Holiday Shopping that is "Red, White and Blue"
Too many American are unemployed. But Congress is not likely to act in any meaningful way to boost the economy. The Federal Reserve is trying quantitative easing, but that may not be a panacea.
That's why it is time to take matters into your own hands...and your wallets. This holiday shopping season: Buy American. It's your own personal stimulus plan for our economy.
Buying American is easier than you might think. Localization is in. And, products from golf balls to pool noodles are still made in America. There are plenty of domestically manufactured toys, clothes, and sporting goods to satisfy even the most discriminating of shoppers. American-made goods offer a proven safety record, compared to the frequent incidents of tainted products imported from China.
Before you buy those holiday gifts, look at the label and consider the options. We have dozens of gift ideas on our ManufactureThis blog, and we'll be offering new options for you to consider every day.
When you buy an American-made toy, you're not only helping to employ a U.S. factory worker, but you're also choosing a safe option. There are many, many instances of toxic and lead-painted goods from China. Our children's health isn't worth the risk.
More than one in five consumer products sold in the U.S. in 2006 were made (or partly made) in China, representing a 400% increase since 1997 (when Chinese production accounted for only 5 percent). In some product classes, Chinese goods command almost half of the American market. Perhaps most troubling is the fact that China is the number three supplier of food to the United States.
Sometimes buying imports is unavoidable. I'm typing on a computer that was assembled in Asia. But, you as a consumer have many American-made choices for literally thousands of purchases.
My twin boys are getting made-in-Ohio Little Tikes trikes for the holidays. The sense of satisfaction that I had assembling the trikes was beyond description. I know our boys will be thrilled. But I also know that somewhere in Ohio, there are factory workers who made and assembled these toys. And, in a very small way, I'm supporting their jobs.
Congress and Ben Bernanke, step aside. It's time to reclaim our economy. Join me in painting this holiday shopping season red, white and blue.
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