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What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Posted by joyfulguy (My Page) on
Thu, Dec 14, 06 at 15:34

Money - $229 billion per year.

And - the jobs that go with it.

The Chinese resist buying stuff from the U.S.

As someone said on the radio this morning - where can I find some toys made in (Canada)? Almost entirely "Made in China".

Good luck to him in his quest - there's hardly any.

U.S. consumers are helping Wal-Mart torpedo the U.S. economy.

ole joyful


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

OJ,

You sure could get a lot of (upset) replies if you posted this very same post at Hot Topics.

I'm not much of a shopper, but sometimes when I do, I enjoy the hunt for what I need, made in the USA, in a small local store. It's a fun sort of challenge and occasionally I can find just what I'm looking for, and though it is usually more expensive, I don't mind paying for it.

I feel I'm helping the American worker, and the local store owner as well. Too many stores and 'shops' have closed as a result of Walmart, and I just love going into a small store and having someone greet me, and ask if I need help. The sales people on the floor are always friendly, and very helpful. My guess is that they are paid a lot better than the WM employees, thus are happier with their job and wages.

You get what you pay for when it comes to employees, I think.

Sue


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

"U.S. consumers are helping Wal-Mart torpedo the U.S. economy."

Not me - I don't buy a thing from Wal-Mart!


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Ditto. Sometimes, though, you don't get much of a choice. I had to buy a memory card for my camera while on vacation. It was the weekend and I was in a small Midwestern town about 45 minutes away from a city of any real size. I ended up at Wally World. It was either buy or not take vacation pictures. I bought. Sometimes you don't get much of a choice.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

ole joyful-
"U.S. consumers are helping Wal-Mart torpedo the U.S. economy."

I think Canada is having the same issues. Don't you think?

China's exports to Canada far outstrip imports...
www.uofaweb.ualberta.ca/chinainstitute/nav03.cfm?nav03=43222&nav02=43112&nav01=43092

China has rapidly become the USs first largest, Canadas second-largest, source of imported goods.
www.usw.ca/program/content/3194.php


steve_o-
"I was in a small Midwestern town about 45 minutes away from a city of any real size. I ended up at Wally World. It was either buy or not take vacation pictures. I bought. Sometimes you don't get much of a choice."

I've done the same thing. I prefer to frequent small/family owned business's, but it isn't always easy.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

I've never been in a Walmart and have no plans to shop there .... ever if I can help it.

I was going to say the same thing about Canada - I thought our friends north of the border had that chain, too.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

No, seriously. I have choices, and Wal-Mart is never one of them.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

The town nearest to us resisted Walmart until Walmart funded the election campaigns of a lot of pro-Walmart councillors. Once a Walmart was erected, such funding was not given again and almost the entire council was turfed. But the Walmart stays. There is no going back.

Did you know that if Walmart was a nation its economy would be 17th in the world, between Sweden and the Netherlands?

Of the 10 wealthiest people in the US, 6 are Waltons.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Here's another family that refuses to buy from the Sweatshop. But let's not kid ourselves that this is unique in America. Nobody likes a robber barron until his money has lost the stench of where it was made -- has been "laundered", and "perfumed" by (tax-deductible) donations.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Yes, we have lots of copies of that store here in Canada. And the profits find their way back to Arkansas.

And we too are shipping a lot of money to China.

An update, though - a Chinese official says that many of the companies making things in China are U.S. originated companies (and from other countries).

That are making a bundle of bucks on the stuff that they manufacture there for peanuts and sell here for ...

... whatever the traffic will bear ... as usual.

He didn't mention an item that I think is usually the case - that U.S. companies, or those from other nations, wanting to do business in China must do so as part of a joint venture with a Chinese counterpart.

I think that I did oversimplify somewhat.

Further - having lived for several years in what had been a poor nation, which had just suffered modern war sweeping across most of their land four times, I cannot find it in my heart to resent desperately poor folks in other parts of the world finding work.

And the Chinese are saying that if foreign-based companies want to sell their cars, etc. in China - they'd better make some of them there.

We'd say the same, in their shoes, wouldn't we?

Have a memorable weekend, everyone.

ole joyful


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

What does this have to do with household finances?


