If there is anything Dov Charney and Rick Santorum can agree on, it’s that the internet can be harshAmerican-made products are pretty great. Companies like GE, Apple and even the legendary Frisbee-maker Wham-O are relocating production of their wares stateside. While there is a solid business rationale – reduced shipping costs, protection of IP, ease of collaboration between the people who design the product and those that make it – there is an equally strong emotional component. Whether it signifies quality craftsmanship, a resurgence of our economy, or is just a rosy afterglow from the Olympics, people from Detroit to LA are bursting with a new nationalism that’s satisfied by buying stuff labeled “Made in the USA.”
“GE’s appliance unit does $5 billion in business—and today, 55 percent of that revenue comes from products made in the United States. By the end of 2014, GE expects 75 percent of the appliance business’s revenue to come from American-made products like dishwashers, water heaters, and refrigerators, and the company expects that its sales numbers will be larger, as the housing market revives”(The Atlantic).
“…In a survey last year of 1,300 affluent shoppers by Unity Marketing, a Pennsylvania-based consulting and marketing group, respondents ranked the United States first (higher than Italy or France) in perceived manufacturing quality of luxury goods” (New York Times).
“In an email to supporters of his grassroots group ‘Patriot Voices’ Tuesday, [Rick Santorum] unveiled a ‘Made in the USA Christmas Challenge.’ ‘We want you to … buy as many Christmas and holiday presents as you can that are made right here in the U.S.,’ reads the email from Santorum and his wife, Karen. ‘As you hit the stores on Black Friday, be mindful of who’s made what you’re buying’” ().
“To some, this inauguration, in fact, may have been as much an occasion for celebrating the first lady’s style… Her choices are safe but interesting, with enough of a story and a variety to keep fashion obsessives engrossed. Wearing a broad array of mostly American designers also feeds into the idea that she is doing her part for the fashion industry” (New York Times).
We’re going to have to learn how to make stuff again.