Saturday, January 07, 2006

Thoughts on PBS

Last night there were two shows on PBS that I watched that were quite thought provoking. Both were on the topic of America's future. The first one was on how America is losing it's technical superiority, the second was on Walmart, and specifically it's role in moving a lot of production to China.

I think that the larger of the two problems (losing a technical lead and losing an industrial lead) is losing the technical lead, since the moving of production to China is essentially a temporary thing based on China's lack of worker's rights, which will hopefully be improved. Losing the lead in innovation is a much larger problem for America, especially with globalization and the internet making it easy for services to be moved anywhere. So creative and research jobs are the only way to have a really secure future, because anything else can be outsourcing.

And on Walmart, I don't have a problem with buying from foreign producers, but the whole reason they are cheaper is that their workers are payed next to nothing, and have no benefits. As I mentioned before I think this is ultimately a temporary situation, but it can certainly hurt America in the near term.

Anyway, enough economics ranting. Classes start again on monday so I'll probably have less political-economic stuff.

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