Victory Motorcycle Forum banner

1 - 20 of 43 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
What follows reads as political so if offended, save yourself some agita and move on. Pop warns you it's a rant but prefers to think of it as a history based rant laced with invective.

Elsewhere is a thread that has included a recent WSJ article about how less Americans tinker and that this non tinkering trend might not be a good thing. I was going to post this there in response but even Pop agrees that this post is too much BS for a motorcycle thread no matter that practically all motorcycle threads careen into a ditch sooner or later.

So... rant on.

I will not waste my time pointing out the culprits here. Read a little if you are interested. You can start your research with the WSJ since the culprits are heroes of the "Journal" that is now publishing "Gee Whiz, what happened to manufacturing?" pieces like they never saw THAT coming.

The late 70's and 80's brought a whole bunch of festering wounds that our gummint coyly called regulatory trade advances. These broadsides at the wallet of the American working stiff had actually been bounced around DC since post WW2 but took that long to get enough money lined up behind them. I mean the plans involved crushing several key homegrown industries. That was a hard pitch in the post war boom. You need to convince asshats like Roger Smith and John Welch and a pantheon of manufacturing titans to pull up stakes and move it out the door. Turning those battleships takes a lot of muscle and time.

Finally, they murdered non factory farming, wiped out textiles, turned forest products and mining from a turnkey to a commodities export business, and made heavy industry extinct nationwide. The liars in the beltway spent years bringing up how much better off the middle class was going to be in the wake of globalization. I still don't know how we missed that they were lying to our faces. I mean, their mouths were moving. A generation of kids grew up listening to that gibberish and now they are adults and thoroughly propagandized and we wonder why nobody tinkers?

These kids tell their kids that if they don't get into college they will be stuck in some dead end job banging nails or wiring condos. I know what good carpenters and electricians make. As dead ends go, they ain't bad.

We bought this line of crap lock, stock and barrel. We elected (and continue to elect) shitheels who gave up the golden goose for the promise of eggs. Our kids think that stuff from overseas is cool and better. Hell, WE think that stuff from overseas is cool and better. When was the last time you saw Mom and Apple Pie tattooed on somebody? A lot less often than some I Ching script I betcha.

It's done. Horses are out the barn.

Good thing for Pop. I tinker. People pay me handsomely to do it, like it's friggin alchemy or something. Problem is that it's a bad thing for my country, much more of a poison than arguments about border security or guns or clean air or which liar, the blue one or the red one is going to perpetuate this scam for another generation while the rest of the world picks our bones.

All the crap on tv and the pissing and moaning about rights, that's all fluff. They stand by while we wallow in the side issues to our hearts content as long as it continues to distract us from what they have managed to implement. Smarter men than Pop have said again and again "Follow the money". Well, the money , the real money, doesn't care about guns or who marries who or the price or tea in China. On second thought they do care about the price of tea in China.

They are running out the clock on the ones of us remaining who remember what was. Once we're dead then the historical record will be free to be expunged to eliminate reports of the positive effect of having been the most powerful manufacturing dynamo of all time.

But here's the kicker. The interwebs, 3D printing, technologies yet to evolve. That horse is out of the barn too. Those treacherous pricks that tried to milk the last penny out of us by getting us to fall for this "everybody gets the same cheap flatscreen" mentality didn't see the tech revolution coming at the pace it has. Some kid with the computer skills that he built up by playing with pooters instead of building soapbox racers or treehouses, that kid will design better flatscreens than what GE or Sanyo rams down our throats, other kids will buy the design from the guy on the interwebs with bitcoins, and churn them out for their own use for the price of the raw materials into their 3D printers. That there is globalization and it puts the squeeze on the big money plan to corner the markets on everything.

It doesn't restore our manufacturing glory but at least it will keep those scumbags that orchestrated the end of that glory on their toes. They will try to control the data. The data will move out of their control. They will try to control the raw goods. Mom and Pop providers will enter the void either above the table or under it. They will continue to force feed us the model of finding the lowest economic impact to mass manufacturing while better products are being made onesy twosy in garages and basements right back here in the good old US of A and and just about everywhere else for that matter.

