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Book industry chaos


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First, eek! Your link replaced this page for that page, so when I finished, I wondered what happened to this page. 😳

 

Second, hubby had this problem yesterday with a book he wanted to buy. It was an electronic book from a Christian distributor site, but they're so worried about print books they're freaking at any order. For a few minutes, he didn't think he could get the book for his ereader.

 

Third, this has been a problem for decades. I don't know how the rest of the world works, but slowly and steadily, the US has put most of our apples in China's basket for products. Someone had to take over manufacturing when this country left "the industrial age." From electronics to paper products to car parts to clothes, we want cheap, China does cheap, (since it's run by government not capitalism), and the house of cards fell apart when something broke a cog in the works. That something was COVID. We can no longer trust products from China, and they make most of our products.

 

Yes, it truly smashed the basket. Yes, it will take years to straighten out, but I do hope we learn something in the long run. "You get what you paid for." Not only did cheap products work worse, we also contributed to sweatshops, child labor, and a perpetually poor workforce. And, I'm not saying I didn't do the same thing. There wasn't another choice.

 

Hopefully, now there will be.

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15 minutes ago, Spaulding said:

First, eek! Your link replaced this page for that page, so when I finished, I wondered what happened to this page. 

 

Sorry. You must have encountered some hiccup. Didn't do that for me.

 

16 minutes ago, Spaulding said:

Second, hubby had this problem yesterday with a book he wanted to buy. It was an electronic book from a Christian distributor site

 

Yikes! That's getting really jumpy. 😵

 

And amen, Spaulding!

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I think Spike Lee's book not getting into port on time is not necessarily a bad thing.  😏

 

It would be interesting to see if paper shortages are affecting US on-demand printers. KDP hasn't posted anything regarding their POD service.

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4 hours ago, carolinamtne said:

Are there paper mills in the US any more? Or have they gone the way of other industries--to cheap foreign labor?

There are many of them.

 

There could be more if, you know, we allowed more to be built.

 

The state of Michigan harvests wood all of the time.  They sell It at auction.

 

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6 hours ago, carolinamtne said:

Then why the shortage? Why wait on China?

 

Price.  And the fact that they've pretty much driven US businesses out of the market.

 

It's the reason why Trump attempted tariffs on steel for both China, Canada, and Mexico.  China produces product often at a loss.  Sometimes the product is even defective.  But, because it is so cheap, people here buy it.  That drives manufacturers here - who have to compete with one another - out of business, thereby making us more reliant on China.

 

It's called "dumping."  Japan did it back in the 80s.  This is typical of state-controlled / state-subsidized economies.

 

When tariffs are applied direct, China then makes deals with our trading partners to dump their product with them, which  then gets sold to us below what it normally might sell.

 

The problem is, however, is when you are selling stuff below cost to keep your factories running, and your people employed, you start incurring internal debt.  This is what's happening with China now, in addition to the rampant corruption going on over there.  Ghost cities and production merely to produce is causing real problems in their economy, leading to long-running blackouts, and factories being reduced to running three days a week.

 

But, that only makes our situation worse, given that a lot of our factories have been shuttered due to trade deficits.

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2 hours ago, carolinamtne said:

That's why I wondered if we still have paper mills in this country.

 

I forgot to mention if that state and federal governments make it extraordinarily hard to start up new plant.  Environmental impact reports, regulators, environmental groups suing, and all of that.

 

So, it ain't entirely China.

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I do recall driving past paper mills in Maine that stank of sulphur from puip production. My brother reports that Atlantic salmon have been re-introduced in those rivers since the plants are shut down.

 

So,no, it's not all China. More money stays in the state from tourism.

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1 hour ago, EClayRowe said:

I do recall driving past paper mills in Maine that stank of sulphur from puip production. My brother reports that Atlantic salmon have been re-introduced in those rivers since the plants are shut down.

 

So,no, it's not all China. More money stays in the state from tourism.

 

Well, you can look at it this way, where would you prefer a paper mill to exist: China, that has next-to-no environmental protections, or in the US, where we have numerous, redundant environmental watchdogs?

 

Because, one way or another, that paper is getting produced.

 

In Michigan, there are several paper plants.  Our biggest problem isn't fish dying off, it's invasive species coming from - you guessed it - China.

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