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by Mal Marsden - 06/16/22 7:00 pm
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BevanC, BSA_WM20, Geoff, Gordon Gray, GrandPaul, henryanthony, Hillbilly bike, Jon W. Whitley, kevin, MikeG, Noe, ricochetrider, Rocketman71
Total Likes: 57
Original Post (Thread Starter)
#816991 07/21/2020 10:31 PM
by Rocketman71
Earlier in my life, I worked for a large defense contractor. We built radar and communications equipment for the US and foreign military and civilian governments. We did not produce products in high volume production. They were smaller lots of complex and sophisticated electronic equipment. Ground based equipment and some antennas were quite large.

When I began working there we brought raw materials in one end of the factory and put out finished products on the other end. We had shops for welding, machining, plating, sheet metal, painting, coatings, assembly, and testing. It was a vast plant and had 20k employees for some of the time I worked there.

In the 20 years that I worked there, we went from a manufacturer to a general contractor. When I left, they had very little manufacturing left. Much of the work that was done there was design and testing. And we were farming more of the design work out. Most of the contracts were for integration of equipment produced elsewhere. I guess there was more money to be made with that business plan. We still had some model shops and could produce some prototypes and spares. If I remember correctly, (and I may not) there were about 8K workers there when I left, mostly engineering. That was 20 years ago. The product was becoming documents. I know the company is still a major government contractor, but I don’t know about the plant.

Like the plant where I worked, most of the movement of work to contractors was done to save on labor costs. We were a union plant and it was seen as a way to increase the bottom line. All manner of other manufacturing moved overseas to take advantage of cheaper labor costs, and this continues today.

Both of the major candidates for president of the United States are campaigning on bringing at least some manufacturing back to the homeland. They promise jobs and prosperity from this. Of course promises of jobs with so many unemployed sounds great. But many promises from politicians go unfulfilled for various reasons.

Bringing large scale manufacturing back to the States poses several problems. It is not something that can be done overnight. Many multinationals do not own the factories in which their products are produced. They will not want to move manufacturing to the United States for the same reasons that it left here. If forced to leave China to have their products produced, they will still want to go to a place where cheap labor can be exploited. The relentless pursuit of maximum profit will still drive the decisions in the board room.

Building and operating factories is expensive, especially in the US. The modern high volume production factory does not need nearly the number of employees as the old days. And a very minor amount of unskilled labor is required. CAD/CAM and robotics has come a long way since I left industry. Of course small volume production will still need more humans.

China has a large and skilled manufacturing work force and capability. We do not. In the US, trained and experienced personnel who are skilled in manufacturing processes, factory planning, and operation would be in high demand. To supply the labor force required, more education would need to be available.

It took many years to shed our capabilities, and I believe the return road will be even longer. Disentangling from China would be a plus, but there would be a price to pay. Higher cost of goods would be certain. Government incentives will be needed. And of course counting on the government to make all the right moves is a long shot bet.

That being said, I laud the return of manufacturing to the US. It might even be a good career choice for a young person to pursue in the future. That is if a future is available.

Remember when the cheap junk was made in Japan?

I am an observer.
Liked Replies
#817055 Jul 22nd a 03:00 PM
by Lannis
Originally Posted by GrandPaul
It's HORRIBLE, but I'm tired. I worked my BUTT off ALL my life.

It's not "Horrible" by anyone's standards. Our great-grandparents worked harder than we did their whole lives, with no hope of retirement, fleets of fun motorcycles, vacation trips, lovely shops always full of groceries, or anything like it.

They had no heart bypass operations, no knee replacements, no cornea transplants. They worked until they couldn't work anymore, their skin went gray from poor circulation, they went to limping on a crutch, slowly going blind, and died.

Matter of fact, that's the way most of the world lives right now. WE tend to judge the material quality of our lives by the folks next to us, or "rich" people that we envy, but what about the billion farmers and shopkeepers in India? What about the billion farmers in China? What about the hundreds of millions of subsistence farmers, herders, and desert dwellers in Africa? What about the millions of people in the favelas of Sao Paulo or Rio de Janerio?

Your life, and mine, and the life of ANYONE who has access to this list, would seem to any of these billions like the fantasy dream of unattainability. Doctors, air conditioning, cars, people sending you money for doing nothing, travel when you want to ... they can never hope for anything like that, any more than my great-grandfather could.

And yet WE have it, but we bitch and moan and complain about how someone we read about on the info-porn network has MORE than we do, and how it isn't FAIR, and about Income Inequality, and about how people shouldn't HAVE to work so much, isn't it awful .... ?

Not me. I sometimes can't believe that my life came out as well as it did, and I appreciate beyond measure what I have, regardless of how long and hard I worked to get it ....

3 members like this
#817402 Jul 25th a 10:51 AM
by Hugh Jörgen
Hugh Jörgen
Originally Posted by BevanC
... Without constraint, capitalism will always lead to the creation of a small group of uber wealthy elite at the expense of everyone else. In that respect it is no better than communism.
What’s the difference between capitalism and communism?
Under capitalism man exploits man.
Under communism it’s the other way around.
3 members like this
#817787 Jul 28th a 04:20 PM
by Geoff
Originally Posted by kevin
its a different world now. my last year in college i was working full time as a cashier at a circle K, taking a full time class-load as an undergraduate in one department, and working as a graduate research associate in that same department for an MS and finishing another MS in the same university but a different department.

i did all this while taking out no more than $7500 in student loans for both graduate degrees. my kids cant do that anymore.

the difference is that back then higher education was valued by society and university tuition was subsidized. today we have a conservative social agenda to discredit education and informed experts, and the first step in accomplishing that was to make college education vastly more expensive. so the national subsides are gone.

you get what you pay for, and if an educated and informed citizenry is not what you want, then don't pay for education and you will succeed.

Sorry, but you are flat out wrong.

College tuition started to increase greater than the rate of inflation after the creation of the Dept of Education and the meddling of the federal government in the education system. With the unfettered flow of Federal funds into higher education, costs skyrocket artificially. The education you believe people valued before is long gone, replaced with bs courses. After the Navy I thought about going back to school - however after realizing I would pay an astronomical sum to go to a state school and squander the first 4 semesters with bs gen-ed requirements the shine was off for me.

My wife gives out the subsidy money as write this. What you believe is gone is very much alive and well, and is know becoming so bloated and ridiculously politically motivated that kids who have no reason to go to college, who should be sent back to middle school due to the failure of the local education system, are now being given free rides, plus some spending money to go. Most bomb out within a year.

Yet another example of the rot that exists - my daughter is applying to medical schools this summer. The applications no longer ask about your academic achievements, but how you have been discriminated against, or overcame some obstacle that the 'man' has placed before you. Education has truely gone to hell, and it certainly wasn't people with a conservative streak.
3 members like this
#817831 Jul 28th a 09:03 PM
by Lannis
Originally Posted by ricochetrider
[quote=Irish Swede]

Admittedly, I'm probably more open minded than many around this forum-


Oh yes, of course. Amazingly enough, that's exactly what everyone thinks about themselves ... "I'M the open-minded one, YOU'RE closed-minded and just won't listen ...."

And "Here, read this stuff by an avowed leftist, a firm no-matter-what Never-Trumper according to himself, and get a balanced view of what conservatives REALLY think".

Really? REALLY?

