One of the foremost issues in our country today, and one that paved the way for Donald Trump’s stunning election victory, is employment and jobs. Like him or not, Trump’s ability to reach working-class Americans and offer them what they believe to be a solution to the lack of jobs in their communities, was one of the key factors in winning certain swing states in America’s heartland. Whether Trump’s “solution” proves worthy is only something time will tell, but in a recent guest appearance on CNBC, a good friend of mine named Dan Arbess offered what I believe to be one of the most accurate, insightful, and well thought-out perspectives on the topic of employment and job creation in our country.
In order to ‘fix’ the jobs issues in our country, one must first correctly identify ‘the problem.’ ‘The problem’ as it was portrayed in the most recent election, was the loss of textile and manufacturing jobs over the last century in America. Statements like “Build it here!” and “China/Mexico are winning” became the face of a movement. But it isn’t free trade that deserves the blame for the loss of certain jobs, or even the competitive labor markets in China or Mexico–it’s technology. If you consider the laws of economics, and the fact that they don’t discriminate between race, gender, race or ethnicity, you will understand that China and Mexico are not immune to the disruption of technology and its impact on both the supply and demand curves that dictate economic activity and efficiencies. In order for Trump to be successful in fixing the issue of employment in our country, he must first accurately identify the problem, and that is the streamlining of labor intensive processes through the development of sophisticated technologies.