Author Topic: buying made in the USA  (Read 3469 times)

woodworker2010

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buying made in the USA
« on: February 16, 2012, 07:24:36 PM »
This year, I'm attempting to buy as little as possible.  The things I buy, I want to buy made/grown locally, or at least in the USA as much as possible.  Tools-80-90% or better.  Clothes  70% or better (easy since we don't buy much here), building supplies-60 or better,  Food: 100% (no compromises there).  Reduce the impact of transport, support jobs for local people, and simply think through the back-end of production as much possible. 

velocistar237

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Re: buying made in the USA
« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2012, 11:02:02 AM »
Great idea. I think we'll get there eventually.

For durables, what do you think about buying used vs. buying made in USA? Used is typically cheaper, but I don't know what the overall effects and issues are.

kolorado

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Re: buying made in the USA
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2012, 11:47:44 AM »
My hubby is one of the few manufacturing workers left in the US. Even though the product he makes isn't sold for retail, I still appreciate everyone who makes a conscious effort to support American workers.
I made it my goal last year to be sure at least 50% of the gifts we gave to our children were American made or used. It is really really difficult to find American made toys for older kids! But I was successful in my goal and actually hit 75% with one child's birthday. I really need to choose a new challenge area to add this year.
I just bought a new mattress and was very pleased to find out that both Sealy and Simmons manufacture their mattresses in the US.
 

arebelspy

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Re: buying made in the USA
« Reply #3 on: February 21, 2012, 02:08:38 PM »
65% or so of things consumed in the USA is made here in the US. Cheap things like clothes and plastic stuff is from outside the US.

Some stuff you have to buy foreign made, a lot is American by default. Focusing on locally grown and made things is the way to swing the balance to a little more made in America and a little less from overseas.
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Balance

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Re: buying made in the USA
« Reply #4 on: February 23, 2012, 08:35:19 AM »
The last couple of years we have bought almost all of our food from local farmers. We also believe in simplicity and the minimalist approach so we don't buy as much as we used to.  But if we end up having a child this year we will possibly buy a newer car which will most likely be Japanese made :) Other than that everything is bought locally.

Sparafusile

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Re: buying made in the USA
« Reply #5 on: February 23, 2012, 08:37:15 AM »
Even the "Japanese" cars at your local dealership are probably made in the US.

Mike Key

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Re: buying made in the USA
« Reply #6 on: February 23, 2012, 10:32:26 AM »
Even the "Japanese" cars at your local dealership are probably made in the US.

I come from a family of GM workers, and you know what. It's a sad state of affairs when the Japanese can figure out how to build cars in the US paying Americans better than the BIG 3 and selling them for cheaper. The Unions and piss poor greed/management ruined the big 3.

After owning an Audi, I'm more open to foreign cars. Our next car will be a Kia. Although I think those are from South Korea.

Matt K

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Re: buying made in the USA
« Reply #7 on: February 23, 2012, 10:47:21 AM »
After owning an Audi, I'm more open to foreign cars. Our next car will be a Kia. Although I think those are from South Korea.

Kia does a lot of design and engineering in California, and has a manufacturing plant in Georgia (http://www.kmmgusa.com/). According to the site, they manufacture the Sorento, Hyundai Sante Fe, and new Optima.

My current car was made in Japan, but my previous car (a Mazda 6) was union made in Ohio. Just as many "Japanese" cars are made in the USA, a very large number of "American" cars are actually manufactured in Canada.

What always got me was the Pontiac Vibe: built on the same line as its sister, the Toyota Matrix, in the same factory, using the same parts, but the Pontiac depreciated way more because it was "American" and less reliable than the Toyota. O_o


James

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Re: buying made in the USA
« Reply #8 on: March 29, 2012, 09:54:53 AM »
I tend toward buying USA simply because of transportation issues, especially with food, but I really can't get into the "USA only" bandwagon.  I'll spend as little as I can on quality, but I'm not going to hold it against a worker in another country simply because they didn't win the birth lottery.

It's a complex issue so I'm not saying I'm right or that anyone else is wrong, just my 2 cents.  :)

Buying used I can total agree with!

shedinator

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Re: buying made in the USA
« Reply #9 on: March 29, 2012, 10:53:53 AM »
I'm more concerned with ethical sourcing than the country in which a thing was produced. I don't hold it against a worker in another country for wanting to support him/herself and family, and if his/her product is top knotch at a good price, I'm just as willing to purchase it. But if I know that the person who made that product is probably a slave, or getting paid less than a livable wage, while the seller gets rich, I'm not on board. That said, most of the "more affordable" foreign products tend to rely on super cheap (slave or sub-par pay) labor. Obviously, shipping stuff from Malaysia when you paid the workers there a livable wage is much less affordable than when you had a bunch of 8-year-olds work for $0.03/hour. So by the time you account for ethics, a lot of stuff made in the USA ends up back in the discussion for "most affordable." Electronics and cars are a major exception, as the Japanese have simply found ways to be more efficient (although as noted above, a lot of "Japanese" products are manufactured on US soul). Also, stuff like Coffee, which can't be efficiently grown in the US outside of Hawai'i, is almost always going to be more affordable from non-US sources.

I do prefer local over big box or online retailer, but that's more because it's easier to figure out whether a local business is treating its workers fairly, whereas an Amazon or a Wal Mart can much more easily mask its labor practices.