New US Tariffs are Anti-Maker and Will Encourage Offshoring

The new 25% tariffs announced by the USTR, set to go into effect on July 6th, are decidedly anti-Maker and ironically pro-offshoring. I’ve examined the tariff lists (List 1 and List 2), and it taxes the import of basic components, tools and sub-assemblies, while giving fully assembled goods a free pass. The USTR’s press release is careful to mention that the tariffs “do not include goods commonly purchased by American consumers such as cellular telephones or televisions.”

Think about it – big companies with the resources to organize thousands of overseas workers making TVs and cell phones will have their outsourced supply chains protected, but small companies that still assemble valuable goods from basic parts inside the US are about to see significant cost increases. Worse yet educators, already forced to work with a shoe-string budget, are going to return from their summer recess to find that basic parts, tools and components for use in the classroom are now significantly more expensive.

Above: The Adafruit MetroX Classic Kit is representative of a typical electronics education kit. Items marked with an “X” in the above image are potentially impacted by the new USTR tariffs.

New Tariffs Reward Offshoring, Encourage IP Flight

Some of the most compelling jobs to bring back to the US are the so-called “last screw” system integration operations. These often involve the complex and precise process of integrating simple sub-assemblies into high-value goods such as 3D printers or cell phones. Quality control and IP protection are paramount. I often advise startups to consider putting their system integration operations in the US because difficult-to-protect intellectual property, such as firmware, never has to be exported if the firmware upload operation happens in the US. The ability to leverage China for low-value subassemblies opens more headroom to create high-value jobs in the US, improving the overall competitiveness of American companies.

Unfortunately, the structure of the new tariffs are exactly the opposite of what you would expect to bring those jobs back to the US. Stiff new taxes on simple components, sub-assemblies, and tools like soldering irons contrasted against a lack of taxation on finished goods pushes business owners to send these “last screw” operation overseas. Basically, with these new tariffs the more value-add sent outside the borders of the US, the more profitable a business will be. Not even concerns over IP security could overcome a 25% increase in base costs and keep operations in the US.

It seems the intention of the new tariff structure was to minimize the immediate pain that voters would feel in the upcoming mid-terms by waiving taxes on finished goods. Unfortunately, the reality is it gives small businesses that were once considering setting up shop in the US a solid reason to look off-shore, while rewarding large corporations for heavy investments in overseas operations.

New Tariffs Hurt Educators and Makers

Learning how to blink a light is the de-facto introduction to electronics. This project is often done with the help of a circuit board, such as a Microbit or Chibi Chip, and a type of light known as an LED. Unfortunately, both of those items – simple circuit boards and LEDs – are about to get 25% more expensive with the new tariffs, along with other Maker and educator staples such as capacitors, resistors, soldering irons, and oscilloscopes. The impact of this cost hike will be felt throughout the industry, but most sharply by educators, especially those serving under-funded school districts.

Above: Learning to blink a light is the de-facto introduction to electronics, and it typically involves a circuit board and an LED, like those pictured above.

Somewhere on the Pacific Ocean right now floats a container of goods for ed-tech startup Chibitronics. The goods are slated primarily for educators and Makers that are stocking up for the fall semester. It will arrive in the US the second week of July, and will likely be greeted by a heavy import tax. I know this because I’m directly involved in the startup’s operations. Chibitronics’ core mission is to serve the educator market, and as part of that we routinely offered deep discounts on bulk products for educators and school systems. Now, thanks to the new tariffs on the basic components that educators rely upon to teach electronics, we are less able to fulfill our mission.

A 25% jump in base costs forces us to choose between immediate price increases or cutting the salaries of our American employees who support the educators. These new tariffs are a tax on America’s future – it deprives some of the most vulnerable groups of access to technology education, making future American workers less competitive on the global stage.

Above: Educator-oriented learning kits like the Chibitronics “Love to Code” are slated for price increases this fall due to the new tariffs.

Protectionism is Bad for Technological Leadership

Recently, I was sent photos by Hernandi Krammes of a network card that was manufactured in Brazil around 1992. One of the most striking features of the card was how retro it looked – straight out of the 80’s, a full decade behind its time. This is a result of Brazil’s policy of protectionist tariffs on the import of high-tech components. While stiff tariffs on the import of microchips drove investment in local chip companies, trade barriers meant the local companies didn’t have to be as competitive. With less incentive to re-invest or upgrade, local technology fell behind the curve, leading ultimately to anachronisms like the Brazilian Ethernet card pictured below.