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

We North americans are not only shipping money to China, (via Walmart and such) we are shipping jobs there. Manufacturing is shifting from this continent to China at a huge rate. Design is shifting there as well.

As so many jobs go east, there are ever increasing numbers of unemployed and under-employed people this side of the Pacific. That hurts all of us.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

When a Walmart comes to town, many small businesses are forced to shut down and you see empty shop after empty shop in the downtown areas. If Walmart continues in this trend, there will be little to no competition left and we will all be FORCED to shop there.

Eventually we'll all be eating the exact same foods and wearing the exact same outfits because Walmart will be the only place left to shop LOL. I wonder what will happen to those low prices then? :-)


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Where people in households in this area choose to spend their money has a major effect on the economy of not only your country and mine - but of other countries, as well.

In which stores we choose to spend our money has a major effect on the viability of our municipalities, also.

Many of the Big Box stores like to locate on the periphery of urban municipalities, as it's often easier to obtain a business clearance in a rural area, and taxes are lower.

As for retailing - it isn't only Wal Mart: visit any mall, and it looks much like any other, for national and international brands are everywhere. Profits being shipped off to distant locations.

Ask your local retailer whether it's important where folks choose to spend their money - and buy products from what source - (if s/he's still managing to hold on to her/his business - usually by the skin of their teeth).

Japan loves to ship cars here (and they build them here, as well) - but will they allow cars built here to enter their market?

Have you seen any pigs flying, lately?

Actually, our vehicles are too large for good navigation in their cities.

ole joyful


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

I'm very serious in asking this question. WHAT can we do to stop our money and jobs from going to China? How do we organize? Who can help us organize? Is there enough of us. I can do something.
Walmart money may come to Arkansas but it sure is'nt being spent here.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

You can give up all unions, you can work for the same wages as those in China are paid, you can give up the freedom of choice in health benefits, you can have a political system like China. I think that would be a start for keeping jobs in your backyard. Wouldn't be a trade off I'd make.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

What can we do?

One way is to educate people about the problem. Start with yourself. Read up on what are the effects of short-sighted consumerism. Once you know the issues, begin to educate your friends. Do you belong to a church or any other group? This is part of a social justice issue that might be starting point for group action.

See the film "Mardi Gras: Made in China" for an excellent commentary on life in a Chinese sweatshop and the way we use their products. It is a compelling and revealing story about human beings and our relation to the goods we produce and consume.

"Wal-Town: The Film" is another movie worth seeing. It was produced over 2 years by 6 Canadian university students to raise public awareness about Wal-Mart's business practices and the effects of the company's policies on cities and towns across Canada. It is available on DVD, but probably not in WalMart.

I come at it from the point of view of sustaining rural communities and the family farm, but the whole question of our world's economic viability is related.

Professor John Ikerd, is worth reading, especially if you have interest in agriculture and in smaller communities. Read some of his articles in the list at the link below, particularly these:
My Top Ten Reasons for Eating Local
Whos Paying for Your Food?
Your Food Systems: Are They Secure?
Is Sustainable Capitalism Possible
Sustaining the Sacramental Commons

Here is a link that might be useful: John E. Ikerd


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Wal-Mart doesn't exactly steal our money. When they come to town and local business shuts it's doors (which is exactly what's happened here along with Lowes, HD, etc.) it's the fault of every single person who didn't give a minute of care to anything except their own pocketbook. I keep trying to spread the word for people to NOT buy plants at the box stores or we are going to lose our local nursery business. We are like a bunch of sheep.

When I lived in rural MO, Wal-Mart came to town in 1973. It served the purpose of filling in the gaps for items we previously had to drive 90 miles to get. Local business owners could continue in their market. I'm now in an urban area where people just line up for the cheap products and bemoan the loss of local business shops because local can't compete with the prices.

We make changes by speaking with our dollars. We all like to save money, but we need to recognize that our savings costs someone else something. Whether it's a job, or business or even an attitude. And jasonmi7, this has to do with household finances, because those of us who try to support local business and not big boxes need to plan our household finances accordingly.

I believe there is a market for Wal-Mart in rural areas. But the blue box mentality has spread to everything.

Gloria


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

quiltglo has it exactly right. Much as I dislike Wal*Mart, if they didn't have customers, they would go the way of Montgomery Wards and Bradlees and Venture and a dozen other chains that have disappeared.

Sometimes one has little choice in patronizing Wal*Mart, as I related earlier. But all of us who do have a choice should consider carefully how we are voting with our dollars. And that does not go just for Wally World -- it goes for Home Depot/Lowe's/Menard's and Best Buy/Circuit City and Target/KMart, too. (n.b., I partially exempt Best Buy and Target because, where I live, they are "local" companies [their headquarters and other facilities are here]).

Every time we choose to buy a lawnmower or snowblower at Big Orange instead of a local lawn-and-garden store; every time we choose to buy a toaster at "Bed, Bath, and Blonde" rather than a more local store; every time we run to Petco to buy treats for Fido and Fluffy rather than go to a local pet store -- we tell the smaller local vendors that we don't care that they pay taxes here and employ our neighbors and kids and buy newspaper advertising and printing and cleaning services locally. And we shouldn't be surprised (or annoyed) when those places of business dry up and float away. :-(


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Instead of giving up unions, how about we export them--to China? And the rest of the developing world? The sooner everyone gets paid a living wage for their work, the sooner it won't be attractive any longer to ship jobs overseas.

After all, the workers in developing nations have to make so little that it's cost-effective to ship the goods they make across the Pacific ocean, using tons of fuel oil. Once the wage gap lessens, those shipping costs will start being more of an issue.

Just think how much less oil was used for transporting goods back when things were made locally. When there were still shoe factories in NY state. So your shoes, instead of being shipped from Indonesia, were shipped from Elmira.

It's a win-win for everyone. The earth, the foreign poor, and domestic workers.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

In all fairness, Wallmart isn't the only one. Take at look at Best Buy, Circuit City, Lowes, Home Depot, Sears, Macys, JC Penney, Walgreen, Sams Club, just to name a few. The major appliance market is now infiltrated with foreign imports, as well as most all of the clothing, shoe, the automotive and steel industries. Whos to blame? It's starts in Washington D.C. and ends with the consumer buying these goods. But do we really have any choice left? Nothing is made in the USA anymore. People today just don't give a dam! Care more about corporate earnings at the expense of there own existence! The United States is becoming a third world country, loss of jobs, loss of tax revenue, and a declining lifestyle and increasing poverty base. At the same time we invest billions of dollars in Iraq to support a war which we will never win and load the oil companies choffers at our expense. It all makes sense to me. LOL


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Why do people shop at Walmart?

First let me say I don't work for Walmart, don't own stock in the company and rarely shop there. But earlier this year I visited my family in a rural area and stopped by the local Walmart. I found an incredible variety of food and goods that no local independent store could match. I was able to shop there late in the evening long after the family-owned grocer was closed. I found prices about 30% lower than I was accustomed to paying. From a consumer's perspective, Walmart is amazing and it has done a lot to boost our standard of living.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

I've lived in (what was 50 years ago) a 3rd world country, which at that time had just suffered modern war sweeping across most of it 4 times - no one need tell those people what trouble was!

I can not begrudge people in such countries where there is large unemployment and massive under-employment the opportunity to make a living.

But I think that we in our part of the world need to develop in ourselves a perspective that doesn't stop at our borders, but takes heed of the larger world.

For quite a while we have felt that what goes on in the rest of the world doesn't affect us much.

But we have found out that it did - and does.

And will, increasingly, in future.

Does that affect our Household Finance?

Ask the thosands who have been laid off.

And I agree - that we need to seek justice and compassion for people in distant countries, as well as our own.

We all live in this small, fragile world. Together.

We've been sucking the fish of the oceans, till there aren't a lot left.

So - what are our grandkids going to eat?

Good wishes for a really happy holiday, with family, loved ones and friends. And put some of those old family animosities in cold storage, if just for this one day, O.K.?

It ain't things that's important - it's people.

ole joyful


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

From a consumer's perspective, Walmart is amazing and it has done a lot to boost our standard of living.

Well, if your standard of living is defined solely by how much stuff you can buy cheaply, then, yes, Wal*Mart is amazing.

