Kate Middleton’s sweatshop dress
British tabloid revelations that the new Duchess of Cambridge was photographed wearing a £175 dress made for just pennies an hour in a Romanian sweatshop has inspired a new interest in the problem of sweatshop conditions in factories around the world.
One of the best takes comes from Green America’s allies at the Institute for Policy Studies, calling for international living wage laws:
Of course, if the workers that make shoes, clothes, and electronics for Western consumers were earning decent wages, that would mean that we would all pay a little bit more for our stuff, and the companies that make it might net a little bit less. But income redistribution along these lines would hardly be a bad thing, especially given today’s historically unprecedented levels of social inequality: The wealthiest one percent of the world’s population controls 40 percent of the world’s wealth while the bottom 50 percent controls a mere one percent.