Above: this Brazilian network card from 1992 features design techniques from the early 80’s. It is large and clunky compared to contemporaneous cards.

Significantly, it’s not that the Brazilian engineers were any less clever than their Western counterparts: they displayed considerable ingenuity getting a network card to work at all using primarily domestically-produced components. The tragedy is instead of using their brainpower to create industry-leading technology, most of their effort went into playing catch-up with the rest of the world. By the time protectionist policies were repealed in Brazil, the local industry was too far behind to effectively compete on a global scale.

Should the US follow Brazil’s protectionist stance on trade, it’s conceivable that some day I might be remarking on the quaintness of American network cards compared to their more advanced Chinese or European counterparts. Trade barriers don’t make a country more competitive – in fact, quite the opposite. In a competition of ideas, you want to start with the best tech available anywhere; otherwise, you’re still jogging to the starting line while the competition has already finished their first lap.

Stand Up and Be Heard

There is a sliver of good news in all of this for American Makers. The list of commodities targeted in the trade war is not yet complete. The “List 2” items – which include all manner of microchips, motors, and plastics (such as 3D printer PLA filament and acrylic sheets for laser cutting) that are building blocks for small businesses and Makers – have yet to be ratified. The USTR website has indicated in the coming weeks they will disclose a process for public review and comment. Once this process is made transparent – whether you are a small business owner or the parent of a child with technical aspirations – I encourage you to please share your stories and concerns on how you will be negatively impacted by these additional tariffs.

Some of the List 2 items still under review include:

9030.31.00 Multimeters for measuring or checking electrical voltage, current, resistance or power, without a recording device
8541.10.00 Diodes, other than photosensitive or light-emitting diodes
8541.40.60 Diodes for semiconductor devices, other than light-emitting diodes, nesoi
8542.31.00 Electronic integrated circuits: processors and controllers
8542.32.00 Electronic integrated circuits: memories
8542.33.00 Electronic integrated circuits: amplifiers
8542.39.00 Electronic integrated circuits: other
8542.90.00 Parts of electronic integrated circuits and microassemblies
8501.10.20 Electric motors of an output of under 18.65 W, synchronous, valued not over $4 each
8501.10.60 Electric motors of an output of 18.65 W or more but not exceeding 37.5 W
8501.31.40 DC motors, nesoi, of an output exceeding 74.6 W but not exceeding 735 W
8544.49.10 Insulated electric conductors of a kind used for telecommunications, for a voltage not exceeding 80 V, not fitted with connectors
8544.49.20 Insulated electric conductors nesoi, for a voltage not exceeding 80 V, not fitted with connectors
3920.59.80 Plates, sheets, film, etc, noncellular, not reinforced, laminated, combined, of other acrylic polymers, nesoi
3916.90.30 Monafilament nesoi, of plastics, excluding ethylene, vinyl chloride and acrylic polymers

Here’s some of the “List 1” items that are set to become 25% more expensive to import from China, come July 6th:

Staples used by every Maker or electronics educator:

8515.11.00 Electric soldering irons and guns
8506.50.00 Lithium primary cells and primary batteries
8506.60.00 Air-zinc primary cells and primary batteries
9030.20.05 Oscilloscopes and oscillographs, specially designed for telecommunications
9030.33.34 Resistance measuring instruments
9030.33.38 Other instruments and apparatus, nesoi, for measuring or checking electrical voltage, current, resistance or power, without a recording device
9030.39.01 Instruments and apparatus, nesoi, for measuring or checking

Circuit assemblies (like Microbit, Chibi Chip, Arduino):

8543.90.68 Printed circuit assemblies of electrical machines and apparatus, having individual functions, nesoi
9030.90.68 Printed circuit assemblies, NESOI

Basic electronic components:

