Buy American - Christmas 2011

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seashanty's picture
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I received this email from a friend and I like it ... thought I'd pass it along.  I have no idea who writes these things.  With apologies to anyone who isn't in the U.S., but we have a real problem in this country of buying cheap, imported goods and driving our own companies out of business. 

 

American Christmas 2011 -- Birth of a New Tradition

As the holidays approach, the giant Asian factories are kicking into high
gear to provide Americans with monstrous piles of cheaply produced goods --
merchandise that has been produced at the expense of American labor.

Let's make this year different.
This year Americans will give the gift of genuine concern for other Americans. There is no longer an excuse that, at gift giving time, nothing can be found that is produced by American hands. Yes there is!

It's time to think outside the box, people. Who says a gift needs to fit in
a shirt box, wrapped in mass produced wrapping paper from China?


Everyone -- just about EVERYONE -- gets their hair cut. How about gift certificates
from your local American hair salon or barber?

Gym membership? It's appropriate for all ages who are thinking about some
health improvement.

Who wouldn't appreciate getting their car detailed? Small, American owned
detail shops and car washes would love to sell you a gift certificate or a
book of gift certificates.

Are you one of those extravagant givers who think nothing of plonking down
the Benjamines on a foreign made flat-screen? Perhaps that grateful gift
receiver would like his driveway sealed, or lawn mowed for the summer, or
driveway plowed all winter, or games at the local golf course.

There are a bazillion owner-run restaurants -- all offering gift
certificates. And, if your intended isn't the fancy eatery sort, what about
a half dozen breakfasts at the local breakfast joint where he/she actually eats?  Walk in and ask ... I bet the owner of that little joint would figure out a way for you to treat your friend to a breakfast or two on you.

Remember folks, this isn't about big National chains -- this is about supporting your home town Americans with their financial lives on the line to keep their doors open.

Remember that lovely night or two you spent at a bed and breakfast?  Not that hotel chain but a real inn, with genuine hospitality and amazing breakfasts made by real folks who say goodnight and slip into their own rooms instead of driving home to where they really live.  Wouldn't your friend love to stay there, too?  You know that place and that friend ... when you told them about it, their eyes lit up.  That innkeeper would really appreciate your business. 

How many people couldn't use an oil change for their car, truck or motorcycle, done at a shop run by the American mechanics?

Thinking about a heartfelt gift for mom or dad?  Wouldn't they LOVE the services of a local  "cleaning lady'" for a day? 

My computer could use a tune-up, and I KNOW I can find some young person who is struggling to get their repair business up and running.

OK, you were looking for something more personal.

Local crafts people spin their own wool and knit them into scarves. They make jewelry, and pottery and beautiful wooden boxes.

Plan your holiday outings at local, owner operated restaurants and leave
your server a nice tip. And, how about going out to see a play or ballet at
your hometown theatre?

Musicians need love too, so find a venue showcasing local bands.

Honestly, people, do you REALLY need to buy another ten thousand lights for the house? When you buy a five dollar string of lights, about fifty cents stays in the community. We love Christmas lights but if you have those kinds of bucks to burn, leave the mailman, trash guy or babysitter a nice BIG tip.

Before you buy that sweater as a gift, take a look at the label and see where it was made.  If not in the USA, please ASK the store owner where the American made sweaters are?  If they have none, take your dollars to the local craft fairs - you know the ones - they are held in church halls and community centers in cities and towns all over the country at this time of year.  You'll find local knitters and quilters who make beautiful items with their own hands. 

Speaking of clothing, check out the consignment stores that have sprung up all over.  Many of these stores have high quality American made clothes, some are vintage 1940's and 50's ~ and they are not falling apart.  Examine the stitching.  These things were sewn in American factories by American workers and they were made to last. 

Let's change things and get back to what Christmas is about.

Christmas is now about caring about US, encouraging American small businesses to keep plugging away to follow their dreams.

And, when we care about other Americans, we care about our
communities, and the benefits come back to us in ways we couldn't imagine.


THIS should be the new American Christmas tradition.

 


I hope you will share this idea.  And you will probably come up with some of your own.

This is a revolution of caring about each other,
and isn't that what Christmas is about?

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Joey Camb's picture
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Im just helping a shop local late night shopping event where I am. My Commercial Street project has 20 independent shops on one street (no chain stores) and we are doing late night opening, barbeque, mulled wine and a competition trying to encourage people to shop local and to realise what is under their noses!!!! was in the coffee shop on that street and was chatting with 2 old ladies said oh is this new isn't it nice? they have been there 2 years!

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Madeleine's picture
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We've found that it takes about 6 months for anyone to notice a new store. Guests will ask, 'Do you know where I can get...?' and I'll say, 'Sure, the store is right here...' and they walked by it 4 times already and never saw it.

