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edhopper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 08:38 AM
Original message
ABCNews: China-Made Drywall Causing a Stink
http://abcnews.go.com/GMA/Consumer/story?id=7146929&pag...
The Consumer Product Safety Commission is investigating whether drywall made in China may be emitting toxic gases.
Some drywall can pose serious health risks.

Most materials used to build or remodel homes are made in the United States, but the building boom and Hurricanes Katrina and Wilma caused building material shortages. That's when some builders started buying up Chinese-made drywall.

Knauf brand drywall is now at the center of several lawsuits alleging that it emits gases that harm household systems and may be dangerous to your health.


More toxic stuff from China. Let's import more!!
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NewJeffCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 08:43 AM
Response to Original message
1. Who is importing this crap, and why is there no quality control?
did the builder just directly import product from China without looking into the quality of the material? WTF?
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edhopper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 08:49 AM
Response to Reply #1
3. Are you being sarcastic?
The McMansions and Luxury Condos that the builders have built during the housing bubble are basically crap. This stuff (which, like toys and pet food was imported while the Bushies looked the other way) makes these homes toxic as well.
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NewJeffCT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 09:04 AM
Response to Reply #3
8. No
I was not being sarcastic. China does not thing they have a problem with their exports - not long after the first toy scandals broke, the CEO of Mattel went to China and apologized to China because it was a US design flaw in the toys and not a problem with the Chinese factory. Since then, most Chinese have not taken American quality concerns seriously because they think it's just as likely our fault as their fault.

The builders are also idiots for leaving themselves open to lawsuits because of something like this. If they had insisted on good quality drywall and had tough standards for the drywall makers to follow, they would have gotten good quality drywall... but, then they wouldn't have saved a few pennies per square yard on it. Same thing with a lot of the other imports - if the importer had insisted on rigorous standards, they would have gotten good product, but then wouldn't have saved nearly as much money.
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edhopper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 09:54 AM
Response to Reply #8
12. I wasn't being confrontational
with the "sarcastic" remark. I see that you understand that it is the American companies as well as the bad Chinese manufacturers that are at fault.
I was just pointing out that a good chunk of recently built homes were made poorly, so that these same builders didn't inspect the crap drywall they bought is no surprise. Hence the sarcastic question.
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KansDem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 11:08 AM
Response to Reply #8
32. I've always found this statement laughable...
not long after the first toy scandals broke, the CEO of Mattel went to China and apologized to China because it was a US design flaw in the toys and not a problem with the Chinese factory.

As I recall, it was a problem with lead-based paint. Now, how long has the campaign against lead-based paint been going on in this country? Decades? Anyway, we're supposed to believe that Mattel "forgot" to tell the Chinese manufacturers that they were not to use lead-based paint? Yeah, sure... :eyes: Maybe Mattel just didn't care and let the Chinese do what they wanted anyway. Maybe Mattel didn't have "design specs" for the Chinese to follow and simply bought whatever it could from them. But I seriously doubt Mattel provided design flaws to the Chinese.

When this story broke, I heard that it was a diplomatic move on the part of Mattel to allow the Chinese to save face and to insure that Mattel kept doing business with China.

But I never believed it was about "design flaws."
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Egalitariat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:25 AM
Response to Reply #3
24. During the bubble, there was a shortage of the good US-made stuff
so a bunch of companies (Lennar allegedly among the biggest) imported a bunch of Chinese drywall.

