One of our favorite gadgets to come out of the 2013 Consumer Electronics Show are these Lego iPhone cases! Dinosaurs, fighter jets, helicopters- the lego options are endless. View more here…and Happy Weekend!
Lego + iPhone = EPIC WIN!
The Chicago Flexible Shaft Co. (ha!), LaSalle and Ontario, 1904, Chicago.
One of the many manufacturing companies that no longer exist in Chicago. In this isolated case, well, there’s probably not as much demand for flexible shafts as there used to be.
But there’s a much bigger story here. There used to be factories all throughout Chicago. These offered well-paid jobs with full benefits and paid vacations. The kids graduating from high school, who couldn’t go to college for whatever reason, aspired to these jobs and were proud to get them. Chicago made steel, assembled bicycles, televisions, telephones and musical instruments, printed magazines and catalogs, forged and stamped metals, plated electronic components, and generally made most of what we bought to fill our homes.
Then some influential one-percenters put their heads together and concocted a plan to get even richer. “We can ship these jobs to other countries,” they said, “and get the world’s poor and their kids to make it all at a tenth of the wages we pay. We’ll let the world make our goods, and we’ll manage its money.”
Then they poured money into our country’s best business schools and hired their professors as consultants. Together they conspired to convince politicians, the press, and the rest of the country that the U.S. had evolved into the “Age of Information.” Nobody needed to do those demeaning blue-collar jobs anymore. We could all sit at desks where no dirt would creep under our fingernails.
Here’s where the first specks of shit hit the fan. Not everyone wanted or was cut out to sit and stare at a CRT all day long. So along came the temporary fix to invest in shopping malls and fast-food chains so those who didn’t get the desk jobs could sell imported goods and serve hamburgers, chicken and coffee to those who did.
These jobs were a compromise at best. No dirty fingernails, but no benefits either. And unlike the good manufacturing jobs of old, nobody was really proud to get one. These are jobs you do while waiting to get a real job. And hoping you don’t get sick in the meantime.
This selfish strategy is still unwinding day after day. The cities that once were prosperous are now filled with unrest.
But the ones who get to play in the one-percenters’ game live in style high above the noise or in rings around the city. From these safe havens they mix with the city only during daylight hours to suck the good out of it.
You get the point. We are living in an unfair and untenable world of make-believe prosperity.
There’s much more to say here. Much more to write.
Whether you agree or disagree please comment or send me a message.
Write or reblog, please.
The definition of what constitutes a modern economy may change with the times, but I firmly believe no country can prosper without domestic manufacturing. Goods made by the hands of our own working middle class. We deserve to have jobs we can take pride in, to know that our work is appreciated and to be paid a decent wage for it. The fate of this country is bound to well-being of the middle class. It’s time we start making things again.