Folks are finally coming to understand that a lot of the value of things we buy represents the fruit of intellectual effort, not physical transformation. This is important, because it changes the way we think about things like the balance of trade in goods and the loss of jobs in manufacturing. Apple was one of the first companies to suggest that where its products are engineered, designed, and marketed matters much more than where they are put together, which is why the words “Designed by Apple in California. Assembled in China.” are stamped into the aluminum case of computer on which this post is being written. On a holiday trip to Canada I noticed that Lazl, the company that made my ski poles, is pushing the same idea. The company wants you to know that its poles are “Designed in Canada.” The words “Made in China” are almost an afterthought.