A national industrial/economic policy is a plan by a government to promote the growth of key strategic industries or sectors in a country. Examples: China has been developing their manufacturing sector and is now the largest exporter. India spent decades building up the components of an information technology industry and has reaped the rewards.
Most countries have industrial plans. The United States does not. Other countries look at the overall, longer-term picture, seeing themselves as a country of people with common economic interests. We do not. Other countries understand that attracting industries to their country is good for their people in the long term. We do not. They line all the ducks up, from education policies to local infrastructure, to supply chains, to regulatory environments to trade strategies, and use those as a package to lure entire industries. We do not, and that’s why we are losing out.
We do not have an national economic/industrial policy because our politics are dominated by a conservative ideology that believes in letting “the markets” decide instead of We, the People making decisions through our government. Talk of developing a national industrial/economic policy is derided with such slogans as "government interference" or "picking winners and losers."
Clearly American workers are losing out from not having policies to promote development of specific industries, such as wind and solar energy. It is time to pick a winner: develop an economic/industrial policy that restores the competitiveness of our manufacturing sector. American workers will be the winners if we do this.
Having an industrial policy is just smart. A national industrial policy helps a country's businesses to be more competitive in the world economy. America doesn't have an industrial policy, which is not so smart, and means we aren't so competitive.
Robert Reich, writes about industrial policy in The Real Economic Lesson China Could Teach Us 
Here’s the real story. China has a national economic strategy designed to make it, and its people, the economic powerhouse of the future. They’re intent on learning as much as they can from us and then going beyond us (as they already are in solar and electric-battery technologies). They’re pouring money into basic research and education at all levels. In the last 12 years they’ve built twenty universities, each designed to be the equivalent of MIT.
The United States doesn’t have a national economic strategy. Instead, we have global corporations that happen to be headquartered here. Their goal is to maximize profits, wherever they can make the most money. They’ll make things in America for export to China when that’s most profitable; they’ll make it in China and give the Chinese their know-how when that’s the best way to boost the bottom line. They’ll utilize research and development wherever around the world it will deliver the biggest bang for the dollar.
Not having a clear forward-looking economic/industrial policy is hurting us. But this isn't really accurate, because even if you don't have a policy you have one, because it IS a policy not to have one. A vacuum is a policy.
Face it, if we do not have an active and engaged industrial policy we are handing the business over to those who do. And they do. And we are.
It is not too late to decide to have an all-out American effort to be the world leader in wind and solar manufacturing. It is not to late to decide we are going to restore our hi-tech manufacturing industry and launch an all-out effort to win this back. It is not too late to launch an initiative to become the leader in green-method manufacturing. We must decide to develop a national economic/industrial policy to restore our competitive position relative to the rest of the world.