28 March 2004

Can you say 1929?

In today's Arizona Republic, Charles Kelly chimes in with Outsourcing helps no worker, an insightful look into outsourcing and its ramifications for workers around the globe.
Investors and corporations know they get a triple-barreled benefit from outsourcing work to other countries. First, the workers who lose their jobs are replaced by workers making one-tenth to one-third as much.

Second, workers who lose their jobs enter the labor market and have a depressing effect on workers who still have jobs that can't be exported from this country: construction workers, truck drivers, salesclerks, waiters and so on.

That's why the outsourcing of jobs has hurt not only manufacturing workers, but virtually all who are in the same income class. It's not just the 5 percent of workers who are hurt by globalization, it's 100 percent.

Third, workers who still have manufacturing jobs know that when a corporation threatens to shut down a plant if employees don't behave, like wanting a bigger share of the corporation's profits, the threat is real. Even unionized employees have learned that they have effectively lost all their bargaining power.


Did you ever take an economics class?

The Depression was caused, in very large part, due to the Hawley-Smoot tariff act. This was about protectionism. Protect American jobs from the foreigners. If we took your advice and put up some barriers to global capitalism to stop outsourcing, we would be commencing with the very policy that caused the depression.

We could also raise taxes, as well. That was another Hoover policy.