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the_yellow_dart

We're sorry you're poisoning our children

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Provided by: Canadian Press

Written by: Alexa Olesen, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS

BEIJING - U.S.-based toy giant Mattel Inc. issued an extraordinary apology to China on Friday over the recall of Chinese-made toys, taking the blame for design flaws and saying it had recalled more lead-tainted toys than justified.

The gesture by Thomas Debrowski, Mattel's executive vice-president for worldwide operations, came in a meeting with Chinese product safety chief Li Changjiang, at which Li upbraided the company for maintaining weak safety controls.

"Our reputation has been damaged lately by these recalls," Debrowski told Li in a meeting at Li's office at which reporters were allowed to be present.

"And Mattel takes full responsibility for these recalls and apologizes personally to you, the Chinese people, and all of our customers who received the toys," Debrowski said.

The carefully worded apology, delivered with company lawyers present, underscores China's central role in Mattel's business. The world's largest toy maker has been in China for 25 years and about 65 per cent of its products are made in China.

The fence-mending call came ahead of an expected visit to China by Mattel's chairman and chief executive, Robert Eckert, who has told U.S. legislators he wants to see Mattel's operations there first-hand.

Mattel ordered three high-profile recalls this summer involving more than 21 million Chinese-made toys, including Barbie doll accessories and toy cars because of concerns about lead paint and tiny magnets that could be swallowed.

The recalls have prompted complaints from China that its manufacturers were being blamed for design faults introduced by Mattel.

On Friday, Debrowski acknowledged that "vast majority of those products that were recalled were the result of a design flaw in Mattel's design, not through a manufacturing flaw in China's manufacturers."

Lead-tainted toys accounted for only a small percentage of all toys recalled, he said, adding: "We understand and appreciate deeply the issues that this has caused for the reputation of Chinese manufacturers."

In a statement issued by the company, Mattel said its lead-related recalls were "overly inclusive, including toys that may not have had lead in paint in excess of the U.S. standards.

"The follow-up inspections also confirmed that part of the recalled toys complied with the U.S. standards," the statement said, without giving specific figures.

The co-owner of the company that supplied the lead-tainted toys to Mattel, Lee Der Industrial Co. Ltd., committed suicide in August shortly after the recall was announced.

Li reminded Debrowski that "a large part of your annual profit ... comes from your factories in China.

"This shows that our co-operation is in the interests of Mattel, and both parties should value our co-operation. I really hope that Mattel can learn lessons and gain experience from these incidents," Li said, adding that Mattel should "improve their control measures."

Li, the head of China's General Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine, also expressed his appreciation for Debrowski's "objective and responsible attitude toward the recent toy recall."

Chinese food, drugs and other products ranging from toothpaste to seafood are under intense scrutiny because they have been found to contain potentially deadly substances.

But China has bristled at what it claims is a campaign to discredit its reputation as an exporter. It accuses foreign media and others of playing up its product safety issues as a form of protectionism.

Beijing insists that the vast majority of its exports are safe but has stepped up inspections of food, drugs and other products in response to concern in other countries.

Li told reporters after meeting with Debrowski that the government had taken swift action against Lee Der, shutting down its operations and revoking its business licence. Four people from the company also face criminal charges, he said, without giving details.

Since this summer's recalls Mattel has announced plans to upgrade its safety system by certifying suppliers and increasing the frequency of random, unannounced inspections. It has fired several manufacturers.

Tests had found that lead levels in paint in recalled toys were as high as 110,000 parts per million, or nearly 200 times higher than the accepted safety ceiling of 600 parts per million.

Mattel's shares fell from the mid-C$23 level following the first recall in early August, reaching as low as $20.97 on Sept. 10. They have since rebounded, and rose 63 cents to 2.7 per cent to $24.19 in early trading Friday.

China has become a centre for the world's toy-making industry, exporting C$7.5 billion worth of toys last year.

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I wonder if this had anything to do with the visit by the dozen or so ninjas at Mattel's US headquarters the other night??? :scratchchin:

(I'm still waiting for my son's voucher to replace his CARS "Sarge" recall jeep due to lead paint contamination...)

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I wonder if this had anything to do with the visit by the dozen or so ninjas at Mattel's US headquarters the other night??? :scratchchin:

(I'm still waiting for my son's voucher to replace his CARS "Sarge" recall jeep due to lead paint contamination...)

