devonshire wrote:How many here own products made by companies that do exactly what this discussion is about? How many buy the more expensive domestic made product (if there is one)?
How many of us design products that will be replaced in a year or two?
How many folks here ditched their 3G phone for a 4G?
I used to think that if you did not employ the people who might actually buy your product, no one would be able to buy it. Yes they will. In west Michigan Electrolux left a plant in a small town. What an uproar it caused. They still sell that brand at the Mejiers and Wal-Mart, so locals are still buying them.
Curtis-Mathis was the last US TV manufacturer, high quality sets, no one bought them, instead we all bought the inexpensive TV.
Although I would rather have everything made here in the US, so every penny stays in the US, I am the minority. People want the new cheap thing, big companies know it, and do whatever they can to get your money out of your pocket, because they know the 99% wants the latest thing, and could care less where it is made.
Design departments exist to fulfill that end need. We are promoting all the things we see wrong, except in rare cases.
We recognize the problem, what would you suggest is done? Will you make that first step? No new computer until yours actually burns out? Fewer software upgrades? A phone that is more than 3 years old? One pair of shoes for all seasons? No toys for your pets? The less you buy from those companies and the more you buy from the US companies is the only thing that will change the market.
I doubt China will turn away all the money of the offshore markets, they will always go where the money goes.
Perhaps Made in America actually means made here, to a specific design principle, for a specific reason.
Nothing wrong with that.
Many people will gladly pay high price for products made in USA/Europe if those products carry a famous brand name and values. Take Ferrari for example, a recession-proof company that actually has to limit production to maintain brand status.
I know this example was from a niche market, but this might actually be the way to go for US and EU based companys.
Like someone said earlier, 200 factories with 100 employees each instead of 1 megafactory with 10k staff.
Trying to compete with Asia in mainstream markets where number one USP is price is nonsense.
Apple just combines both elements. Hipster design savy approach combined with cheap mass production.
There are other cheaper alternatives out there but they have still managed to achieve incredible success.