8532.21.00 Tantalum fixed capacitors
8532.22.00 Aluminum electrolytic fixed capacitors
8532.23.00 Ceramic dielectric fixed capacitors, single layer
8532.24.00 Ceramic dielectric fixed capacitors, multilayer
8532.25.00 Dielectric fixed capacitors of paper or plastics
8532.29.00 Fixed electrical capacitors, nesoi
8532.30.00 Variable or adjustable (pre-set) electrical capacitors
8532.90.00 Parts of electrical capacitors, fixed, variable or adjustable (pre-set)
8533.10.00 Electrical fixed carbon resistors, composition or film types
8533.21.00 Electrical fixed resistors, other than composition or film type carbon resistors, for a power handling capacity not exceeding 20 W
8533.29.00 Electrical fixed resistors, other than composition or film type carbon resistors, for a power handling capacity exceeding 20 W
8533.31.00 Electrical wirewound variable resistors, including rheostats and potentiometers, for a power handling capacity not exceeding 20 W
8533.40.40 Metal oxide resistors
8533.40.80 Electrical variable resistors, other than wirewound, including rheostats and potentiometers
8533.90.80 Other parts of electrical resistors, including rheostats and potentiometers, nesoi
8541.21.00 Transistors, other than photosensitive transistors, with a dissipation rating of less than 1 W
8541.29.00 Transistors, other than photosensitive transistors, with a dissipation rating of 1 W or more
8541.30.00 Thyristors, diacs and triacs, other than photosensitive devices
8541.40.20 Light-emitting diodes (LED’s)
8541.40.70 Photosensitive transistors
8541.40.80 Photosensitive semiconductor devices nesoi, optical coupled isolators
8541.40.95 Photosensitive semiconductor devices nesoi, other
8541.50.00 Semiconductor devices other than photosensitive semiconductor devices, nesoi
8541.60.00 Mounted piezoelectric crystals
8541.90.00 Parts of diodes, transistors, similar semiconductor devices, photosensitive semiconductor devices, LED’s and mounted piezoelectric crystals
8504.90.75 Printed circuit assemblies of electrical transformers, static converters and inductors, nesoi
8504.90.96 Parts (other than printed circuit assemblies) of electrical transformers, static converters and inductors
8536.50.90 Switches nesoi, for switching or making connections to or in electrical circuits, for a voltage not exceeding 1,000 V
8536.69.40 Connectors: coaxial, cylindrical multicontact, rack and panel, printed circuit, ribbon or flat cable, for a voltage not exceeding 1,000 V
8544.49.30 Insulated electric conductors nesoi, of copper, for a voltage not exceeding 1,000 V, not fitted with connectors
8544.49.90 Insulated electric conductors nesoi, not of copper, for a voltage not exceeding 1,000 V, not fitted with connectors
8544.60.20 Insulated electric conductors nesoi, for a voltage exceeding 1,000 V, fitted with connectors
8544.60.40 Insulated electric conductors nesoi, of copper, for a voltage exceeding 1,000 V, not fitted with connectors

Parts to fix your phone if it breaks:

8537.10.80 Touch screens without display capabilities for incorporation in apparatus having a display
9033.00.30 Touch screens without display capabilities for incorporation in apparatus having a display
9013.80.70 Liquid crystal and other optical flat panel displays other than for articles of heading 8528, nesoi
9033.00.20 LEDs for backlighting of LCDs
8504.90.65 Printed circuit assemblies of the goods of subheading 8504.40 or 8504.50 for telecommunication apparatus

Power supplies:

9032.89.60 Automatic regulating or controlling instruments and apparatus, nesoi
9032.90.21 Parts and accessories of automatic voltage and voltage-current regulators designed for use in a 6, 12, or 24 V system, nesoi
9032.90.41 Parts and accessories of automatic voltage and voltage-current regulators, not designed for use in a 6, 12, or 24 V system, nesoi
9032.90.61 Parts and accessories for automatic regulating or controlling instruments and apparatus, nesoi
8504.90.41 Parts of power supplies (other than printed circuit assemblies) for automatic data processing machines or units thereof of heading 8471

54 Responses to “New US Tariffs are Anti-Maker and Will Encourage Offshoring”

  1. […] New tariffs will push US manufacturing offshore 11 by Taniwha | 0 comments on Hacker News. […]

  2. […] New tariffs will push US manufacturing offshore 11 by Taniwha | 0 comments on Hacker News. […]

  3. […] New tariffs will push US manufacturing offshore 12 by Taniwha | 0 comments on Hacker News. […]

  4. […] New tariffs will push US manufacturing offshore 12 by Taniwha | 0 comments on Hacker News. […]

  5. […] New tariffs will push US manufacturing offshore 15 by Taniwha | 0 comments on Hacker News. […]

  6. […] New tariffs will push US manufacturing offshore 15 by Taniwha | 0 comments on Hacker News. […]

  7. dackdel says:

    so electronics will be more expensive for American citizens, cant you afford it? first world country after all.

