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  1. #1
    The White Jeff W
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    The end of cheap labor in China?

    I figured it would just be a matter of time before the labor force there got tired of breaking their backs in sweatshops for pennies

    "The time of low costs and cheap labour in China has come to an end," said Jay Huang, chief financial officer of Taiwan's Wintek (2384.TW), a maker of touch panels for Apple and other brands with annual revenues last year of some $3 billion.

    "People think the market should offer cheap products; in the past they came at the cost of cheap labour in China and workers' rest time and welfare. But now we all agree that things have to improve, and as an ethical manufacturer we must improve the welfare of employees."
    Low cost era over for China's workshops to the world - Hindustan Times
    No moss...

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeffw-13 View Post
    I figured it would just be a matter of time before the labor force there got tired of breaking their backs in sweatshops for pennies



    Low cost era over for China's workshops to the world - Hindustan Times
    Just following a pattern that has been demonstrated in all the other prior sources of cheap labor that have been used and abused for decades around the Pacific Rim. Once people start to realise that they are being exploited such as they have been: they see people driving new cars, wearing new clothes, having leisure time etc. they want some too. As the middle class develops, labor costs increase, and profit margins decrease. That's only logical Captain!
    It's all Here. Now.

  3. #3
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    Good. Now we can get back to making quality stuff in the USA that doesn't kill the environment. I'm certainly willing to pay extra for that!

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by RaveOn View Post
    Good. Now we can get back to making quality stuff in the USA that doesn't kill the environment. I'm certainly willing to pay extra for that!
    Thats not going to happen for a couple reasons.
    You are in a small minority of the American society. Clearly, the vast majority does not care about how things are made, just the cost. If the cost rises significantly, the consumers will simply seek out lower cost alternatives.
    The corporations that manufacture the goods overseas will seek out other sources of low cost labor. They are not going to hurt their own profits simply for the 'feel-goodism' of Made In America.
    The current political climate in America is hostile towards manufacturing.
    Enviromental policies make it nearly impossible to make the products domestically. Manufacturers can not build new factories. A combinations of enviromental policies. If they do get a new factory built, they are heavily policed in regards to the enviromental emissions from those factories.
    Labor laws and unions raise costs and reduce productivity.
    Its all Shits and Giggles until somebody Giggles and Shits

  5. #5
    AZ
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    There is a small but developing trend for jobs returning to the U.S.

    Outsourced jobs return to the USA ~ what IS working

  6. #6
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    Brewtality,

    All you said is true. We have a Harbor Freight Tool outlet near me and I'm always amazed how packed they are (and those dollar stores) with people buying (disposable) tools. 99.9% of those items are made in china.


  7. #7
    REALLY?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brewtality View Post
    Thats not going to happen for a couple reasons.
    You are in a small minority of the American society. Clearly, the vast majority does not care about how things are made, just the cost. If the cost rises significantly, the consumers will simply seek out lower cost alternatives.
    The corporations that manufacture the goods overseas will seek out other sources of low cost labor. They are not going to hurt their own profits simply for the 'feel-goodism' of Made In America.
    The current political climate in America is hostile towards manufacturing.
    Enviromental policies make it nearly impossible to make the products domestically. Manufacturers can not build new factories. A combinations of enviromental policies. If they do get a new factory built, they are heavily policed in regards to the enviromental emissions from those factories.
    Labor laws and unions raise costs and reduce productivity.

    I hate to agree with you, but, unfortunaly I do...
    DJ, "Because I'm sure the world need's more dudes stalking the woods stoned out of their mind carrying a deadly weapon."

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brewtality View Post
    Thats not going to happen for a couple reasons.
    You are in a small minority of the American society. Clearly, the vast majority does not care about how things are made, just the cost. If the cost rises significantly, the consumers will simply seek out lower cost alternatives.
    The corporations that manufacture the goods overseas will seek out other sources of low cost labor. They are not going to hurt their own profits simply for the 'feel-goodism' of Made In America.
    The current political climate in America is hostile towards manufacturing.
    Enviromental policies make it nearly impossible to make the products domestically. Manufacturers can not build new factories. A combinations of enviromental policies. If they do get a new factory built, they are heavily policed in regards to the enviromental emissions from those factories.
    Labor laws and unions raise costs and reduce productivity.
    I have to disagree with you. I think that most people do care about where things are made, and given the choice would shop with considerations other than cost. The problem is that politicians catering to business interests set the rules to satisfy those interests and not those of the consumer.

    Your statement that "America is hostile to manufacturing" is not accurate. Environmental and labor laws in the united States are just fine as they are. What is in need of improvement is trade rules that allow anything to be imported regardless of labor and environmental laws in the place where they were manufactured.

    If there was a level playing field, Americans could compete with any exporter, including China. That is not likely to happen though, as American manufacturers are content to outsource American jobs. They do so knowing that politicians will do nothing to prevent them from taking advantage of non existent labor and environmental laws in those jurisdictions.

