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- Posts: 19252
- Joined: Mon Mar 26, 2007 4:41 am
- Location: New York, NY
While the know-nothing our compatriots elected is trying to kill off free foreign trade, I've learned something I never would have suspected by watching a program called Japan Railway Journal, which I've mentioned here. This episode was about the prosaic topic of manufacturing rails and wheels for trains. Here it is:
- Posts: 1707
- Joined: Fri Sep 10, 2004 5:23 pm
Protectionism does not work, period. We should have learned that lesson from what happened to the American auto industry during the period that Japanese imports were restricted. There were two consequences, neither good for the American automakers. The first is that Toyota, for example, starting importing $50,000 Lexuses instead of $15,000 Corollas. The second is that the American companies fell further and further behind technologically and in the quality and reliability of their products. (I still remember some years ago when I had to fly into Minneapolis and drive to Brainerd, Minnesota for a firm retreat. I had rented a Chevrolet Cavalier with the notoriously bad 2.5-liter "Iron Duke" 4-cylinder engine. Coming back from the retreat and driving to the Minneapolis airport early on a Sunday morning, I was trying to pass a truck on a two-lane road and wondered if I was going to get it up to speed or if I had to call ahead for funeral arrangements. I finally got it up to about 65 and completed the pass, and was thinking that my car at home, an Acura Integra (built by Honda), with a 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine, but of a much modern and efficient design, would have been doing about 85 at that point.) Unfortunately, the moron now occupying the White House never understood that.
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