Friday, October 10, 2008

It is Friday, my classes at school are done for the week and once again, it is my day to compete with the Chinese. The markets around the world appear to be in a state of meltdown, and investors are left wondering why. The US Congress will have hearings to investigate and a craftsman in Arkansas might have just a bit of insight that might be useful to a few and ignored by most.

Years ago I made a sales trip to one of the Big Merchandise Marts in Dallas Texas, and I was surprised to find that nearly every thing sold was imported. Nothing, nothing at all was made in the US anymore. Then a few years later, Walmart did a major advertising blitz, showcasing all the things they sold that were made in the USA, but they put so much pressure on those manufacturers to cheapen the quality and price of those goods, that many of the companies went out of business. Now, Walmart would have some real difficulties finding American companies to showcase in a promotion.

Is there a link between the decline of manufacturing in America and the current state of our economy? You tell me. What do you think? I am going to go back to making boxes. You take some materials, add some labor of your very own. Pay the bills so you have a place to keep your tools, and with some care and attention, you make things that may be useful to others and perhaps even add beauty to humdrum lives. If the economy is strong, you sell them and get what you need to keep going. If the economy falls and fails, at least you have skills left that can be diverted to help your family and community survive.

The photo above shows boxes recently assembled and parts waiting their turn.

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