2009-01-22

Putting your money where your mouth is: Made in the USA

(To all those that may be visiting from The Corner Office Blog, thanks for stopping by, I hope that I don’t disappoint)

So fresh after inaugural day, you are now ready to do what you can to help America . Specifically you are ready to help do something about that economy you hear so much about on the TV, but Obama hasn’t told the public just how to do that yet. Well MJ is here to save the day, I am suggesting an oldie but a goodie which is to BUY AMERICAN.

Yes buy American. You remember that place, purple mountain majesties, golden plains, NASCAR, NFL, and the like. It’s still there and those people still need those jobs, and what better way to help than to help your fellow countrymen (or countrywoman for that matter) than to purchase their stuff.

So now energized with the thought of supporting the good old USA , you are ready to head down to Walmart and thoughtfully purchase anything with a big eagle on it, you fly out the door, pocketbook in hand. Well hold on there partner, besides shampoo and dog food you may not see a whole lot of goods that are American made there. What follows is just a starting list of items I have found over the years that I know are made here in the US (not Usa , Japan ).

Clothing: Melanzana (http://www.melanzana.com/)

Like fleece, like high quality clothing, like mountain-style hippies but not sure how they make their money? Try the clothes made by the fine folks at Melanzana All sorts of thoughtful cuts, sizes, and materials (as long as those materials are Polarfleece) pack there online store. Made in Leadville , Colorado , the highest elevation town in the US , by people who want to stay warm and exercise all year round. I have actually seen the store, met the people, and seen how they produce the clothes. I can honestly tell you that fabric comes in sheets, cut by human hands, and sown by regular machines. Prices are reasonable, the clothing holds up beautifully, and everything fits warm and comfortably.

Appliances: Whirlpool, Maytag, Jenn-Air, KitchenAid, Amana

One company that hasn’t left the US quite yet for cheaper shores is Whirlpool, maker of all the brands above and more (most of Sears Kenmore stuff as well). A few years ago Maytag / Amana was for sale and Whirlpool bought them up to help protect the American territory from foreign (read as Chinese) suppliers flooding the market with cheap branded products. Smart plan, unfortunately Whirlpool has had to reduce the workforce somewhat in past year. However, most of their product is made here in the US, so you can wash your clothes, wash your dishes, and mix your cakes knowing full well that you bought something made by a neighbor and helped with what you could to keep their jobs. Not to mention that the products are well made, durable, and parts are available cheaply at your local parts distributor (Sears Outlet anyone).

Hand Tools: Craftsman

Some people prefer Snap-On or MAC, which is fine, but most of the public doesn’t have access to those brands. However one brand that we all have access to is Craftsman. Sears and now Kmart have access to the best value hand tools out there. Yes Craftsman, the same tools your grand-pappy repaired the tractor with, is still available and the hand tools are still proudly made in the USA (by the Williams Tool company owned by Danaher and also makes Matco tools). Yes some of the electric tools are made overseas (most are unfortunately), but the hand tools are still made here. The best part is the lifetime warranty on everything. If you wake up and decide your ½ combination wrench just doesn’t look like it’s good enough anymore, you can skip on in to Sears, not even make up a good lie, and exchange it for a bright shiny new one. Eat that Stanley .

Lawn equipment: John Deere

Nothing runs like a Deere, and no company was a bigger pain in my @$$ than those of the green and yellow. They have ridiculously high production standards that they hold their suppliers to from tires to paint. So while they may cost more than average lawn companies, I know for a fact that they are giving you a long lasting, well made, high quality product that should last for a long time, and is well supported all across the US . They care about their product and it shows.

Drinks: Celestial Seasonings

I have actually toured the plant outside of Boulder , Colorado and seen how a business started by a local mountain biker is now a international brand with a large variety of pretty delicious teas. Pretty neat place, that does there part for the environment, commission independent artists (how do you think they get those neat labels), and package tasty drinks. I think it is the place where all the nice people in the world work (better there than annoying me at Whole Foods).

More:

Sure there is more: Purolator, Harley-Davidson, and Dexter-Russell com to mind. But I wanted to see if anyone else out there had some good suggestions for the common American public that wanted to share. If you have a company you know of or a product to pimp that is clearly US made drop a line in the comment box or drop me an email, we can only help each other out if we know what is available.

Take care and God Bless America .
(Waving Nixon peace gestures)

2 comments:

MJ @ Dyslexic Research said...

Added Melanzana to the list of approved DR businesses. I forgot to mention the fabric they use is Polartec, which is all made in the USA as well.

Anonymous said...

Mag-Lite
www.maglite.com

Proudly Made In Ontario California, USA!