Mandeville, LA – On today’s show I took a call from several listeners who demanded that I retract statements made in support of Apple Computer and their manufacturing of iPads and iPhones in China. The callers demanded an outright BAN on ANY imported products not made by companies with benefits, labor and environmental laws identical to our stifling and spoiled rotten varieties.
While I understand the caller’s passion for the subject I do not understand the economic ignorance that has become so ingrained it equals what amounts to "consensus" and a dangerous consensus it is. There are no victors in a trade war only mass shortages, hoarding and market distortions that last for years and the industry or product that was originally protected becomes the ultimate victim of either insolvency or irrelevance or worse yet, confiscation of assets by a voracious goverrnment i.e. nationalized.
Below is the NY Slimes story of Apple Computer and WHY it was forced to relocate its operations to China. Read this with an open mind and you will see just what it will take to "bring back manufacturing" to the United States, here is a short list:
- Elimination of any wage laws
- Elimination of any civil rights laws effective in workplces
- Massive repeal of environmental and raw material laws and acts
- The five day-forty hour work week is a thing of the past
- "Benefits" will come in the form job security not transfers of wealth
"When Barack Obama joined Silicon Valleys top luminaries for dinner in California last February, each guest was asked to come with a question for the president. But as Steven P. Jobs of Apple spoke, President Obama interrupted with an inquiry of his own: what would it take to make iPhones in the United States?
Not long ago, Apple boasted that its products were made in America. Today, few are. Almost all of the 70 million iPhones, 30 million iPads and 59 million other products Apple sold last year were manufactured overseas.
Why cant that work come home? Mr. Obama asked.
Mr. Jobss reply was unambiguous. Those jobs arent coming back, he said, according to another dinner guest.
The presidents question touched upon a central conviction at Apple. It isnt just that workers are cheaper abroad. Rather, Apples executives believe the vast scale of overseas factories as well as the flexibility, diligence and industrial skills of foreign workers have so outpaced their American counterparts that Made in the U.S.A. is no longer a viable option for most Apple products.
Apple has become one of the best-known, most admired and most imitated companies on earth, in part through an unrelenting mastery of global operations. Last year, it earned over $400,000 in profit per employee, more than Goldman Sachs, Exxon Mobil or Google.
However, what has vexed Mr. Obama as well as economists and policy makers is that Apple and many of its high-technology peers are not nearly as avid in creating American jobs as other famous companies were in their heydays."