    • Joe says:

      Who is “you”? There are 325,000,000 of us here. That is a big blanket statement, that “you” can afford it.

    • Pepin says:

      The thrust of the article is not a concern that our everyday electronics will become more expensive. In fact, these tariffs appear to cover components more than most assembled electronics. Bunnie is making the point that by taxing electronic components, it will no longer make sense to build electronic assemblies in the US. The tariffs therefore encourage offshoring of electronics assemblies while simultaneously increasing the cost of product development. That combo puts the US at a disadvantage rather than improving our position.

      • Junk McNuggets says:

        Not to mention the children and other age groups ((*ahem*)) learning this shit. Thats a nut punch from about three angles.

  8. […] New tariffs will push US manufacturing offshore 76 by Taniwha | 19 comments on Hacker News. […]

  9. That’s very concerning, thanks for the heads up. I haven’t been following the issues as closely as I should. Do you have any insight into the review process, if concerned parties are heard, etc?

  10. marcus gravey says:

    So… if staple components such as soldering irons and lithium batteries will be more expensive to import due to retaliation tariffs on China, they’ll be less expensive to make here, hence the need to import them for cost savings will not exist. That’s how a market economy works.

    • Garrett Mace says:

      Marcus, that’s not how this tariff works. It taxes the parts to build things here, but not finished goods. It means that manufacturers will move final assembly factories offshore and avoid the tax entirely. It means the loss of jobs in the USA.

      • The problem is that the raw materials to make the finished products (caps, resistors, semiconductors, etc) are not made in the USA. These are all made overseas. So, a small company in the USA that manufactures it’s products here (Hence employs US workers) will be forced to pay an additional tax. This will destabilize our economy and force small companies to fail because they must raise their prices and reduce their work force.

        I build and design products in the US and I have recently found that parts that were easy to purchase are either unavailable or are now being bought by bigger companies that have more buying power. I can afford to purchase thousands of parts in hopes that I can continue building my products. Now the tariffs will make it even harder to stay in business. The only way I can overcome this is to push all my manufacturing to china to avoid the additional 25%. I don’t think that this is the way to make America Great Again.

    • denmike says:

      Incorrect. Manufacturing of simple components has moved away from USA because it could be done cheaper elsewhere (manpower is too expensive). Now it’s going to be more expensive to import from elsewhere. And *maybe* it’s now competitive to again manufacture in the USA. However you’ll still look at a price increase, because an American plant can only exist if the price is higher. However the likelihood that someone wants to start manufacturing in USA are very slim, since as soon as the tarifs are lifted it will no longer be profitable to manufacture, and all you have is a plant that’s too expensive to use.

      Bunnie is raising a very valid point that these tarifs are even more destructive for the USA, as production that is *currently* profitable in the USA will no longer be, and as such this trade war will harm USA.

      BTW: No trade war has ever done anyone any good. It’s a loose-loose scenario for everyone. However it seems the only way this will ever end is if it backfires, and the US economy is hit hard, as was the case with the Smoot–Hawley Tariff Act under the great depression. I hope it happens sooner than later, so we can get rid of this poor policy.

