Alot still to be determined

Discussion in 'Politics' started by DKSuddeth, Dec 6, 2003.

  1. DKSuddeth
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    DKSuddeth Senior Member

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    http://www.thehill.com/david_hill/102903.aspx


    Job market may define ’04 election

    The job market may define the 2004 election, but most public polls are not yet probing the width and breadth of this issue.

    Of course, the major consumer-confidence surveys continually ask about the employment outlook, but most explicitly political polling is ignoring this volatile issue. Save for some very superficial queries about the overall economy, few published polls are asking Americans detailed questions about key issues such as job outsourcing, an issue that could become a monster in the next election.

    This oversight is not surprising because polling, like news reporting, tends to react to full-blown crises rather than spotting emerging issues. And public opinion may not be ripe enough to poll yet on key jobs issues such as outsourcing because voters may not even know enough to express meaningful views about the issue.

    Even now, readers of this column may be wondering what “job outsourcing” is, rather than pondering their opinions on the topic. The basic vocabulary and definitions of this emerging issue are just now developing.

    Outsourcing, in a nutshell, is the practice of exporting American jobs to foreign countries. Lately, there has been a lot of publicity about this practice for computer help desks and customer-service call centers. You call for software support or your bank balance and find yourself talking with someone in Mumbai, India.

    Proponents of outsourcing say that it saves us all money and is good for the economy.
    But what if it’s your job that’s outsourced?

    Okay, you’re saying, I’m not in any of those industries. Not to worry, you say. Not so fast, the experts say.

    Studies by the U.S. Labor Department and Forrester Research say that soon many other kinds of jobs will be sent offshore. For example, an MSN.com compilation of those studies finds that 184,347 architecture jobs, 74,642 legal jobs and 29,639 art and design jobs will be outsourced from the United States by 2015. Overall, the studies say that a total of 3.3 million U.S. jobs will be moving offshore by then, including 288,281 management jobs. The respected Gartner Group has called that “an irreversible mega trend.”

    India is perhaps the best-known of the countries attracting outsourced jobs, but other nations are in hot pursuit and their aggressiveness is astounding. Take the Philippines, for example. The country has a website, www.outsourcephilippines.org, that is worth looking at because it makes clear that all sorts of professional jobs, even those in healthcare, are up for grabs. Have every American worker look at that Web page and opinion would start to move.

    But there are other reasons that pollsters may not yet know how to handle this fascinating issue. As it is emerging, it has no clear connections to the traditional left-right continuum. Activists from the left wing, such as Texas populist Jim Hightower, and rightists such as the Eagle Forum’s Phyllis Schlafly are starting to agitate on the issue. Hightower has said that corporations “terrorize workers with job outsourcing,” and Schlafly has declared, “The large amount of taxpayer-paid computer work performed by [outsourced] noncitizens for at least 12 state governments and nine federal agencies is a scandal crying out for investigation.”

    Glenn Harlan Reynolds, commenting on the weird androgyny of this issue, somewhat cynically identifies reasons that both liberals and conservatives should favor outsourcing. Conservatives should favor the practice as good for free trade, while liberals should favor it as a better way than foreign aid to redistribute wealth from the rich to the poor.

    So the good news is that more American companies have and will continue to outsource U.S. jobs. The bad news is that American companies have and will continue to outsource U.S. jobs. No wonder we’re not polling this issue more.

    Clearly, this is an important issue that is in desperate need of greater definition and refinement. The campaigns next year may finally accomplish that task. In the meantime, I wonder what telephone interviewing firms in the English-speaking Philippines charge for polling Americans.


    Dr. David Hill is director of Hill Research Consultants, a Texas-based firm that has polled for Re-publican candidates and causes since 1988
     
  2. acludem
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    acludem VIP Member

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    Having been in the job market for nearly 3 months now I can tell you that frankly it sucks. Outsourcing is an interesting issue. It's been going on for years in manufacturing and is now spreading into the information world. It may save us all money, but it costs a lot people their jobs.
     
  3. Psychoblues
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    Psychoblues Senior Member

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    It's all PNAC, Dude. Domination, as in monopoly, takes time. Need I go into the Tri-Laterals, the One-World-Govs, the Illuminati's and all the rest? I'm much more afraid of GE and Robert Murdoch. But I tend to concentrate on real things. Even then, I'm just a lowly American illiterate.

    In 1964 the jamm was "We Shall Overcome". It's still the same jamm in 2003 but it's being sung by an entirely different group and with an entirely different meaning.
     

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