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I don't even know what to say to those who are down on American manufacturing. Usually they shoot for the Auto industry or American made vehicles as easy, broad targets not really considering that most American manufacturing companies are small outfits owned by smart, upstanding individuals who are very concerned with quality because...frankly...if they aren't, they're dead. Dead. Gone.

Just...look...if you have an instinct to berate American manufacturing, cleanse your mind of cars. Americans make WAY more than cars.

We make stainless steel science lab tables, we make glass bottles, we make fishing reels, we make office furniture. We make mason jars, rubber stamps, energy saving windows, model rockets, glue, nails, toys, paper, books, cardboard boxes, nail polish, fish food, springs, dry wall, doors, popcorn, machines that churn out windmill cookies...Americans make all sorts of things. And we do it well. And we even export.

Most manufacturers in America are small, independently owned businesses.

Look around you for a minute. Everything around you from the light bulbs made in Wyandotte, MI, to the windows made in Pella, IA to the beer bottles made in Chicago, Illinois or the beer itself made in Wisconsin or Nevada or New York, to your chair made in Grand Rapids, MI...everything...EVERYTHING was manufacatured.

The Bic pens, the envelopes with the plastic windows, the copper wiring in your computer mouse, the shoelaces on your shoe, the carpet or vinyl flooring or wood you walk on, the frickin' acrylic paint, and the light switches, and the flatware you eat with and the plates and salt shakers, and the salt itself, and the door knobs, and the locks and keys, and keychains, and the bottle caps, and your wal calendar, and the window dressings, and white boards, and the Precious Moments figurines, and the cereal boxes, and the cereal, and the ink for printing the colorful cereal boxes, and the little steel floor guard things on the bottom of wooden chair legs, and the decal letters on the damn computer keyboard, and the screws and glue and tape and paper and plastic caps and the batteries and glass tungsten filaments and picture frames and packaging...

EVERYTHING was MADE by SOMEBODY, usually in some very small business.

And a LOT of it, if not most of it near you, was made here in the United States by some small company with a handful of employees who work their asses off in a crazy competitive world where CHEAP is the name of the game.

You're buying mostly American and you don't even know it.

Ever wonder why the trade deficit FALLS during a shitty economy?

That's because MOST the stuff made OUTSIDE the United States is the Shit You Don't Need. Most of the stuff made OUTSIDE the United States is shit that has a huge CO2 footprint from crossing the Pacific and the rest of the North American just so you can have a cheap Bic pen when you need it or a 99 cent, one time use paint brush.

Americans make all sorts of things that serve you well day and night, so much so you don't even notice it.

Your city manufactures something.

What does your city manufacture?

Originally posted to Muskegon Critic on Sun Aug 02, 2009 at 07:47 PM PDT.

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