Here's something interesting you probably didn't read in any 2013 year-end wrap-ups: Our U.S. Government spent over $1.5 billion of our U.S. tax dollars with foreign apparel producers in 2013-- so we could turn around and import clothes for U.S. Forest rangers, airport security workers, and even for our troops on military bases.
And that's just the beginning. Here are other ways our tax dollars were supporting foreign apparel markets, instead of supporting our own:
- If you visited the Smithsonian Institution in 2013 and bought clothing, it was likely made in Thailand.
- Cambodia made much of the clothing sold by the U.S. Army and Air Force.
- If you work for the General Services Administration, you have Bangladesh workers to thank for your uniforms...they supplied many of them.
- Haiti factory managers are looking forward to 2014 because they're hoping to double the number of camouflage pants, shirts, and jackets destined for U.S. military bases.
It's a great strategy to buy American-made goods whenever possible as consumers, but the missing link in a well-rounded, and more extensive, 'Buy American' strategy is to voice your thoughts and opinions to our legislators. Let them know that we don't want the tax revenue that we send to Washington spent overseas with foreign producers in foreign countries. After all, funding factories in foreign lands only makes it harder for our own domestic producers to compete in what is already a cut-throat global economy.
Why should legislation, passed by our Congress, cause clothing makers and apparel companies abroad to hire more workers simply because we are showering them with federal contacts and orders? Why not shower our home companies with those orders and contracts instead, and cause American companies to hire more workers here in this country?
Some advantages--already so clear to many patriotic-minded Americans--are:
- More American jobs saved and created.
- More tax revenue spent according to the wishes of "We the people."
- More economic growth here at home.
- More trade surpluses (and fewer trade deficits) with our trading "partners."
- A lower unemployment rate.
- Fewer Americans dependent on government support.
- More Americans with money in their pockets ready and willing to spend.
The Buy American Project is a new non-profit organization -- founded by the author of this article - that focuses on emphasizing to our legislators the advantages of Buying American to our nation. The issues raised in this article represent examples of what we talk about to both Republicans and Democrats in Washington when we advocate and discuss pro-Buy American legislation with members of Congress.
Why is this new non-profit called the Buy American Project? Because we've got work to do!
Our first plan of work is a National New Year's Resolution for 2014, and here it is: We will purchase apparel for our American military, as well as other government workers and officials, made by fellow Americans!
Here's the second plan of work, and it's about what you can do to help get our national New Year's resolution off the ground and get Congress' attention: Support the Buy American Project. Here are four different ways you can do just that:
- With as little as $5.95 we will send you a "2014 National New Year's Resolution" postcard that you can mail to your Congressional Representative, urging him or her to stop spending our tax money with foreign factories.
- If you donate $9.95, we'll send you a copy of How Americans Can Buy American: The Power of Consumer Patriotism, along with the "National New Year's Resolution" postcard.as well.
- For a slightly larger donation of $12.95, we'll send you a copy of My Company 'Tis of Thee: 50 Patriotic American Companies American Consumers Should Know About, along with your "National New Year's Resolution" postcard.
- For the greatest support, donate $14.95 and receive both books mentioned above, along with "2014 National New Year's Resolution" postcard.
To make a great impact, The Buy American Project needs your help and participation. Knowing which legislators are getting postcards will let us know which members of Congress to visit during our next visit to Washington, DC. And it is only through donations from patriotic Americans like you that travel to Washington, DC is made possible.
America's unemployment rate is too high to be sending tax dollars, paid by hard-working Americans, overseas to foreign workers in distant lands. This current practice becomes even more insulting when we realize that only American workers pay taxes to America!
Perhaps President William McKinley put it best when he said "The foreign producer has no right or claim to equality with our own. He pays no taxes. He performs no civil duties; he is subject to no demands for military service.... He contributes nothing to the support, the progress, and glory of the nation. Why should he enjoy unrestrained equal privileges and profits in our markets with our producers, our laborers, and our taxpayers?"
I hope that you'll consider supporting the Buy American Project today, and tell Congress to stop the funding of foreign factories in 2014!