I don't know how you lay it at the feet of anybody other than the QC people at the companies doing the importing, though.
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izquierdista Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:00 AM
Response to Reply #1
15. Answers
1. Big box home centers where price is the only consideration
2. It's from China
3. Yup.
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navarth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 08:44 AM
Response to Original message
2. yeah...how's that cheap labor globalization thing working out?
make sure this drywall gets into Tom Friedman's next house.
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sad sally Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 03:15 PM
Response to Reply #2
43. think all these planes serviced and repaired by that cheap
global labor might explain some of the crashes happening? Am not discounting weather problems, but when money, profits and bonuses are involved, safety doesn't seem to be very important.
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comtec Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 08:52 AM
Response to Original message
4. Is NOTHING made in the USA anymore?!?!?!
I mean... Drywall... REALLLY!??!?!?!
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4lbs Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 12:16 PM
Response to Reply #4
38. Yes there is still a lot made in the US, but nothing that is useful to 90% of Americans.
n/t
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hendo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 08:53 AM
Response to Original message
5. the anti-Chinese sentiment here is moronic at best. NT
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edhopper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 09:00 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. I have nothing against the Chinese people
but their products are made as cheap as possible with little or no oversight. To import then without strict controls is playing Russian Roulette.
Deadly pet food here and milk products in China. Lead based paints on toys. Contaminated seafood. And now toxic drywall.

To point to a problem with reason and facts is not "bashing".

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Stuckinthebush Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 09:05 AM
Response to Reply #6
9. Good response
The products are made as cheaply as possible which often allows for contaminants. By continually showcasing the shoddy and dangerous products made by Chinese companies, the backlash should force the Chinese government to impose regulations.

There is nothing anti-Chinese about this. It is about protesting poor quality products supported by a government and sold to world-wide consumers.
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hendo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 09:48 AM
Response to Reply #6
11. Yeah, those iphones sure are pretty sh*tty
Same with ipods, consumer printers, a majority of the steel used in the US, a majority of computer components. The list goes on and on. I would bet that the majority of the people here have no less than 100 products made in China in thier homes.
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edhopper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:00 AM
Response to Reply #11
14. Screws that strip the first time you turn them
building products that are substandard, toxic food products.
The products that you mention are made in foreign owned factories in China. So obviously they have better quality control. The products made by Chinese owned factories can often be slipshod or dangerous.
Why are you defending the exporting of poisoned products?
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hendo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:15 AM
Response to Reply #14
22. Raise your hand if you have ever been to China
or in a Chinese factory for that matter..


Yeah, thats what i thought.
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edhopper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:45 AM
Response to Reply #22
28. I've been to China,
what's your point?
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AndyA Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:04 AM
Response to Reply #11
18. Why are you defending China?
They have a horrible human rights record. In fact, humans don't seem to have any rights in China. It's not just poison pet food, toxic drywall, and lead paint on children's toys, they have women's issues regarding trafficking, abduction, and violence. Torture is a very real concern over there, as is lack of due process and arbitrary detention.

China suppresses religious freedom, restricts free speech and the media, and on and on.

China is hardly worth defending.
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hendo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:12 AM
Response to Reply #18
19. Humans don't have rights in China?
seriously, wtf where do you find this BS.
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AndyA Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:15 AM
Response to Reply #19
21. Facts matter.
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hendo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:22 AM
Response to Reply #21
23. The Chinese system is easy
follow the rules and you will be fine.
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edhopper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:47 AM
Response to Reply #23
29. How much is the Chinese Government
paying you?
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hendo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 12:09 PM
Response to Reply #29
36. I am just one of the very few people here
who has actually been to China. Multiple times in fact. This discussion like many is a prime example of people disliking and fearing what they do not know, or do not understand.
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edhopper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 02:28 PM
Response to Reply #36
42. Again,
I've been to China also. What's your point?
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bullwinkle428 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:51 AM
Response to Reply #23
30. That's exactly what Bush, Cheney, and the rest of his crew kept telling us as well
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hendo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 12:10 PM
Response to Reply #30
37. and it will likely be what Obama and the rest of his crew continue to tell us. NT
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AndyA Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 11:12 AM
Response to Reply #23
33. Great system.
The Neocons have orgasms just thinking about it.
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hendo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 12:06 PM
Response to Reply #33
35. I doubt that
they wouldn't be able to keep thier guns.

Potential threat to the government and all that.
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PVnRT Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 12:56 PM
Response to Reply #23
41. Like the Germans did in the 1930's?
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izquierdista Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:02 AM
Response to Reply #5
16. But it will save your life
If I see a food product with "Made in China" on the label, I put it back.

