Thanks to the hard work of all those little guys, I have many unicycles,
    instead of just one. Everyone wins!


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  3. darchibald

    darchibald Guest

    Not sure. But I remember reading somewhere that just because something
    is made in a third world country doesn't mean that it was produced in a
    sweatshop or using child labor.

    David


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  4. DrBallard

    DrBallard Guest

    True, but lately, the third world contries have been in a ferocious
    competition and it caused the salaries of the workers (by child it is
    meant 14-20 years old, after 20, they are often fired because they are
    less fast at producing, and it reduces the chances to have mothers on
    the staff, which costs more to the employer)


    The pieces are not ridiculously overpriced. It is like saying Fair Trade
    coffee is ridiculously pricey?


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  5. johnfoss

    johnfoss Guest

    Is anyone aware of any unicycles being produced that *are* abusive
    third-world children? How about we start there.

    Not to assume this is *not* happening, but we can't assume it is,
    either. And possibly a definition of what are unaccaptable conditions,
    and what options a worker in a less developed country has to choose
    from.


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  6. elmer

    elmer Guest

  7. duaner

    duaner Guest

    elmer wrote:
    > *You not buying their unicycle is NOT going to help them one bit! *



    Yes and no. In the short term you are right. But, in the long term IF
    the companies that use bad practices lose _enough_ business, then those
    companies either go out of business or they change their practices.
    Either way, you are (in the long term) left with companies with better
    practices.


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  8. elmer

    elmer Guest

    Don't get me wrong, I'm not pro child labor or pro "sweat shop". Of
    course if we could identify companies with blatantly abusive labor
    practices for manufacturing my unicycle, we would want to put them
    under. But by American standards perhaps most third world factories
    would appear to be sweat shops. Those people subsisted before the
    unicycle factory came to town, and now it is a little bit better for
    them, most likely, and that gives them hope;)


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  9. duaner wrote:
    > *
    > Yes and no. In the short term you are right. But, in the long term
    > IF the companies that use bad practices lose _enough_ business, then
    > those companies either go out of business or they change their
    > practices. Either way, you are (in the long term) left with companies
    > with better practices. *



    Sounds good, until you realize that guys like YOU and I (who imported
    our unicycles) will continue to go for the best price (and the best
    service).

    Last time I checked, a unicycle purchased with the similiar specs as
    mine will cost $200 more than I paid. Whether or not Sally Struthers
    cares is irrelevant, we can all "care" when there's a tax deduction
    involved :)

    //runnin' a crank made in the US and a tire made in China.


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  10. duaner

    duaner Guest

    ChangingLINKS.com wrote:
    > *Sounds good, until you realize that guys like YOU and I (who imported
    > our unicycles) will continue to go for the best price (and the best
    > service).*



    I don't get your point. We imported our unicycles from Canada to the
    USA. Canada has good labor practices. We got no substantial price
    break (at least I didn't).

    I got a good KH wheelset muni, customized to my liking, and I got in
    January instead of months later :)


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  11. duaner wrote:
    > *I don't get your point. We imported our unicycles from Canada to the
    > USA. Canada has good labor practices. We got no substantial price
    > break (at least I didn't).
    > I got a good KH wheelset muni, customized to my liking, and I got in
    > January instead of months later :) *



    Where was your KH stuff made?
    I know some KH stuff was made in Canada (I forgot what, the old seats?),
    however, at MOAB they explained why some KH stuff was made overseas . .
    which comes to my point.

    Economics, availability and service.
    Did you buy your KH thinking about Canada's labor laws? Would you have
    agreed to wait months if Canada alledgedly had bad _labor laws_? I know
    that I cared about durability, service, speed and price (I did quite a
    bit of research before going to Bedford). I knew I was importing (which
    took extra time) but that I would get a better price.

    I am willing to admit that I would NOT have bought the same unicycle for
    $200 more after considering my opinion related to 2nd-hand information
    regarding labor law rumors. I buy direct from Russia, Romania, China,
    India and Canada, and get a cheaper price every time.

    I am not sure how you didn't benefit the same way. Maybe it was because
    I was dealing with a higher priced product? In my case, I was able to
    get the same quality of any of the rough-terrain unicycles at
    unicycle.com (sans brake) for $200 less (even though I am pretty sure a
    paid a lot more for the tire).


