The Economic Collapse
February 13, 2011
Once upon a time, the United States was the greatest industrial powerhouse that the world has ever seen. Our immense economic machinery was the envy of the rest of the globe and it provided the foundation for the largest and most vibrant middle class in the history of the world. But now the once great U.S. economic machine is being dismantled piece by piece. The U.S. economy is being gutted, neutered, defanged, declawed and deindustrialized and very few of our leaders even seem to care. It was the United States that once showed the rest of the world how to mass produce televisions and automobiles and airplanes and computers, but now our industrial base is being ripped to shreds. Tens of thousands of our factories and millions of our jobs have been shipped overseas. Many of our proudest manufacturing cities have been transformed into “post-industrial” hellholes that nobody wants to live in anymore.
Meanwhile, wave after wave of shiny new factories is going up in nations such as China, India and Brazil. This is great for those countries, but for the millions of American workers that desperately needed the jobs that have been sent overseas it is not so great.
This is the legacy of globalism. Multinational corporations now have the choice whether to hire U.S. workers or to hire workers in countries where it is legal to pay slave labor wages. The “great sucking sound” that Ross Perot warned us about so long ago is actually happening, and it has left tens of millions of Americans without good jobs.
So what is to become of a nation that consumes more than it ever has and yet continues to produce less and less?
Well, the greatest debt binge in the history of the world has enabled us to maintain (and even increase) our standard of living for several decades, but all of that debt is starting to really catch up with us.
The American people seem to be very confused about what is happening to us because most of them thought that the party was going to last forever. In fact, most of them still seem convinced that our brightest economic days are still ahead.
After all, every time we have had a “recession” in the past things have always turned around and we have gone on to even greater things, right?
Well, what most Americans simply fail to understand is that we are like a car that is having its insides ripped right out. Our industrial base is being gutted right in front of our eyes.
Most Americans don’t think much about our “trade deficit”, but it is absolutely central to what is happening to our economy. Every year, we buy far, far more from the rest of the world than they buy from us.
In 2010, the U.S. trade deficit was just a whisker under $500 billion. This is money that we could have all spent inside the United States that would have supported thousands of American factories and millions of American jobs.
Instead, we sent all of those hundreds of billions of dollars overseas in exchange for a big pile of stuff that we greedily consumed. Most of that stuff we probably didn’t need anyway.
Since we spent almost $500 billion more with the rest of the world than they spent with us, at the end of the year the rest of the world was $500 billion wealthier and the American people were collectively $500 billion poorer.
That means that the collective “economic pie” that we are all dividing up is now $500 billion smaller.
Are you starting to understand why times suddenly seem so “hard” in the United States?
Meanwhile, jobs and businesses continue to fly out of the United States at a blinding pace.
This is a national crisis.
We simply cannot expect to continue to have a “great economy” if we allow our economy to be deindustrialized.
A nation that consumes far more than it produces is not going to be wealthy for long.
The following are 21 signs that the once great U.S. economy is being gutted, neutered, defanged, declawed and deindustrialized….
#1 The U.S. trade deficit with the rest of the world rose to 497.8 billion dollars in 2010. That represented a 32.8% increase from 2009.
#2 The U.S. trade deficit with China rose to an all-time record of 273.1 billion dollars in 2010. This is the largest trade deficit that one nation has had with another nation in the history of the world.
#3 The U.S. trade deficit with China in 2010 was 27 times larger than it was back in 1990.
#4 In the years since 1975, the United States had run a total trade deficit of 7.5 trillion dollars with the rest of the world.
#5 The United States spends more than 4 dollars on goods and services from China for every one dollar that China spends on goods and services from the United States.
#6 In 1959, manufacturing represented 28 percent of all U.S. economic output. In 2008, it represented only 11.5 percent and it continues to fall.
#7 The number of net jobs gained by the U.S. economy during this past decade was smaller than during any other decade since World War 2.
#8 The Bureau of Labor Statistics originally predicted that the U.S. economy would create approximately 22 million jobs during the decade of the 2000s, but it turns out that the U.S. economy only produced about 7 million jobs during that time period.
#9 Japan now manufactures about 5 million more automobiles than the United States does.
#10 China has now become the world’s largest exporter of high technology products.
#11 Manufacturing employment in the U.S. computer industry is actually lower in 2010 than it was in 1975.
#12 The United States now has 10 percent fewer “middle class jobs” than it did just ten years ago.
#13 According to Tax Notes, between 1999 and 2008 employment at the foreign affiliates of U.S. parent companies increased an astounding 30 percent to 10.1 million. During that exact same time period, U.S. employment at American multinational corporations declined 8 percent to 21.1 million.
#14 Back in 1970, 25 percent of all jobs in the United States were manufacturing jobs. Today, only 9 percent of the jobs in the United States are manufacturing jobs.
#15 Back in 1998, the United States had 25 percent of the world’s high-tech export market and China had just 10 percent. Ten years later, the United States had less than 15 percent and China’s share had soared to 20 percent.
#16 The number of Americans that have become so discouraged that they have given up searching for work completely now stands at an all-time high.
#17 Half of all American workers now earn $505 or less per week.
#18 The United States has lost a staggering 32 percent of its manufacturing jobs since the year 2000.
#19 Since 2001, over 42,000 U.S. factories have closed down for good.
#20 In 2008, 1.2 billion cellphones were sold worldwide. So how many of them were manufactured inside the United States? Zero.
#21 Ten years ago, the “employment rate” in the United States was about 64%. Since then it has been constantly declining and now the “employment rate” in the United States is only about 58%. So where did all of those jobs go?
The world is changing.
We are bleeding national wealth at a pace that is almost unimaginable.
We are literally being drained dry.
Did you know that China now has the world’s fastest train and the world’s largest high-speed rail network?
They were able to afford those things with all of the money that we have been sending them.
How do you think all of those oil barons in the Middle East became so wealthy and could build such opulent palaces?
They got rich off of all the money that we have been sending them.
Meanwhile, once great U.S. cities such as Detroit, Michigan now look like war zones.
Back in 1985, the U.S. trade deficit with China was about 6 million dollars for the entire year.
As mentioned above, the U.S. trade deficit with China for 2010 was over 273 billion dollars.
What a difference 25 years can make, eh?
What do you find when you go into a Wal-Mart, a Target or a dollar store today?
You find row after row after row of stuff made in China and in other far away countries.
It can be more than a bit difficult to find things that are actually made inside the United States anymore. In fact, there are quite a few industries that have completely and totally left the United States. For certain product categories it is now literally impossible to buy something made in America.
So what are we going to do with our tens of millions of blue collar workers?
Should we just tell them that their jobs are not ever coming back so they better learn phrases such as “Welcome to Wal-Mart” and “Would you like fries with that”?
For quite a few years, the gigantic debt bubble that we were living in kind of insulated us from feeling the effects of the deindustrialization of America.
But now the pain is starting to kick in.
It has now become soul-crushingly difficult to find a job in America today.
According to Gallup, the U.S. unemployment rate is currently 10.1% and when you throw in “underemployed” workers that figure rises to 19.6%.
Competition for jobs has become incredibly fierce and it is going to stay that way.
The great U.S. economic machine is being ripped apart and dismantled right in full view of us all.
This is not a “conservative” issue or a “liberal” issue. This is an American issue.
The United States is rapidly being turned into a “post-industrial” wasteland.
It is time to wake up America.
This article was posted: Sunday, February 13, 2011 at 9:25 am