3 members like this
#817083 Jul 22nd a 09:03 PM
by Geoff
Originally Posted by rick e.
I have spend about 35 years to date in manufacturing and have spent plenty of time in the Far East. I also was a working on my Journeyman status as a machinist in the 70's and very quickly saw that was a loser job occupation and very quickly moved West to this new "High Tech" world. I do enjoy the machinist skills I did obtain for working on bikes....

A couple of thoughts from my experiences moving manufacturing from the US to overseas. FYI; The shop I work at is Highly Automated and has 55,000 employees world wide.

I have no idea why "China" keeps coming up as if that country has ALL the manufacturing. Yes, they may have most today but we have plants all over Asia.

This China "cheap crap" talk...China will build anything you want to any quality standard you wish. There are high quality products coming out of Asia that the US could only dream of manufacturing.

Vertical Integration is basically gone and is not a sound model for volume manufacturing. That was even dying out in the US decades ago.

The Highly educated work force is beyond belief in Asia. $30K per year for someone with a Masters that will work 12 hours a day.

The supply chain through out Asia is world class. This is key and folks have no idea how big that engine is.

Automation to the rescue? Most all 'Bot' bits are from Asia.

Except for a few select areas, manufacturing that left is never coming back. Maybe in 100 years after some terrible event.

This going back to the "good old days" ain't going to happen. I've seen the other side and sadly there is no way the US could ever compete. Even if factories could be build for free and the Tax rate was zero.

The US needs to reinvent itself and move forward.

Its in the midst of doing that. The current situation is bringing to light the fact we are dependent upon a manufacturing base that can be cut off willy-nilly. "Evolving" western economies into service economies is bogus. Moving manufacturing to Asia is as heinous as exploiting African labor 300 years ago to grow tobacco in Virginia. Loading up young people with back breaking debt so they can work at Walmart or a Starbucks is criminal, and currently done in the name of reinventing the US economy away from such filth as manufacturing.

Its bad when the only thing we still make from raw material is weapons systems, and even that is now at the brink. The US, UK, Canada, Mexico, etc... doesn't need to make everything - but we need to be able to support our own populations with products that can be traded with like minded countries.

Just my $0.02 - vomited out without proof reading as usual smile.
2 members like this
#817152 Jul 23rd a 12:56 PM
by ricochetrider
We here in the U.S. are blessed and cursed simultaneously. As mentioned we have limited growth industries: Weapons and prisons. Neither is anything to be particularly proud of.

Manufacturing coming back? Laughable doesn't even begin to describe the chances. The bulk of our latest jobs are either assembly jobs or service jobs- both have grown in recent years as we move more and more to being a society where no single, unskilled job pays enough to provide the worker with a living wage. People decry the fact yet also resist advancing the so-callled minimum wage to anything resembling a 21st century reality, in which here's no such thing as a "starter job": high school students now compete with adults for even the lowliest job opening. The students are trying to make gas money or summer vacation money, the adults are those who work 2 or 3 full and part time jobs simply to make ends meet.

This whole economic crash brought only cover 19 shines too bright a light on the fact that many people here in the good ol US of A, are but one missed paycheck away from homelessness. Just take a minute, sit quietly. Envision for yourself, how you might feel if a sudden influx of only 600.00 a week is WAY MORE money than you've been making at however many jobs you've been working.

Another unsightly reality- seen by the empty shelves in grocery and other stores lately here, lack of toilet paper, lack of cleaning sulkies, lack of hand sanitizer (specifically Purell)- is that there is now basically zero competition in most areas; one or two companies supply all chicken and chicken "products", one or two companies supply all or most meat period. The list of massive conglomerate entities is growing and thus the makers share for entrepreneurs and start-ups is shrinking. When we have a rare catastrophic occurences such as this covid pandemic, and people panic shop and hoard goods, quite nearly the entire the supply chain, fed by only a few entities- OR from overseas and offshore companies, crashes like a ton of bricks!

Here's a good ARTICLE by the HARVARD BUSINESS REVIEW that details some of this and delves into problems, fixes and some benefits of perhaps rethinking some things here, economically.

A book was recently (late 2019) written about just this, comparing EU markets and economies to U.S. ones, not necessarily favorably. Here is a GREAT INTERVIEW with the book, entitled The Great Reversal, on how EU market models are more competitive and subsequently, their economies are stronger and more resistant to sudden shifts and changes. One point the author makes is how mobile phone competition is greater outside the U.S.- so we here pay much more than is typical elsewhere.


We, at our age, grew up in and are benefitting from the last of the American Dream. If you don't have much contact with younger working folks, or do not get out into the world to see how people - and I don't mean "kids" necessarily, but adults well into their 30s and 40s today act and are- then you wouldn't know or see any signs of how people live, per se.

There are big differences, believe me. At our age (I'm 63- 64 in September), most of us had traditional upbringings: parents who stayed married, dads who carried the game, mom being the homemaker and raising the kids, grandparents who lived outside of town or on farms, or worked hard all their lives in a single factory or other job, raising their families and having retirement pensions, vacations, and health insurance.

Two generations later, by & large, there is zero sign any of this in folks. People weren't and aren't taught any life skills, many never go to college or learn any sort of trade. The current American Dream has been reduced to a hope that one may simply get by.

Having worked in major cities and many small and medium sized towns around the Mid Atlantic Region
(most recent years I've had as many as 35 W2s- so I DO get around),
I see this daily. I work with people of all ages, all ethnicities and skin colors, of all walks of life, most religions, and men and women combined- and there are MASSIVE differences from generation to generation. OF COURSE this isn't the hard, fast, across-the-board rule,

BUT so many people seem so vastly removed from anything I knew growing up- and you can see it in the world all around you, IF you choose to see it.

The economic realities WE all faced growing up and coming out into the world no longer exist for young adults coming out into the world today. Many or most of us had career paths. We went to college (and were NOT sacked with hundreds of thousands of dollars of debt for it), took over a family business, or learned a trade. We came up on the heels of our grandparents and parents ONLY ONE OF WHOM worked and all of whom raised families on their single income source.

We came up in a time when health insurance was pretty much a given. My dad was Army, so it wasn't even anything that we had any thoughts of whatsoever. Hit by a truck- asI was at age 12? Almost died? 2 months in hospital? NO PROBLEM, didn't cost my family a single dime! Try to imagine how devastating something like that would be, financially for a young family today.

We came up in a time when everyone's dad worked, raised their families, and retired happily to their sleepy little lives in their mellow small and medium sized towns, or idyllic country acreages.

We were taught manners and taught things like how to set the table. We rebuilt lawnmowers with our dads or went hunting & fishing with our fathers, uncles, brothers, sisters, cousins, and grandads. We fixed our bicycles and built tree forts.

Our country saw huge growth in just about every regard, up until about the rte 1970s (guessing). Just think about our parents and grandparents snapping back after the Great Depression of the 1930s and earl 1940s. Think of the changes they saw in technology alone in their lifetimes, from horse drawn buggies to massive airliners, to men walking on the moon. From local newspapers and distant radio broadcasts, to color tv, to BIG screen tv. From switchboard operators & party-line telephones with 2 digit phone numbers to mobile phones and 4 area codes for every state in the nation.

That time, the true "glory days" of U.S. Democracy is GONE.

It'll never happen again. We are at a crossroads. We need badly to reshape the economy, or at the very least to address some clear problems. I don't pretend to have any answers, but it seems clear that the "fix" needs to be wide in scope, and it needs to benefit people from the bottom up.