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  12. Gumbo

    Gumbo Guest

    I think I remember Roger from unicycle.uk.com mentioning a trip to
    Taiwan to a factory. Maybe he could fill us in on the labour practices
    employed there.

    I'm sure there will be the ultra righteous who wouldn't believe that
    people in Far East industries could possibly be treated fairly, but
    there you go. Some first hand testimony is probably better than wild
    speculation.


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  13. Huthwaite

    Huthwaite Guest

    DrBallard wrote:
    > *not abusing of children from third world contries? For those who
    > still beleives world is USA, well im talking about the little «Made in
    > China, taiwan, south corea, India, etc. » *




    First what makes you believe that a ‘child’ in any of these countries
    builds any Unicycles in less than ideal conditions?

    You haven’t answered that question so far or is it just an assumption
    based on your miss-educated judgement about the rest of the world?

    Have you in fact ever been to any of these mentioned countries?

    I work in Angola presently and have travelled extensively. Workers in
    these countries want you to buy their products, it’s better to work a
    ‘sweat shop’ and make some sort of a living, than hawking on the street.
    You condescend these low paid workers with your assessment of their
    work. The employers of these people become wealthier, they in turn
    purchase products and services, which employ other low paid men, women
    and children. Just because they ‘subsist’ and don’t have the wealth that
    the USA has, doesn’t mean that they don’t have a quality of life that
    which by buying their products provides makes them unfortunate.

    Consumerism of the USA/Europe should perhaps be a better topic?


    JJ

    ============.


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  14. Tom Holub

    Tom Holub Guest

    In article <[email protected]>,
    duaner <[email protected]r.at.Unicyclist.com> wrote:
    )
    )elmer wrote:
    )> *You not buying their unicycle is NOT going to help them one bit! *
    )
    )
    )Yes and no. In the short term you are right. But, in the long term IF
    )the companies that use bad practices lose _enough_ business, then those
    )companies either go out of business or they change their practices.
    )Either way, you are (in the long term) left with companies with better
    )practices.

    Well, you're right as far as you go. But you have yet to prove, or even
    provide any reason to believe, that companies making unicycles and unicycle
    parts have bad practices.
    -Tom
     
  15. Huthwaite

    Huthwaite Guest

  16. carjug

    carjug Guest

  17. DrBallard

    DrBallard Guest

    Sorry I dont spend my life watching these boards!
    I<ll try to explain my POINT OF VIEW as best as I can in english since
    im... french canadian, and therefore, my english skills are quite
    poor.

    «You haven’t answered that question so far or is it just an assumption
    based on your miss-educated judgement about the rest of the world?

    Have you in fact ever been to any of these mentioned countries?

    I work in Angola presently and have travelled extensively. Workers in
    these countries want you to buy their products, it’s better to work a
    ‘sweat shop’ and make some sort of a living, than hawking on the street.
    You condescend these low paid workers with your assessment of their
    work. The employers of these people become wealthier, they in turn
    purchase products and services, which employ other low paid men, women
    and children. Just because they ‘subsist’ and don’t have the wealth that
    the USA has, doesn’t mean that they don’t have a quality of life that
    which by buying their products provides makes them unfortunate.

    Consumerism of the USA/Europe should perhaps be a better topic? »

