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Old 11-07-2012, 08:47 PM
 
Location: San Diego California
6,797 posts, read 6,588,928 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andywire View Post
I've mostly worked for small "mom and pop" shops. I've also worked for a couple large corporations. The differences are immense. I'll list a few here...

Small shops can't afford too many people, so they hire a few people who can do many things. These are skilled workers who can do one job, than move on to another job that is completely different, and so on. This type of worker is sharper, more flexible, quicker to adapt and learn, more skilled, and most important BETTER PAID. This worker is paying taxes at the end of the year guaranteed. Bigger shop? Well, you get the McDonald's effect. The job is dumbed down to the point that a monkey could do the it, because after all, you can find anyone to do that job. That worker is sucking up tax payer subsidies to make ends meet.

Small shop has pride in their work, and is very competent in what they do. They have to be, because after all, they have to charge more to make ends meet and afford better paid workers. They have to provide some incentive to charge that higher price. Big shop doesn't care if the work is garbage. Their prices are so low, they have lines of customers waiting to buy. You take a hike if you got a problem. They make their money on bulk and and value, not quality. Never seen quality work come out of a shop like this.

Small shop is training workers to meet their labor needs. High quality workers aren't a dime a dozen. Skilled and high quality workers, now there is a combination especially difficult to find. Find the right one young, invest in them, and grow the skills you need. Big shops... Well, they've found ways to allow cheap labor to be productive, but they haven't completely eliminated the need for highly skilled workers for some roles. Since they pay so little, they can afford to steal the workers they need, but they refuse to grow the skills they need. Quality workers don't take $8/hr no skill jobs, so their potential trainable pool is rather limited anyways.

Smaller shops tend to treat their workers much better. Almost like a family... They intend to keep their workers happy so they don't sell their time down the street. Big shop doesn't care. Their jobs are so low skilled, they can find any idiot off the street to do the work. I've seen alcoholics and drug addicts do these jobs. Who cares if they aren't happy? Enjoy your food stamps, and if you ask for a raise, you're gone.

Where the big corporations have made their money... Dumb down the work so you can reduce your prices, and skim off the top if possible. Automation and technology plays a big role in this too. When people whine about China stealing jobs, they completely overlook the robot that just eliminated 100 workers. When work from China comes back that took 100 workers, it's usually because 1 worker and an automated machine can can achieve the same level of productivity. Skilled workers are not needed nearly as much as before, yet the reward does not go into that worker's paycheck. It goes to the customer getting a better value, and the corporation. Go ahead and reshore every manufacturing job... You'll never employee 25% of the working population manufacturing however...

At any rate, the problem I see. Big companies make their money by paying less, selling more for less, and selling huge quantities. Their workers pay is subsidies by the dwindling tax paying base. Tax holidays for large corporations is absolutely undeserved. Small companies make their money by selling smaller quantities of higher quality goods and services. If you're going to have an economy driven by large companies, you will have a country filled with lower paid workers. If you want a first world standard of living, you need to have an economy driven by companies providing higher quality goods/services which pay better wages to attract the capable workers. This is why many European countries like Germany have a better standard of living, and a more solid and balanced economy. Prosperity is not legislated, it is earned. We can manufacture high quality products, but that requires a more educated, skilled and passionate workforce. Many problems and roadblocks there admittedly...
In addition to the points you mention, the mom and pop business in past times was the path to upward mobility for non college educated people.
Hardware stores, gas stations, shoe stores, clothing stores, sporting goods stores, jewelry stores, television repair and sales, appliance stores, bakeries, and many more small businesses were driven out of business by the big box stores who purchased imported goods in huge bulk.
Millions and millions of micro businesses driven under and replaced by low paying jobs with little future in big box stores. The wealth of millions of Americans now concentrated in the hands of a few CEO's.
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Old 11-07-2012, 09:38 PM
 
Location: Metro Detroit, Michigan
17,380 posts, read 16,078,637 times
Reputation: 17244
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimhcom View Post
In addition to the points you mention, the mom and pop business in past times was the path to upward mobility for non college educated people.
Hardware stores, gas stations, shoe stores, clothing stores, sporting goods stores, jewelry stores, television repair and sales, appliance stores, bakeries, and many more small businesses were driven out of business by the big box stores who purchased imported goods in huge bulk.
Millions and millions of micro businesses driven under and replaced by low paying jobs with little future in big box stores. The wealth of millions of Americans now concentrated in the hands of a few CEO's.

