Earlier today, Jim explained why we’ve waited so long to offer black t-shirts in our collection of online political apparel. The t-shirts have been available, all right, but not the right t-shirts.
What do I mean when I say that the right t-shirts have not been available? I mean that the black t-shirts that have been available have been made by those who are doing wrong. Every black t-shirt sold on CafePress has been made in a sweatshop factory overseas, by workers who are abused, organized by companies who have eliminated American jobs in order to get stuff made cheap in foreign countries.
That kind of operation just isn’t in alignment with our liberal moral values. We believe that American companies ought to hire American workers and follow American laws for the pay and benefits that workers are to receive. We believe in the American way of work, not sending American jobs away. That’s why we don’t sell black t-shirts on CafePress. We only sell the t-shirts CafePress offers from American Apparel, a completely made in the USA operation.
Right wing Republicans don’t have the same moral values that we do on this subject. They’re willing to look the other way and ignore it when people are treating other people the wrong way, so long as it helps a corporation make a profit. They’re willing to let American jobs flood out of our country. They’re willing to wear and to sell clothes made in sweatshops.
I’m not just making some kind of generic accusation against Republican right wingers in general. I’ll give you an example of the kind of dirty, twisted immorality behind Republicans’ rhetoric and action when it comes to work.
A Republican operation called RightWingStuff loves to try to have it both ways. They like to say that they support the value of a good day’s pay for a good day’s work. But when it comes down to what they actually do, what are their values? RightWingStuff supports neither a good day’s pay nor a good day’s work.
RightWingStuff sells the t-shirt you see here. It carries the message: Silly liberal. Paychecks are for workers!
Well, are they? Are the paychecks behind this shirt for workers? Not really. The paychecks behind the making of the t-shirt that bears this design are for corporate executives, who in turn hire sweatshop factories in foreign countries, who in turn squeeze work out of desperate people for pennies per hour.
If RightWingShop were to be honest, they’d say, Silly liberals. Profits are for corporations. Pennies are for workers!
But then, while the workers who make that shirt earn only a penny or two for its sale, how much profit does RightWingShop make? They make three to four dollars per shirt.
We offer black t-shirts only through Goodstorm because we believe that profits ought to be for workers. The only shirts we sell through Goodstorm are made in the USA by American Apparel, because, while we want to make a profit, we want to share the profits of our sales with American workers.
We refuse to say that we support American workers and then stab them in the back by selling shirts made by companies that outsource American jobs. We think it’s important for progressives to do more than complain about outsourcing jobs and cruel corporations. We think that progressives should help set up and support networks to compete against the big corporate outsourcers that Republicans like RightWingShop embrace.