  11. Dave says:

    Will Bunnie and friends (ADA) be part of the public comment? I think the word should be spread to have everyone in a position to comment to make their voice heard. The Public Comment periods are only about 14 days, and I don’t see any link listed. Sometimes you have to be in person, and become part of the public record. Bunnie’s right about screwing over the Maker community, just when it’s most important to get the people educated, as China is eclipsing the US in this area, and many other’s too. So ironic that the technology was born, for the most part in the US, Politicians let the whole industrial base move Over There without a care and now trying to trip up the CN 2025 goal.All this started after Nixon played some ping pong, and his hidden plans for that market back fired and are now un-reversible. With that said, a lot of the little things we all play with are surplus, for the most part, so there should be an exemption for certain sections of the personal, education and small biz segments. I think this whole thing is two fold, W. Ross will make a lot of money in his personal investments and the Prez does not see this on a granular scale, he’s only looking at what CN is doing on global scale. Should have never let the Industrial base leave to begin with, you are not going to get it back. We lost that game, this current game is either a strategy or another ill informed, manipulated advisement to the Prez. Looks like Bunnie needs to set up some shell companies and send everything to Mexico and they will just hand carry the goods via the Rio Grande routes and with the existing distribution routes could be delivered faster than Amazon Prime. Now back to reality, All that is needed is Boycott on such a scale that The ruling elite class get’s the message that once they start losing money they will cry and whine all the way to the top to get their way. Interesting topic, Bunnie, will be looking for news as how this one impacts society. Think doodling with a pencil and paper was a simpler way of life, but the materials are made in CN too!.

  12. Gene Machine says:

    Tariffs will prevent poor minority kids from getting trained in electronics.
    Many are learning to manage electric microgrids in US Southwest.
    Trump and Republicans want to keep minorities from jobs.
    I have worked with Guatemalans, Navajos, and Mexicans building power grids for US States and reservations.

    Raspberry Pi and Arduino and imported electronic components help US and immigrant kids to build projects and learn digital electronics. We use them daily with Native and Hispanic kids to help them learn electic micogrid skills.

    • Naviathan says:

      “Trump and Republicans want to keep minorities from jobs.”

      You can twist anything into a racial bias…If you look for something hard enough, you will always find it, whether it exists or not.

      I’m not a republican, but statements like this make me cringe, because you’re painting an entire group of diverse people with the same brush. This is the exact thing you’re presumably fighting against. That’s called hypocrisy. The call to racism is a ploy of the democrats and liberals to keep the public focus off the actual goals of politics. Republicans use economic issues, generally, to distract the public. It’s all a game that the upper class plays against the lower class and you’re just falling right into their ploy. Take off the blinders and you’ll see that both parties are driving the same bus off a cliff. They’re just using different games to keep the occupants from seeing the end of the line.

  13. […] in greater detail and also includes info. on what you can do to influence these new tariffs. […]

  14. Dave says:

    Raspberry Pi and Arduino come from the EU. What kills you there is shipping (If you cannot get (go) local). Guess this is where salvaging, recycling comes in. Some parts of this round of so called tariffs seems targeted to make a certain group of interests more $ and cost the rest of us more $. Something really strange about “The Lists”, multi faceted cause and effect(s).

    • denmike says:

      The same tarifs are going to be applied to goods from Europe and elsewhere. They already did this with aluminium and steel, because otherwise someone could import Chineese aluminium and steel through Europe.

      It’s just a matter of time.

  15. Yuhong Bao says:

    This reminds me of how Hynix was able to evade anti-dumping duties by both EU and US in the mid-2000s by using the Eugene, Oregon and later Wuxi, China fabs.

  16. W says:

    We’re seeing similar silliness in Australia with the introduction of GST (aka VAT) to items under $1000 being imported. The policy is demanded by our local overpriced retailers that don’t want to compete with Amazon, but it trashes non-commercial/hobby manufacturing.

  17. […] has penned his thoughts on the new 25% tariffs coming to many goods shipped from China to the US. Living and working both in the US and China, […]

  18. […] has penned his thoughts on the new 25% tariffs coming to many goods shipped from China to the US. Living and working both in the US and China, […]

  19. […] has penned his thoughts on the new 25% tariffs coming to many items shipped from China to the US. Living and dealing each within the US and China, […]

  20. […] escrito sus pensamientos sobre el nuevo 25% de los aranceles llegando a muchos de los bienes enviados desde China a los estados unidos. De vida y de trabajo, […]

  21. […] has penned his thoughts on the new 25% tariffs coming to many goods shipped from China to the US. Living and working both in the US and China, […]

  22. From this I think it’s clear … it’s the US government that wants to put in the “last screw”. Once that last screw is inserted, we’ll be saying: “Well done, Trumty Dumpty… made America [a] great [importer] again!”

    I’m in Australia, and I take no joy in ordering stuff from overseas. It is unfortunately, unavoidable.

