Sunday, January 8, 2012

How to Keep Manufacturing Jobs in the U.S.

The Houston Chronicle published an opinion piece today by a writer proposing "solutions" to keep manufacturing jobs in the U.S. Here is the link:

I was a Fortune 500 attorney who spent a decade negotiating overseas and setting up offshore companies. I can tell you that NONE of it was due to our U.S. tax structure or because our corporate taxes were "too high" - so that argument in his article is groundless.

We set up oversees operations for other reasons: either to get lower cost labor, to avoid import tariffs or access to a market like China. So the tax argument is bogus. While the gross corporate tax rate appears high, the NET U.S. taxes are the 2nd LOWEST in the world because we have so many deductions and special breaks, including the foreign tax credit. That's why General Electric, who made millions in profits, paid ZERO income taxes last year.

But yes, I agree with the article's author that we do need more skills training here. We just aren't doing it.

Here is the shocker: Despite the 8.5% unemployment rate, the U.S. currently has 3 million UNFILLED JOBS OPEN TODAY--enough to bring the unemployment rate down to 6%! These are high paying jobs of $70,000 a year or more. They remain unfilled because there aren't Americans with the skills for them. Ninety percent (90%) of the applicants who apply for these jobs fail to even qualify for training!

So companies either have to leave these high paying jobs unfilled or hire foreign workers who DO have the skills to come to the U.S. -- or ship them overseas where workers have the needed skills.

None of the Presidential candidates are talking about this fact, of course, since states are cutting education. And THAT loss of education and training, not taxes, is gutting our future competitiveness in a high-tech global economy.

You'll find more details about how the U.S. can compete and win in the global economy in my upcoming eBook, to be published later this month. Subscribe for updates.

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