Sunday, January 25, 2004

Outsourcing: The uneven playing field

This article is one of hundreds lately addressing the enormous impact on the US labor force of "outsourcing" of relatively well-paying jobs abroad. Ireland makes the most money from such jobs, followed closely by India. As I know from having recently called the 1-800 number to get a fixit for this laptop, New Delhi is the early-morning center for HP customer-service reps. (Who were polite, knowledgable and almost intelligible.)

So--Bush complains about uneven playing fields in manufactured goods, and as a result imposes tariffs to protect US manufacturers (read contributors). But meanwhile jobs flow abroad by the thousands, with not a peep from this Administration. It's part of the globalization of all forms of capital and labor, it is claimed; a natural result of the world being shrunk by quick and ready transport and communication. The American worker (not a Bush contributor) can suffer, but not a corporation. No siree, not when they save money by having their phones answered in India for one-fifth the expense. And we wonder why this is a jobless recovery.

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