Tuesday, January 31, 2012
Marco Rubio already at work to overturn the administration’s contraception mandate « Hot Air: We’ve reached a new low when a senator has to present a bill to restore religious freedom — but at least we still have a senator who will introduce such legislation in the face of an overt trampling of the right to free exercise of religion. Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio today will introduce “The Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 2012,” a bill that would reverse the Obama administration’s recent confirmation of its decision to force religious employers — in conflict with their religious beliefs — to provide employees with insurance that would cover contraceptives and abortifacients.
Saturday, January 28, 2012
Friday, January 27, 2012
America’s Dirty War Against Manufacturing (Part 1): Carl Pope - Bloomberg
“I’d love to make this product in America. But I’m afraid I won’t be able to.”
My host, a NASA engineer turned Silicon Valley entrepreneur, has just conducted a fascinating tour of his new clean-energy bench-scale test facility. It’s one of the Valley’s hottest clean-technology startups. And he’s already thinking of going abroad.
“Wages?” I ask.
His dark eyebrows arch as if I were clueless, then he explains the reality of running a fab -- an electronics fabrication factory. “Wages have nothing to do with it. The total wage burden in a fab is 10 percent. When I move a fab to Asia, I might lose 10 percent of my product just in theft.”
I’m startled. “So what is it?”
“Everything else. Taxes, infrastructure, workforce training, permits, health care. The last company that proposed a fab on Long Island went to Taiwan because they were told that in a drought their water supply would be in the queue after the golf courses.”
So begins my education on the hollowing-out of the American economy, which might be titled: “It’s not the wages, stupid.”
Manufacturing’s share of U.S. employment peaked in 1979 and has since fallen by almost half. Although manufacturing has been a relative bright spot in the dismal economy of the past couple of years, in the last decade, the U.S. lost a third of its manufacturing jobs, with the damage rippling far beyond that base to erode millions of jobs that are dependent on it.