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Author Topic: Made in America  (Read 13115 times)
BjornBee
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« Reply #40 on: December 14, 2011, 06:49:26 AM »

Simply put; I prefer 'engaging' or inviting others in conversation or debate and clearly loath those who (Know it all)  ridicule or minimise another as a means to get their own point across (a method that's rarely successfull).

Good point

I've been frequently accused of focusing "too much' attention on the BIG picture over the years (fortunately for me, a talent I was well paid for). 

Ok, here is the big set up, placing you above the rest......

I admit to spending (waisting?) a lot of time waiting for others to just catch up, but that's OK.  I'm not trying to convince 'anyone' of "anything.'  Not my style or purpose.  One can 'choose' to be rigid or not in ones thoughts. 

Ah...there it is! Others too slow to know what you know. There is that ridiculing, minimizing attitude that you speak of while describing others. Your smart, others are too slow. You know, while others are ignorant. All the while claiming others do what you say is wrong, while doing it yourself.

While this classic conversation style is repeated over and over in your post, I think you are smart enough to get the point from this one example.

Your now not talking about the subject at hand. But rather focused on others style of conversation, level of intelligence, and labling others with what you feel important. This is where it usually turns ugly as people get frustrated and get feelings hurt.

But maybe, just maybe, your defining what others say. while giving your own posts a pass, never realizing how others read your own thoughts written out here. Just something to consider.

I am from the belief that it is healthy for others to think very highly of themselves. That they are just as smart, capable, and have the ability to do better than anyone else. Self esteem, confidence, reward, and the hunger has been slowly sapped from our society from those thinking we should all be the same. When I ask my kids who the best ball player on their team is....I want them to say they are. I want every kid to say that. When I ask who the smartest person in their class is, I expect them to say they are. But I expect every kid to say that. And when someone expresses themselves here on this forum, I want them to speak with passion and from the position that they know what they speak of. You speak that others who speak with "certainty" is something to loathe. Sorry, I just see it as human nature....and one that is healthy. It is your job, responsibility, or desire, if you choose to do so, to intelligently show others they are wrong. Not by attacking them, but by showing them. And perhaps not from a position that "I am ahead in MY thinking (while you are too slow or beneath my intelligence)", and from details that you traveled more, know more, thought this out more, or any other denigrating style or detail.

Mentioning Arab spring and all those ignorant Americans, really does what? Did you teach anybody anything in that comment? Or just another parting denigrating shot, while casting others doing pretty much what you are doing.

Just trying to help out......  Wink
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T Beek
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« Reply #41 on: December 14, 2011, 07:24:45 AM »

Is this an example of the 'pot calling the kettle..........? grin'  

Sorry BjornBee, but I'm not the one 'complaining about an inability to understand' anothers concept or opinion.  

Of all people you should know what that's like Wink.  Especially since you've also experienced the same thing from time to time, (waiting for someone to catch up).  My post was never intended as a slam, unlike some grin.  But If bitten I can/do bite back.  Just like you grin  

I hope you read this entire thread, it should've provided more perspective than you've aparently gathered.

Do you have something to add to 'this' discussion or is 'this' it?  Am I supposed to go away now after being admonished?  See how much we have in common grin?

I've said it before, "Its not my job to teach anyone anything, I'm learning too, every day."  

That said, I base my opinions on personal experience, if 'anyone' wants to discuss that let me know.  

"Assumptions" are just that.  See, 'this' is what I mean.  I NEVER called anyone ignorant, those are YOUR words.

thomas

« Last Edit: December 14, 2011, 07:34:50 AM by T Beek » Logged

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Scadsobees
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« Reply #42 on: December 14, 2011, 08:13:33 AM »

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Do you have something to add to 'this' discussion or is 'this' it?  Am I supposed to go away now after being admonished?  See how much we have in common grin?

Thomas, he actually tried engaging you in the discussion, and you eluded it.

You could start by answering his questions.  You mentioned "the power to annihilate ourselves in the blink of an eye" (still no specificity), but the other questions remain unanswered. 

It is very hard to respond to simple playbook semantics.

....to powerful for our own good"

".....fear of the natural world"

"....Motivated humans working hard towards the collective doom...."



