Those people don't want the lifestyle afforded to Chinese factory workers, but the fact is that this lifestyle is an improvement for the vast rural Chinese underclass; this argument comes dangerously close to suggesting that we should further impoverish millions of people to improve the lot of tens of thousands of Americans.
It seems to be a simple fact that the US is structurally disadvantaged in electronics manufacturing.
> this argument comes dangerously close to suggesting that we should further impoverish
I apologize if my comment came across as suggesting a course of action. I'm merely commenting on the original commenter's assertion that Americans do not want manufacturing jobs. I have personally found that to be untrue, even if the job that they wish to have might not be possible here because of economic and/or regulatory reasons.
I just think you have to be careful not to conflate. Americans are willing to work in manufacturing; that's obviously easy to see. They are not willing to work for Chinese manufacturing compensation, even after you correct for environmental impact and shipping costs.
If manufacturing simply can't pay what an American worker needs to make, their willingness to work in factories isn't relevant, is it?
> Those people don't want the lifestyle afforded to Chinese factory workers but the fact is that this lifestyle is an improvement for the vast rural Chinese underclass
Why do you think this might be true? The only reason Chinese workers are poor is that they government let companies treat them as slaves. I don't think we should even consider that taking part on this is fair to Chinese people. On the opposite, agreeing with the practices of the Chinese government is exporting poverty to other parts of the world.
If you think that the advantage is that Western countries get cheaper products, this is wrong again: we could get cheap products anyway, but just using more machines instead of semi-slave labor.
No, you've misread me. I'm comparing Chinese factory workers to (more numerous) Chinese rural poor, who make four to five times less than the factory workers, and whose poverty cannot be attributed to greedy factory owners.
In objective terms, however exploited you think technology manufacturing "slave laborers" are by companies in the west, the west has done those workers a favor. The status quo ante was a poverty so grinding as to make the comparison to unemployed US auto workers laughable.
When you visit a factory, it is easy to see that this is not the case. Yeah, the work sucks, but workers are happy to have the chance in general - they save money to build businesses, give to their families, etc. Factory work is better than starving, and better than farmwork.