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So I was reading an article on the NYT about how horrible it is that the new iPhone 5 used forced student labor: http://nyti.ms/SyUJP4[^]
Apparently around 32,000 students from vocational schools were told they had to work at Foxconn or they wouldn't graduate. I'm sorry, but how is that different from the current 'Intern' culture in the US and elsewhere? I know that in the US, supposedly, unpaid internships should benefit the student and they are not allowed to work in a capacity that a paid employee would, but we know that doesn't happen. Also, I know many programs have an internship as a requirement to graduation. How is it that we can look at China and say 'forced labor', but when we look at ourselves it's 'valuable education'...
Why do you think that the "Three Strikes" policy was so easy to get through, when imprisoning people is widely advertised as hideously expensive?
The US taxpayer pays a fortune to keep about one per cent of US citizens in prison, so that that one per cent can be used as what amounts to slave labour (and therefore increased profits) to companies that gain the favour of politicians.
"Three Strikes" is great, because it means you can put perfectly harmless "criminals" like shoplifters into the workhouse for life -- they're much better workers that murderous gang-bangers, and the like (who seem to walk out of the courts in disproportionate numbers).
But I wouldn't call it a conspiracy; it's just a lot of politicians and businessmen jumping on a very profitable bandwagon -- loonies always try to label this kind of thing as conspiracies, but the supposed "conspirers" don't actually conspire with one other; they just look to lining their own pockets as much as they can.
I wanna be a eunuchs developer! Pass me a bread knife!
I went to a major university. A big, famous one with a massive reputation for total awesomeness in engineering. They didn't require an internship.
I am currently working at a big massive U.S. firm (as a consultant) and our large battalion of interns aren't allowed to do anything mission critical. Everything they do is something one of us could easily do in an hour but they are assigned tasks that help them learn. They attend meetings, plan their day, delivery there results, get congratulated for a job well done, and if they do great work they get a job after college but zero abuse.
The true intern abuse in the U.S. comes from students that think they "have" to work in industry X and since so many people want to do they same thing they think they have to compete by seeing who can work the longest to maybe get a meager entry level job. No qualified student with any intelligence would take an abusive internship in the U.S.
The trend for requiring internships to graduate has become more prevalent in the last 5 years or so. If you went to a big, awesome University, I would guess that they can get their graduates jobs pretty well without the internship requirements... smaller schools not so much.
I'm not indicting all internships, just the unpaid ones when it is a requirement to graduation (in which case the student is actually paying the school for the pleasure of working for free). Abusing unpaid interns is actually pretty easy to do, even without knowing it: http://www.dol.gov/whd/regs/compliance/whdfs71.htm[^]
Personally, I don't agree with your view that students lack intelligence, and that's why they are abused. There may not be much of a choice if they want to finish their degree, and be able to get a job to pay back the student loans. Also, I don't think when a company picks an intern they would tell them up front that it's going to be abusive, seems like something you would discover when you're actively being abused. At that point, there isn't much recourse for the student that would turn out favorably for them.
Interning can be different (not always). I've been using an internship as a part time job, it pays enough to cover my expenses (including my Steam sale addiction ), and the hours are whatever I need them to be to fit with school.
Universities rarely require students to take an internship to pass the course. Most interns are doing it because they think it will get them a job after they graduate more easily, so although they are often exploitative, at least they are some kind of choice and not compulsory.