Posts Tagged ‘Rights’

Printers When Your Business Fails — Thank China

Wednesday, March 17th, 2010
I thought it was time to move off the China subject and go to something else, but there have been a rash of comments on this site and on my printing groups on LinkedIn that I’m going to post another China related blog in an attempt to address those other concerns.

Are American families, homes, and jobs worth defending?

Sometimes I can’t believe my ears. What has happened to America? Americans used to fight for their rights, but now our fight begins by laying down our guns. Our motto seems to be “why try; it won’t do any good anyway.”

Chinese printers market their low ball prices in the United States aided by two main things:

  • Their costs are one-tenth of ours. How did I arrive at that figure? It was easy; I know how much minimum wage is in the US. Remember this wage is mandated by the government. Employers have to pay it. They also have to pay matching Social Security, so the real figure is much higher. I also read an article in Reuters that discussed how much the average factory worker earns in China. Without matching Social Security, they earn 1/10th.  Suppose you are a Chinese printer marketing to the US, how difficult would it be to come in at half the price when your labor costs are less than 1/10th? Who is making the real money here? The Chinese workers? Ha!
  • China plays hardball when it comes to International Trade. They are members of the WTO, but you don’t have to look far to see filing, after filing, after filings of Chinese trade violations for anti-dumping and anti-subsidies. Some states have a three times you are out law to penalize career criminals. If we held China up to this same standard they would right now be serving several consecutive lifetime sentences. They can import some products to the US for 2-5% duties. We, on the other hand, have to pay some 24% to sell there. It is wrong, it isn’t fair, and it is killing the US economy.

Since our government won’t help, and the business elite are benefiting from cozy relationships with foreign countries, there is only one thing left to “we the people,” and that is our collective buying power. If enough of us refuse to buy Chinese, Pakistani, Indian, Mexican, or any other products made from cheap labor we can turn the tide.

Some say that it is unfair to blame these countries because it is the American consumer who really controls the prices. Of course I want low prices, but not at the expense of putting myself or my neighbors out of work. I don’t know about everyone else, but if presented with two identical items and one is made in the US and the other in China I would rather buy American, even if it was a little more. I would not choose Chinese industry over American.

What about the automobile business, didn’t the Japanese do the same thing? No — they didn’t. They didn’t compete solely on price, although they used price at first to get our attention. What they did is build a better vehicle than the crap being pumped out by Detroit. I hate it that we lost this giant industry to foreign competition, but we deserved to lose it. Not because of the workers but because of the fat cats at the top who left the office every day counting their lavish bonuses while steadily guiding their companies into bankruptcy. Bonuses for bad leadership — whoever thought that was a good idea?

We are experiencing a 10% unemployment rate in the United States right now, primarily because of a few bankers who used vast lobbying power to influence congress. Our government systematically deregulated the banking and financial institutions until we got chaos. Those who believe in free markets, take note, without some control everything goes to hell, quickly.

There is an axis of evil to coin a phrase from George W. Bush. Americans are being crushed economically by Wall Street Bankers, the US Congress, the Insurance industry, and unfair foreign competition. Until these four entities are brought to task it is going to do nothing but get worse. Do you hate 10% unemployment, reduced wages, and increased working hours? That is just a start. Over the next few decades we will see 25% unemployment, salaries cut to the bone, and typical working days of 16 hours. Once Wall Street has us where they want us, poor, starving, and desperate we will be competitive with China, because we will be reduced to their level. Welcome to the new America, the one world government, the one fashioned by the true axis of evil.


The Red Hen is Off the Nest

Tuesday, June 16th, 2009

NHRedMy last blog entry was the manifesto for The Red Hen Association of Self-Publishing Authors. The manifesto is a statement of the vision and purpose. I can tell that I’ve hit the right chord with the authors because so many of you are stepping forward and want to participate. So let me bring you up to speed on where we are at this moment:

  1. Of course, the manifesto has been written and published on this blog. I’m hoping that others will pick it up and pass it around, hint, hint.
  2. While we are not yet ready to accept memberships, we should be in a week or less.
  3. We are ironing out the legal stuff by meeting with our attorney tomorrow.
  4. We’ve discussed the structure of the organization and are taking steps to formalize the company.
  5. We’ve been spreading the word to the experts we know who can aid authors to see if they are interested in coming on board.
  6. I’ve been thinking about and creating lists of rights and responsibilities of vendors. Certified suppliers will have to meet certain criteria before they could be recommended.
  7. I created a Red Hen group on Facebook, and would encourage interested authors to look it up and join, this way I can keep you updated regularly, plus we can have discussions about things like certification criteria. Through interaction we can learn from each other and find the best ways to meet the goals of the Association. Your input is vital.
  8. The logo is being developed. The red hen picture above is not the official logo, but it will do as a place holder for the time being.
  9. I’m thinking that surveys will be an excellent method of gathering information. I want to survey our members every time they use a recommended vendor to determine their levels of satisfaction.  Again, we learn from one another. If a vendor pops up as a problem too often they will be eliminated from the list. We have to protect each other from the predators. For example, within the last few months I was hired by BookWise a publisher’s support company to find the best printing price for a book they were handling. The author was an extremely personable woman from Texas who had gotten entangled with a questionable firm. After shelling out $40 Thousand Dollars, she had nothing to show for it. Once she moved her book over to BookWise they were able to do the whole thing for around one quarter the cost and she had a garage full of beautiful books to market. I hate to think ill of people, but there are those who would bleed you dry and give nothing but empty promises in return.
  10. We are investigating alternative marketing methods, in addition to the tried and true. We want authors to have the best chances of selling their books. This will be ongoing, like most of the things we are doing. The Red Hen Association will be dynamic and proactive in seeking opportunities for self-publishing authors.
  11. The blog site will be up this week and hopefully we will be ready with an opt-in program to receive the newsletter. Between the blog, newsletter, Facebook group, Twitter, and any other methods of communication that may come around, we will be able to keep members informed. After all, communication, is the life blood. Hey, I just thought of Twitter. I’ll open a Red Hen account as soon as I finish this blog entry.

I’m certain I’ve forgotten something important, but I can add it to another blog, Facebook, or Twitter for you all to follow. Thank you very much for your support. As you see we have a big job to do and have given ourselves a short time frame to do it. Any suggestions will be gratefully received–and that includes spelling or grammar corrections. I’m editable.

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