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Anything we can do they can do better ( or at least cheaper)


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#1 Nawtheasta

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Posted 27 March 2009 - 10:06 AM

A person asked President Obama during his internet question and answer session recently when some of the outsourced jobs would be coming back.
He was not encouraging. He believes that the way forward is training American workers for new challenges with an emphasis on Green energy. Such as Solar and Wind energy.
Recently in a near by city. Newburyport MA., a private company has installed a 292’ tall wind turbine. The purpose of the Turbine is to supply power to the manufacturing plant owned by the same family. It will supply about ¾ of their energy needs which are roughly the equivalent to the energy needs of 150 homes. It is very impressive looking Standing in a industrial park next to Rte 1. Kind of reminds me of a tripod from War of the Worlds.
There has been some opposition from neighboring houses. I won’t go into that here just let me say that a roaring Harley with straight pipes is 10 times more annoying then this.
Google Newburyport MA Wind turbine to read more.
Many state and local officials praise the project as an example of green energy. The only problem with this fitting perfectly with the Presidents vision of the future is that this was manufactured by Elecon Engineering of Gujarat, India
Now this is not meant as a slam against workers in India or China. They only want what we all want, a better life for themselves and their children.
The bottom line, which will eventually become apparent to all, is that to have and maintain a middle class in the USA or any country a viable manufacturing base must be maintained. It is what made every western country what it is today. We have no special intellect that will protect us. Workers in China and India are just as capable of making things as we are. Competition is fine. It keeps people and companies sharp and focused. Wholesale removal of any industry to areas that pay fractions of USA wages will in the long run destroy the way of life we as a nation have become accustom to.
My thoughts
Nawtheasta

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#2 ryan_w_quick

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Posted 27 March 2009 - 05:49 PM

i dont consider it a problem. but obama says "buy america." why? corporations are outsourcing A LOT of labor. this makes things from other countries much cheaper. in my opinion, unless he is willing to make some kind of rule or stimulus for corporations to stay in america (which he is not), he should just shut up

Edited by KoanYorel, 27 March 2009 - 06:13 PM.

"To do less than your best is to sacrifice the gift." Steve Prefontaine

"The things you own end up owning you." Tyler Durden

"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same god who has endowed us with sense, reason and intellect has intended us to forgo their use." Galileo

#3 KoanYorel

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Posted 27 March 2009 - 06:09 PM

Ryan, there is no need to entirely quote a previous post. Only such as you make a reply.
I've cut it away.
The only easy day was yesterday.

...some do, some don't; some will, some won't (WR)

#4 ryan_w_quick

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Posted 27 March 2009 - 06:39 PM

well this is the way that i feel. even if you feel that i have restated another member's perspective, i feel that we are limited enough, that a reinstatement of ideals, that i believe are a petition of an intelligent few, should be reflected by multiple members who subscribe to the same beliefs. i will not apologize or recant my post.
"To do less than your best is to sacrifice the gift." Steve Prefontaine

"The things you own end up owning you." Tyler Durden

"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same god who has endowed us with sense, reason and intellect has intended us to forgo their use." Galileo

#5 Nawtheasta

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Posted 28 March 2009 - 07:51 AM

Just because foreign sources can manufacturer something cheaper does not mean it is a healthy choice. In January of 2009 the USA exported 4 billion dollars worth of goods to China. We imported 24 billion.
By using very cheap labor a country can rapidly expand their domestic economy.
The country receiving the goods will quickly become accustom to the low prices. Their own domestic companies will either relocate to take advantage of this or succumb to the pressure.
Open markets should benefit both nations involved in the trade. In a perfect world the foreign country would be able to afford more of the higher cost items produced by the USA and other western nations. Unfortunately it does not seem to be working that way
In the long term, 1 or 2 decades, as more and more industries relocate the effect will be a lower standard of living in the importing country and the removal of completion for the exporting nation.

#6 Guest_Abacus 7_*

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Posted 28 March 2009 - 09:46 AM

:thumbsup:

How crazy is it?

America imports Food from other Countries?

America pays out Billions to Farmers just not to grow food?

:flowers: :trumpet:

#7 woodyblade

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Posted 28 March 2009 - 10:57 AM

Just because foreign sources can manufacturer something cheaper does not mean it is a healthy choice. In January of 2009 the USA exported 4 billion dollars worth of goods to China. We imported 24 billion.
By using very cheap labor a country can rapidly expand their domestic economy. The country receiving the goods will quickly become accustom to the low prices. Their own domestic companies will either relocate to take advantage of this or succumb to the pressure.
Open markets should benefit both nations involved in the trade. In a perfect world the foreign country would be able to afford more of the higher cost items produced by the USA and other western nations. Unfortunately it does not seem to be working that way
In the long term, 1 or 2 decades, as more and more industries relocate the effect will be a lower standard of living in the importing country and the removal of completion for the exporting nation.