People back then had something else we don't have any more, too- compassion for one another. A sense that "we" are (were) all in it together. That, as can be seen in some of these comments- is long gone. I am of the opinion that we desperately need to get back to simply giving a damn about one another, our fellow humans, our fellow citizens. No "fix" will do much good if nobody gives a sh*t about their neighbor.
2 members like this
#817155 Jul 23rd a 01:23 PM
by Lannis
Right this minute, ANY 18-year-old in the USA, who isn't lazy and isn't addicted to videos, liquor, or dope, can take responsibility for their lives, get themselves trained in a trade or profession, learn how to show up for work every day, and make a living as good or better than I made. Both of my sons, and most of my nieces and nephews (the ones who aren't lazy and spoiled) are doing exactly that, raising families, making money, owning homes. Arborists, mechanical engineers, nurses, teachers, machinists, they're part of a community and making not only their lives but their communities better places.

ANY 18-year-old who wants to hyperventilate over the news, live their lives in some virtual social-media world, and lay around the house listening to all the "Oh, woe is me, the world is such a hard place, I'm never going to be able to make it" ... well, that's exactly what will happen to them. They'll never be able to make it because they've listened to the Big Lie "You're never going to be able to make it in today's horrible, horrible world" they keep hearing.

2 members like this
#817215 Jul 23rd a 08:25 PM
by Lannis
Originally Posted by rick e.
Originally Posted by Lannis
Originally Posted by GrandPaul
As long as our government is spending other people's money paying subsidies, they'll be making a "profit"...

And "Unemployment" is like any other commodity; the more you pay for it, the more of it you get. Why should anyone even look for a job when they can get paid the equivalent of $28,000 a year for sitting on their arse? Stop the subsidies and watch people get real, whether colleges or work ....


Why work? Maybe $28K pays a mortgage/rent, feeds a family, pays the bills, and buys health insurance with some left over for retirement in your neck of the woods, but not around here.

I wouldn't want to try it any more (I could do it once) .... I was helping a lady fill out her "housing assistance" forms so she could rent my friend's house, and she needed to prove she could qualify for rent assistance. 3 kids, no husband. Between TANP, EBT, rent assistance, and all her other "benefits" (as she calls them), she was just short of $48,000/yr, but still qualified for reduced rent. You've got to help, but it's discouraging; she's never even known anyone with a job, much less had one herself.

For every "brother who needs a hand up, have a little compassion", there are 3 more who have been tolled into the welfare plantation for 3 generations and have no idea that the whole world doesn't work like that; and no intention of ever getting out.

It's not all one way, but it's not all the other way either. "More Of What Got Us Here" probably isn't the answer.

2 members like this
#817414 Jul 25th a 01:30 PM
by Rocketman71
That dirty and dangerous workplace was more a thing of the late 19th and early 20th century. Children were working these jobs too. The conditions were terrible and it was no secret. Workers revolted and many were killed and massacred.

Anarchism and Communism were big movements at that time. Revolt was happening on many parts of the globe and was successful in some places. See Russia and the 1st World War. In the US, labor was attempting to organize and the companies for whom they worked hired the strike breakers to crush the revolt. Shortly thereafter the task was transferred to the government, which was fully behind the owners of the companies. The coal miner rebellion in Pennsylvania which resulted in the formation of the first state police organization is an example of this.

Doesn't this look and sound similar to what's happening in the US today? It may have been a different match that lit the fuse and the outcome may be different this time because government reaction may be different.

I am an observer.
2 members like this
#817806 Jul 28th a 06:17 PM
by Geoff
Originally Posted by DavidP
Originally Posted by Geoff
My wife gives out the subsidy money as write this. What you believe is gone is very much alive and well, and is know becoming so bloated and ridiculously politically motivated
BS general education requirements, such as how to compose and proof read a sentence?

Hey, I never said I was perfect smile - my ability to post here has always left something to be desired - its a virtual pub for Pete's sake! Besides, I did take my required English classes and did quite well a long time ago. I will attempt to proofread my posts better prior to posting just for you Dave.

How long has it been since you were exposed to the system? The gen-ed requirements are BS. I wanted to go back to school after operating nuclear reactors in the Navy, and at that point in life I didn't really give a hoot about art history, psychology, sociology, etc... It was two years of garbage courses, with the last two actually focused on what I was going to school to learn, which probably should have been in the first two, so there are two years to really learn and apply that knowledge.

Ever wonder why a high school education is not what it used to be? Ever wonder why it now takes at least a masters degree to get the same sort of job someone 30 years ago received with a bachelors? Why is it when you hire someone directly from college with a science type degree they can't do anything? They don't even seem to know the scientific method, and when something doesn't work, they just keep redoing it - exactly the same way? Surely it cannot be a thing with Millennials - we don't want to open that box. But they all know about the 82 genders, conservatives are equivalent to the SS, and the world is going to end in 10 years unless the western economies commit suicide and revert to 1765.
2 members like this
#817946 Jul 29th a 05:19 PM
by GrandPaul
Forget all of the rest of the chart, the positioning of CNN and FOX tells one all they need to know. It essentially ranks CNN as more credible than FOX which is demonstrably absurd.
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#817962 Jul 29th a 06:15 PM
by rick e.
rick e.
Originally Posted by Geoff
Originally Posted by rick e.
Originally Posted by Geoff

Ever wonder why a high school education is not what it used to be? Ever wonder why it now takes at least a masters degree to get the same sort of job someone 30 years ago received with a bachelors? Why is it when you hire someone directly from college with a science type degree they can't do anything? They don't even seem to know the scientific method, and when something doesn't work, they just keep redoing it - exactly the same way? Surely it cannot be a thing with Millennials - we don't want to open that box. But they all know about the 82 genders, conservatives are equivalent to the SS, and the world is going to end in 10 years unless the western economies commit suicide and revert to 1765.

No. No. Not true. Really?

Sadly not this summer, but the shop I work at brings in ~50-100 College interns @25$ per hour for the summer and sometimes hires up to 200 new grads at a time. Lot's of really really smart 'kids' out there. Last summer I worked with a group of them and they developed a fully automated laser driven scope to count and sort sub-micron particles. They wrote the software,CAD modeled, oversaw the mechanical fab,spec'd everything and assembled all the mechanics/electronics. And then they did a complete gauge R and R for repeatability. Super nice kids, respectful, focused..... What were your experiences like?

I am not sure where on Earth you are located, your mileage varied and you got a good result. I was hiring chemistry degrees to either blend gases into highly stable calibration standards for regulatory compliance with emissions, or analyzing them. Not the sexiest working or working environment, but I gave a lot of leeway to think outside of the box regarding how it was always done - put their own stamp on it - and move forward in a career that is slowly aging out.

My experience with them really wanted me to hire other Navy nuke vets. Our training / education was a watered down version of an engineering degree force fed over the course of 2 to 2-1/2 years before you got to the fleet. Besides being able to think on an atomic level, we knew how to look at a system and realize if you tweak something over here, you will get a different result over there. College graduates couldn't figure it out - the ones I could find were taught how to follow a set of directions, but couldn't deviate from the procedure.

Located? I'm located in western USA and work for a 20 billion US$ gross sales manufacturing company that manufactures in Asia and develops products in USA. (Think high tech complex electro-mechanical widgets.)

50K plus employees (most all in Asia) 3k plus USA with >700 phd engineers...chemists.

