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We always hear it, buying American keeps Americans employed. Essentially, it is false or short-sighted to say nothing is made here! For instance:
  • I needed a cellphone holder for my recently (February) purchased 2013 Cadillac XTS Premium AWD. I looked on Amazon, Target, Walmart, etc. Every single holder was inexpensive AND made in China. I happened to see that WeatherTech has cellphone holders, so I bought one from them. The raw materials were made in the USA, they were shipped to the factory by Americans, they were assembled by Americans, they were shipped out by Americans, you get the deal. Same thing for floormats, I skipped the inexpensive foreign-made ones for WeatherTech perfect-fit ones. WeatherTech also makes pet food bowls and holders, pet floor mats, seat covers, etc. Their car window vents currently are not made here, but that is one out of hundreds of products.
  • This month, my old Craftsman 19.2 volt drill battery died. I looked at batteries, not cheap. So, I looked at Home Depot's selection of updated cordless drills. The imported ones (aka 99% of them) were inexpensive. But, while scrolling, I found this Dewalt brushless cordless drill MADE IN THE USA! As a side note, "brushless" means they use magnets instead of carbon brushes, resulting in lower heat and theoretically, better reliability. I would rather spend the extra $100 and keep an American employed. Both Home Depot and Lowe's also sell appliances made in the USA, they will have that sticker on the outside.
  • For many other products, there is a site called Made In USA Forever, all made by American companies.
So, instead of simply going out and buying products made elsewhere, do your research to find what is made here.

TS
 

Brett

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At least one person says iPhones are made in America - it's about where the "value" is produced

https://www.cultofmac.com/538201/tim-cook-iphone-made-in-america

"The iPhone’s display glass, for example, comes from Kentucky, Cook said. Chips are built all over the U.S., as is equipment for manufacturing the iPhone. The FaceID module on the iPhone X is built in Texas. Plants are going up in many places.

"Apple’s vaunted supply chain consists of companies in many countries. It’s an oft-overlooked factor in Cupertino’s ability to crank out millions of high-end devices, year after year. Critics sometimes call for Apple to boost its U.S. manufacturing operations. But the fact is, your iPhone is mostly made in America already. All told, Apple works with more than 9,000 U.S. suppliers. For instance, Corning makes the glass for the iPhone display in Kentucky, for example. Chip-makers fabricate Apple processors in America. And a plant in rural Texas that produces vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers (VCSELs) for the iPhone X’s Face ID system opened with help from Apple’s $5 billion Advanced Manufacturing Fund.
 
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Rolltydr

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This may not be a popular sentiment but I don’t worry about where a product is “made”. I want the best quality product I can get for the money I have to spend. If it happens to be here in the USA, fine. I’m supporting an American manufacturer. If it happens to be made overseas, fine. I’m supporting Americans employed in the import/export sector. Either way, I’m supporting American jobs.
 

CanuckTravlr

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I, too, try to look for quality and value first, not just lowest price. But some things made elsewhere are actually the better choice. If everyone wants to choose to ignore the logical, economic, and strategic premise behind the recently concluded USMCA, and instead become narrowly protectionist, then I will obviously have to support BUY CANADIAN!! :p :D

I think it's great to want to encourage and support local industries and suppliers, but understand what it really means. As a former economics major, it is never that simple. There is always a price to be paid, whichever way you choose to go. Be prepared for $25 t-shirts, rather than complaining when they aren't 3 for $10. It's a simple example, but just one reason why manufacturing moved offshore in the first place.

It was strongly driven by consumers looking for the lowest price and companies trying to deliver that while maximizing profits. Nothing wrong with either objective, but we no longer live in a world of isolated silos. The real issue is trying to ensure that everyone is playing under at least somewhat similar rules. In an ideal world everyone produces what they are best at, on an efficient basis. However, that is a theoretical concept that is almost impossible to manage in the real world. Just sayin'. :ponder:
 
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Precisely, it is not easy to find Made In USA stuff when uber-rich CEOs send production to lower-paid countries so that the purchase price will be low AND profits will be huge. Like I said, when you buy Made In USA, you're giving people a career. But, if you buy Made In China, your money is for employing low-wage Chinese and money going to the Communist government (taxes).

