Give American This Holiday Season

Scott Paul

Scott Paul Director, AAM

First comes Black Friday.

Then comes Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday.

Today begins Made in America December. That’s right; It deserves a whole month.

We all know the deal by now. For the next few weeks people will be flooding big box stores, perusing outlet malls, and surfing Amazon, in search of deals ahead of the holidays. And every year, we get the rush to the register started a little earlier than the last time. It’s no longer uncommon for people to push back from the Thanksgiving table in order to start shopping.

That’s a lot of our time and energy spent on consumption.

Just imagine if we redirected just a little of it toward conscious consumption.

This holiday season, shop American.

There’s no secret to this: Americans like American-made stuff. And the proliferation of “Made In USA” ad campaigns shows that companies are paying attention.

There are plenty of options. Manufacturing has truly gone global in the past few decades, and some product categories have gone completely offshore in the process. But with just a modicum of effort, you can still find a lot of stuff made in the United States.

You can find a selection of American-made goods at an index we’ve put together at the Alliance for American Manufacturing website. And you can find more still in our annual holiday gift guide.

The nicest pair of flip-flops (excuse me; slippers) you’ve ever seen? Aloha! Hawaii has got that. Excellent Detroit-made headphones? Michigan’s got that. Vermont’s finest flannel? We’ve definitely got that.

Lincoln Logs? Yeah, we’ve got those too (thanks, Pennsylvania).

And here’s what makes seeking out an American-made label worth the effort: If every shopper hitting the stores out there (and online) spent just $64 of their total budget on such goods, it would be enough to support an additional 200,000 factory jobs in the United States.

That would go farther than a vindictive tweet or mean-spirited comment to the press ever could.

The holidays aren’t really about overeating, bad football, ugly sweaters, and braving the hordes at the mall; they’re truly about community, volunteerism, and gift-giving.

In 2017, when the country seemingly can’t agree on anything, we should agree on this: There is never a better time than now to purchase an American-made gift.

That gift will mean the world to the person receiving it, and it will mean nearly as much to our fellow citizens who made it.

Please peruse our gift guide! Drop in on the Made in America index. And send us suggestions. We’re always looking for more American-made products to share.

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Reposted from AAM

Posted In: Allied Approaches, From Alliance for American Manufacturing

Union Matters

What's Wrong with GM?

Corporations’ stranglehold on our economy was put on further display last week, when General Motors announced it was laying off up to 14,000 workers across North America.

On a special episode of “State of the Unions,” co-host Tim Schlittner talked with AFL-CIO Industrial Union Council Executive Director Brad Markell, a lifelong UAW member, about what the layoffs say about the state of the economy as a whole:

Tim Schlittner: “Reading the CEO’s statement, Mary Barra, where she says this is about making GM agile, resilient and profitable, then thinking about all the stock buybacks, thinking about some of the incentives they got in the tax law that just passed. Mary Barra made about $22 million last year—that’s 295 times more than the GM median employee—my feeling is like this is crap. That’s just a crap excuse for hoarding more at the top, at the expense of the workers that make GM go. Am I wrong to say that?”

Brad Markell: “I think there are a couple issues there from my point of view. Mary Barra makes a lot of money and executive pay is out of control in this country. Part of what’s the problem with executive pay is how is it incentivized? It’s not that Mary Barra making $22 million is going to kill the company. It’s what does she do to get there, right? What does she do to make those cuts and—and those things that Wall Street wants to see because so much of it’s stock options—so instead of playing to the real economy, you’re playing to Wall Street. That’s a problem.”

Tim Schlittner: “And the stock went up that day. So Wall Street saw this decision to close these plants and basically took that as a positive sign, which shows to me an economy that is completely out of whack.”

Take a listen to the full episode here.

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More ...

Who Really Pays for Tax Cuts?

Who Really Pays for Tax Cuts?