In the 1920s the USA was the greatest manufacturing country in the world. It made more than a third of the worlds goods. Who was the USA's biggest customers? After Europe, it was China. Tons of goods were being sold to China, mainly to the aristocrats.
This was because the USA was good at manufacturing. There were ideas on how to manufacture, like the assembly line and specialized work and so and so forth that made work efficient.
Today that efficiency means automation. No amount of assembly line specialized work will help that. That's just the reality. And when it comes to costs, it's cheaper to get 1000 people working in a factory in China than it is in the USA. And nobody will come back, even if you raise tariffs to all hell (and not get kicked out of the WTO), to hire 1000 people to make Adidas shoes in the USA on an assembly line. That's an economic reality. If someone will open up a factory it'll be at the highest levels of automation possible to cut down costs and increase productivity.
You want to know why VW is still making most manufacturing in Europe, like in Germany? because innovation. There is an assembly factory in Dortmund i think where there is a train line coming into the factory with supplies and and whatever you need to build a car and the assembly line is public viewing. A customer can go in and look at how his car is assemblied by specialists in the final parts and screw in the final screws. PR + ingenuity and automation wherever it is possible as much as it is possible.
Retail is steadily and surely going to start employing less and less people. Walmart will start employing less and less people as machines will become smart enough to replace cashiers. It's just the reality of it. There already is a technology that by picture you can identify the product as long as you can see the bar code. So you don't need to precisely drag it in front of that scanner like it is now where you get fustrated that someone is too slow or has to do it more than once. The future of cashier work will be a line where you dump all the stuff you have, it goes through a machine and comes out on the other side already intelligently placed in bags and you just have either pay by card or put a money in one of those machines not unlike the ATMs that can count money like there are when you put money on the card. that's the future. You may not like it, but its' coming.
The reality is a lot of jobs are going to go away. And if you don't keep up with technology, they're still going to go away no matter what. The times of big industry that employs thousands of people is over. Next up, large retailers who employ thousands of people. And you know what? That'll be good if it is handled properly. Keep up with the times or else you lose because the times wait for no one.
Once owners move to have machines replace people, the world will be a very dangerous place as global wariness of the super rich is ever growing. While I am a firm believer in capitalism, I am afraid that the system has become too stacked to really call the global market free and competitive. At some point, if changes are not made, the whole house will come crashing down.
Last edited by jamesrage; 04-22-14 at 03:03 PM.
"A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murder is less to fear"
Cicero Marcus Tullius
"Free trade" has been nothing but trouble to the USA.
I consider such acts by American corporations to be treason.
they are shareholder-owned corporations with an international reach, many of which happen to be located/headquartered in the USA
and the board members have a fiduciary obligation to that corporation, NOT to the USA
they will direct the company in whatever way maximizes shareholder value. they have a legal obligation to do so
if their decisions benefit America, good thing. if their corporate policies are detrimental to America, too bad
again, because their focus is PROPERLY to enhance shareholder value. if they made decisions beneficial to America but detrimental to the corporation, they should be fired ... because they would have failed to uphold their fiduciary obligation to the corporation and its owners/shareholders
as for the OP, though, i think that we should only have tariff free trade with partner nations who play by the same ruleset. some of those countries have extremely dangerous working conditions, so if we're going to export jobs, we can at least export first world working conditions with them.