It's in danger of becoming so well-worn that it loses impact: The shortage of skilled workers and the lack of interest in manufacturing by young people.
Now there are fears that slowing growth in the labor force is hurting U.S. economic growth today, and for years in the future. In late August, The Associated Press released its latest survey of leading economists. Most of them said the rather listless pickup that we've seen so far, in the slow recovery from the Great Recession, should continue.
AP reported that nearly 70 percent of the economists think economic growth through 2017 will remain under 3 percent — which had been the average over many years.
OK, 2017 … that's only two more years, right? Unfortunately, the worker slowdown hangs, long-term, over the economy like a dark cloud following Eeyore, like dirt hanging around Pig-Pen. Like Donald Trump pasting Jeb Bush — well, maybe not as bad as that, but still …
AP reported that many of economists say the slowdown in the proportion of Americans with jobs are hurting the overall economy. People in the plastics industry — and most other industries — already know that skilled Baby Boomers are retiring. Finding replacements eager to machine the metal, set up the injection molding machines, run the quality labs and other industrial tasks has become a matter of national urgency.