Skip to comments.'Exporting America: Why Corporate Greed Is Shipping American Jobs Overseas' by CNN's Lou Dobbs
Posted on 09/08/2004 3:36:00 PM PDT by Destro
Posted on Sun, Aug. 22, 2004
Business books: 'Exporting America: Why Corporate Greed Is Shipping American Jobs Overseas'
"Exporting America: Why Corporate Greed Is Shipping American Jobs Overseas," by Lou Dobbs (Warner Business Books, 208 pages, $19.95)
Look out, Silicon Valley! Bangalore, India, is gaining on you. Some folks in India even believe that their country's version of Silicon Valley has already surpassed its California counterpart as a center for high-tech employment.
In his new book, "Exporting America," CNN's Lou Dobbs shows how strongly that belief is held in India with a headline from the Jan. 6, 2004, issue of The Times of India: "Silicon Valley Falls to Bangalore."
The story under that headline, Dobbs writes, bragged that Bangalore has 150,000 information-technology engineers compared with 130,000 in Silicon Valley. Dobbs believes that that story can't be written off as merely nationalistic exaggeration.
"India is only one of the many countries benefiting from the exporting of American jobs. But it has also been one of the most aggressive in pursuing professional-level jobs, from medical technicians to software programs. American companies have been all too happy to answer India's siren call of educated English-speakers willing to work at some of the world's lowest wages," Dobbs writes.
General Electric's Capital International Services, Dobbs points out, was one of the pioneers of outsourcing domestic operations to India. The company, Dobbs writes, employs 1,300 at its four centers in India and says it saves about $400million annually by not having Americans do those jobs.
"The people there write software; they review invoices and insurance claims; they do market analysis. CIS also offers its services to other American companies looking for outsourced resources," Dobbs writes.
Although India lags behind other Asian countries in manufacturing, it has a leg up, according to Dobbs, in the service sector and is a magnet for some of America's highest-paying jobs.
"There are programmers all over the world, but the Indian Institutes of Technology (known as IITs) are turning out thousands of these programmers a year. They are men and women who are well-educated, speak impeccable English, and are thrilled to make $10,000 a year," Dobbs writes.
GE, as Dobbs makes clear in abundant detail, is only one of many companies outsourcing high-tech and professional jobs to India and other parts of the world where wage expectations are lower. Among the others spotlighted by Dobbs for outsourcing jobs to India, the Philippines, Romania, Ireland, Poland and other countries are IBM, SAS Institute, Intel, Microsoft, Perot Systems, Apple, Computer Associates, Dell, Hewlett-Packard, Oracle and Sun Microsystems.
Early in the book Dobbs delivers a broadside against the general trend of shipping jobs offshore. He says it is undermining the American middle class, putting Americans out of work, forcing Americans to work harder and longer for less pay, devastating some communities and depriving governments at all levels of the tax revenue for upgrading public education and providing other essential goods and services.
Dobbs, whose views on shipping jobs offshore have been under continual attack by advocacy groups and consultants for multinational corporations, takes the view that corporations who send jobs offshore are firing their own customers, because American workers will eventually find themselves unable to purchase the goods and services being exported back to America by American companies.
"India can provide our software; China can provide our toys; Sri Lanka can make our clothes; Japan make our cars. But at some point we have to ask, what will we export? At what will Americans work? And for what kind of wages? No one I've asked in government, business or academia has been able to answer those questions," Dobbs writes.
- Cecil Johnson,
Knight Ridder Tribune
You're so right. We Americans are certainly getting screwed up one side and down the other. Companies will reem us at every possible opportunity. Specifically, Americans certainly do get saddled with most if not all of the R&D costs of drugs.
You got that right.
I think most of the money the pharmaceutical corporations spend on "research" is research into into such things as how to change the formula when the patent on the old formula is about to expire.
Most of the real research is not done by drug companies.
And the other funny part is that people tend to look at medicine to save them from their own bad behavior and habits.
It's like, got a problem, take a pill. Then you can keep doing what got you sick to begin with. Ah, progress.
And the other lurking problem we have is that in our technological, increasingly knowledged based economy--just what are we supposed to do with the half of Americans who are of below average intelligence?
