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Outsourcing jobs - good, bad or indifferent - who to believe and why

By maxwell edison ·
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"From a historical perspective.....the movement of jobs overseas is a hardly a new trend. Manufacturing jobs have been fleeing this country for decades. The shift of employment out of manufacturing in the United States, however, has led neither to rampant unemployment nor a declining standard of living."

http://www.catholicexchange.com/vm/index.asp?vm_id=1&art_id=22832

http://www.heritage.org/Research/TradeandForeignAid/wm467.cfm

http://www.foreignaffairs.org/20040501faessay83301/daniel-w-drezner/the-outsourcing-bogeyman.html?mode=print

http://www.factcheck.org/article.aspx?docID=234

http://www.ncpa.org/pub/ba/ba480/ba480.pdf

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That's because it occurred slowly

by DC_GUY In reply to Outsourcing jobs - good, ...

Other industries sprang up to absorb the displaced workforce. Also, it was still the Industrial Era so the new industries could often make use of the specific workers' skills, such as operating machine tools or keeping in synch with an assembly line.

What is happening now, as part of the Paradigm Shift, is quite different. The complete, shrinking remainder of the Industrial Era economy is moving to cheaper labor markets. The total number of jobs available to people without a professional education, or at least job-specific training, is shrinking.

On top of that, the first Post-Industrial Era sector, the one that America invented -- IT -- is emigrating. Americans are by nature risk takers, inventors, individualists. When an "industry" reaches a point where what it needs is process improvement, QA, and cost reduction, instead of glamor and innovation, America and Americans can't compete. Software has reached that stage. We'd all be much happier with software that simply does what it's supposed to do with the user-friendliness of a toaster and the operating lifespan of a toilet, instead of an incessant avalanche of bewildering new features bundled with six-year old catastrophic defects. You clearly are not going to get software like that from a nation of cowboys.

So the problem is that there's no new sector popping up to employ the punch press operators and the cowboys.

Welcome to the Paradigm Shift. That's why they call it that. Whether it's good, bad, or indifferent is probably not the right question. It simply IS.

It could simply be America's turn to follow Egypt, Persia, Greece, Rome, Spain, Holland, Turkey, and Russia into the Former World Powers Gentlemen's Club. Only history will tell. In the meantime, brush up on your Estonian.

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There is always opportunity in Change.

by admin In reply to Outsourcing jobs - good, ...

We can, and have in the past, leveraged this trend to increase our wealth.

People need to stop thinking about entitlement and do some work and good thinking to capitalize on these trends though. Reinvent yourself everyday according to the new world around you.

You can't just depend on an employer or your government to do it this for you.

If something is done cheaper or better abroad, adopt it where you can into your personal strategy. This way you will beat your competition with a two sided sword freeing yourself up to specialize in valuable areas and offering other services at the lowest cost to your customers.

By cutting the cost on one side you will be able to offer your own services at a higher compensation and profit here while still passing on the overall lower cost to your customer. You will bring more income to yourself and your country by competing internationally.

What is killing our economy is too much subsidies, taxation and tariffs. We cannot equally compete on the world market with high tariffs and taxation when pitted against countries that do not have to pass along these problems to their customers with high prices. It is artificial and we increasingly cannot compete.

Subsidies seem good in the short term, but they keep us producing goods and services which people do not want anymore, raising our prices even further on the world market by taxing desireable goods and services, and by excessive taxation taking individual consumer income down to the point where they can afford to buy less.

We are being distracted to believe the government can take care of everything and this is what's killing us- not outsourcing. Outsourcing is slowing the death of our economy and yet getting blamed at the same time. If we don't get smart and stop this with our votes we will be going the path of the Romans, the French, the British- where our pride and feeling that we are now entitled world leaders will bring about our own fall. In the end, all of those and many others tried to control their holdings militarily in their last days of conquest and colonialism when they could not compete economically worldwide, and this further eroded their local economies.

We must learn to compete economically again. We must compete in the world today without asking our government to create short term artificial markets and work diligently to succeed.

To say our jobs are gone- well so are the jobs of the Hop Threshers and the Mule Train Drivers.

Employment is a dynamic world.

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Well put

by DC_GUY In reply to There is always opportuni ...

When the Paradigm Shift from an industrial economy to information-based was first recognized, Toffler and the other futurists agreed on one thing: it would be marked by massive decentralization.

Production: Less need for giant factories. One-off manufacturing, individuals making their own stuff just the way they like it, division of labor in effect at the individual level as people provide services to each other without a corporate sponsor.

Information: Everyone is a content producer. JennyCam, personal websites, chat rooms, BBS, niche newsletters.

Work: Everyone has a workstation, webcam, and phone. Fewer reasons to "go to the office."

Housing: As a result, less need to live in hives. Easing off of traffic, crowding, pollution, urban squalor, insane home prices in metro areas.

