T Nation

Any Insight on This Problem?

We all know manufacturing jobs are going overseas. Do you think the government should intervene and make it more profitable for buisnesses to open more factories in the US, while keeping the jobs good enough to support a middle class family. I live in a town that’s blessed with kohler company. We’re one of the few cities in this area with a large manufacturing industy (well our city is small 50,000, but you know whhat I mean). Should the government tax foreign goods? what should happen? Some enlightened person should fill me in. I’m fucking confused.

[quote]zephead4747 wrote:
Should the government tax foreign goods?[/quote]

I think the WTO would take issue with that.

Punitive measures would ensue.

ElbowStrike

Protective tariffs do more harm than good in my opinion.

They result in consumers being forced to pay artificially inflated prices.

The people who support such measures are often hypocrites who always buy the cheapest products available regardless of the products country of origin. I really don’t understand why so many people think that the government should force them to do things that they are otherwise unwilling to do themselves.

Some of the biggest beneficiaries of a weak dollar are domestic manufacturers who export their goods.

The dollar is weak because the Fed has slashed interest rates in the U.S. quite a bit. I don’t think the Fed made those cuts with domestic manufacturers in mind, but that’s still gov’t action that has helped manufacturers a great deal.

You wanna fix it? Stop taxing domestic companies who provide job in the U.S. Tax imported goods. Tax domestic companies who outsource.
Taxes make it damn near impossible for domestic companies to be profitable in the U.S. Foreign companies do not get taxed by the U.S. U.S. companies outsource because the taxes keep them from being competitive.

This stuff is actually really simple…Assigning complication to the matter is really just a means of hiding wrong doing.

That is the solution but i don’t see it happening. To many greedy mother fuckers, with politicians stuck in their pockets are making to much dough with the status quo. They don’t give a fuck about people or the country, they just want more…It would take a heavy hand to right the wrongs.
Also, the damn near religious fervor for taxing and punishing the job providers in this country will not allow this to happen.

[quote]zephead4747 wrote:
We all know manufacturing jobs are going overseas. Do you think the government should intervene and make it more profitable for buisnesses to open more factories in the US, while keeping the jobs good enough to support a middle class family. I live in a town that’s blessed with kohler company. We’re one of the few cities in this area with a large manufacturing industy (well our city is small 50,000, but you know whhat I mean). Should the government tax foreign goods? what should happen? Some enlightened person should fill me in. I’m fucking confused.[/quote]

Artificially raising the price of goods with tariffs isn’t going to bring manufacturing jobs back and will ultimately just hurt those people who rely on cheap goods (everyone). You think foreign producers won’t find other buyers of cheap shit?

You want to bring jobs back? Tell the union bosses to take a hike. Remove minimum wage laws. Get rid of mandatory health care coverage. Remove the domestic tax barriers. Get rid of unnecessary regulation like Sarbanes-Oxley.

There are reasons why corporations are leaving. It isn’t greed. It’s simple self interest.

Very simply put:
-Develop infant industries
-Re-train blue collar workers
-Invest more in university education
-Invest more in research and development
-Lower the cost of living
-Get Americans to migrate to Asia/Latin America where people need people with only a high school education at times e.g. teaching English.
Your problem is a lot of Americans don’t want to leave the damn country! In the UK people are very open (in my experience) to leave and go to where good jobs are available.

Let the invisible hand take care of the economy. Why would government do a better job? What precedence is there?

[quote]LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
zephead4747 wrote:
We all know manufacturing jobs are going overseas. Do you think the government should intervene and make it more profitable for buisnesses to open more factories in the US, while keeping the jobs good enough to support a middle class family. I live in a town that’s blessed with kohler company. We’re one of the few cities in this area with a large manufacturing industy (well our city is small 50,000, but you know whhat I mean). Should the government tax foreign goods? what should happen? Some enlightened person should fill me in. I’m fucking confused.

Artificially raising the price of goods with tariffs isn’t going to bring manufacturing jobs back and will ultimately just hurt those people who rely on cheap goods (everyone). You think foreign producers won’t find other buyers of cheap shit?

You want to bring jobs back? Tell the union bosses to take a hike. Remove minimum wage laws. Get rid of mandatory health care coverage. Remove the domestic tax barriers. Get rid of unnecessary regulation like Sarbanes-Oxley.

There are reasons why corporations are leaving. It isn’t greed. It’s simple self interest.[/quote]

Most of the time, you are in left field with your whacked out ideas.

This time you nailed it. Great post.

[quote]LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
There are reasons why corporations are leaving. It isn’t greed. It’s simple self interest.[/quote]

Where do you start to consider it greed?

[quote]lixy wrote:
Where do you start to consider it greed?[/quote]

The simple truth is most people want more than they currently have. The bleeding hearts want us to believe that is greed.

I consider it greed when a person is driven by the desire for wealth and at the same time disregards the rights of others. There is still a right way to behave when trying to attain personal wealth. I also believe a person has the moral obligation to help people in need but I don’t want to be forced to do it.

It is purely others desire to have more that everyone benefits from it. If someone can figure out how to get cheap goods to market for consumers and at the same time provide then jobs why shouldn’t that person be getting wealthy? If there were no huge benefit to entrepreneurs then no one would benefit because they would not enter the market and take a risk.