Yep. I would say MOSTLY salesmen. This entire "service" economy that "we're moving to" is nothing but endless sales jobs. There's nothing wrong with a sales career, I'm in sales myself. But there is certainly no technical expertise or education requirement, generally speaking, to sell ANY product or service. As a matter of fact, most salesmen are complete morons at everything else, that's why they're in SALES!
Right. And if there is not a disease that describes your "disorder" we'll invent one.
So true... I was an accountant for a lot of years for a Fortune 500 company (voluntary retirement/burnout) so I understand making a good return for stockholders. What I don't understand is the CEO's getting millions in bonuses due to big improvements in the bottom line and that improvement is to the detriment of the people who worked their fanny's off to get him those bonuses. The thing is: look at the guys from Enron, Global Crossing, etc., they didn't care if they screwed the little guy, they made their millions, had the big homes, yachts, etc... and when the companies went South figured they could retire to their little world.. THANK GOD George Bush has the BA!!s to take them to the woodshed. I actually remember when the CEO's got a salary and a "decent" bonus if the company did well... we had benefits, decent retirement plans, insurance at a reasonable cost, and the company made money and the stockholders made money and things hummed along just fine...
Someone mentioned the education-thing... well a lot of the Indian's, Pakistani's, etc., got their educations here and in England.
Another ramification not often mentioned: China is becoming so prosperous (thanks to us) that they are sucking up the worlds supplies of steel, wood, cement, and oil... so, ladies and gentlemen, we have shot ourselves in the foot on more than one issue...
Yes. Devaluation causes the price of everything imported to rise. Instead of buying cheap crap from China to fill our Wal-Marts, we will have to start producing it ourselves once again. This part is good, because it puts us back to work. The tough part is the price increases for things we cannot produce ourselves, like oil. we will have to get serious about energy independence, like a Japan-style program to build nuclear plants everywhere.
True... also spend millions on advertising so everyone will run to their local doctor and DEMAND that latest designer drug.... without advertising and bribes to doctors they could probably substantially lower the cost of drugs..
Seriously, they do sell cheaper to other countries and they use us in the USA to make up the difference...
How do you get 1/2 of the population is below average?
I actually believe it's a combination of: lack of mental stimulation/curiosity, kids too drugged due to the ADHD craze to be able to concentrate, drugs (illegal kind), and most importantly: Poor Diet! Sugar, Sugar and more sugar. Kids needs protein in the morning to get the brain cells working and they need sleep to recharge their brain cells... and they need parents who give a Da*n about what they are doing.
Because they invested in the right stocks back when they had jobs?
I guess we never learn. Remember way back when Japan would purposely take a loss on products competing against something we would make and then when they put the American Manufacturer out of business they would raise the price... then we got smart and started beating them at their own games. France subsidized the Airbus trying to put Boein gout of business -- I won't fly in an Airbus on principle and it ticks me off that any American Airline would buy one! China ignores our intellectual property and copies GM cars, Boeing airplanes, Cape Canaveral, etc., and we can thank Clinton for lifting rules against selling them our technological information that applied to National Security!
Same thing with college textbooks.
there was one website that was selling American textbooks from other English speaking countries to America at a fraction of what those books cost in their American editions--and the big American textbook publishers had their lawyers stop him.
I wonder how many other products this might apply to.
And irony is that people overseas can afford to work for less because their cost of living is less--and the American worker, by purchasing medicine, textbooks, and who knows what else, is subidizing the very condition that is costing America jobs.
How many Indians could have learned programming if they had to spend $150 for every textbook.
I used to shop at Akihabara too. Think of it as a giant flea market for Asian electronics. Actually, it's a lot like Fry's.
Except fewer and fewer U's are teaching engineering because that, too, is beginning to be outsourced!
Baloney. A company that I used to work for exported almost two hundred jobs to India (mine among them). All the jobs were held by people with degrees, many of them advanced. The jobs went to less educated, less skilled and knowledgable people. But they were less expensive employees, and there were far fewer environmental or other government regulations to be concerned with. The quality of the work suffered, and two years later the company was sold for pennies on the dollar.
Because that's how it works.
But even someone of average intelligence will be hard pressed to make a decent living the way things are going.
Wasn't that the French??? We don't play with a fair playing field as long as the Socialist countries subsidize their companies.
Our education system is a product of the NEA..
You got that right.
I have been systematically removing sugar and its cheap substitute, corn syrup, from my diet.
And if you read ingredients, they put that crap in almost everything!
