This is an open letter to President Bush about China.
Dear President Bush:
China is in the process of destroying American manufacturing like a fast-growing cancer. Millions of decent, hard-working, taxpaying American family people are losing their skilled jobs with no place to turn. These are skills that their fathers and grandfathers proudly supported their families with, skills that take many years to develop and that are being lost forever because the manufacturing plants they were working at have been relocated to China.
These are the same manufacturing jobs that have made America the most prosperous, envied and powerful country on Earth — jobs that are being eliminated because of greed by corporate America and irresponsible leadership by the very government officials we have voted in office.
Many of my friends and colleagues have written letters to you and to their congressional representatives attempting to inform our elected officials about what is happening to manufacturing in the United States. The incredible trade deficit of $85 billion with China is only the be— ginning of the downfall of our economy, and no one will be exempt from our government's irresponsible management of the U.S./China relationship.
Recently, my innocence about the government's lack of knowledge regarding China turned to anger when I was told about a government-run Internet site (www.uscc.gov/ anrp02.htm) that displays the U.S./China Commission's July 2002 report to Congress.
Our government knows about the damage that is being done to our country, yet it stands back and is allowing China to de-industrialize the United States. I urge you to read this report and ask yourself if our country can remain a world leader without a manufacturing base. I am listing only a fraction of the report's unbelievably alarming facts:
* The U.S. trade deficit rose from $11.5 billion in 1990 to $83 billion in 2001. Technology exports rose from zero in 1990 to $13.3 billion in 2001.
* China is a conspicuous abuser of human rights, labor rights and the environment, and its refusal to follow international standards gives it an unfair advantage over U.S. workers and businesses.
* China is manipulating its currency by holding down its value, gaining an unfair trade advantage.
* Such an imbalanced relationship has troubling implications for U.S. jobs and wages, as well as for the overall economic health of the U.S. manufacturing sector.
* The United States is developing a dependency on Chinese imports that undermine the U.S. defense industrial base.
* Chinese leaders, including Presi-dent Jiang Zemin, emphasize the importance of developing independent, proprietary, high-technology capabilities to boost China's military prowess to counter “hegemonic” U.S. actions.
* The Chinese investment strategy is designed to extract technology from American companies to “reap a technology bonanza.”
* American technology potentially could be transferred to China's military industrial base.
* In 1999, 8 percent of the doctorates in science and engineering awarded by American universities went to Chinese nationals, while 22 percent went to American students.
* Hundreds of major U.S. companies now manufacture in China and are no longer a part of American communities producing jobs for American workers. Every $1 billion in trade deficit costs 11,000-20,000 American jobs. The $85 billion deficit is a loss of up to 1.7 million American jobs.
How can this report be ignored? Why is our government letting this happen?
My guess is that big business is fueling this impending train wreck with millions and millions of dollars for its own benefit. Huge corporations make large campaign contributions to political leaders and can afford lobbyists. Corporate giants that make everything from power tools to coffee pots are relocating to China with the same excitement and reasons that caused people to flock to California during the 1849 gold rush — easy money!
These American companies can manufacture their products in China without all the restrictions our government puts on them here, such as: workers' compensation, overtime pay, Social Security, hospitalization insurance, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration and the Environmental Protection Agency. And the really big bonus is that they can hire highly skilled workers for less than $5 a day.
Mr. President, I ask you to answer this question: Can the United States remain a superpower in the world without being a manufacturing leader?
Pro Mold & Die Inc.