So what power do we need to give up?

What fears are you suggesting?

What motivated humans are working on collective doom?

As screwed up as your suggesting, who do you propose lead us into the future? Union leaders? Our political leaders? The U.N.?
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« Reply #43 on: December 14, 2011, 08:28:29 AM »

OK, we may be at logger heads here…..  How about this:

Can somebody explain to me WHY we don’t make TV’s in America anymore?  Why we don’t make radios/MP3?  Why we don’t make phones?  Why we don’t make 90% of our cars anymore? 
Surely this can’t ALL be because of the dreaded UAW can it  huh 

Surely this can’t all be the fault of Obama, he’s only been in office for 3 years  huh 

So what went wrong?  Can the ship ever be righted again?  How? 

In Michigan we've been preaching to buy American made cars since the 1980s.  The rest of the Nation hasn't been listening.
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BjornBee
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« Reply #44 on: December 14, 2011, 08:31:14 AM »

>>>>"Better dead than Red"  Another American phrase mostly misunderstood by Americans, much like "Arab Spring"

Ignorance is defined as "a lack of knowledge". Yes, I do contend that you are calling others ignorant. While you are not pointing out anyone specific, you clearly are calling other ignorant in my opinion by claiming they do not see things as you do.

As I said, this is where things usually get personal. So the Black kettle position, is on cue.

And since you acknowledge I am somewhat schooled on the matter, let me also be the one to perhaps point out from experience. It's not what you think your saying, it really comes down to what other perceive or understand what your saying. You can claim all day long your not this or that, but if others see it differently, then your perception of what you want others to comprehend, is trumped by the reality of what they actually conceive it to be.

I was merely trying to point out, that I for one, saw your comments as denigrating. When one starts to justify their positions of "I traveled here....I know" and "I worked here....I know" and claiming others are behind in your place on your own path of enlightenment, your perception of reality may be far different than others.

My last post was meant to help. But perhaps my perception of helping does not fit into your perceived notion of reality. Sorry for that.
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T Beek
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« Reply #45 on: December 14, 2011, 08:39:20 AM »

I apologise, don't want to appear thick, but I don't recall 'any questions' per say, felt more like accusations (my own paranoia perhaps?) to me.  Maybe I'm the one requiring 'more' details' I don't know.  I thought it was a forum.

If someone is offering I'm open to it.  Seriously people.

Bjorn you are telling it true, 'perceptions' (many false) especially via the web are hard to avoid, whether right or wrong. Its the way it is, sorry.

thomas
« Last Edit: December 14, 2011, 09:29:18 AM by T Beek » Logged

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BjornBee
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« Reply #46 on: December 14, 2011, 09:07:44 AM »

Bluebee,
Perhaps quality, marketing, cost, and other factors played into Americans buying foreign cars.

That "Buy American" goes back further than the 80's. Probably at least the 70's. This was a time that American cars were pure crap. No other way to say it.

If you walk into a restaurant and the waiter cusses at your wife, the cook spits in your food, your overcharged, and then they flatten your tires before you leave.......how long before you go back? Do you buy into the mailer in your mailbox claiming they have changed their ways, while asking you to come back, knowing the owners and staff are the same? Changing the menu does little to repair the damage.

Now are cars different today? Yes they are. American cars are some of the best made. But times have changed also. American car companies failed to take care of the market in the 70's and 80's. Today, it's not the same market as before when buying cars was an easy choice of domestic or foreign.

Today, cars are bought for quality and price. But marketing them as domestic and foreign, is lost in the shuffle as most know the parts, the assembly, and the ownership, is far from the definition of domestic or foreign.

Throw in the knowledge that car companies over the years paid for "ghost" workers based on union demands, reflecting in higher than needed prices, with quality issues, and people base their buying choices on many more things than the "Buy American" concept.

May I also point out that some, or perhaps more than some, also could care less about supporting a company full of workers who pay dues to a political machine that they feel are at odds with their own lifestyle and choices in living their own lives.

But car companies should not be pointing fingers at "Americans" as the fault of their poor performance. When they had a much larger portion of the market, they screwed it up. They are their own worst enemy. Other companies smoked them at their own game. Because they got lazy and fat. And perhaps our own political system failed them also. But having them team up together, instead of just fixing the problems, is not the solution I see as making things better.

