Couldn't find a more recent graph but enough said.
For the past twenty years manufacturing companies have been moving their manufacturing plants out of the U.S. in droves, and during the past four years America has lost over 3 million manufacturing jobs. Most of these manufacturing jobs paid good hourly wages and had good benefits like health care, sick leave, and retirement plans. It has been these type of high wage manufacturing jobs that have helped keep a middle class in America. The Bush administration has tried to cover up these middle class job losses by getting fast-food workers reclassified as manufacturing workers.
Many of these workers have been forced to accept lower paying jobs in the service sector that offer few or no benefits. The largest employers in the U.S. are Wal-Mart and McDonalds and both of these companies are notorious for paying low wages with few benefits.
Wal-Mart recently got in trouble for hiring illegal immigrants, and most of the stuff they sell comes from China. They also are known to fight furiously against any type of worker unions.
The McDonalds restaurants around where I live are staffed almost exclusively by Mexicans, many of these Mexicans can barely speak any english. McDonalds is also a non-union company.
Both of these giant corporations are not loyal to America, and appear to only be concerned about their precious bottom lines. It is our governments job to pass tough regulations, progressive tax laws, and worker protections to keep these corporations in-line, to temper their greed, and to look out for the interest of all the American people.
The passage of NAFTA in 1994 opened the flood gates to cheaper labor in Mexico and now most of America's fortune 500 companies have set up factories and offices outside America. Bush is currently pushing to have free trade expanded into dozens of other poor countries with CAFTA. If he succeeds it will be another giant step backwards for America's workers.
Our government leaders told us that American workers would not be hurt by this outsourcing and relocations because they could be re-trained for higher paying jobs in the high tech field. However, we are now witnessing the outsourcing of our high tech jobs, and almost all other knowledge based jobs, to countries like India, China, Russia, South Africa, Eastern Europe, Costa Rica, Israel, and the Philippines.
In fact, President Bush and his administration officials are promoting the idea of outsourcing. They claim that it will be good for America's economy in the long-run even if it has some negative aspects in the short-run. They have even provided financial incentive to companies who outsource their workers to foreign countries.
Bush recently awarded a large government contract, $50 billion dollars, for homeland security computers and services to the Bahamas based Accenture corporation. He could have selected any one of a dozen or so American based companies, but for some reason he gave it to a foreign based company. Where is Bush's concern for American workers? Why is he not helping American based corporations that pay taxes in America? Its almost as if Bush is say to companies that are based in America that they are suckers for staying in America and paying all those extra taxes.
So what jobs are left for Americans to perform? Retail jobs and service jobs are being taken by the millions of new immigrants who continue to flood into America each year. The Republicans want to privatize almost all government jobs, other than their own of course. And there still is a need for face to face workers in America, but there are not enough of those jobs to go around.
It appears that the outsourcing problem can be solved in one of two ways. Either the American people must agree to take very large pay cuts, fewer benefits, and a lower standard of living, or the government must stand up for American workers by providing incentives for companies to stay in the U.S., by negotiating better trade agreements, by guaranteeing a livable wage, and by limiting the number of immigrants. Bush has already make it clear which side of the debate he is on, and his decision is costing our country large numbers of high paying job and the loss of tax revenues.
The fact that Bush supports outsourcing is not America's biggest problem, but is just one of many problems that are hurting American workers and undermining America's fiancial stability. For example, America currently has around 9 million people who need jobs. It has a poverty level minimum wage. It has a Social Security system that is going to need to be fixed. It has skyrocketing health care cost. It has shifted the tax burden onto the middle class. It has huge environmental challenges. It has a costly war being waged in Iraq. It has expensive homeland security needs. It's corporations are reincorporating off-shore to avoid paying taxes. Finally, the government is spending far more money than it is taking in resulting in a fast growing national debt.
Our country is headed for a fiscal and social train wreck and Bush has his foot on the gas.
It is time for the American people to make some demands from their government, while they are still in a position to do so. The American government works for us, but it is not serving us well. It is time to make some changes, and big government is not the problem despite what the Republicans in Congress keep telling us, but bad leadership is the problem.
This Bush administration has proven to be a huge disaster for our manufacturing base, which is key part of our national security. It is also a key part of our country's financial stability, our environment, and our government's trust and respect throughout the world.
It is now up to us to do our part to educate the rest of America about the harm Bush has done to our economy and our democracy, and to make sure we never elect leaders like him again.
Click to view image: '166066cf6f2b-manufactchart1ss.jpg'
|Liveleak on Facebook|