I don't give a damn about Apple as a corporation. I am only interested in Apple as a cultural phenomenon. However, if you wish to encounter real criticism of Apple's corporate practices, not some fluff by the NYT, please read William Black's two analysis pieces about Apple as a criminal fraud operation:
- Anti-employee Control Fraud - In this article, Black discusses the nature of this kind of white-collar crime, how it functions, why it drives ethical corporations out of business, and how international supply chains encourage this behavior.
- The New York Times’ Ode to Foxconn and Anti-Employee Control Fraud - In the second article, Black goes through the New York Time's article and it's failure to really interrogate the discrepancies in the accounts given by and about Foxconn.
Black's evaluation of Apple is unyielding: "Apple creates a criminogenic environment in its supplier selection process that leads it to, pervasively, hire criminal suppliers." The explicit and documented treatment of labor in this supply chain is, on the face of it, criminal.
So, go argue with him about the facts of the case. My interest in Apple is as a signifier of a particular mentality among the cultural elite - let's call them Whole Foods Nation - that wants others (like me) to ratify their consumer purchases (phones, canned beans, presidents) as markers of cultural, moral and intellectual superiority.
Use whatever gadget you want, but don't lie to yourself about the very brutal world of global manufacturing where it was produced.