Now, they have to be smarter, better, and cheaper than others to regain the market they once took for granted. Good for the consumer I say. Just perhaps, getting out of politics would be a good thing also. We all complain about special interests and big business having way too much control in government. Car companies are just the same. So why is a car company any different than Walmart. Don't they both employ tens of thousands of people? It's just in style to crap on Walmart, but seen as un-Amercian to do the same with a car company. Why is that?

I am a strong supporter of local business and buy American programs. Car companies, with their unions, political clout, and influences in Washington, are outside my willingness to support based on this one single concept of "Buy American". It goes deeper than that. They are part of the problem in getting this country to where it now is. And my consumer dollars go to support those businesses that I see worthy of my money. And if that means buying a Toyota, while supporting American workers in other states, than so be it. With few other exceptions, buying a "American" car is not part of my overall approach of buying American. Buying American cars is more about "Buy Union", and a message that I pass on.

With that said, I'll probably look at all my choices next time I buy a new car. It's just that any "Buy American" marketing of cars is far less on my buy meter for the reason stated above.
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« Reply #47 on: December 14, 2011, 11:18:30 AM »

I was still driving a big wheel  Smiley in the 70s, so I don’t have 1st hand experience but surely SOMEBODY in America had to be making a descent car?  Yes?  No?  I’m under the impression that the new emission laws of the day (cat converter, EGR, evap) and low octane fuel took its toll on performance.  That and the lack of fuel (thanks again Opec).  BTW…Do they still make Big Wheels in the USA?

As for the “union” that bee keepers love to hate; is it better to support people in a foreign country than to support your own fellow American citizens?  This I don’t get?  Doesn’t represented labor teach your kids everyday at school and run the hospitals?  Is there some abuse, certainly.  Nothing is ever perfect.  Is there abuse by the CEOs who give themselves huge paydays after shipping American jobs overseas?  

As for the car companies vs Walmart, I would suggest that Walmart is just a store front for China Inc.  They are true capitalists.  They buy the lowest cost goods they can and that drives their competitors (our “local” businesses) out of business.   We lose retailers who can’t compete on price and we lose local manufactures who can’t compete on price.   They are great capitalists, but what happens when there are no more jobs left here?

I would suggest buying a few dollars worth of American nails (as the lame media seems to suggest) is trivial in comparison to buying high ticket items like American cars.  Buying American nails and screws won’t save this country, buying American cars would be MUCH more helpful.  Hooray for the Red White and Blue!

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« Reply #48 on: December 14, 2011, 11:57:00 AM »

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In Michigan we've been preaching to buy American made cars since the 1980s.  The rest of the Nation hasn't been listening.

we switched from American made cars in the '70s when American made cars became crap. i can put 200 thousand miles on a Honda, but not a GM car.  i still buy American made trucks because they are the best.  it's not always about money.  when we switched, the Honda was more expensive, but when you factor in miles and maintenance, it was cost effective.

on the consumer end, it's not all about the UAW.  on the manufacturing end, it is.  GM was in trouble primarily because of the legacy costs to union employees and the labor agreements that had people sitting around being paid for not working.  it is their fault also for having made those agreements. 

where my husband works the SEIU workers get either one year warning before layoff or firing, or they get one years pay.  if you really have to get them out of the position they are in, you can transfer them.  even if you put them in a small room counting post-it notes, they get their old pay for the year.  in the mean time, the union lawyer is probably going to challenge the whole thing and cause the business to spend even more money defending their actions.  again, the business agreed to this so it's on them for the agreement, but they can't afford the walkout by the unions, so they are over a stump in their skivvies.

Quote
As for the “union” that bee keepers love to hate; is it better to support people in a foreign country than to support your own fellow American citizens?

no.  what would be better would be that all states become right to work states.  that way workers could choose and businesses would have to compete for workers.  good for business and good for workers.  being forced into a union or being forced to hire union is wrong.  if you were forced to join anything else as a condition of employment, it would be illegal.
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

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« Reply #49 on: December 14, 2011, 12:07:11 PM »

Quote
I admit to spending (waisting?) a lot of time waiting for others to just catch up, but that's OK.  I'm not trying to convince 'anyone' of "anything.'  Not my style or purpose.  One can 'choose' to be rigid or not in ones thoughts. 