Well actually think of it from a Business point of view, Would you pay workers £6 an hour (Roughly the Minimum Wage In Britain for people 21 or over, Around £5 for those aged 18-20 people like me and about £4.50 for those between 16-17) or would you pay people the equivalent of lets say £1 an hour if the currency was converted to another Countries currency.

I think I would know what to choose, but then again it does depend on what sort of manufacturing you think about, if you think of High Tech Manufacturing like Spacecraft and Electronic Technology it is financially viable to leave that in a well developed economy where you know the money will flood in for those sort of goods which also means you save on paying import tax, but if you think of things like a child's toy which need to be cheap or at a reasonable price are not going to make big profits if you used workers in a well developed economy where wages are higher so you are going to want to use the cheaper labour abroad, and that I think is steadily moving towards Cars as well?

It's just a thing to accept that is how economies grow, Britain was a massive exporting nation in the 1700's and 1800's because we had a massive manufacturing base as part of the Industrial Revolution as soon as that had developed we like other advanced economies moved onto the Services Sector (Tertiary Sector).

I'm assuming most people know how an Economy grows in terms of Sectors, The Primary Sector is normally the biggest in a Third World Country the Primary Sector being Agriculture (Only 1% of Britain's GDP is Agriculture now), When you start getting developing Economies like China and Brazil they have massive reliance on the Manufacturing and Export Sector (Secondary Sector and 23% of the British Economy) which provides them with lots of money so they can improve the countries infrastructure steadily they move there reliance off Manufacturing and move towards Services just as most advanced economies have like the UK, US, Japan etc which have Service Sectors at 75%, 80%, 73% of GDP respectively.

Now you may think that is surprising that Japan has a Service Sector that size when you think that it is a Massive Exporting Nation, it's just how Advanced Economies are and as they become less and less reliant of low cost manufacturing they move onto the higher cost/higher returns manufacturing that is Electronic Technology and Car Manufacturing, China, Brazil and other Developing Economies will be like the UK, US and Japan in the future and probably most others eventually, That will mean that these low cost goods we get now will steadily get more expensive in a few hundred years (Although this is just me guessing so I'm not sure).

Britain in 2007 exported $442 Billion with 15% of this from USA, 11% from Germany and 10% from France, and imported $621 Billion with 14% of that from Germany, 8.5% from USA and 7.3% each from China and the Netherlands. Of those exports over 80% of that Money came from our Manufacturing Base.

So we had a $170 Billion Trade Deficit, USA probably had one even bigger, eventually as these countries with Trade Surpluses (Developing Countries like China) spend there Money to improve their Economy these Trade Deficits will even out because as there Economy Advances and more people come above the poverty line they will want the High Tech Goods Countries like the UK, USA and Japan can produce i.e. Cars and Electronic Goods.

How long this will take in China is another matter but from what I have heard there Human Rights record is slightly better, so anyway that may seem boring for everyone but that's just how Economies work and eventually everything works out even if it doesn't look likely to happen :thumbsup:

EDIT: Sorted my Quote out now

Edited by woodyblade, 29 March 2009 - 07:03 AM.


#8 BlackSpyder

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Posted 28 March 2009 - 04:51 PM

America imports Food from other Countries?

America pays out Billions to Farmers just not to grow food?


Not sure where you heard those misinterpretations, but they are wrong.

America imports food,yes we do just like Australia, China, Canada, and the UK. We can't grow Sugar Cane in Virginia but we can grow Peanuts and somewhere there's a place that can grow Sugar Cane but not peanuts. That's the basis of trade. I have this, I want that, You have that, you want this.

We also export a lot of food.


As for the paying for not to grow food. There are various programs involving "Land Management" and such that promote the non use of a field for a given period of time. This is to avoid another "Dustbowl" period from land over use, but for the most part its a crop rotation issue where you've eliminated all of one nutrient group from the ground and it is suggested to plant a different crop which will replenish the nutrient base and deplete to other nutrients which have built up in the soil. Very Complex System that I dont understand and I've been learning about it for 25 years now.

There are also programs in effect for "crop losses" where your crop is wiped out by natural disaster or such, but you are required to pay into those programs just like insurance on your home or car.

But there are no programs (to my knowledge) that allow you to sit on your butt and not grow any crops and get paid for it. \END Farm Boy rant

Moving on,

It's really a lack of US based products competing with foreign products as woodyblade mentioned or the shear price gap between two similar products.

Edited by BlackSpyder, 28 March 2009 - 04:55 PM.

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#9 buddy215

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Posted 28 March 2009 - 07:28 PM

Yes, as unbelievable as it might be for some, landowners in the USA do get paid for not farming or ranching their land.