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egoodell's picture
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camberleyhotelharrogate@yahoo.co.uk wrote:

Im just helping a shop local late night shopping event where I am. My Commercial Street project has 20 independent shops on one street (no chain stores) and we are doing late night opening, barbeque, mulled wine and a competition trying to encourage people to shop local and to realise what is under their noses!!!! was in the coffee shop on that street and was chatting with 2 old ladies said oh is this new isn't it nice? they have been there 2 years!

that sounds like a lot of fun!!!

Riki

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Have you heard of the 3/50 Project here in the States?  Here's a link to how to shop for the holidays:

http://www.the350project.net/keep_the_cheer_home.html

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egoodell's picture
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I think this should be rewritten on an international front. Every location should do the same to boost their economy and support their local businesses, not just USA.  We would all be better for it.

Riki 

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egoodell wrote:

I think this should be rewritten on an international front. Every location should do the same to boost their economy and support their local businesses, not just USA.  We would all be better for it.

Riki 

It is. It's been making the email circuit around here (Canadian instead of American). I see it less about protectionism and more about supporting small business. I hope the "Shop Small Business" movement continues to grow!

Joey Camb's picture
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we call it shop local its catchier. we do our best to support them cos we would have a very sad high street without them!

egoodell's picture
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camberleyhotelharrogate@yahoo.co.uk wrote:

we call it shop local its catchier. we do our best to support them cos we would have a very sad high street without them!

Yes here we call it Buy Local! We have so many artists and artisan farms and foodies here it's not hard!

RIki

Proud Texan's picture
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egoodell wrote:

Yes here we call it Buy Local! We have so many artists and artisan farms and foodies here it's not hard!

RIki

That's the only way you can truly "Buy American".     We live in a global economy.   Even if something is designated as "American Made"  it probably made of bits and pieces that were manufactured overseas.   

Toyota's are made in Kentucky.   Most of our supermarket produce comes from Chili and elsewhere.   Where do you think the components of the computer you're reading this on come from?    Reality check time.

 

egoodell's picture
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Proud Texan wrote:

egoodell wrote:

Yes here we call it Buy Local! We have so many artists and artisan farms and foodies here it's not hard!

RIki

That's the only way you can truly "Buy American".     We live in a global economy.   Even if something is designated as "American Made"  it probably made of bits and pieces that were manufactured overseas.   

Toyota's are made in Kentucky.   Most of our supermarket produce comes from Chili and elsewhere.   Where do you think the components of the computer you're reading this on come from?    Reality check time.

 

I think most realize this but there is a possiblity to try and shop for Christmas at local small shops to help the local economy. For example, here the Farmer's Markets have artists as well as food - and here we have wonderful hand made jams, jewelry, soaps, etc which are great gits and stocking stuffers. That's what I'm sending for Christmas. We have a local indian couple who sell a killer selection of curry sauces. Many many things to choose from!

gillumhouse's picture
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Toyota's are made in Kentucky.

Engines and transmissions are made in WV and shipped to Kentucky.

I need to rattle the cage of my WV potter again. The cups he made for me sold VERY well because each was signed by him with his location in WV also. I need MORE of them!

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Proud Texan said: Most of our supermarket produce comes from Chili and elsewhere.

As guess Texas is a great State - I didn't know you could make produce from chili!  Is that the Texas variety without beans?  harharhar....

 

Proud Texan's picture
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Samster wrote:

Proud Texan said: Most of our supermarket produce comes from Chili and elsewhere.

As guess Texas is a great State - I didn't know you could make produce from chili!  Is that the Texas variety without beans?  harharhar....

 

 We just put beans in our Chile.  (smart ass.)

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  Just yanking your chain, PT.  I lived in Austin for 8 years and my son went to college in West TX. 

Arks's picture
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egoodell wrote:

...here we call it Buy Local!

Does Walmart count as local? (Not in my book, it doesn't!)

Our speaker yesterday at the Rotary Club was a young man whose factory job headed south to Mexico 7 years ago, so at age 25 he started making glass beads and selling them on the Internet.

Five years ago he opened a store downtown selling jewelry made from the beads, and selling pottery he learned to make. In January he's adding glass blowing, all done where people can watch his wife and him doing it in the shop. Just a perfect example of the kind of thing "buy local" fosters. I love it.

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egoodell wrote:

camberleyhotelharrogate@yahoo.co.uk wrote:

we call it shop local its catchier. we do our best to support them cos we would have a very sad high street without them!

Yes here we call it Buy Local! We have so many artists and artisan farms and foodies here it's not hard!

RIki

DROOL...

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 Sounds like a plea for a B&B gift certificate blog article (hint hint).  

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