Presidential Economics

The Cost of An All-American iPhone

iPhones and global supply chains
Comments (2)
  1. The most important issue not mentioned is regulation and NINBYism. If Apple wanted to put a 100,000 employee manufacturing business anywhere in California, the permit time alone would be 5 years or more. In that time, the market window for the product would have changes and someone who could respond to the market faster would own the business, not Apple.

    If Apple wants to stay in business, it must go outside the US to respond fast enough to keep up with the rapidly changing markets. When you are talking about actually building something in the US, you enter the world of bureaucratic regulatory reality where every one of the agencies wants to show their power and significance by saying NO. Just the traffic studies, environmental studies, hazardous waste analysis, etc. or even getting tenant improvement permits for existing buildings can take years.

    This is why we have huge innovation in all areas of science and tech. but only have decent employment growth in the “permissionless” sectors of the economy like design, software, marketing, etc. that has created most of Silicon Valley’s wealth. Unlike past technology revolutions whose creative destruction put millions of stable boys out of work while creating manufacturing jobs for those workers in areas unvisualized, unregulated, uncontrolled at the time, this revolution is being prevented from creating jobs for the non-educated elite by our government bureaucracy and activist.

    It has taken 12 years and counting to get “permissions” to build a desalinization plant in Huntington Beach, Ca to convert seawater into fresh water. That is 12 years of highly paid government bureaucrats, lawyers, planners and experts but no jobs for the average workers who will actually build, operate and maintain the plant.

  2. John Hall says:

    You can’t provide a link to the original?

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