To American IT workers, "offshoring" has become synonymous with "unpatriotic" and "unemployment." But for people in China, India, Singapore, and other countries where the corporations are moving their operations, "outsourcing" and "offshoring" are good news. "If it's the case that you're still in a developing country, you are one lucky person and should just stay right where you are."
Many times throughout the summer, I flipped channels. Although the quality of programming on television warrants flipping with the digitus impudicus, I merely flipped with the remote. I would often stumble upon Lou Dobbs’s show on CNN, I would watch his continuing report on “The Out-Sourcing of America.” In case you’ve been in a developing country with no television or access to American media, the outsourcing of America began just before the dot-com crash and has continued for the past several years. If it’s the case that you are still in a developing country, you are one lucky person and should just stay right where you are.
The last time I checked, America was still a capitalist society. In fact, we Americans pride ourselves on that fact, and everyone knows it. If a company based in America can profit an extra million dollars a year by shipping 100 jobs to China they will do it. It’s basic accounting for companies. However, people like Lou Dobbs and the 100,000 workers of SBC, the huge cable company that has a history of shipping jobs overseas, are all up-in-arms about how anti-American it is to put jobs -- which are apparently "owed" to Americans -- in the hands of workers in developing countries. The workers of SBC claimed that the same company who claimed to need to cut costs by shipping jobs offshore profited 8.5 billion American dollars in the same year. Their argument was essentially that as long as the company was in the black, any and all jobs should be in the hands of Americans because, by God, any American company should be looking out for their own. As one worker put it, “We take pride in what we do in our hometowns. We work for our communities. We work for our taxes. We work here. This is where the jobs should be.” I hope they weren’t saying that to Wall Street because Wall Street doesn’t care about his community. As Hewlett Packard chairman Carly Fiorina has emphatically stated, “there is no job that is America’s God given right anymore.”
The situation with SBC stood out because they employ so many workers and when they went on strike, it was big news. (After all, the media loves nothing more than to report news about themselves.) But the situation at SBC represents the common practice of most large, American based-companies: offshoring.