I don't know what your destiny will be, but one thing I know: the only ones among you who will be really happy are those who have sought and found how to serve. - Albert Schweitzer

The day will come when you will trust you more than you do now, and you will trust me more than you do now. And we can trust each other. ... I really do believe that we can all become better than we are. I know we can. But the price is enormous – and people are not yet willing to pay it. - James Baldwin

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Brief Interlude

I'm taking a short break from the software death-march that has become my life for the last couple of months. A few of weeks ago, just as we were launching into our final push toward a release date, our long delayed move to new quarters finally happened. While I was cleaning out my desk, I found an old copy of ComputerWorld which I had saved because of a letter on the then-hot topic of foreign outsourcing of IT jobs. This is from ComputerWorld March 08, 2004.

A Loss of Prosperity

In macroeconomic terms, foreign outsourcing is nothing more than profiteering on the spread between the wages and benefits paid to U.S. workers and the wages of the most desperate and vulnerable people on earth who can be herded into office buildings in Third World economies.

In political terms, foreign outsourcing is the most blatant attack on worker's rights and the most serious threat to the existence of the middle class and the Social Security system in U.S. History.

In sociological terms, foreign outsourcing will result in a dramatic polarization in U.S. Society, divided between the massive numbers who will see their livelihoods ruined by outsourcing and the wealthy few who will profit immensely from it.

Great men of the past built a society that is the envy of the world by inventing ways to increase the level of prosperity enjoyed by all. Now a cadre of intellectual and moral midgets has discovered how to profit from strip-mining that hard-won prosperity.

Pardon me and a few others if we don't celebrate their little discovery or if we regard these business experts as cynical, shortsighted, self-serving fools.

John S. Powers
Software Engineer
General Dynamics Corporation
Fairfax, Va.
As I read this now, I might quibble with the level of hyperbole particularly in the first couple of paragraphs, but other than that, I think he gets it about right.

After things settle down a little bit at work, I hope to breathe some new life into this site.