Regarding upward mobility for non college grads... What this has done was forced a lot of young folks into the college track. Problem is, adding more college grads to the mix is not going to help. We are saturated, and plenty of well paying companies have found ways to limit their needs for highly skilled workers. Technology improves efficiency, and improved efficiency means you can do far more with less. Many educated engineers have been reduced to little more than mere CAD operators, salesman and technicians. These jobs would have gone to HS grads at any other point in our country's history. Blame anyone you like, but many college grads will be taking jobs at these big box stores because of this. They might have the best shot at a promotion, but it seems like a terrible waste of resources to me.

Plenty of small businesses had use for college grads in the past as well though. Engineering firms, accounting firms, medical practices... Small businesses have really felt the pinch. It seems the government has been bending over backwards for the mega sized businesses, while little has been done to help the small businesses that employ the majority of Americans. Unfortunately, it takes money to make money in this country. Caste society??? I believe so. We enjoy a relatively pitiful upward mobility index for a so called 1st world nation. We still attract many immigrants from 2nd world nations like Mexico and India, but it seems everyone else has decided the American dream is on life support. For that, I blame the politicians for catering to the crowd who already accumulated the bulk of the wealth. And let's not even get started on the great scam of the FIRE side economy, while actual productive capacity has been shelled out long ago. We are a very neutered nation...
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Old 11-07-2012, 10:30 PM
 
Location: I live wherever I am.
1,935 posts, read 4,062,008 times
Reputation: 3266
Quote:
Originally Posted by robertpasa View Post
Steve Jobs commented that it's really easy to open a factory in China, but it's really hard to open a factory in America.

Offshoring/outsourcing has been a huge problem for at least 20 years, but what can be done to encourage American companies to keep their factories inside the US?

One problem is that if you're a politician and you do something that causes American companies to lose money, you will be voted out in two days.

Another relevant Steve Jobs comment was that they have so many engineers in China that help out in the factories. He implied that it's hard to find engineers in America, although he didn't mean PhDs. (My source is the biography of Jobs by Walter Isaacson.) One day Jobs decided he wanted to make an Ipod with a really nice aluminum case so he opened a factory in China for just that. I wonder if he even considered opening it in America.
What can be done? It's very simple.

1) Repeal the minimum wage laws at the federal level. A free market will determine its own acceptable wages when there is agreement between employees (who determine what they're willing to work for) and employers (who determine what they're willing to pay). We offshore because it's much cheaper to do so. It ain't easier - it's cheaper. Repeal laws that require employers to pay one person in America what they could pay ten people in China, and we'll see change.

2) Repeal onerous tax and accounting laws on businesses. Payroll taxes? Social security taxes? Withholding? Health insurance? Yadda yadda yadda yadda. Just LET 'EM GIVE PEOPLE MONEY IN EXCHANGE FOR WORK and LEAVE THEM THE *bleep* ALONE!!!! I can tell you that I thought about hiring people to expand my business but decided against it because it was too much hassle, and would've been too expensive to hire someone else to take care of the hassle for me. This is a definite squeeze on businesses.

3) Enact tax and trade laws which discourage trade with other countries and encourage business to remain within America. That's often derided as "protectionism"... but isn't that what we're talking about right now... PROTECTING jobs in our country and preventing them from going overseas?

End of economics lesson.

