Politics Foreign Affairs Culture Fellows Program

The Myth of Post-Industrialism

Harvard sociologist Daniel Bell told America that manufacturing didn’t matter. He was wrong.

Daily Camera Archives
The abandoned Longmont sugar factory. (Photo by Lewis Geyer/Digital First Media/Boulder Daily Camera via Getty Images)

In the wake of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, the U.S. Navy doubled its fleet within a year and quadrupled it before the end of the war. It was a similar story in the merchant marine. By 1943, U.S. shipyards were turning out three merchant ships a day. They ended up building a total of nearly 3,300 ships before the end of the war. Given that shipbuilding was then one of the world’s most advanced industries, there could hardly have been a more impressive demonstration of America’s global economic leadership. 

Fast forward to today, and we discover that America’s hollowed-out manufacturing sector is having a hard time arming Ukraine and can do so only with the help of copious imports of advanced electronic components from various trade partners, not least China. 


Become a Member today for a growing stake in the conservative movement.
Join here!
Join here