Friday, July 27, 2012

Is Keeping Austin Local Under Siege?

We are blessed to have so many natural resources at our disposal in Texas. Austin has a great campaign for its citizen to be conscious about where their purchases come from. Having a local economy protects us from the waves of uncertainty from Wall Street. Many people are unaware that our local economy and resources are under attack by multi-national corporations.

 In Austin alone, local quarries and building supply companies are being bought out by multi-national corporations such as Old Castle. Customers who want to live by the “keep Austin local” meme give their business to seemingly local companies without realizing the facade is merely an illusion. When the corporation buys out a local company it is rarely publicized in the local paper. They do their best to keep everything as it was by giving employees raises to maintain similar faces and keeping the company name the same. Natural resources that are used in building materials such as gypsum, sand, gravel and rock are the backbone to our economy. When a new building is created there are new jobs added, and more money is flowing into the local economy. In order to keep the profits in our local and state economies we must not let our resources be bought out..

What are the implications of these buyouts? When a small company is bought out by a larger one, the morale of the employees is diminished. Going from being a valuable asset to a company to just a number is a tough pill to swallow. Multi-national corporations are not concerned with the local community where they are gaining profits from. They are more likely to pay lower wages, and layoff families to increase their bottom line. The only ones benefiting from this siege are the families who are given a blank check to sell off their companies that have been fueling Texas communities for decades. Keeping local companies in the hands of Texans is imperative to fight back against Wall Street’s attack on the middle class.  These companies should not be allowed to hide behind their local signs, and Austinites deserve to know where their money is going.

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