A Wikileaks post published on The Nation shows that the Obama Administration fought to keep Haitian wages at 31 cents an hour.
Contractors for Fruit of the Loom, Hanes and Levi’s worked in close concert with the US Embassy when they aggressively moved to block a minimum wage increase for Haitian assembly zone workers, the lowest-paid in the hemisphere, according to secret State Department cables.
It started when Haiti passed a law two years ago raising its minimum wage to 61 cents an hour. According to an embassy cable:
This infuriated American corporations like Hanes and Levi Strauss that pay Haitians slave wages to sew their clothes. They said they would only fork over a seven-cent-an-hour increase, and they got the State Department involved. The U.S. ambassador put pressure on Haiti’s president, who duly carved out a $3 a day minimum wage for textile companies (the U.S. minimum wage, which itself is very low, works out to $58 a day).
Haiti has about 25,000 garment workers. If you paid each of them $2 a day more, it would cost their employers $50,000 per working day, or about $12.5 million a year … As of last year Hanes had 3,200 Haitians making t-shirts for it. Paying each of them two bucks a day more would cost it about $1.6 million a year. Hanesbrands Incorporated made $211 million on $4.3 billion in sales last year.
Thanks to U.S. intervention, the minimum was raised only to 31 cents.
The revelation of US support for low wages in Haiti’s assembly zones was in a trove of 1,918 cables made available to the Haitian weekly newspaper Haïti Liberté by the transparency group WikiLeaks. As part of a collaboration with Haïti Liberté, The Nation is publishing English-language articles based on those cables.
Anonymous asked: What are other ways to get high?
"The dramas involving pirates… concerned the fundamental issues of the age. As we will see, poor seamen who turned pirate dramatized concerns of class. Formerly enslaved Africans or African Americans who turned pirate posed questions of race. Women who turned pirate called attention to the conventions of gender. And all people who turned pirate and sailed under “their own dark ﬂag,” the Jolly Roger, enacted a highly political play about the nation. These events had their own theater, in both senses of the word—a speciﬁc geography and a particular dramatic form. They took place around the Atlantic, on the hastily constructed scaffolds of port-city gallows as in Boston, and on the heaving decks of deep-sea ships, as on the Fames’ Revenge. The stages were transient, in motion, and simultaneously local and global, as were the subjects who acted on them."
Marcus Rediker (Villains of All Nations: Atlantic Pirates in the Golden Age)