the problem with american companies and their products is the same thing i see wrong with the american government and american capitalism (if not western capitalism). it comes down to short-sightedness and greed, and if you really boil it down, being short-sighted is more a symptom than a root cause but it helps the situation spiral in on itself more catastrophically.

i read in a paper today that losses suffered by car manufacturers are hurting innovation down the supply line. that is unfortunate, but perhaps if said manufacturers had been innovating themselves instead of say, churning out suv/truck plants by the dozen maybe they would be well-positioned now. maybe if they built higher quality, higher efficiency, rather than simply higher power, people would be more inclined to still buy their products rather than turning to japanese and european competitors.

no, instead they turn to the old stand-by, "buy american!" implying that to do otherwise is treasonous. except that many cars built by foreign-based companies are: built here, by american workers; contain more american materials/parts than "domestic" cars; and, are often simply better by any metric one wishes to use.

so the governments (by that i mean national, state, and local) bail out sub-par companies continually. every police car, utility truck, fire engine, ambulance, government fleet vehicle, every one is from one of the big three because to buy otherwise would likely cost the elected official in charge their job.

let me see if i have this correct. someone complains about the homeless or the poor not being taken care of. reply - capitalism rewards those that work. okay. someone complains that working forty hours a week without a living wage is unsustainable. - supply and demand, they should get a better job, i.e. a job in higher demand, which would therefore result in higher compensation. okay. corporations build sub-standard products, lose billions (or trillions, hello banks) of dollars, all while constantly getting infusions from governments that cannot act otherwise, and we are supposed to save them from..? - capitalism.

we are taking out wall studs for firewood instead of turning on the furnace. we should be investing in innovation, not coddling failure. if anyone should be getting federal funding (and i submit that almost no one in this sector should) it should be companies like tesla motors (note i say "like," as i don't particularly want to fund them either), or toyota or honda. at least those companies know what they are doing and what do you know, they create jobs here too.

so what do we do in the attempt to prolong the death of dying companies.. we saddle ourselves with debt we'll never pay back because there will always be another giant but lackluster industry to subsidize. and we can only pay down the debt when we have money left over and there will never be any left over because the entire economy hinges on continual spending.


speaking of spending, i wanted to get some chinese and japanese food (yes. both.) earlier this evening, but i wasn't sure how hungry i was. so i used that excuse to talk myself out of getting any. i told myself that i was tired and that i should eat healthier tonight and that i should save money and that i didn't need it, all of which were true. so i ate a bowl of cereal and went to sleep for five hours. cut to now, and every place is closed and i am awake and hungry for foods i cannot have. i'm bitter.

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31.01.09
3.18a
number 9.. .   .? andy andy andy, get your adverbs here

from lake geneva to the finland station