Thought provoking stuff: The Agony & Ecstasy of Steve Jobs

In New York over the weekend, my husband and I went to a one-man show that defies easy description—the performer, Mike Daisey is an uber-geek who slavishly acquires the latest technology, particularly that produced by Apple. But as a gonzo journalist, he traveled to Shenzhen, China to find out how all these gadgets get made. This show is his platform for informing the world about the scandalous situation he found there. 11,12,13 year old children working backbreaking shifts and getting debilitating repetitive stress injuries assembling iPhones, iPads and the like. Being poisoned by the cleaning products. Living stacked in dormitories. Being prohibited from speaking while on the assembly line. Mike Daisey says he always had the idea that somehow machines and assembly lines were putting together sophisticated electronics, but because it is so cheap to hire labor in China, there is no reason to mechanize the process, they just throw people at it. So our technology lifestyle is fueled by sweatshop labor. Surely there are rich enough margins in the sale price that we can treat the workers humanely? If you’re in or around New York City before December 4th, go to The Public, see the show. Certainly gives you pause.