Two weeks after the Rana Plaza building collapse, global retail giants that source their garments in Bangladesh such as Walmart, Primark, Benetton and others are engaged in a cynical public relations exercise to distance themselves from the tragedy and preserve their image and their profits.This latest tragedy joins the huge line of similar tragedies that are an integral part of a system that seeks to reduce costs to a minimum regardless of the consequences to workers and their families. After all, as expressed so well by Margaret Thatcher, "there is no such thing as society, only individuals (capitalists) and their families." In this brave new neoliberal world, workers everywhere in the world are expendable and profits are everything.
The WSWS needs your support!
As of yesterday, the official death toll had reached 705, with hundreds more injured, making the collapse the worst industrial disaster in country’s history and one of the worst ever in the world.
We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up