If I eat canned vegetables, I rinse them out with tap water to remove as much sugar as possible.
I remember making bread from scratch--and it tasted better than any store-bought squish bread--and the stuff I made had very few ingredients--none of which was sugar or corn syrup (stuff you'll find in store bought bread).
But now I eat no bread at all on the premise that bread is an unnatural and unhealthy food our bodies were never designed to eat.
Oh, and by the way: my digestion has been trouble free, with no surprise bathroom attacks for years.
Looking back at my former American diet, it's amazing to me now how I accepted digestion malfunction as a matter of course.
We could go a long way towards lowering the cost of medical insurance in this country is people would get into the habit of shopping only the outside isles of their supermarkets... realize that low fat = high sugar ... that sugar and preservatives are the worst thing possible for us and even worse for children. That water is healthier than cokes.
Having kids means dinner at the table with conversation and healthy food; not McD's day in and out...
I feed my dogs a healthier diet than most kids eat these days... so, once again, I say it's not lack of intelligence, but lifestyle.
That reminds me: I switched to plain cabonated water--seltzer--instead of soda. I am very happy I did.
Beg to differ my friend; let me explain...automotive and everything around it is in high demand. With the sophistication and complexity of the today's automobiles, one needs a highly qualified technician to "be allowed" to work on.(all, but all, car manufacturers demand a highly skilled/trained technician to diagnose/repair that particular vehicle)
I should know, I am a 25+ Years Chrysler/Jeep/Dodge Technician and I can tell you that, we can not find a decent technician to do the job right. Plenty of wanna be's ("carniceros", "boomerang tech", "butchers") no shortage (they last less than 3 weeks) but nothing of a reliable and honest, old school technicians!
The old "shade tree", "DIY", kinda of Saturday Morning type of "let me fix this ol' jalopy" is all but gone. We are talking about super sophisticated hard/software operating systems taking care of your wheels. On average any of todays cars has at least 9+ computers on board, controlling misc. functions.
In my daily routine, computer related, reprogramming, updating and set up's are the routine, instead of mechanical wrenching like in the past.
The thing am trying to emphasize is that life/jobs is an ever changing medium/society where by, we all have to adapt soon or later. So, be flexible,...everything will work out, provide you are not stuck in the 50th's panacea.
A lot of people don't realize soda (even diet) can contribute to diabetes, hypertension, digestive problems, weight gain, etc...
The publishing industry is very weird, in no small part because it is HIGHLY regulated by the FTC. A lot of people don't know this, but many dimensions of the pricing model are fixed by the Federal government. As odd as it may sound, the FTC considers all the major publishers a de facto monopoly and regulates them as such, even though that charge is pretty ludicrous upon casual inspection. If they do not follow certain pricing guidelines, they get hit with an anti-trust suit.
The primary reason prices are so high is that the publishers are required to show pricing parity across all wholesale transactions regardless of size. What this means is that they are not allowed to price books based on amortizing the overhead of acquiring the sale, whether they are selling one book or ten thousand in the deal. The net result is that the largest book distributors in the US (e.g. Barnes & Noble, Amazon, et al) must be sold books at a base discount no better than what they give to Joe's Book Shack who orders five books a year. In essence, the entire market must be priced at the level of the most expensive transaction they do. Otherwise the Feds jump all over them.
The big distributors do get some indirect and creative comps (essentially payola) for their volume, but it isn't tied to the actual price they get invoiced for a given book. In essence, the FTC has outlawed volume discounts for books, asserting that it is an anti-competitive practice to do so. Such idiotic laws do not apply to other countries, hence why their books are cheaper and why you are not allowed to import "unregulated" books.
Apparently a better living than anywhere else on the planet doesn't qualify as a "decent living"? Aren't you setting the bar a little high? Did no one in the 19th century make a decent living since none of them had a television?
Most "average" people in the US do very well by any reasonable standards, and that hasn't been changing. What has changed is that people want to live well without any of the effort and creativity that got us here in the first place. Average people with discipline and good sense can retire well before they collect Social Security in this country. The only thing you can argue has changed is that we are losing our discipline and good sense.
That is nuts!!! Inventors don't draw up plans for what they invent?????
You are saying the 12.4% of the workforce in America has control over the economy???
And what is the solution? Force American corporations to hire someone in the US at 10 times what they can pay for the same quality work somewhere else? Once a worker knows he is protected by law from losing his job, the entire country will be run like the Department of Motor Vehicles.
"what did they think"? Hey, at that time USA will be closer to Latin America, and in Latin America they have tradition of dealing promptly with the unruly voters, unions etc... :)
Maybe. I'll also wager that they didn't spend much time on FR whining that they cannot find a job, and telling others not to go to engineering school.
Let me guess, you were out of job and then you found a new one. Am I right?
Simple solution - remove the clearance/citizenship requirement and Chinese will be glad to help, so will be the Iranians, even engineers from Western Europe! And many will be willing to work for FREE! :) A solution freetraders would love.
Only one thing keeps Reagan Democrats and Evangelical Protestants from voting against Republicans - it is strange infatuation of liberals with pederasty, abortion and secularism. Once Dems discover what handicaps them and moderate their stand, they will stay in power for generations!
There are lies, bigger lies and statistics. "Unemployment rate" is a very misleading measure.
He, he. Did you have your coffee yet?
How the outsourcing CEO fared? Did he bailed out before the collapse with a fat profit? Did he jump to another company to do the same scooping trick?
A non-unionised employee in a state with "at will" employment has no protection whatsoever from losing his job, unless he or she is part of a protected class, such as Black, female, or homosexual, and has enough $$$ to get an attorney to to take the case.
Under absolutely no circumstances (at least none that I've heard of) does an employee have even a ghost of a chance of suing if his entire function or department has been shut down.
I have reason to know this. After ten years as "management" in the same company, I was morally compelled to resign because I was threatened with reprisals if I refused to participate in an unethical scheme to defraud the union.
But here's the fun part, which most people don't know: if you are fired for refusing to do something unethical or illegal you have no recourse except in rare instances covered by specific laws.
For example, you work as a cashier and your boss tells you to short change the customers. You refuse and he fires you. Tough luck, Charlie. Maybe you shouldn't have been paying so much attention at church when you were a kid. But, no problem for the employer -- he'll just keep cycling through the labour pool until he finds someone willing to lie, cheat, and steal for him.
And, under such circumstances, don't expect to collect unemployment either, because unless you have amassed whole file cabinets of corroborating documentation, the state D-o-L is going to believe the employer rather than the ex-employee.
The idea of the pampered American worker is a myth used to justify the economic treason of American business.
Wages can only go up in one of two ways. A labor shortage which happens when population growth stabilizes somewhat and employers are competing for workers. The other way is when the government creates labor abundance through uncontrolled immigration or outsourcing and that is with unions. Right now countries like China which are Communist have a tight rope on their labor so labor will stay very cheap there but that could destabilize.
I think it's the education system and also NAFTA. In my area, NW PA, labor and manufacturing jobs have left in droves since NAFTA was enacted, leaving unemployment and other local business closings and a population and brain drain in it's wake. Many people I know, both with and without higher education, now work 2 or 3 lower paying jobs, still earning less than before and no more benefits. NAFTA has made it just plain less expensive for some labor employers to ship work to places like Mexico and others.
And since the US market accounts for about HALF their sales--that's the smart thing to do, right?
Actually, most of the bargaining agreements I've seen in the last few years have involved MINIMAL pay increases--maybe 3-4% max.
The smart unions are negotiating job security. That's where the action is. Surprise, surprise!
In that case, compressing CEO pay from current 300x lowest-worker to say, 10x lowest worker would be a BIG help in "maximizing ROI."
But of course, ROI maximization is a short-term-thinking mandate--you knew that, right?
After all, as Mr Sloan said: "What's good for GM is good for the Country."
Who could argue with him--he must be smart because he's rich!! (and dead at this time.)
When and if you get over your case of terminal consumerism, call home. Your Dad will be unemployed and will be grateful for the chance to talk.
The slump in Big Two sales has been happening since June. Only the gas-efficient foreign nameplates are selling--and the high-end stuff like BMW Lexus, Benz
MANY of those IIT grads cheated like hell--just as MANY of the PRChina "engineering" degrees are Xerox copies with rather poor forging.
Keep up with the news.
It was Ron Reagan who forced the Japanese to build their cars here--e.g., Honda and Toyota.
No accident. Reagan understood the National Interest--which Carly Fiorina couldn't SPELL.
Odd. Harley's "overpriced crap" outsells their capacity every year--here AND overseas.