Beware may be a strong word, but they aren’t just answering our customer service calls anymore. They’re making our tractors and televisions.
Simpy put, other countries are besting our manufacturing capabilities because they have more affordable labor. This has been the case for years, but this trend is more obvious than ever before. And do note that we will NEVER get these jobs back. India’s workforce will work for so much less, and in many cases they do better work. Also, since America is a country built on capitalism, the machine keeps chugging along because we continue to find the means to produce our goods cheaper and cheaper. Whether we like it or not, it’s all about the bottom line, and regardless of the morality of these decisions, our corporations will continue to make them. That’s the reality.
So what now?
The answer is simple. A new push is needed in this country, and it’s as important as our push to destroy terrorism or go to the moon. However, this one should be directed towards a more advanced and robust educational system, and therefore a more intelligent workforce. Testing isn’t making our students better, but a smarter school system and better trained teachers will. And that means smaller classes and higher paid teachers. We can’t keep paying our educators poorly and expect our students to get smarter. If we’re going to apply the laws of supply and demand to the rest of our reality, we have to apply it to our educational system to. Otherwise, it will continue to get worse.
In short, there’s a new revolution happening and it’s not industrial in nature. India and China and other countries with hungry, cheap labor will destroy our manufacturing base and it’s inevitable. I’ll say that again…it IS inevitable. And they also have knowledge workers to match ours. That doesn’t mean we can’t pass them, but the only thing to do now is make our country smarter, and fast.
Are we up to the challenge? Can we best them? Will we spend the small amount of money necessary to make it happen? I certainly have my doubts, but that doesn’t mean it won’t happen. We can easily divert money from the war machine to a more savvy educational system. But that means politicians have to stand up and start saying we need a new push…and I’m certainly not holding my breath.
Let’s hope we start the push soon.