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Manufacturing a Better Future for America Paperback – July 13, 2009


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Alliance for American Manufacturing; First edition (July 13, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0615288197
  • ISBN-13: 978-0615288192
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 5.9 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,336,091 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

At a time when U.S. manufacturing jobs are disappearing and the United States is losing both its competitive standing and industrial base, it's important to find both positive discussion and clear-cut goals to help restore U.S. industry. 'Manufacturing a Better Future for America' provides both-- an insightful discussion of the state of 21st Century U.S. manufacturing and the need to strengthen the manufacturing sector to meet new challenges. --Harley Shaiken, Director, Center for Latin American Studies and noted expert on global economic integration

Getting trade policy right will be an important battle for 21st Century America. We've seen the ongoing erosion of our manufacturing base and the millions of good-paying jobs that have been lost. We can't continue down this path. I'm gratified to see 'Manufacturing a Better Future for America' tackle these weighty issues head-on, and I congratulate the authors on their good work. --Richard Dick Gephardt, Former Majority Leader, U.S. House of Representatives

The authors of Manufacturing a Better Future for America thoroughly explode the myth all too prevalent in Washington these days that there can be an economic recovery of any consequence without a strategy for revitalizing American manufacturing. --Nicholas von Hoffman

About the Author

Richard McCormack, editor, Manufacturing and Technology News.

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Customer Reviews

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A very thorough read.
L. Stevenson
It's a comprehensive look at the most productive and innovative sector of our economy--manufacturing--and busts prevailing myths about the industry.
Scott N. Paul
This book is extremely informative on an urgent topic.
Steury

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Scott N. Paul on July 14, 2009
Format: Paperback
Manufacturing a Better Future for America is essential reading for anyone who wants to understand why our economy is in such a sorry state right now. It's a comprehensive look at the most productive and innovative sector of our economy--manufacturing--and busts prevailing myths about the industry. Nine essays written by leading thinkers on manufacturing provide a 360-degree view of how we got where we are today, and why it's essential to revitalize the manufacturing base. With unemployment so high, skyrocketing debt, state budgets in collapse, and tough times for nearly everyone, it's important to understand why the engine of our economy has sputtered. There are insightful and brief essays on topics that include international trade, skills and training, innovation, the social costs of deindustrialization, the intersection of manufacturing and national security, industrial policies in nations that compete with us, and the globalization of supply chains. Highly readable, you'll come away knowing that manufacturing has to be part of our future, and not just part of our past.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Scott Treibitz on July 21, 2009
Format: Paperback
This book is just what we need. America needs to be reminded that manufacturing is what built our economy so many years ago, and that we should look to it once more to drag us out of the economic mess our country is facing.

Furthermore, the economic mindset of our government and our business leaders needs to be shifted. The practice of offshoring production has rendered millions of Americans jobless and angry.

The power to revitalize the American economy must come from its people and its people alone.

This book justifies why jobs need to stay on American soil, and how a paradigm shift in business economics is needed to prevent this recession from repeating itself. All in all, I highly recommend this book to anyone who is willing to help bandage up our broken economy.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Hazel Henderson on February 5, 2010
Format: Paperback
One of the most important books of the past two decades. This is the first, most comprehensive study of the social costs of the loss of the manufacturing sector to the US economy since the process of globalization went into high gear in the mid 1980s. The deregulation, "free trade," open borders and privatization policies pursued by President Reagan and Prime Minister Thatcher in the UK led to today's global financial casino and all the woes it helped cause in the series of financial crises culminating in the Wall Street debacle of 2008. Hidden and overlooked by obsolete statistics in the US government, the lobbying of global corporations and their "free trade" economists is the tragedy of this unnecessary loss of domestic production. This hollowing out of the USA and the resulting loss of millions of high-paying manufacturing jobs to China, Mexico, India and other low-wage countries is documented in painful, shocking detail.

For 20 years, I have pointed to reasons the USA has experienced "jobless growth" - rooted in the abstractions of macroeconomics theories and methods. The faith in "free trade" has prevented government agencies from making use of futurists' broader forecasting and planning methods used by most global corporations. Their economic advisors' market fundamentalism warned against "industrial policy" except for that covertly practiced by the Department of Defense and activities in the name of "national security." Thus, the "hollowing out" of US manufacturing has continued for two decades at the behest of global corporations and their investment bankers.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Concerned Citizen on July 21, 2009
Format: Paperback
Finally, a book that recognizes the importance of America's manufacturing sector and identifies the challenges the sector faces. If America is going to restore economic growth, it needs to rebuild its manufacturing base -- flipping hamburgers and selling insurance policies isn't enough, we have to make things.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Paul Moreno on December 14, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is the one of the most important economics books of today. Composed of chapters written by academics and "think tank" policy makers and analysts, it is well written with extensive footnotes and references. It gives tables and graphs of facts and figures behind the dramatic decline in manufacturing that occurred in the last two decades, which became severe since the 2001 recession.

Topics discussed include protectionist and unfair trade practices such as export subsidies, currency manipulation, forced technology transfer, lax environmental, health and safety regulations, export restrictions, counterfeiting and piracy.

The myth of the US transition to a "knowledge economy" is busted, with a discussion of off-shoring of US research and development, the rise of foreign R&D and the relocation of information technology business services to places like India by companies such as IBM.

A chapter on support industries critical for national defense examines the trend in employment, sales and number of firms in 16 supplier industries, which are overwhelmingly in decline, with companies that make essential spare parts to expensive military hardware going out of business without keeping critical molds, drawings and other things necessary to make these parts.

There is also a chapter about the social consequences of deindustrialization, which covers the largely unsuccessful attempts to replace lost high wage manufacturing jobs and the resulting decline in communities, resulting in urban blight. The downward mobility of laid off manufacturing workers is also discussed.

Unfortunately much of what has occurred is irreversible.

I cannot recommend this book too highly.
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