    Suppose I need a new computer, care to show me one that’s completely made in Australia? Best I can do is the software compiled in Australia… my Gentoo stages are about 10 or 12th generation self-builds, even if I get the PCBs made here and solder them myself, the semiconductors will come from overseas… unless I want to buy a LOT of wire and some iron, and start winding lots and lots of relay coils! (Good luck implementing the x86-64 architecture that way!)

    So yeah, I will buy stuff from overseas… it’s impossible not to. I’m happy to consider a local retailer, but if they (1) don’t offer the item for sale, or (2) charge a ridiculously high fee, then I have little choice. Thankfully I’m building in very small volumes, so the extra 10% we’re about to be hit with won’t be a huge burden, but then think about small manufacturers and universities where the volumes are larger, but still not GST-exempt.

    I feel for those in the US that are about to be slogged with even higher fees than what has been proposed here.

    It’s already hard to get a job where you’re working with electronics, and this will raise the operating costs for many businesses above levels they can afford. Universities might as well shut down their faculties of Electrical Engineering and Information Technology now, since if this keeps going, there’ll be no demand for them since all the jobs will be in Asia, and they’ve got plenty of well-heeled universities over there.

    There’s already a growing sector of the community that “fear” people who experiment with electronics. A kid builds a digital clock to show his physics teacher, and another teacher freaks out and calls the bomb squad. Someone starts working on some code or some mathematical formulas, and suddenly they’re answerable to federal police over “hacking” allegations. We’ll soon be a global community of 21st century hermits where sorcery with electrickery and science is deemed an evil art! Welcome, to the new middle ages, just like the old ones.

    I think there’s a lesson for our politicians: Technology is mankind’s genie, you cannot simply stuff it back in the bottle! Unlike the genies of fiction though, this one will grant us unlimited wishes, but demands that we get to understand it first. We will not achieve this reading it from books, we have to learn by doing.

    It is too late to rectify this once the last domain expert in a given field passes on. Re-building an industry from scratch or doing without is going to be much more costly than keeping what we have going.

  23. […] has penned his thoughts on the new 25% tariffs coming to many goods shipped from China to the US. Living and working both in the US and China, […]

  24. Derrick Smith says:

    You seemed to be ignoring the fact that not only were those items not being taxed but the US Postal service is footing the bill for all their shipping. So if they raise prices they are only hurting themselves.

  25. olin says:

    What’s not clear to me whether it involves products ‘imported from China’ or ‘made in China’. I think there is a subtle difference, but anyway Chinese will find a way how to deliver to the USA for low prices either by shifting the goods (declaring thge origin) through India, Malaysia etc. or eventually building factories in these countries if that will make economical sense in the longer term.

  26. aki009 says:

    What seems to be missed by many/most here is that China already has a tariff on all imports into China. If the goal is to level the playing field, clearly us keeping tariffs at 0 for decades didn’t make China change its ways.

    Perhaps this 25% will make a difference, as can be seen in all manner of reductions to Chinese import tariffs.

    • bunnie says:

      Yes but those tariffs actually pushed me to move assembly out of China. For example, on Novena, the electronics assembly was done in Fremont, CA exactly because of the Chinese tariffs. The Chinese tariffs always figure in to my computation of where I should domicile production. Furthermore, China has an import license system you can use to reduce the tariff to zero (so most large assembly efforts in China are done tariff-free); it’s a bit of a headache to get the license but for stable products it’s worth the effort. The US tariff structure has no such provision for an import license, so even as your production gets very significant you still pay the fixed tariff.

      • aki009 says:

        Agreed. Though if you are producing for export (unlikely), you could use a manufacturer in a Foreign Trade Zone who gets a pass on things intended for export.

