Supermarket chain Asda has bucked the trend towards ethical trading by launching an overtly selfish, exploitative, low-cost range of clothes and foodstuffs that makes a virtue of the fact that every last penny has been squeezed out of third world labourers. The new ‘Sod ‘Em’ range boasts that no decent wages were paid to over-worked child labourers, and that none of your money was wasted making their place of work safe or humane.
‘Paying that little bit more to know that workers have decent conditions and are paid a fair wage is all very well when our customers are feeling flush’ said Liz McBain for Asda. ‘But that’s history now. Look at these T-shirts at only £2 each! How do we do it? By being complete bastards to the people who make them. Our customers will feel reassured that there are still people much worse off than them in these difficult times.’
Anti-capitalism campaigner George Monbiot responded immediately to the unexpected development and quickly threw his weight behind the initiative. ‘While it’s gratifying to be proved right about the imminent collapse of the morally redundant Western economic model, I’ve just got an update on the state of my pension plan,’ he explained, ‘and I’m going to need to watch every penny if I’m not going to be surviving my twilight years on dog food.’
Other supermarkets, meanwhile, have criticised Asda for not going far enough. Sainsbury’s highlighted their previous commitment to Comic Relief at the launch of their ‘You’ve Done Your Bit’ range of low-cost fruit and un-ethical coffees, and the Co-Op also reversed its previous commitment to ‘expensive and overly-bureaucratic’ animal welfare standards, with the unveiling of its ‘Look, They’re Just Chickens’ battery eggs, and its ‘Best Not to Ask..’ sausages, retailing at 20p per kilo.
The homeless man who sells the Big Issue outside Tesco’s in Nottingham says he has noticed the difference in shoppers’ attitude since the credit crunch. ‘They still come up to me,’ he explained, ‘Only now they bring back old copies of the magazine and ask for their quid back.’
nealdoran (similar to an original post by goatboy)