Mattel Chairman and CEO Bob Eckert in a video on the Mattel site, says “I sincerely apologize” about the recall of “some toys”. The toys were recalled because of life-threatening quality issues in Chinese manufacturing plants. Yeah, I guess 19 million is “some” all right.
Smokescreen for Mattel design flaws
One issue is lead paint used by the Chinese. Another is tiny magnets which apparently fall off a lot of Mattel toys. The Chinese didn’t design the toys. They manufacture them using Mattel’s design. Mattel is just using the recall as a smokescreen to hide its own design flaws. That’s not acceptable.
Eckert, who manages to look about as emotive as a Ken doll, explains that Mattel has now “implemented a strengthened 3-point test system.” NOW Mattel will examine every batch of toys, NOW Mattel will inspect the factories, NOW Mattel will inspect incoming toys and be sure the toys are safe.
What the f*ck were they doing before? Trusting to luck? Taking the Chinese at their word?
Getting a jump on the government hatchet men, the head of the Chinese toy factory at the center of the storm has killed himself in the toy factory. Last month, China executed the former head of it food and drug watchdog agency. Look for more heads to roll, literally.
This is just the tip of the iceberg
We’ve already got cabinet level departments, several independent agencies, administrations within executive agencies, all operating with different regulations, rules, and protocols to keep consumer products safe. And they all missed the Chinese-made poison pet food, toothpaste, seafood, children’s cough and cold medicines, and who knows what others we haven’t heard about.
Mattel’s 19 million toy recall is but the tip of the iceberg. About 80 percent of toys sold in the United States are manufactured in China, according to the Hartford Courant.
Here’s the bottom line: China and a lot of other countries with cheap labor and cheap scruples bought us a long time ago. There are only a handful of products still manufactured entirely in the United States.
As long as we live in a culture whose motto is “too much ain’t enough” we’re going to get what we ask for. The economy is now fully global, and the consumer war has just begun. This is simply the beginning.
And by the way Mattel, you need to put the video on YouTube so it can be widely seen.
Toronto Star Editorial: There’s no excuse for unsafe toys
Mattel’s Crisis Team: The Smuggled Out Photos
Copyright B.L. Ochman, all rights reserved