I think Saturn Springhill sent them their old paint robots! :smilewide:

Edited by Pontiac Custom-S
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This is really really sad. My heart goes out to families who's children have been affected by this. :(

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The main reason why products from China are cheap is because they're crap. If you increase quality standards, the price difference will be much smaller. Economists are all speculating higher prices for goods in the near future.

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The main reason why products from China are cheap is because they're crap. If you increase quality standards, the price difference will be much smaller. Economists are all speculating higher prices for goods in the near future.

Forget economists; just speak to pre-boomers who lived during the last 60 years and saw prices on good from Japan, Korea, Taiwan, Singapore, and The Phillippines rise respectively.

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Wow..just wow. :blink:

Maybe we should just send a card and a few million dollars too....

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LOL...

More proof that this country is a f*cking disgrace...

We've sold ourselves out so much that in order to survive we have to kiss China's ass for THEIR screw up...

What about all the other $h! (food, etc.) that's been recalled?!?!

We're the most charitable country in the world both in humanity and business, yet no one ever apologizes to us, appreciates us or anything of that nature. In fact 75% of the world hates us and prophesizes our downfall.

What a disgrace.

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Disgusting...Mattel and the rest of America are kissing China's ass even thought they are trying to kill us with their poor quality products. They should go tell China to F-off...but then they wouldn't have cheap labor I guess..plus no one's got the grapes to do it anyway. :rolleyes:<_<

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LOL...

More proof that this country is a f*cking disgrace...

We've sold ourselves out so much that in order to survive we have to kiss China's ass for THEIR screw up...

What about all the other &#036;h&#33; (food, etc.) that's been recalled?!?!

We're the most charitable country in the world both in humanity and business, yet no one ever apologizes to us, appreciates us or anything of that nature. In fact 75% of the world hates us and prophesizes our downfall.

What a disgrace.

you get pretty sick and tired of bustin your ass each day and we bend over and kiss everyone else's ass.

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Dis-gus-ting. Hell in a handbasket. :(

LOL...

More proof that this country is a f*cking disgrace...

+1

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>>"The recalls have prompted complaints from China that its manufacturers were being blamed for design faults introduced by Mattel."<<

Too small, easily extracted magnets are one thing, but I can guarantee you Mattel never specified 200-times allowable lead content paint. It's 2007, not 1947- there is no excuse in modern times to not know this or not catch it before the 1st drop of paint hits a toy. Is China getting a bye because of a perception they're still '3rd world'? Where is China's apology?

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So we're apologizing to the person that's beating the &#036;h&#33; out of us everyday? My God, are we that weak? <_<

At this rate, America won't be much more than a chapter in a history book by the time my grandkids have kids. We're kissing the ass of one of many countries that pretty much rapes us blindfolded and drugged up with Novocane on a daily basis. Just f@#king peachy as pie, am I right? :rolleyes:

Falling value of our dollar, oil prices setting record highs (I find it sort of amazing, but not all that surprising, that it's now almost costing close to fifty dollars to fill up my four-cylinder, manual transmission-equipped compact truck), growing apathy just falling out of the ass of every other American on an hour-to-hour basis, a war that just won't stop until Bush keels over and dies, an economic war that we are flat out ignorant to ... just, wow. I bet that's not even close to beginning the list of f@#k ups and f@#k-a-rows. It pisses me off just to sit here and chip off just one little ice cube from the tip of the iceberg. Add to that the fact that it's my generation that's going to have to pick up the slack and clean up the mess while feeling the effects of a bunch of &#036;h&#33;headed moves for decades on end, and it downright enrages me.

Sorry for the rant, but every time I catch wind of something like this going down, it makes want to pack up and go to Canada and grab some free health insurance.

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So we're apologizing to the person that's beating the &#036;h&#33; out of us everyday? My God, are we that weak? <_<

At this rate, America won't be much more than a chapter in a history book by the time my grandkids have kids. We're kissing the ass of one of many countries that pretty much rapes us blindfolded and drugged up with Novocane on a daily basis. Just f@#king peachy as pie, am I right? :rolleyes:

Falling value of our dollar, oil prices setting record highs (I find it sort of amazing, but not all that surprising, that it's now almost costing close to fifty dollars to fill up my four-cylinder, manual transmission-equipped compact truck), growing apathy just falling out of the ass of every other American on an hour-to-hour basis, a war that just won't stop until Bush keels over and dies, an economic war that we are flat out ignorant to ... just, wow. I bet that's not even close to beginning the list of f@#k ups and f@#k-a-rows. It pisses me off just to sit here and chip off just one little ice cube from the tip of the iceberg. Add to that the fact that it's my generation that's going to have to pick up the slack and clean up the mess while feeling the effects of a bunch of &#036;h&#33;headed moves for decades on end, and it downright enrages me.

