A Reminder

by Dave Schuler on August 31, 2014

Manufacturing output in the United States has not crashed:
I think that this remark by the author:

As a former auto engineer who saw millions of jobs lost and trillions of dollars washed down the drain, this really delights me. When I was an EDN editor I attended a presentation by Beacon Economics. This outfit was started by Chris Thornberg, the UCLA professor that predicted the 2007 housing crash in 2006. It was at this presentation that I learned that US manufacturing has never crashed, as many people popularly believe. Indeed, in dollar terms the output of US manufacturing has been on a pretty steady upward march.

It is manufacturing employment in the United States that has crashed.

What has declined is US manufacturing employment.

This is because computers and automation and robots have greatly increased the productivity of the American worker.

is incomplete. I do not think you can adequately discuss manufacturing employment in the United States without mentioning trade, monetary, environmental, or tax policy.

Addditionally, I have no problem with our as a society deciding and saying that “we don’t want more dirty, smelly, energy-intensive, polluting manufacturing in the United States”. I think that saying “we don’t want more dirty, smelly, energy-intensive, polluting manufacturing employment in the United States” without providing an alternative is immoral.

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Andy August 31, 2014 at 2:43 am

How about “I don’t want more dirty, smelly, energy-intensive, polluting manufacturing in the United States near me?”

Dave Schuler August 31, 2014 at 2:51 am

Yes, NIMBY we shall always have with us.

steve August 31, 2014 at 6:30 am

A lot of areas are competing (giving tax breaks) to get those smelly places to come to their area. I think the pollution and energy issue is a minor one, with a few NIMBY areas, at least as far as manufacturing goes.

Steve

jan August 31, 2014 at 12:57 pm

RTW states are where most businesses are going. Why hassle with overbearing regulations, taxation and the strong, irrational arm of big unions when you are welcomed elsewhere?

... August 31, 2014 at 6:20 pm

What jobs can realistically replace manufacturing jobs and still maintain the standard of living those jobs provided for those that sought that kind of work?

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