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Re: Outsourcing - light commercial and high end residential

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I agree with your comment.  While there are things that I don't agree with
Dennis on (his protectionist views for one), I have yet to see any comment
from him that I casue would label as racist (although, personally, I
believe that just about EVERYONE has a little bit of 'racism' in
them...after all just about everyone tends to like to associate with
people who seem to be more like themselves in appearence, ideals,
beliefs, etc...but then this is not what most people think of when they
use the term racism).  As you correctly point out, there is a BIG
difference between protectionism and racism.

Personally, I think Aswin should have listened to his own advice before
writing his post with an accusation of racism:

"Please take a minute to think through a few things and get a better
perspective of the world around you before you put them in writing."

At best his accusation was inappropriate and at worst...well, I won't go
there.  Aswin's post contained some comments that have some merit to them,
but he "shot his argument in the foot" by trying to make it a issue of
racism when I don't believe that it is.

As to Dennis' belief of a "storm" it possible?  Yes.  Is he
delusional?  No.  The question really becomes as to how likely is his
scenario.  What he does not factor into the "equation" is captialism's
ability to apply self-corrections (Bill's P's "invisible hand").  Let's
play out Dennis' scenario...companies continue to ship jobs oversea to
"cheaper workers"...this keeps companies profits up, but likely does
little to reduce end costs of products (after all, the motivation of
sending those jobs is usually to reduce costs to the company while keeping
prices the same to increase profits)...well, at some point the companies
hit a little snag...if they continue to take work away from Americans to
"give" to others, then one of their biggests markets will lose income and
lose the ability to buy the companies there will have to be
some sort of "correction" that occurs (i.e. companies don't ship all jobs
overseas, workers retrain for jobs that are or cannot be shipped overseas,
etc).  To me, the only real question is will such a "self-correction"
occur in a timely fashion or not...will it occur too late to really do
much good before serious harm is done.  That is the question that I don't
see the answer to.

As to the whole buy "Made in the USA" arguement, it is just slightly
absurd to me, but that is just my own personal belief.  Everyone is
entitled to their own beliefs in that area.  I have no problem if Dennis
wants to proceed down that path.  I will note that it will be EXTREMEMLY
difficult for him, as there are LOTS of things we "need" (as people
and as structural engineers) that are not made in the USA.  Basically, if
I were to try and work hard to only buy items made in the USA, then I
would likely spend all my time hunting for such things and not have time
to actually work for a living.  That is why it is absurd to me.  Not to
mention, that if everyone in other countries took the same approach (only
bought thing produced in their country), then there would be a LOT of US
companies that would have to layoff lots of American workers because like
it or not, there are lots of "Made in the USA" products and services that
get bought and consumed overseas.


Ypsilanti, MI

On Sat, 20 Dec 2003, John P. Riley wrote:

> Aswin Rangaswamy, P.E.:
> Since I am a structural engineer, not an economist, I welcome worthy
> arguments from which I may better understand the global landscape.  I
> appreciate your submittal as being worthy of consideration within the
> context of global economics.
> Protectionism and racism are distinctly different.
> Pity we can't focus on ideas and avoid personal attacks.
> Pity honorable behavior is scarce.
> John Riley
> ________________
> Hello Dennis:
> I am one of those people who sometimes take the time to read your posting
> (rather long quite often) and I do appreciate your long posting which most
> of the time makes sense.  But of all the posting you have had I feel that
> this is one of your worst comments which seems to brings out a little bit of
> racism.  I was of the opinion that you were trying to save the profession
> from going overseas but it seems to be more deeper than that.  I would not
> mind if you had said that the quality was bad but no, it was the "made in
> china" that got you.
> Even in the most "made in USA" products some of the parts are sometimes
> exported and put together in the US.  I am unsure if that is a loop hole in
> the labeling.
> Would you refuse a client who is Chinese too because he is made in China???
> Do you not design houses for people of other nationality.  Were all your
> professors Americans too?  Come-on Dennis get a grip of things.  You
> probably defend these by saying that these are not overseas jobs.  But my
> point is most of the first generation people were not "MADE in USA".
> One of the best things about the US culture is the diversity which I have
> appreciated all these years and I hope you don't corrupt other peoples
> minds.
> SURVIVAL OF THE FITTEST.  That should be the way of thinking.  There are
> several programmer who have lost their jobs due to out-sourcing and do you
> know why some have not found a job - they have not gone with the flow.  The
> ones not finding jobs (in my experience) are the ones who did not acquire
> new knowledge, did not want to be re-molded, did not want to move around.
> This will definitely happen to our profession too.  The best way in my
> opinion is not by condemning foreigners or overseas jobs but to make good
> use of the opportunity.
> Do you think US went down the drain once the manufacturing jobs were lost to
> companies abroad.  No, US is still one of the wealthier countries in the
> world.  Americans are smart enough to find new ways to make new things out
> of nothing.  The people (I am talking about the FITTEST) who got laid off in
> manufacturing got training and had to change career.
> It is quite normal for companies to move their office location due to the
> cost of running business.  Even an one man shop might move to a different
> city if the office space he rents becomes too expensive.  This was
> unthinkable 50 years back due to limited transportation.  Well here comes
> GLOBALIZATION.  Now with the new trends in communication any company can
> work across the globe.
> I have been working in the US for over 10 years.  With the advent of
> globalization, if there comes  an excellent opportunity that I could work
> from across the globe, I might even do that.
> It is probably time that you throw out the computer that you have been using
> to write these words.  Because I bet you anything, it is not completely made
> in the USA.  Most of the components are made abroad.  Most of the software
> that you see are also made abroad.  As you might know, Microsoft has a huge
> development office in India.  But what you did not know is that Microsoft
> and other major firms conduct job fairs in the US to recruit people to head
> their office abroad.
> Have you had a chance to look into everything that you have in the house -
> is everything made in USA.  I could go on and on but it would be a non-stop
> argument.
> To sum it all - I personally feel that this comment of your is ridiculous.
> I hope this "virus" does not spread among our intelligent SE community who
> have developed this amazing portal called the SEAINT (denoting SEA
> International) where SEs from across the globe access and share information.
> Please take a minute to think through a few things and get a better
> perspective of the world around you before you put them in writing.
> Aswin Rangaswamy, P.E.
>   ----- Original Message -----
>   From: Dennis Wish
>   To: seaint(--nospam--at)
>   Sent: Thursday, December 18, 2003 10:36 PM
>   Subject: RE: Outsourcing - light commercial and high end residential
>   My wife ordered a pair of shoes for me and the label said made in China 
> I returned the shoes. Then I looked at the shoes we bought at the mall 
> Hush Puppies. Again, made in China but now its too late for me to take them
> back (Ive had them for a month and never checked the label). My wife told
> me that Dexter makes shoes in the U. S. and I asked her to go with me to
> find Dexter. If this is what it takes, I am starting to pay more attention 
> I only hope its not too late.

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