    No I've been in deep Africa doing cooperative (?) work in villages
    and I've read many books, essays, on this subject. I shall stated a few
    authors such as Naomi Klein with her book "No Logo", a real bible about
    the branding process and the industrial zones (ZFI, zones franches
    industrielles in french) in the thrid world contries. Right now, she is
    working in Irak and she has already visited MANY of these zones which
    are commonly called sweatshops. I can also state Fast food nation by
    Eric Schlosser, Boycott by Steve Proulx (a french canadian essay), La
    Grande désillusion (dont know english traduction) from Joseph Stiglitz,
    and many more. All that to say that no, it was not, like you said, a
    "miss-educated judgement about the rest of the world". Maybe you are so
    well educated, but you don't seem to have learned respect yet.
    "t’s better to work a ‘sweat shop’ and make some sort of a
    living, than hawking on the street." Have you ever asked someone working
    in a sweatshop if he'd like better to go back in his village? He will
    tell you YES. At least, maybe it was hard working of a poor farm, but he
    can be with his family and receive support from the community. Also, he
    is not obliged to work 16 hours a day, 7 days a week with non-paid
    overtime periods when they have to fill in huge orders. Also, people
    working in sweatshops are often kicked from their home villages because
    some multinationals companies is building industrial fields or new golf
    court for a chic tourist zone. Therefore, they are STUCK to work in
    sweatshop and such. Yes, it is better than doing nothing, but it is OUR
    fault if they do not have any choices besides ... sweatshop, until death
    comes. It may look like the industrial revolution europe and north
    america lived in the late 1800 early 1900, BUT, they only get the bad
    sides of that. In long term, they wont be richer, nor more
    industrialized! It only generates more wealth for us, north-americans
    and "civilized" (no i do not think what ive just typed) people. Yes
    globalisation creates wealth, but for whom?
    If you do not want to spend money buying books to be informed or travel
    to see this reality WHICH IS BIAISED BY THE MEDIAS, then al least, go to
    the library and lent it and.. read some. It is quite sad, we are
    virtually living in an aseptized cocoon. Blocked from all realities
    which shock us too much, and then, we just do not want to hear them.
    Once again, I say, sorry for the poor quality of english and the lack of
    specific terms.

    Charles


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  18. DrBallard

    DrBallard Guest

    "Well, you're right as far as you go. But you have yet to prove, or
    even
    provide any reason to believe, that companies making unicycles and
    unicycle
    parts have bad practices."

    False. That's the impression we all have with the new "mode" coming in
    such as Boycott nike becuase of child labor. The activists took Nike as
    a symbol for the figth of human rights because they are a huge brand.
    Because hes the top one. Same thing for Coca-Cola, McDonalds. It doesnt
    mean the competitors doesnt do the same! they could NEVER be competitve
    if they would use the ZFI (zone franches industrielles in french) in
    third worl countries part! In 1984, when the Mondial Bank and the OMC
    (in french again) mades pressures on the thrid world countries to pay
    back their depts they had for trying to "catch up" with north america
    after getting their independance, they interests rates were much higher.
    Therefore, most thrid world contries now have to spend near 50% of their
    yearly PIB to pay back only the INTERESTS on the debts (that money
    mostly going to ... usa). The OMC then imposed a single culture in most
    african countries so they can make more exportations to pay back their
    depts (coffee, peanuts (in Senegal) or cocoa (Ivory Coast) FOR
    computers, cars... the trading rate is quite unfair). In countries such
    as Thailand, India, Indonesia, South Korea, Vietnam, etc. they installed
    ZFI so strangers companies would come give out some job since the jobles
    rate was so high. Before 1984, everything was "MAde in China" and the
    people working in teh ZFi were getting semi-descent salaries, sonme were
    getting syndicates, etc. But after 1984, a huge competition was
    installed between China and the newly ZFI countries i stated before.
    Therefore, many syndicalized companies from china moved to a cheaper
    labor country. Sri Lanka, for exemple, gave out a 10 years taxes free
    for the companies if they came. Therefore, now there is so many
    unemployed in those countries, if a company gets syndicalised, it
    would just close, and switch country. The competition is so heavy,
    salaries goes as low as 11 cents an hour. Much lower than minimum salary
    of the country since ZFI and NOT under the labor laws of the country,
    even if they are physically there. Therefore, everything made in china,
    india, sri lanka, etc. is VERY VERY probably made in sweatshops.


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  19. evilewan

    evilewan Guest

    a question that all ways comes up for me is:

    should i buy american made products?
    surely financialy assisting the worlds greatest oppressor is a bit
    imorral?

    i share charles's concerns that our equipment might not be entirely
    free from bad karma.

    i actualy can't think of a unicycle that is made with fairtrade parts.
    the closest i can think of is dm, but even they have tyres made in
    china.


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  20. DrBallard

    DrBallard Guest

    "should i buy american made products?
    surely financialy assisting the worlds greatest oppressor is a bit
    imorral?"

    Yes, you should! We all should!
    First, the are laws in usa which assure that the people crafting the
    gears are not abused. (Not talking about the illegal mexican immigrants
    who are tolered in california because they are paid a lot less to
    collect our strawberries and such).
    Also, if we buy products made in usa, the companies might less want to
    move her crafting arears to third world countries to be more
    competitive. Although, as we are going now, it will happen. Ok, im a bit
    pessimistic, but... we HAVE to do something.

    Charles


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