I cut my teeth in the Rust Belt in manufacturing as a kid. Ran away as soon as I could come up with a couple hundred bucks along with my 68 Triumph. I still have it.

I would like to believe I know a bit about manufacturing, why folks need an education, why jobs are not coming back, supply chains.....and so on. And yes, I will call out BS and misinformation based on first hand observations. I hear at least five languages spoken everyday along with very diverse group of people. Thanks to diversity in the mist of this pandemic the shop I work for has not missed a beat and everyone is gainfully employed worldwide. Although many working from home.

Why Earth? Its because people need to learn the world is getting smaller everyday and we are all in this together. This tribal BS, conspiracy theories, and silly paranoia, their out to 'control' you is getting a bit boring. Along with a dis-regard to science and the importance of the Arts. People really need to get out in the world or tune into a new station. I see great success everyday when educated folks from around the world work together towards a common goal. Too many people with weak minds falling for this divide and conquer stuff and thinking we need to go backwards to make things great-again. All this talk about working hard and it will be ok is only part of the recipe. You have to work hard and work 'smart' with an open mind.
2 members like this
#817051 Jul 22nd a 02:17 PM
by GrandPaul
The older I get, the less I care.

Especially since I've retired, and will now attempt to squeeze as much as I can, from what I paid into for almost 50 years. I HOPE Social Security lasts AT LEAST until I kick off, or my play money will dry up.

It's HORRIBLE, but I'm tired. I worked my BUTT off ALL my life.

I don't have any "investments" apart from a decent classic bike collection that I can sell off gradually to fund my modest desires. As far as our family existence and mortgage, that shifted to my wife who shares an income-producing property with her two sisters.

You younger guys, and my kids, are on your own. I KNOW my kids will make it, I'm not raising pansies. I've taught them to WORK for a living; as long as they stick to it, they'll survive. They know better than to depend on the stock market and their "representatives".
1 member likes this
#817145 Jul 23rd a 12:09 PM
by BSA_WM20
Originally Posted by rick e.
Vertical Integration is basically gone and is not a sound model for volume manufacturing. That was even dying out in the US decades ago.

I would argue that 100%.

It was dieing out in the USA because "Theoritical economists believed that if you became big enough you could control an entire industry sector.
The catch cry was "Own the market & Set the Prices"
Which like most economic theories was wrong because it is based an a pile of assumptions that were not totally true nor achievable.

BSA would have gone under in 1969 had it not been for vertical integration , in fact they would have gone under in the 20's
I started my professional life with Sims Metal, then the largest scrap & reprocessing business on the planet .
And that was because of vertical integration .

Albert G Simms , started the company pushing a scrap barrow bare foot through industrial areas , buying scrap from one factory & selling it to another.
By the time he retired Sims Metal had over 3,000 patients employed 45,000 peope all over the world owned a fleet of 6 ships and leased a further 8.

Owning the entire process , including all of the land that the plants stood on meant that in tough times he could out bid everyone for top class scrap because he did not have monumential leasing and rental outgoings . And when prices were low he could still undercut all competition because the shipping fess were only the actual cost of running the ships offset by the profits from the backloads. And no doubt there was a lot of left pocket to right pocket happening to avoid tax but that was way above my pay grade.

Horizontal intergration was the product of big balled idiots who could not imagine that at any point in time the demand for their products would slump.

Point in case, Briggs, used to be the worlds biggest engine makers now bankrupt because Toro, & MTD bought cheaper engines from Loncin and 3/5 ths of their sales vanished in a single season . I bought a pallet of these engines at less than cost price.
The only reason that they did not go to the wall in 2017 was because of the vertical integration so the brands of mowers they owned fitted Briggs engines.
Briggs are blaming the Covid but that is total bull dust they had to restructure twice & refinance 3 times before Covid hit and they were reporting bigger losses evey year.

Right now a lot of Chinese food processors are very busy vertically integrating buying up farms in Australia, Africia & South Amercia.
Obviously because they have no Harvard or Princeton graduates on their board so they can see the real market as it exists and make plans for 20 year time.

Unless you have a high degree of vertical intergration then you are at the mercy of your supply chain.
Point in hand, VW was set to be the major maker of electric vehicles by 2022 but the new factory was not built and the entire project put on the back burned because they could not get a reliable source of cobalt for the projected life of the production , so Tesla is about to blitz the market during the early very high profit phase of electric vehicles and most of the others will not be able to enter till they are in the high volume low profit phase.
VW is being sued by one of the brand new foundries built to supply them with castings that has never poured a single mould and is currently up for sale.
1 member likes this
#817300 Jul 24th a 12:59 PM
by ricochetrider
Originally Posted by Hillbilly bike
Growing up in 1950's America? My mom was at home cooking meals with a cigarette dangling from her lips, glass of ice and vodka close by .Dad ,who owned a small business ,was working ,chasing women or playing golf. My grand parents were from eastern and southern Europe and seemed very odd to me...They were both self employed in suspect business...We were comfortable but not rich. I was treated ok but left to my own and got in trouble and fights . I was actually banned from from seeing some other kids. With a few other weirdo kids, we built rockets from home made gun powder, set model airplanes on fire and blew up stuff. 10 years old when Sputnik was launched, we wondered if we could launch a satellite and starting building one...
. We made a working small scale furnace to melt down aluminum junk...Rode our stripped down Schwinn and Road Master bicycles to abandoned factories and other creepy places. Sewed up life size stuffed dummies ,threw them off bridges.None of our group were good in school or had any sort of proper work ethics...We did however share a big paper route and managed it well enough to have a few bucks . Then came girls, cars, the military draft and we all had to become adults. As far as I know, they are all dead but me...

Sounds like my kinda fun! I never "had to" become an adult. I did eventually work my way around to it beginning roughly age 45 or thereabouts- and it was a long process, one that had really great results! I buried large numbers of my peers along the way tho. Nowadays, people I know tend to die of far more mundane causes. Oddly, tho- the numbers of dying friends has slowed WAY down as we've settled down!

Banned from seeing some kids... funny, my mom, ever climbing (or aspiring to climb) the social ladder, always wanted me to hang out with kids from the more upscale neighborhoods. Little did she know, those kids could afford better drugs- AND they had cars! When we did live on base, we were over in the "'elite" section, my dad being an officer. Man what a crew we were. And boy what fun we had.

It didn't take too long before much of what I was doing was widely known around the house. My Dad's policy was "don't bring that stuff into my house". He'd periodically search my room and I mean dump everything into a heap on the floor as he went thru drawers and stuff- then make me pick it all up. My mom constantly tried to get me to stop getting high, and one day I said, "OK I'll make you a deal. I'll stop, IF you stop drinking and smoking cigarettes." Her response, "NO! I'm not going to do it," I said, "OK then, shut the F up and get off my back."

I really wasn't a super nice kid to my parents, then again, that was a 2 way street as my dad was pretty rough physically and psychologically. BUT they beat manners and stuff into me. I could sweet talk anyone and politely lied my way out of much trouble at school.

Took my share of beatings in school too tho. At the end of 11th grade, the principal came to the door of the class I was in. There were about 2 hours left til summer. He was grinning (he was a mean a$s [email protected]@rd and hated my guts), as he said, "you have 14 hours of detention that you owe us, and won't leave this building til you serve em." I was like F me! His grin grew as he said, "well there IS another way out of this for you." I was like yeah?. His answer: 14 swats with his cricket paddle, bored full of holes.

