Road to Prosperity: The Superiority of American Manufacturing

With the final (??) health care bill vote today, it may seem pointless to discuss anything else.  However, tomorrow morning will bring more debates, and more battles to be won.  This is true whether the Democrats in Congress destroy our health care today or not.  We must continue to fight on all fronts.  The Book Notes project was started to remind us of what we conservatives believe, and to give us the arguments to convince others that we are right. In the latest section of Pat Toomey’s book, The Road to Prosperity, Mr. Toomey discusses one of the “myths” we conservatives need to fight where ever it rears it’s ugly head: the Myth of American manufacturing.

How many times have you been in a debate, defending our country, or it’s future, and someone says, “Yes, but we don’t produce anything anymore!”  Mr. Toomey does a great job dispelling this line of thinking:

…2007 was an all-time record year for manufacturing in America.  The total volume of manufactured goods reached $1.62 trillion in 2007– twice the level it was in 1985 (in real dollars). That was enough to keep the United States number one in the world in total manufacturing output.  And no one else was even close.

Not only were we manufacturing more than before, we were manufacturing more than everyone else.  We as a nation still do make things.  And we make a lot of things.  Even in these economic times, we still have a very dynamic economy.  This fact is often neglected in one other debate:  Global Warming.

How often have you heard this as an indictment on the United States:  “The US has 5% of the worlds population, and uses 28% of the worlds’ nonrenewable resources.  The United States should be more responsible, and shouldn’t use as much.”  That only tells a portion of the story.  If we use 28% of the “worlds’ nonrenewable resources” but we also produce 25 % of the worlds manufactured goods, people in the middle of this debate might think twice before drinking the green-eco-kool-aid.

Our economy may currently be in a recession, but it is still a very strong economy.  American manufacturing is a quiet hero in our economy, and it deserves more of a defense than it gets today.