Kristof claims the ‘central challenge’ in poor countries is that sweatshops ‘don’t exploit enough’.


In a New York Times op-ed yesterday, Nicholas Kristof condoned labor exploitation in the form of sweatshops as a route out of poverty:

Mr. Obama and the Democrats who favor labor standards in trade agreements mean well, for they intend to fight back at oppressive sweatshops abroad. But while it shocks Americans to hear it, the central challenge in the poorest countries is not that sweatshops exploit too many people, but that they don’t exploit enough.

On The Wonk Room, Sabina Dewan responds: “The notion that taking advantage of a person’s desperation for economic gain is somehow morally defensible is preposterous.”