I said, "let's go." That first hit lifted me off the floor- and I'm not exaggerating. He pretty effectively channeled all his hatred and meanness into each swat and that first one was the money shot. But I never processed pain normally. I'd been hit by a truck at age 12, too. Nothing anyone could ever do to me could hurt me after that. My dad had been beating me all my life too so I was well conditioned to this level of abuse. At 16 years old I was absolutely impervious. I took all 14 swats and didn't even blink. I straightened up, put my stuff back into my pockets, gave him the very best and most heartfelt F YOU look I could muster, walked out the door and didn't look back.

14 hours turned into 5 minutes. I had one of the best summers of my life.
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#817198 Jul 23rd a 07:15 PM
by ricochetrider
Originally Posted by Lannis
Originally Posted by GrandPaul
As long as our government is spending other people's money paying subsidies, they'll be making a "profit"...

And "Unemployment" is like any other commodity; the more you pay for it, the more of it you get. Why should anyone even look for a job when they can get paid the equivalent of $28,000 a year for sitting on their arse?

You might be surprised how many people do NOT think like you do about getting "free" money, Lannis.

One of the general benefits of unemployment compensation is that in crisis times, similar to what we are experiencing now, unemployment insurance payments to out of work people do equally as much, if not more- to bolster the nation's economy, as to boost any individual's personal economy. back to Econ 101: "when the vast bulk of a given population has disposable income, that nation's economy is and will remain strong, because those folks are out spending their money, buying homes, cars, etc etc"


I'll post a link to an ...anging-during-the-coronavirus-pandemic/]

Here's a quote from THIS ARTICLE

"Since COVID-19 hit in March, millions of workers have been furloughed or laid off. Congress has responded by adding the extra unemployment money to every state unemployment check in the country. Economist Michael Strain at the American Enterprise Institute said that is “providing a lot of income security to workers, and it supported overall consumer spending.”
Those payments have replaced 10% to 15% of Americans’ pre-pandemic income. If the money’s cut off at the end of July, Michele Evermore at the National Employment Law Project said nearly 30 million unemployed Americans will be thrown back onto state benefits alone.

“I think people will be very shocked, the day that the $600 stops,” Evermore said. “Workers can earn as little as, like, [in] Arizona, the maximum benefit is only $240 a week.”
She thinks Congress should renew the program at $600 a week until unemployment falls below double digits again.
But Strain argues that the current benefit level is so high it discourages people from seeking new employment.
“Ideally, you would extend supplemental unemployment benefits, but you’d put them on a glide path — start at $300 in high-unemployment-rate states and kind of phase it out from there,” Strain said.
[i]What should not be an option, according to Mark Hamrick at, is for federal pandemic unemployment checks to stop flowing on a dime in the last week of July.
He said that would raise the risk “that this economic damage does persist because coming into this crisis, most Americans were living paycheck to paycheck, and then, all of a sudden, for many the paychecks ended.”

And they won’t start up again until the unemployment rate falls and there are jobs to go back to."

I've been talking to a LOT of people during the past several months about all this- people nationwide, and folks from all over Pennsylvania. People just want their lives back, people just want go back to work.

Here's another great article from the Economic Policy Institute on this 600.00 a week.

[img][/img], and what it's currently doing FOR the national economy.

That thing I mentioned a while ago, compassion? However difficult it might be, now's a pretty good time to try and have some for folks. I'd ask everyone to put aside their personal bias & political views on unemployment- and understand that millions and millions of people are out of work- ONLY because of the Covid 19 virus pandemic. Nobody asked for this, nobody can help it. Some folks, such as myself, as a journeyman/master carpenter, MIGHT have a fall-back option. Most or certainly many do not.

With a large percentage of the everyday population a mere hair's breadth away from homelessness, combined with millions upon millions laid off thru no fault of their own- a little compassion right now goes a mighty long way.
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#817306 Jul 24th a 03:27 PM
by Hillbilly bike
Hillbilly bike
Yeah, we would have fit right
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#817324 Jul 24th a 07:04 PM
by Lannis
Originally Posted by DavidP
Can we please dispense with the myth of equal opportunity? That's another of those 'quaint' concepts which has been engineered out of our economy.

David, it hasn't. ANY kid in our poor little rural county, or anywhere in the country, who:

1) Behaves himself in school and learns even what little a modern public school has to teach, and at least proves himself to be "teachable" regardless of how "scholastic" they are and

2) Learns some sort of work ethic, working around the house or apartment building, running a paper route, running deliveries for a store, parking cars, cutting lawns, and realize from their parents that that's how you make it and

3) Keeps their tool in their britches, or their legs together, and not leave high school with a baby or a baby-momma .....

4) Doesn't turn themselves into the mental equivalent of a retarded chimpanzee with liquor, dope, and/or opiates ...

... and applies to either a trade school, a community college, or a state university with an eye toward getting a useful job, and obtains such a skill ....

... can make it, and WILL make it. There are hundreds of thousands, millions of unfilled opportunities for such folks, and that's the basis and justification for the unlimited immigration that we have today. Matter of fact, if the young person is black or Hispanic and do all that, companies and governments will be competing hard for his/her services, and will hire them WAY before they would hire my son or granddaughter. Sort of a pisser but that's a whole nother issue.

I've never ever seen a counterexample. The only way you will NOT make it is if you violate 1, 2, 3 or 4 above. And that's not an economic or societal issue, it's a personal responsibility issue.

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#817149 Jul 23rd a 12:37 PM
by Lannis
Originally Posted by GrandPaul
Originally Posted by Geoff
Loading up young people with back breaking debt so they can work at Walmart or a Starbucks is criminal

NOBODY (except their parents, in some cases) are FORCING people to get into student debt. 9/10th of jobs out there require NO degree.

What is "criminal" is what most colleges charge for useless degrees.

Well, THAT'S not even criminal; it's the market operating. When I went to school, we ate at a standard cafeteria line, lived in very simple dorms with the bathroom downstairs, and the college admin staff was in one building.

Today, students wouldn't think of going to a school that didn't have 5 luxury food service centers with cooks making omelets and carving prime rib, and rooms with en-suite baths, and an entire building full of Diversity Assurance and Administration drones. Costs COULD be 1/5 what they are, but students wouldn't accept it.

As you say, no one is forcing them to go, unless a parent saying "Either go to Harvard or get off my couch" is "forcing" someone to do something ....

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#817376 Jul 25th a 12:57 AM
by linker48x
I find this entire thread to be fascinating. We have many interesting theories and philosophies to explain things other than British motorcycles, and we have many resentments of the way things are, and some folks to blame for that.

So here is my theory of what is, and why it is that way.

My take on the original question, why has American industrial production gone offshore, much of it to China, is pretty simple. It's us. As Pogo says, "We have met the enemy and it is us." We did this, you and me. Basically for two reasons: for lower priced goods, and for more pleasant working conditions.

