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  • No Longer Made in the USA

    Can you name any of the more than 42,000 manufacturing plants America lost since 2001? read this article and reconsider wheter or not our country needs a strong manufacturing base.
    http://prospect.org/article/plight-a...-manufacturing

    This link shows state by state the over 22 million manufacturing jobs lost.
    http://americadeclines.com/By_State2.html
    Last edited by Frankiarmz; 07-26-2013, 12:18 AM.

  • #2
    Re: No Longer Made in the USA

    Interesting Frank,

    However, many of those places closes long ago for one reason or another that had nothing to do with the current recession we are just starting to climb out of.
    They also missed at least a half dozen places I can think of that closed since 1980.

    Some of those they did mention closed and the company moved south to cheaper labor and to escape laws which protected the environment, workers rights, lower corporate income taxes, lower property taxes, and a host of other reasons. Some of those factories pictured were some of the first built in the country, and were outdated and couldn't be updated and remain profitable or were hemmed in with no room to expand, so they had to move to grow.

    They forgot to mention the huge glass factories in Vineland, Millville, Bridgeton and Salem, which between them probably employed over 10,000. There were also the canning factories and frozen food plants which easily employed another 6000 or 7000. Coca-cola, 7-up, Hires all had large bottling plants here. Hunts and Ritter had ketchup plants here because of the plentiful tomato crops. Seabrook Farms, Green Giant, and others operated frozen food plants and cold storage facilities in South Jersey too.

    I know being from the general area you are most likely aware of all this, for those who are not I have listed just of the jobs lost from this area over the past 40 years.
    ---------------
    Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
    ---------------
    “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
    ---------
    "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
    ---------
    sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: No Longer Made in the USA

      Bob, there is a lot of information out there and it is hard to sort through the specifics of when and under what circumstances they closed. There was on link that spoke about how factories were moved south to avoid certain local laws up north and for cheaper labor, however a lot of those were later moved offshore for even cheaper labor and to avoid the EPA, OSHA and other gov't oversight.
      The common theme seems to be the massive loss of these big manufacturing plants, the revenue they provided to the local communities and of course all the folks they employed.
      My personal concern is that nothing has filled the void created and nothing will. If I am right that unless the math changes and somehow we begin to turn the trade deficit around, how can we expect to avoid a future collapse as gov't spending eventually reaches a critical point? Can we spending in the red indefinitely, and keep borowing to support a populace that does not work and does not make most of what it consumes?

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: No Longer Made in the USA

        Good post Frankie and Bob D.

        It is funny in that I was just lementing to someone yesterday about this very subject. We were talking about jobs and opportunities for younger people in our area here in NY's "Southern Tier". The fact is there is very little, except in the service sector.

        In the 60's through the early 80's there was thousands of jobs in our area. IBM alone had several plants in the area, with major facilities in Endicott, Owego, Glendale.... today, the hot topic is that Endicott in dissolving it's police dept, because it can no longer afford to have it. Endicott up through the 80's was a major city of the "Tri-Cities" area, with furniture shops, theaters, hotels, restaurants, fashion shops for men and women, etc. Today it is run down and many of those old store fronts are abandoned.

        The "Greater Binghamton Area" as it is now called, consisted of the cities of Binghamton, Johnson City, and Endicott, with ajacent communities of Vestal, Conklin, Westover, Kirkwood, Hillcrest, Port Dickinson, Chenango Bridge, Union, Endwell and others. We hosted IBM, GE, Link Simulation, GAF (Ansco), Endicott-Johnson, Vail-Ballou Press, Tichner Steel, Universal Instruments, Kroeler Furniture, Fairbanks Valve, Stowe Mfg., Kupfrian Mfg. and a few other manufacturers that I can't think of at the moment. With these where hundreds of shops, and dozens of garages, bakeries, movie theaters, sub-contract shops, machine shops, department stores, and a wealth of Mom-and-Pop businesses from hobby centers to neighborhood grocery stores. ALL of these big manufactureres are gone now! Not a single one exists in our area today. We're talking probably over 50,000 jobs or more in consideration of all the smaller support industries that existed.

