Cam Hui has a post that shows how the US has lost a great deal of competitiveness in the leading edge industries, and how that has impacted the labor force. His data show that Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates, from a decade ago, predicted over $2.75 million new jobs would be created in the US to date. The actual number is negative.
I have been thinking for some time that US economic, research, and labor policy should focus on an area where there is a great competitive advantage to be exploited, and ready markets in the future: food production. In short, we should be trading high quality, safe and nutritious food for energy and finished goods. There is quite a bit of speculation out there about an impending food crisis. It’s difficult to evaluate, but there is no denying that the funding for food supply R&D, in both the public and private sectors, has been down on a global basis. Food is the ultimate consumer staple. America can be the world’s bread basket.