As to prices: Go to any Walmart, which sells massive quantities of goods manufactured in China and in the Third World. Stop anyone in any aisle, and ask them if they would be willing to pay 40% or 50% more for the same t shirt or television, pair of jeans or electric can opener, simply because it is made in the US. Of course, the answer will be "no"--the success of Walmart is mute testimony to that. We, the people who consume all these cheap Third World goods, have turned our backs on more expensive goods manufactured by American industry in order to get cheaper goods made elsewhere--to pay less for the same stuff. That's capitalism. Capitalism is a free will system, and it is very efficient--it seeks out and rewards those who sell what the people want, and that has happened. We, the American people want cheap t shirts and televisions, and that is what they have gotten. And our industries have gone offshore to make them cheaper for us. We do not choose to preserve American industry over simply buying stuff cheaper. Anything that would seriously interrupt that process would require the use of government authority to interfere in the free markets, with the effect of raising prices of consumer goods, and that would be resisted strongly--on political and philosophical grounds, and on the basis of simple economic self interest--who wants to pay more for stuff? That's just how it is.

As to pleasant working conditions, well, back in the 40's and 50's and even in the 60's and 70's, we had big steel plants, big factories, places where folks worked a long hard week making stuff, for limited pay, in dirty, dangerous, physically unpleasant conditions. We older guys know all about that kind of life, and we, or our families, may have had it ourselves. But people gradually were exposed to the burgeoning service economy, to sitting at a desk in an office instead of working in a factory, and getting a better paycheck for it, and liked that a lot better. And that is what they have chosen, white collar over blue collar, service sector jobs over manufacturing jobs. Again, just like choosing cheap foreign goods over expensive domestic goods, this is a process propelled by free will, by people's choices about their lives and how they would like to spend them.

If you look hard enough, you can still find some American-manufactured goods, and if you want, you can still work at a hard physical labor, but there are lots of choices, and as they say, people vote with their feet--they go where they want, and most don't make those choices if they can choose something else instead.

Everything is complicated and has a lot of complexity, but at the bottom, the changes in American society are changes we all have chosen for ourselves, and no one chose them for us and pushed them on us. Again, we have met the enemy, and it is us, us and our preferences for cheaper goods and easier and more pleasant jobs.

Is that a good thing? Will it serve us in the long run? Well, that is a different question than, how we got here.
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#817391 Jul 25th a 05:39 AM
by BevanC
What a really interesting and thoughtful posting from linker48x. I think you are spot on. While the issues you describe are not unique to the U.S., your country certainly seems to have been hit very hard.

It is the inevitable consequence of unfettered capitalism. In my view, the reason the U S. has been hit harder than other "western" countries such as mine is because there is such an antipathy towards any sort of Governmental regulation. Without constraint, capitalism will always lead to the creation of a small group of uber wealthy elite at the expense of everyone else. In that respect it is no better than communism.
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#817421 Jul 25th a 02:26 PM
by MikeG
[quote=BevanC]What a really interesting and thoughtful posting from linker48x. I think you are spot on. While the issues you describe are not unique to the U.S., your country certainly seems to have been hit very hard.

It is the inevitable consequence of unfettered capitalism.

I think it's more a consequence of unfettered consumerism driven by a populace that had been brainwashed into believing that that the only way to go. Everything NEWER BETTER BIGGER! Capitalism is just the method we used to fulfill those desires.
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#817420 Jul 25th a 02:04 PM
by BSA_WM20
First we have to remember that whatever commerse sysem we are talking about it was made by the rich & powerful for the benefit of the rich & powerful.
And definitely not for the benefit of the factory fodder.

The problem with Capitalism and in particular USA capitalism is it is formulated on a bunch of assumptions, none of which are actually correct.
And because of that it needs to be regulated strongly.
THe USA pioneered this with their Anti-Trust laws which were quite effective in preventing any one player becoming big enough to dominate the market.
Then they went on an anti communism ideology campaign and capitalism did what every other consumer system has done since the beginning of time, ran rampant.
Walmart is now so big it can demand that a company supply goods at less than the cost price or they will not stock the goods which in effect will bankrupt the supplier.
This happened with Noma and again with Murray two quite sound companies forced out of business because Walmart controlls way too much of the retail market and the retail market is no longer the level playing field competing for custome that the Capitalism Market theory is based on. Briggs & Stratton filing for a chaper 11 is ls also largely due to Walmart .
It is happening in the banking industry and in particular in the finance industry where individual investors joined forces to become gargantuan capital funds that force boards to pay out bigger dividends of they will either sell the company into oblivion or vote out the entire board through their massive amounts of proxies.
These are exactly the reasons why the Anti-Trust legislation was introduced in the first place.

The UK invented the consolidated capital system with organizations like the British East India Company that devistated India , China and a reasonable amount of South Asia . However the USA has taken it one step futher so they not only content to rape & pillage the third world coutries but because there is not enough profits there to satisfy their greed they are raping & pillaging their home country as well.
Remember consolidated capital has no morals , has no loyalties & exists purely & simply to extract the absolute maximum return on their money regardless of the cost, to every one on the planet.

Because the USA has voluntary voting at all levels of government , all levels of government are beholden to these organizations for funding so will do nothing to curb their power .

Then you have advertising and editorials that vilify any one who does not get the cheapest possible deal so being too cheap for the benefit of the country has been elevated to a religion in the USA . And the same media turn corperate criminals who buy out perfectly sound businesses because the real estate value has become greater than the share value into super heros , with never a mention that these thieves have tossed thousands of people onto the financial scrap heap .

Ultimately the selfish greed that has been brainwashed into the American mind set will destroy the country or you end up with another revolution that will make the civil war look like a gentlemans pic nic.

And no I am not anti-American and not a communist either I do believe in the free market system but it has to be regulated of the alcoholics will empty the liquor cabinet , And Australia is not too far behind the USA in the selfish greed stakes.

FWIW I am also on a dozen or so trade / industry forums ( small engines ) and I am always astonished by the number of people who buy a mower from Walmart / Lowes etc then bitch because the brand dealer does not snap to attention & give their warranty claims a top priority, usually for a fault that has originated from lack of pre-delivery servicing because the big box discount storeshave no techs.
The other thing that is amazing is how many think the difference between big box store price & dealer price is all rip off profits going into the dealers pockets.
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#817586 Jul 27th a 03:29 AM
by DavidP
Originally Posted by GrandPaul
Working in the field you are interested in pursuing with a future degree, is the best path to follow.
Problem is, many (most?) people today have NO interest in starting at the bottom of the totem pole, as they must NEED to, in order to learn the trade.

Further, many (most?) people today have no interest in WORKING while attending college, when they can do as they please on their student loan money. The day of reckoning is not in their universe of consideration.
I never had any problem with starting at the bottom, but I do INSIST on being paid. Ever since the mid 80's industry has been allowed to use unpaid interns to fill entry level positions. To be completely legal the intern must receive course credit, doesn't mean they start to pay you once you graduate. Another stipulation is that an intern cannot be used to replace a paid employee. Just means that no paid position will ever be created.
And, in the temp-to-hire job market of the early 2000s, you're always at the bottom at every new job.
Don't get me started on the independent contractor gig economy. No security, no health insurance, no workman's comp. In the last 20 years I've filed far more 1099s than W2s with my taxes.
I worked through college, I was spending my own money after all. For some reason nobody asks how you paid for college in a job interview anymore. Maybe they just assume that you borrowed the money. Maybe they prefer that you did, people with debts to pay will take more abuse before quitting.
Welcome to the latest version of the Company Store.
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#817680 Jul 27th a 09:36 PM
by Hillbilly bike
Hillbilly bike
An academic higher education is no guarantee of informed citizens..An open mind is the key ...I believe that's taught at home while growing up....many think they have an open mind until presented with something they don't agree with...
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#817792 Jul 28th a 04:46 PM
by Irish Swede
Irish Swede
When I see Keven "blame it all on the Republicans," while Portland, Seattle and other Democrat-run cities are being destroyed by leftist mobs, the word "projection" comes to mind.

In other words, blame the Republicans for what the Democrats have done, or at least have allowed to happen, and are still ALLOWING to continue.
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#817881 Jul 29th a 06:24 AM
by Dibnah
What's wrong with being sceptical about an "expert's" view? Or must we all touch our forelocks and obey?

In the UK in my lifetime, jobs that used to be available to 15 year old school leavers now require a degree.
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#817909 Jul 29th a 01:08 PM
by MikeG
Originally Posted by BSA_WM20
[quoteBut every time anyone opens their wallet it has reprocussions weather we think it will or not.
And getting back to motorcycles .
If British motorcyclist were as willing to open their wallets 1/2 as wide as HD owners do then we would still have a British bike shop at least on every 2nd street corner.

HD now makes more money selling T shits and doo rags than they do selling bikes. It wouldn't surprise me if Bloor's Triumph is not too far behind them either.
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#817935 Jul 29th a 04:25 PM
by Geoff
Why are the "protesters" attempting to break into the federal courthouse? Why are they lobbing fireworks, cutting fences, and shining lasers into the eyes of the LEO's?

If they were peaceful, they would chant their sayings, etc... and then go back home or where ever. While you believe locally the optics aren't that bad - its just some harmless kids out for a good time creating mischief, there is a large portion of people who believe these "protests" where things are destroyed and people are beaten are out f hand.

What is different between demanding the Feds surrender a courthouse to the mob in Portland and the demands that the Feds surrender a fort in Charleston harbor? Do you not see the irony in any of this?
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#817963 Jul 29th a 06:23 PM
by BeezaBryan
1 member likes this
#818080 Jul 30th a 08:35 PM
by Lannis

Exactly! Avoid peeing on people, and don't let someone piss down your leg and tell you it's raining .... A good rule for any time.

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#818121 Jul 31st a 12:27 AM
by NickL
America is certainly not alone in this, growing up in the UK i saw less and less stuff
completely made there, more and more assembled from imported gear. As a country
that relied upon manufacturing, as it had little natural resource it, it was bad news.
I often questioned the logic behind this train of thought but was always told it's about
I must admit though, having spent 80% of my working life working for 'foreign' companies
i am no shining light really. Japan was an excellent example of how you do it, lend money
to home industry at little or no interest allowing them to sell and operate overseas at a
virtual loss to establish markets. Don't make money overseas as you pay tax on it, just
keep the home factories at maximum capacity. Don't re-invent the wheel just keep making
it a little better each time. No quantum leaps, they are dangerous. It's an interesting mind set.
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#818115 Jul 30th a 11:18 PM
by henryanthony
I have a pair of jeans made in America. They are very old but I will keep them as a curiosity. They no longer fit. I would have to gain a few pounds. Perhaps I could interest a museum in them.

I used to work for a health insurance company. Among other things, I produced printed directories of healthcare providers. These were often used at events where union workers were enticed to choose a health plan. The union workers demanded the directories were printed by union workers so I had them printed at a union shop even though I could print them in America at a non-union shop for 30% less cost.

One day, I was talking with a union sales rep and noticed a coffee mug in his cubicle that promoted and were purchased by one of the local unions he served. Turned it over and saw the “Made in China” imprint. The rep said the mugs made in America were too expensive and the union wouldn’t pay the added cost. And they couldn’t even find a union shop that produced mugs.
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#818185 Jul 31st a 02:22 PM
by Lannis
Originally Posted by John Healy

I liked this thread a lot more when it was about Made in America. 2c

We've changed a lot of things for the better around my house in the last 6 months or so, taking a step toward putting our money where our mouths are concerning "Made in America".

1) We buy everything that we can buy in our locally owned grocery stores and produce stands. No more Kroger or Food Lion with their constant political pandering and correctness. I KNOW the stuff at Davis Produce is Made in America! Besides, this time of year I can stuff myself every day and never go past my own garden. Blackberries, squash, zucchini, tomatoes, radishes, corn, cucumbers, strawberries, blueberries, okra, beans, and peas .... watermelon and cantaloupes coming ...

2) The things that we really want but can't buy in the locally-owned little stores (Nestle's Hazelnut Coffee Creamer, PG Tips tea, etc) we have found on-line sources that don't fling their politics in our face every time we log on. We completely dropped Amazon for that reason last month, after an average of 35 orders every six months for 5 years or so. We already never go in WalMart, Target, Harbor Freight, and similar places.

3) We never buy anything with a "Made in China" label on it any more. Everything that's "Made in China" is also made in Mexico, Nicaragua, Taiwan, Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia, or Korea, you just have to look for it harder. I know that some things "Made in XXX" have Chinese bits in them, nothing I can do about that, but no "Made in China" labels 'round here no more. Keeps us from buying cheap kids toys, too!

You can't fix it all, but Fay and I can evaluate our own lives and habits, and try to reduce our own hypocrisy level a bit. We do an awful lot of bitching and moaning about how bad it all is with our mouths full sometimes.

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#818195 Jul 31st a 04:01 PM
by ricochetrider
It takes effort, time, and costs more to avoid stuff made in China, and some things- like phones for example are almost ALL made in China. I think perhaps Samsung is actually a Korean product tho, and they're top seller w world wide. SO there's that. Onereally has tout some energy into reading the labels on the things one buys. It sows ya down a little, but hey.

BUT there ARE still plenty of things made in the USA. I have Carhartt work pants and 3 pairs of Frye boots that are USA made. I have a new pair of Danner work boots that are USA made. I've been in and out of the Deep South a couple times recently and there are denim factories still producing USA made denim fabric- some of my Lucky Brand jeans (a company based in Los Angeles), wherever they were actually made, are made of U.S. denim. I own a handful of Klein tools- USA made. 4 Estwing hammers- USA made. Shovels and yard work implements, by True Temper, I believe- USA made. 2 Schott leather jackets and a Schott pea coat- USA made.

It's getting harder and harder to find, but we love U.S. wild caught gulf shrimp- USA product. Mostly I get mine at a local seafood vendor, not so much at the grocery store any more. Wild caught Alaskan sockeye salmon- another great U.S. food source, available nationally.
Farmed seafood is horrible and soaked with god knows what chemicals, made by cheap & indentured, forced or slave labor, and I won't touch it, if I can help it. MOST seafood available in the freezer section of almost any chain grocery store is farmed.

Label reading. SUPER important. I want to know where all my stuff comes from and I particularly want to know where my food comes from.

IF you care enough to spend a few extra bucks, There's still a LOT of things being made right here. OK sometimes it cots more than just a few $, maybe it costs quite a lot- BUT that money spent goes to support U.S. jobs and when U.S. workers are getting solid, livable wages, they spend money in other areas -in turn doing their share to support the general economy.

Who can put a price on the value of that?