        And west of here, in the Elmira-Corning area was similar, though smaller industries like American LaFrance (fire trucks), Ward LaFrance (fire hydrants), Remington-Rand, Thatcher Glass, A&P Food Processing (the largest food processing plant in NA), Westinghouse, Phillipps Lighting, Ingersoll-Rand, and Corning Glass, Hilliard, Hardinge, and again other that don't come to mind presentlyl. Most of those are now gone and in the case of Corning and (now) Dresser-Rand, have been reduced to a a fraction of what they once were. Again, thousands of jobs for the middle class, for those with little education but with capable hands.

        Who do you blame for this? Surely much has to be contributed to technology itself. Things like typewriters are afterall no longer needed. But frankly, that accounts of only one or two small plants. IBM mainframe equipment is part of what 'went away' too, but they decided that the new technology of "PC's" was beyond their abilities and thus sold off most of it to China. Film went away too, and so the decline of places like GAF and Kodak... but again that was a failure of management to see the new technologies of "digital". The world buys a lot more cameras' today than ever... but they are now all made in China!

        We still need printing, we still need shoes, we still need fire hydrants and fire trucks, aircraft (and other) simulators, and we still need manufacturing in everything from fasteners to cables to hair dryers to toasters and on and on. NOW, all made in China!

        The WHY's are many, and it is very, very easy to blame the government, environmental controls, labor law, health benefits, etc. But that's an easy out and a poor excuse, as we know that China will be and is demanding these things too. And we might well ask ourselves what it is we want with jobs. Is it fair to our families, our neighbors, and all our children to swap jobs for polluted rivers that ravage our communities with cancer? Do we want air that we cannot breath? Is is fair for workers to be killed and injured because the workplaces are unsafe? Yet it is often the "laws" of our protective government that we use as the reasons for the loss of our jobs.

        What we don't want to have to admit is that those who employed us are seeking escape from all of that and they found it by going "offshore". They found they don't have to pay workers or treat workers humanely. They don't have to put up with inspections, paperwork, and the myriad of "overhead" expenses to stay in business... all they really have to do is "grease the palms" of the right people and everything is fine (at least for a while). They can then turn it all around and blame US for the problem and say that WE are the reason. Afterall, it is US demanded cheaper prices! It is the unions who demanded, not a piece of the pie, but totally unfair wages and benefits (like what the management was already getting). It was the government and their EPA with its "too stringent" rules... like okay, pick up your crap and stop dumping it in your worker's rivers and wells and back yards, because your killing their children!

        Most all of this "off-shore" process started in the 80's, when pension plans were robbed and rewritten, when factories were closed, and when encentives were there to profit from elsewhere. We made the "dollar" so strong, that it was easy to use them to buy elsewhere. It wasn't just the rich that could enjoy a cheap vacation in Europe, but industry could buy manufacturing there also. It was cheaper still to get permits to build plants in Asia, where environmental and labor concerns were both very low, but also very easy to bypass.

        BUT, it was also a matter of work and management ethics too. Manufacturing in the late 60's and certainly in the 70's was a joke of extremely bad quality. Whether it was the devil-may-care attitude of the workforce or the "we don't want it right, we want it Tuesday" attitude of management can be argued. But between the poor steel, sloppy assembly, and even worse service our automobiles became a laughing stock when compared to product from Japan and Europe. Even in a heavy industry like the one I worked in, we saw product development fail on several products. Too complex, too challenging, poor marketing, lousey attitudes in the shops and in the offices. Morale in the plant was never lower and management was never more callous. Things that once could be made with pride were now embarrassing evident and work that was once fun became days of useless stress. Was it Reaganomics or just the fact that management was seeing greater empowerment? What we saw was a government that wielded it's power on behalf of the CORPORATION and the worker began getting the very dirty end of the stick! The trend has continued and as prices have risen and jobs have been lost, those in the power have led us all to believe that what's good for big business is good for all of us and that the fault is within ourselves and with the Chinese and with the Unions and with the demands of us consumers who demand nothing more than cheapest priced products possible. IT IS ALL the fault of the MIDDLE CLASS... or the Chinese (or so they want us to all believe.)