TS
 

Ken555

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I, too, try to look for quality and value first, not just lowest price. But some things made elsewhere are actually the better choice. If everyone wants to choose to ignore the logical, economic, and strategic premise behind the recently concluded USMCA, and instead become narrowly protectionist, then I will obviously have to support BUY CANADIAN!! :p :D

Many of us want to buy Canadian, starting with drugs! :)


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easyrider

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So, instead of simply going out and buying products made elsewhere, do your research to find what is made here.

Pretty soon, the cheap but well made Chinese products are not going to available. I was at Lowes and Home Depot trying to find a simple plastic junction box and noticed there were none left but the nail on to stud type. Many items were not available. A contractor told me that all of the contractors are buying out inventory to stock up because it is getting harder to find. Same thing is happening to plumbing inventory.

New cars are another thing in short supply because of cheap but well made Chinese computer chips.

I kind of like buying products made in the USA but most of the low ticket items are made elsewhere. Without the low ticket item we can't make the big ticket items.

Bill
 

DaveNV

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I saw a documentary once that showed a manufacturer trying to get their products into WalMart. The takeaway was that WalMart not only demanded, but actually threatened that the manufacturer meet the price point WalMart was willing to pay, or the product would not be seen on Walmart's shelves. There was no negotiating. I think the company was General Electric. They literally forced them offshore, because they couldn't make the product in the USA and still make a profit if sold at WalMart's price point.

People like to brag up WalMart for being this All-American company, but the ugly truth is that they are in it for their own bottom line, and they don't care a whit about American companies, and American workers.

Dave
 
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I saw a documentary once that showed a manufacturer trying to get their products into WalMart.
Sears would do something similar.

They would work with a supplier and buy their product is such quantities that they would spend money to expand to meet production. Then they would strangle them on price later.
 

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I saw a documentary once that showed a manufacturer trying to get their products into WalMart. The takeaway was that WalMart not only demanded, but actually threatened that the manufacturer meet the price point WalMart was willing to pay, or the product would not be seen on Walmart's shelves. There was no negotiating. I think the company was General Electric. They literally forced them offshore, because they couldn't make the product in the USA and still make a profit if sold at WalMart's price point.

People like to brag up WalMart for being this All-American company, but the ugly truth is that they are in it for their own bottom line, and they don't care a whit about American companies, and American workers.

Dave

Maybe, but the ugly truth is Sam Walton repeatedly said he got all his ideas from Sol Price founder of FedMart and Price Club........................... and (somewhat) ... COSTCO !
And you will find similar items in Costco and Walmart including the "Kirkland" and Walmart private label brands all made by the same identical "American" companies
 
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nerodog

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I always look to see where a product is made. For example I just bought an electric tea kettle . Had choices: made in France. Portugal , Germany, China, Korea. I ended up with the German brand after researching wear and tear, price etc.
 

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I haven't purchased an American made car for about 35 years because of so many quality issues I experienced in the late 1970's and early 1980's. If the American automakers could make a car that has quality (and dependability) as a Honda or Toyota then I would buy it. At least most of the Hondas and Toyotas sold in this country are assembled in the USA.......


.
 

Patri

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I haven't purchased an American made car for about 35 years because of so many quality issues I experienced in the late 1970's and early 1980's. If the American automakers could make a car that has quality (and dependability) as a Honda or Toyota then I would buy it. At least most of the Hondas and Toyotas sold in this country are assembled in the USA.......
By random chance, the two cars I own are Honda and Toyota. :)
 

pedro47

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I saw a documentary once that showed a manufacturer trying to get their products into WalMart. The takeaway was that WalMart not only demanded, but actually threatened that the manufacturer meet the price point WalMart was willing to pay, or the product would not be seen on Walmart's shelves. There was no negotiating. I think the company was General Electric. They literally forced them offshore, because they couldn't make the product in the USA and still make a profit if sold at WalMart's price point.

People like to brag up WalMart for being this All-American company, but the ugly truth is that they are in it for their own bottom line, and they don't care a whit about American companies, and American workers.

Dave
There was a General Electric plant in Suffolk, VA many decades ago; that made televisions for Sears, J C Penny's, Montgomery Wards, and K Marts department stores.. They made an excellent quality television product; that was made in the U.S.A.

Two problems those GE televisions would last for 15 to 20 years.