The trouble with WM is how they achieve those prices and that level of service -- by leaning hard on suppliers to provide products at ever-lower prices (obviously no one in Bentonville has heard of inflation); by inducing people to work longer hours for no additional pay (not like it was that great a pay rate to begin with); and by foisting off on all taxpayers costs like employee health coverage that conscionable companies pay for themselves.

WM will go to its suppliers and insist on a "better" price for products; many suppliers respond to that by cheaping out the product and moving production outside of the U.S. to places with lower labor costs. WM goes to great pains to schedule employees so they don't work too many hours on the books (which would qualify them for overtime and additional benefits). If you are one of those people whose job at a WM supplier was lost to off-shore manufacturing, or if you can't take your kid to the doctor because your low-wage job at WM does not include affordable medical coverage, your perception of a "higher" standard of living is different.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Food? More than half of the fruits and vegetables in the supermarkets are not even grown in this country but imported and shipped in. Have you noticed the increasing number of Ecoli outbreaks? How bout imported beef and lord knows what else. It's pathetic!!


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Air planes, heavy industrial and ,hightech equipments that China don't know how to build:-)


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

"Have you noticed the increasing number of Ecoli outbreaks? "
The ecoli outbreaks we have experienced personally were indeed on imported food, that is food imported into Canada from the US. They were huge outbreaks because, as consumers, we have chosen to single source our food from huge California farms.

If you want more assurance about food quality, buy where you know the source. Find our about CSA's (community shared agriculture) in your area. This is where non-farm people purchase, in advance, a share of the crop of a farmer. Then each week during the growing season they select a basket of produce from the farm. Many of the farms have city sites where they deliver the produce, so it is not strictly a rural thing. Some CSA's offer meat and eggs as well as vegetables and fruits.
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tuanh: to your comment, I would add one word: yet.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Waste products like paper. That is what we export.

The irony is the heavy industrial equipment they are snapping up cheap is from our closed factories that are moving there. They are gaining ground in the high tech field due to unfair trading regulations and are set to enter the luxury goods market.

To paraphrase "there is a high coast to your $10 toaster oven". The startling thing is how our economy has changed in the past 10 years. Take a look at Rubbermaid and Walmart. Rubbermaid being Fortune's top company in 1995 and Walmart in 2005. Rubbermaid paid well, was competitive and then they made a deal with Walmart. There is a high road and a low road in capitalism and these two companies illustrate that.

What can we do? Lots! Although it is no longer just Walmart, there are companies that work on a different business model like Costco. They say all politics are local so start on a local level. Let your voice be heard. The most important thing we can all do is vote them ALL OUT ever 4 years lol. When politics become their career that is when they can be bought. We need lobbying reform and not to let corporate america be the only voice in Washington. The number of lobbyist has increased tri-fold in the last 4 years.

and, yes! It does have everything to do with household finances. Imagine we ran debt like our country has. We don't even know all the consequences of our trade deficit. We can see the weakening dollar as a result and there is no doubt that it effects our foreign policy decisions.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

What do we export? Airplanes. China's airlines fly almost exclusivly Boeing. Engineering services.

What's the biggest mistake we can make? Get the government to "fix" the problem. Command economies didn't work anywhere else they've been tried, so why make the same mistake here?

If you don't like Wal-Mart buy a Snapper lawnmower. They told Wal-Mart to take a leap. But don't be a shill for the unions trying to drive up their income.

Imagine we ran debt like our country has.
You mean a debt that's 3.5 times our income? I'll bet most people have that level of debt.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Imagine we ran debt like our country has.
You mean a debt that's 3.5 times our income? I'll bet most people have that level of debt.

Well, I don't and if your bet is correct it is directly related to the issue at hand.

If you don't like Wal-Mart buy a Snapper lawnmower. They told Wal-Mart to take a leap. But don't be a shill for the unions trying to drive up their income

Unions need a voice just like corporate america does. The decline in unions has also seen a direct decline in workers ability to make a living. As far as driving up incomes? Most people just want to make a living wage and have the ability to take care of their families and not risk going bankrupt due to a medical emergency. It is too bad we can't have an adult discussion without name calling. We all just want the best for our families. Remember Rubbermaid was a competitive company and took care of it's employees.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Since this hasn't been said yet I wanted to add this to the discussion.