On second thought, I could have left out "food" in that last sentence.
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hendo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:14 AM
Response to Reply #16
20. you may want to do a full inventory on your computer then
you will likely have to pitch every component in it.
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navarth Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 03:53 PM
Response to Reply #5
44. anit-Chinese?? whatever, dude
your post isn't the brightest I've ever heard
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leveymg Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 09:00 AM
Response to Original message
7. Has anyone else noticed that Chinese-made plastics often emit a noxous odor - more intense than
Edited on Tue Mar-24-09 09:05 AM by leveymg
anything I ever smelled before except on I-95 in New Jersey near the Exxon refineries and DuPont chemical plants. But, plastic consumer goods with Made in China labels -- children's toys, appliances, tablewear -- now emit an odour that's simply overpowering. Gotta wonder what's in there. I don't think the Consumer Product Safety Commission, FDA or EPA have even looked at this.

You also have to feel sorry for the Chinese workers who actually have to breathe in and handle this stuff all day, every day.
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Bluenorthwest Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 09:11 AM
Response to Original message
10. Cheap materials and lousy standards
across the board are the dirty secret of the real estate crash. Recently I was in a CA town where one can buy new, flashy looking houses that sold for well over 300K 18 months ago for about 90k. Still, I'd not buy one, because they are all falling apart already, built with the cheapest materials and untrained labor. Even at 90K they are over valued, for most of them will not last as long as a mortgage. Even if all of the materials were US, they were crap. Dangerous to live in badly built homes, especially in Earthquake territory.
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marmar Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 09:56 AM
Response to Original message
13. Products made in China.....the gift that keeps on....killing.
n/t
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L0oniX Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:03 AM
Response to Original message
17. It's a communist attack! n/t
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Sultana Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:28 AM
Response to Original message
25. Made in China = Cheap ass shit
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pampango Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:39 AM
Response to Reply #25
26. Same thing they said about Japan 40-50 years ago. Like Japan, they make good stuff, too,
but we mainly buy the cheap stuff. Generally speaking, when you buy cheap stuff, you get what you pay for.
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bullwinkle428 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 11:00 AM
Response to Reply #26
31. Japan made garbage for years before adopting the quality control
methods developed by W. Edwards Deming - a night and day difference once statistical process control was implemented, and they set the standard for quality workmanship.

Chinese production mentality seems to be about getting it out as quickly and cheaply as possible, in far too many cases...
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pampango Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 12:37 PM
Response to Reply #31
40. As the Chinese economy gets more developed they will probably make the same transition
that every country, including Japan, has when going from a poor country to a developed one. Developed economies produce more high-end, expensive products (airplanes, computers, machinery, electronics, etc.) rather than inexpensive manufactured goods.

I see no reason that the Chinese are not capable of making the same transition that other countries have made.
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RockaFowler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 10:43 AM
Response to Original message
27. We did this story earlier this month
Here's our story on it from the West Palm Beach, FL area.

http://www.wptv.com/content/specialreports/story/Contac...

"The health issue is my main concern, as well as our investment here, said Dalores Elvas. "I get a bloody nose, and a sore throat. I'm tired all the time living here.

Like Elvas, about two dozen other homeowners in Woodfield will be moving out. Their new homes will be stripped down to the studs while they are gone.

The builder, Lennar, is offering to do all the work for free. The company says it is trying to dig out of what it calls a potential problem.

Lennar sent a letter to homeowners telling them that defective drywall manufactured in China was used unknowingly in some of the homes.

The letter tells homeowners, The drywall is emitting increased levels of naturally occurring sulfur compound that can corrode and lead to failure of air conditioning coils and possibly other copper elements.

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hunter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 11:21 AM
Response to Reply #27
34. Not to mention lungs...
Sorry to hear about the air conditioning coils, but what about lungs?
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RockaFowler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Mar-24-09 12:23 PM
Response to Reply #34
39. That's in the story as well
I'm glad that the builder is repairing the problem, but why was it used to begin with??
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