Wealth: The individualization of production leads to individualization of marketing. Less need for the resources of a corporation, fewer ways for alpha male investors to accumulate disproportionate concentrations of capital.

And finally: GOVERNMENT! Less large-scale commerce to regulate, fewer visible transactions to tax, the return of a parallel barter economy.

Government is effective (and arguably at that) only in the governing of large-scale processes. As government becomes an organism unto itself, a distinct player in the economy, then as a survival trait it nurtures the growth of large-scale processes with which to establish symbiosis, and squelches the growth of microeconomies.

We need to break out of that government/corporate-driven industrial-era economic model, or America truly will not be able to compete in the new economy.

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Things that go bump in the night.

by sleepin'dawg In reply to Outsourcing jobs - good, ...

It is part of the human condition to fear the unknown and one of the main features of the unknown is change. The Paradigm Shift has led us away from the familiar aspects of a manufacturing economy towards a knowledge based economy and has left many feeling insecure as to their capability of meeting the challenge. No longer can one expect getting a degree will be the acme of their learning experience. Those days have gone forever but many are still hopeful they will return and are resentful because they know they wont. To further add to their insecurity the rate of change is accelerating to the point no one can expect to be in the same job beyond a thirty month time frame and even that may be overly optimistic. The great fear is the insecurity that arises from this and the fear of being unable to adapt enough to keep pace. If the fears were recognized and acknowledged then a lot of the insecurity would be overcome but it is difficult
to be objective in situations that make one feel so subjective. Should companies do anything to alleviate these matters; of course but it is often difficult to justify something to shareholders that cuts into the profit picture. Companies must look to the long term benefits of a stable work force and will realize the benefits with a more stable profit line over that long term. Eventually the benefits will be brought out to the employees in terms ofsuch things as flex time, shorter hours and telecommuting but it is all still too new to be recognized, even though it has been ongoing for over twenty-five years.

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Another Good Source of Info - And A Great Video Too!

by ballen In reply to Outsourcing jobs - good, ...

Check out www.outsourceoutrage.com (fun video spoofing offshoring attempts) and www.techsunite.org . There's also a great report on the impact of US Tech job loss at http://www.washtech.org/reports/AmericasHighTechBust/AmericasHighTechBust.pdf .

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Multi National Corporations - Not to be trusted

by dbooneweaver In reply to Outsourcing jobs - good, ...

Is it not strange how upstarts such as Dell and Microsoft take advantage of the the safty living here in the US while building thier fortunes.
This is not enough for these people, greed/power rules thier lives. They would gladly undermine our country to reach thier goals.
We should escort these people to the border this would be a great use of outsourcing.
Dan Weaver

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Uncontrolled Trade will destroy The US

by dbooneweaver In reply to Outsourcing jobs - good, ...

"From a historical perspective.....the movement of jobs overseas is a hardly a new trend. Manufacturing jobs have been fleeing this country for decades. The shift of employment out of manufacturing in the United States, however, has led neither to rampant unemployment nor a declining standard of living."

This whole concept that the world is our friend as long as they do business with us is absurd!!!

We give free access to any one wishing to have a job so business lack strong management can have an edge with cheap labor.

We do free trade with China a country bent on destroying the US in order for importers the practice money changing to make a profit.

We give China and now India technology (YES GIVE)
which they then in turn use to compete with us.

Why do our Public Colleges and Universities bend over backwards to educate the world with taxpayer money. This is bad business, if they want the education charge them through the nose.


These multinationals love to sit under the umbrella oth the protection our our great country but will stab us in the back for a Buck.

Remember Ford Motor Company was doing a great deal of busines with Hitler before WWII

Capitalism is great but it is like fire. Uncontrolled it will burn everything in it path.
If Dell, HP ect wish to hire people over seas that is great but don't try to import back to the US with out a tarrif. (If you need slave labor to be in business you are not need in this World.

Dan

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At the heart of the problem is globalization as such.

by jkameleon In reply to Outsourcing jobs - good, ...

Before globalization, techies invented stuff for markets, typically a couple of 10 millions big.

After globalization, there's only one market, a couple of billions big, about 100 times bigger than before. Consequently, products are made in series roughly 100 bigger than before, and software is sold in 100 times more copies than before.

Now, regardless of whether the product is produced in series of couple of 10, a couple of 1000, or couple of million pieces, it still has to be invented only once. Regardless of how many copies of software are sold, it still has to be written only once.

Following above logic, global demand for technical innovation is about to fall 100 times, give or take a zero.

There is no way technology profession could came through such drastic fall of demand unscaved. Buerocratic measures can only delay the inevietable. The only thing that can reverse this trend is end of globalization and start of new (hopefully) cold war. This is the most certain way to force business & politics to get more interested in science and technological development. Otherwise, there are only two options:

1) Find a way to protect tech profession in developed world the same way, and for the same reasons agriculture is protected.

2) Stop conning the youth in technical professions, close half of tech universities, and just let it go.

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