China is a communist country that has one of the worst human rights records on earth.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Don't we still export cigarettes to China? ;)

This has been a fascinating read, you guys. And I have to say, it's done my heart glad to discover so many like-minded souls out there! I really mean that.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

"China is a communist country that has one of the worst human rights records on earth."

China and Wal-Mart could sure learn a lesson from this guy.
www.grameen-info.org/

"Lasting peace cannot be achieved unless large population groups find ways in which to break out of poverty," the Nobel Committee said in its citation. "Microcredit is one such means. Development from below also serves to advance democracy and human rights."


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

China and Wal-Mart could sure learn a lesson from this guy.
www.grameen-info.org/

So could a bunch of chief executives in Washington ...

Our ability to "fight terror" will be impaired as long as certain people refuse to believe there is an economic component to it. As long as economic power is so weak (and outright poverty is so strong) that there seems to be no alternative but revolution and terrorism, true peace will not exist.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

I agree with you 100%, Steve.

Unless we have some justice, which includes the economic kind, we'll have wars and revolutions.

And people growing poppies in Afghanistan, that are moved by the warlords ...

... and the manufactured product of which many in the U.S. are buying.

Not thru Wal-Mart.

But those amounts are unrecorded, so are invisible additions to the drain.

ole joyful


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Oil and Cotton. Is this a quiz, or do the responses need to be in the correct order?

Have a great one!


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

concerning what this has to do with house hold finances. Has anyone considered what would happen if China got really mad at us and said we're calling in our loans as of now. would any of us have a household? We would,nt have a Walmart either.

I'm honestly curious. how in the world did we start getting in debt with China a hostile country anyway. Told you i was a dumb ole country girl.
oakeif


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

All economies, through history, wax & wane. Is ours inevitably on the wane? Could be--we can't stop other nations from developing or competing with us. Perhaps we can stop companies from being US corps. in name only, but that could also backfire. Nor can we change our social mindset back to the one my parents had. And the very thing that I am depending on to secure my looming retirement (Stock investment) is probably as big a factor in many of our social/economic ills (factory farming, poor development practices,job exportation, pollution,etc) as anything because of the pressure the market puts on companies not just for profit but for profit growth.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

concerning what this has to do with house hold finances. Has anyone considered what would happen if China got really mad at us and said we're calling in our loans as of now. would any of us have a household? We would,nt have a Walmart either.

Well, I'm pretty sure our debt to China doesn't all have a "call" feature on it. They can't just pick up the phone and demand money anymore than your bank can decide you need to pay off your mortgage tomorrow. They need to wait.

But even if they could, the total government debt China has is 330 billion, or about 7% of the outstanding public debt. It would hurt if they tried to dump it all at once, but they'd be in a pickle. If they damage our economy too much, who will buy all the goods their factories make? Where will what little of a middle class they have work? And how will that sit?

Right now China needs us a hell of a lot more than we need them.

Oh, and we started owning them money when they had to find someplace to invest all those billions of dollars we send them for their cheap goods. They can't just stick it under a mattress.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

The Chinese can use their surplus billions to buy our productive assets, real estate, etc.

Like the Saudis did/do.

Plus U A E, Dubai, Kuwait, etc.

ole joyful


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Shanon_SD you wrote:

As so many jobs go east, there are ever increasing numbers of unemployed and under-employed people this side of the Pacific. That hurts all of us.

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I am not a large fan of Wal-mart at all, but please check the facts on the US economy. We are still very strong here.

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm

A 4.6% unemployment rate is not very high.

Also give your country a little more credit. As manufacturing jobs go away, we are making those jobs up by creating other skill based jobs. If that is not the case than our unemployment rate would be MUCH MUCH higher no?


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

We could always close our borders to not just immigration, but all trade as well, decide we'll no longer operate on the world stage and retreat to the kind of isolationism that was popular before WWI. In which case our economy would totally implode. Like it or not, the world is changing, and we have to change with it.

