No, this is not going to be another China bashing post, I was thinking about something a little different.
Mattel Issues Third Major Recall
I was thinking that Mattel is just screwed here; and that it is quite likely that it will spread to other toy companies and perhaps other industries. The thing is is that I bet there is a lawyer or two somewhere in the US who has bought up a bunch of Mattel toys and is having them tested for lead content. If something is found, it won't be hard to find a few people who have bought that toy and suddenly a huge class action suit is in the offing. Maybe, the lawyer has some contacts in China and so can target exactly which toys are more likely to be non-compliant. So, if Mattel issues the recalls, they stand to lose a lot of money and brand trust. If they know a toy is non-compliant and dont recall it and get caught in a suit, they are totally screwed. If they don't test all their toys now for compliancy and one is found by the lawyer to be non-compliant, they are screwed.
Now it is tempting to say that America is too litigious and that it adds huge cost to our economy. That is true certainly in the short term but in the long term the results are a better safer society. Even were Mattel to go under (unlikely) over this kind of issue; even if it were all caused by some lawyer somewhere and his basement chemisty lab; sure there would be some pain for Mattel employees and shareholders but the end result would be an America which did not import any toys that contained even trace amounts of lead.