Thursday, 14 May 2015

Greeks Bearing Manufactured Service Gifts

Finally got round to reupholstering the two dining carvers last night in a contrasting material (I say carvers, but they're really just end chairs) - the carvers are done in the material on the right - a lighter and less pronounced tartan.

Halloumi cheese is apparently undergoing a boom in sales in the UK. The reason totally eludes me - I think the stuff is redolent of that Silly Putty stuff and has no relationship to real cheese whatsoever. Cheese that squeaks when you chew it? Nonsensical. Got some for Hay from Lidl, and some halva - oily sawdust with a hint of pistachio - filthy foreign muck! Think I'll go UKIP...

Next economics issue  engendered by No.1 Son's Economics AS Level - the decline of manufacturing.

It's said that the UK's decline in manufacturing has been offset by the exponential growth in service industries. I believe that to be true, but there's one fatal flaw with a migration to a service based economy - service based industry is generally difficult to export and is primarily targeted at a domestic market (there are exceptions, like finance). That won't do the balance of payments much good. Not only that, but whereas economies of scale are relatively simple within manufacturing, it's almost impossible in service industry without a drop in the quality of the product (imagine a teacher improving productivity by doubling the class size). 

As a consequence, importation of manufactured goods will increase as consumption rises, but service based exports will reach a natural peak, meaning an unsustainable deficit.

Any solutions?

I work in a service based job (MD) within the UK for a foreign (Israeli) manufacturer, so I'm improving the balance of payments with my services, but can do little to grow my contribution to the balance of payments without doing two simultaneous jobs, which a) isn't allowed by my employer, and b) would result in my effectiveness (hence quality of service) in each job becoming substandard.

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