[quote]LIFTICVSMAXIMVS wrote:
lixy wrote:
Where do you start to consider it greed?

The simple truth is most people want more than they currently have. The bleeding hearts want us to believe that is greed.

I consider it greed when a person is driven by the desire for wealth and at the same time disregards the rights of others. There is still a right way to behave when trying to attain personal wealth. I also believe a person has the moral obligation to help people in need but I don’t want to be forced to do it.

It is purely others desire to have more that everyone benefits from it. If someone can figure out how to get cheap goods to market for consumers and at the same time provide then jobs why shouldn’t that person be getting wealthy? If there were no huge benefit to entrepreneurs then no one would benefit because they would not enter the market and take a risk.[/quote]

I agree with most of what you said. But greed is a reality, and even more so in the corporate world. It is tough to draw a clear line between some corporate practices (e.g: monopolies, patents, etc.) and greed.

I have nothing against people getting wealthy. I might frown upon tactless displays of exuberance and such (A.K.A. bling) but I see nothing wrong with earning a living. The trouble is when corporations enter the equation. While most people will have their conscience ultimately catch up with their excesses, a corporation is, by its very nature, immune to such natural breaks. But they’re not going anywhere so this whole point is moot. As you were…

Corporations, by law, must act in ways to maximize profit for shareholders.

Generally, the largest area of cost in manufacturing and service industries is labor.

People work for less many places overseas.

Now IF the US Gov took action to move manufacturing of US goods back to the US (since foreign car companies already find it advantageous to manufacture here), labor costs would make them significantly more expensive. (That said, if crops were picked by US labor at the rate of minimum wage, food would cost much more–which is why little is done about seasonal labor coming out of Mexico.)

That being, we would have a few more jobs with a significantly higher cost of living for everyone.

The point is we cannot shop at Wal-Mart (i.e. China) and complain about jobs overseas. It is one and the same. It is sad but the clamor for making everything cheaper drives jobs overseas.

It just disapoints me to see that if school isn’t for someone chances are they will be working a shitty job for the rest of their life. In my town we have a shitload of manufacturing jobs and I realise how lucky we are. This town is a gem, and I find it sad how if just kohler shut down the factory here we’d be a ghost town in a matter of a few years. And yet, very few people realise it.

[quote]zephead4747 wrote:
It just disapoints me to see that if school isn’t for someone chances are they will be working a shitty job for the rest of their life. In my town we have a shitload of manufacturing jobs and I realise how lucky we are. This town is a gem, and I find it sad how if just kohler shut down the factory here we’d be a ghost town in a matter of a few years. And yet, very few people realise it.[/quote]

If school isn’t for someone? You mean like you think people too lazy/stupid to get education should be able to have awesome jobs that pay great like other people? There’s a reason people without education don’t usually get paid much, because they aren’t qualified for much.

It doesn’t make you a bad person if you don’t have an education, but you need to be able to do something that not every poor foreigner can do if you expect to get paid more than them.

The USA is evolving from an industrial country into an information-based post-industrial country. Those who prepare will prosper.

I am going to college. just to clear that up. I’m not saying everyone should be making 60k a year.

[quote]Shire wrote:
-Invest more in university education
-Invest more in research and development
[/quote]

These are two very important points. I’ve heard Brent Scocroft speak a few times, are these are two things he emphasizes. Basically, he argues that emphasising manufacturing jobs is a good plan for a developing country such as China, but that the US thrives on innovation.

Making quality university education more widely available and supporting R&D will allow the US to stay competive through the development of new technologies, and hopefully will lead to new jobs as new companies and technologies emerge.

I don’t know enough about the subject to say if the new jobs will come to fruition or not, but it is certain that the US can’t compete with the cheap labor that is available elsewhere. We will continue to lose ground and jobs to other countries.

[quote]lixy wrote:
I have nothing against people getting wealthy. I might frown upon tactless displays of exuberance and such (A.K.A. bling) but I see nothing wrong with earning a living. The trouble is when corporations enter the equation. While most people will have their conscience ultimately catch up with their excesses, a corporation is, by its very nature, immune to such natural breaks. But they’re not going anywhere so this whole point is moot. As you were…[/quote]

I think we mostly agree. I do not like tacky displays of wealth either.

Corporations only have one job – to create more wealth for investors while meeting customer demand. There are more good corporations than there are Enrons, for example. Most corporations would not make it very far doing what Enron or World -Com did. They did not meet customer nor investor expectations and the bottom eventually fell out.

There are a lot of greedy people out there but unfortunately consumers depend on their greed for their own well being. If Wal-Mart did not have it’s practices some other company would.

[quote]Tex Ag wrote:
(That said, if crops were picked by US labor at the rate of minimum wage, food would cost much more–which is why little is done about seasonal labor coming out of Mexico.)
[/quote]
If this were the case there would be no food grown in the US and we would be buying it all from South America and Mexico.

Labor costs do not drive prices up. High demand and low supply drive prices up. Think oil and diamonds, for example. Just because it costs a producer $X to produce a good does not mean he will be able to demand greater than that price in the market. He may want that price but it will ultimately be determined by consumers. If cheaper produce is making it over the borders he will go out of business.