People complain about the US economy, mainly because Madison Avenue has us all convinced that we should be able to afford a highly affluent lifestyle, when in reality most of us can't. But only 100 years ago, most of our income went to the basics of food, clothing and shelter. That stopped a long time ago. And our shelter these days is far from basic, even without all the electronic toys that many of us want.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

A 4.6% unemployment rate is not very high.

It's also not very accurate. That number does not include people who have failed to find work for so long that they just give up -- the "discouraged worker". It does not measure people working part-time when they want to work full-time. It does not count the millions of jobs which are held by undocumented aliens (or the undocumented themselves). And....

Also give your country a little more credit. As manufacturing jobs go away, we are making those jobs up by creating other skill based jobs. If that is not the case than our unemployment rate would be MUCH MUCH higher no?

...it also does not measure underemployment. There is a huge difference between an auto worker who was earning $40,000 a year plus benefits (including family health coverage, even if they had to ante up some for it) and a former auto worker who is now "skilled" at wrenching exhaust systems at SprawlMart for $12 an hour with almost no benefits. According to the government's rules, that worker still is "employed". But it should be clear to anyone that the quality of that worker's (family's) life is much different than it was just a few years ago.

Instead of gaming the system to subsidize those who already have much (in the relative sense of U.S. society) or establishing trivial litmus tests for one's patriotism or fealty to a party platform, we as a society should start deciding what kind of country we want to be: a beacon of individual rights backed up with the collective services (education, health coverage, welfare) that serve a society, or a semi-anarchist "I got mine" society of people buying increasing amounts of unnecessary stuff without regard to the human or ecological costs. I wish I could give more people (outside this forum) enough credit to discuss those topics reasonably.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

I recommend a book by Jane Jacobs, renowned city planner some of whose earlier books were required reading in that field, who, though in her 80s, still had a sharp mind until her recent death.

The book is, "Dark Age Ahead".

It seems to me that there is much validity in her viewpoints.

Perhaps many of us who are retired would be well advised to put our skills and effort to work to try to evade, or at least ameliorate, some of those potential troubles.

Like in driving - it's a good idea not to be aware only of what's going on 100 feet away from your vehicle ...
but to be aware of what's going on 1/4 of a mile ahead.

Have a great weekend - and week ahead, everyone.

ole joyful


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

If Noah had lived in the United States today the story may have gone something like this:

And the Lord spoke to Noah and said, "In one year, I am going to make it rain and cover the whole earth with water until all flesh is destroyed. But I want you to save the righteous people and two of every kind of living thing on earth. Therefore, I am commanding you to build an Ark." In a flash of lightning, God delivered the specifications for an Ark. In fear and trembling, Noah took the plans and agreed to build the ark. "Remember," said the Lord, "you must complete the Ark and bring everything aboard in one year."

Exactly one year later, fierce storm clouds covered the earth and all the seas of the earth went into a tumult. The Lord saw that Noah was sitting in his front yard weeping. "Noah!" He shouted. "Where is the Ark?" "Lord, please forgive me," cried Noah. "I did my best, but there were big problems.

First, I had to get a permit for construction, and your plans did not meet the building codes. I had to hire an engineering firm and redraw the plans.
Then I got into a fight with OSHA over whether or not the Ark needed a sprinkler system and approved floatation devices.
Then, my neighbor objected, claiming I was violating zoning ordinances by building the Ark in my front yard, so I had to get a variance from the city planning commission.
Then, I had problems getting enough wood for the Ark, because there was a ban on cutting trees to protect the Spotted Owl. I finally convinced the U.S. Forest Service that I really needed the wood to save the owls.
However, the Fish and Wildlife Service won't let me take the 2 owls.
The carpenters formed a union and went on strike. I had to negotiate a settlement with the National Labor Relations Board before anyone would pick up a saw or hammer. Now, I have 16 carpenters on the Ark, but still no owls.
When I started rounding up the other animals, an animal rights group sued me. They objected to me taking only two of each kind aboard. This suit is pending.
Meanwhile, the EPA notified me that I could not complete the Ark without filing an environmental impact statement on your proposed flood. They didn't take very kindly to the idea that they had no jurisdiction over the conduct of the Creator of the Universe.
Then, the Army Corps of Engineers demanded a map of the proposed flood plain. I sent them a globe.
Right now, I am trying to resolve a complaint filed with the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission that I am practicing discrimination by not taking atheists aboard.
The IRS has seized my assets, claiming that I'm building the Ark in preparation to flee the country to avoid paying taxes. I just got a notice from the state that I owe them some kind of user tax and failed to register the Ark as a 'recreational water craft'.
And finally, the ACLU got the courts to issue an injunction against further construction of the Ark, saying that since God is flooding the earth, it's a religious event, and, therefore unconstitutional.
I really don't think I can finish the Ark for another five or six years." Noah waited. The sky began to clear, the sun began to shine, and the seas began to calm. A rainbow arched across the sky. Noah looked up hopefully. "You mean you're not going to destroy the earth, Lord?" "No," He said sadly. "I don't have to. The government already has."