Two articles on the subject and more Farm Program info you can read are in the links below.

Farm Program Pays $1.3 Billion to People Who Don't Farm

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/conte...6070100962.html
Harvesting Cash--Working a Farm Subsidy
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/conte...6071000403.html

Adjoining my property here is about 20 acres that is not being farmed. I have carved some walking trails thru the young trees and scrub with a bushhog.


EDIT: unable to create link or use bold. Anyone know what is happening? Is it me or the site? Always worked before.

groovicus, you fixed it, thanks

Edited by buddy215, 28 March 2009 - 09:12 PM.

“Every atom in your body came from a star that exploded and the atoms in your left hand probably came from a different star than your right hand. It really is the most poetic thing I know about physics...you are all stardust.”Lawrence M. Krauss
A 1792 U.S. penny, designed in part by Thomas Jefferson and George Washington, reads “Liberty Parent of Science & Industry.”

#10 groovicus

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Posted 28 March 2009 - 08:36 PM

unable to create link or use bold. Anyone know what is happening? Is it me or the site?

'Twas me. I was adjusting some settings, and I borked the bb settings. Sorry.

#11 Nawtheasta

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Posted 08 April 2009 - 12:50 PM

Hi Woodyblade
Sorry I have not posted back before this. Time has not allowed. I thank you for a well thought out response.
Several points.
Business main concerns are maximizing profits for the owners/ shareholders
It may make perfect business sense to expend the minimum necessary to achieve maximum profits. Societies have decided through their governments that this is not always in the best interest of the people. Compare working conditions in the US and UK in the 1890s to present day conditions. As working conditions and wages improved so did the standard of living. In the early days of the Auto industry Henry Ford started paying his workers $5.00 per day. A very generous amount at the time. He knew his customers were to be the working man, not peasants.
You mention economic stages. But the question should be are these stages that a nation passes through or achieves.
Britain’s agriculture did not decline to 1% of GDP because armies of peasants with hoes in foreign lands worked cheaper then the Yorkshire farmer on his tractor. It was more then likely due to the modern transportation methods of food products and the efficiency of scale possible with modern farming practices in the USA and elsewhere.
The oil rich nations do not need to make or grow anything. As long as the oil holds out.
There is no simple answer to what a country should make or should allow others to make. But it should not necessarily be left completely a business decision. Any nation has the right to retain industries and skills that they deem necessary to maintain the standard of living in that nation. How long will the USA be a great nation if everyone with less then an engineering degree is relegated to selling imported garden rakes at Wall Mart???
My Thoughts
Nawtheasta

#12 GTK48

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Posted 08 April 2009 - 01:08 PM

^ Good Point. The UAW here has priced themselves out of work. Foreign auto manufactures that are located in the US produce autos that are of higher quality and at a cheaper cost per auto. GM will file bankruptcy no matter what Obama and the Bailout Congress do.

#13 woodyblade

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Posted 08 April 2009 - 04:08 PM

'Nawtheasta'
Hi Woodyblade
Sorry I have not posted back before this. Time has not allowed. I thank you for a well thought out response.

------------------------------------------
No problem at all :thumbsup:

'Nawtheasta'

You mention economic stages. But the question should be are these stages that a nation passes through or achieves.
Britain’s agriculture did not decline to 1% of GDP because armies of peasants with hoes in foreign lands worked cheaper then the Yorkshire farmer on his tractor. It was more then likely due to the modern transportation methods of food products and the efficiency of scale possible with modern farming practices in the USA and elsewhere.

-------------------------------------------
Sorry knew I would forget to mention something, that's something I do a couple of times when rambling on like I did in that post above :trumpet:, you've actually mentioned as quoted in italics above what I should have added in, The advancement of technology and the tractor being part of it in terms of agriculture just like in the advanced economies and increasingly common in the developing economies where big parts of manufacturing is getting done by robots (I know this because I'm learning about HCI in College, Human Computer Interaction which relates to how technology and more specifically computers have improved economies and what effect on jobs it has had).

Just something I learnt about the city I live in a few months ago, as is shown in my location at the left I live in the Steel City aka Sheffield obviously well known for it's stainless steel (amongst other forms of steel, With stainless steel being pioneered here in 1903, Basically all the cutlery in your Kitchen and what ever else it is used to make), Most of the steel factories used to be along the 2 rivers which run through Sheffield, River Sheaf and River Rother which are both highly polluted because of the industry but anyway this obviously decreased as competition increased from around the World especially through the 1960's to 1970's, The approximate land the steel industry takes up now is 10 times less than at it's peak but it is producing more steel than it has ever done in it's history with the industry worth £1.8 billion to the Sheffield Economy that being based on 2003 figures it might have hit £2 billion by now the whole Sheffield economy is worth around £7 billion (2003 figure) so it is worth over 25% to the economy.

