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Thread: The Post Industrial Economy

  1. #1

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    The Post Industrial Economy

    How can there be such a thing? If everything is made overseas, what mythological faith in the future makes us believe that we can do the good jobs here, with the actual industry overseas? Why? They can more cheaply do the "high end" stuff overseas, too. What future does the US economy really have?

    Heck, we can't even work for McDonalds anymore!

    Norm Augustine, former CEO of Lockheed Martin, says that even McDonald's jobs are no longer safe. Why pay an error-prone order-taker the minimum wage when McDonald's can have the order transmitted via satellite to a central location and from there to the person preparing the order. McDonald’s experiment with this system to date has cut its error rate by 50% and increased its throughput by 20 percent. Technology lets the orders be taken in India or China at costs below the minimum wage and without the liabilities of US employees.
    Of course, when the credit dries up, all the big box stores will dry up, too.

    http://www.counterpunch.org/roberts02162006.html

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Plus dandy_warhol's avatar
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    have they figured out a way to outsource the fat from a Big Mac to starving people in other countries?
    In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends. -Martin Luther King Jr.

  3. #3
    Cyburbian iamme's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by BKM
    How can there be such a thing? If everything is made overseas, what mythological faith in the future makes us believe that we can do the good jobs here, with the actual industry overseas? Why? They can more cheaply do the "high end" stuff overseas, too. What future does the US economy really have?

    http://www.counterpunch.org/roberts02162006.html
    The rate of off-shoring has been acceptable so far. Our economy has been able to absorb the loss of jobs relatively well and its helping to create new markets and opportunities for billions of people. Already China is starting to run out of readily available workers, how far is India?

    http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/english...ent_445545.htm

    The standards of living, rights, and compensation are already moving in the right direction and it can continue. However, if markets are opened up too fast, it could topple the house of cards. My qualms about this come from not using access to the US market to leverage foreign countries more but that is another conversation.

  4. #4
    Reading Kunstler this week (he has a five year prediction this time ) I have come to the conclusion to get the heck out of the southland and build a cob house in a not to remote valley surrounded by mountains. I will grow food and raise children just like the old days. Let the world sh*t its pants, I've got my seed bank and a woman who can reproduce -no pun intended.

    ok, so it's not that simple. I'm frustrated.

  5. #5
    Cyburbian The District's avatar
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    it's a misnomer. the proper reference should be something like "the post-DOMESTIC industrial economy" or something. you're right, the industry still exists, just not here.

  6. #6
    One hundred years ago the USA and Argentina were stealing agricultural jobs from Europeans. It turned out okay. This will too.

    Americans have to be competitive. If they can't compete on quality, they have to compete on price, or some point in the middle. But there's always a way to compete.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian jordanb's avatar
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    Yes, the US was just killing the European cotton growing industry.
    Reality does not conform to your ideology.
    http://neighborhoods.chicago.il.us Photographs of Life in the Neighborhoods of Chicago
    http://hafd.org/~jordanb/ Pretentious Weblog.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian AubieTurtle's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by The Irish One
    Reading Kunstler this week (he has a five year prediction this time ) I have come to the conclusion to get the heck out of the southland and build a cob house in a not to remote valley surrounded by mountains. I will grow food and raise children just like the old days. Let the world sh*t its pants, I've got my seed bank and a woman who can reproduce -no pun intended.

    ok, so it's not that simple. I'm frustrated.
    You might want to make that a very remote valley. If things start to fall apart, the starving folks in the cities will spread out over the countryside looking for food. They will certainly be armed and not care that you were smarter than them in planning ahead. They'll just kill you and take your food. Then again, if they're an organized bunch, they might just make you into a slave to grow food for them.
    As democracy is perfected, the office of president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart's desire at last and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron. - H.L. Mencken

  9. #9
    Quote Originally posted by jordanb
    Yes, the US was just killing the European cotton growing industry.
    The use of sarcastic smiley faces does not add any validity to one's argument.

  10. #10
    You might want to make that a very remote valley. If things start to fall apart, the starving folks in the cities will spread out over the countryside looking for food. They will certainly be armed and not care that you were smarter than them in planning ahead. They'll just kill you and take your food. Then again, if they're an organized bunch, they might just make you into a slave to grow food for them.
    Thanks for the tip.
    Amendment to *Plan*
    1. Move to a remote valley in the mountains
    2. Get my Pakistani mechanic in Oakland to hook me up with Talibans finest poppy seed stock
    3. Grow huge seed bank
    4. Amass weapons cash (pm El Guapo & Maister for friendly advice)
    5. Become future drug/warlord for the Irish valley in a remote part of Oregon
    6. Use my status to control traffic of people and goods
    7. Be a nice warlord
    Last edited by The Irish One; 17 Feb 2006 at 1:32 AM.

  11. #11
    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
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    We need to look at our resources. We can feed the world from North America's farmland, if we could figure out a way to control wheat and corn prices, we could lock everyone out. You don't need petrol to live, but you do need food.

    We should also look for ways to become more self sustaining in terms of energy (solar, hydro, nuclear).

    We can also figure out how to build stuff here cheaper than we can import it from elsewhere, transport costs with the high fuel prices are boun to help the north american economy.
    We hope for better things; it will arise from the ashes - Fr Gabriel Richard 1805

  12. #12
    maudit anglais
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    Timely article from today's Globe and Mail...

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servl.../Business/home

    I put way more faith in articles from "reputable" sources than BKM's links to paranoid blogs.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally posted by DetroitPlanner
    We need to look at our resources. We can feed the world from North America's farmland, if we could figure out a way to control wheat and corn prices, we could lock everyone out.
    What exactly does that mean? Why do you want to control prices?