The guy that printed that gun printed a primitive, practically unusable prototype. That's invention. That's tinkering. I said before that real money isn't scared of guns. They aren't, except that one. Not for what it can do but for what it means. Guns won't take them down but printing might. Ben Franklin would give that a thumbs up.

Pop won't live to see it but there's a good chance that my grandkids are going to stick it to the man.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,632 Posts
What follows reads as political
My only comments would be:

a) You can rest assured that gov't didn't just dream up those regulatory trade advances. Much more likely that asshats like Welch and Smith sold our elected officials on the idea so they could profit from slave labor and lack of regulations. Don't get confused as to who is the dog and who is the tail, corporations rule Amurica. Just look to the recent Citizens United case if you're in need of evidence.

b) I'm still a little skeptical about this printing revolution. You may be able to create a lot with it, but I wouldn't count on a kid whose greatest achievement is high score at the latest Atari game being able to out engineer the Asians at developing complex devices. Anyway, even if they could, there's more to business than simply making the product. And if some kid gets proficient at making highly desirable products, they will end up hiring a bunch of people to run the business and incorporate it just like everyone else. See Jeff Zuckerberg.

There is nothing new in the world except the history you do not know.

- Harry S. Truman
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
545 Posts
As a young man raised by an older man, I was taught there was nothing I couldn't do. I've lived by that rule and am raising my children the same way. They continue to surprise me every day with what they teach themselves. That is tinkering in my book and makes me proud. My father didn't get past the 6th grade and did more in his time than an Ivy grad student ever thought he could. I don't know what the future holds for me or mine but I have not given up on the cause.

"We the people of these United States of America"

2000 V92SC in Middle, TN
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,292 Posts
I was a poor kid. Had plenty of video games growing up, but never the cutting-edge stuff. Didn't own a computer of my own till I was 23. Still can barely use a fax machine. Have a smartphone mostly for google maps.

Thing was, because I was a poor kid, I had to learn to fix stuff.

As a child, if my bike had a flat tire or broken chain, I better damn well fix it myself, cuz it'd be 3 or 4 years before a new bike was going to appear under a Christmas tree.

As a teenager, if I wanted to drive into town and hang out with my friends, I'd better figure out what's wrong with the ol' Cheyenne (affectionately called The Blue Torpedo) and get it straightened out.

As an adult, I typically end up paying someone to fix something for me once. After I part with that money knowing full well I coulda learned to do it my damn self, that's the last time I pay for that service. People will ask me who they should take their car to when it breaks down, and I typically offer to help them with it myself. If it ain't in my wheelhouse (electrical, ECM stuff, or automatic transmissions which near as I can tell run on witchcraft) I don't even know what to tell 'em because I haven't paid someone to work on my car in 10 years.

Things are gearing up like that for the bikes too. Haven't been riding real long, but I'm quietly and slowly acquiring the tools necessary to make trips to the dealer a thing of the past. Have lots of tools already, but some of the screwy motorcycle specific stuff is hard to just pick up at Harbor Frieght or Wally World. But I'll get there.

I take pride in my mechanical knowledge and skill. and the fact that I can put my hands on something and fix it makes me dying breed.

And those fellas who've dreamed up that 3D printer are pretty impressive. and maybe it'll keep manufacturing on some kind of life support. But I don't think they're craftsmen. They're skillful, sure. Hell, I don't have any idea how that stuff works. But those guys don't use their hands to make that stuff. Odds are if you placed something they created in front of them, said it was broken, and told 'em to fix it, their heads would probably explode. They make the computer do it for them, which is a set of skills I don't possess and it surely deserves some credit. But I fear the day computers do everything for us and no one knows how to do anything themselves. That's what your example of the 3D printer represents to me.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
And those fellas who've dreamed up that 3D printer are pretty impressive. and maybe it'll keep manufacturing on some kind of life support. But I don't think they're craftsmen. They're skillful, sure. Hell, I don't have any idea how that stuff works. But those guys don't use their hands to make that stuff. Odds are if you placed something they created in front of them, said it was broken, and told 'em to fix it, their heads would probably explode. They make the computer do it for them, which is a set of skills I don't possess and it surely deserves some credit. But I fear the day computers do everything for us and no one knows how to do anything themselves. That's what your example of the 3D printer represents to me.
The hunter could not figure out what value the farmer saw in tilling dirt.
The potter didn't think much of the tinsmith taking his market.
The smith thought those fools making machines that people had to pedal were doing the devils work.