Problem #2...Someone from upper GE management stated that could make the same televisions sets in the Far East for 80% less it payed their workers in the United States. GE closed the Suffolk plant and moved overseas.

This is off thr topics... The best furniture made now is from Vietnam and not from China.IMHO.
 

DaveNV

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Maybe, but the ugly truth is Sam Walton repeatedly said he got all his ideas from Sol Price founder of FedMart and Price Club........................... and (somewhat) ... COSTCO !
And you will find similar items in Costco and Walmart including the "Kirkland" and Walmart private label brands all made by the same identical "American" companies

The point of my post was that a "Made in America" company (GE) was driven offshore by a hugely American company (WalMart) because WalMart basically forced them there.

For the record: I never said Costco was a "Made in America" company. And I don't believe for a second that Sol Price had the same business model Sam Walton did. The companies are extremely different, and are run very differently. Sam Walton started WalMart in 1962. Sol Price started Price Club in 1976. Costco doesn't open a huge storefront in tiny towns and force Mom & Pop businesses into bankruptcy. WalMart does it all the time. Costco has 558 warehouses in the USA. Walmart has 4,743. People at Costco are paid a very livable wage, and have great benefits. People at WalMart are trained how to file for food stamps. The CEO of Costco earned $7.9M in total compensation in 2019. The CEO of WalMart earned $22.1M in 2019. Sam Walton may have gotten ideas of how to be a good business man from Sol Price, but he definitely took things in a very different direction.

I agree with the point in the OP: Walk into ANY national store in this country, and try to find completely Made in America products, and it's very difficult. Consumers demand lower prices, and by and large, the only way to do that is to go overseas. My post was to illustrate one example I'd seen where "Made in America" was effectively stopped.

Dave
 

am1

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Have to increase efficiency or lower wages.
 

Brett

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The point of my post was that a "Made in America" company (GE) was driven offshore by a hugely American company (WalMart) because WalMart basically forced them there.

For the record: I never said Costco was a "Made in America" company. And I don't believe for a second that Sol Price had the same business model Sam Walton did. The companies are extremely different, and are run very differently. Sam Walton started WalMart in 1962. Sol Price started Price Club in 1976. Costco doesn't open a huge storefront in tiny towns and force Mom & Pop businesses into bankruptcy. WalMart does it all the time. Costco has 558 warehouses in the USA. Walmart has 4,743. People at Costco are paid a very livable wage, and have great benefits. People at WalMart are trained how to file for food stamps. The CEO of Costco earned $7.9M in total compensation in 2019. The CEO of WalMart earned $22.1M in 2019. Sam Walton may have gotten ideas of how to be a good business man from Sol Price, but he definitely took things in a very different direction.

I agree with the point in the OP: Walk into ANY national store in this country, and try to find completely Made in America products, and it's very difficult. Consumers demand lower prices, and by and large, the only way to do that is to go overseas. My post was to illustrate one example I'd seen where "Made in America" was effectively stopped.

Dave

GE General Electric was driven offshore by Walmart?
Many manufacturers for retail products were "driven" offshore by low cost labor, lax regulations, productivity, exchange rates, cheaper materials, etc.
Costco and Walmart buy from the same suppliers, a big difference is the customer base and that results in store locations

costco.jpg
 
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Brett

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There was a General Electric plant in Suffolk, VA many decades ago; that made televisions for Sears, J C Penny's, Montgomery Wards, and K Marts department stores.. They made an excellent quality television product; that was made in the U.S.A.

Two problems those GE televisions would last for 15 to 20 years.

Problem #2...Someone from upper GE management stated that could make the same televisions sets in the Far East for 80% less it payed their workers in the United States. GE closed the Suffolk plant and moved overseas.

This is off thr topics... The best furniture made now is from Vietnam and not from China.IMHO.


