FTC: Made In The USA Comments Concerning Christina Groth--P894219
TO: Elaine Colis, FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION
Ted Strickland, U.S. House of Representatives
FROM: CHRISTINA GROTH, 707 East Luna Drive
DATE: May 23, 1997
REGARDING:MADE IN AMERICA and associated detritus
MADE IN U.S.A.Until recent years that notice always meant best-of-kind. Then unions killed steel, other industries sought options to union excesses and government protectionist and regulatory assaults -- all exterior to sound management and production promoting quality products; costs rose, workplace dissensions and poor quality prevailed, and current events ensued. There is no question in my mind that government regulations and taxation overheads played heavily in the current source quagmire and conspicuous deceits and covert ones . . . all of them fraudulent!
Then there was a time when selective Made in Italy for shoes and leathers, for example, or Made in Germany for particular products, also for example, clearly exemplified quality for price not available in America. Likewise, design of mainstream products often lacked the integrity and performance of particular imported items. Then automobiles went down the tubes, the best quality silks came from China with exquisite construction absent from various U.S. or other imported sources, another example.
Although I shop at Wal-Mart which presents a wide variety of poor to wonderful in their offerings, I by-pass Kathy Lee completely in spite of occasional great color because everything is rayon/acetate or some other spinoff fiber and the everyone else-has-one-like-it situation. I do buy White Stag when fabric is cotton, linen, or silk, and construction is up to par; often their things are made in Turkey. There are some fine things that truly seem to be made in America; I don't believe appliances or equipment are, with exceptions.
I expressly avoid all makes whether or not made in America, when a company or other entity in the distribution line "donates" profits to any nonprofit/tax-exempt entities that advocate and/or take tax funds. I know of none with competitive prices as products are overpriced.
Made in U.S.A. for me reduces to buying from designers. At craft and trade shows open to the public, their prices are highly competitive, quality for cost has no peers, and their prices reflect their costs plus nominal profits. Their products at high end operations like Saks, Neiman Marcus, Magnin, et al., are significantly out of my range. Even expensive-for-me directly from designers, this fine merchandise costs less in the long run, gives reliable and gratifying service, requires minimal upkeep over many years. That includes shoes which are a costly item for me due to long narrow feet which are not a primary focus; when "extended sizes" or some such version are available, they are often flimsy, cut stocking heels, flex instead of hold arches, have gaping heels, and are full of extraneous materials less amenable to human contact than leather.
Labeling is a costly administrative element, often a big joke, your suggestions included: I want accurate, honest INFORMATION, not guidance. I want specific correct terms, not "substantially" or some other diversion -- which may mean zero to one hundred percent!
Either something is Made in U.S.A. or it is not. Procurement is up to manufacturer; nowhere are raw materials better than those produced in these United States. Unfortunately, silk and hemp come primarily from foreign sources because they are seriously discouraged or outlawed which is the case for help!
To the extent labeling caters palliatives instead of facts, it is useless, and irrelevant.
For your information.