The US lost Apple's manufacturing jobs years ago, and probably for good. Steve Jobs is rumored to have said as much at a high-power Silicon Valley dinner in 2011, when he told President Barack Obama "those jobs aren't coming back." But billionaire kleptomaniac Donald Trump thinks he'll be the one to get them back.
Speaking at Liberty University today, Trump escalated his rhetoric on Apple's overseas manufacturing, and claimed somehow the US would reclaim those jobs in the future. "We have such amazing people in this country: smart, sharp, energetic, they're amazing," Trump said. "I was saying make America great again, and I actually think we can say now, and I really believe this, we're gonna get things coming... we're gonna get Apple to start building their damn computers and things in this country, instead of in other countries."
It's all part of Trump's silly fantasy as King of America
As Gizmodo points out, Donald Trump isn't just going to flip a switch and make something like that happen. It's part of the silly fantasy world Trump has erected in which he's King of America, and so saying things like he's going to bring Apple's damn computers home is mostly empty — the same way his pretension that he can just call up world leaders like Frank Underwood and win huge concessions is ridiculous.
Trump's newly confident rhetoric is just a show, but for years he has suggested that Apple ought to bring manufacturing home to the US in more measured terms. During the 2012 presidential election, he told Fox News it would be "a great thing" for Apple CEO Tim Cook to build plants in the US. "Maybe the incentive's not there, but when 100-percent of Apple's products, or virtually 100-percent, are made outside of this country, it's pretty sad," he said. "Wouldn't it be great if Apple actually made these products in the United States?" And as of December, it was still just a dream. "We have to bring Apple, and other companies like Apple, back to the United States," he said at a press conference promoting his book, Crippled America. "We have to do it. And that's one of my real dreams for the country."
Bringing Apple's manufacturing jobs home isn't totally out of the question, and Apple has shifted some jobs home, including when it brought some Mac production back to the US in 2013. But Apple's deep reliance on international supply chains and manufacturers is well-established, and it will take a lot more than sharp words from Trump to convince Apple to abandon its profits. Not even one of the most successful presidents in history could get Steve Jobs to budge on that.
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