TBeek, i really want to thank you for having patience with us Neanderthals, Luddites, and Rednecks.  we are humbled in your presence!   lau



Quote
It is only too apparent that many 'don't bother to read' the posts of others around here (perhaps that adds to some confusion?), especially if the statements challenge their thinking.  Just 'one' example on this thread (just one?) assumes I've never talked to any 'bad guys' (or girls) during my work in Muslim Countries, which is just someones 'preconceived' notion, used solely to strengthen their own weak argument and not based on any reality.  So it goes.

"Better dead than Red"  Another American phrase mostly misunderstood by Americans, much like "Arab Spring"

indeed....and by some of the most "enlightened" and "intellectual" of the times.

Walter Duranty comes to mind.....bet he interviewed a lot of people too...........
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

 Alexis de Tocqueville
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« Reply #50 on: December 14, 2011, 12:39:06 PM »

So American made trucks are the best but American made cars are crap?  LOL, how logical is that?  I have to question that assertion since the same people are designing and building them both!  

My take on why the American car companies have fallen so far in the past 30 years comes down to pure old fashioned capitalism.  The imports were cheaper!  Pure and simple.  Why were the imports cheaper?  Now THAT is a good question.  In large part because the Japanese were manipulating the yen and our Government’s willingness to stand by “free trade” at the expense of killing off huge parts of our economy in favor of building up THEIR economies.  Why are OUR politicians playing for the wrong team?

Since everybody hates the UAW so much, I guess the politicians figured they could get away destroying the domestic auto business.  But what about the other WHOLE industries lost?  The radio business, the TV business, the phone business, the home appliance businesses?  Were they all “crap” too?  

If you think our only problem for loosing sales is quality, then how do you fix that?
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« Reply #51 on: December 14, 2011, 12:44:14 PM »

Can somebody explain to me WHY we don’t make TV’s in America anymore?  Why we don’t make radios/MP3?  Why we don’t make phones?  Why we don’t make 90% of our cars anymore? 

In Michigan we've been preaching to buy American made cars since the 1980s.  The rest of the Nation hasn't been listening.

2 things - price and quality

As our standard of living has improved, everybody, myself included, wants it all.  We want all the nice little toys for the kiddos.  We want all the latest electronic gadgets.  We want them cheap so we can buy more.  Yes, greed.  If we deny we are each greedy, we're living in dreamland.

Everybody knows that if 2 things are equal, the cheapest wins.  So the big push for quality and low cost.

Early in the 70s and 80s, the chinese market could win on one - cost.  Chinese stuff was crap.  We laughed at it, and still bought some.  But they were able to drive the quality up, and then we started buying it, because it was cheaper than what we make at home.  Now they are a threat, and we're losing out to them because we didn't focus on cost.
And that's where the unions have hurt US manufacturing, because that cost was so high.

Plus...more US companies are now selling all over the world.  It doesn't make sense anymore to have one manufacturing country, they can manufacture wherever now since they may want to manufacture closer to where they are selling.

I work for a Michigan plastics manufacturer.  We have a huge push for 1. Cost and 2. Quality.  There's a third push, and that is for locality.  Most of our customers want their product to show up when they need it.  We've actually been doing very well lately, plus we sell plastic parts to china, Germany, France, taiwan, mexico, and lots of other places.  We make parts for GM, Ford, Toyota, Honda, Daiwoo .  We're not union, and while we don't pay union wages, we do employ many people who need those jobs.  

I'm in IT, and part of my job is to use technology to simply jobs and improve processes so that we don't have to hire extra people. Cost cutting allows us to cut prices, which in turn allows us to sell more stuff, which requires that we hire more people.

It comes down to innovation.  Staying ahead of the curve. We haven't done that.  We made the standard and then just sat back. From what I've heard, the Chinese are EXCELLENT at taking a process and replicating it.  So they just need to copy what we've done and make it a little bit better, and they can win because of the labor costs.
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« Reply #52 on: December 14, 2011, 12:45:07 PM »

Bluebee,
I already said that it goes much deeper than your waving a flag and mentioning the red, white and blue. Slow down, and listen to others. Kathy has some good points.

