Saturday, May 21, 2005

Republicans love America

Little more than a flick of a patriotic frisbee from the White House is a cornucopia of tourist kitsch, at knockdown prices courtesy of low-wage workers halfway across the globe.

Tourists can choose a "President of the United States" baseball cap, with a pirated official seal across the front -- good value at 12 dollars.

Or plump for a pewter-style handheld statue of Abe Lincoln or a model of the US Capitol for eight dollars.

Even more ironic is the seven buck scene of one of the quintessential moments of American mythology, the raising of the US flag by marines at the World War II battle of Iwo Jima.

In one of the most patriotic nations on earth, each of these pieces bears a "Made in China" sticker on its base.

Only a few garments have a "Made in the USA" label, and some of those were woven in the Dominican Republic with American material.

Hardly anyone is priced out of the market: a dishevelled homeless man patrols the streets in an "FBI" shirt, made in Vietnam, and a matching woolly hat.
The Mother of All Outsourcing?

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