Glenwood Springs, CO Colorado
This is in response to Mr. Charlie Jacobson’s letter published June 9 about only purchasing American made products.
A recent article written by the financial experts at MSN Money addressed this very topic and wrote, “If all Americans made the decision to only purchase American-made products, there would be an immediate decrease in our standard of living that would only continue to worsen until this country had a total economic failure.”
If you are going to only purchase American-made products, does that mean you are willing to give up pretty much all of your small appliances, telephones, cell phones, electronics, etc.? Even those products that are made here rely on imported materials and parts from foreign countries.
The U.S. economy relies heavily on global trade. Just imagine what would happen if all countries adopted that thought process and decided not to buy our products. This great country has never been self sufficient and has always relied on global trade, even back in the 1700s and 1800s when our major exports were tobacco and then cotton.
As for only purchasing American-made vehicles, is there really such a thing anymore and which ones were Mr. Jacobson referring to? U.S. auto manufacturers are getting a lot of their parts and materials from foreign countries and even having some of those countries perform the assembly.
So, while our automakers are outsourcing jobs to foreign countries, companies like Toyota, Nissan and Subaru are building auto assembly plants here. Toyota manufacturing alone employs approximately 81,000 Americans. Add Nissan and Subaru, and then all of the employees that work at those dealerships, and you are talking about hundreds of thousands of U.S. citizens who are earning their income from the purchase of the above mentioned brands.
So, you see, if you were to only purchase American-made products produced only from materials that originated here, your choices would be very limited. Many products you would simply have to learn to live without. If too many people adopted this thought process, this great country would quickly be reduced to a Third World status.
“I thought I should buy American,” says my neighbor, standing next to his new Ford Fusion with me standing next to my Subaru.
“That’s cool,” I chide back. “Do you know where your car was built?”
Chagrined, he replies, “Mexico.”
“That’s pretty funny, my Subaru was built in Indiana.”
So many times I see these rants about buying American vehicles and it makes me wonder, just how many of these “economic patriots” paid foreigners to make their precious “American” car?
The web savvy need look no further than the Cars.com American-Made Index. Hold on to your belt buckle Bubba, here comes an eye opener.
The No. 1 on the American-made index is currently the Toyota Camry, followed by the Honda Accord. Of course a couple Fords made the top-10, along with one Chevy, one Dodge and one Jeep.
But half of the top-10 American made vehicles are Toyota (with three vehicles) and Honda (with two vehicles). Bubba’s F-150 didn’t even make it this year. The index is based on a number of factors, including where the parts come from and how many Americans are employed building these cars.
For those of you shy of the Internet, just go look at the first character in your vehicle’s VIN. If it starts with a 1, 4 or 5, your car was built in the good ol’ USA. No. 2 means it was built in Canada, 3’s are built in Mexico. J-R come from Asia, S-Z come from Europe. More specifics can be found online.
The bottom line is the lines are blurred. Blurred by movement. The only way to keep up in a global economy is to educate yourself, constantly and for the rest of your life.
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