  14. #14

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    Quote Originally posted by Tranplanner
    Timely article from today's Globe and Mail...

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servl.../Business/home

    I put way more faith in articles from "reputable" sources than BKM's links to paranoid blogs.
    Baloney.

    Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary of the Treasury during Ronald Reagan's Administration. He is a multiply published author with a PhD in Economics. Verus your typical Mainstream Media Bootlicker who does nothing but parrot Admionistration talking points?? (Judith Miller, anyone) Not so sure that a name newspaper is that much more beleivable. And, this site is a website of a published (on paper that is) magazine. I trust Alexander Cockburn (Editor)more than the New York Times.

  15. #15
    Cyburbian DetroitPlanner's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by jaws
    What exactly does that mean? Why do you want to control prices?
    Geez I don't mean in a commie pinko way... though you probably can interpet that from my graphic. I am by no means a commie, but fall into a stange mix of libretarian/liberal/conservative viewpoints.

    What I meant by controlling prices is as follows: Currently the prices are conrolled somewhat by the govt paying people NOT to grow food, or, by stockpiling it and letting it rot away.

    What I am suggesting is instead of wasting this resource, we should be exporting it. Every shipper of plastic walmart crap we get delivered to our shores should be sent back with grains or preserves to be sold to those living in areas where we are buying from.

    Many of these areas are really poor. We are paying farmers anyways to grow or not grow food, does this make sense? Surely these folks with jobs we support by buying our plastic walmart crap could afford to buy flour our strawberry jam? What price do we set this at in a way that will not cause havoc to our current farmers?
    We hope for better things; it will arise from the ashes - Fr Gabriel Richard 1805

  16. #16
    Cyburbian safege's avatar
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    Quote Originally posted by Tranplanner
    Timely article from today's Globe and Mail...

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servl.../Business/home

    I put way more faith in articles from "reputable" sources than BKM's links to paranoid blogs.
    I accept the proposition that Canada is in a better position to adapt to almost any change in the economy. We both share the scandals of free money going to the political party in power, but that's a topic for another day.

    Once the US finishes the latest round of tax rate ping pong, we still have several issues to deal with in relation to our changing economy.

    1) middle class hollowed out
    2) pensions lost
    3) education and medical have a bad (worse than government) business model (stilted)
    4) transportation is downsizing, automating, and growing
    5) government and businesses will do the same
    6) elder care is coming and no ones baked a cake

    Some of these things were ignored by government, some by business, and, in the case of education and medical, by willfull participation.
    Psychotics are consistently inconsistent. The essence of sanity is to be inconsistently inconsistent.
    -Larry Wall

  17. #17

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    Reviving the thread

    Because my favorite old-school conservative economist, Paul Craig Roberts, is putting the smack down on the lies behind mainstream economic reporting pablum.

    Counterpunch is an awesome magazine/website!

    http://www.counterpunch.org/roberts03022006.html

    Some highlights:

    Here is how to reconcile my reports with the good news you get from the mainstream media:

    (1) When the US Department of Labor, for example, releases the monthly payroll jobs data, the press release will put the best spin on the data. The focus is on the aggregate number of new jobs created the previous month, for example, 150,000 new jobs. That sounds good. News reporters report the press release. They do not look into the data to see what kinds of jobs have been created and what kinds are being lost. They do not look back in time and provide a net job creation number over a longer period of time.
    It's all spin: We can import everything, offshore everything. Because, of course, the people and insitutions running the economy benefit in the short term from these trends. Inevitable? Sure, the way our economy is structured now. Solutions? I'm just a bored bureaucrat typing away during my lunch break. There are far smarter people running, for example, the boutique economies of Europe. Maybe, again, we need to think about that old Federalism idea-a colleciton of more loosely tied city states that may be better able to find the few remaining niches not filled by the roaring Chinese economy (abetted by our capital flows)

    In debunking Lou Dobbs' concern with US jobs lost to offshore outsourcing, (ABC's John) Stossel invokes the California-based company, Collabnet. He quotes the CEO's claim that outsourcing saves his company money and lets him hire more Americans. Turning to Collabnet's web page, it is very interesting to see the employment opportunities that the company posts for the US and for India.

    In India, Collabnet has openings for 8 engineers, a sales engineer, a technical writer, and a tele-marketing representative. In the US, Collabnet has openings for one engineer, a receptionist/office assistant, and positions in marketing, sales, services, and operations. Collabnet is a perfect example of what Lou Dobbs and I report: the engineering and design jobs move abroad, and Americans are employed to sell and market the foreign made products.
    You free marketers say "so what?, this is the marketplace," etc, etc. etc. And, maybe this is indeed inevitable. But, stepping outside my role, the only role we are really allowed to play in today's society, as a "CONSUMER," forgive me while I bemoan the impoverishment of this nation.

    And, you free market militarists all had better stop foaming at the mouth about America as the world's policeman and imposing our will on everyone else, because the economy ain't there anymore. You can't have an empire without an economy.

  18. #18
    Quote Originally posted by BKM
    Here is how to reconcile my reports with the good news you get from the mainstream media:
    It goes deeper than the department of labor. Every official government economic statistic has been progressively rigged to overstate economic health. Rigging the CPI was actually a bit more nefarious in that it was necessary to prevent a collapse of social security that the value of the social security entitlement fall over time.

    Read all about it here: http://www.gillespieresearch.com/cgi-bin/bgn/

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