        CWS

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: No Longer Made in the USA

          Great post CWS, you sort of summed it all up. We did get a cleaner environment in place of all those factories and jobs. Big businesses had good cause to leave and increase their profit margins while escaping all the government oversight. As a twenty year old man in the early 70's I would have said "Right On!'. Today as a retired 60 year old, I have to question how our government can continue to acquire trillions in debt to run the country and pay out benefits? I have to question how our consumer dollars only flow out of our economy, and how much longer this can go on?
          The factories we had were dirty, they made the workers sick, and the environment dirty. Strict new laws deter manufacturing if not make it impossible. I admit, I don't know the answer, but I am pretty sure unless there is a radical change to how we are currently doing things the future does not look good. When we are done blaming ourselves, our government, the communists and the rest of the world that controls our exports (few that they are), then what? In the absense of a practical, progressive plan to employ the masses and revitalize the economy, it just a matter of time until the debt and services, and benefits stop!
          I'll ask once more, does anyone have a rational, reasonable idea of how our economy will turn around so that the masses are employed full time, our wealth does not leave never to return, our government becomes fiscally responsible? I need more than pep talks and grand speeches.

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: No Longer Made in the USA

            Slowly but it will turn. Economies are driven by innovation and need. Right now, everyone seems to need a smart phone which although the technology comes from here, the manufacturing does not. I have long said that what we need is a few hugely expensive and technologically difficult national projects that will cause innovation, invention and growth. We should build a colony on the moon, or send men to mars or build a sub oceanic colony. Maybe ultra-high speed transportation or something that puts fossil fuels permanently on the back burner. Above everything else the cost of energy drives the economy.
            sigpic

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: No Longer Made in the USA

              Establishing a lunar colony makes more sense to me than planning on taking a man to Mars at some point in the future.
              It seems to me (someone with next to no knowledge of space travel) that making leaving and returning to Earth routine event
              and working out the bugs in extended stays outside our atmosphere would be the most important. Small steps compared
              to landing a man on Mars maybe, but just as important if not more so. If you look back at all the we gained from the race
              to the Moon from the Apollo program, it is amazing. Products and technologies that we use today and take for granted were
              developed as part of the space program. Some didn't make it to space but it turns out had terrestrial uses which made their
              development worthwhile.

              Unfortunately the public does not have the stomach or the pocketbook to support such endeavors, be they in space or here
              on Earth. We really need to improve our mass transit systems, and the rest of our infrastructure is crumbling too. Not
              glamorous projects I know but they need to be undertaken if we want to have a chance at being a major player in the future.
              We waste too much money on wars and not enough on large projects like space, new forms of energy or ways to store energy
              which I consider the next big thing. The person, company, or country that develoes a method of storing solar energy gathered
              during the day and a way to distribute it when needed is going to rule the world.

              First is not always best, its just first. Until the next guy comes along and improves on your design, first works out just fine,
              but after that you're playing catch up, and we (the US) are too cheap to play, so we have been slowly losing out advantages
              in engineering, manufacturing capacity, and a qualified workforce erode to the point where we can barely keep up any more.

              Don't talk to me about WWII and how we out-produced the rest of the world. Yes we did and I am not taking anything away
              from that, but look at it for what it is. We had no damage to our manufacturing infrastructure, no bombs fell in the contiguous US,
              only Pearl Harbor. We lost a good portion of the Pacific Fleet, but we had 100% of our shipyards still fully operational and cranking
              out tonnage every day non-stop. A liberty ships were launched every day, with a build time of about 40 days each. Many of those
              yards were here on the east coast, in Philly, Camden, and elsewhere. Today they are pretty much all gone or sitting idle.
              ---------------
              Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
              ---------------
              “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
              ---------
              "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
              ---------
              sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: No Longer Made in the USA

                Sorry to disagree NHM, but everyone does not need a smart phone. Everyone needs clothing, footwear, appliances, food, housing, transportaion, a few other things and a way to pay for them. If you are seriously expecting some innovation, or a grand project to colonize the moon, or ocean floor as a mechanism to save our dwindling economy keep dreaming. I go by what I see from our legislators, and the math regarding trade deficit, national debt, unemployment and so forth. Wow, talk about science fiction and dreams, I don't know wheter to just laugh or be depressed?

