Smart government would like to keep smart people and smart jobs within country and consider long term to protect country.
Silly government will never think of those. From his high level point of view, he would think of cost efficient which is just a short term. After certain period of time, he would realize and regret. "Regret" will never happen ahead of the time. Luckily we have got Smart people at administration before our country has regretted.
The "private sector" companies in the "defense" industry go over budget and run behind schedule precisely because they are not subject to the discipline of the market. Intel would be out of business in 2 years or less with this level of wastage and shoddy execution.
One of the first industries to move offshore in 1950's sadly was Precision Machine Tools and then over longer time, Precision Machining. To me that is why Detroit lost out to Europe in cleaner diesels and to Japan in more efficient gasoline cars. Perhaps we should start by re-inventing precision machining and machine tools OTHER than 3D prototype printers?
No easy answers using classical capitalist short-term optimization. So there is a role for government, but not one that is popular with bankers and politicians. Many smart people want challenging jobs in the US. But they have no sponsors to recreate high tech infrastructure in the US.
But as they say, capitalism is not tasked with creating jobs, but rather in eliminating needs for jobs and other "wastes" in manufacturing or agriculture. And we know that in past, socialism did not work for very long, as it supported jobs but not innovation.
So given the types of problems we have globally, should all workers become MIGRANTS? Move to whatever state or country needs the skills you already have? My career in semiconductor industry kept me moving within the US, and then globally, for 54 years. Is that the future for everyone not born with large inheritance where their money can work for them while they drive BMW's and play golf?
Can workers follow the work, or should governments bring the work to the workers?
Should state unemployment services include finding jobs for people in other states?
Should most people RENT with short leases, so they can follow the work? How will the majority of people adapt as industries pop up elsewhere?
Many of those AMERICANS with the expereience and knowledge for manufacturing were all laid off and either retired or switched careers. The MBA's and lawyers at the top, with NO knowledge or experience should not be the ones who are in charge of setting up such centers. Sometime you have to put the best people in charge, even if the government is run by those least qualified.
One area that I think we need to focus on is lighting. Manufacturing of advanced LED bulbs is an industry that will not go away anytime soon and creates a significant repeat buy (even if the lifetime of the bulbs is longer than current incandescent bulbs. CFLs are short term replacement. LEDs are where we are heading and we probably have a decent supply of workers that are willing to do the jobs for a reasonable price. It would seem to me that we should be looking to these sort of oppotunities if at all feasible.
Outsource the production of our most advanced military equipment to our least-improbable enemy in the next great war? That's about as smart from a military point of view as burning our dwindling oil and gas reserves in a gluttonous orgy, so that JoeBob doesn't have to give up his F350 for a few more years.
Instead of preaching the private sector how to do better in manufacturing, the government should first apply these principles to themselves first. DoD is prime example where the manufacturing is mess. It has everything what a government is known for - expensive, inefficient and slow. F-35 program is trillion dollar over budget and counting (it would be cheaper to outsource such projects to China).
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