The Seal Of Approval
Years Ago there were “seals,” that we all paid attention to, that rated products and services. An example was the UL rating of products, which is still of importance to consumers everywhere. There is also Consumer Reports, an independent agency that receives no financial support from corporations or
A modern concept, like this but for today’s issues, is adding “your approval” to people and organizations as I will introduce here. I am suggesting that to make America what we want of it we have to place Our Values on products, services, government and companies. We need a lab to Rate America! Twibbon.com is a start up example of technology that shows how this might be done for manufacturers of products and to rate products. Ralph Nader made this concept of consumer ratings famous for its honesty in product review and it became the ultimate guide to buying a reliable car.
Picture this: Watson Pharmaceuticals recently fired all its employees in my town and moved, I believe, to India. They can make drugs cheaper there, now that Americans have helped them build their success story. If you worked for Watson, I doubt that with your new job, pumping gas at Fred’s Shell, you will want to purchase their drugs when you are sick. Unfortunately, you may end up selling their drugs from the Mini Mart in the gas station! Now think about what has happened here: A company gets its start in America because we are a secure nation with democratic values. The company prospers on American labor and then wrecks the lives of all those who helped build it by dumping them when times get tough. Now they move to India but keep the “company here” so our soldiers can fight for their security and die for them if they need to be defended (After all they are an American company… well they claim to be). Somehow I would NOT give them a Positive American Approval rating. How about you?
What if? What if your voice can be heard? What if their web page and products get a rating telling Americans what they are really like? If Americans know they are a “low life” greedy company that values money more than American lives, would you buy from them? I hope not! So you look on their website and see that their American Value rating is near Zero! You look on shelves in the grocery store and see that their American Value rating is again near Zero. Now you don’t buy their products, you don’t buy their stock on the NY Stock Exchange. In fact the CEO cannot find builders who want to build his new multi-million dollar home for him in Long Island. Could we do this? Would it benefit us? You bet! Now some of you say the CEO had to deal with the competition from India and China; its not his fault. I find that hard to believe. In a creative country that is known world wide for being able to solve problems. Do you really believe that the only solution is to wait until the Indians and Chinese are as wealthy as WERE are and can set up sweat shops here to make products that put their factories out of business!
For creative businessmen who care, there is always a solution. Note how we are able to sell ORGANIC produce here, even though it is more expensive, because there are RATINGS such as Organic (meaning safe) and Conventional (meaning may cause cancer). Get the picture! Not to mention that years ago, Firestone Park and Goodyear Heights,
built communities for workers at plants to make sure they had a reliable stream of dedicated employees. I have long thought that taking empty malls and factories in Detroit and converting them into condo-micros (minimalistic housing) for employees of new auto-plants could get us back into very competitive auto manufacturing. Imagine housing like college dorms consisting of bedrooms, bath room and a living room – kitchenette. Everything else is like at a resort club. Amenities are central and shared by all, foodservice, a pool, gym, movie theater etc. The deal? Every homeowner must be a shareholder in the company and there are no unions to screw it up.
Technology Rating America: If you use some of the new antivirus programs, when you go to a website they warn you of the site’s bad ratings. This can easily be adapted to business and product ratings. Especially if consumers demand transparency by complying with this new standard. If a company has No Rating, don’t buy from them because they have something to hide! If we make this a standard, then products will soon carry color coded labels on the product telling us how we Americans rated it, or they may not sell. A Twibbon like label could appear in the upper left corner of every company’s website and be updated by your votes and the Rate America Lab’s compilation of the votes.
When companies, politicians, and products trample on your country and your values, ram it back down their throats with RAM (Rate America) — can it be done?
Sure it can!