Benjamin Powell writes in today’s Mises Daily:
Sweatshops in the third world today benefit the workers who toil in them and aid in the process of capital accumulation that leads to higher living standards in much the same way that factories in Great Britain and the United States did during the Industrial Revolution.
I found 83 cases of supposedly exploitative sweatshop wages reported in popular press sources and compared those earnings to the living standards in the countries where they were found. In every country where the sweatshops were located, more than 10 percent of the population lived on less than $2 per day. In more than half of the countries, more than 40 percent did. Yet, in 77 of the 83 cases, the sweatshop wages exceeded the $2 a day threshold.