Remaking the dream
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After reading the Aug. 12 Forum article "Manufacturing Returns to America," I get the feeling that unemployment is not the political issue as is presented by the media. Whoever the president is, I believe he has little effect on private-sector jobs. The author makes the point that even with the competitive edge that China has with low labor cost, etc., technology will make "parts produced by humans" uncompetitive.
The dream that advanced manufacturing was supposed to provide was reduced effort and time on the part of the worker. Instead it has reduced the number of employees necessary for company operations. This, I believe, is the major factor behind the 8 percent plus unemployment number.
A century ago the typical manufacturing employee had to work 12 hours per day and six days per week. With the dramatic advances in technology that the author of the article expounds, the workday could be reduced from the standard eight hours to something lower, rather than reducing the number of employees. This would open up jobs to available workers. I know that this seems dramatic, but so was the reduction to eight hours decades ago.
First Published August 19, 2012 12:00 am