I can't mend a clay pot worth a (pardon the expression) tinkers damn, nor can I shoe a horse or sod a roof. My tool box is fairly full of gizmos, not a one of which can I employ to decently fletch an arrow.

Point? Well, my tools and my tinkering fit a time and a place and the things I can do without thinking twice might as well be black magic to my predecessors and will likely seem anachronistic to my childrens children.

I see a direct lineage from banging flint for fire to hitting the print button to make a firearm. It's all the economies of utilizing time and resources and the capacity to invent.

If my great grandpa were presented with a broken harness he would repair that leather until there was more hide holding the harness together than the horse.

If my battery won't hold a charge I'll run a series of tests to pinpoint the culprit, maybe clean it up if my investigation allows or maybe buy a replacement for whatever is faulty and maybe buy a better replacement so it doesn't happen again.

If my successor prints a goomus say gom that doesn't improve his bimbling, he might get a better printer or better media or tweak the program or reverse the polarity of his flux capacitor.

He's fixing the problem. Not like I am inclined to fix, but then my way of fixing is unlike my grand dads.

Somewhere in time somebody said that the Davidsons, the Hendees and the Wright brothers were not craftsmen, that Daimler was making something that would end up shriveling our legs up from lack of use.

C'mon Luciferiad, this old world already has ample flat earthers. Tomorrow is going to be... shiny.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,533 Posts
I believe you are absolutely right. We're shooting ourselves in the foot. I've been part of the problem. Now I'm not young but not old...34 actually. I was born a tinkerer. I took remote controlled cars apart as a kid to see what made them tick. Took moms vacuum apart before I was 10 to see what made it tick. Dad bought one of them Commodore PC 64 puters (which ran on DOS not windows) and I tinkered with it. I'm glad he bought that because that's where I make my money now...in an office on a computer. Anyway, dad was an auto mechanic by trade so I learned young. Pulled my first engine at 12. Did a complete engine build on my own without help as a young teen. I've worked construction, done plumbing, worked as an automotive mechanic too. Built computers, got into electronics and know my way around stereos, TV's etc. My point is I've learned to do everything, fix everything on my own...or at least try. Where I went wrong is fixin' things for my boys instead of teaching them. I've not devoted the time to show them how to tinker and they've become dependant on dad fixin' it. They are both 12 years old and they needed to replace the tubes in their bicycles. They bought the tubes and I took them to my toolbox and said "get to it". They didn't have a clue! They just looked at my wide eyed. That's when it dawned on me that I've failed. Them boys should be beyond repairing bicycles and start learning bigger repairs at that age. At 12 they are just now learning how to repair their bike tires. But from now on, their going to be getting their hands dirty.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,632 Posts
I think Adam Cramer from Philly Throttle is a man after your own heart Pop. Check out his interview posted on the show's Facebook page
https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10201190274348428&set=vb.405440182906925&type=3

Also found it on YouTube

Nice video, but I think the guy is a little confused. What he does is an art. What that has to do with the de-industrialization of America is unclear.

Will there be a next him to fix up bikes that nostalgic Baby Boomers will pay up for? Once the Baby Boomers are gone, probably not so many.

Seems to me that this guy is as upset about today's throw away products as anything. There must be divine-like rewards in giving old machines everlasting life...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
To steal an old saw" There is none so blind as those that will not see."

There is, between artist and mechanic a third and more predominant type, artisan. Cramer falls into that category neatly. At a glance he is much closer to the mechanic side of the equation than the artist side. He says as much.

