Thursday, June 25, 2015


Tom Geoghegan -- in his recent book "Only One Thing Can Save Us" -- portrays US auto manufacturers dumbing assembly jobs down (it’s called “simplicity”) — I’m just starting to write about this for the first time — it genuinely means gutting productivity nationwide in the usual short-sighted quest to squeeze labor.

In Germany (labor having a big say because of the co-determination worker councils) employees are brought into the design and manufacturing process to the nth degree. Which makes them productive enough to average $66 an hour including benefits.

In the US manufacturing jobs are now being reduced to simpler and simpler component portions — why auto workers can be reduced from $28 an hour to $14.

Thing is we only have X amount of workers — a fixed number. If we are now on a nationwide race to shrink the productivity of individual workers — that may look good for an individual company — fallacy of composition — but we are on a head long charge to lower and lower our overall output per worker. !!!

Meantime all other economies in the world — especially in the third world — are desperately attempting to pick up (and/or steal) product manufacturing skills so they can achieve maximum possible prosperity some day. We can wave to them going up while we are going down.

No comments: