We hear it again and again: Americans aren't learning the skills they need to compete in the 21st century. How to prove this theory? Well, follow the money, or in this case, the yen. Toyota, after months of speculation over the destination of its new plant, this week opted for Ontario, reportedly turning down hundreds of millions of dollars in subsidies from several American states. One reason: retraining U.S. workers is just too burdensome and costly. (Nissan and Honda factories have reportedly encountered workers in Mississippi and Alabama who need pictorials to operate complicated machinery.) This is depressing stuff indeed. That hundreds of millions of dollars in subsidies still can't entice a company to locate in the biggest, most lucrative market in the world should serve as a wake-up-call to the citizens of the rejected states.

"Toyota to build 100,000 vehicles per year in Woodstock, Ont., starting 2008," by Steve Erwin, CBC News, July 12, 2005

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