Anyway so what it focuses on old stuff. The well spring of new stuff is old stuff. There is nothing "new" under the sun. All new stuff is rooted in old stuff and as we willingly discard our understanding of antiquated methods it is loss of knowledge and aptitude. I can go to any antique meet and see running antique bikes that offer mechanical or electromechanical solutions that are flat amazing. Things I see in modern bikes that are considered revolutionary had identifiable predecessors built in some little shed in Dayton or Duluth 100 years ago.

Working on old stuff is art? Nope, not buying it. Guys that rehab covered bridges go on to post and beam which is being considered a resurgent tech in hurricane zones. Dirigibles are getting a fresh look as cheap trucking. It may yet come to pass that motorcycles find themselves being pressed into service as delivery vehicles and livery and emergency.

I don't think that "We're number 1" means squat if some kid in Bangalore with a ball peen and a chunk of an old Whirlpool washer skin can pound out a better repop of a Royal Enfield fender than my grandsons. Not that they don't eclipse his skills in other arenas, but the saying isn't "We're number 1 in some stuff but other stuff that appears to be less marvelous we have decided to abandon on the gamble that those things won't reemerge as important moving forward." In the meantime Enfield repops match old Trumps and Matchless which look like old Harleys and old Harleys look like new Harleys and Bobi Ashramam from Bangalore is fielding internet orders and counts on EBay to satisfy his payroll and get him the scratch to pay for the villa in Palma de Mallorca.

I started my career path as a millwright apprentice. That is, I was being mentored and trained by skilled mechanics to do precise assembly and alignment of big manufacturing machines that must meet critical tolerances in order to operate. Today becoming a millwright apprentice requires two things, finding enough millwrights to mentor apprentices, and finding enough work that requires the skills that a millwright possesses. Well, good luck in a no manufacturing nation with catching those unicorns.

It does not mitigate the value or the skill of millwrighting. Nations all over the world are using American companies that field millwrights. That would be other nations that are not America. That would be the Bobi's in Bangalore building new manufacturing to employ Indian workers to make stuff to sell to Americans who marvel at the skill it must have taken to fashion that fender, skills we decided we didn't need anymore because we were going to the moon. So that worked out OK.

There is still much profit to be wrung out of a ball peen or a Whitworth spanner or a capstan. Art feeds the families of dead artists. Manufacturing feeds the families of live artisans and mechanics.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,632 Posts
There is, between artist and mechanic a third and more predominant type, artisan. Cramer falls into that category neatly. At a glance he is much closer to the mechanic side of the equation than the artist side. He says as much.

Working on old stuff is art? Nope, not buying it.
Me changing the tire on a Victory is not art. Him using his creativity to fabricate parts for a machine that are no longer made seems to me to be an art.

Art feeds the families of dead artists. Manufacturing feeds the families of live artisans and mechanics.
True. And my guess is that in 20 years there will probably be a fair number of guys making a living restoring Honda Civics with coffee can exhausts. Progress marches on...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,292 Posts
True. And my guess is that in 20 years there will probably be a fair number of guys making a living restoring Honda Civics with coffee can exhausts. Progress marches on...
I think a part of my soul just died, Saddlebag.

I'm too young to be so old, but I'm afraid I don't see that shiny of a future, Pop (and it's anyone's guess why I didn't notice your reply on this thread 2 weeks ago). I see a future like that Pixar flick Wall-E: a society of unskilled and technology-dependent mongoloids.

The other day, one of my technicians was servicing an older Toyota pickup equipped with a 22R-E. That motor's got near-on legendary status for barely even needing to be maintained. Remember to change the oil in it every couple years, and you'll be just fine. Kid's been working auto service for about a year, and was working with another tech who'd been at it for 3. Might be an endangered species, but like a Bald Eagle you still see a few 22R-Es in the wild and I know it couldn't have been the first one through the shop on either of their shifts.

Kid couldn't find the damn oil filter. Okay, fair enough, they're tucked up outta the way and out of sight in a dark, hot corner under the intake manifold. He used Google to locate the filter.

so what's wrong with that? Technology provided him with his answer, right? Sure, it showed him where to find the filter. But if he'd been paying attention for the last year, he'd have picked up that an oil filter can logically only be in a certain number of places, logically. You check those places. You think on your own, absorb what you learn while you work, you don't need damn Google.

Most importantly, his iPhone might've told him where to find that filter, but didn't tell him why it was there. And he didn't learn that because he didn't need to. That's what worries me. These 20-somethings got all the answers because the 40-somethings through 90-somethings figured it out and the 30-somethings gathered it up and put it on the internet. Knowing what and where might get you on down the road, but these younger guys are missing out on the how and why. And the how and why are the valuable part of knowledge.

These younger cats are living life like they're cheating on a test. All the answers, none of the knowledge. I think our ass is gonna get bit on that HARD.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,632 Posts
I think a part of my soul just died, Saddlebag.
There are so many disparate ideas going on in this thread it's hard to know where to start, but as always, I'm willing to give it a shot.

1. I, like Pop am an ardent opponent of the de-industrialization of the US.

2. If I were getting paid to get something done in a limited time, I'd use whatever got me to the answer the fastest too, even if I was capable of figuring it out.

3. I agree that we need more hands on workers, but until Americans see fit to pay them, their ranks probably won't increase greatly.

I didn't say I thought the video guy was confused because I disagree with his stance on our de-industrialization. I said it because he then started making it about himself. And what he does, while useful, honorable work, has nothing to do with our de-industrialization.

If we never make another product in America again and no one wants reconditioned relics, the video guy can still go make a comfortable living changing hoses and belts on Hyundais.

I agree that education has become too much about career success. While there are some jobs that benefit by the added education of a university degree, most don't and we as a society should get out of the mindset that the people who do them are losers. Last I heard, Americans owe more in student debt than in consumer debt. And for what?

Americans don't seem to raise an eyebrow at spending hundreds of dollars to watch grown men play with a ball for an hour or sing for a couple. But let a guy join a union and fight for a living wage for creating the wealth in America and suddenly he's the demonic face of US deterioration.

In the end it's a catch 22. Those without an education are very likely to be reeled in by the phony propaganda aimed at keeping a certain segment of society rich and powerful while keeping themselves poor and dumb. OTOH, if everyone gets an education, suddenly we are all too good to get our hands dirty. What's a country to do?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,296 Posts
Tears well up in this ol' repairman as I read these posts. When my father told me, in the throes of the Great Depression, "The only place you'll find a helping hand is at the end of your arm," I took that as Gospel and stood beside that clever, inventive and industrious man as he taught me skills and techniques I use to this day. I'm selling my repair business soon, but my customers rail against that, reminding me I'm a dying breed. Maybe.
I like to say that anything that was put together can be taken apart and put back together again--as long as it wasn't glued. It seems to me, there are more out there who can put things together than can take them apart, fix 'em and put 'em back together like new or better. Too many, way younger than me, spending their lives with some illuminated screen in front of them, not knowing which end of the screwdriver is the handle. Then there's Justin.
Justin was just graduated from high school and has joined the Marine Corps. After boot camp, he's signed up to go to Diesel mechanics training--smart boy that Justin. That'll set him up for all his working life and I don't think I need to explain to any of you here why that is. But Justin is different from his contemporaries in that he dislikes computers and those things with screens, making Justin like a lot of those who are posting in this thread. Here's to the Justins of this world...may you live long and prosper.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
5,632 Posts
But Justin is different from his contemporaries in that he dislikes computers and those things with screens, making Justin like a lot of those who are posting in this thread. Here's to the Justins of this world...may you live long and prosper.
Justin may be in for a big surprise when he finds out vehicles are computer controlled and diagnosed nowadays.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,296 Posts
Justin may be in for a big surprise when he finds out vehicles are computer controlled and diagnosed nowadays.
That's no surprise to Justin. He just doesn't want to have to breathe, eat, sleep and live with the damn things.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,292 Posts
There are so many disparate ideas going on in this thread it's hard to know where to start, but as always, I'm willing to give it a shot.

1. I, like Pop am an ardent opponent of the de-industrialization of the US.
So am I. Our reliance on foreign goods and services is terrifying. Not that I believe that those goods and services are sub-par just because they're not domestic, but because I wonder if our nation could stand on its own two feet if it were required.

And the bit about my soul was in reference to my seething hatred of the "hot-rod-Honda" culture.

2. If I were getting paid to get something done in a limited time, I'd use whatever got me to the answer the fastest too, even if I was capable of figuring it out.
There's nothing wrong with getting your answer as fast as possible. My point was that technology--i.e. smartphones, Google, Wikipedia and what have you--allow anyone to have those answers without needing to know WHY it is the answer. And if you're performing a trade, even one as menial as an oil change on a '95 Toyota Tacoma, knowing the WHY is just as important as knowing the answer. The young man in question has a rather nasty reputation for having all the answers but none of the reasons anyway...I thought he made a good example.

3. I agree that we need more hands on workers, but until Americans see fit to pay them, their ranks probably won't increase greatly.
You're not joking, and I mentioned in another thread how difficult it was to get anyone to work for us at $8.50/hour. I can't get the guys with experience because we can't pay 'em worth a damn (starting pay with experience caps out around $10.50). I can't get the young guys because they don't want to do it. And the ones I do find land in one of three categories:

1) great at the job, hard worker, real future in automotive service...therefor gets a REAL job in automotive service at a competitor making 25-50% more.

2) Lots of experience, good at the job, personal life a complete mess. Has lots of experience but stretched across 12 different jobs over the last 10 years. Awesome when he shows up for work, but whether he will is anyone's guess.

3) Took the first thing that came along. Shows up for work on time but no interest in the job. Learns the procedures but doesn't learn the trade. Tends to break things due to general lack of interest in the business. Typically moves along in 6 months and has to be replaced.

In the end it's a catch 22. Those without an education are very likely to be reeled in by the phony propaganda aimed at keeping a certain segment of society rich and powerful while keeping themselves poor and dumb. OTOH, if everyone gets an education, suddenly we are all too good to get our hands dirty. What's a country to do?
I think that's a pretty astute observation...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
851 Posts
Nice video, but I think the guy is a little confused. What he does is an art. What that has to do with the de-industrialization of America is unclear.

Will there be a next him to fix up bikes that nostalgic Baby Boomers will pay up for? Once the Baby Boomers are gone, probably not so many.

Seems to me that this guy is as upset about today's throw away products as anything. There must be divine-like rewards in giving old machines everlasting life...
Actually I think you're confused. The video is against the de-industrialization of America; not the lack of vintage bike repair shops.

I see how what he does could be considered art in a way but that is not the point of the video. Instead he points out that American youth lack a "can do" spirit. At 1:06 he then goes on and gives specific examples from his personal experience, they are accents to his point, not the focus of it.

I also understand that the workforce evolves with demand. For example TV Repairmen. Growing up I remember a guy coming by the house with a big tool box 3/4 of the way filled with electron tubes. I went to a Vocational High School in electronics. By then there were mainly three parts to a TV; the Picture Tube, Flyback Transformer, and Motherboard. For the most part the only thing you would replace was the motherboard because if it were anything else the cost was so high that it made more sense to just buy a new TV. Now the entire TV is pretty much disposable for the same reason. We did do some circuit board troubleshooting just for the experience but honestly it would cost more to pay a guy to troubleshoot the board than to just replace it.

When I first came in the Navy we taught all Electronics technicians basic electronics and circuit theory. Now we only tech that level to the technicians who work on the circuit cards. The ones who work on the airplanes pretty much learn what every High School physics class taught about electronics and send them on their way to swap boxes. The lucky ones learn how to repair wires. The problem is without the basic troubleshooting skills we no longer teach them, they have a hard time figuring out what is wrong after they change the box and the system still doesn't work.

I use to change my own oil but now I can have it done for about the same cost and I don't have to worry about getting under the car or disposing of the hazmat. I still do my own oil changes on my bike but that is more a labor of love vice necessity. I'd say the majority of drivers today CAN'T change their own oil even if they wanted to because they lack the basic skills need to do the job.