Why so surprised at my post? Business and politics go hand in hand. I suppose they always will. I just recognize that unions collect funds, demand from their members, and support a political party I am at odds with. Yes, the unions will make a good decision on business when their own interest is at play. Like the pipeline that the unions see as to their advantage. But any other day of the week, as long as they are being pandered too by the folks that they help elect, they could care less about small businesses and those on the other side. Clear and simply...they elect who I don't support. And I am not bashful in stating that unions, political clout, special interests, and the laws being passed by the very members they help elect, are destroying this country. So please holdback on the "Red, white and blue" comments. I already said I am more than happy to support right to work operations with American workers, outside the corrupt and political unions of a few car companies.

And yes, I was a union member in the past. Not by choice, but by law. I did not have to formally join, but they took their dues anyways. They said my pay scale was due to their efforts, so I owed that to them. Funny thing was, it was the lowest paying job I ever held. The only thing I ever got back for my lost wages was a monthly magazine full of political hate, demands of who I should support, and where I should show up to protest. Unions are a political party as far as I am concerned.

You like unions good for you. Just as I think every person should decide what faith they belong, I think all faiths should exist. But I am not surprised when one group does not support another group at the offering plate. I think you also expect some just don't want to support a political organization for the mere sake of some flag waving.

Unions are for their own best interest. You already openly dismissed the efforts to buy American nails, yet get all patriotic over cars. Some talk the talk, some walk the walk. Few do much in the interest of their convictions. Maybe that is the problem. You just don't expect it or not have seen it prior. American goods, nails included, all day long. Buying union crap to support a political machine with special interests, just for the sake of some rhetoric, I'll pass.

It is funny how many folks comment on the colleges of today. About big business. About special interests. About the direction of this country. But mention the "fabric" of society in getting us to the position that we currently stand, and nobody feels you should say what you think. I think colleges are putting out wasted minds that somehow feel the world owes them everything. That their grants and debts should be paid by others. But if you say anything about "higher education", your seen as some kook. Most feel special interests are way out of bounds, especially with this "transparent" president we now have. But say anything about unions, which are the heart of special interests, and your seen as a kook.

Eventually, people need to speak up. Use your consumer dollars to those that support your positions. Choose your colleges cafefully. Choose who you buy your cars from carefully. And be wary of anyone waving a flag saying it is your responsibility to buy from a company that support political parties that you are opposed too.

I've got to run out. I'm sure this will keep this moving.  Wink
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« Reply #53 on: December 14, 2011, 12:47:36 PM »

TBeek, i really want to thank you for having patience with us Neanderthals, Luddites, and Rednecks.  we are humbled in your presence!   lau


You forgot about us bitter clingers!!
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« Reply #54 on: December 14, 2011, 12:47:50 PM »

Ah yes....I should of seen it coming. capitalism...the basis of all evil and failure. Yes, the right of consumers to decide where they spend their money, and decide what items to buy, is at fault.

I guess my whole last post will be very confusing I'm sure...  grin
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« Reply #55 on: December 14, 2011, 01:07:27 PM »

Well said Scads, I can’t argue with most of your points.  I must be off my game today  Smiley

Bjorn, I have never worked for a union, so it’s not like I’m waving their flag.  You make some valid points.  I just don’t think they’re to blame for the loss of our industry in the past 30 years.  And if the next 30 years go like the last 30, then where are we?   It's going to take a LOT of Obama's to fix the last 30 years of mess....

