Tim Cook, the CEO of Apple, was recently asked why his company moved its production to China. “It’s skill”, said Cook in response to Charlie Rose on 60 Minutes. “The U.S., over time, began to stop having as many vocational kind of skills” he said. “I mean, you can take every tool and die maker in the United States and probably put them in a room that we’re currently sitting in. In China, you would have to have multiple football fields.”
A football field is 360 feet long and 160 feet wide for a total of 57,600 square feet.
Apple’s CEO was wrong. The reason the US public schools probably stopped funding vocational programs that trained, for instance, these tool and die makers Cook mentions, is because U.S. corporations left the U.S. for cheaper labor. And when those U.S. manufacturers left, the need for more tool and die jobs dropped, and the jobs that replaced them shifted to the service sector and paid less. For instance, fast food and Walmart, a company that imports many of the products that it sells.
But what Apple’s CEO doesn’t mention is the fact that automation has also cut back on the need for many jobs—like tool and die makers—because computer programmers do that work now. They program a robot to make a part without the need of a tool or die maker.
Yes, the world has changed, but the U.S. still has a large manufacturing sector. In fact, it is the 3rd largest in the world behind China and Germany, and it wasn’t that long ago, about three years, in fact, that the U.S. was still number one.
The manufacturing institute.org reports that “in 2012, (U.S.) manufacturers generated $2.03 trillion worth of value-added. In the 20 years ending in 2012, manufacturing output increased more than 83 percent. The U.S. manufacturing sector is so huge that if it were its own country, it would rank as the eighth-largest world economy. The United States produces the most goods and services overall as measured by gross domestic product (GDP), and is far ahead of second-place China. Other countries, such as Japan and Germany, showed less growth buoyancy over the past decade compared with the United States.”
According to the IMF and CIA World Factbook, in 2015, the U.S. had dropped to third place behind Germany and China. The industrial output in U.S. dollars for the top five countries in 2015 was: 1st place China at $4.92 trillion, 2nd place Germany at $4.16 trillion, 3rd place United States at $3.75 trillion, 4th place Japan at $1.16 trillion, and fifth place U.K. at $588 billion.
My question is this: how does the U.S. support such a large home-based industrial output with only a small roomful of tool and die makers? It doesn’t, because the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that there are 75,950 tool and die makers working in the U.S.
How large? Well, according to Rental Max, it takes 8 square feet per person for what they call partial seating. That means a room to hold almost 76-thousand tool and die makers must be at least 607,600 square feet in size. Now if the tool and die makers are standing, then the room only has to be about 456,000 square feet.
How many multiple football fields would it take to hold that many tool and die makers?
8 to 11 football fields depending on if they were standing or sitting.
Anyone who is interested in discovering the big fat lie that the Apple CEO said on 60 Minutes only has to check the following page at bls.gov. It’s very detailed and it clearly reveals how misleading the CEO of Apple really is.
During the 60 Minutes interview Tim Cook said the notion of Apple avoiding U.S. taxes was ‘political crap’. What do you think—is Apple’s CEO Tim Cook a fraud and liar, just ignorant, and/or full of the crap he’s talking about? After all, isn’t there some truth in that old saying that it takes one to know one?
Lloyd Lofthouse is a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran,
who taught in the public schools for thirty years (1975 – 2005).
Lofthouse’s first novel was the award winning historical fiction My Splendid Concubine [3rd edition]. His second novel was the award winning thriller Running with the Enemy followed by his award winning memoir Crazy is Normal.
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