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

mcsierra, I missed the smiley in your post. So I'm not sure if you're making a joke or trying to make a point. Certainly while there are aspects of any large organization (government, Fortune 100 company, etc.) that make it seem like the left hand does not know what the right hand is doing, I think there's plenty of evidence that the "free hand" of the market does not always hold the higher interests of society in any regard at all.

It's easy to joke about the formation of unions and preserving forests and endangered species and being fair to those who live harmlessly but outside society's norms. And, certainly, any of those things can be (and have been in the past) taken too far. Ironically, most of the people I know who complain the loudest about the excesses of regulation are among the biggest beneficiaries of all that rigamarole.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

When my kids were little they had colouring books with puzzles that showed four fishermen in a boat. Their lines were tangled and you had to figure out which line actually caught the fish.

I picture government as sitting at a desk with 4 unmarked buttons. The lines under the desk are tangled and the guy at the desk is trying to figure out which button will produce which action. Finally he gives up and takes his best guess.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

LOL! Sharon, I'm afraid that all too often that's the truth. Otoh, it's somewhat true even for our choice of action as individuals. The larger and more complex the organization, the worse the tangle.

Btw, does anyone else remember the series "Yes, Minister" and "Yes, Prime Minister"? They were fabulous shows, imo.


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

Someone suggested that we export unionism, to help get a square deal for workers in low-wage countries. Which latter situation many of us agree to be a creditable purpose.

When there's 30% or so unemployment, as is true in many countries ...

... if you try to organize a union, few workers will join.

What power can a union exert?

Threaten to go on strike, to stop production, thus profits.

In such circumstances, an employer can say, "Fine ... go on strike, if you like. All that I have to do is start a rumour (never mind the bother and expense of advertising) that we're hiring ...

... and there'll be 500 people at the factory gate, tomorrow morning, looking for work".

When workers are acculturated to such a situation ...

... what possibility do you think that there may be to seduce workers into signing union cards?

Anybody here offering insulation for snowballs in Hell?

ole joyful


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

May I recommend another book?

Peter G. Peterson, Secretary of Commerce under Nixon, wrote, "Running on Empty: How the Democratic and Republican Parties are Bankrupting Our Future and What Americans Can Do About It".

It was written about 2004 (copyrighted 2004) ... and it seems to me that we're in much deeper water now.

I say, "we", because, while I, unlike my kids (dual citizens), am not a U.S. citizen, the Canadian economy is indissolubly tied to the U.S. one, and many have said that when the U.S. gets a sniffle ... Canada gets pneumonia.

Getting used to being rich is really easy, as we've found out during the past two or three generations.

Getting used to being poor is a great deal more difficult ... and we'd better start doing some serious planning about how to do that, then begin and get on with implementing that plan.

Otherwise many of us will get shot down in flames ... the fuss over those inadequate mortgages last year is just the beginning, in my opinion.

Being almost 80, I won't be around to see it ... but my kids (in their 40s) will.

Don't have grandkids, but for those of you who do, if you love them, start getting them trained for tough times ahead, as well.

Please.

I hope that you're having an interesting, fruitful week.

ole joyful


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RE: What's the largest U.S. export to China?

For anyone who may be interested, one of the columnists on World Net Daily focuses on buying American products. His column frequently showcases different products made in the U.S.A. and where you can purchase them. He has written a book on consumer patriotism as well. Below is a link to his archives:

Here is a link that might be useful: Simmermaker's Buy American articles


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