  27. […] Bunnie, who is much more diligent in his research (and considerably smarter) than I am, has broken down not only how the proposed 25% tariff on electronics will hurt makers, but how it will ultimately encourage offshoring. Being intimately involved in Chibitronics and several other smaller business that make products that would be effected has Bunnie, understandably, very upset. I highly recommend you go read his blog post on it. […]

  28. […] US Tariffs are Anti-Maker and Will Encourage Offshoring says a man who knows. #trump is helping his own business mostly, not just the "Trump" […]

  29. […] who build things. Now, inveterate maker pro Andrew “Bunnie” Huang (@bunniestudios) weighed in on his blog — and he believes that the tariffs scheduled to go into effect next month are going […]

  30. […] who build things. Now, inveterate maker pro Andrew “Bunnie” Huang (@bunniestudios) weighed in on his blog — and he believes that the tariffs scheduled to go into effect next month are going […]

  31. […] I strongly encourage you to read his entire analysis. […]

  32. […] New US Tariffs are Anti-Maker and Will Encourage Offshoring [Bunnie Huang/Bunnie:Studios] […]

  33. ScottS says:

    I own a domestic contract manufacturing company in Oregon that has had two customers inform us they were taking their production offshore. Their reason is the majority of components we buy to build them with are only built in Asia. Hence subject to the 25% tariff. If a Chinese manufacturer buys these same parts there is no tariff. And they can deliver the full assembly to the States tariff free. This is a perfect example of unintended consequences. Getting emotional will not solve this issue. Communication with the Administration and Trade Commission by bloggers, associations and business owners will go a long way. Throwing temper tantrums and protesting will not work. Don’t let yourself get emotionally high jacked.

  34. […] can read more about this on Andrew “bunnie” Huang’s blog, Bunnie’s Blog. From his […]

  35. […] Bunnieは、私にくらべてずっとよく勉強している(それに頭もずっといい)が、電子製品への25パーセントの関税がMakerをいかに傷つけるか、さらにこれがなぜ結果的に製造を海外に移すことになるかを、わかりやすく解説してくれている。Chibitronicsを始めとする、いくつものスモールビジネスで熱心に製品を作っているBunnieはそのあおりを受けることになるため、大変に腹を立てていることは十分に理解できる。ぜひとも彼のブログ記事を読んで欲しい。 […]

  36. […] See Bunnie’s in depth analysis on the tariff  New Us Tariffs are Anit-Maker and Will Encourage Offshoring. […]

  37. Nico says:

    Heard you on NPR today Bunnie, and just wanted to say thanks for continuing to push back against and educate about this absurd policy. I’ve followed you since the old Xbox days and the work you’ve done and continue to do on open technology and education is genuinely inspiring.


  38. Josh says:

    Yah, I am a maker working out of my garage part time (rest of the time I sling code).. A CNC machine I ordered 6 months ago is going to cost me about 4k more than I was expecting it to when I placed the order.. Its on a boat now.. To late to change plans now.. Just one of many, many makers who instantly felt the pain of this.. Heck check out Grizzly’s list of machines.. Grizzly sells a lot of machines to schools and a large swath of their machines just got 25% more expensive.. I know of at least 1 high school that will spend a few more years with no real machinists lathe (old one is all but dead) because of this change.. They had it in their budget, but not with a 25% increase in price.

  39. M J Guimaraes says:

    Interesting article.
    I reinforce your point from being someone who lived in Brazil during the time period you mentioned, and we were struggling and being suffocated by that irrational policy. The government closed trade in order to protect internal industry, however the cited industry was barely existent, and the ones in place, worked on old dated technology.
    We, as end-users and consumers, were forced to make use of smugglers who “imported” up-to-date hardware, contributing to a black market that skyrocket at time.
    This situation spanned Brazilian technology at least 4-5 years, and on mid-90’s, when this protectionist policies were put down, technologists could catch up, but it has definitely put Brazil out of world scenario.

  40. […] Past guest Bunnie Huang also wrote about how this will impact hardware designers […]

  41. ryoco says:

    “Self-interest” is the defining term of this administration. Policies are enacted (and removed) left and right with a vision so narrow and small you have to wonder if the members are capable of even seeing their own hands in front of them. The only thing that seems to matter is what can benefit “me” immediately. Zero regard is given to others (or at least others who aren’t your buddies). You say this maker movement is inspiring a new generation – I don’t give a damn, not a single damn if it doesn’t fatten my pockets or feed my pathetic ego. You say immigrants (legal or otherwise) are people – I don’t give a damn, not a single damn if it doesn’t fatten my pockets or feed my pathetic ego. “Me me me, screw everyone else.”

  42. Miguel Dahlstrom says:

    as a brazillian i must say, anything you do that follows in our footsteps IS BAD!!!!! thank you for your attention