By Kean W. Stimm
I write this piece on Memorial Day as I memorialize the 30 golden years following the end of World War II, which we now call the “Golden Age.” This fantastic period effectively ended in 1975 as Japan accelerated trade with the United States. Later, the U.S. Congress approved China’s entry into the World Trade Organization and granted it permanent “most favored nation status.”
Since then our national economy plunged straight down from little debt to a national debt of $20 trillion. Personal debt has surged to $18.3 trillion and student loans are now $1.45 trillion. We went from the richest nation in the world to being essentially bankrupt.
The approval of this China bill, and its continuation to this day, illustrates how our politicians have failed to understand the basic economics of our country.
A just-published and marvelous book makes understanding easy with clear writing by James A. Stuber. It is titled, “What if Things Were Made in America Again,” and documents the incredible decline of our country due to misguided legislation by both political parties.
It should be a “must read” for everyone, especially our universities and our politicians.
We lost 6 million high-paying manufacturing jobs, and another 9 million jobs that could no longer be supported. We have a realistic estimate of 15 million people for whom there are no jobs.
They are being supported by an incredible plethora of state and federal programs that keep them afloat, and for some they are better off not working. The
government cost is enormous.
Trade legislation allowed China and other nations to export goods using cheap labor earning as little as 10 percent of the U.S. worker. American companies could not compete.
Many firms moved their businesses to China, giving them our intellectual property, know-how and special tools. They trained the Chinese, and signed a shared ownership agreement. China now sells these products to the United States. Whole industries have been decimated.
Trade is valuable to the overall prosperity of the world, but it must be balanced trade. Dramatic changes are needed as manufacturing is the source of all wealth. Unless all of us and our political parties join arms and pull together we may soon face a catastrophic financial disaster. Enough of the current childish nonsense in Washington.
Let’s fix and save the United States. Our 535 members of Congress must roll up their sleeves, lock arms and go to work – now. Each of us must write and hammer our federal representatives so we can once again buy “Made in America” and save the United States.
Kean W. Stimm is a scientist/engineer and CEO of Kean Wind Turbines Inc. in Williamsville.