Editor’s Note: Happy Again

Today’s Machining World Archives November/December 2010 Volume 06 Issue 09

Changing mindsets is essential to making us human. We normally develop expectations and then try to fit events and experiences into the mental molds we have machined into our brains.

For people in our line of work, the past several years, probably the whole decade, has been a zigzag of financial turmoil. The trend has been negative with huge structured change forced by the rise of China as a manufacturing goliath, to the detriment of domestic manufacturing. We may sugarcoat the reality in the trade press to make ourselves and our readers and advertisers feel rosier, but the enduring pain of angina in the heart of American manufacturing is undeniable.

Despite this, I have a sense that the decade of our discontent is ending now. Perhaps the IPO of General Motors this November was the signal of the resurgence of North American manufacturing. The mockers will pooh-pooh the Chevy Volt and the innovators of the X-Prize competition who are making a 100-mile per gallon production car, but these things are a big deal. MPG increases are going to be the big impetus for people to re-enter the new car buying market.

In this issue of Today’s Machining World we have a piece about the American Precision Museum in Winsdor, Vermont. In its day the Precision Valley in Vermont was the Silicon Valley of its time. I see a comparable revolution in medical technology and robotics in the coming decade as American ingenuity and manufacturing push the envelope. The United States, for better or worse, is the leader in military manufacturing. As the world moves into an era of robotic warfare and drone reconnaissance America will dominate the field.

It is time to shed the negative mindset stemming from the decade of shrinkage. I’ve decided to get happy again.

Lloyd Graff

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