I knew some of those laid-off Suffolk General Electric workers
They ended up working for Smithfield Foods and Gwaltney

Sure, GE TV's would last for 20 years but electronics technology only lasts for one year ;)
 

DrQ

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GE's problem wasn't Sears, Walmart ... et al, it was Jeffrey Immelt:
Immelt inherited a huge pension surplus
GE's pension shortfall is even more glaring when you consider that the company was sitting on a pension surplus of $14.6 billion in 2001, when Immelt replaced Jack Welch as CEO.
Then GE decided to put money into mergers and acquisitions instead of socking it away for what it owed its employees, Inch said. Many of those deals were poorly timed, contributing greatly to GE's current cash crunch.
By the end of 2008, GE's pension was running a deficit of $7 billion, and it exploded from there. Despite that shortfall, Immelt rewarded shareholders with stock buybacks, which are aimed at boosting the share price. Between 2010 and 2016, GE spent about $40 billion to buy back its own stock, according to FactSet.
"The company was debatably mismanaged," Inch said. "It didn't fund the pension properly, and now you've got a massively unfunded pension."

Immelt concentrated on raiding corporate piggy banks to boost share price (and his salary/bonus) at the expense of the business. In 2008, GE Capital got caught holding the bag when the housing bubble burst.
 

Fredflintstone

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I haven't purchased an American made car for about 35 years because of so many quality issues I experienced in the late 1970's and early 1980's. If the American automakers could make a car that has quality (and dependability) as a Honda or Toyota then I would buy it. At least most of the Hondas and Toyotas sold in this country are assembled in the USA.......


.

Totally agree. I think your key point is even when a product is made in the US, it still needs foreign ownership to ensure quality remains. That’s a sad statement isn’t it?

Being Canadian, I remember a plant that made transformers in Ontario. The company was owned by a proud Ontario family for, I think, 5 generations. They had 20,000 employees. They wanted to stay in Ontario. Sadly union demands, government demands, accusations that the family were greedy resulted in all employees getting pink slips and the family moving their business to Mexico. Yes, the employees picketed the empty plant crying “Our jobs, our jobs!”

This family said the Mexican workers got 25 percent of the salary in Ontario, were hard workers, were grateful for a job, had government support and now hire more Mexicans than they ever did in Canada! Also, they are so grateful to these employees, they give them juicy bonuses through profit sharing.

Maybe, just maybe, we need to take more pride in our work, be grateful and make businesses flourish with easy regulations.

If we keep going the entitled way, our standard of living will suffer in time.


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Totally agree. I think your key point is even when a product is made in the US, it still needs foreign ownership to ensure quality remains. That’s a sad statement isn’t it?

Being Canadian, I remember a plant that made transformers in Ontario. The company was owned by a proud Ontario family for, I think, 5 generations. They had 20,000 employees. They wanted to stay in Ontario. Sadly union demands, government demands, accusations that the family were greedy resulted in all employees getting pink slips and the family moving their business to Mexico. Yes, the employees picketed the empty plant crying “Our jobs, our jobs!”

This family said the Mexican workers got 25 percent of the salary in Ontario, were hard workers, were grateful for a job, had government support and now hire more Mexicans than they ever did in Canada! Also, they are so grateful to these employees, they give them juicy bonuses through profit sharing.

Maybe, just maybe, we need to take more pride in our work, be grateful and make businesses flourish with easy regulations.

If we keep going the entitled way, our standard of living will suffer in time.


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if it was only so easy !

But about cars, Japanese cars were more reliable but I'm not sure it's still true. (although I own both Honda and Toyota SUV's)
https://garagedreams.net/car-facts/why-are-japanese-cars-more-reliable
 

Fredflintstone

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if it was only so easy !

But about cars, Japanese cars were more reliable but I'm not sure it's still true. (although I own both Honda and Toyota SUV's)
https://garagedreams.net/car-facts/why-are-japanese-cars-more-reliable

Yup, if it was only that easy.

That’s sad too. However, the small bright spot is there are many Toyota plants in the US hiring many American Workers. The only problem is the product is Foreign owned. It almost seems it takes foreign management to ensure quality.

Yes, I have heard the quality of Toyota’s have gone down over the years. All I know is I have a basic 2007 Toyota Corolla that still runs A1 and has 203 k on it. No major repairs ever just basic maintenance. I can’t say the same for my Dodge Journey and Dakota when the 2 k repeated repairs started and I was left to flog them at 145 k and 167 k respectively.

I used to remember when I bought USA made items they were top quality. I was willing to pay more because of the pride put in the product. Now, that is gone for cheap foreign goods. Very sad. We really need to look back and assess what went wrong and craft solutions.


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