Last week after listening to the podcast “Mr. Daisy and the Apple Factory”, I was astounded and even ashamed that an american business icon such as Apple could turn the other cheek to the working conditions in China. I was confused and wondered if as businesspeople, we have a moral obligation to set certain working standards. My reaction was that Apple was almost working with dirty money, stained with the blood of attempted suicides or toxic gases. It really made me sad to think that we as Americans, who should be a model country, would tolerate conditions as told in the podcast. I’m not saying that the government should install these working standards, but contrary that it should be a respected and moral standard amongst businesspeople.
But…..how could I be so un-American.
How is it that I could just listen to a podcast and just believe such foul BS. And what pisses me off more is that it made me lose faith in the country and people that I love.
So that’s my reaction. But really it goes deeper. These fabrications are a threat to an art form that is storytelling. The world has evolved through storytelling, and those in power or those who are willing to lie, know this, and want to write the story of history. This podcast was fabricated because it was an attempt to change the image of the American Businessperson. And, I, and many of you, bought into this untrue story, and for a moment it had the power for me to question the work force that I am about to join next year. Artists for one are storytellers. Whether that is through dance, music, or podcasts, all aim to convey a story with a compelling message that will have an effect on your life. Mike Daisey knew this power of storytelling, and used it to convey an inaccurate depiction of outsourcing, to stir things up. He maybe thought that if he could get away with it, and that if no one questioned his facts, that he could change the whole american view on outsourcing, thus bringing more jobs back to the US. Although he is a liar, I would still like to at least give him enough credit that he did it all in attempt to bring more jobs back to the US….but he would have done so in a negative way through criticizing a world class American company such as Apple, which is twisted.
Here is an example in the past where there was political action taken because of facts that were never actually determined:
“One need not convey only literal facts in order to tell the truth. In Upton Sinclair’s novel ‘The Jungle’ he describes meat packers falling into rendering tanks and being ground, along with animal parts. I do not believe that this occurrence was ever corroborated as fact, and yet this novel moved Teddy Roosevelt to sign the Meat Inspection Act into law.”
– Paul Lazar, actor, director, co-artistic director “Big Dance Theater”
Link to the article : With ‘Agony’ Fabrications Exposed, Theater Artists React
This quote proves how powerful the art of storytelling can be, and how Daisey, if not questioned, may have been able to effect political decisions such as Upton Sinclair was able to….I’m not calling Sinclaire a liar, because I am from Chicago, and the old meat packing plants from the 20’s were no joke, but you get the point.
Lastly, although Daisey did get ousted for his attempt at manipulating the true story of Apple factories in China, humiliating him, and those who chose to believe him, check this out.
Apple is moving more manufacturing back to the US, was it that Daiseys’ voice was still heard through all the controversy. Did Apple, although the conditions weren’t as bad as primarily stated, still take a good hard look at their ethics and working conditions.
I would say no.
I think that Apple is bringing jobs back to the US because they want to prove to America that we can all start to bring jobs back to the US and prosper through it. I genuinely believe that that is the reason that they are moving production back to the US. If Apple does it, then the rest will fall like dominoes. Or at least that is what I choose to believe. I believe that that is the true story that is developing. A comeback for American jobs and the hard working american people not through the use of government trying to create jobs, but that industry leaders will begin to move things back. This is the hope that I have for the workforce that I am entering soon. In the end, if we continue to outsource, in will be the end of us. We can’t continue to only focus on profits at the expense of the American working class. That is whats really going on here, and probably what Daisey wanted to cry out, but instead of doing so boldly and wholeheartedly, he hid behind lies to do so. But, we americans hold ourselves to a higher standard, we are always seeking and striving for the truth, and I think that Apple is leading the way.