Wednesday, August 3, 2011

It's OUR Responsibility to Create USA Jobs

If I hear another person demand 'what is the government doing to create jobs?' I am going to be sick. Look in the mirror and ask YOURSELF what YOU are doing to help create and support jobs in your country.

There are 2 things that anyone can do:
  1. Start your own company. This takes some thought and is somewhat of a commitment.
  2. Buy American-made products. This is a lot less commitment and a lot less thought.
Number (2) sounds easy, but not many people are doing it. We've become this culture of buying cheap, crappy, throw-away stuff with the idea that 'we can buy another' when it breaks.

Creating USA jobs takes an attitude shift and sacrifice on multiple levels.

Big Wheel Hot Cycle, baby! Remember those?
For consumers, instead of just walking out to buy the cheap imported item, you save your money and do some research to buy the good, domestic item. This isn't always easy, and it does involve some sacrifice. Personally, I've been struggling with a big wheel bike for my 3-year old son. Do I buy the cheap China-made Diego/Dora knockoff for $50? Or do I buy a real Made in the USA original Big Wheel for $150? Boy, I WANT one of those original big wheels for my son. So, I'm going for it. We'll just tighten our belts in other ways to pay for it.

The owners of the big companies need an attitude shift, too. There needs to be a sacrifice of short-term profit for the long-term goal of getting the American economy moving again. This is the hard one. Between Wall Street's pressure to have high profits, and the allure of a $1million bonus check if you do a good job, only certain C-level folks are willing and able to make the long-term investment.

What can we do as consumers to 'encourage' companies to make this investment?

Hurrah for New Balance!
First, support the companies that are already keeping their manufacturing in the USA. They NEED our support. Take the example of New Balance shoes. New Balance is the last major athletic shoe brand to manufacture footwear in the United States. They are struggling with foreign competition and free trade agreements that give the advantage to manufacturers from the outside. If you want to help support jobs, support companies like these!

Second, contact the companies that aren't manufacturing in the USA and complain. Especially the ones that used to do it. E-mails or letters are best because they are written correspondence. Express your frustration that more of their products aren't still made here. Tell them that you'll be taking your business elsewhere if they don't come back to the US.

Imagine what would happen if even one quarter of us here in the USA did this; I bet a lot of companies would come back in a hurry. Why don't we try and find out?

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