Are you a potential slave owner?

Discussion in 'Free Thoughts' started by Search & Destroy, Mar 10, 2012.

  1. Search & Destroy Take one bite at a time Moderator

    If you had lived a few hundred ago, you were in the situation, what would you have done. Exported Africans and Indians to your plantation? What is the moral dilemma at play here. If you didn't do anything you could not be an activist and just sit back. If you hired slaves at least you could give them a happy life, rather than live with a harsh slave master.

    Would you hire people in North Korea knowing they would be government slaves? If you , wouldn't someone else do it and treat them worse?

    Work with me here, I have a moral dilemma with slavery in the 21st century. Would you just turn your back on oursourcing to North Korea? Or would you do it before someone else did, so that you could improve their conditions. Is reinvesting the money you make from slavery better than abstaining from slavery at all?

    Help me out guys.
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  3. adoucette Caca Occurs Valued Senior Member

    You have to explain this in more detail:

    Would you hire people in North Korea knowing they would be government slaves?

    How is you hiring them making them government slaves?

    The second question would be: Would your hiring them improve the quality of their lives?
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  5. Read-Only Valued Senior Member

    Even though your question is *badly* written, I think we can all see what you are after.

    If I owned a large plantation and needed the labor, certainly - I would buy slaves. Not for the purpose of "saving them" from some cruel fate, simply because I needed the labor. :shrug: But I would most definitely treat them well - after all, only VERY foolish people would treat their capital investment with scorn.

    But your questions about North Korea make no sense at all. You are assuming results for which there is NO evidence at all.,
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  7. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    How exactly are they enslaved?

    To me, the essential aspect of slavery is that they are disallowed from quitting. Are these Koreans, once they have jobs, not allowed to leave them if they so chose (even if quitting is not necessarily in their best interest)?

    There is a big difference between enslavement and just a crappy job.

    If any of us owned a plantation, we certainly might hire cheap manual labor, but unless we plan to beat or shoot them for walking off to a better opportunity, they are not slaves.
  8. Trooper Secular Sanity Valued Senior Member

    Why do we have to go back a hundred years? You’re right, modern day slavery is second only to drug trafficking as the most profitable illegal industry in the world. Let’s see, there’s forced labor, bonded labor, debt bondage, forced child labor, child soldiers, sex trafficking, and domestic servitude.

    How many feel that mail order brides are a good thing? Hmm…the women are from economically disadvantaged countries, where male dominance is the social norm. You are doing them a favor, right? They should be, and in most cases, will be eternally grateful.

    “All I know is that she is young (nineteen), she is from a poor family, her English is not particularly good, and I love her because she is going to be the perfect wife and mother to my children. My very own June Cleaver.”


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    Last edited: Mar 10, 2012
  9. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

    Before the Industrial Revolution there was very little surplus wealth so the vast majority of the human race never had to deal with this situation. The percentage of the population who owned large farms and had to decide how to staff them was exceedingly small, and the percentage who owned other types of businesses (in an era when 99% of the population had to work in the food production and distribution industry to keep everyone fed) was even smaller.

    Wealthy people have always been surrounded by temptations that can cause them to become weak and immoral. However, so are the rest of us.

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    Back in those days most people were not well-educated, had limited contact with other people (no internet), and got much of their guidance from their churches, which happily supported the institution of slavery--with a few high-profile exceptions that can salvage our pride in the human race, such as the Quakers.

    So the question of what "you" would do is moot. "You" would very likely not have existed then. Even if someone were born with your DNA, he would not have had the upbringing and other experiences that make you who you are today. You might have had an inkling that the morality of your family, your community, your whole country, was wrong, but just how far beyond that horizon could you see? Could you envision a world in which people who don't look like you were granted the same (humble and minimal) rights you have? When everyone you love and trust assures you that they are inferior animals who could not possibly handle those rights responsibly?

    Sure there are always a few visionaries around, trying to teach the rest of us to be better people. Would you have had the opportunity to chat with one of them? If your preacher, your community leader, had ever had that opportunity, would he have shared that wisdom with his flock?
    The record of this era in America is not widely disseminated so we don't really know how well the average slaveowner treated his slaves. It's reasonable to assume that if they were competent businessmen, then as you say, they would want to "take care of their investments." But these are the same people who beat their mules, honestly believing that that was the only way to get them to work. We know for certain that male slaveowners dallied rather extensively with their female slaves. So how much genuine affection was borne of those dalliances? Did they treat them better during their work shifts? Did they treat their families better? Remember that this was an era in which a great many men treated their wives like dirt!
    Many businesses are building their plants in other countries, such as Malaysia, where the workers are treated better. (Said to be, I have very little info about these things.) There seems to be a strong correlation between the quality of workers' treatment and the quality of their work. Duh?
    One of the things we fat, rich Westerners have to come to terms with is the fact that in many countries the conditions we take for granted are simply not available. Take child labor, for instance. There are places where the economy is so primitive and the infrastructure so pathetic that people rationally send their children out to work. It increases the family income by a significant factor, allowing them to buy more food, medicine, schoolbooks, and everything else. These are not countries like the USA, where the government could step in and provide these things. They're dirt-poor. Sure there are wealthy industrialists, but they're a minuscule portion of the population. If you shake them down and distribute their wealth equally, everybody would get about fifty bucks. That won't make a significant difference in their long-term prosperity, especially since you destroyed their industrial base to get them that money so they've got no jobs to go to tomorrow.
    You'll find that life doesn't always give you such simple questions, and even when it does, you may not find a simple answer. One of the possible answers to questions like this may be, "Slavery is the only option these people have that presents a path to a freer, more prosperous future."

