I'm old enough to remember the fear of Japanese imports in the 1980s and the protectionist clamor it inspired. I suspect that much of the fear was stoked by Democrats looking for something -- anything -- for which to criticize the Republican ascendancy. But in any case, that fear dissipated in the early 1990s, partly because Japan moved some of its manufacturing to the U.S., and partly because the Japanese model didn't work out so great for the Japanese.
Fear of Chinese imports, notwithstanding their devastating impact on American textiles and small manufactures, has never reached that fever-pitch. This reflects a lack of political sponsorship: our political class is now united in its devotion to free trade. This itself reflects the fact that unemployed manufacturing workers were never as politically salient a constituency as, notably, the Big Three.
If the linked article can be believed, then some of that manufacturing may be headed home, not because of any improvement in the legal and business climate here in the U.S., nor because of advances in American productivity, but rather as an artifact of exchange rates and internal Chinese politics. In the medium run, this will be good for U.S. workers; in the short run, it will mean higher prices for darn near everything. This was eventually going to happen one way or another: we Americans have been living beyond our means for some time now, as reflected in our balooning trade and budget deficits.
On the other hand, perhaps the Anglo-American free-trade orthodoxy has once again been vindicated against mercantilist usurpation.