Saturday, October 15, 2005

Outing The Outsourcers

We all knew, of course, that the Bush administration "experts" were lying through their teeth when they assured us-- in the run up to the 2004 presidential election-- that outsourcing was good for the economy.

Today, the proof isn't in the pudding. It's in the documented evidence.

In case you haven't been watching CNN's Lou Dobbs rail about the evils of outsourcing for the last 3 years, maybe this article from Manufacturing & Technology News (written by honest to Gawd manufacturing experts-- not BushCo cronies) will explain why your blood pressure rises to dangerous levels when you call one of those 1-800 Lie To Me "help desk" numbers.

Political Appointees Re-Write Commerce Department Report On Offshore Outsourcing; Original Analysis Is Missing From Final Version

The Commerce Department has responded to a half-year-old request by Manufacturing and Technology News for the release a long-awaited study on the issue of "offshore outsourcing" of IT service-sector jobs and high-tech industries. But the 12-page document represented by the agency as its final report is not what was written by its analysts. Rather, it was crafted by political appointees at Commerce and at the White House, according to those familiar with it.

Just the facts:

The original report was a 43 page power point presentation.

The new report is 12 pages of pro-outsourcing "Good News" about, well, the joys of outsourcing.

The new report cites research funded by "organizations and individuals that have been funded by multinationals that benefit from shifting jobs overseas."

"No mention is made of the conflict of interest inherent in the studies cited by the Commerce report."

The original report "was completed well before the November 2004 presidential election but was delayed for clearance by the White House and the Republican-controlled Congress."

"No SEC filings or experts were cited in the released version of the study."

My favorite quotes:

"There is nothing in here that is original research," says outsourcing expert Professor Ronil Hira of the Rochester Institute of Technology, who chairs the Career & Workforce Policy Committee of IEEE-USA. "It's not a balanced or an objective study of what's happening and what the implications are," he adds. "It is missing a lot of the information that was available at the time. It's equivalent of the work of a sophomore at the college where I teach."

Martin Kenney, a professor at University of California-Davis and a member of the ACM panel investigating the issue, concurs. "It's a little bit shocking that that level of work could come out of anybody with a college education," he says. "I mean, I wouldn't accept that from my students in a class."

Outsourcing is great... for anyone above middle management level.

Outsourcing saves money... for executives and stockholders.

Outsourcing creates jobs... for citizens of other countries.

Who's outsourcing?

'Tis a ponderous list, indeed.

Truly heavy sigh.

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