The whole point is even though we don't need a TV repairman to come to our homes, even though we can buy something cheaper than have it repaired, or pay to have someone else do the work for what it would cost to do it ourselves, there comes a time when it goes beyond a choice in vocation to the loss of a skill set.

On your follow on post you mentioned pay. There is one aspect of that you didn't mention. Not only are Americans more willing to pay people who play games for a living higher wages than laborers, they are also willing to pay them more than the people who teach their kids, or protect their property. I'd be willing to wager that they know and tip their waitress' better than the teachers who spend more time with their kids then they do themselves. Our society rewards what it finds value in. IMO our society's values are pretty screwed up.

Edit: I turned on the boob tube right after I posted this to see a commercial for Honey Boo Boo. There is another example of how screwed up we as a society are. Granted I've never watched the show and only judge it by what I see in commercials and what I hear from others. But here we are rewarding a child for doing something they should be punished for doing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,208 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
I use to change my own oil but now I can have it done for about the same cost and I don't have to worry about getting under the car or disposing of the hazmat. I still do my own oil changes on my bike but that is more a labor of love vice necessity. I'd say the majority of drivers today CAN'T change their own oil even if they wanted to because they lack the basic skills need to do the job.
GL, Pop goes with the notion that SB can argue practically any side of a issue. Provocateur. Provocation is a good thing. Stirs up the sediment in the bottom of the stream and that's where the nuggets are.

At the top of the page I linked a site run by Mike Rowe, of Dirty Jobs fame. It's a little glitzy by Pops standards but Rowe is a TV guy so I guess he can't help himself. Incidentally he hosts shows that appear on the same network as Honey Boo Boo and Mountain Monsters and Naked and Afraid and so forth but I imagine whores can't choose who rents the next room so I won't blame Rowe.

I do like the guy and when he appeared as himself on tv hawking the website, I watched. His point, and I absolutely agree, is that we have not only thrown overboard a huge chunk of profit by moving manufacturing offshore but at the same time and as part of that plan we have hammered our kids that success is measured by letters at the end of your name and that hard work and blue collar skills are for losers. We have literally insisted that our children are failing if they don't get bound up in ridiculous student loan debt to get a sheepskin that may not be worth the imported Staples paper it's printed on.

It dings me all the time. When I started in the construction trades I was in the company of giants. You could drop 50 men in a hole with a pile of iron and a box of tools and they would build stuff. There was a preferred bunch of iron and tools but any iron and tools would result in product. Now, if one thing is missing it grinds to a halt. Not enough of any one widget and it folds up like a house of cards. In Singapore my bud is building world class biotech facilities with crews that take a truckload of bamboo and in no time have enough scaffold to erect steel. They use to make those facilities here and cost was not the issue. The issue was that an American project is a chain of delays and delays are unacceptable in a race to market.

We made our people stupid. The DNA is in them to excel but we beat it out of them and made them believe that because they didn't get a poli sci degree from a big ten that somehow that means that they are waste product. I'm saying that if I broke a hammer handle I used a wrench for a hammer or I welded a hunk of pipe to the head and I kept banging. Now they look at me like I am a hammer supply. They won't make do because safety has told them that field repairing tools or substituting is unsafe. They won't weld a piece of pipe on it because it hurts their wrist. That and they don't weld. So that's it. No more hammering. No hammering American workers standing in a hole while Singaporeans are building bamboo scaffolds out of a hole.

If the resulting inability to innovate and change horses midstream were an expected and planned consequence of all this propagandizing the value of college then that would be one thing. But the architects of that plan are not the brightest bulbs themselves and this mess is the posterchild for unintended consequences. While unemployment numbers continue to dog us, good jobs go unfilled because we're too damn dumb or uninterested to pass a pre employment exam to be diesel mechs or slump testers or controls techs.

Show me Americans that can fix their own damn hammers and they will pulverize the bedrock, hammer together the forms of the foundations, build the walls of the buildings and put the nails in those walls that the sheepskin getters want to hang their paper on.

But first you got to tell those kids that swinging a hammer is good work and knowing one hammer from the other and being able to keep a hammer together is part of swinging one.
 
1 - 20 of 43 Posts
Top