    You can't always give a static answer to a question that only applies to the moment. You have to look at the long term. Then you have to become an emotional actuary and devise a way to balance long-term happiness against short-term misery--all the while applying the laws of probability because you have absolutely no guarantee that the clever plans you build for these people's shining future will actually turn out that way.
    Like the farmers who beat their mules? People who owned factories in which the workers were not slaves often treated them with scorn.
    I don't have much information about North Korea, but the situation in some Chinese factories isn't very far from slavery. Pretty close to the way many miners were treated in the 19th and early 20th centuries. They sleep in company dormitories with virtually no outside communication, and they're even discouraged from talking among themselves. They may not live inside barbed wire, but China is a tightly ruled country and there's no way a person can run away from his job and find somewhere else to start over that would be any better. Out of a billion people, maybe six hundred per year manage to pull off that trick! One of their biggest industrial problems is suicide. They had to put up nets around their dormitories because the people were simply jumping out of their windows.

    From what little we in the West know about North Korea, it's not unreasonable to guess that things are even worse there than in China. But you have to look at the long term. If we pump capital into North Korea, is there any doubt that future generations of North Koreans will be considerably better off? That's exactly what happened in China after Mao died and they began experimenting with mixing Confucian philosophy with Marxism. Notwithstanding the suicidal factory workers, they by no means represent the entire population. The people of China today are so mollified with their reasonably sturdy apartments, their running water, their quite adequate food supply (during my lifetime tens of millions of them starved to death!), their TVs, their internet cafes and their ability to travel, that most of them don't grumble too much about the things they don't have... yet!
    Just as the miners in the old days were prevented from walking off without actually being beaten or shot, the workers in some Chinese factories have a very similar life--but not all.
    Statistically, it can be argued that these women have migrated into a significantly better life. The odds are good that they will meet other women who have been here longer and learned the ropes, and have even formed or joined organizations that teach them how to exercise their rights. They will learn that although the USA has a long way to go before it can be called gender-neutral, it is still a paradise for a woman with determination and self-respect, compared to the place they came from.

    No, this is probably not the life they were dreaming of, a stay-at-home mom with twelve children and a kind husband (by their traditional standards) who buys them trinkets, treats them like a beloved pet, and never bothers them with the need to participate in important decisions.

    Some of these "mail order brides" are not so naive. They figure out how to play the system before they start. They follow the rules until they get their Green Cards and then divorce the S.O.B. Here in the Washington region it seems like every Starbucks is full of divorced women chatting in Ukrainian or Georgian.
    The world is not perfect, and that can be a painfully sad revelation for you idealistic young people. I remember when I was young and idealistic. I was certain that by now, fifty years later, there'd be no more racism and everybody would just be different shades of tan.

    You just have to make peace with the fact that for some of these women, becoming June Cleaver would be the answer to their prayers. The next step is to find it in your heart to be happy for them, and be content knowing that their daughters will have a better life.

    Hell, I know an American woman who was born into a prosperous family, given a good education, and had plenty of opportunities to make what she wanted out of her life. Now at age 53, it's obvious that all she ever wanted was to be June Cleaver. She never fulfilled that wish and she's miserable.
  10. domesticated om Stickler for details Valued Senior Member

    I couldn't own a slave personally. I prefer volunteers, followers, and occasionally groupies.
  11. leopold Valued Senior Member

    doing business with china or north korea doesn't mean anyone supports commies.
    face it, does anyone here like a commie?
    and what's so bad about socialism anyway?

    we all, each of us, are slaves to something or another.
  12. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    While I get your argument, do you realize that "commie" simply means "communist"?

    i.e. are you seriously suggesting that, to a man, we all hate communists?
  13. leopold Valued Senior Member

    to some, yes.
    i'm not suggesting that at all.
  14. darksidZz Valued Senior Member

    I would use slaves yes, it'll be the only way to get laid!
  15. spidergoat Liddle' Dick Tater Valued Senior Member

    They did have prostitutes back then.
  16. Search & Destroy Take one bite at a time Moderator

    Don't detract from the seriousness of this thread... This is one of those times in a life where time stops and the universe smacks my unprepared face. I haven't responded, but it is only because I'm in deep thought. Thanks to Fraggle, Trooper, Dave, Read & Ado because I have much to consider and more to go by.
  17. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    And to others? Do they just make up their own definitions?

    No? You ask the rhetorical question
  18. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

    And to others? Do they just make up their own definitions?

    No? You ask the rhetorical question
  19. leopold Valued Senior Member

    yes, i did.
    commie in this context refers to "the enemy", my apologies to commies everywhere.
    i guess i could have easily said "half inch thick toenails" instead.

    what was the question again?

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