    Do you really want the United States to become more like China in regards to labor and environmental regulations?

    Are we actually having a political discussion here on Off Camber?

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by nebelwerfer42 View Post
    Do you really want the United States to become more like China in regards to labor and environmental regulations?
    Yes and no. We need to ease restrictions on manufacturers to make things easier here. Enviromental, financial and labor policies all need adjustment before we will see manufacturing return.

    Are we actually having a political discussion here on Off Camber?
    SSSHHHH!!! Keep that language quiet. You don't want Chum to hear that.
    No. Not at all. Nothing political here at all.
    Its all Shits and Giggles until somebody Giggles and Shits

  10. #10
    clown question, bro
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brewtality View Post
    Yes and no. We need to ease restrictions on manufacturers to make things easier here. Enviromental, financial and labor policies all need adjustment before we will see manufacturing return.
    No and no. Nobody wins in a race to the bottom.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ilikebmx999 View Post
    Are we just ignoring balls? Lol

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    Quote Originally Posted by zeppy View Post
    No and no. Nobody wins in a race to the bottom.
    Exactly.

    What we need is legislation that raises the cost of imports from places that compete in an unfair way. Once they are in place then manufacturing will return, as will employment. Don't expect American politicians to make that happen anytime soon, since they cater to the business interests that finance them.

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by nebelwerfer42 View Post
    Exactly.

    What we need is legislation that raises the cost of imports from places that compete in an unfair way. Once they are in place then manufacturing will return, as will employment. Don't expect American politicians to make that happen anytime soon, since they cater to the business interests that finance them.
    For "places that compete in an unfair way", don't you mean "places that are exploited by business interests over here to line the pockets of a few"...? Does the name Foxconn mean anything to you? As long as there is cheap labor somewhere else, that is where we will get our manufactured goods...
    It's all Here. Now.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockerc View Post
    As long as there is cheap labor somewhere else, that is where we will get our manufactured goods...
    Exactly.
    If labor costs in China go up, then the manufacturers will go somewhere else.
    Vietnam, Cambodia, Philipines, Malaysia, India,.... to name just a few. Large available work forces. Low wages. Low enviromental standards. All makes it very easy for businesses to move in.
    We don't need further restrictions from the government on businesses (in the name of import tarrifs). That will only further stifle our already weak economy. If we ease some of the current restrictions on manufacturers, some will start trickling back.
    I am not talking about allowing businesses rape and pilage our land and water. Nobody wants that. Nor am I suggesting we should have American workers working for pennies. But there is much that can be done to streamline how business is conducted in the US.
    How many of you have attempted to build a large industrial building, such as a factory?
    I was lucky enough to get to help out at my last company when we built and moved into a new shop facility (heavy over the road truck dealership). We had to jump through hoops set in front of us by federal, state, county and city policies. Many of those ordinances were contridictory to each other. If we obeyed one standard, then we were in violation of the standards of the other three entities. We had to battle for three years, just to get approval to break ground!! Pissing matches with EPA, OSHA and construction labor unions all needlessly delayed construction.
    I can only imagine what a major conpany must go through to open a large manufacturing facility. Our problems, magnified 100x. Of course manufacturers are going to go overseas. No EPA or OSHA watching over their shoulders. No labor unions telling the workers to slow down or stop working altogether.
    Its all Shits and Giggles until somebody Giggles and Shits

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by rockerc View Post
    As long as there is cheap labor somewhere else, that is where we will get our manufactured goods...
    Not necessarily. With appropriate protections in place imported goods could be made more expensive so that competition is fair. Whether the brand name is a domestic or a foreign one is not important. What matters is how it is manufactured, not where the controlling entity is located.

    Importers should be able to demonstrate a supply chain that is free from exploitive business practices if they manufacture in low cost locations. If not, then a tariif or duty should be applied to goods manufactured in places where there are generally poor standards of protection for labor, environmental, and intellectual property rights.

    It seems as if people have forgotten that the free market is not a politically neutral mechanism for production. It is in fact heavily influenced by conservative political assumptions. These underlying attitudes are fundamentally undemocratic(anti democratic in fact).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brewtality View Post
    Exactly.
    If labor costs in China go up, then the manufacturers will go somewhere else.
    Vietnam, Cambodia, Philipines, Malaysia, India,.... to name just a few. Large available work forces. Low wages. Low enviromental standards. All makes it very easy for businesses to move in.
    We don't need further restrictions from the government on businesses (in the name of import tarrifs). That will only further stifle our already weak economy. If we ease some of the current restrictions on manufacturers, some will start trickling back.
    I am not talking about allowing businesses rape and pilage our land and water. Nobody wants that. Nor am I suggesting we should have American workers working for pennies. But there is much that can be done to streamline how business is conducted in the US.
    How many of you have attempted to build a large industrial building, such as a factory?
    I was lucky enough to get to help out at my last company when we built and moved into a new shop facility (heavy over the road truck dealership). We had to jump through hoops set in front of us by federal, state, county and city policies. Many of those ordinances were contridictory to each other. If we obeyed one standard, then we were in violation of the standards of the other three entities. We had to battle for three years, just to get approval to break ground!! Pissing matches with EPA, OSHA and construction labor unions all needlessly delayed construction.
    I can only imagine what a major conpany must go through to open a large manufacturing facility. Our problems, magnified 100x. Of course manufacturers are going to go overseas. No EPA or OSHA watching over their shoulders. No labor unions telling the workers to slow down or stop working altogether.
    I am not saying that regulations could not be rationalized. There is always room for improvement.

