World | August 16, 2007
WASHINGTON, Aug. 16 (UPI) — Eight Republican members of the U.S. House of
Representatives have co-sponsored a resolution calling for a boycott of the
2008 Olympic Games in Beijing.
House Resolution 610, which was introduced just prior to Congress' August
recess, is one of three proposed resolutions calling for a boycott of the
Games, citing China's human rights record as the prime motivation behind the
possible move, The Hill reported Thursday.
The resolution by Republican Reps. Dana Rohrabacher, Calif.; Joseph Pitts,
Penn.; Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Fla.; Thaddeus McCotter, Mich.; John Doolittle,
Calif.; Dan Burton, Ind.; Frank Wolf, Va., and Christopher Smith, N.J.,
compares the 2008 Games to the 1936 Olympics in Nazi-ruled Berlin.
The resolution says the German Olympics illustrated that the integrity of
the host country is of the utmost importance so as not to stain the
participating athletes or the character of the Games.
The resolution criticizes China's role in human rights abuses in Sudan,
North Korea, Burma and domestically. It calls for the Games to be boycotted
by the United States unless China takes immediate steps to change its
Copyright © 2007 by United Press International
Trouble Brewing in China
Reaping the Fruits of a China-Dependent Economy
by John Horvat II
For decades, American businessmen have been outsourcing production and
setting up factories in Communist China. They cite a large and industrious
work force with minimal labor costs as the reason that supposed allows them
to manufacture a product at the lowest possible costs. American
manufacturers employing American workers are hard-pressed to compete.
Behind the façade of Asia's industrial powerhouse, however, is the tragic
reality of a society without morals. Chinese labor conditions are
notoriously horrible with little or no provisions for worker safety. Wages
are low, free trade unions not allowed and living conditions can be
scandalously inadequate. Human rights violations, such as forced abortion,
are common. Illegal factories abound and cases of slavery are reported.
Corruption and bribery are endemic making the rule of law questionable at
China fails the test in all the major areas for the proper running of
industry in the West. While the West must pay dearly for environmental
damage or carbon offsets, China is a massive environmental disaster.
Violations that would shut down many a Western firm seem to have no effect
on its Chinese counterpart. Food regulations are ignored and all manner of
toxins, bacteria, illegal pesticides, outlawed antibiotics and carcinogens
are commonly found in Chinese food imports. China is immune from damages
that would trigger multimillion dollar lawsuits in the West.
Far from being the new economic miracle, China is actually the West's
gigantic sweat shop, churning out cheap goods to insatiable Western
Silence on the Left and Right
Perhaps the greatest scandal is not so much the predictably horrific record
of the world's largest Communist power. Rather it is the scandalous silence
of Western leaders who allow the situation to continue.
On the left, rarely do activists focus on the abuses and violations that
would awaken outrage in American soil. Sweat shops in Bangladesh or El
Salvador get better press than those in China. It is known that nearly half
of China's population lives without sewage treatment, and that its water is
not safe to drink, and yet major environmental organizations are not
insisting that Chinese vast cash reserves be used to remedy the
On the right, businessmen cynically claim free trade will bring about reform
and the destruction of the Communist party and its ideology that still rules
supreme. It is a claim that they have made since the eighties. And yet
decade after decade, the Chinese population still suffers under an immoral
system that systemically violates human rights and persecutes religion.
Moreover, Western technology is being channeled into an ever-growing Chinese
military which is building up its power and targeting the very capitalist
hand that feeds it.
While Chinese have long suffered under the present regime, it is now
Americans who are becoming victims. The Chinese government's blatant
disregard for even the most elementary sanitary standards is beginning to
The Chinese food scandal first began when dogs and cats started dying from
pet food processed in the United States and Canada using
melamine-contaminated wheat flour from China. Over 100 pet food brands were
The scandals have now extended to foods directly threatening the health of
American consumers. Seafood, toothpaste and other consumables were found to
contain dangerous substances. In addition, the U.S. Department of
Agriculture reports that as many as 20 million chickens and thousands of
hogs in several states may have been fed contaminated Chinese feed.
Now Chinese mismanagement and shoddy practices are affecting the most
helpless of victims – American children. Chinese-made toys containing
excessive amounts of lead now threaten countless children to dangerous
Indeed, Fisher-Price recalled nearly 1.5 million toys because of the
problem. Mattel has just announced a worldwide recall of more than 18
million toys from store shelves and homes because of lead paint and
Those who claim Chinese goods provide cheap wares to American consumers
would do well to take a second look.
Such cheap goods come at great cost to the Chinese workers who frequently
work in substandard sweat shop conditions. They are now coming at a great
price to American business in the form of recalled goods and ruined
Finally they cost dearly to American consumers and particularly children
whose health is endangered by substandard and chemical-laced goods and
Such costs are to be expected from a Communist government that has long had
a callous disregard for human life and holds itself to no standards save
that of its immoral philosophy.
However, now that American lives are directly threatened, it should serve as
a wake-up call to question seriously the wisdom of continuing present trade
It should at least serve to alert the public that "Made in China" is no
longer a manufacturing label but a warning.
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