Yesterday I linked to a story which pointed out that the new crop of Apple iMac’s were apparently made in the USA, and that Apple is planning to relocate and/or expand its manufacturing presence within the borders of the USSA. I surmised that one of the possible explanations for why Apple would move back to a country with such high taxes and prohibitive regulations was due to the landslide of negative PR they received due to the publicity over conditions that exist at their manufacturing plants abroad.
Today I link to another story which reports that Darden Restaurants, who had initially planned on rolling back employee hours in order to avert the additional costs of the Affordable Care act – has apparently decided to scrap that plan because of the negative PR they received. They also state that restaurants work better with full-time employees, but I digress.
So while we continue to see a slew of activity as businesses look for ways to minimize the damage done to their bottom line by new taxes, regulations, and the Affordable Care act – new stories come out where businesses are deciding to pay the PR tax which is a win for big government…for now.
It’s no secret that we need more jobs. The new numbers came out today which show that the unemployment rate has dropped another .1% from 7.8% to 7.7% alongside data that shows the labor participation rate ALSO dropped from 63.8% to 63.6%. So more people are employed, but less people are working because they dropped out of the work force. Anyone touting the drop in unemployment as a GOOD thing is ignoring the obvious. If you’re no longer looking for employment, you don’t count as unemployed! The unemployment rate drop should be driven by job creation, not retirement!
I wouldn’t be surprised if over the coming months we see more stories from the mainstream media that focus negative PR on companies which have outsourced or that are making adjustments to their practices so they can survive despite the ridiculous costs associated with running a business in this country. Sure, on the surface it means more jobs for Americans – but consumer spending isn’t going up. Profits aren’t going up. Growth in our GDP is pretty much flat. These companies are sacrificing profit in the face of negative PR, and for the short term it might instill some false hope and give the media as well as the Obama campaign (it’s not an administration, it’s a campaign, and has been since before 2008) talking points to illustrate that their policies are working.
In reality – less profit will translate to less expansion and less opportunity to invest in research and development, which will result in greater stagnation – not growth.
Personally, I’d rather live in shame than die to applause. Increased tax revenue doesn’t matter if the money is spent before the ink dries. No civilization has ever been taxed into prosperity, and no government as big and wasteful as ours can survive forever especially while trying to maintain the illusion of freedom and the American dream