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Ron Cruger
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Unemployment in this country hovers around the ten percent figure. Some states, where there used to be factories, farms and food processing facilities have an even higher incidence of those out of work. 
          The government is pouring billions of dollars in attempts to find proper employment for these millions who do not currently find themselves on a company payroll.
          We can use American’s tax money to put people to work building libraries, bridges, dams and highways until the cows come home, as the government did in the 1930s, but we’re not going to get out of this unemployment mess until our citizens get a paycheck from real companies, not the government.
          For more than a decade now our country’s factories have been shutting down, only to open again in some foreign land as our workers line up for welfare assistance.
          Yes, there are other reasons for our unemployment statistics. Namely, the financial crisis the world found itself in a year or two ago, but much of our nation’s problems would lessen if more Americans were put on the company payroll, earning their own way (and pride) by the sweat of their efforts.
          In 2008 I conducted a very unscientific survey of where items in our local Wal Mart, Penneys, Target, Coldwater Creek and Marshall’s were made. The results were surprising. Scores of items in each store originated in foreign factories. America was sending its work overseas in order to produce lower prices for American buyers at the same time we were adding to our unemployment rolls.
          (You can find that column re-printed under the title “Wal-Mart nation,” on this page).
          The other day, while shopping at our local, American- based specialty grocery market I picked up a plastic bag of mixed vegetables, noticing they originated in Belgium. Continuing, I checked another plastic bag filled with frozen scallops which came from France.
          Intrigued, I pressed on and randomly checked on the originations of a number of food products.
          Remember that our government’s U.S.D.A. is not set up to inspect foods originating in foreign countries.
          Some random findings; Avocados, bell peppers, asparagus, spinach from Mexico. Pineapple pieces from Costa Rica. Rice, barley, risotto from Italy. Fruit juice, lamb chops from New Zealand. Carrots and beans from France. Edame from Thailand. Oatmeal from Canada. Langostino tails from Chile. A seafood blend from Thailand. Salmon from Canada. Sashimi from Singapore. Mahi Mahi from Peru. Naan bread from India. Mushroom risotto from Italy. Curried rice from Denmark. Pizza from Italy. Flat bread from France.
          Every once in a while, as I checked the food products, I came across a product bearing the words – “Made in the U.S.A.” Nice to see. 
          Waiting in the check out line I noticed the display for candy Easter eggs. They came from Canada.