Sorry for the rant, but every time I catch wind of something like this going down, it makes want to pack up and go to Canada and grab some free health insurance.

:yes: :yes:

I've always been one to stress out (Everyone here knows it) and I used to stress out like hell about the survival of GM and the rest of Detroit for that matter.

But then I realized that the problems with Detroit are LITERALLY just the tip of the iceberg. There is no sense in worrying about the fate of GM (Which I am still very negative about) when our country as a whole is and will fall(ing)

For me, apathy is bliss because in my mind, it's just a matter of time before america, as we knew it, is gone. And I'm afraid it will never be the same again.

To top it off, it seems that at least 60-70% of the population is HELLBENT on DESTROYING this country, despite knowing the negative outcome. Whether it be through sympathy that is jaded to selling ourselves out, or just common disagreement on everything america or simply a will to deny our culture in favor of an imported culture.

Oh well, at least I can say I was prepared, when it does happen, and that I'll survive, which is more than most will probablybe able to say.

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I doubt you'd want to come up here! Canada is the King of Taking it Up the A$$.

I can barely read the paper or sit in a Mall these days without shaking my head in shame. The Canada I grew up in is dead and gone.

We have gunfights and stabbings in the schools almost daily. The city is bankrupt (well, $500 million in the hole this year, to be exact). Traffic is a nightmare. The city will spend $300 million to build new airconditioned palaces for the 'homeless', but not a dime to fix our subways or highways. Every day yet another Canadian company gets sold to foreign interests. There are entire shopping centers going up with not an English sign in sight. People go to the States to have MRIs and life saving cancer treatment because it can take 6 weeks to see a specialist here. We have 'First Nations' peoples occupying housing projects that they claim their great-great-great-great-great grandparents owned (too bad they didn't have a concept of 'ownership' 200 years ago). but of course a billion dollars will make them go away.

And the big political issue this Ontario election? Crime? Illegal immigration? The total collapse of our infrastructure in our major cities? NO: funding of religious schools. That is the hot button issue. The Muslims and everyone else want their own schools and expect the government to pay for it. And thanks to the historical mess left behind when the British conquered the French 250 years ago (just our luck the Brits were getting a moral conscience at the time!), funding of religious schools just might go through. After all, the Catholic (French) school system gets funding. Fair is fair, isn't it? So, let's take a 500 million out of the public school system and let everyone have their own school.

Under the guise of religious freedom, the Trojan Horse has been snuck up to the gates of the fortress. Now all that remains to be seen is if the Ontario electorate is stupid enough to let it in.

We in the West deserve everything that is coming to us. Never in the long history of humanity has a dominant culture so foolishly and deliberately let itself be overwhelmed.

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So we're apologizing to the person that's beating the &#036;h&#33; out of us everyday? My God, are we that weak? <_<

At this rate, America won't be much more than a chapter in a history book by the time my grandkids have kids. We're kissing the ass of one of many countries that pretty much rapes us blindfolded and drugged up with Novocane on a daily basis. Just f@#king peachy as pie, am I right? :rolleyes:

Falling value of our dollar, oil prices setting record highs (I find it sort of amazing, but not all that surprising, that it's now almost costing close to fifty dollars to fill up my four-cylinder, manual transmission-equipped compact truck), growing apathy just falling out of the ass of every other American on an hour-to-hour basis, a war that just won't stop until Bush keels over and dies, an economic war that we are flat out ignorant to ... just, wow. I bet that's not even close to beginning the list of f@#k ups and f@#k-a-rows. It pisses me off just to sit here and chip off just one little ice cube from the tip of the iceberg. Add to that the fact that it's my generation that's going to have to pick up the slack and clean up the mess while feeling the effects of a bunch of &#036;h&#33;headed moves for decades on end, and it downright enrages me.

Sorry for the rant, but every time I catch wind of something like this going down, it makes want to pack up and go to Canada and grab some free health insurance.

I guess Mattel Inc. was reading Mahatma Gandhi's non-violence. :P "If the enemy slaps you on your right cheek, offer him the left."

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