Just shows how automation of manufacturing has come along, obviously lost quite a few jobs at the time but with that comes other jobs which are needed to maintain the robots and machines.

'Nawtheasta'

The oil rich nations do not need to make or grow anything. As long as the oil holds out.
There is no simple answer to what a country should make or should allow others to make. But it should not necessarily be left completely a business decision. Any nation has the right to retain industries and skills that they deem necessary to maintain the standard of living in that nation. How long will the USA be a great nation if everyone with less then an engineering degree is relegated to selling imported garden rakes at Wall Mart???
My Thoughts
Nawtheasta

---------------------------------------------
I agree it shouldn't be left a business decision but that's just the way it is, With the free markets we have Governments don't have the right to intervene and stop jobs going abroad but when they do the more High Tech industries which have more money in them but obviously less jobs are created but loads of support jobs are related to it the supply lines and computer technology etc, I think I mentioned this in the last post but just to say it again.

So as I said about Sheffield above as the industry gets more mechanised and automated it seems common place in the more advanced economies that the Service sector does dominate the GDP figures of a economy.

What is puzzling me though is what will happen if all economies advance to the same stage we are at e.g. Current Advanced Economies?
Where the Service sector is biggest in the Economy surely that can't happen?, because what I think would happen is that low priced goods become a lot more expensive e.g. Furniture and Clothes, while the High Tech industry would become flooded maybe leading to cheaper prices for these type of goods. Although this is assuming all economies advance the same way which is highly unlikely in my opinion.

So I would say as is part of life some people get the higher skilled jobs and some are stuck in the supermarket or lower paid jobs.

Anyway another long post, me and my rambling :flowers:

#14 Nawtheasta

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Posted 09 April 2009 - 08:59 AM

Hi GTK48
Unfortunately for all the good that unions do the cumulative effect over time seems to get them out of balance with the world around them. Also I seem to recall hearing years ago that one of the reasons the foreign auto makers built plants here was so that they would not need to worry as much if the US were to put in trade tariffs
Hi Woodyblade
There are ramblings and then there are ramblings. You make interesting points that make one think. Good ramblings.
Advances in automation and manufacturing technology benefit all and cannot be feared. It represents human progress.
Ref. UK Stainless Steel production.
In 2006 China became the world’s largest producer of stainless steel. With volume comes efficiency of scale. Would it not make sense now or in a few years for the owners of UK stainless steel plants to contract out for production? The corporations will survive, for now, but instead of large costly mills they would simply bring in freighters full of the same products but at much lower cost. Of course eventually the foreign companies would decide that they could make more profits by selling direct to the consumers of the stainless. With a little aggressive pricing the former steel producers, by then just sales offices, will be driven out of business. It may make perfect business sense for the UK to not make Stainless but are you a stronger country if this happens?
In regards to governments not having the right to intervene in a free market.
This is only partial true. If a country was shown to be using slave or convict labor most countries in the west would ban trade in those goods.
But pay the workers $.25 USD ( .17GBP) per hour and all is ok (?????)
You mention you are attending college. . A wise choice. My son is a sophomore at a state college here.
I would assume that some of your professors speak of the disastrous results of protective tariffs in the past. This is very true. I would argue however that the world has never had an enormous country, with a skilled work force willing to work for such low wages. Our manufacturers have an almost irresistible temptation to move operations to that land and bring back the finished product here for sale.
One more thing before I go on too long.
Notice when you are having conversations or attending lectures that those that speak against any form of trade tariff are not personally in danger of losing their source of income from the effects of too cheap imports.
Best Regards
Nawtheasta

Edited by Nawtheasta, 09 April 2009 - 08:59 AM.


#15 Guest_Abacus 7_*

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Posted 09 April 2009 - 11:18 AM

:trumpet:

Actually in Australia we went through a similar thing where our Idustries were slowly disolving due to Imports some 30 or more years ago.

Government imposed Tariffs, then relaxed them if Local Manufacture and Fitting was allowed in Imported Vehicles, for an example. What a total Disaster that was.

In the 1980's the Banking Industry basically collapsed, like what is happening now?

New Government, under Bob Hawke, floated our Dollar, allowed Imports, and looked to other means, because by then we were ranked as a Third World Country.

Now we sit nicely in the World because of our Resources that are in World wide Demand and our Banking System is one of the World Leading in strictness. Just try to open up an account here.

There is a way, but you really have to think about it?

Paying Farmers not to Grow Food is not one of them. Beter if they were paid to grow food for other uses, such as Alternative Fuels?

:thumbsup: :flowers:




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