I think the lead painted toys from China are a riot. It shows the essence of capitalism and the free market and reveals the pure soul of all those who use those two words without snickering. Nearly 100 years of protective consumer laws in the United States are now being made irrelevant by huge American companies that knowingly buy tainted toys from China and sell them here with a wink and a nod. We are poisoning our own kids. Ha ha ha.
The hallmark of the lead tainted toys from China story is that it allows the CNN and FOXes of the world to "reassess" the need for protective regulations on toys as if the matter had not been settled in 1906 with the passage of the Pure Food and Drug Act.
It allows lobbyists and pundits to get paid to go on panels and file copy which asks "questions" that nobody with a brain has felt needed to be asked for 100 years.
Ironically, the boomerang effect here might be globally beneficial. If Americans refuse to tolerate tainted toys from China, then all children will benefit, because China will be forced to stop tainting them.
But I doubt that will happen.
Americans do not tolerate lead in their kids toys. But Americans can't test their kids toys. Our government must do this, and our government is now broken by people who deliberately set out to break government.
Once you break the back of keystone New Deal U.S. policies such as consumer protection laws then it is up to each and every parent to figure out if their kids food and toys are tainted. The rich can afford to buy the best. The poor ... well ... fuck them.
No parent should have to test their food, water, air and toys to see if they are toxic. The burden of proof is upon producers and merchants to sell safe products and to be sued to end of the Earth if they sell poisonous product.
This is why Republicans want "tort reform" -- to make the law so that if a parent doesn't buy a "lead paint test kit" then it is the parent's fault if their kid gets brain damage from tainted food or toys.