Chaos From Ship-To-Shore-to-Store

One of our myriad of current problems in America, besides inflation, migration, and excessive, likely Constitutionally-challenged, central government mandates (lengthy lock-downs/masks/vaccinations/IRS personal bank account surveillance, etc.), is the heretofore unthought-about, and rarely before ever worried-about, key economic process known as the “supply chain.”  Currently, this means, principally, chaotic issues with docking space for ocean shipping (from China), then terminal container storage space, and, finally, trucking of those product-filled containers to domestic distribution centers and retail destinations.

Identified as the culprit at the heart of the “supply chain” issue, impacting, as well, American manufacturing, leisure services, restaurants, retail stores, and, lately, just about every other component of the American business economy, is the worker. You see, the problem, we’re told, is that there just aren’t enough workers.  But that glosses over the real issue.  The problem we face today is not that there aren’t enough workers, but rather that there aren’t enough people working!

America has millions of workers and millions of open jobs.  The problem connecting the two is our Progressive-Socialist (“American Marxist” per Mark Levin) central administration and Congress which insists on wealth redistribution as the solution to everything they perceive as “evil” about our great nation.  Simply put, as you all well know, it was the initiation of added federal child payments/credits and federal welfare supplements (to already existing state welfare payments) back in early 2020, when the COVID epidemic was in full force. And with those added payments, on the federal side, only now ending, for all states, in late September, long, long after that gushing spigot should have been turned off, something apparently anathema to Socialists who prefer to solve every dilemma by throwing buckets of money at it, and then rarely, if ever, stopping.  Thus, today, Green is the new Blue (to be made far worse if multi-trillion-dollar Democrat bills pass).  And here, it’s not about climate, but all about currency (and debt)!

The result of this federal fire hose of free money was that recipients in entry level or lower paying jobs felt that they could, literally, no longer afford to work.  The government successfully enabled millions of prior workers on the free money ride to stay home, leaving millions of small businesses, within various categories, in a labor bind so severe that many were forced to reduce service hours or to close down entirely.  Yet another historic and painful example of Santa Government’s redistribution of funds from those who do work, to those who could but prefer not to, and in so doing, solving one problem while creating an even bigger one for those owners and managers who supply the jobs and, now, can’t fill them.  In some cases, workers have actually opted for early retirement, once off the work treadmill for a period of reflection. While, at the same time, we’re currently experiencing an unusual acceleration in employees simply quitting their jobs, perhaps in order to pause to evaluate career options, maybe simply hoping to find work at a higher compensation level.  Either way, leaving large gaps in the employee ranks, that some predict may last awhile, or even perhaps for a very long time!  While on the corporation, and even smaller business side, this seeming lack of available workers has actually forced the opportunity to look at high-tech, automation, and/or other forms of work reorganizing and production efficiencies.

Again, the cash machine was allowed, purposefully, to run on for too long, creating now millions of unfilled traditional jobs among the nation’s basic businesses.  The additional inflation-ballooning solution, and not at all their fault, on the part of those businesses (and manufacturers) seeking to fill those open positions was to increase wages/salaries, and even if competition required, actually add “signing bonuses” to a compensation package that might be required in order to attract needed experienced personnel, or even, at a lower employment skills level, just plain find the “bodies” needed to keep a business open and afloat.  All of which, as you know, immediately or eventually adds to the consumer’s cost for the goods or services desired. And that helps drive up inflation across the board, that we’re now being alerted isn’t likely to be temporary, but will probably be with us, and our bank balances, for the foreseeable future.  And that is a huge lifestyle negative for all Americans, but certainly for our lower income citizens, especially (even those continuing to receive various forms of government financial help!).

And that brings us to illegal southern migration (now in the hundreds of thousands of individuals), or with permission, Afghanistan refugees (now in the tens of thousands).  All of these people will require further redistribution of American tax dollars, through direct subsistence payments, medical care, and education, the latter two elements posing a direct likelihood of forced state/local tax hikes, sooner rather than later.  But in some cases, the “Open Border” Progressive-Democrats hope and assume, this hoard of migrants and refugees may solve the touted, but false, need for more and more workers in America.  And while such will lower wages needed to fill those lower level, largely manual  jobs, it is certain to create conflict and resentment, when those previous paid-to-stay-at-home-and-work-free (literally) individuals run short of funds, as some of that spewing federal faucet shuts off, and then seek to return to America’s work force, now facing, perhaps unexpectedly, potential competition from those arriving from foreign lands who, for lack of language and skills, occupy the lower-level and entry-level jobs, and at a significantly lower wage than the previous lack-of-workers-era had forced upward.

