Quarter-Mile-Long Container Ship Docks at Los Angeles Port

Here’s a postcard from the expanding globalized economy: outsourced manufacturing requires mega-shipping to transport the cheaply-produced goods back to American consumers.

The latest money-saver for corporations is the biggest container ship ever to land in North America, the CMA CGM Benjamin Franklin, a French-owned ship, which docked on Saturday at the Port of Los Angeles. Built in Red China, the Franklin can carry up to 18,000 containers, which holds a lot of TVs from Asia.

ContainerShipBenjaminFranklin

Below, an aerial photo of the CMA CGM Benjamin Franklin. Those boxes that may appear tiny are large: they go straight from ships to the back of semi-trucks. (In later incarnations, some are cleverly turned into housing, as Popular Mechanics has detailed.)

The largest container ship to visit a North American port, the CMA CGM Benjamin Franklin, arrived at the Port of Los Angeles on Saturday  morning, December 26th.  The ship will leave for Oakland on Wednesday.

The largest container ship to visit a North American port, the CMA CGM Benjamin Franklin, arrived at the Port of Los Angeles on Saturday morning, December 26th. The ship will leave for Oakland on Wednesday.

Here’s Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti crowing about what a big ship it is and how he saw “one crane operator who’s unloading about 40 boxes in an hour” — a speed made possible because of increased automation in ports these days, a job-killer fact the mayor didn’t mention:

Globalization has caused Americans to lose “six million manufacturing jobs and 55,000 factories” in the first decade of the 21st century as a result of government policies, according to Pat Buchanan.

So it’s pretty dense of politicians like Garcetti to praise an element of America’s economic downfall where millions of manufacturing jobs have been lost while just a couple hundred transportation positions result.

Here are some stats: The ship’s crew numbers 26 and around 150 longshoremen are unloading the ship. The job loss shouldn’t be celebrated, but then lying is what politicians do.

Megaship Arrives at Port of Los Angeles, KABC, December 27, 2015

The largest container ship to ever dock in North America arrived at the Port of Los Angeles Saturday morning.

The CMA CGM Benjamin Franklin is 1,306 feet, which is longer than the Empire State Building, and rises out of water nearly the size of a football field. Its width matches than of an Olympic-sized swimming pool, port officials said.

The French vessel can transport 18,000 containers, which is a third more cargo than most ships at the port. It’s even too big to pass through the Panama Canal.

L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti spoke at the arrival.

“This ship is called the Benjamin Franklin because it embodies the relationship that has existed between our nation and France…,” said Garcetti. “Here we have this great French ambassador visiting America and repaying the favor.”

The ship was expected to be unloaded at the port over the next four days.

It was scheduled to return to Southern California, docking at the Port of Long Beach sometime in early 2016.

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