M.O.M.: My Opinionated Mouth
Leah Cauthron

Made in America

Posted Wednesday, October 12, 2011, at 9:48 AM
View 6 comments
Note: The nature of the Internet makes it impractical for our staff to review every comment. Please note that those who post comments on this website may do so using a screen name, which may or may not reflect a website user's actual name. Readers should be careful not to assign comments to real people who may have names similar to screen names. Refrain from obscenity in your comments, and to keep discussions civil, don't say anything in a way your grandmother would be ashamed to read.
  • Amen - I for one would spend the extra just to keep our money from going over seas ,

    mainly becase one never knows who or what is being finaced with our money when its out of our control ,( More now that ever before ? )

    -- Posted by BRUSHPILE on Wed, Oct 12, 2011, at 1:59 PM
  • Actually it's rather economically ignorant. It sounds like it makes a lot of sense, but in reality the so called economists he's talking about straight out ignore or are unaware of some basic economic principles.

    People buy products and services based on quality and price. Telling people to sometimes spend either more money for a nail, as was one of his examples, that's American made and of the same quality as a foreign competitor's, or the same price and lower quality is destructive to domestic job creation.

    Those unaware of, or unconcerned with, the origins of specific consumer goods, they would seek the highest-quality products at the best available prices. So for those American products that offer the highest quality at the best price, there is no need for encouragement to buy them; people will already seek them out. It's true if they bought nails and wood and other tools made in America it would perhaps save jobs in such things as steel fabrication and lumber, but if they spent thousands more-let's say $2500 more to build the house-that money will not go to create another job that is "unseen." Maybe with that money they'll buy more movies, or go out to eat more, or invest it in stock, or buy a new TV. That would have created jobs in those sectors or for those businesses.

    And even if those products were foreign made, that doesn't mean the money goes away and never comes back. It finds its way back even indirectly quite often. Maybe he bought a TV that was made in China. Then the money from the sale gets used by the Chinese worker or business owner to buy boxes of German chocolates, and that German uses it to upgrade their copy of windows, or invests in an American company that makes houses on the stock market. That activity creates American jobs while also allocating capital more efficiently based on demand for quality goods at lower prices, instead of artificially limiting the flow of money.

    The best thing people can do to save American jobs is to be smart shoppers and purchase goods that offer the highest quality at the lowest price, no matter where they are made. Simply acting in one's own self-interest is the best way to create jobs that are truly in demand and therefore with the greatest chances of being successful.

    -- Posted by jlees on Fri, Oct 14, 2011, at 3:27 AM
  • I disagree. I don't think Americans shop smart at all. I think they buy based mainly on convenience...hence the success of low end products such as those sold at WalMart. This country needs to become self sufficient once again. We were our strongest when we did that. We need to stop catering to foreign countries. Raise our own food and eat our own food. Make our own products and use our own products. If we must share, then share our knowledge about how to become self sufficent.

    -- Posted by Leah Cauthron on Fri, Oct 14, 2011, at 8:26 AM
  • jlees, I agree with most of what you are saying if the playing field is level. That is the problem though, the field is tilted towards China and a significantly biased trade agreement. For some reason our "leaders" act like we couldn't survive without China and until we level the field on the imports coming in, no matter what our U.S. manufacturers do, they are handcuffed by things out of their control. Buying the best product at the best price is what people will do but when the price discrepentcy gets so great like it is now, people in efforts to save money then chose to give up quality for quantity. If I can by a vaccuum from a foreign maker for a 1/3 of the price of the U.S. maker why wouldn't I? There is a chance that it will do just as good of job and last as long, even though the chance is remote, but the worst case scenario is it doesn't and I have to buy another one. Thing is, who cares, I can still buy 2 units for less than the cost of one from the U.S. maker. I don't fault the U.S. maker, they have been hamstringed with so many irrelevant regulations that increase costs that they have to charge what they do to breakeven. I fault the pompous officials that are in office that will defend those regualtions because they know what is good for us and what really want, but then bow down to a foreign supplier and essentially hand over the keys to manufacturing sector by not making them play/pay by the same rules our domestic suppliers have to.

    -- Posted by BitOfCommonSense on Fri, Oct 14, 2011, at 9:13 AM
  • It seems its more about moveing more $$$ around so that more can be scimed off to benefit the 1%

    And screw the rest of us we are but sheep to them.

    -- Posted by BRUSHPILE on Fri, Oct 14, 2011, at 2:41 PM
  • I agree the playing field isn't entirely even but that doesn't mean we should succumb to protectionism either. Trying to force other nations to "make it fair" is not only a pipe dream but disadvantageous to commerce anyway; one would have to concede other countries could ask the same of us in our trade relationships with them. In an ideal world, there would be no trade barriers and the market-the fairest and most efficient regulator-would oversee this.

    The point isn't that it wouldn't be beneficial for Americans to buy American if it was the best deal, but that we need to address the reasons why it's not. Our trade deficits, especially with China, are enormous and growing everyday. Recently there has been a bit of a slowdown on this, likely from a giant asset bubble developing in China that is starting to show signs of contraction, but the problem still remains. Why? Why are our goods, which most would agree ARE superior in quality, not being exported? That is the real question. The answer of course is price. Why are our products more expensive? so much so it's cheaper to develop factories and deal with shipping costs across the Pacific than to produce here?

    One reason is as one pointed out, the regulatory framework hundreds of thousands of pages long that cripples investment and production. Another is that we have the highest corporate tax rate of any developed nation. The third is our monetary policy has caused misallocation of trillions of dollars in capital and encouraged debt creation for consumption, rather than savings for investment and then production. All of these issues are the culprits. All of those have exacerbated and compounded the shift toward trade imbalances.

    -- Posted by jlees on Fri, Oct 14, 2011, at 10:26 PM
Respond to this blog

Posting a comment requires free registration: