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Forum Post: OWS does have a plan for JOBS....read on

Posted 9 years ago on May 29, 2012, 4:51 p.m. EST by bringourjobsback (64)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

The plan is this. End the neoliberal policies based on greed to destroy the common (middle-class) worker.

These neoliberal policies include so called Free Trade which amounts to nothing more than a system of sending jobs to countries like China, India, Mexico, etc. and then subsequently importing consumer goods from those nations. Trade deficit and Job loss is the result. Massive job loss to the tune of an estimated 3 - 5 million jobs.
--And a trade imbalance of 30 - 50 Billion Dollars m o n t h l y !!! --

...That's $30-50 Billion Leaving the hands of the American Middle Class and going into the hands of Executives, and Power Players (Lobbyists, etc.) ...

So there is a plan to bring back our jobs. That would be to end these so called Free Trade policies and / or place tariffs on imported goods.

Until then, expect more of the same, more job loss and people that were in the American middle-class barely hanging on.

A business that pays for example 100 people an average of $10-$18 / h o u r will go to wage slaves that get paid .25 - .65 cents / hour every time if they have the ability to do so. That ultimately kills the consumer base.

Come on folks ...look at the practical, common sense of the matter and rally to the fight.



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[-] 1 points by TheTrollSlayer (347) from Kingsport, TN 9 years ago

YOU ARE 100% RIght. It's not only millions of jobs that left, number varies, but also those jobs that depended on those like say, trucking for instance.

[-] 1 points by agkaiser (2515) from Fredericksburg, TX 9 years ago

In the global economy, America no longer has enough factories that provide the kinds of things that fulfill the needs and wants of the greatest part of the population. We're dependent on China for our day to day consumer goods. They have the factories and when our debt kite falls they can use them to enrich their own people with real goods. For the most part, we no longer have a real economy. Our economic leaders continue to profit in the abstract markets of finance and trade, while we grow deeper in debt and poverty. And we're stuck there because of ideological prohibitions against throwing off our bonds by confiscating the property of the rich, on which our slavery to them is predicated.

Our government has tried only to stimulate consumption. That shorts the formula by half. The jobs that produce most consumer goods have been outsourced. The bobble head media and wholly owned politicians tell us patronizingly that those jobs won't be coming back. The one percent and the ten percent can't make a profit that way. They don't care what happens to ninety percent of us so long as they have theirs. They make sure the experts feel included. They don't think the Chinese Communists will confiscate factories and use them for enrichment of all Chinese because, ironically, they imagine their rich Chinese counterparts have the same kind of power and influence enjoyed by American elites.

But it's not about the Chinese. In America it's about us. We no longer have an economy that provides the goods we need to survive. Few of us can still support our lifestyles. Soon, we won't even be able to sustain our lives. We must begin to make the things we need to live. To hell with trade and exports that enrich the few at our expense. We can't trade when all that's made is money. The limit to our existence is circumscribed by the concentration of wealth with an elite ruling class and their ministers, the trade imbalance and debt saturation.

How Does That Work? https://www.createspace.com/3852916

[-] 1 points by freewriterguy (882) 9 years ago

if we dont get a small business man to lead the way, i dont think anything will work. let me give an example, I called my manufacturer of my product i have been selling and installing for the past 20 years and they said that im not in their system, (due to me buying thru a wholesaler for less) so they couldnt help me with tech support due to me not having an account number. I replied, well can I use my customer's account number to contact you then? They can buy direct from you due to them having stores in every state, and their business volume they can beat my price, so now my small business has lost the markup on my product i have been installing for years, because corporations like to get into bed with each other. the lady stood back in amuzement at my response, to use my customer's account number so that I could continue getting support on their product i had been selling as a veteran for the past 20 years.

Needless to say this is multi-faceted, as due to them forcing me to go thru a wholesaler, instead of dealing direct with us dealers, there is now a 3rd party involved with every transaction, so you can imagine how many more mistakes that adds to the total, as many of these wholesalers, dont install my product, and lack technical knowledge of what when I call in for support, so i have to call the manufacturer for questions, and then my wholesaler, for parts pricing. It gets better as when there is a problem, the manufacturer who guarantees their product for 5-7 years as stated on the brochure, now says that I must go thru my wholesaler for returns now. Got to love how corporatism is shutting down america!

[-] 1 points by JoeW (109) 9 years ago

Both of those solutions are not really solutions to the problem, but just fixes for the symptoms that the structure of our economic (founded on our monetary) systems causes. Such as the accumulation of wealth with banks and the top 1%. Extreme greed, and extreme scarcity (in the midst of plentiful food, resources, and work that needs to be done)

I don't even mean structure in the capitalist, communist, liberal, free trade, whatever you want to call it. Free trade is by the way a good thing, but only if money is democratic. Democratic money would make free trade empowering rather than empowering for some, and a really bad deal for the majority.

[-] 1 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

Joe, Can we stick to practical , readily understood possible solutions to our economic problems?

First, lets have a basic definition of what is "Economics". A good one that's been given is this: Economics is "WHO" gets "WHAT".

[-] 1 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

Joe, I see currency / fiat money as not the core problem.

No matter what type of currency system you want to set up, the currency will have to be given some kind of value.

The problem here that you and I agree on is the ever widening gap between the ultra rich and the rest of us.

The problem I see is quit simple and can be expressed or shown without needing a Masters Degree in fiscal/economic/monetary theory.

The problem is taking decent paying work away from one class of people and re-delegating those jobs to a class of peoplle working for about 1/30 th of the pay that the former class received.

Now where does the money go from the savings just created in the above paragraph ???? Well, some of the savings goes to the consumer of the product being made. But a substantial percentage of the savings ends up going to the owners / managers , etc.

This is nothing new on planet earth. It's an age old problem of the owner (wealthy) class making their wealth on the backs of the worker (slave / serf) class.

This is the base problem. This I S why factories have been closed here in the U.S. in the last several decades. Not for some "benevolence" on behalf of the ownership. And please know, not for tax savings. But rather to save B I G on labor cost.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 9 years ago

that and automation

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 9 years ago

It's a paradox, because only through automation can we gain efficiency (and use less energy to produce the goods we need), while at the same time automation tends to reduce employment. However, automation does generate some jobs, the people who build the robots, the industrial controls, the software and computer systems, machinery, etc. (generally, well educated engineers and scientists, but I can think of worse things than a society full of engineers and scientists).

[-] 1 points by JoeW (109) 9 years ago

All that of course is effort that has to take place outside of the monetary paradigm, against nature of the monetary paradigm we have set up. Providing all those jobs is impossible under the current monetary system, but a very easy effect to produce under local currencies.

Look into the Worgl in the case of Germany, Scrip stamp in the American Colonies, the WIR Bank of Switzerland. All of these provide(d) greater equality of trade relationships within communities. The foundation for more equal relationships on a greater scale. If we have to steal from our neighbor to pay back the bank, we make paupers out of each other under this monetary paradigm.

Universal usury is at the core of the issue here. If we cant get rid of that, then the wealth will simply end up in the hands of the >.5% all over again.

[-] 1 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago


Let me state that I believe the problem we're addressing here is the ruining of the middle / working class and thus the destruction of our economy.

We're in disagreement on the entire ""monetary paradigm"" idea. It's actually making me mad.

No matter how confused you may be and / or are trying to be ; with me you will get simple, understandable, t r u t h.

The simple truth that we are addressing is that the average Chinese factory worker has earned less than $3.00 / d a y ((( not per hour but per day ))).

As far as anyone wanting to attach monetary implications to the above paragraph, the $3.00 is a unit of measurement that measures money.

So if you want to measure the money in Italian Lira, the English Pound, or a Dollar , the amount can be measured.

One world government has been attempted but has never worked.

Stick to point. Loose the /College Freshman inflating his ego with meaningless words/ style of communication.
I would suggest to anyone to Instead use practicality combined with common sense Intelligent solutions.

The ""monetary paradigm"" or in plain English, currency, we have today is the same that we had in the 1950's thru the 1970's. We M A D E our own products and we were in a better spot economically than we are today. Unemployment is getting worse. Our jobs have been outsourced. Money has -over the last several years- been re-concentrated into the hands of the ultra wealthy to massive extremes while the middle and lower classes are suffering more and more. On that point I agree with you.

[-] 1 points by JoeW (109) 9 years ago

You do also understand that our success in that period of time was at the expense of the ecology and peoples of much of the rest of the world (I can think of the Vietnamese offhand, their precious rainforests, the ranforests of South America, many indigenous peoples disappeared in this time of great prosperity for the Western world.

I am probably a poor teacher of systems thinking, that is why you are getting angry, but possibly because my ideas are anathema to a lot that we have been taught (for example the problems we face today are interrelated, and related to very old ways of doings things as well). So let me try a different way, with a story. To explain why interest leaves us with a 1% and a 99%.


I also do not believe that laws are the solution to our problems, they can help, but they do not address central issues and behaviors (they just provide negative incentive, they don't remove the positive incentive, which is systemic). Monetary reform does address some central issues, and it can be accompanied very effectively by many of the ideas that people are proposing to try with the current system (bringing our jobs back is very much at home with the ideas of issuing local currencies to meet local labor with local resources (rather than outsourcing that labor or expertise).

[-] 1 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

you're right about the banking schemes. Fractional reserve banking/ lending practices. They have 10 units of money but are allowed to lend out 1000 at interest. we live enslaved to credit cards, mortgages, car payments, etc.

[-] 1 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

Joe, Will you provide me with a specific example of monetary reform? How should the currency be changed? Changed to what? A simple example please.

As far as usury / interest, yes, credit cards are one example of a financial evil that uses the tool of interest to a ridiculous / criminal level on the masses.

Back to The 99% / 1%

No matter what currency / unit of money you want to pay a worker in -- call it whatever --- lira, pound, dollar, yen. If Susan is paid in Nashville, TN $15 / hour and the management figures they can get the job done for 1/40TH of that in say Cambodia; .... THEY WILL !!! This is simple. This is why rules need to be in place. This is more at the heart of our disparity of wealth today

[-] 1 points by JoeW (109) 9 years ago

The WIR (in place in Switzerland from the reconstruction of Europe to today), the Conocer of Brazil, and the local currency of Curitiba, Brazil. The Japanese Furei Kippu (caring relationship tickets). There are also proposed systems that have not been implimented, such as the Terra global currency which encourages staying put and building your productive assets for multi-national companies. Not to mention the Commercial Credit System, which can be used by local businesses that frequently patronize one another.


A lot of solutions open up, when you use the right tool for the job. Legislation to prevent something from happen is never the right tool, not that it won't sometimes be necessary.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 9 years ago

take a modest share back and run it through the bottom again

[-] 2 points by JoeW (109) 9 years ago

Exactly, that doesn't happen when everyone has to pay all the profits back to the top in the form of interest. To be sure putting your money in a local credit union helps too, at least keep the usury local. But I don't think that switching to credit unions will get rid of big banks charging usury to corporations, which bring that burden down to the people.

[-] 1 points by JoeW (109) 9 years ago

What I am getting at is that money does not have to function like that, though it is perhaps good for some money to charge usury, other money should be available that does not. The charging of usury is good for encouraging competition where things have become stagnant. But these are times of great change, too great for one type of currency to handle, a currency that charges demurrage offers value especially in local forms because it encourages the storing of wealth in infrastructure and any productive assets, even ecological investments with the proper design.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 9 years ago

well said

[-] 1 points by JoeW (109) 9 years ago

What I am basically saying is that we can design money to achieve the goals that we want. We can use local currencies to keep most goods flowing to all local participants in an economy, and make that economy more participatory as well. We can use international currencies that are not based on a fiat design (instead the value would be backed by real goods) to facilitate world trade, and encourage real investment by the MNCs when they set up shop in a foreign country.

[-] 0 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

That's a little vague, imo. Can you define democratic money? What are MNCs?

[-] 1 points by JoeW (109) 9 years ago

Sorry, I am still getting practiced at teaching these ideas. They are Bernard Lietaer's ideas on money. He has several books, I have just finished New Money for a New World, and it is incredible the possibilities that exist if we use money differently.

For example in the middle ages a few hundred years prior to the black plague, when most of the great Cathedrals were raised and built (and stand to this day), these were not of papal origin, but rather local origin, localities funded these massive churches with local currencies that functioned under demurrage, by which I mean the money devalued over time. So it was not something people saved up (not a store of value like our money is) but a medium of pure exchange) taxes were paid happly, and public works and productivity investments blossomed. The average peasant of this time in Europe was about the same height as our well nourished today. This time was also marked by the birth of reading for pleasure, and the rise of courtly love novels, and a balancing of the existing patriarchy with more powerful women (men and women at this time in most places were equal, women could own property like any man). There was of course also currencies that were a store of value, and these were precious metals minted into coins by the treasuries of kings.

Gonna see if I can't find a few video talks by Professor Lietaer to link you to, he is I think sufficiently experienced with money to make these claims with better clarity than I.

Money Diversity - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T9EI2PrDpmw

Here is the book though, even the first chapter is a good and eye opening read. http://www.scribd.com/doc/93313960/Bernard-Lietaer-New-Money-For-A-New-World-full-pdf-ebook

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

I have, at this point read through most of Lietaers' book that you linked. I do think though, that there are some fallacies in some of his assertions. Perhaps you can explain. One is that when a bank, through fractional reserve lending, loans to an individual for a mortgage, They are loaning only the principal and not the interest, which is to imply that no "new money" has entered the economy. In fact, it seems to me, the bank has on one hand loaned nothing at all but a "promise to pay" but on the other hand, it does tend to function as money. The other, his "circles of rawhide" assumes no additional rawhide circles will be produced. That would, of course, be a deflationary situation. Too little money chasing too many goods. That can be addressed. I'm not really arguing in favor of the status quo, nor do I necessarily support money creation by private banks, but I did have these questions. I did also watch the video you linked, and unlike the audience, I did know the answers to the question he posed. I'm not saying the general idea of reforming the money system is not a good idea, but I still don't quite see it as a solution to the trade issue. Some of the issues Lietaer raised, seem to echo those raised in a book written in 1935 by Gertrude Coogan called The Money Creators". You might find it interesting. http://www.archive.org/stream/MoneyCreators/Coogan-MoneyCreators-WhoCreatesMoney-WhoShouldCreateIt1935_djvu.txt

[-] 1 points by JoeW (109) 9 years ago

But if the bank only needs to hold 10% of the money it lends out, it is lending out money that does not exist yet. Yeah, the 11th round is simplistic, but it does I think get across a good lesson that a lot of people do overlook.

I don't look at his ideas as in themselves solving our problems but maybe gutting away at the rust that is forming on the machine. Greasing the wheels to to speak support egalitarian and local ideals.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 9 years ago

Just punish corps that move jobs overseas. Tax penalties, and disallowing the right to do business in the greatest middle class market on the planet. Simple. And tax benefits if the bring jobs back.

[-] 2 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

yup, pretty good. I agree. Ultimately the punitive tax on corps that offshore Labor has the same effect as tariff's on the imported goods themselves.

However, 1 technicality. Under the existing Free Trade Agreements, we can't put punitive taxes on buz's that outsource, nor can the gov't put tariffs on imported goods.

Therefore, it's a big battle. The battle is to get people to recognize what free trade really is. Namely an excuse to exploit the labor market in other countries, then in turn buy the products from those countries which dilutes the labor in the purchasing nation.

The ulitmate economic battle is the massively widened gap between the common workers and the Owner's, shareholders, executives, etc.

[-] 2 points by VQkag2 (16478) 9 years ago

The trade agreements and other laws do indeed allow for corps to exploit free labor as they have through all history (slaves, immigrants). And that must change. We can make foriegn car comp build cars here so we should be able to expand that logic to all manu goods. Hopefully

[-] 1 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

One important aspect of our current situation is the T R A D E deficit we are running on now. This is real. As in a real $30 - $50 billion / month L E A V I N G our country and going to other countries to be redistributed unequally.

