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Comment Re:Seeing is believing (Score 1) 202

If solar panel lifetime is shorter than 15-20 years like you say, why do solar manufacturers offer warrantees for 25 years or more?

A sales trick? Only the original purchaser gets the warranty and they are likely to move before it fails or seriously degrades? Or the poster is using dated technical info, those LG panels might be quite different that what was manufactured a decade or so earlier. A friend considered going solar 10+ years ago and dug into the technical info and it wasn't quite cost effective back then. Today it probably is, but he moved from CA to WA.

Comment Need 3L not 1L ... (Score 1) 202

I have no idea where you're getting 300L a day. A human only needs around 1l of water a day to survive.

No, active adults need about 3L not 1L. So with this device producing about 2.8L it could sustain a single person. Things get complicated with activity levels and climate, and water in food counts towards the total.

The 1L per day figure is life raft level rationing where you are sedentary and either rescued from the sea in a few days or likely to die so additional water is unlikely to change the outcome.

Comment Re: "We" are forcing quality down ... (Score 1) 66

Businesses don't get to decide if they compete on value or price. Consumers make that choice for them. Business follows where consumers lead them.

The point you are missing is that US consumers now consider environmental impact a value, for at least five decades they have not considered domestic/local manufacture a value. That can change, domestic/local could become a value in the mind of the consumer. This conversation is not about if some value exits, it is about the specific value of domestic/local manufacture.

Comment Re: "We" are forcing quality down ... (Score 1) 66

I'm not sure you are getting my point. My point is that consumers demonstrated a preference for something, a consideration other than the lowest price. Manufacturers responded with products matching that consumer consideration. Consumers need to make domestic/local production one such consideration. As consumers rewarded companies that offshored, they can reverse their behavior and reward companies that produce domestically. Manufacturers will respond.

Comment Re: "We" are forcing quality down ... (Score 1) 66

Sure, people will buy the cheapest thing if there is no compelling reason to buy the more expensive thing.

The compelling reason is their own economic security, their job prospects. As the other poster refers to, in other countries the people better understand this and do have a bias towards domestic goods. It is something they consider. The problem is we don't. In the 1970s there was a popular bumper sticker, "Save a Job, Buy American". Back then people couldn't imagine the offshoring that would come. Now people should have a better appreciation of this phrase. The people in the other countries have often had their own bad times and already learned this lesson.

Comment Re:"We" are forcing quality down ... (Score 1) 66

Sure, there are always exceptions. And the good side of globalization is bringing in high quality or specialized/new goods that are not normally available. However over the last 50 years a huge amount of low quality imports have displaced higher quality domestics and that was due to consumer based decisions.

I want to stress that I am referring to a 50 year process, not just today's situation. Although the trend continues, and more importantly the trend is reversible IFF consumers show a preference for domestic/local.

Comment Re: "We" are forcing quality down ... (Score 1) 66

Walmart doesn't manufacture products. Walmart can't sell you an American made version of a Samsung TV if Samsung doesn't make them!

That does not change the fact that when consumers do have a choice they generally choose low cost import.

Nor does it change the fact that 45 years ago consumers did have a choice in TVs and chose the cheap import. Again, we're talking about a trend that has been at work for at least 50 years.

Comment Re:"We" are forcing quality down ... (Score 1) 66

Poor(er) people think that way. If you're rich, you have the luxury of getting what you want, and not having to have the cheaper stuff; of not having to choose between a good product or a good holiday/eating out more/clothing and feeding your kids. Poorer people don't have that choice. And it's not as if the elite/rich people are doing all they can to lift poor people out of poverty. I'd not blame "consumers" for trying to stretch their money as far as possible.

That the impoverished have a more valid reason does not change the fact that businesses that go the offshoring route are rewarded by consumers, that consumers drive offshoring process.

Also this was largely driven by the middle class, as most things are. Keep in mind that this trend started long ago when it was far more likely for a HS educated person to find a job that offered a living wage.

Comment Re: "We" are forcing quality down ... (Score 1) 66

What percentage of products are greenwashing and what percentage are effective and less troublesome for people and/or the environment I don't know. However that doesn't matter to my point, which is that people demonstrated a willingness to buy something using a metric other than the lowest price and manufacturers and retailers respond. It worked for "green". It could work for "domestic/local".

Comment Re:big map books of the local area are not that ea (Score 2) 158

big map books of the local area are not that easy to use in the car and what if you need 2-3 of them cover the drivers zone?

Well, we had three of those guidebooks (Thomas Bros) and we looked at them when not actively driving. Basically there was a planning stage where we created a mental map, it was enough or it was supplemented by notes (street names, distances, turns, etc.). Then once we had a plan we executed the plan. It really was not much trouble, two or three minutes up front before you started driving.

I confess that my guides are 10+ years old and move from trunk of old car to trunk of new car unused. Off in the wilds, there I moderate the wonders of handheld wireless computing. Drop GPS pins where we park and where we set up a campsite but navigate with printed maps and mechanical compasses, brushing up on that perishable skill, leaving the phone/gps in a waterproof bag turned off for backup.

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