In the this issue we have a story spotlighting products that are still made in the USA. When I first read the piece, I was pleased to see so many familiar things. But I was almost equally dismayed to find that certain names I expected to see on this list—makers of cars and planes and other big, impressive all-American goods—didn’t qualify because so much of their manufacturing or component parts now originate from overseas.
More than that, I found myself thinking about the one thing I’d really like to see made in America—more jobs.
So, where are they? It’s a question on a lot of minds, especially in the wake of economic conditions that saw nearly 7 million jobs vanish. When the 2009 multibillion dollar stimulus package was unveiled, the government promised that stimulus would create and save some 3.5 million jobs, but making that promise was much easier than actually keeping a job tally, and many believe that the actual number will ultimately fall short of the mark.
The pundits say things are getting better. But it’s hard to be upbeat about the economy when most
of us are still reeling from one of the worst downturns since the Great Depression. Meanwhile, stimulus funding to date seems to be favoring Wall Street more than Main Street. Small business, the very heart of American private enterprise, is also the engine that drives the creation of
new jobs, yet recovery funds don’t seem to be making their way down to entrepreneurs—and the people they might employ—with a speed or efficiency that has made a real difference yet. Until it does—if it does—it’s hard to look on the bright side.
But it is surely there. While we may lament our ongoing economic woes, there’s something about tough times that brings out the best in us, that makes us roll up our sleeves and work harder, like the men and women profiled in writer Doug Donaldson’s story, “Enterprising Endurance.” Reading their stories reminded me that even in difficult times, America has an abundance of ambition, motivation, and even optimism. Thankfully, these things, too, are still made in the USA.
Stephen C. George
Editor-in-Chief, The Saturday Evening Post
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