Exploitation happens everywhere, any place where there are humans. We are quite the experts on this. From small scale efforts in families and among ‘friends,’ all the way to big businesses in the ‘free’ economy (and the not-so-free). Personal relationships, office politics, ‘pettybooboo’ stuff, and mega power plays. We are mired in exploitation – we exploit as well as are exploited every step of our existence.
My autistic brain prefers to focus on the small details, noticing every fine nuance within the narrow sphere. The global processing style of the wider neurotypical population veers towards the bigger picture, and often missing out on the important details. It isn’t that either of our neuro-cultures are incapable of seeing the opposite way, it is just an innate neurological predilection. But we can and must train our brains to perceive from all sides of the perceptual spectrum.
What is this about, then, Bunny?
Pet food and pet treats.
A good friend is gifted with the meticulous detail conscious Aspie mind. She is very careful to give her beloved fur baby the very best possible, and sets about doing experiments with various products on the shelf, as well as with home made options. Recently, my friend bought a popular brand of dog treats in a supposedly reputable pet supplies shop. There were stickers covering the backs of the packets, printed with Korean text, and purportedly Made in Korea, as well as a declaration that the product was approved by a government authority. This would usually placate the majority of buyers, but not my friend. She noticed the anomalies immediately. Her mind automatically began to question the details. Why the stickers? Why the declaration that it is an approved product in the first place? My friend carefully peeled back the stickers. No prizes for what she found underneath. Of course. MADE IN CHINA.
“Made in China” has become the bogeyman chant around the world these days. Someone remarked, “China is out to kill the world.” It is not uncommon to find such ignorant and panic-driven expressions at all. The neurotypical global perceptive mindset of the average person automatically seizes on the most obvious big picture and forms a strong opinion from there, without looking at the smaller factors that contribute to the large image that they see.
I am no expert economist. In fact, the truth is, I didn’t even sit for the A Levels economics exam. It was too depressing a subject for my tiny autistic mind, I had emotional and intellectual meltdowns just trying to figure out WHY us humans choose to operate in such ways. So this post is merely a musing of a humble not very clever Aspie who is looking at the conundrum from the social point of view.
Still, at the bottom line, we are humans. Humans need to ask lowly human questions. Here are mine.
Who developed the current ‘free’ economy anyway? China is very new to the whole scene. Who are the people flocking to China like swarms of determined ants to luscious honey and setting up businesses in China? What drives this Grand March Forward? Who are responsible for training, setting up and maintaining quality control (that means constant enforcement)? Who are the people responsible for the ‘hardware’ and why are they not spending time and money and effort on developing compatible ‘software’ to make sure the ‘hardware’ runs properly?
Again, no prizes for the correct answer. Yet, the general majority of people around the world do not even think about these factors. Perhaps, the answers, the realities, are far too horrific to think about. The little things add up into quite an alarming big picture, the big picture rich in detail. That is not something the brains of the majority wish to see. That is also something not many autistics wish to see either.
Us humans altogether. We retreat into our little realms of exploitation. And we rail and rant against the superficial bleeding of our world, “China is out to kill the world,” we declare. We don’t want to look inside at the insidious disease. It is too much for our minds to absorb. And really, there is nothing we can do, us little people, the little consumers with little money buying little things for cheap, and contributing big big profits to the big people with big money selling little things for cheap with big big profit margins. As for the autistic buyers? Like myself and my friend, we just eschew the dangerous traps, and we resort to DIY. Make your own. That seems to be the safest option these days. I am trying to grow my own too, without much success. By the way, where do the potting soil, plant feeds, plastic or clay plant pots come from anyway?
Shudder in your warm underpants. Yes.