Yes, I do wave a flag for America, and American cars.  Hooray!  
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« Reply #56 on: December 14, 2011, 01:11:56 PM »

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You forgot about us bitter clingers!!

i'm truly sorry.  as a proud member of the bitter clingers, it was an unforgivable oversight on my part!
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

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« Reply #57 on: December 14, 2011, 01:33:50 PM »

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The imports were cheaper

but they were not.  at the time we made the switch, the Honda was quite a bit more than the American made car.  it was a matter of quality.  now the cost is roughly the same.  why?  because of many of the points made by Scads.  those "foreign" cars are being made here. 

when it comes to big trucks, there really isn't a foreign made option.  if you want something over 1/2 ton, you buy American.  the lines turning out the big trucks make a good product.  it's probably not cost effective for most foreign car makers to build bigger trucks as the need for them in other countries is not as great.  that may change as countries like India and China become more mobile and wealthy.  if some other country builds bigger trucks that are better quality and affordable, i'll buy one.

i'm not sure you have a good grip on what capitalism is.  it's about competition to bring the best product at the best price, to the consumer.  it works really well, but unions and regulations are an impediment to brining the best product at the best price, to the consumer.  that's not to say that we need no regulations, but we need few.
the costs of products in a working capitalist society (which we do not now have) would be determined by demand, not how much the employer was forced to dish out in employed "stuff".
since the employee is also a consumer, this is good for them also. 

we don't need unions.  i question whether we ever did, but that's another subject.  the market should determine wage and benefit.  if people are working and businesses need to compete for workers....like paying 15 dollars an hour to MickyDs employees in the Dakotas....the more people who are employed, the higher the wage.  the more the wage is manipulated, the fewer people are employed. 

i'm not sure what you think capitalism is.....?
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.....The greatest changes occur in their country without their cooperation. They are not even aware of precisely what has taken place. They suspect it; they have heard of the event by chance. More than that, they are unconcerned with the fortunes of their village, the safety of their streets, the fate of their church and its vestry. They think that such things have nothing to do with them, that they belong to a powerful stranger called “the government.” They enjoy these goods as tenants, without a sense of ownership, and never give a thought to how they might be improved.....

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« Reply #58 on: December 14, 2011, 01:35:48 PM »

IMO the "problem" with "American Manufacturing" started right after WW2. Everything was scarce, the GIs didn't want to go right back to work, the non GIs wanted to go back to what they were doing before the war (generalizing, women were unfairly treated, during this era).
Everybody had money to spend and wanted to BUY.  The motto of  All American Manufacturing was 'build it ,they'll buy it'! When the public is replacing, with new, their cars every 3 -4 years, there is no reason to over build. The unions only had to ask, and they got it.
I had an old greybeard, a fellow employee, who bragged about quitting and walking out of the back door of the shop, walked into the employment office, being rehired and given a better job.

Everybody working, Utopia Right? We were also buying everything we could import, from any capitalist country that would supply it. The Conventional Wisdom was: Better to buy from them, than to send Troops over, to straighten them out. We had seen what an ergonomically destitute nation was capable of. Then, add the Soviets take-over of Eastern Europe.

To compete against the home team ( i.e. shipping costs, dealership networks), one has to do it CHEAPER or BETTER or CHEAT.
American Manufacturing was already at a race to the bottom, in the quality / price department. " it broke? throw it away and get a new one!" or " they just don't build them like they used to"
Quality American Goods are found in MUSEUMS! An Example - the TUCKER Automobile.

Who was at fault: IMHO, The Manufactures, for not having the foresight. The Union, for not being able to control their greed. The Government, for thinking our workforce was indestructible. The Consumer, FOR DEMANDING CHEAP! ie WALMART
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« Reply #59 on: December 14, 2011, 01:47:15 PM »

And did I mention...capitalism, competition, drives innovation.  That's where we lost our manufacturing edge to the East - we sat on our laurels and watched money roll in.  By the time the money started to taper off, we were already behind the curve, the countries that we always dismissed as backward were catching up fast.  Because we had it made.  We were all living the american dream. That's American arrogance biting us. That's cost (unions, corporations, us) and quality. 

Ray, you hit the nail on the head.  There's no one point of failure, as OWS would have us think.

I think it is somewhat strange for any globalist or liberal person who wants one-world government to push "buy american".  What is the difference between an unemployed American and an unemployed Indian, Chinese, or Taiwanese person? (beside the fact that they're probably 100lbs and starving and living in a box whereas an american might lose a house and have to rent something smaller and drive a rusty car?)

Either way...I do believe that we're going to end like Rome.  We're in the "give us the circus and lions" phase, which is scary.
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Rick
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