Monday, February 6, 2012

Congratulations to 100 inexpensive laborers in Laurens

Good news for up to 100 unemployed men and women in Laurens: It's the Year of the Dragon!*

Thanks to a poor economy, a very low (and, if you're lucky, non-existent) corporate tax rate, an abundance of cheap labor and the vocal support of a governor and legislature dedicated to selling out South Carolina's human resources, you're going to get some low-wage jobs in a year or two.

Don't count on great health care plans and retirement benefits, though. They depress corporate profit margins. Bad for business.

LAURENS — A Chinese company that makes plastic film often used to package food is building a new plant in Laurens County.

The state Commerce Department said Tuesday that Uniscite Inc. will invest $70 million in the new plant and hire up to 100 workers.

The company hopes to open the plant in the first few months of 2014, with the first workers hired about a year earlier.

Uniscite currently has offices in Greenville.

General Manager Fang Wang says his company chose Laurens County because of its excellent business climate and work force.

General manager of a Chinese corporate concern praises Laurens County for its "excellent business climate and work force."

English translation: Low corporate taxes; cheap, obedient workers and state laws that protect corporate interests make good business investment. One worker dies from lack of health care, hire another. So cheap!

One worker complains about poor working conditions, fire him and hire another. So easy!

South Carolina gives incentives to bring corporations to locate here, and expects little or no corporate income tax in return? So affordable!

Laurens County's working families and children get left behind with nothing to show for their work? So what!

Sorry to burst the champagne bubbles at Nikki Haley's Commerce Department and the Laurens County unemployment office, but has anyone asked any questions about who "Uniscite" is?

Here's a clue: Google "Uniscite Inc." and you'll get about 3,000 response options -- all of them referring to the opening of a new plastics plant in Laurens.

Try to find out where else Uniscite operates its plants and you'll come up empty. Look for who owns Uniscite, and there's no answer. How many people does Uniscite employ elsewhere in the world? Dry.

Did Uniscite even exist before it filed with South Carolina's Secretary of State's office on August 3, 2011 -- through, by the way, a Tallahassee, Florida-based records-filing agency called NRAI Corporate Services Inc.? Maybe not.

In fact, use the Secretary of State's own website to do a "corporation search" of Uniscite, and see if it doesn't bring you right back to this page.

So, is it possible that Uniscite is wholly owned and operated by the Chinese government?

If not, let's see the corporation's history, with particular data on employment and wage figures, and environmental impact. It is a plastics manufacturer, after all, so let's just make certain it has a spotless bill of chemical health.

But if so, does this mean that Nikki Haley's Department of Commerce has actively engaged in economic development with the leaders of a Communist nation?

Nikki Haley? Lover of American liberties and freedoms and ideals?

The same Nikki Haley, defender of the free market, who escorted presidential candidate Mitt Romney for two weeks across New Hampshire and another two weeks across South Carolina? That Nikki Haley?

Would it be possible to get some answers about this? And to assure South Carolinians that our governor isn't negotiating with a Communist nation to sell our labor cheaply in order to pump up some employment numbers, could we get those answers posted on the same state website that trumpeted the original Uniscite announcement?

(*What's the signficance of the Year of the Dragon for Laurens County workers? Nothing! Now get back to work or you will be replaced!)

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