Oh by the way, America, you didn't do what you needed to do, last night, to step in the right direction with this. I'm not saying Romney was the best choice either... but how many of y'all voted for someone OTHER than Obama or Romney?
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Old 11-07-2012, 10:52 PM
Status: "Trump - excepting Jorgensen, the least of multiple evils" (set 20 days ago)
 
Location: Nescopeck, Penna. (birthplace)
13,851 posts, read 8,495,898 times
Reputation: 17923
Quote:
Originally Posted by GreggT View Post
What has this got to do with the original question about off-shoring? (other than just another political rant)
Because, that's what it all boils down to. Rule by the markets, rule by reason, or rule by an economically ignorant mob, who will eventually go looking for someone -- anyone but themselves, to blame.
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Old 11-08-2012, 06:40 AM
 
Location: San Diego California
6,797 posts, read 6,588,928 times
Reputation: 5180
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2nd trick op View Post
1929 - stock market crash -- not much trouble on Main Street
1930 - Smoot-Hawley tariff
1931 - second meltdown; much worse

be afraid; be very afraid
Smoot-Hawley hardly had time to affect the economy in one year. Depressions are not caused by tariffs; they are caused by excessive uncollateralized debt.
They are part of an engineered economic policy to take assets from the poor and concentrate wealth at the top of the food chain.
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Old 11-08-2012, 07:04 AM
 
Location: On The Road Full Time RVing
2,342 posts, read 3,074,669 times
Reputation: 2226
.
Foreign people of other countries are willing to work and do there job ! ! !

Today's American people are to lazy to work. The quality of American production
is not as good, and their employes want more money than they are worth ! ! !

American companies are not very completive in the market place,
and they have priced theirself out of business ! ! !

Also people do not buy products direct from China, or any other country .

They only buy ( freely ) from the middle man companies like Wal-Mart etc.

No one forces you to buy from them ! ! !

Stop complaning and ...
Start your own American company, and run them out of business if you can ! ! !
.
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Old 11-08-2012, 07:41 AM
 
Location: San Diego California
6,797 posts, read 6,588,928 times
Reputation: 5180
Quote:
Originally Posted by bumpus7 View Post
.
Foreign people of other countries are willing to work and do there job ! ! !

Today's American people are to lazy to work. The quality of American production
is not as good, and their employes want more money than they are worth ! ! !

American companies are not very completive in the market place,
and they have priced theirself out of business ! ! !

Also people do not buy products direct from China, or any other country .

They only buy ( freely ) from the middle man companies like Wal-Mart etc.

No one forces you to buy from them ! ! !

Stop complaning and ...
Start your own American company, and run them out of business if you can ! ! !
.
I think you have a distorted view of the situation.
America did not price itself out of business.
American wages have always been higher than anywhere else, and yet we had a thriving economy up to the 1990's, so what changed?
The change was that we allowed unprecedented access to American markets from foreign produced goods.
The truth is America has no problem being its own economy.
Globalization and the World economy are designed by the wealthy to make huge profits for the wealthy at the expense of the American worker, which if you look at our current situation, is exactly what has happened.
It is really a brilliant plan if you break it down. You cut production costs greatly by exploiting third world labor, while at the same time keeping full access to the biggest market in the world.
The American people being too ignorant to really understand the whole picture willingly participate by voluntarily purchasing the slightly less expensive goods thinking that this is somehow improving their personal financial position. In fact what they are doing is cannibalizing their own jobs base and putting themselves in direct competition with third world workers for the value of their labor.
It is hard to believe that people would be stupid enough to allow this to happen, but just look around you and it is undeniable that it is.
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Old 11-08-2012, 09:13 AM
 
Location: West Orange, NJ
12,545 posts, read 19,323,048 times
Reputation: 3711
Quote:
Originally Posted by robertpasa View Post
Steve Jobs commented that it's really easy to open a factory in China, but it's really hard to open a factory in America.

Offshoring/outsourcing has been a huge problem for at least 20 years, but what can be done to encourage American companies to keep their factories inside the US?

One problem is that if you're a politician and you do something that causes American companies to lose money, you will be voted out in two days.