And there’s yet another huge negative to the Progressive-dreamed federal government cradle-to-grave handouts.  We talk about redistribution of wealth from those who work, to those who, in too many cases, could, but don’t.  But there’s another worrisome, bound-to-be-permanent redistribution issue.  And that is the redistribution of individual personal responsibility to total government provided financial care-taking.  No need to prepare for or worry about the world of work awaiting most everyone out there, when Father Government is there (and it’s coming) to provide for your every need.  Personal responsibility is, and in modern generations, always has been, a core element of the American character.  Grown men and women naturally assume responsibility for the well-being of both themselves and their families.  We are taught from the earliest age that we must be educated, develop marketable skills, and then prepare to enter the workforce at the proper time and place.  And continue on that work pathway until retirement, when savings, investments and a return on our years of Social Security withholdings, will then collectively continue the task of self-providing.

Personal responsibility is a central part of who we are as Americans.  It is a source of pride and fulfillment not to be dependent on the government, when we are physically and mentally able to provide for ourselves.  That’s a foundational element of maturity.  And none of those positive feelings can be duplicated when one’s support comes, not from “an honest day’s work,” but simply from a no-effort government handout.  As our more socialist-turning government seems ever more determined to “transition” our free society into a centrally-controlled, more-completely welfare-driven one, personal responsibility, personal property, personal accomplishment and pride, and all of the other personal character qualities that have always fortified and defined us, are diminished to the eventual point of disappearance.  “Streets paved with (government) gold” (but never enough) become the norm to appease (and control) the masses in the alleged Democratic-Socialist world of authoritative regimes.  And what’s promised is never delivered, because at some point with dominant Socialism, “you run out of other people’s money,” as Margaret Thatcher once reminded us.

The saying “free for all” used to mean things like kids racing around a yard trying to gather up the most colored Easter eggs, or two opposing groups of street thugs fighting it out for dominance.  As we’ve discussed above, but today, “free for all” can easily refer to this recent past damaging practice of the federal government handing out far too much “free” money to the far too many who saw it as an opportunity to quit their jobs and spend a few unplanned months sitting at home, leaving the real world of work to others. Meant initially, and honorably, to help Americans during a time of an unexpected and prolonged health crisis, with all new rules, expectations, and schedules, as we now regrettably well  know, the money for individuals was too much, and was distributed for far too long, resulting at this point in definite damage to American private businesses, from manufacturing, to leisure services, to restaurants, and other retailers, small and large.  Leaving us with local operations forced to reduce hours or completely shuttered businesses, creating wide-spread owner/manager worry, as well as personal economic hurt.

“Free for all,” when that saying is applied to government financial handouts, needs to be limited, and targeted, with end-date-certain established, in order to help, not hurt Americans and American enterprise.  That’s the government’s responsibility, which needs to be just as responsible as that which we encourage and revere on the individual citizen side. Rather, we now have too few workers, which translated, again, means, too few people working!  And the current (and lasting?) supply chain chaos it is largely responsible for producing.

Along with that are the now legendary, seemingly inexcusable, central administration blunders and mismanagement, and in so many areas, which certainly seems to have our ship of state lurching ever closer to the rocks, and into even worse mayhem than we are being forced to live through now.  And that all goes well beyond the “supply-chain” threat of diminished Christmas presents under the tree! With our emphasis on personal responsibility, a whole lot more evidence of government responsibility is both needed, required, and would be welcomed by all who truly care about our country and its future. We desperately need that vastly improved responsibility, for starters to help eliminate the chaos we see, right now, and hopefully temporarily, in product shipping off-shore, and far, far more importantly, amidst the domestic chaos here, on-shore, that we’re currently witnessing and living through in America right now!

May the pending Congressional bills with treasury- bankrupting trillions of dollars-worth of bogus handouts to aligned-constituencies of those in power not be passed into law.  And may American voters successfully support substantial political change back to real-world conservative thought and governance in the national election of November 2022!!