8 Reasons you should buy Joe the Plumber’s book and not mine

There aren’t a whole lot of ways for me to tell how my book is doing without bugging my publisher (and if you must know, both my publisher and agent are pleased with sales). So, one of the few ways I can tell is to check my Amazon rank, which has been anywhere from 10,000 to 300,000, but the rank can vary by 100,000 or so per day and really still doesn’t offer much insight.

In order to come up with some kind of benchmark, I started to check the rank of Joe The Plumber’s new book – Joe the Plumber: Fighting for the American Dream. I found that Where Am I Wearing and Fighting for the American Dream were waging quite an Amazon sales…

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#44

From President Obama’s inaugural address:

And to those nations like ours that enjoy relative plenty, we say we can no longer afford indifference to the suffering outside our borders, nor can we consume the world’s resources without regard to effect. For the world has changed, and we must change with it.

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Kristof "Where Sweatshops are Dreams"

Kristof has “praised the malign sweatshop” now he writes about them being a much better job than a job at the dump. Sound familiar? Well it should because I visit the same dump of which he writes and make much of the same conclusion. Although, we don’t see everything the same.

Here’s the comment I left on his blog in response to his column:

In my book “Where Am I Wearing?” I visit the exact same dump in Cambodia. Mr. Kristof is right, it’s hell on earth. I also visit a Levi’s factory. The conditions in the factory were definitely not what one thinks of when they hear “sweatshop,” and I think to call the factory a sweatshop and to call the laborers sweatshop workers…

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Post #1,000!

This is the 1,000th post on Whereamiwearing.com!

To celebrate, I’m opening up the Underwear Wall of Fame for submissions. Send me a pic (kelsey@travelin-light.com) of you holding your favorite pair of skivvies and tell me why they are your favorite and I’ll add you to the Wall.

I’m officially adding Harper…

Jingle These baby

Harper Willow Timmerman modeling her Dad’s Jingle These boxers. Some day she’ll look at this pic and say, “Dad, why? Other girls’ dads have jobs in office buildings doing grown up things, and you…you went to Bangladesh because you’re underwear were made there. You’re SO lame!” But now she can barely move her head, so I can dress her up in my underwear.

For the record, her favorite underwear is…

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Consumer Reconnection

Scott Ballum was featured on All Things Considered today. He’s a 30-something designer turned “Who-made-my-stuff?” consumer. Since March he won’t buy or eat anything unless he’s met someone along the chain of its production, or as NPR so beautifully put, such as “the butcher, the baker, the tennis shoemaker.”

The parts I enjoyed most about the NPR piece were the interviews with his friends, and how his obsession has imposed on their lives. If there is one thing I’ve learned, it’s that you can’t take on a kooky mission alone. You need the support of family and friends who won’t disown you for being weird.

So a tip o’ my Made in China hat to Scott and his patient friends.

(Thanks to Kristen of Vagablogging…

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Ehrenreich on the Poor getting poorer

Barbara Ehrenreich considers whether or not the down economy is eliminating class inequality. After all, hedge fund managers, white collar workers, business owners, are all finding themselves among the growing number of unemployed Americans. She points to the all too common story of Rich get Poorer:

Alright, I’m a journalist and I understand how the media work. When a millionaire cuts back on his crème fraiche and caviar consumption, you have a touching human interest story. But pitch a story about a laid-off roofer who loses his trailer home and you’re likely to get a big editorial yawn. “Poor Get Poorer” is just not an eye-grabbing headline, even when the evidence is overwhelming. Food stamp applications, for example, are rising toward a historic record; calls to one…

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RIP Saipan Garment Industry

On January 31st Saipan’s last garment factory will shut its doors. At its height the industry’s 36 factories employed some 15,000 workers, mostly imported workers from Asia.

Saipan’s advantage was that worker’s wages were low and the garments produced could still be labeled Made in USA. Now that many of the quotas have been lifted the factories have closed down and moved closer to their labor force in Asia.

For a good glimpse of the industry check out John Bowe’s Nobodies.

“Opinions vary,” Goodridge editor of “Chicken Feathers and Garlic Skin: Diary of a Chinese Factory Girl” told the Saipan Tribune, “but most workers feel it was a benefit to earn the money they did. When the Uno Moda closes in a few days, it will mark…

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A Note from an engaged consumer

I received a great email from a reader who picked up a copy of WAIW? As an engaged consumer Sonita has decided to not buy products Made in China.

Hello Kelsey,

I was standing in a ticketing line in Vancouver airport staring at the shelves of the bookstore & the title of your book jumped out at me. Needless to say, I bought it & have read it. I was eager to see what your experience & thoughts were on China. In March of 2008 someone sent me a PETA video clip on Facebook of animals being brutally & mercilessly skinned alive (foxes, dogs, cats & other furry animals I didn’t recognize) for the fur linings on winter jackets for the lining around the hood & sleeves. The animals were…

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