Page Two

By David Coursey  |  Posted 2004-04-30 Print this article Print

Offshoring makes my liberal bleeding heart beat in two directions at once, confusing me, my cardiologist and my readers. On one level, I support creating more jobs in underdeveloped countries. Economic injustice and underdevelopment was one of the key motivators for World War II as well as the current turmoil in the Arab world. It is in our best interest to spread the wealth, at least enough to keep the peace.
But there is also the fact that the American educational system, perhaps at its strongest when fueled by Cold War fears of Russian scientific and engineering superiority, has been allowed to go to seed. American business leadership didnt stand up for better education because the quarter-to-quarter mentality makes the problem easier to ignore than to solve. Especially when a "solution" (like offshoring) arrives just in the nick of time. But at what long-term cost to America?
My bottom line: Offshoring is unpatriotic and customers should be willing to pay a bit more not to purchase offshored products and services. I also believe that some sort of tax needs to be levied on the value of work done overseas that should been done onshore by American citizens. Business and government must get serious about supporting scientific and technology education at all levels. There are lots of dimensions to this issue, like funding, daycare, working moms, teacher pay, the role of public schools in social policy and curriculum, just to name a few. But sending American jobs overseas only works if we can create enough new, high-paid jobs at home and have people with the skills necessary to fill them. Were not doing that and people are upset to see good American jobs sent to places where they can be done supposedly for 25 percent of the wages an American would be paid. I understand why this is attractive to business. I hope business understands why it is bad for America. (Editors Note: To use eWEEK.coms Talkback feature, you must first register. To do so, click on the word "Register" below.)

One of technology's most recognized bylines, David Coursey is Special Correspondent for, where he writes a daily Blog ( and twice-weekly column. He is also Editor/Publisher of the Technology Insights newsletter and President of DCC, Inc., a professional services and consulting firm.

Former Executive Editor of ZDNet AnchorDesk, Coursey has also been Executive Producer of a number of industry conferences, including DEMO, Showcase, and Digital Living Room. Coursey's columns have been quoted by both Bill Gates and Steve Jobs and he has appeared on ABC News Nightline, CNN, CBS News, and other broadcasts as an expert on computing and the Internet. He has also written for InfoWorld, USA Today, PC World, Computerworld, and a number of other publications. His Web site is

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