Modernize the Country of Origin Label
A consumer movement that demands transparent country of origin labels could reinvigorate American economic prosperity.
“Buying America Back” by Alan Uke explains how consumers need product tags with true and accurate country of origin labels in order to be responsible, educated consumers.
In Buying America Back (SelectBooks, 2012), Alan Uke explains how we can create jobs and reclaim our economic prosperity by demanding a better country of origin label on our manufactured goods. By modernizing the iconic tag that reads Made in America or Made in China, Uke believes we can help end unemployment, increase economic prosperity and lessen the threat from imbalanced trade. The following excerpt was taken from the Introduction.
Wherever you are, pause for a moment. Look at the objects around you. Perhaps you are lucky enough to be reading this outdoors where much of what surrounds you is created by nature. Look at what you have with you and what you are wearing. If you are indoors, look at the things you use every day. Chances are, wherever you are reading this book, you are surrounded by many, many objects that are man-made and produced in factories by people and machines.
Before you read on, pick up five of the objects and look at them more closely. You rely on many of these things. Ask yourself this: Where do they come from?
Look for the country of origin label.
Very likely, most of what you found was not made in the U.S.A.
And there may have been some surprises. If you were in the kitchen you might have noticed that almost anything with an electric cord on it, no matter how familiar the American brand, was made in China.
There is also much that the label doesn’t tell you. In all likelihood, many of the objects have components from all over. You weren’t told the whole story when you made your purchase. Something doesn’t feel right, does it?
You use many of these objects on a daily basis. They are supposed to bring you comfort and well-being and yet their country of origin label hints at a deeper, more disturbing truth.
Why is it important to know where the things we buy are made? For starters, the country that makes the product you buy gets the money you spend. Years ago, most things we bought were made in American factories by American workers. The money stayed here in the U.S. and was used to build factories and create jobs. Today, 60% of the manufactured consumer goods we buy are imported from other countries. This means 60% of the money you spend for these goods is sent out of the United States, keeping people and companies in other countries employed and making money. Meanwhile our job base is disappearing, deficits are ballooning and our future looks bleak.
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