Another relevant Steve Jobs comment was that they have so many engineers in China that help out in the factories. He implied that it's hard to find engineers in America, although he didn't mean PhDs. (My source is the biography of Jobs by Walter Isaacson.) One day Jobs decided he wanted to make an Ipod with a really nice aluminum case so he opened a factory in China for just that. I wonder if he even considered opening it in America.
simple. allow companies to let 14 yr olds work 16 hour days and be housed in campuses on the job site where people are willing to commit suicide because of working conditions - and we can be just as competitive.

or....invest in education here so that we have the engineers we need, as Steve Jobs indicated, to fill these jobs here. we won't get all jobs back - that's just a fact. but there are many that we could get back.
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Old 11-08-2012, 10:45 AM
 
Location: San Diego California
6,797 posts, read 6,588,928 times
Reputation: 5180
Quote:
Originally Posted by bradykp View Post
simple. allow companies to let 14 yr olds work 16 hour days and be housed in campuses on the job site where people are willing to commit suicide because of working conditions - and we can be just as competitive.

or....invest in education here so that we have the engineers we need, as Steve Jobs indicated, to fill these jobs here. we won't get all jobs back - that's just a fact. but there are many that we could get back.
The invest in education argument is not a solution for many segments of the population.
Not everyone is going to have the interest or ability to become engineers.
A healthy economy has a diverse mix of both blue and white collar workers.
In order to have a factory you need people to design and people to build, and repair.
The bottom line is we do not need to compete with the people working for a couple of dollars a day within our own markets. We simply need politicians who work for the people and the good of the country instead of Wall St. and Bankers. And all we need in order for that to happen is a population who understands the mechanics of the issue and vote accordingly.
Our real enemy is not outsourcing, or Wall St, or the Politicians as much as it is ignorance itself.
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Old 11-08-2012, 12:18 PM
 
2,538 posts, read 4,223,770 times
Reputation: 3344
Quote:
Originally Posted by RomaniGypsy View Post
What can be done? It's very simple.

1) Repeal the minimum wage laws at the federal level. A free market will determine its own acceptable wages when there is agreement between employees (who determine what they're willing to work for) and employers (who determine what they're willing to pay). We offshore because it's much cheaper to do so. It ain't easier - it's cheaper. Repeal laws that require employers to pay one person in America what they could pay ten people in China, and we'll see change.

2) Repeal onerous tax and accounting laws on businesses. Payroll taxes? Social security taxes? Withholding? Health insurance? Yadda yadda yadda yadda. Just LET 'EM GIVE PEOPLE MONEY IN EXCHANGE FOR WORK and LEAVE THEM THE *bleep* ALONE!!!! I can tell you that I thought about hiring people to expand my business but decided against it because it was too much hassle, and would've been too expensive to hire someone else to take care of the hassle for me. This is a definite squeeze on businesses.

3) Enact tax and trade laws which discourage trade with other countries and encourage business to remain within America. That's often derided as "protectionism"... but isn't that what we're talking about right now... PROTECTING jobs in our country and preventing them from going overseas?

End of economics lesson.

Oh by the way, America, you didn't do what you needed to do, last night, to step in the right direction with this. I'm not saying Romney was the best choice either... but how many of y'all voted for someone OTHER than Obama or Romney?
I'm sorry, you're views on #1 and #2 are extremely naive. I grew up in Pittsburgh, the city's history is filled with fine examples of what the business world is like with no regulations such as minimum wage. Companies will not pay even a prevailing wage, whatever that is. This is what Mexico has, look how well it is working. BTW, China has a minimum wage, which when compared with our cost of living is actually very competitive.
The problem is their overall cost of living, at least in certain parts of the country, is extremely low.

I do agree with point #3 though. These types of tariffs would cause some pain, especially initially, but in the long run they would be beneficial, at least to the average person. The problem is the average person does not run the county, multinational corporations do. They would not benefit at all, so that is why it will never happen.
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