Exactly Which Jobs is The Donald Going to ‘Bring Back From China and Mexico’???
by databob –
High up on his list of ‘I’m gonna’s’ is that he — and he alone — is going to bring jobs back from Mexico and China. Now, I’m all in favor of jobs, and I’m sure you are too, and this looks pretty good on the surface.
Like everything else from the tRump, this claim is totally free of detailed policy or process, and of course the media has been either uninterested in finding out how he’s going to do this, or unable to pin him down.
So what the hell is he talking about, and is it even possible?
First, let’s look at overall, manufacturing and IT average wages in 3 countries:*
|COUNTRY||AVG WAGE||AVG MFG WAGE||AVG IT WAGE|
Does anyone else see a problem here?
In simple terms, it costs about 4.5 times as much for the labor to build a widget in the USA than in China, and almost 9 times as much as in Mexico. And, don’t forget, the wages listed above do not include benefits like paid overtime, health care, vacations, pensions, etc., so the differences are actually greater.
This data shows quite clearly why companies are constantly moving their manufacturing operations out of the USA, and just as clearly why it will be impossible for this bloviating boor to make good on his boast.
The problem isn’t quite as bad for IT workers, but when the wage difference is expressed in multiples rather than percentages, it’s still out of reach.
What could our incipient illustrious potentate do to get companies to ‘bring jobs back from China and Mexico’?
He claims that he’s going to appoint ‘master negotiators’ like Carl Icahn to negotiate ‘better trade deals’. Yeah, that’s the same Carl Icahn who has a checkered (but financially rewarding) record as a corporate extortionist…. err, I mean raider, and no significant international business or diplomatic or trade policy experience. It also turns out that we’ve been negotiating a trade deal with China for almost 8 years and are close to getting finished. It’s hard to see how throwing the whole thing out and starting over will benefit our country, much less how we are going to try to force China to send jobs back to us…. or something.
Our dealings with Mexico are pretty well constrained by NAFTA (negotiated by Bush I and signed into law by Clinton I), which makes tRump’s threat to ‘slap a 35% tariff on every Ford manufactured in Mexico’ nothing but more hot air from the master of hot air.
Of course, there’s another ‘solution’, which he hinted at in the first debate when he said that wages are too high….. he can just lower the minimum wage to about $2/hr. Then we’ll be able to compete, for sure, and the jobs will just start rolling back across the border and the Pacific ocean.
Trump’s Nirvana, no doubt about it!
* Data was cobbled together from sources, here, here, here and here. I don’t claim this is hard, fast data as it comes from different dates and sources and methodologies, uses different exchange rates, etc.
Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos