Outsourcing


"...the debate over trade and economic globalization issues is shifting to the states... a revolt against federal trade policies that would deny state and local governments the authority to give preferences in contract awards to firms that create jobs where the tax dollars that par for those contracts are collected...

"Under pressure from unions, more than three dozen states have begun exploring legislative remedies that prevent offshoring of state jobs and give preferences to firms that create jobs at home, employ union workers or pay a living wage...

"...a new pattern of state activism... States are now the vanguard of the progressive movement" (Joel Rogers. "Devolve This!" The Nation, Aug. 30, 2004: 20-28).


"The war on Iraq has made us all painfully aware of the Pentagon's growing reliance on private companies...

"The "privatize first, ask questions later" mentality has led to the situation we face now in Iraq, where private companies are performing front-line military functions ranging from providing security to the Coalition Provisional Authority (Blackwater) to training the new Iraqi army (Vinnell) to protecting oil pipelines (Erinys) to interrogating prisoners (CACI)...

"...problems of accountability abound...

"Take Halliburton. Despite overcharging for gasoline it brought to Iraq from Kuwait, charging for three times as many meals as it was serving to troops and taking millions of dollars in kickbacks, the company continues to get new contracts(William D. Hartung. "Outsourcing Is Hell." The Nation, June 7, 2004: 5-6, 22).


"Excellent news, Americans! U.S. corporations say that they are no longer "off-shoring" our middle-class jobs. It seems that they have grown afraid of the rising public anger at this self-serving fattening of their already ample bottom lines. They fear that there will be a political backlash from workers, customers, Congress--and plain ol' American patriots. Does this mean that greedheaded CEOs are no longer shipping our manufacturing, professional, and high-tech jobs to India, Pakistan, Russia, and other low-wage centers? Of course not. It simply means they no longer say "off-shoring." Instead, corporate PR departments have coined new euphemisms--"remote global sourcing," or "right-shoring."

"A new report finds that off-shoring (by whatever name) is not only continuing unabated, but accelerating rapidly...

"Well, says one off-shoring specialist, so what: "It's free enterprise. We're trying to make money." So are bank robbers. The proper word for what these CEOs are doing is stealing. They're stealing America's middle-class future" (Jim Hightower. "Walking With Autocrats." Texas Observer, 10/22/04: 15).


Colby Glass, MLIS