Scott PaulAlliance for American Manufacturing
The United States has lost more than a third of its manufacturing jobs, 5.73 million, in the last decade. Left behind have been empty factories, towns coping with depleted tax revenues, and families struggling to survive. Yet rarely in the public discussion of the economy or the nation’s struggle to remain solvent does the subject come up of the need to bring manufacturing back home.
Behind the mainstream headlines, however, a movement is afoot to convince American consumers, business owners and politicians that bringing manufacturing back to the United States would, ultimately, be the solution to the nation’s economic woes, even if it meant higher prices for goods currently being make more cheaply overseas.
BusinessNewsDaily asked five heavy hitters – an investor, an author, a manufacturer and two thought leaders – to explain how manufacturing could play a big role in saving the American economy.
The loss of manufacturing jobs to overseas sites means the loss of job opportunities for middle-class Americans, according to Scott Paul, executive director of the Alliance for American Manufacturing.
"The downside of losing manufacturing jobs is that it puts a strain on families that reduces their quality of life," Paul said. "It puts more of a demand on public services and decreases [tax] revenue coming into local and state governments."
Though there are major companies, like McDonaldâs , that are hiring thousands of new workers, Paul said those aren’t the types of jobs that will really help the economy.
"We are not going to build an economy by flipping Big Macs," Paul told BusinessNewsDaily. "We need a diverse economy."
Paul believes the U.S. needs to look outside its borders to countries like Germany that are providing incentives for businesses to manufacture there.
"They are investing in skills and innovation," he said of the Germans. "There is a premium placed on having a strong manufacturing sector."
Paul believes consumers want to support American manufacturers, and he points to the positive reaction Chrysler received for its “Made in Detroit” commercial that aired during this year’s Super Bowl.
"The response that Chrysler got shows it is clearly something that is appealing to people," Paul said.