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: No Longer Made in the USA

                  Frank, I believe we need to do both, take on the big projects that have long term benefit to mankind AND address the problems that we face day-to-day.
                  Truth is we do little of either. We waste so much money, effort, and time cleaning up train wrecks, broken down bridges, and fighting amongst ourselves and with others.
                  ---------------
                  Light is faster than sound. That's why some people seem really bright until you hear them speak.
                  ---------------
                  “If I had my life to live over again, I'd be a plumber.” - Albert Einstein
                  ---------
                  "Its a table saw.... Do you know where your fingers are?"
                  ---------
                  sigpic http://www.helmetstohardhats.com/

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: No Longer Made in the USA

                    Originally posted by Bob D. View Post
                    Frank, I believe we need to do both, take on the big projects that have long term benefit to mankind AND address the problems that we face day-to-day.
                    Truth is we do little of either. We waste so much money, effort, and time cleaning up train wrecks, broken down bridges, and fighting amongst ourselves and with others.
                    Bob, in the utopia of "ifs" I agree we would have cooperation among leaders, responsibility among our citizenship and progressive movement towards a bright future. In the here and now, I see nothing to point towards that behavior or those goals. What we have is serious debt and waste with no plan or mechanism to change any of that.
                    We don't need the occassional terrorist attack to upset our lives and distract us from the hard work that needs to be done. Our infrastructure is decaying faster than it is being repaired. Most folks are so concerned with their immediate problems, or distracted by the media circus that they have no understanding of how critical our economic problems have become. Wheter we are joking or serious about colonizing the moon or seas, we can't possibly expect resolution to the serious issues considering the actions of republicans or democrats leading our country. Big business deals in profit and ripe markets, not our national well being.
                    I believe we can expect damaging weather, stories about athletes and celebrities, and some crime stories to occupy our news headlines.
                    With the excpetion of a few flukes, most successful businesses have a plan, a model for success. My take on the economy is a recipe for failure. Honest visionaries with the personality to effect change are not visible. Much as I want to be hopeful, I have nothing tangible to go on.
                    We will keep on importing most of our consumer goods and exporting the only thing our suppliers will take from us, our almighty dollar.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: No Longer Made in the USA

                      I didn't read the responses (yet), but here's an interesting point....soon, no one is going to have manufacturing jobs.

                      As manufacturing jobs go, even China, India, Mexico and ALL low cost labor markets are in trouble.

                      The reason - robotics and technology.

                      Consider the more complicated manufacturing jobs that require a level of worker discretion, the ability to spot defects & repair them as an example.

                      We know robots perform mindless repetitive tasks, but consider that there is software that can now recognize faces, patterns and shapes, and it's not a stretch to imagine software that can spot material/product defects in a production line and take corrective measures with no human interaction.

                      If that seems like a stretch -
                      I got my wife a Roomba, it remembers room dimensions, automatically backs away from obstructions and continues vacuuming

                      Another example, 10 years ago a decent web site for my business would have cost me a few grand $$ and a week or two to wait for the HTML designers.

                      Now, most Domain sponsors offer free software you can drag/drop your own site with comparable quality, all the HTML, Javascript and CSS coding is done automatically by the software.

                      If it interests you, do a web search for "Keynes 15 hour work week", he saw this coming 80 years ago and speculated that we'd be down to a 15 hour work week by the 2030's because technology would reduce the total hours we need service society.

                      Currently, it looks like we might meet his prediction.
                      Last edited by DuckButter; 07-27-2013, 11:23 PM.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: No Longer Made in the USA

                        Yeah, I remember my highschool years when there was a lot of talk (and some excitement) about how humanity, especially in advanced companies like the U.S. would be working twenty hours or less, and that the new markets would be in recreation and leisure. I recall how some of my classmates thought how wonderful all this would be and that we would not have to work our asses off like our fathers!

                        Of course we were quite naive in underestimating the power and greed of management, where it would come to laying off more than half the workers, and threatening the remaining, if they did not work twice as hard, for half the pay.

                        I do NOT like robotics and consider them in most applications to be demeaning to humans. And, I refuse to use automatic tellers, automatic 'self-serve' cashiers, etc. People don't seem to get the fact that those machines cost a bloody fortune and for the cost of one machine you could have employed a person or two for more than a year. Yet customers flock to them like they are wonderful and fantastic objects of pleasure. People don't realize that not only do they cost jobs, but they also force you to do work in which you are not receiving any kind of compensation in the way of discount or anything else. At present, they may well save you a minute or two, but once all cashiers are done away with, there will be lines at the robot just like before.

                        Take for example the task of pumping gas. I grew up in a time when you pulled into your friendly gas station and some young guy came out and not only pumped your gas but checked your oil, wiper fluid, and even looked over your tire to ensure they were not under pressurized. It also provided a friendly face, good conversation, and some satisfaction that your car was okay and safe. Now we pump our own gas, nobody checks the pressure or the oil or cleans the windshield unless we do it ourselves. And the clerk who takes our money is usually unfriendly and bored because that is a thoughtless and thankless task. On top of that you get to deal with surly people who have left their car at the pump ahead of you to go buy a few lottery tickets, and you have to put up with the nasty guy behind you is in a big rush; and in the end you drive away with smelly and dirty hands, a lot of time wasted, and what may have been a good mood, now one as nasty as the jerks you just had to deal with!

                        We put in a couple of welding robots in the factory back in the early 90's. Layed off several very good welders as a result and really pi$$ed off the Union guys which slowed down everything in the shops. We had to hire some much-more expensive programmers and I know between the cost of the robots, the set-up and installation, and the programming time and salaries and benefits would have kept those original welders in our employ for the better part of ten years! The results were that the robots could weld up a subbase in a little more than half the time it took the welders to do it. BUT, the time it took to place the steel members and remove the final assembly were not reduced at all... in fact, it now took longer because you had to work around the fixed-position robots, while the welders moved out of the way and usually to another assembly project. Of the hundred or more subbase frames that were welded up in the first two months of operation, more than 70% were found to be defective, with cracks in the weld, or welds not fully addressed at some seams. And there was a lack of consistancy too, which is what the original objective of "robotics" was all about. In less than a year, the company scrapped the robots and hired new weldes.

                        Robotics can be good, especially in applications that are dangerous to employees. But just to automate for the sake of automation is just narrowminded. When management's objectives seem to be to simply replace workers, then I am totally against automation. People need to be appreciated and they need jobs. Workers can be versatile, and robots are most always built to do one task only.

                        No thanks, I'll gladly take my business to a friendly face any time.

                        CWS

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: No Longer Made in the USA

                          Gosh CWS, your post above accurately describes my attitude towards replacing people with machines. I would rather stand in line to have a real person check me out than opt for a machine. I feel that automation should be implimented wisely because of the ramification it has on people and jobs. Just because we have the technology to do certain things does not mean it should be done without foresight.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: No Longer Made in the USA

                            Originally posted by Frankiarmz View Post
                            Gosh CWS, your post above accurately describes my attitude towards replacing people with machines. I would rather stand in line to have a real person check me out than opt for a machine. I feel that automation should be implimented wisely because of the ramification it has on people and jobs. Just because we have the technology to do certain things does not mean it should be done without foresight.
                            Nobody cares what you'd rather, they care about profit. For all the "low information" readers that basically means that contrary to what the highly paid sycophants are spewing on a daily basis, capitalism is not the panacea that they would have you believe it is. The rich get richer, the poor don't give a crap and the rest of us spin our wheels and take BP medication to keep our heads from exploding.
                            sigpic

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: No Longer Made in the USA

                              Well, excuuuuuuuus meeeeeeeeee! I take exforge for my high blood pressure. Cheer up NHM we are just one Presidential speech away from turning this economy around and colonizing the moon

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