    Let's keep one thing in mind during this discussion. Laws are(supposedly) designed to benefit all members of society, not just those who have investment capital to more around in search of the highest return. Letting manufacturers outsource to low cost locations is a fundamental error. They are eroding the manufacturing base at home. More importantly, they are undermining the local economy. Soon enough nobody will have to go to a place where third world conditions exist, because those conditions will exists right here in North America.

    Is that what you want?

  16. #16
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    Good job!

    Quote Originally Posted by Brewtality View Post
    Exactly.
    If labor costs in China go up, then the manufacturers will go somewhere else.
    Vietnam, Cambodia, Philipines, Malaysia, India,.... to name just a few. Large available work forces. Low wages. Low enviromental standards. All makes it very easy for businesses to move in.
    We don't need further restrictions from the government on businesses (in the name of import tarrifs). That will only further stifle our already weak economy. If we ease some of the current restrictions on manufacturers, some will start trickling back.
    I am not talking about allowing businesses rape and pilage our land and water. Nobody wants that. Nor am I suggesting we should have American workers working for pennies. But there is much that can be done to streamline how business is conducted in the US.
    How many of you have attempted to build a large industrial building, such as a factory?
    I was lucky enough to get to help out at my last company when we built and moved into a new shop facility (heavy over the road truck dealership). We had to jump through hoops set in front of us by federal, state, county and city policies. Many of those ordinances were contridictory to each other. If we obeyed one standard, then we were in violation of the standards of the other three entities. We had to battle for three years, just to get approval to break ground!! Pissing matches with EPA, OSHA and construction labor unions all needlessly delayed construction.
    I can only imagine what a major conpany must go through to open a large manufacturing facility. Our problems, magnified 100x. Of course manufacturers are going to go overseas. No EPA or OSHA watching over their shoulders. No labor unions telling the workers to slow down or stop working altogether.
    You are absolutely correct that gov has made doing business in America way to expensive.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by nebelwerfer42 View Post
    Not necessarily. With appropriate protections in place imported goods could be made more expensive so that competition is fair. Whether the brand name is a domestic or a foreign one is not important. What matters is how it is manufactured, not where the controlling entity is located.

    Importers should be able to demonstrate a supply chain that is free from exploitive business practices if they manufacture in low cost locations. If not, then a tariif or duty should be applied to goods manufactured in places where there are generally poor standards of protection for labor, environmental, and intellectual property rights.

    It seems as if people have forgotten that the free market is not a politically neutral mechanism for production. It is in fact heavily influenced by conservative political assumptions. These underlying attitudes are fundamentally undemocratic(anti democratic in fact).
    I am afraid that I do not subscribe to the protectionist arguments you propose. I believe that the benefits of such practices might be beneficial to a few in the shorter term, but generally speaking do nothing more than contribute to globally uncompetitive businesses in the longer term, and to an increasingly unhealthy isolationism. The US is part of the Global Village, like it or not, and must find ways to remain competitive in that global economy on equal terms. Cheaper labor will eventually become that much harder for anyone to find as standards of living increase generally, then we are all in the same boat, and will have to sink or swim...
    It's all Here. Now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by rockerc View Post
    I am afraid that I do not subscribe to the protectionist arguments you propose. I believe that the benefits of such practices might be beneficial to a few in the shorter term, but generally speaking do nothing more than contribute to globally uncompetitive businesses in the longer term, and to an increasingly unhealthy isolationism. The US is part of the Global Village, like it or not, and must find ways to remain competitive in that global economy on equal terms. Cheaper labor will eventually become that much harder for anyone to find as standards of living increase generally, then we are all in the same boat, and will have to sink or swim...
    Is keeping global business competitive the ultimate goal of domestic economic policy? I don't think so. The need to keep business competitive globally has to be balanced against the need to keep the domestic economy strong. Sending skills overseas does not benefit the domestic economy, particularly in the long run. Less developed countries can find their way to full development without massive assistance from the developed ones. Why should people in the developed countries have to suffer with severe economic dislocation just to keep business "competitive"?

  19. #19
    tl1
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    What?

    Quote Originally Posted by Brewtality View Post
    Labor laws and unions raise costs and reduce productivity.
    Which is why the USA had its most productive and prosperous years following massive labor reforms I suppose.

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    Another FDR is needed. Obama ain't him.

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