There are still obstacles to overcome: Growth in manufacturing is largely attributable to new discoveries of and better methods of extracting natural gas and oil. These are not the Solyndra style subsidized and government planned “green jobs” our social and cultural betters somehow assumed would drive the return of American manufacturing, but they are jobs nonetheless.
Another problem is that it is becoming increasingly difficult for American manufacturers to recruit skilled labor. Manufacturing has grown increasingly technical but the supply of people with the ability and energy to operate heavy machinery hasn’t increased. We’ve got to get better at helping young people who don’t much care for academics to get the training they need to cash in on the brown jobs boom. For a lot of the millennial generation, these brown jobs are their best path to a middle class life; we need a pro-brown jobs government that sees these jobs as a blessing not an eyesore.
I think maybe the Republican candidate who first realizes, and then embraces, the new era of American manufacturing will win and in the end we will prosper. The best way out from under the crushing debt that the current administration has buried us under is to grow the economy to support and ultimately satisfy those obligations.