Monday, April 6, 2009

A Syracuse Non-Sports Item That Pissed Me Off

Maybe it's because I am laid off due to similar circumstances or maybe it's because I know the history of Syracuse China very well but I was so pissed this afternoon reading this article. What made it worse was reading the comments left by a few who are either ignorant or simply promoting their political agenda. A Syracuse landmark of business is closing and instead of offering sympathies or answers, people are getting on their political horse finding who to blame. Do unions and outsourcing play a role in this decision as well as taxes and overhead cost to make things in the USA? Of course but we need damn answers and not more rounds of "The Blame Game".

I have been laid off and attended job fairs so I can attest to the fact that it is not a fun atmosphere out there right now. I have family in the same circumstance or close to it just waiting for the other shoe to drop. What we don't need right now is some jackass lecturing about how unions are out to bleed a country dry or how NAFTA killed our manufacturing industry, whether you believe it to be true or now? You know what I rarely see in there comments, actual solutions to the problem.

Here are some facts for all of us to consider. Unions help make many reach a wage level that they could afford to make a decent living on and helped to provide health/safety benefits in atmospheres where it was badly needed. NAFTA and free trade in general are the reason you can go to Wal-Mart or many other stores and purchase items cheap that you need. When American people are not working, income tax is not generated, more tax money is needed to help them maintain and more businesses lose money because people don't have money to spend forcing businesses to eventually shut down.

So according to many, we should make unions illegal, close the borders for businesses and the importation of cheap goods and everyone should have a college education. Is that about right? I am calling BS on that as someone who has tried college a few times with no success and it is not from a lack of trying, someone who has worked for a union, and someone who enjoys buying cheap goods when I can (especially if it is orange).

So as I sit here typing this, asking for answers, what would I recommend? Tax breaks for corporations based on the amount of jobs they create/utilize would be a nice step (although in all honesty, I would love to see the Fair Tax, for more information). Unions maintained but with a real expectation of what it cost to run a business and still balance the welfare of the employees and the ability for a company to make a profit, which is a goal of any business. I do think the program to allow adults to try college is a great idea and should be emphasized but not be promoted at the sole solution to cure our problems(trust me, it's not as easy of a solution as some of you may believe). The auto industry and others are now allowing tax break incentives to purchase American made products which is something we should have been doing for years now.

Let's face it, we can't expect to compete when other countries are utilizing child labor or paying their employees $2 an hour to do something we want to be paid $20 an hour to build. So instead of fighting over liberal or conservative labels, why not fight over the best possible solution in finding the middle ground and other incentives to help maintain the American manufacturing industry. I understand those of you who finished college should get some incentives for such tasks and I applaud your hard work and hope it is paying off for each and every one of you. The truth is though that the answers are more then just get a degree and find the next generation of technology to explore because the truth is, that also can be outsourced one day just the same. Let's promote the American worker and stop laying off companies that have been mainstays in our communities for decades. And if you have real solutions, please speak up and let it be heard.

OK, back to the sports talk now. Go Orange.

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