The story earlier of the dog peeing on the owner's leg reminds me that a group of friends I've worked with over the years have a saying- when they think somebody is Bee Essing them, the response is, "don't pee on my leg and tell me it's rairing" laugh
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#818270 Aug 1st a 04:52 AM
by DavidP
What gets me is the way American companies extort tax breaks and no-interest loans just to move to your town.
A few years ago Nissan received such considerations for moving its US headquarters to Franklin, south of Nashville. The only jobs they brought were filled by relocated Californians.
Dell Computers got the same sort of deal decades ago. They're still using mostly temp employees.
There was another deal up near Clarksville. The company was supposed to start up manufacture of semiconductors. The state paid for the factory and set up a training program at Austin Peay for future workers before the company pulled out.
The worst are the professional sports teams, extorting a new stadium from the city with the threat of moving. Sure, we get some jobs selling concessions and way over-priced beer, but the team owner keeps all the profits and the city pays interest on the bonds to pay for it.
They call that free enterprise, but it's only free for the owners.
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#818387 Aug 2nd a 06:59 AM
by DavidP
I had a similar experience on a smaller scale.
I had one temp QC position inspecting plastic door handles which were made for Volkswagen. They were dissatisfied with the flashing present along the edges. VW kept urging the supplier to upgrade their injection molding equipment. That might have cost $60K. Instead, the company had me there to inspect each piece and mark the bad ones. They had a crew of folks who sat there all day trimming the flash with razor knives to avoid upgrading their capital equipment.
I think they eventually lost the contract with VW.
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#818429 Aug 2nd a 03:26 PM
by kevin
Originally Posted by henryanthony
I have a pair of jeans made in America. They are very old but I will keep them as a curiosity. They no longer fit. I would have to gain a few pounds. Perhaps I could interest a museum in them.

I used to work for a health insurance company. Among other things, I produced printed directories of healthcare providers. These were often used at events where union workers were enticed to choose a health plan. The union workers demanded the directories were printed by union workers so I had them printed at a union shop even though I could print them in America at a non-union shop for 30% less cost.

One day, I was talking with a union sales rep and noticed a coffee mug in his cubicle that promoted and were purchased by one of the local unions he served. Turned it over and saw the “Made in China” imprint. The rep said the mugs made in America were too expensive and the union wouldn’t pay the added cost. And they couldn’t even find a union shop that produced mugs.

when my wife ran for congress in 2016 she got a bunch of "vote for me . . ." T shirts. when tbey arrived she discovered that they were all made in china. everything else she had specified US and union made, but her teenage helpers had messed up.

so we gave them all away quick and the next batch were all union made in america. she lost anyway.

but now zhe'z running again, zo if you want to vote for a rabidly liberal patriot in ohios 6th district, she's on the ticket. unlike her opponent, she will actually live in her district and meet with constituents if she wins.
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#818605 Aug 3rd a 08:52 PM
by rick e.
rick e.
Originally Posted by ricochetrider
Originally Posted by rick e.
Originally Posted by Irish Swede
Richardson Electronics in Geneva, Illinois, still makes tubes, and may be the last company in the USA to do so.

Not audio tubes....

I think the only audio V-Tube USA manufacturer is Western Electric making output tubes. Like $1500 for a pair. You can also buy a USA stereo (two mono blocks) for your workshop for $60,000 from them. Speakers not included...

PS audio is a good USA high end audio outfit also.

Lots of small audio USA outfits along with some good budget DIY PCB boards made in the USA.

When my 1940's 807 output tubed IPC theater tube amps wear out I might upgrade.....

My mono tube amps are made by QUICKSILVER AUDIO. You can get a brand new pair, direct from them, for WAY less than 60,000.00.
I'm using vintage PS Audio preamps in both my stereo rigs and also have 2 PS Audio dedicated phono pre amps, one of which I believe to be one of their very first production run phono pre amps.

I had my Quicksilver amps rebuilt a couple years ago by a local tube guru guy whose main job is driving Steve Howe, the guitar player from the band Yes around- as the gentleman does not fly. The tube guy works part time in a buddy's backline shop keeping all his old tube guitar and bass amps tuned up.

He put matched quads of output tubes in my amps- a definite upgrade and boy what a difference!
A matched tube upgrade from Quicksliver costs about 900.00, depending on which amp (or amps) you buy.

I've bought so much used vintage stereo gear over the years. Sold a couple things off but still have a pile in my closet. Stereo gear is like motorbikes or cars or boats. People want the latest & greatest so there's a whole world of used high end audio stuff floating around.

Out of all the bad @ss vintage stereo gear I've bought over the years, I don't have anywhere near 60K in it! laughing

My main speakers are modern all the way tho. Speaker technology barely changed at all for decades and decades. Finally it leapt and the new speakers are just amazing. My speakers were made by a good old English company who was responsible for the original studio monitors, out door loudspeakers etc. They became ubiquitous to the point where people just used the company name- Tannoy- instead of saying "loudspeaker" in reference to say, a loudspeaker on a train platform. The Tannoy Eyris 3s continue to amaze me. Every time I listen to them, I am just blown away. I guess there are some folks who think the tweeters are too bright or harsh. Since I'm deef as a stump they sound good to my old ears! I like to cup my ears with my hands, sit with my eyes closed, and listen. Maybe I'm easy to please but I am indeed well pleased.

My secondary speakers in my *other* rig in the basement "entertainment center" are from VANDERSTEEN AUDIO- another one of these places that will sell you a new pair of speakers for tens of thousands. My old MODEL 3 SPEAKERS feature a box with a rear-firing woofer, and a suspended array of assorted midrange and tweeters, all wrapped in a cloth "sock". About 4.5 feet tall, each weighs about 125 lbs. Not super heavy on bass response but nice and airy, really great, in general. Omni directional, placement is key with these to get the best out of them.

That "Western Electric" crowd is a deep pocket lot. I like the power meter on their amps that reads up to 600 watts! Even tho they are running a six pack? of 300b output tubes that is still way under 100 watts RMS onto in 4 ohm load I bet. The meter looks good and sells product I bet.

10 watts and an efficient speaker(s), that is where it is at in my book.

I really like UK speakers and have a pair of ProAC. Love to find some old Tannoy but would have to sell my Gold Star to buy them.

Lusted after Vandersteens years ago and hope to pick up some PS audio components some day.

I love my Klipsch LaScala speakers.

Some time back I started repairing old vintage audio systems and putting them on consignment at a local shop. Turntables/reel to reel, tube amps.... Converting old PA tube amps to guitar amps. After my real job ends I hope to do that more. Lots of cool stuff in the back shed to restore/refinish AR, vintage JBL, KLH, Altec, Eico, Scott, Dynaco, Fisher....lots of Ampex and Magnecord...Dual.

Speaking of "Made in England" the Garrard turntable is real hoot. Reminds me of working on my bike. I love all those fantastic precision little brass washers, springs and adjustments. Then along comes the AR turntable with like one moving part and sets the standard for less is more. Vintage AR stuff blows me away. I swear the engineer/designer of the old stuff did that flat black paint and exposed electrical tape over leads on purpose just to mess with the big boys.

The good thing is after years of really loud abuse to my ears I can still hear a 12k Hz tone and pretty solid at 10k ish to 50 Hz

Speaking of "Made in the USA" and quality audio, I picked up a pair of late 40's military amps (6V6) with transcription turntables. True work of art and quality. All capacitors were metal can oil filled and 2x overkill on the voltage rating, 1% resistors.... I changed ONE input resistor for a modern impedance and it checked out just fine. I'm talking 6 watts of pure joy that you could listen to all day long and that is my true test of any audio system, the fatigue factor. That lack of....good.

Ya, its all a niche market. But that is the future and that is all I'm interested in as I get older.
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#818641 Aug 4th a 12:45 AM
by Boomer
One of my lit barn signs.

[Linked Image from]

Bill B...
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