Made In China

GENERIC Toy Recall
This column was written by CBS News Early Show co-anchor Harry Smith.

My father used to say, "You get what you pay for."

Well, we've really been getting it from China. Every other day it seems there's another toy recall. Some are painted with lead paint; some are actually made of lead.

It's as if the United States was under attack. The weapon: toxic toys. That's funny, unless you have a clear picture of your toddler chewing on something with a label that says "Made in China."

Thank goodness we can count on the U.S. government to protect us from this scourge. I saw a report the other day which said the Consumer Product Safety Commission has one - that's right, one - person to inspect imported toys.

Oy. Blame globalization. America has lost millions of jobs to foreign countries over the last several decades. And while consumers love the lower prices, many foreign workers have been exploited and environments despoiled.

Huge profits get made. But, in the end, we learn, the real cost isn't all that cheap.

Harry's daily commentary can be heard on many CBS Radio News affiliates across the country.