MSNBC reports that much of North Korea’s income comes from slave labor camps whose products are “filtered” through China and often ends up at U.S. markets. (I wonder if most libertarians support that as “free trade”?) North Korea has basically become one big slave labor camp — one which many people are deperately trying to escape at the punishment of death (or worse.) As anyone but a Marxist would realize, North Korea’s communist economy has been a miserable failure:
“At the end of the Korean War nearly half a century ago, incomes in the North were actually higher than in the South. Since then, average income and living standards have been falling in inverse proportion to their rise in South Korea. Now, according to CIA estimates, the average North Korean exists on roughly $1,000 a year, compared with $18,000 a year for South Koreans.”
North Korea’s fanaticism however, hasn’t diminished:
“Refugees who were picked up in China just trying to make a living are likely to get six months’ imprisonment in North Korea, but there is no crime worse than wanting to defect to South Korea.
“It is the severest crime,” said one of the refugees who escaped last year through a foreign embassy in Beijing and did not want his name used. “Surely they will be executed. Or even if they are not shot, they will be sent to a political prison, and they will have to suffer there all the rest of their lifetimes, and they will die there.”