[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 9 years ago

corps are trying to get status to sue countries

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 9 years ago

Maybe we could improve that number if we stop buying middle east oil.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

Oil is about half the trade deficit. Only a small portion comes from the middle east.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 9 years ago

So you want to continue sending our money to the middle east cause its only 20% of our oil imports? What about the wasted money spent to defend the middle east. You wanna continue that as well?

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

No, I don't want to see the US continue sending our money to the middle east or Canada or any where else. In fact, I don't want to see the US or the world try to continue a fossil fuel based economy at all. The only caveat to that is, we can't exactly just stop importing oil without creating an even worse economic crash than we already have. Tariffs can be enacted by an act of congress. A totally new renewable energy infrastructure will be a massive undertaking that is unlikely to be accomplished in less than a decade or more. I am totally in agreement with you about the the waste of money (and the futility) of trying to defend the middle east. In fact, as one who accepts the concept of "peak oil", (not to mention the destruction of the planet) oil is a dead end anyway.

[-] 2 points by DKAtoday (33802) from Coon Rapids, MN 9 years ago

An issue of outreach and education. Protest alerts the public of an issue. Eduction is outreach to get involved. Direct action - access to direct democracy can be started in petitioning as well as boycotting. Outsourcing must end as it is destructive to the overall economy/society.

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 9 years ago
[-] 1 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

Yup, that's one step away from what the common workers are in China and India...wage slaves

so come on folks -- Jump down turn around pick a bale of cottonnnn !!

[-] 1 points by TheMisfit (48) 9 years ago

OWS jobs plan:

  1. Steal the underpants

  2. ?

  3. Everyone works for a "living wage"

It's flawless.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

Your step 1 is wrong. http://pastebin.com/SrWHNFxS

[-] 0 points by CommonSense2345 (-5) 9 years ago

The one and only reason business is outsourcing is because it costs less than $5 to make a T-shirt in China and $60 in America. Anyone with common sense and wanting to prevent their from going bankrupt would outsource. If we didn't have the world's highest corporate income tax we might not be in the mess we are in. The U.S. tax code is four times longer than the combined works of Shakespeare. Also, there is no middle class under socialism and communism. And I would know because my parents grew up in the U.S.S.R.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

Whether or not outsourcing is a good idea for the national economy doesn't have a damn thing do with socialism/ communism. Protectionism has been employed by good old capitalism for most of the history of the US.

[-] 0 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

"The final alternative to working less is for communities to become more isolated and less open to world trade. Instead of buying the cheapest product that was manufactured overseas, people could be encouraged to buy from local producers either by choice or through raising trade barriers to make locally made products more competitive on price. Economists generally agree that this would lower the gross domestic product for a country and for the world, but on the other hand it would raise employment precisely because of the inefficiency that would result. The primary argument against doing this is that the same standard of living could be obtained by encouraging people to work less so that work, and jobs, are more evenly distributed in the population."

From http://jobcreationplan.blogspot.com/2012/05/work-conservation-is-solution-to-global.html

Since people don't really seem to respond to that argument I'll put it another way. If corporations outsource labor to overseas and it results in a reduction in price, that is good because it saves the middle class AND the 'working class' money. If corporations outsource labor, but keep the prices same (see: Apple) because stupid consumers prefer the "branded" product instead of a competitor's product that was also made overseas and is priced much cheaper as a result but doesn't have a brand... then it is the fault of stupid consumers that outsourcing is harmful to the middle class.

[-] 3 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

Ok, how do I show you how wrong and mis-leading you are.

One Issue at a time.

Point #1.
Your Myth :
Outsourcing will result in the lower prices of consumer goods; therefore saving the Middle / Working class Money and therefore helping our economy.

  Your Myth Debunked:

First, from the 1950's through the 1970's we were a manufacturing A N D exporting nation ( we did not have a trade deficit, we actually had a trade surplus). This means we manufactured our own goods and had an economy that was good and improving. Reason why? -- Because our people had good jobs and spent the money they made thus stimulating our consumer based economy !!!! Also, this country did just fine during that period and we made our goods here.

Second The savings are not that much. A majority of the money saved from giving away our jobs to wage-slaves goes into the hands of a few -- the owners, etc. The workers ((( who are also the consumers ))) are left with lower paying jobs and thus less spending money

Third When factories close here and people loose their jobs, they don't have A N Y money to buy anything while they are un-employed. A bargain is useless without income.
~~~Would I rather have a $15 - $20 / hour job and pay about 10% more for goods -- or -- would I rather have a $7 / hour job and pay 10% less ? Give me the former option and not the later. ~~~~~

Fourth We are running a trade deficit. In the amount of approximately $$$30 - 50 Billion P E R M O N T H !!! This is money leaving Our country and going to other countries and who knows who gets that money and what that countries real attitude is toward us.

[-] -1 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

It doesn't seem like you "debunked" the 'myth'. You admitted it does lead to lower prices (if people actually buy the lower-priced good instead of the $850 iPhone which was also made in China).

Objectively, it does lead to lower wages but that's because of the lower amount of work needed yet people are continuing to work full-time, leading to unemployment which puts downward pressure on the wages of everyone who is working.

This is the only reason the savings go toward profits instead of even lower prices for workers while we do high-paying jobs that can't be outsourced or done overseas.

Actually I can tell you where the money that leaves the U.S and goes to China goes -----it goes into building THEIR Infastructure -- AND -- their M I L I T A R Y.


[-] 2 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

Misaki - You've drunk too much saki.

For one, your weak attempt to show that China has some frilly childish soldiers is not even misleading , it's stupid. See the link below :


As for your lower prices of our goods: We made it just fine in the 1950's --1970's when we made our own goods. Beijing has had created more Billionaires in recent times and have done so on the backs of their factory wage slaves - and with them (Chinese corps)having a Trade surplus.

America has lost roughly $30-50 Billion P E R .. M O N T H TO C H I N A. Result should be obvious, screws the u.s. and benfits China.

Misaki, the rich get richer and the poor get more poor. Free trade is a prime conduit of that.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

China is developing one aircraft carrier, made from a ship sold to them by Russia. Compare to the US's 10 nuclear carrier-based fleets. No one thinks they could take on the US in a conventional war... and haven't you heard of nuclear weapons lol.

Japan is concerned because its citizens are concerned and politicians must attract votes. Remember when the Japanese navy arrested a Chinese fisherman? China did not attack Japan as a result because doing so would be stupid. The only reason that a US senator said the things he did is that his ideology benefits from the perception of external threats no matter how ridiculous the idea that another nation would go to war with the US.

America has lost roughly $30-50 Billion P E R .. M O N T H TO C H I N A. Result should be obvious, screws the u.s. and benfits China.

Just who do you think is buying all this stuff? When money goes to China, it is because goods are coming to the US.

Misaki, the rich get richer and the poor get more poor. Free trade is a prime conduit of that.

Only because people are stupid enough to buy brand goods and other things which are priced much higher than they cost to make competitively.

The rich would get poorer if we just raised taxes. But most people seem unwilling to do that or to adopt work conservation which would fix inequality and unemployment without higher taxes.

If you have not voted in support of work conservation I can only assume you don't care about inequality.

[-] 2 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

You still don't get it at all, do you Misaki? The lower prices do not balance the down side. The "lower amount of work needed" means less work done within the domestic economy. That means less actual wealth/ value created. That means less purchasing power. That means less aggregate demand. That means less jobs/ man hours/ dollars to be earned. Again, read up on Keynes. Understand "the multiplier effect". Learn the significance of "leakage" from the economy. Your'e making a fool of yourself.

[-] 2 points by JoeW (109) 9 years ago

GDP has some pretty big flaws that must be accounted for, which is essentially what you are pointing at with the idea that more work being done is good for everyone. Prisons are not organic farms.

That said local demurrage style currencies (which have very large multipliers, but devalue over time) could easily facilitate increased public works and greater investments in maintaining productivity (fixing stuff even before it breaks) to pick up the slack in less hours devoted to international economy, and put it towards works that would benefit the community as a whole.

Thinking outside of our dominant monetary paradigm is probably one of the ways that a glorious new future will come about, though the cultural, social, and artistic movements will be essential as well, among many other elements.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

Well, more work being done is part of the issue. The next question is how is the resulting wealth distributed. "Demurrage style"? Definition please. Thinking outside of our dominant monetary paradigm is one thing. Actually replacing it will be a challenge. There will be much resistance.

[-] 1 points by JoeW (109) 9 years ago

Demurrage is basically when the currency devalues over time, encouraging people to not use it as a store of value, but instead a medium for exchange.

People won't save money that will devalue over time (our current money can devalue, but its not supposed to and such is detrimental).

Resistance is an issue, but there is one pressure point where if we can hit it, resistance will melt away with time, and that is making taxes payable in alternative currencies.

A lecture by Bernard Lietaer on diverse money helps illuminate a lot of these points. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T9EI2PrDpmw

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

means less work done within the domestic economy. That means less actual wealth/ value created.

If I make an iPhone and sell it to you for $400, did I create the same amount of value as if I make an iPhone and sell it to you for $850? This is a serious question.

Work smarter, not harder!

You are also assuming that all work is necessary/essential. It's like you haven't heard of bureaucracy, or the financial sector, or lawyers (who often do things with no benefit to society).

Your'e making a fool of yourself.

You're making a fool of yourself.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

You seem obsessed with Iphones. The answer to your "serious question"; objectively-no, subjectively-yes. Of course, much, in fact most of what is produced in society is not essential to human survival. It is, however, barring a total restructuring of the global economy (which would have to occur simultaneously) essential to the persons who make their income from said products, with which they do buy those things that are essential, or that provide a reasonable amount of comfort. Your Iphone fixation has nothing to do with anything in this discussion.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

You should be able to understand, then, how someone can choose to purchase less of the 'non-essential' goods by working (and earning) less.

By your definition, they would suffer no objective loss of value although they might suffer "subjective" loss of value.

Back to your previous comment though,

That means less jobs/ man hours/ dollars to be earned.

Less hours/dollars (work available) does not mean fewer "jobs" if people work less; in fact it means more jobs if the way people spend their money creates less work here in the US than it took them to earn that money.

iPhones are just a good example of a 'brand' good. Say that it takes on average 40 hours to earn the $800 to buy an iPhone (based off market value, not the subsidized cost for buying into a cell phone contract). This is just an approximation for immediate effects, but if it takes less than 40 hours of labor in the US to design/manufacture/sell an iPhone in the US, someone is reducing the amount of work/jobs available by buying an iPhone instead of working less and letting someone else do that work and buy something with what you admit would be "objective" value instead of the "subjective" value of a brand.

Please understand that when people choose to work less, "lower aggregate demand" does not equate to "fewer people with jobs". The basic economic equations you learned no longer apply here.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

I've said this before but let me elaborate. Your thesis seems to be that you can influence the supply/ demand ratio of labor to demand for labor with this system. This could only work in a closed system. In a globalized economy, everyone in every nation would have to sign on simultaneously. In the real world, lower aggregate demand DOES.result in fewer jobs that pay a sufficient amount of money to live a semi- reasonable life. The objective/subjective issue is a semantic red herring. All valuation is really subjective. If you're starving, a crust of bread is of more value than a gold bar. Your Iphone example still has logic. What is at issue is where the extra $450 goes. In a perfect world (depending on your point of view) the $450 could go to higher wages for the worker who made it who then has more disposable income to spend on products that support someone else s job. Basic economics do indeed apply. If people just buy cheaper goods, it just means the economy shrinks. Less (perceived) money/value in circulation.

[-] 0 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

Workers in China cannot apply for retail positions in the US. We have $55 trillion of wealth, most of it (~80%) held by the top 10%; demand is not going away anytime soon even if we work less.

[-] 2 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

Retail positions are not sufficient. Wealth held by the top does not create anywhere near the demand that it would if distributed throughout the masses Manufacturing is a real wealth producer. Retailing only involves value changing hands. There is no actual value added. Demand is declining. That's why China is stagnating. If you are a wealthy person, how many Iphones (your favorite) or cheaper substitutes are you likely to buy? As an aside, I would contend that a lot of that "wealth" is illusionary. .

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

Manufacturing is a real wealth producer.

The materials to build a factory don't cost much more here in the US than in China, and if they do cost more it's only because the workers who make those materials (like concrete) get paid more. The only reason US manufacturing has declined is that with more competition it would pay less to workers than other jobs available in the US. We are mostly a service economy now, and retail jobs are just an example of a "service" job that can't be outsourced. We still do manufacture stuff anyway, it just doesn't need many people due to technological progress.

The idea of "sharing" jobs isn't complicated, and I liked how the responses to this thread showed that people don't have the delusion that working harder helps the unemployed. If you say the rich only need one iPhone, or only spend an average of half an hour each day in a store (leading to retail employment), then all this means is that we can eliminate even more jobs and spend less average time working without forcing people to work less through a legal reduction in the work week.

As an aside, I would contend that a lot of that "wealth" is illusionary.

Probably. But does it matter? No matter if a company's total stock value is 10 times its annual revenues or 40 times, it still lets you make a profit and extract "rent" from ownership of things like land and equipment. Rich people are not about to run out of money, and even if they do it would be because someone who isn't rich (i.e. the middle class or poor) has money which they can then spend.

The WORST that could happen is that due to working less while continuing to spend/consume, the US's currency weakens. But the US has been asking China for years to let its currency appreciate so this 'worst' would just mean more job creation.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

"We still do manufacture stuff anyway. It just doesn't take that many people..." You better send an email to China. They employed 99.01 million people in manufacturing in 2007-2008. I guess the don't know the don't need people. http://www.bls.gov/opub/mlr/2011/03/art4full.pdf You seem to have no connection to reality. Yes, if the yuan were revalued to about 20x its' current state, we would be "competitive". Don't hold your breath. http://jobs.stateuniversity.com/pages/16/American-Workplace-SHIFT-SERVICE-ECONOMY.html

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago


So what are the dozens of industries that you think have been unaffected by outsourcing? http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-11-16/citigroup-said-to-consider-3-000-job-cuts-as-pandit-trims-costs.html

It mentions job loss in the financial sector but doesn't attribute it outsourcing; most likely just slow business. Or possibly higher productivity.

(cutting 30k jobs to save $5 billion per year = $166k per job, including benefits etc...)

Of course, one of the expected results if we adopted the accelerated work week would be even more job losses in the financial sector; but net positive job gains for the economy if we define a job as "someone working exactly as much as they want to work".

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

Reply to
The President of the United States asked if Apple could move those jobs to the US. The reply was that it was extremely unlikely. (There was also some evasiveness by pointing to "a lack of qualified engineers"... in other words, Apple doesn't want to pay high wages to engineers either.)

While banking/ financial may be the highest paying, I contend that they produce no real wealth.

And? They still exist. The money they earn comes from somewhere, which is more likely the middle class than some rich people (since rich people are their clients after all)...

The shift from an economy producing real things to a casino economy is a big problem.

Well, just like everything else it would be fixed if we adopted the accelerated work week. The existence of inflation is a big driver of the use of the stock market and retirement fund investing, and inflation exists mostly to keep down unemployment.

Also due to high inequality itself; even if the middle class did not invest in the stock market at all, rich people would probably gamble away some of their money, meaning that smarter rich people and rich people who employed smarter financial industry employees would gain that money.

Although a lot of money has been accumulated by those at the very top of the financial industry, many jobs have been lost.

This mostly depends on where their money comes from. If it comes from the middle class ("people poorer than them"), then the financial sector leads to net job less. If it comes from stupid rich people ("people richer than them"), then the financial sector leads to net job gain because financial sector people need houses, food, clothes, etc. Unless you mean job loss WITHIN the financial sector?

So what are the dozens of industries that you think have been unaffected by outsourcing?

I find it easiest to refer to this: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/10/opinion/brooks-the-two-economies.html

The so-called "inefficient" half of the economy; when of course that inefficiency is precisely what allows it to employ more people.

The only way to reduce inefficiency without leading to job loss is for people to work less.

As I said, http://occupywallst.org/forum/all-your-problems-are-belong-to-work-conservation/

[-] 0 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

reply to "The POTUS....I'm very well acquainted with the Smoot-Hawley tariff act,as well as the nonsensical notion that it had any significant (or in fact any) negative effect on the US economy. Even this pro-free trade site points out that S/H had little effect. http://www.economist.com/node/12798595 The reduction in imports and exports was due to the fact that the entire world economy had frozen up. It had virtually nothing to do with tariffs of any kind. There were far fewer good being produced to be traded. As to what percentage of the economy is "non-tradable" I see that as a bit of a moot point, but that said, the things that brooks mentions, Health care, education and government, while arguably important, are not wealth producers. In fact, they are wealth consumers. Now, of course, one could argue that education is an exception, and in a sense, I agree, but not without a means to deploy that education within the economy in question. I, myself, am in what could be considered a "non-tradable" type of business. I produce horticultural products. The trouble is, that when my customers lose their jobs or their wages are beaten down by foreign competition, I loose sales. Government loses tax revenue,teachers can't be paid as much. All service industries will not have the customer base with sufficient expendable income. This is happening now. This is also what Keynes explains so clearly. This is a loss of "aggregate demand". Brooks says "companies that have to compete with everyone everywhere". That is not a given, but no surprise since Brooks speaks for the so called 1%. I have to insist that your "fix" can only work in a CLOSED SYSTEM. How did the 40 hr work week come into being? Under what degree of free trade? Before, people worked 12, 16 hrs a day.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

Health care, education and government, while arguably important, are not wealth producers.

Apple has over $100 billion in cash. Almost all of those profits are from items that were NOT produced in the US. But Apple still gets the profits.

Same with any other corporation in the same situation. If you want to talk about "wealth production", multinational corporations look closely at the "value chain" and where "value" is added from each step in the manufacturing process.

But despite foreign competition, the US still does have a manufacturing sector. It doesn't matter if most of the economy is does not manufacture "wealth", as long as people do work that other people are willing to pay money for.

I have to insist that your "fix" can only work in a CLOSED SYSTEM

Why do you insist this? The idea is simple. Continue selling to rich people outside of the local system; stop buying from rich people (aka brands) outside of the local system. The US, and any other country or region of any size that uses the accelerated work week, from the system not being closed.

Job creation without higher government spending, inflation, or trade barriers: http://jobcreationplan.blogspot.com/

[-] 0 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

The POTUS asked who if Apple could move those jobs back? Apple? The way to combat offshoring is not to ask permission from multi-national corporations. Corps. do what seems to be in their best economic interest. With tariffs in place, the most cost effective thing to do would be to manufacture domestically. Yes I do mean jobs within the financial sector. That's what the link was about. So for your next answer, you link me to David Brooks. Seriously? Right wing hack David Brooks? When I can stop laughing-I'll continue. .................OK,I'll try once more. No, reducing hours does not effect efficiency/ inefficiency one iota. I could go on to talk about Brooks insane rambling about "vast amounts of US energy that can be exported, but that's another discussion.

[-] 0 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

The POTUS asked who if Apple could move those jobs back? Apple?


With tariffs in place, the most cost effective thing to do would be to manufacture domestically.

I have explained why the accelerated work week is in all ways better than this. Also, see Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act which lead to a reduction of imports AND exports for the US during the Great Depression and didn't fix unemployment, maybe just reduced it very slightly.

No, reducing hours does not effect efficiency/ inefficiency one iota.

Simply reducing hours might not. But giving people an incentive to work faster worked for FedEx and would work for many other businesses as well.

David Brooks says that the lack of productivity increases in non-tradable sectors is bad, but I linked it only for an illustration of what those sectors are. He implies that it is roughly half the economy; do you disagree and say that the proportion is smaller?

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

When you say, "The "physical volume" of demand and production is what is important. NOT the dollar volume", that, from an economics standpoint, is nonsense.

If the average hamburger costs $1, and a rich person decides to buy a hamburger for $1 million, you really think it creates 1 million times the number of jobs?

incidentally, the 50% profit margin on Iphones, quoted in the article is dead wrong. There is a 30% margin, still very high, but it speaks to the credibility of the piece.

One source: http://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2011/12/24/china-makes-almost-nothing-out-of-apples-ipads-and-i/

Do you have any sources that state a 30% margin? Your lack of evidence speaks to your credibility.

A higher profiting company can POTENTIALLY pay a higher wage.

Can, but in practice there has been little connection between profits and wages. Or are you not aware that median wages have not grown in the past 30 years in the US while productivity has increased by about 80%?

Or the fact that corporate profits captured 93% of the rise in real GDP during the first year and a half of the recovery, and wages captured only about 1%? http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/06/30/the-wageless-profitable-recovery/

You are severely lacking in both evidence and logical consistency for your claims.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

Reply to; "manufacturing tends to..." Do I think we should move those $400/ month jobs to the US? Yes I do,but not at $400. The added cost of US wages would amount to about $60 more. Either Apple would have to trim their profits a little, or people would have to pay $60 more (or some compromise in between). While banking/ financial may be the highest paying, I contend that they produce no real wealth. The shift from an economy producing real things to a casino economy is a big problem. Although a lot of money has been accumulated by those at the very top of the financial industry, many jobs have been lost. A lot of those ivy league-rs may be disappointed. So what are the dozens of industries that you think have been unaffected by outsourcing? http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-11-16/citigroup-said-to-consider-3-000-job-cuts-as-pandit-trims-costs.html

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

You aren't addressing the point. 1$ hamburger...$1 million....Let's stick to a more realistic model. Manufacturing tends to have a higher profit margin than burger making/ selling whether it's Apple or automakers. I don't know how you could miss the fact that I used the word "potential" for a reason. I am well aware of the fact that the profits are NOT going to the workers. That's the problem. That is imo the reason the system is falling apart. A reasonable amount of the profit MUST be distributed to workers for the system to work. Corporations are actually "killing the goose that laid the golden egg" in the pursuit of short term gains. The only defense, historically, has been organized labor. I don't think we disagree on goals, or even so much on what some of the problems are. Just on what would be a workable solution. What I have been trying to get across is that without addressing the wage issue, you can't solve the problem. Your plan will not decrease the available worker pool when the pool includes billions of people outside our borders. That is what free trade does. http://www.businessinsider.com/apple-iphone-profit-2012-4 This article says 35% for Iphone, 30% for Apple across the board.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

Manufacturing tends to have a higher profit margin than burger making/ selling whether it's Apple or automakers.

Until recently the people making iPhones were paid 900 RMB per month (~$150) before overtime; now they make about 2200 RMB (~$400).

You think we should move those $400/month manufacturing jobs to the US?

Physicians are basically the highest-paying job right now, but that probably hasn't changed much from historical trends. http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_are_the_highest_paying_jobs

In fact, if you look at these charts, "Blue collar or miscellaneous service" went from 4.2% of the top 1% of income in 1979, to a low of 3.0% in 2001 during the .com bubble, and most recently in 2005 were back up to 3.8%. The increase in representation of the financial industry is, of course, the most significant change.

So in other words, as many Ivy League graduates are aware, the real money in the US economy is from finance.


From your article:

The iPhone, most analysts agree, is more profitable than some of Apple's other products. So perhaps the iPhone business has a profit margin of, say, 35%.

Pure speculation. The 55%+ figure is based off of teardown of the phone's components and, I believe, an analysis of corporate financial statements.

So: the billions of workers outside the US's borders have not reduced wages in the financial sector. They have also not reduced wages in dozens of other industries that lead to well-paying jobs in the US.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

US manufacturing productivity has only increased since the recession.

Without this productivity increase, we might not have net job loss in that sector by now.

[edit: in other words, it is cheaper to increase automation in factories than to add workers. Businesses are still motivated by profit even if their operations are in the US.]

Let me guess though, you're one of the people who think that if the US only had more rich people (or if our rich people had more money), we could create more jobs!

You are wrong. We can create more jobs without more government spending and even without more spending by the rich. http://jobcreationplan.blogspot.com/

The definitive proof, which I suppose people forget about since it's an economist thing and most economists who aren't working for conservative organizations agree that the rich have enough money and assume everyone else thinks the same, is that the Fed has injected trillions of dollars into the economy (the pockets of the rich, corporations and banks) through "Quantitative easing", but has not done it again because it was ineffective in creating growth.

[-] 2 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

rely to; However, even bottom up...No Misaki, you haven't read enough. You are still clueless as to what "leakage". in the Keynesian sense, is. Discouraging brand purchases will have no effect whatsoever on leakage. I actually did go to your link and I noticed in the feedback section, some of the same criticisms that I presented. I think it is you who don't understand how the economy works. I'm trying to be patient and have now spent considerable time responding to you because I assume your motivation is pure, but this theory is full of fallacies, When you say, "The "physical volume" of demand and production is what is important. NOT the dollar volume", that, from an economics standpoint, is nonsense. incidentally, the 50% profit margin on Iphones, quoted in the article is dead wrong. There is a 30% margin, still very high, but it speaks to the credibility of the piece. It isn't an issue of the profitability of a product or a company. It's a question of "who gets what". That's where organised labor becomes important. A higher profiting company can POTENTIALLY pay a higher wage. What you seem to be trying to do is place some absolute value on the "utility" of a product, but that tends to be very subjective, and while it may be wise to do, as individual consumers, it is of no benefit ti the overall economy. I don't get the feeling you have ever run a company, or produced a product. I have and I do. If my profitability is cut, it tends to reduce my employment budget. That's how it works in the real world. As for Keynes, he did recommend "full employment". Not "full time employment". Again, unless you where able to get all workers in the world to refuse to work a 40 hr week, simultaneously, you have no shot. Without that, all you could do would be to reduce the income of people who already make too little to live a decent life. Good luck with that.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

Let me start in the middle. No, I'm not one of those who think if the US had more rich people ... we could create more jobs. Are you kidding me. Have noticed my user name? Do I need to break it down for you? Not-a-neoliberal. Do you Know what neoliberal means? I have explained why stimulus hasn't worked so well, but let me further say, top down stimulus is not what is needed. However, even bottom up stimulus would fall flat because of "leakage". I can tell you never bothered to take my advice and read a little about Keynes. If you had you wouldn't have made the assumption that I would be in agreement with the economists that currently rule the roost, so to speak. They are NEOLIBERALS. You also need to check out "the Luddite Fallacy". Higher productivity does not need to mean fewer jobs.

[-] 1 points by Misaki (893) 9 years ago

However, even bottom up stimulus would fall flat because of "leakage".

The whole point of the accelerated work week is that by discouraging brand purchases, it prevents that leakage.

From http://jobcreationplan.blogspot.com/2012/05/alternative-to-socialism.html

"However, people might also assume that spending more money leads to greater employment, or that buying products specifically made in the United States instead of overseas is the best way to support the economy. There is a simple standard to establish whether this is true. Determine "percent of money I earn that comes from people richer than me", and compare it to "percent of money I spend that goes to people richer than me". If the first is higher, then you are helping to raise employment. If the second is higher, you are making unemployment and income inequality worse."

You can read the whole example if you want. But as I pointed out (I think), Keynes based his conclusions on the assumption that everyone will be trying to work full time. The "physical volume" of demand and production are what is important, NOT the dollar value. This is why, as I pointed, out, spending more does not always lead to more employment (due to the implicit assumption of also working more to be able to spend that money).

I can tell you never bothered to take my advice and read a little about Keynes.

I have read enough. You don't seem to how understand how the economy works though, or the simple concept that although someone richer may spend more money on food, the physical volume of food (and amount of work needed to produce/prepare it) barely changes at all.

You also need to check out "the Luddite Fallacy".

From Wikipedia:

All available Luddite literature, usually in the form of popular songs, protest songs, and broadsheets, shows that unemployment, poverty, and starvation were their major concerns. Thus, it is wrong to label them as anti-technology because they were anti-starvation.

Technological improvements that lead to more variety of products and consumption lead to employment increases. Technological improvements that lead to production efficiency increases have the possibility of leading to unemployment increases if many households already buy most available products. (Example, someone might not own a collection of trading cards but they prefer to spend additional money on "brands" instead of a greater volume of goods.)

[-] 1 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

Actually I can tell you where the money that leaves the U.S and goes to China goes -----it goes into building THEIR Infastructure -- AND -- their M I L I T A R Y.

[-] 0 points by francismjenkins (3713) 9 years ago

I would just say that we should not become a protectionist nation. However, we could probably benefit from a value added tax, permissible under WTO, and exempting sectors like "cottage industries" would likely also be permissible under WTO rules (e.g. small to medium sized manufacturers could qualify under this exemption).

[-] 2 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

Why would you oppose protectionism?

[-] 1 points by francismjenkins (3713) 9 years ago

Simply stated, more of a shit storm than it's worth. There's ways we could restore our manufacturing sector without such a provocative move.

[-] 2 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

And let me throw out some facts here bullet style:

** China = a Manufacturing and E x p o r t i n g country (i.e. they have a trade surplus) and their economy was in a state of true high growth over the last 10 + years

The U.S. has been more of an I m p o r t i n g country (has had a very high Trade Deficit ) and our economy is now crashed.

Again I ask what specifically do you mean by a "shit storm"?

[-] 2 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

What is the "shit storm" and how would this "shit storm" hurt us more than we've been hurt by a decimated middle-class through massive job loss and loss of manufacturing?

And, you say don't be protectionist. What's wrong with protecting what you have? Japan, China, and Germany sure do have protecting measures - i.e. "value added taxes" which basically is what a tariff is.

[-] 0 points by francismjenkins (3713) 9 years ago

Dude, I'm endorsing a value added tax, with exemptions for our small and mid sized manufacturers. All I'm saying is there's a right way to do it & a wrong way to do it. In my opinion, a value added tax is the right way to do it (because it's permissible under WTO rules & so it won't start a trade war, and trade wars often lead to real wars).

[-] -1 points by boxman (7) from Prospect, KY 9 years ago

You have no data to back your contention that the "decimated middle-class through massive job loss and loss of manufacturing" is related to outsourcing. There is endless data to show that technology has done vastly more to wipe away jobs than outsourcing to lower cost countries.

With a modern computer and a milling machine, one person can manufacture parts in hours that used to take several shifts for 5-6 people to make. Without even considering the (quantifiably minimal) impact of outsourcing, you have millions of jobs gone because of technology. Protectionism doesn't address the underlying issue and only inflicts pain on somebody else for absolutely no gain.

Besides for an organization that claims worldwide action, how do you get to decide that the people in China or wherever you think all the jobs have gone, shouldn't have those jobs? What did they do to deserve to have some oppressive trade policy come in and take away their jobs?

[-] 2 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

Response # 3

Your claim : I have no data to back my contention about job loss, closed factories, and thus a decimated middle-class

My answer Are you seriously kidding me ???

Roughly 43,000 factories have closed in the US since 1993 http://www.populist.com/11.20.kalet.html ""That we keep touting the benefits of trade pacts that have offered few benefits is mind boggling. As Roger Bybee wrote recently on the In These Times web site, NAFTA has led to the loss of 4.9 million jobs and the closing of 43,000 American factories. For free-traders, this is not necessarily a bad thing, because it leads to lower-cost goods and is supposed to be part of a larger shift to higher-paid service-oriented work.""

This should be obvious boxman since most consumer goods are Made in China.

[-] 2 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 9 years ago

unfortunately, survival without employment is difficult without money for food and rent

[-] 2 points by TheMisfit (48) 9 years ago

NAFTA is a great example of the disastrous "new trade theory" that won Paul Krugman (partisan hack) the Nobel Prize. It is nothing more than blindly helping third world nations at our own expense in order to feel good about helping others. Pathetic and extremely damaging.

[-] 1 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

Misfit, you're all over it man. I'm in agreement with you.

Trade theories have messed up the whole world's economy.

China is the Factory / Slave nation to the world. Thus (jumping several steps) the world's middle class of people to a high degree have been replaced by wage slaves and the end result is the economic mess we're in now.

China and India have close to 1/2 of the world's population and thus theoretically could take every job that pays decently and turn it into some $2.24 / hour job.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 9 years ago

You seem like the partisan hack! Free trade can be good if we have the right environmental, and workers right elements included.

[-] 1 points by TheMisfit (48) 9 years ago

Free trade with nations whose standards of living are below ours mean that we have to lower our standards to be competitive. Free trade has all but ended our textile sector, has damaged our small farms and has forced many corporations to send jobs off shore to be able to keep costs down to remain competitive. Are you really so ignorant that you don't see this?

[-] 3 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 9 years ago

Much like government lowering the standards of unions

non-union jobs will be more able to lower their standard

[-] -1 points by TheMisfit (48) 9 years ago

Nearly every worker in America is non-union. I don't see where your logic is coming from.

[-] 3 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 9 years ago

the government unions get perks and the private companies don't want to give perks

[-] 0 points by TheMisfit (48) 9 years ago

The government employees get better perks because the government does not need to generate a profit to keep money rolling in. If they want more, they simply take more or incur more debt and pass it off to the next guy. It is not because of their unions, it is because they have no bottom line.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 9 years ago

So your against public emloyees too? No surprise? For a republican Hack!

[-] 1 points by MattLHolck (16833) from San Diego, CA 9 years ago

it is the private companies that have no bottom line

the government is beholden to the people

[-] -1 points by TheMisfit (48) 9 years ago

You can't be serious.

[-] 1 points by VQkag2 (16478) 9 years ago

our textile industry ended long before nafta. It was greedy 1% corps who chose profit over people! We should simply penalize any corp that moves jobs overseas. Simple.

[-] -1 points by TheMisfit (48) 9 years ago

OMG you are such an idiot. Stop responding with your nonsense. You obviously have not studied the issue and are still spouting off talking points. Do everyone a favor and research something before you reply. We have lost over 1 million textile jobs since NAFTA was signed and now there are around only half a million textile jobs left. NAFTA eliminated most of the tariffs that made it profitable to run textile mills in the US and create clothes here. Without those tariffs, your precious free trade all but guaranteed that those jobs would be lost or else those firms would go under due to loss of sales. Get with it already and stop being such a lefty tool.

[-] 0 points by VQkag2 (16478) 9 years ago

Millions more textile jobs were lost long before Nafta. Your the idiot if you think the damage began with Nafta. greedy corps. Punish them and they will get in line.

[-] 1 points by boxman (7) from Prospect, KY 9 years ago

You are obviously committed to your position, but the data works against you. I'm not sure if you are open to changing your ideas or not - but I'll give you a starting point. Search the United Nations Statistics Division Database http://data.un.org/Search.aspx?q=manufacturing for information on the dollar amount of value added manufacturing performed by each country (specifcally china and the US). What you will find is that America still lead in this category through the years tallied in the database (2008 latest number). In fact we have experienced strong growth in this area - through the last several years. see some of the data in this presentation unstats.un.org/unsd/industry/meetings/eca2009/ac175-5.PPS. What is happening is not that China is taking all the "manufacturing", but they are taking the low value portions of manufacturing like assembly which are the lowest paying manufacturing type jobs no matter which country you are in. The US has consistently increased it's share of the high value portions of manufacturing (like high end machining, high technology, bio technology, fuel and commodity processing). Technology has aided that push and people who work in the industries are making far better wages than 20 years ago.

The problem with your logic is that you want to bring the low value manufacturing back, but to what end? It will pay no better than an entry level service job because the labor isn't worth that much money in the market. No one will go back to paying substantially higher prices for consumer products because they want to have more people working in low paying assembly type work.

Whether you like to admit or not, the boogeyman isn't China, their low cost laborers, or evil corporations. The inevitable march of technological progress has consistently upended those who resist it and rewarded those who adapt and move with it.

[-] 1 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

Boxman, I'd like to ask you How do we replace all of the jobs that have been outsourced?

Please don't give some generic bull - hockey like "education". If you say that , I'll say "What do we need master's degrees to flip burgers or clean hotel rooms ?

If you do say education, please show me how this results in a decent paycheck for a large percentage of our citizenry.

[-] 1 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

First, Your data is wrong or at least intentionally misleading.

China is now #1 in the world for manufacturing


China became the world's leading manufacturing nation in the world in 2010. ((yes, I know your data stopped at 2008)) And may I offer that China's Position as #1 manufacturer in 2010 did not happen overnight? Rather, it's been in the works since the 1970's.

You seem to say that china makes only spatula's , t-shirts, and coffee cups, etc. --------- well you're wrong.


They're now challenging Boeing and Airbus !!!!!!!!!!!!!!

As for those "low paying jobs" or "low end manufacturing" that we used to have, well again you're wrong. The average wage in a company making widgets is / was sustainable for the worker as well as the manufacturer. The company made money, the worker got a check to pay bills and spend, and lastly the M O N E Y S T A Y E D I N T H E U . S. !!!! Our country is dependent upon a spending consumer class that works -- that is that they are employed. If we outsource more and more jobs , one thing that does is put more people in competition with each other for fewer jobs.

As for your technological progress benefitting the people who move with it, what exactly do you mean? an example

[-] 1 points by boxman (7) from Prospect, KY 9 years ago

Ok, so the latest data shows China topping the US by a small percentage but of what significance is that? China is 20% of the world population we are 4%. How can they not be near the top given their vast human resources? Per capita, the US still produces 5X the manufactured value as China.

Secondly, your point about China competing with Boeing and Airbus - this is inevitable. Modern technology makes it possible for rapid development of even high tech products like airplanes, China has 5X the number of people we do, they are working hard to move ahead and they will inevitably succeed whether we implement protectionist measures or not. What is interesting in your linked article, high tech US manufacturing companies like honeywell see China's growing industry as a positive for them probably resulting in more jobs here.

Lastly, I will speak from experience - I have worked 20 years in manufacturing companies in the US. All three companies I have worked for manufacturer right here in the US. All three of them are still operating and all three have steadily grown over the years. Outsourcing to China isn't rampant at any of these companies (two were automotive part suppliers to US and foreign manufacturers and one is an electrical equipment manufacturer that sells worldwide) and is rarely used except on the most basic of components. What has happened is that several low level assembly and clerical workers have seen their jobs disappear because technology has drastically changed how things are made, how parts and inventories are handled inside the plant, and how supply chains have changed outside the plant. The low level workers who do still have jobs make between $11 and $13 an hour.

As an example of how people benefit from moving with technology. Material handling used to be similar to a low level assembly job, several people were needed to stock assembly lines with raw goods and move finished goods out for shipping. Paper forms were used to track inventories and supervisors would collect paperwork and reconcile everything at the end of the day. With today's technology, very little raw goods and finished goods are present in the plant at any point in time due to lean manufacturing techniques and there is a tremendous amount of automation in both the warehousing, picking and even moving operations. What used to take several laborers and a supervisor, can now be accomplished by 1 worker who can interface with complex inventory management computer systems. That 1 worker gets paid considerably more than the low level assembly worker because of their skills with computer systems. By contrast, a large number of workers still cannot do basic operations on a computer let alone run programs that are likely more complex than microsoft word or excel. The workers who kept up with technology moved out of the low level jobs into better paying jobs, the ones who don't get left behind, and are at high risk to lose their jobs, and will have a hard time getting new jobs.

[-] 1 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

You said : ""Ok, so the latest data shows China topping the US by a small percentage but of what significance is that? China is 20% of the world population we are 4%. How can they not be near the top given their vast human resources? Per capita, the US still produces 5X the manufactured value as China.""

I answer: the main significance is the TRADE DEFICIT we have !! Do you know what this deficit means? In simple yet effective terms it is $30 - 50 billion leaving this country MONTHLY. That is money leaving OUR hands and going elsewhere.

We and the rest of the world consume their goods with money we don't have. IT's like putting air into a tire that has a leak , no matter how much air you put in , it's going to leak out. that's what our trade deficit is, money going out of the USA.

Your ""Low Labor Jobs""

You know , someone still picks up the trash, cleans the offices in the buildings, serves you lunch in a restaurant, etc. These people GET PAID for the work they do no matter how menial the task may seem. Here's the important point, they then spend that money whether on bills or on goods that circulates the money back into our system.

Not everyone can have computer programming degrees, be lawyers, doctors, etc. The jobs of trash removal, cleaning, etc still need to be done -- by americans -- for some kind of respectable wage. This includes the repetive factory work sitting at a machine bending widgets. These people live more modest lives, BUT STILL SPEND their money and pay taxes.

To give their jobs to wage slaves is basically....a step towards slavery and removing the lower rung of the middle class ladder. That ladder then begins to break.

[-] 1 points by boxman (7) from Prospect, KY 9 years ago

Yes I know what a trade deficit is. Two points regarding that: A large driver of our trade deficit is oil importation. Our economy is so large that we don't have the internal natural resources to support it, and we have been blocked from using the resources we do have. Secondly, you oversimplify the the meaning of the deficit. You can't run a deficit unless someone loans you the money - so in order for us to spend money we don't have, somebody has to invest the money somewhere. It's not a 1:1 net loss of money to the economy as most of the money to finance the trade deficit is invested in US assets. I do agree that the current situation is unsustainable, but your proposed solution of eliminating free trade will have the opposite effect. We export 2.1 trillion dollars worth of goods and shutting those markets through institution of trade restrictions and asking the American people, who are already drenched in government debt (to the tune of $50,000 per person) to assume the resulting loss in exports in order for the economy not to contract would be ludicrous.

Secondly, you have arbitrarily extrapolated my "low value assembly work" to mean something it doesn't when you refer to low labor jobs. In the context of manufacturing, low value assembly work is generally no longer sustainable based on the prices a good can get in the market. I never once said that the other low wage jobs like the ones you mentioned were not needed or useful. Those jobs are service jobs that are needed and they contribute greatly to the economy. They also cannot be outsourced or given to wage slaves. But unless the market as a whole is willing to pay on average 100% more for a low value good to be manufactured here (for example a $30 pair of shoes now costs $60) you can't make low value manufacturing work in the US.

[-] 1 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

Couple of quick things about --Technology vs. Labor--.

  1. Why are our shelves lined with "Made in China" ? Hours of our discourse and arguments can A N D should be summed up with this question and observation alone. That so many of the goods we use (((( thus the resources/jobs/money/etc, etc. tied to those goods )))) are again "" Made in China ""

  2. China D O E S N OT use primarily Robots or technology to make these goods. They use people. They U S E people. Even 12 year old kids !!!!

    The google search https://www.google.com/search?sugexp=chrome,mod=8&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8&q=does+china+use+12+year+olds+for+labor

source 1. http://www.businessinsider.com/apple-child-labor-2012-1 source 2. http://mashable.com/2012/02/20/nightline-inside-foxconn/

So you should be disgusted and ashamed that you continue to ignore this !!!!!!

I need to get going. But btw, a personal note here. I would love to have an $11.00 / hour job !!!!!!!!!!!! $440/week gross!!!!!!!!!!

I live in Florida and struggle like hell for a very small buz. So your lucky and blessed that your job still has people working in it at it's location and hasn't gone the way of the slave finders.

I'm from the midwest originally -- Indiana. And I do know the middle of the country...specifically Nashville area is doing fairly well from a guy I know who went there and now has an electronics job.

Again . Wal-Mart's, Dollar General's, Family Dollar's, shelves are still filled and lined with "" Made in China "". And these things are still mostly made by human hands. Not robots. This should speak volumes.

[-] 1 points by boxman (7) from Prospect, KY 9 years ago

Well we do have something in common, I grew up in Indiana as well.

I don't seem to be making much headway, but as the link provided by notaneoliberal below points out, between 1991 and 2007, 1/4 of the jobs lost in manufacturing were due to wage pressure from china. That means 3/4 of the jobs were lost for some other reason. If I'm trying to fix something, I think I'd spend my time trying to understand the 3/4 of the problem. (of which it is clearly evident to me that technology has destroyed more manufacturing jobs than anything else).

Also, it's not clear to me that you can hold an individual consumer liable for the decisions of a manufacturer. If they choose to employ children and the parents, society, government and corporations allow it, then there are many broken factors that need to be corrected before my purchasing decision makes any impact. By your reasoning anyone who has purchased illegal drugs has the blood of hundreds of thousands deaths and reams of violence against women, children, and society on their hands, but I don't see a lot of people fretting over that.

Lastly, you see a lot of Made in China items because you want to - it's called confirmation bias. In reality if you look closely, there's a lot not made in China. Start with laundry soap, bath soap, household cleaners, personal hygiene products, food products, lumber, siding, construction materials, doors windows, siding, paint, cars, farm equipment, etc. I could list a bunch more stuff not made in china.

Regardless, it doesn't seem either of us will change our mind much, but it has been an interesting conversation.

[-] 1 points by notaneoliberal (2269) 9 years ago

"China is 20% of the worlds population and we are 4%." True enough, but how is it then, that they are so dependent on the US and Euro markets. How is it that we have a $295.5465 billion (2011) trade deficit with China. Seems like they should have a sufficient market for their own products. But then $1 an hour doesn't buy all that much, does it. China needs to pay their workers a decent wage. That is not something that the US can impose on China but that would solve that problem. The point is, jobs were not sent to China to "help" the Chinese worker. The went to China to exploit them and to line the pockets of the outsourcing companies. If the companies you worked for remained here, you should consider yourself very fortunate. Millions of US workers have not been so lucky. http://www.thefiscaltimes.com/Articles/2012/02/26/The-High-Price-of-Losing-Manufacturing-Jobs.aspx#page1

[-] 2 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

Response #2

Your claim : Why should we implement "o p p r e s s i v e" trade policies for those poor people in china?

My answers:

  1.  Why don't we look after Americans before ANY other countries citizens first ???????

   2.  Here are some FACTS about those poor chinese workers.  Yes,

they really do deserve some pity.

              1.  Foxconn suicides :  see below inside the lines
                    source: wikipedia <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foxconn_suicides>

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia The Foxconn suicides occurred between January and November 2010, when eighteen[1] Foxconn employees attempted suicide with fourteen deaths.[1][2][3] The suicides drew media attention, and employment practices at Foxconn, a large contract manufacturer, were investigated by several of its customers including Apple, Dell and HP, fearing bad press of their own.[4][5] Foxconn is a major manufacturer catering to companies such as Apple, Dell, HP, Motorola, Nintendo, Sony and Nokia.[4][6]

The suicides prompted 20 Chinese universities to compile a report on Foxconn, which they decried as a labour camp.[2] Other experts have claimed that employees are treated comparatively well at Foxconn,[7] but news reports have been critical. Long working hours,[7] discrimination of mainland Chinese workers by their Taiwanese coworkers,[8] and a lack of working relationships[9] have all been cited as potential causes.

The suicide rate at Foxconn during the suicide spate remained lower than that of the general Chinese population,[10] and the Foxconn deaths may have been a product of economic conditions external to the company. In China in 2010 there were several major strike actions at other high-profile manufacturers in China, and the Lewisian turning-point as well as the decline in the surplus Chinese labour-pool are two potential macro-economic factors.[11][12]

[-] 2 points by bringourjobsback (64) 9 years ago

I'm going to give you several responses.

This is response #1.

Technology / Automation has taken our jobs ???? ... Then why do we still buy Chinese products????? Why are'nt we making automation factories here instead of shiping them across ... Why are the shelves in our stores filled with Made in China?

Dont' try to answer with the Chinese have robots. Here are some Facts you want:

....FoxConn, a chinese company, World's LARGEST maker of electronic components and largest exporter in greater china. ----------FoxConn's number of Employees (not robots) : 1.2 Million in 2011 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foxconn

This is just FoxConn.

This should substantially address the robots vs people claim.